Scope and Content

Ten files (numbered DCA/19/670) refer to the development of educational policy. The ambiguity between education and training is reflected in the /670 file titles: some reference "Education", and others "Training". Files reference engagement with a predictable range of educational bodies (the Royal College of Art, London County Council Central School of Arts & Crafts, the Ministry of Education, the National Advisory Council on Art Education, the National Council for Diplomas in Art and Design), as well as international focus groups such as ICSID and ICOGRADA. The production of educational resources such as design folios, filmstrips, and later on the Council"s "Directory of UK Design Courses" is also covered. A number of files reference the Council"s interest in Colour, as well as the role of design outdoors (see Pedestrianisation, Street Furniture, Public Spaces, Department of the Environment, Farm Buildings). Changes in the focus of industrial agendas, prompted by growing awareness of the importance of design, may be traced through an evolving terminology, from the association of industrial design with engineering, to the management of engineering design, and finally the management of innovation. Beyond the manufacturing sector, training was delivered to retailers on the subjects of display, carpets, furniture, furnishing and dress fabrics, pottery and glass, interior decoration and kitchen planning. A small number of files document Design Centre exhibitions intended to raise awareness of important design-related issues: examples include Design for the Disabled, Europe, and Flame Retardant Fabrics.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Council"s entire raison d"être was broadly educational. It sought to raise awareness of design issues among manufacturers, retailers, educators and the general public. However, by the 1950s any live file sequences relating to the training of industrial designers, which had previously been held in DCA/7, were transferred across to DCA/19. Later on the series is closely associated with the work of the Training Services Section, formed in the financial year 1970-1971, as a part of the Industrial Division.


The surviving files have been retained in their original numeric order as allocated by the Council's Registry. This means that records in a series do not necessarily have consecutive file numbers, and may not be located together.

Archivist's Note

Record created by Lesley Whitworth, with minor amendments by Sue Breakell, 10 August 2010.

Related Material

A small number of early files relating explicitly to debates about the training of industrial designers are located in DCA/7.

Reference to educational initiatives may also be found in DCA/13 on courses, congresses, conferences and competitions.


Woodham, Jonathan, 'The Consumers of the Future: The Council of Industrial Design and Educational Strategies for Schools, 1944 to the late 1950s', in J. Pavitt (ed), 'Object Lesson: The Camberwell Collection', London: The London Institute, 1996, 16-25

Whitworth, Lesley, "Anticipating Affluence: Skill, Judgement and the Problems of Aesthetic Tutelage' in L. Black and H. Pemberton (eds), 'An Affluent Society? Britain's Post-War 'Golden Age' Revisited', Aldershot: Ashgate, 2004, 167-183.

Whitworth, Lesley, "Promoting Product Quality: the Co-op and the Council of Industrial Design", in Lawrence Black and Nicole Roberts (eds), 'Taking Stock: The Co-operative Movement in Twentieth Century Britain', Manchester: Manchester University Press, (forthcoming).

Pavitt, Jane, 'An Experiment in Design Appreciation: The Formation and Development of the London County Council Circulating Design Scheme', in J. Pavitt (ed), 'Object Lesson: The Camberwell Collection', London: The London Institute, 1996, 4-15.