Papers relating to the East Midlands Universities Officers' Training Corps,1914-1985

Scope and Content

This collection constitutes papers relating to the East Midlands Universities Officers' TrainingCorps (formerly University College Nottingham OTC and University of Nottingham OTC). They werecompiled (with the exception of UN UU 8/9) by G.J. Eltringham who wrote a short history of theNottingham branch of the OTC in 1964. Eltringham joined the OTC in 1959 and later became commandingofficer and then Honorary Colonel. He held the position of Deputy Registrar within the University ofNottingham. The papers here are not the official archives of the OTC, only either historical itemssalvaged by Eltringham or records concerned with his own role in the Corps. The collectioncomprises:

  • Four issues of bulletins of University of Nottingham OTC. 1914 (UN UU 8/1);
  • Newspaper cuttings relating to University of Nottingham OTC. 1914-1962 (UN UU 8/2);
  • File of papers relating to University of Nottingham OTC policy including correspondence with theMinistry of Defence. 1963-1970 (UN UU 8/3);
  • File of papers relating to University of Nottingham OTC training programmes and courses.1961-1965 (UN UU 8/4);
  • File of University of Nottingham OTC camp instructions and miscellaneous papers. 1962-1969 (UN UU8/5);
  • File of papers relating to University of Nottingham OTC social functions. 1965-1967 (UN UU8/6);
  • Bundle of University of Nottingham OTC routine orders. 1964-1969 (UN UU 8/7);
  • Leaflets about University of Nottingham OTC. Undated and 1961-1962 (UN UU 8/8);
  • Photocopy of an attendance list for the University of Nottingham OTC Jubilee Dinner 1959.Undated, c.1985 (UN UU 8/9).
  • Volume of Nottingham University's Officers' Training Corps, 1909-1964 by G.J. Eltringham.1964 (UN UU 8/10);
  • Letter from G. Wilson Smith to G.J. Eltringham relating to the history of University ofNottingham OTC. 1965 (UN UU 8/11);
  • Copy of 'Reminiscences of University College Nottingham Senior Training Corps and Home GuardBattalion during the period October 1941 and July 1942' by J.H. Dawson. 1996 (UN UU 8/12);
  • Copy of notes about University of Nottingham OTC compiled by Major Sam Trotman after the firstworld war on officers and others that served in the corps. 1964 (UN UU 8/13).

Administrative / Biographical History

The Officers' Training Corps (OTC) of University College Nottingham (later The University ofNottingham) was formed in 1909. Originally, the college Senate restricted membership to current andpast students of the college as well as past pupils of Nottingham High School. The Corps' firstcommanding officer was Major Samuel Russell Trotman who instigated the publication of a printed'bulletin' from 1914, and remained in post until 1921. During the First World War, 1,600 OTC trainedcadets went into battle. Over 200 lost their lives and 500 were injured.

When the college moved from the centre of Nottingham to the Highfields Campus in 1926, a riflerange and an armoury were constructed for use by the OTC. Training took place on campus or in thecountryside near Bulwell, Nottinghamshire. The culmination of a year of training was an annual camp,often away from the county.

During the Second World War the OTC was called upon to be the nucleus of the local Home Guard.The armoury was converted to a guard room and all cadets were required to join the Home Guard. Theyalso conducted training for other Home Guard units in the area and the OTC's commanding officer alsohad the role of second-in-command of the Nottinghamshire Battalion Home Guard with the rank ofMajor.

In 1947, the OTC's name changed to University Training Corps (TA); the establishment was reducedto one company of infantry and one of REME; and, from April 1958, members of the Corps were to beenlisted in the Territorial Army. In 1949, training of women officers began at Nottingham and in1950 an Intelligence Corps sub-unit was established. The University Training Corps moved fromUniversity Park to Broadgate, Beeston in 1954 and in January 1955 its name reverted to Officers'Training Corps. The Signals and intelligence sub-units were closed down soon after as part of aneconomy drive within the British Army.

After a period of decline in the 1960s, the OTC was reorganised to incorporate students fromother universities in the region. It became the East Midlands Universities Officers' Training Corpsand increasingly began sharing accommodation and equipment with the Nottingham branch of theTerritorial Army. The OTC retains its affiliation with The University of Nottingham.


The collection has been divided by document type into series. Within these series, items havebeen arranged chronologically.

Access Information

ACCESS: Accessible to all registered readers.


Other Finding Aids

This description is the only finding aid available for the collection. Copyright in thedescription belongs to The University of Nottingham.

Conditions Governing Use

REPROGRAPHIC: Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposesonly, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

COPYRIGHT: Permission to make published use of any material from this collection must be soughtin advance in writing from the Keeper of the Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections(email The Department will try to assist in identifying copyright owners but the responsibility for copyright clearance before publication ultimately rests with the reader.

Custodial History

The collection was acquired in four parts by the University of Nottingham's Department ofManuscripts between November 1970 and December 2000.

Related Material

  • The University of Nottingham; Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections: Records ofthe Military Education Committee. 1924-19 Reference: UR 17


G.J. Eltringham, Nottingham University's Officers' Training Corps, 1909-1964(Nottingham: G.J. Eltringham, 1964)