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Official: Committee of Imperial Defence, 1909 - 1914

Reference Code: GBR/0014/CHAR 24

Scope and Contents

The Committee of Imperial Defence papers contain correspondence, notes and prints, acquired or produced by WSC in his capacity as a member of the Committee rather than as a Departmental Minister. They therefore include papers on topics both within and outside the province of WSC's departments (he was during this period: President of the Board of Trade, 12 April 1908 - 14 February 1910; Home Secretary, 14 February 1910 - 23 October 1911; and First Lord of the Admiralty, 23 October 1911 - 25 May 1915).The Committee of Imperial Defence was established permanently in 1904, as a small flexible advisory committee to the Prime Minister; members were usually cabinet ministers concerned with defence, military leaders, and key civil servants. During the war, its functions were taken over by the War Council, then the Dardanelles Committee, the War Committee and finally the War Cabinet.The papers have been divided into correspondence and subject-based files, and arranged chronologically. Subjects include: aircraft development; the Forth-Clyde canal; national service; naval bases and naval strategy; the German Army and Navy; the wartime food supply; home defence.


  • Creation: 1909 - 1914

Conditions Governing Access

From the Fonds:

The Churchill Papers are made available to researchers using Churchill Archives Centre and worldwide in digital format. The digital edition of the Churchill Papers is published by Bloomsbury Academic and is available online to subscribing institutions at The Churchill archive is freely available in our reading rooms and onsite at Churchill College (via the Churchill College wireless network). Researchers can download images of documents directly from and so are encouraged to consider bringing a laptop or other device for this purpose. For conservation reasons, the fragile originals are no longer issued to researchers.

This digital edition is open to researchers unless otherwise marked in the catalogue. Some material has been closed by the Cabinet Office or by Churchill Archives Centre in accordance with data protection legislation.

Language of Materials


Repository Details

Part of the Churchill Archives Centre Repository

Churchill Archives Centre
Churchill College
Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB3 0DS United Kingdom
+44 (0)1223 336087