York Archaeology Online Collections


The Collections and Archives Department of York Archaeology is responsible for the care and management of materials related to our excavations and attractions. We work on a range of projects, from arranging loans from major museums to day-to-day maintenance of the artefacts on display at our attractions, alongside facilitating access to the collections and archives for internal and external researchers.

We are currently working on the ambitious project to make much of the material from the York Collection available online. With artefacts and archives from over a thousand individual sites, this is a significant undertaking: if the information you require is not yet available on this site, please contact us via the Enquiries page.


Photograph of a collection of medieval artefacts related to writing: seals, pens, stone lamp, and candle holders


The York Collection represents one of the largest and most important excavated collections in the UK. It records the history of York and its residents from prehistory to the 20th century, with particularly important assemblages of Viking and Roman artefacts, human bone, and environmental material. Due to the anoxic burial environment in York, organic materials are unusually well-preserved and these represent a key aspect of the overall collection. 

The assemblages which make up the collection can be divided as follows:

Material that is not on display in one of our attractions or touring exhibitions is kept in long-term storage at York Archaeology’s Archaeological Resource Centre where it is the subject of active analysis by academic and independent researchers

More about our collections


The archive holds records related to our excavations, publications, and attractions. The excavation archive contains site recording books, plans and cards, research reports, publication text, images and drawings, and correspondence. The publications and attractions archives contain concept art, original designs, draft publications, and correspondence. There is also an extensive photographic archive in a range of formats including slides and large- and medium-format negatives.

An ongoing digitisation project aims to make many of these resources available online, a process which has already begun with our Slide Digitisation Scheme.

More about our archive

Our Publications

We have produced a range of publications over the past fifty years, from the Interims which recorded our excavations from 1973 to 2001, to the popular Archaeology of York series of in-depth monographs on particular sites and aspects of the city’s archaeology. 

Our publications include:

The Archaeology of York fascicules will be made available online by the end of 2023, with digitisation of our other publications to follow.

More about our publications