A selection of files recently released at The National Archives

October 2006

Return to list
Catalogue ref. Date Description
Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies
ADM 1/29240 1956-1978 Cdr L K P Crabb, OBE GM RNVRFile relating to Buster Crabb, including a letter from a clairvoyant and discussions around evidence to be submitted at the inquest, in particular that of the person who assisted him in his dive when he went missing - the last person to see him alive.
Records of the Cabinet Office
CAB 134/1168 1954 - 1955 Steel Committee: Ministerial Committee on Security: Papers 1-3 (1954); Meetings 1-2 (1955); Paper 1 (1955)Meeting notes relating to the positive vetting of employees, expressing particular concerns with members of the Communist party.
Records created and inherited by the Foreign Office
FO 115/4540 1954 Atomic energy: exchange of information; effects of atomic weaponsRelates to the effects of atomic weapons. Mainly contains correspondence between MOD and British embassy in Washington DC.
FO 115/4543 1954 Atomic energy: co-operation with USAContains discussions on the possibility of co-operation on atomic energy between the UK and USA. Also holds policies for peaceful use of atomic energy and papers on uranium for commercial purposes.
FO 115/4544 1954 Atomic energy: co-operation with USA; amendments to Atomic Energy Act 1946 (McMahon Act)File contains extensive correspondence between British embassy in Washington DC and the Foreign Office regarding the proposed amendments to the US Atomic Energy Act 1946, which include an increase in the co-operation between the USA and its allies in the development and proliferation of nuclear technology. This includes the text of the amended act, reports of the relevant US committee on Atomic energy as well as the text of President Eisenhower's original proposals.
FO 371/128663 1957 Leading personalities in HungaryPreparation of annual reports on Hungarian personalities for 1956.
Records created or inherited by the Home Office, Ministry of Home Security, and related bodies
HO 144/21930 1925-1944 PRISONS AND PRISONERS: Forcible feeding of prisoners on hunger strikeCorrespondence relating to the possibility of force-feeding prisoners held abroad. Contains lists of prisoners who went on hunger strike, including a list of suffragettes.
HO 144/22954 1921-1947 CRIMINAL: John Foster alias Cook alias Gasken, habitual criminal and escapee from Dartmoor 1931 and 1932: convicted of mail train robberies, 1947File relating to the activities of notorious prison breaker John Foster.
Records of the Metropolitan Police Office
MEPO 3/1909 1939 Irish Republican Army (IRA) activities: protection of Houses of ParliamentFile relating to extra provision for opening of Parliament following recent attacks by the IRA.
MEPO 3/996 1937 Importuning by boys in Trafalgar Square: Dorothea Maitland's storyReports relating to a Scottish teenager who comes to London (Trafalgar Square) to make money in the underground sex industry.
Records created or inherited by the War Office, Armed Forces, Judge Advocate General, and related bodies
WO 195/16453 1967 Biological Research Advisory Board: MRE Report number 41 (annual report for 1966)File contains a detailed breakdown of research activities at Porton Down on Biological agents for use as weapons. This includes details and technical specifications of the amounts of various biological agents produced, methods of detection and extensive reports of research into the detection and effects of such agents on animals. Also provides a summary assessing the unlikelihood that UK could be adequately protected from all biological attacks.
WO 195/16492 1967 Biological Research Advisory Board: MRE Report number 41/1File contains a paper on research into the detection of biological agents in the atmosphere, detailing various methods for collection and their relative advantages/disadvantages.
WO 32/19335 1960-1967 Selection of staff for central government HQ in war and arrangements for Civil Service personnel in warFile contains extensive details on the procedures and requirements for selecting staff to man the UK government in the event of general war. Reports include specific lists from various departments of nominees to work at the BURLINGTON/TURNSTILE site as well as the criteria for selection (i.e., young, single staff). Also contains pro forma information sheets to issue to such staff in the event of them being needed.
WO 32/20122 1960-1962 Central government in global war: manning of headquartersFile contains discussions relating to the issue of military versus civilian discipline at STOCKWELL site. Also discusses some practical issues such as rationing, cash availability, vehicle procurement, provision of ID cards etc.
WO 32/20504 1955-1968 War Office planning for the maintenance of government in warFile contains extensive contingency measures in the event of war relating to the Regional Government Seats and TURNSTILE organisation. Also details army role in the event of an attack, describing recommended shelter procedures as well as likely effects. The file also includes a discussion around the provisions for central government not involved in an organised evacuation. In addition there is a brief note of total food ration stockpiles at the time.
WO 32/20841 1961-1966 TURNSTILE: manningDetails of the activation of the TURNSTILE site including a breakdown of departmental contingencies, code words to signal the initiation of an emergency situation and practical arrangements for movement and the problems this posed. Also details of some of the necessary equipment required to stock the site and general plans for the continuation of government in the event of nuclear war.