Digitisation project 2018 to 2022

The Australian War Memorial has recently received funding for a four-year digitisation project running from 2018 to 2022. The project aims to digitise collection items at risk of deterioration, including paper records, film, audio, and images. This will help preserve the original items and allow the collection to be more broadly available to researchers into the future.

Second World War unit war diaries

The project intends to digitise the Memorial’s entire holdings of Second Australian Imperial Force and Citizen Military Forces unit war diaries from the archival series AWM52. Currently, only a small selection of unit war diaries from this area has been digitised and published online.

As the project progresses, items from AWM52 will be removed from public access to be prepared and digitised. The original diaries that have not been digitised will be available for viewing in the Research Centre’s Reading Room until they are removed from public access. Once a collection has been removed from public access, the original records will not be available until the digitised images are published on the Memorial’s website.

Below you can find details of when classes of AWM52 will be removed from public access. These dates are subject to change. To plan a visit to the Research Centre please read Accessing records at the Memorial first.

AWM52 Class 1

Headquarters Units


AWM52 Class 2



AWM52 Class 3

Armoured Corps


AWM52 Class 4



AWM52 Class 5



AWM52 Class 6



AWM52 Class 7



AWM52 Class 8


The following subclasses are available online

AWM52 8/2 Brigades

AWM52 8/3 Battalions

AWM52 8/5 Machine Gun Battalions and Regiments

Remaining subclasses are unavailable

AWM52 Class 9


Originals available for viewing, but anticipated to become unavailable from July 2019

AWM52 Class 10

Supplies and Transport

Originals available for viewing

AWM52 Class 11

Medical Originals available for viewing

AWM52 Class 12

Dental Originals available for viewing

Request for tender for digitisation of Second World War unit war diaries

The Memorial is seeking a service supplier to digitise the archival series AWM52 Second World War unit war diaries. The closing date is 24 May 2019.  For detailed information see the AusTender website here.