Winchester City Council – Microfiche Scanning

Project Background

Winchester City Council serves a population of 122,000 residents in central Hampshire. Microfiche Scanning Services

As part of a large data cleansing exercise, the Council wanted to convert their legacy microfiche records for Planning and Local Land Charges into digital format.

The council were faced with the issue of ageing microfiche records, which could potentially have reached a point of being too old to read, as well as deteriorating microfiche reading equipment.

Going digital would allow them to make the microfiche records digitally accessible across the whole council, allowing fast access and easy retrieval to their legacy planning and local land charges records. In turn, this would also save valuable time and money in physically accessing records.


  • Cleardata’s Account Manager surveyed the records and provided test scanning to ensure quality and indexing requirements were met.
  • Over 80,000 combination diazo microfiche were collected using its fleet of tracked vehicles.
  • The microfiche were checked in using secure barcode management to provide a full audit trail during the digitisation process.
  • Throughout the project scan on demand retrieval was available to the Council, to provide fast access to the local land charges and planning records.
  • Fiche were scanned using specialist Sunrise Apollo HS scanners, utilising an adjustable true optical platform to enable images to be output at a true dpi.
  • Images output to 200 dpi.
  • Fiche scanned to multipage PDF and indexed by title and reference number.
  • Images were quality checked by two separate operatives to ensure the highest level of scanning.
  • Data was securely returned by SFTP.

Customer Feedback

“We found Cleardata easy to work with for Winchester City Council’s Microfiche Scanning Project, with their team providing regular communication to us throughout the various phases of work.

To carry on with business as usual, we needed access to some of the planning and local land charges records whilst they were offsite and this was possible using Cleardata’s scan on demand service.  Their bureau reacted quickly to our file requests which were sent back digitally when needed.  The quality of digitised microfiche was very good and the project was delivered on time to meet our timescales.”  Local Land Charges Manager, Winchester City Council