Records of the Subsidiary Problems Committee of the Royal College of Midwives

Scope and Content

This collection comprises minutes, correspondence and reports of the Subsidiary Problems Committee of the Royal College of Midwives (formally known as the Midwives Institute) (1929-1943), relating to the formulation of policy and organisation of lectures on methods of birth control, with particular references to motives for family limitation, the need for legislation on abortion and the sale of contraception.

Administrative / Biographical History

In April 1929 the sub-Committee on Birth Control was set up by the Royal College of Midwives (formally known as the Midwives Institute), to study the problems arising from the practice of criminal abortions, and to formulated policy on contraception.

The Subsidiary Problems Committee, as it became known from 1937, which met quarterly to discuss, as well as arrange courses of lectures on the economic, medical and ethic aspects of the question of birth control.


The original order of material is retained, although where this is not possible the arrangement of files has been based on the functions and activities of the organisation as well as chronology, subject and the needs of users.

Conditions Governing Access

Permission is required for external access to records less than twenty years old. Also restrictions apply if material includes personal information of living individuals. All other records are open to research by appointment, Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm. For further information about accessing the collection and visiting the reading room, please contact:

Acquisition Information

There is no record of the source or date of acquisition before this material was deposited under the terms of a collection care agreement at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in May 2011.


Catalogued by Clare Sexton, Project Archivist in accordance with ISAD(G).

Other Finding Aids

Further details of the contents of this collection are available on request.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright belongs to the Royal College of Midwives. To reproduce this material, please apply via the College Archivist:

Custodial History

This collection was previously held at the Royal College of Midwives.