WAR CHARITIES

Scope and Content

War Charities Act 1940 (3&4 Geo 6 c 31) prohibited public appeals for money (eg bazaars) for war charities unless charity was registered or exempted; registration authorities could exempt charities with limited areas/times/aims/sums of money, in fact most local wartime charities

County councils were designated registration authorities and required to keep registers and send copies to the Charities Commmission

The majority of local charities registered or exempted under the scheme were homecomforts or parcel funds for local servicemen overseas or other groups (e.g. POWs); towards the end of the war they consisted primarily of homecoming funds

Registration files under 1940 Act include: registration forms (name/aims of charity, names/addresses/occupations of officials/sponsors, dates est/reg); police letters of certification (written by local constable/sergeant, endorsed/forwarded by station superintendant & chief constable); stencilled applications; newspaper adverts; clerk's letters confirming registration, receipt of application fee (5s) & forwarding copy of registration to Charities Commission

Exemption files under 1940 Act include: exemption forms (name/aims of charity, names/addresses/occupations of officials/sponsors, dates est/exemption); stencilled application forms (name/aims of charity, names/addresses/occupations of officials/sponsors, area/period of appeals, amount expected to be raised, reason for claiming exemption); clerk's letter/cert of exemption; police reports (some detailed investigations which provide an insight into local activities/individuals; concerned at level of intrusion/bureaucracy but need to control unscrupulous individuals/fraud)