The David Hardisty PAX Collection

Scope and Content

Copy of David Hardisty's undergraduate dissertation (Peace Studies, University of Bradford): History of PAX 1936-1945. Photocopies of PAX Bulletin 1936-1971, a few issues missing. Photocopies of PAX minutes 1936-1969, some missing. Pax Christi documents 1960s and 1970s (including Bulletins of the English section and meeting minutes and further PAX documents).

Administrative / Biographical History

PAX was formed in 1936 by a group of individuals who sought peace by practical application of Christian ethics, believing that modern warfare could no longer meet 'just war' criteria. It was inter-denominational though it had a strong Catholic focus. Close links were developed with other peace groups including the Anglican Pacifist Fellowship and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. The work of the Group during World War 2 included offering help to Catholic conscientious objectors. The influence of Eric Gill, the third Chairman of the group from 1938 to his death in 1940, broadened the group's concerns to cover Christian unity, anti-industrialism and social justice, although a minority of members were strongly opposed to these changes. Membership declined post-war, although the group continued to publish, but revived later in opposition to atomic weapons. In 1971, the group merged with international Catholic peace group, Pax Christi. This collection of photocopies of PAX and Pax Christi documents was created by Mr Hardisty to assist in his research for his undergraduate dissertation.

Access Information

Available to researchers, by appointment. Access to archive material is subject to preservation requirements and must also conform to the restrictions of the Data Protection Act and any other appropriate legislation.

Acquisition Information

Donated to Commonweal by David Hardisty.

Other Finding Aids

Basic handlist (June 2007).

Archivist's Note

Description by Alison Cullingford, using ISAD (G) 2, June 2007.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies may be supplied or produced at the discretion of Special Collections staff, subject to copyright law and the condition of the originals. Applications for permission to make published use of any material should be directed to the Special Collections Librarian in the first instance. The Library will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Location of Originals

Originals held by the Pax Christi Centre in London.


A detailed historical study of PAX: Flessati, Valerie. PAX: the history of a Catholic peace society in Britain 1936-1971. PhD thesis, University of Bradford, 1991.