Papers of Arabella Kurdi

Scope and Content

Papers relating to work with the BFES in Germany, 1947-1951, and to the social and living conditions in post-War Germany. These include an album of photographs of conditions in Germany, of friends and colleagues and of BFES schools; correspondence, including letters from Arabella to her parents describing her work and experiences in Germany; material relating to the school meals service, including a recipe book; notes for a lecture on 'Working and living in Germany'; printed material, including a map of BFES schools and copies of the BFES Gazette.

Administrative / Biographical History

The British Families Education Service (BFES) was established by the Foreign Office in 1946 to provide schooling for the children of British families stationed in the British Zone of Germany after the Second World War, and amidst the post-War devastation. In the winter of 1951-1952 it was taken over by the Army and became Service Children's Education. Arabella Kurdi, then Pallister, went to Germany in February 1947 and worked as School Meals and Domestic Science Organiser for the Service. As such she travelled widely within the British Zone and visited many schools and different areas of the country.

Access Information


Open, subject to signature of Reader Application Form.

Acquisition Information

Given by Arabella Kurdi in 2002.

Other Finding Aids

Electronic and paper lists.

Conditions Governing Use

A reader wishing to publish any quotation of information, including pictorial, derived from any archive material must apply in writing for prior permission from the Archivist or other appropriate person(s) as indicated by the Archivist. A limited number of photocopies may be supplied at the discretion of the Archivist.

Related Material

The Institute of Education also holds the records of the BFES/SCE Association (DC/BFE), the papers of Mimi Hatton (DC/MH), and the papers of James Lumsden (DC/LUM).

Material elsewhere-

National Army Museum holds the following school log books:

Munster Lager School: January 1947-December 1977

Hildesheim School: March 1947-October 1977; January 1978-July 1993 (school closed at this point)

Lippstadt School: January 1948-October 1966; October 1966-August 1977; September 1977-April 1993 (school closed at this point)

Soltau School (renamed Jerboa School in 1974) - February 1952-February 1975; February 1975-December 1983; January 1984-March 1993 (school closed at this point)

Trenchard School Gutersloh (opened 1947 and possibly renamed Haig in 1971) - January 1966-August 1968; September 1971-August 1987; September 1987-July 1993 (school closed at this point)

Fleming School Herford - September 1969-December 1984

Dannenberg School January 1979-December 1984

St Peter's School Lubbecke: April 1988-July 1992 (school closed at this point)

The National Archives hold official records of the BFES (ref ED121; ED193; FO944/944; FO1013/1464; FO1014/877; WO163/580; WO32/20796)