The collection represents the archival papers of UCAC from 1940 to the 1980s. UCAC was the first trade union established in Wales in order to serve the needs of Welsh teachers, which would further the aims of the union in the world of Welsh medium teaching in Wales.
UCAC was established on the 6th Of December 1940 in a meeting in the Ty'r Cymry centre, Gordon Road, Cardiff, with Gwyn M. Daniel as the union's first General Secretary. The archive includes the papers kept there while it was the union's headquarters from its foundation until it moved its main office to Aberystwyth in 1983.
The establishment of a professional trade union was of the utmost importance to the founders, in order for it to contribute to the creation of a national movement in the education world in Wales which would discuss relevant matters in a Welsh context. Some of the main aims of the union's founders were to establish an independent educational system in Wales, and to promote the language and culture of Wales through pressing for education through the medium of Welsh and courses that would give appropriate attention to the history, geography and literature of Wales. As a result numerous references are seen in its Annual Conference to promoting bilingual education and Welsh medium schools, as well as dealing with other matters which affect education in Wales.
The archive represents a valuable resource for studying the Welsh language and culture in the twentieth century, and UCAC had a role in the campaign to win legal status for the Welsh language. The union's pioneering role as a national body for Wales means the archive is an important source for its political development in this period, and reflects obvious developments such as the growth of nationalism, establishing the Welsh Office and the post of Secretary of State for Wales, and the great changes that came in the wake of local government re-organisation, and it will be seen that UCAC has connections with almost every educational body in Wales. Nevertheless, education in Wales is the main subject of the union's papers, and that across all aspects, from nursery schools to adult education. Beyond the cultural, political and educational interests of its founders, and their followers, UCAC is seen as maturing as a professional trade union defending the interests of members and campaigning on their behalf, as well as providing services to its members.