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Volume 176: debated on Friday 13 July 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what percentage of and how many documents in 1989 he estimates were (a) passed on to the Public Record Office intact, (b) passed on to the Public Record Office in censored form, (c) retained by his Department in full, (d) retained by his Department in part, (e) destroyed, (f) otherwise disposed of and (g) otherwise unaccounted for.

[holding answer 2 July 1990]: A total of 11,149 documents, in the form of individual files, was passed to the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) in 1989 by Northern Ireland Departments and the Northern Ireland Office. The censoring of files is not permitted and they must be transferred in their entirety since it is not permitted to retain files in part. Files not passed to PRONI are retained by the Departments and filed judged by PRONI not to merit permanent preservation are destroyed. While our procedures provide that all records are accounted for, the percentage of documents retained or destroyed could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.