Collection of British war posters produced during the Second World War, 1940-1945

Scope and Content

The posters cover many aspects of domestic life during the Second World War. Some provide colourful images and slogans to get across simple messages encouraging people to contribute to the war effort. Examples of well-known series are included, such as 'Dig for Victory', 'Careless Talk Costs Lives', and 'Make-do and Mend'. Other posters are in the style of broadsheets, providing detailed reports on the progress of the war, or instructions for the use of particular equipment.

Administrative / Biographical History

Various Ministries within the British government produced information posters throughout the course of the Second World War. Posters in this collection were issued by the Ministry of Works and Planning, the Ministry of Home Security, the Ministry of Fuel and Power, the Ministry of Supply, the Ministry of War Transport, the Admiralty, the Ministry of Labour and National Service, the Ministry of Information, the Ministry of Health, and the Board of Trade


The posters have been arranged by subject matter and the Ministry responsible for their production

Conditions Governing Access

Accessible to all registered 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

On the World Wide Web:

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

The typescript catalogue is also available online on the national A2A (Access to Archives) website

Conditions Governing Use

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational and private study purposes only, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult.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 writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections

Custodial History

The posters were formerly in the possession of Professor Vivian de Sola Pinto of The University of Nottingham. They were found in a packing case in which a donation of Pinto library materials to the University were packed, and were acquired by The University of Nottingham's Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections in June 1977.


Published online through the website Windows On War