Twentieth Century Theatre Papers, 1929-1976

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The first, and as yet the major, element in the collection comprises the literary papers and correspondence of Charles Montagu Slater, 1929-1976 (Tw T 1).

A second group contains miscellaneous printed programmes and papers concerning 20th century theatrical productions, 1940-1948 (Tw T 2).

There is also a series of play scripts used by Nottingham Playhouse, c.1965-1979 (Tw T 4).

Administrative / Biographical History

The Twentieth Century Theatre Papers is an artificial group, established in 1985 to provide an overall grouping in which occasional accruals concerning theatrical works and the history of the stage could be placed. The English Department of the University and the Library agreed to collect research and literary papers of relevant individuals and groups, with a particular focus on writers with left-wing sympathies and associations. The first element of the collection was the papers of Charles Montagu Slater.

Although the Library has indeed acquired further collections in this subject area, many of them are primarily concerned with poetry rather than the stage and have been listed under the individual names of the writers.


Each element within the overall collection is a discrete sub-group, with a numerical sub-reference to distinguish it.

Conditions Governing Access

Accessible to all readers.

Other Finding Aids

Copyright in all Finding Aids belongs to the University of Nottingham.

In the Reading Room, King's Meadow Campus:

Typescript Catalogue to item level, 22 pp

At the National Register of Archives, The National Archives, Kew:

Typescript Catalogue to item level, 22 pp


Catalogue available through the website of Manuscripts and Special Collections, Manuscripts Online Catalogue.

Conditions Governing Use

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email

Photocopies and photographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

Custodial History

The establishment of the collection known as the Twentieth Century Theatre Papers followed collaboration in 1985 between the English Department of the University and the Library. Whether new accessions in this subject area are added as elements to Tw T Papers or receive their own collection references varies depends upon the size of the holding, the extent to which it concerns drama and the stage, and its relevance to other collections.