Sandwell Community History and Archives Service
Sandwell Community History and Archives Service (CHAS) is the archive service for the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell in the West Midlands of England. The service is based within Smethwick Library. It collects and preserves original archives and published material relating to the history of Sandwell. It is a local authority archive service, run and funded by Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council.
The service began in 1992, when the library service was restructured to create community libraries (rather than branch libraries). Before this date each of the six towns that make up Sandwell kept their own archive and local studies collections, and some of the libraries retain part of these collections more than 25 years later.
Sandwell Archives holds archive collections created by organisations, families and businesses based in Sandwell. The service is a Diocesan record office, holding Church of England parish records for the Deanery of Warley and All Saint’s Church, West Bromwich, as well as numerous non-conformist churches within Sandwell.
As a Place of Deposit for Public Records Sandwell Archives also holds records of local courts, coroners and hospitals. The service also holds the historical records of the former boroughs of Oldbury, Rowley Regis, Smethwick, Tipton, Warley, Wednesbury and West Bromwich.
Significant business collections held by the service include; Chance Brothers, Accles & Pollock, Patent Shaft and T. W. Camm.