Papers of the Devlin Commission on Industrial and Commercial Representation, and the Advice Centre on the Organisation of Industrial and Commercial Representation

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

MSS.230: Papers circulated to Chairman and Members, 1969-1972; correspondence and subject files with: UK organisations, 1971-1972; European organisations, 1971-1972; national associations and councils, 1971-1972; linking Chambers of Commerce, 1971-1972; Trades Union Congress, National Economic Development Council and CIR, 1971-1972; survey of CBI small firms; files relating to the preparation of the Devlin Report; publications and printed materials.

MSS.230B: Minutes, including the Advice Centre Consultative Board, 1975-1977; other boards and committees, 1973-1977. Correspondence and subject files including Devlin Commission subject files, 1946-1978 (predominant 1970-1972); files on the 'Turnberry Concept', 1972-1975; other correspondence and subject files, 1971-1982; Standard Industrial Classification files in two series, 1970-1981, (predominant 1975-1981). Notes for publications, 1974-1981; Advice Centre publications, 1976-1981; questionnaire returns, 1970-1981.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Devlin Commission on Industrial and Commercial Representation was established in December 1970 to examine the effectiveness of commercial and industrial representation in the United Kingdom. The Inquiry, headed by Lord Devlin and sponsored by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and the Association of British Chambers of Commerce (ABCC), was financed by a fund raised for the purpose directly from companies. The Commission published its Report in November 1972.

The Advice Centre on the Organisation of Industrial and Commercial Representation was established on a pilot basis by the CBI and the ABCC in 1974 with a part time staff of two and a secretary headed by the Principal m Mr Thomas Cameron Fraser. The Centre was set up on the recommendation of the Devlin Commission. The Devlin Commission had hoped to publish a register of all existing trade associations and employers' organisations as an appendix to its Report of 1972. The Commission was unable to complete the register in the time, and so the Report expressed a hope that the Advice Centre would build on the Commission's information to create a full record of the representative organisations. The Advice Centre also undertook to advise associations contemplating mergers or restructuring. The work of the Advice Centre resulted in the periodical publication of the Sectoral Representation of British Industry and Commerce editions. In 1975 the Centre was formally constituted with a Board.

Reference: Advice Centre on the Organisation of Industrial and Commercial Representation, The Sectoral Representation of British Industry and Commerce. A guide to employers' organisations and trade associations in the United Kingdom and links between them. (London. 1976).

Arrangement

The archive was received in three deposits. The first two deposits made in 1981 and 1982 (MSS.230), consist mainly of papers of the Devlin Commission on Industrial and Commercial Representation. The third deposit made in 1984 (MSS.230B) comprises mainly the papers of the Advice Centre.

The Modern Records Centre uses a classification scheme. For further details of the scheme, see http://www.warwick.ac.uk/services/library/mrc/mrcclass.shtml. It is compatible with ISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description (2000).

Conditions Governing Access

The papers are closed for 30 years with the exception of printed materials. Access may be granted if an undertaking is signed not to reveal names of respondents and to present figures in aggregated form.

Acquisition Information

This collection was deposited in the Centre by the Advice Centre between 1981 and 1984.

Other Finding Aids

The collection is currently being catalogued. A paper list is available for MSS.230 in the Modern Records Centre.

Authority records exist for the Commission of Inquiry into Industrial and Commercial Representation (GB 152 AAR1584) and the Advice Centre on the Organisation of Industrial and Commercial Representation, (GB 0152 AAR1585).

Conditions Governing Use

Requests for photocopying must be made to the Confederation of British Industry (CBI). All publications must be submitted to the Advice Centre before publication. Please contact the Modern Records Centre's staff for details.

Appraisal Information

The collection has been weeded for duplicates and routine correspondence and some printed ephemera.

Accruals

Further deposits are not expected.

Related Material

Papers of the Devlin Committee chaired by Lord Devlin regarding the port transport industry are also held at the Modern Records Centre in the Papers Relating to Trade Unionism in British Docks 1981-1985 (MSS.371/QD7).