National Motor Museum Motoring Archives

  • Archives Hub Features
  • Related Resources
  • Web
  • Email
  • Telephone
      +44 (0)1590 614650
  • Address
    • National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, Brockenhurst SO42 7ZN, England, UK
  • Opening Hours
    • Tuesday-Friday 10:00-13:00/14:00-17:00 / Closed over the Christmas period
  • Archival and Other Holdings

    The Motoring Archives hold approximately 300 collections connected with the history of motoring in Great Britain and internationally. They include advertisements, artwork, business records, clippings, correspondence, indentures, diaries, menus, photographs, scrapbooks and technical papers. The Archives support the National Motor Museum’s other collections and are well used as part of the Research and Enquiries Service.

  • History

    The first Montagu Motor Museum was opened in 1956, and was relocated to enlarged and improved accommodation by 1959. The National Motor Museum Trust was established in 1969, and the renamed National Motor Museum opened in 1972. Collecting had begun in 1952 when the enterprising Edward, 3rd Baron Montagu of Beaulieu opened his ancestral home Palace House to the public and placed five cars on display in the entrance hall. This was a tribute to his father John Scott Montagu, who had been a motoring pioneer.

    Edward Montagu founded the Montagu Museum Reference Library in 1960 based on his father’s collection of motoring books and journals. The Motoring Archives originated within the Reference Library Collection. By 2003, it had become clear that the collections management needs of this growing resource could not be properly met by considering them an aspect of the Reference Library, and the Archives became a Collection in their own right.