Royal College of Nursing Council Meeting Papers

Scope and Content

Council was the first governing body of the College of Nursing and was established to oversee the setting up of the College. The formats of meetings changed significantly over time, with earlier meetings having less of a formal structure than later ones.

On the whole, papers of Council meetings include attendance lists; reports of the sections, departments and boards of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN); discussions about premises and staff; agendas for open and closed meetings; minutes of open and closed meetings; supporting papers relating to the College and professional nursing issues under discussion; reports of the standing committees of the RCN; copies of publications. From 1916-1981 no agendas, action sheets or loose supporting papers are included. From 1981 onwards the amount and quality of the supporting paperwork varies from year to year. Council minutes were circulated as print copies up to 2010 only and subsequently as electronic.

All volumes apart from the first (1916-1918) are indexed.

After 1939 these records relate to the Royal College of Nursing.

One copy set of Council minutes, which covers the dates 1916-2010, is kept in Store A. The other set, which covers 1916-2009 and includes original signed minutes, is kept in Store B. From 1998 there are also digital records from most years until 2009 when they become entirely digital born records.

Conditions Governing Access

Confidential business file closed for 20 years from last date in file. Contact archives@rcn.org.uk for access requests.

Other Finding Aids

Most recent online Royal College of Nursing Archives Catalogue is available at http://www.rcn.org.uk/development/library_and_heritage_services. Minutes indexed annually. Supporting papers have been ommitted from the index in years when funds have been short for indexing.

Conditions Governing Use

Royal College of Nursing

Custodial History

The main bulk of volumes, including original signed minutes, came from the London library historical collection to Edinburgh with the Archives' collections in 1992. The library maintained a copy set. From 1992 up until 2009 the papers were transferred directly by Council and Committee Admin (previously 'General Secretariat', or 'General Secretary's Office'). One copy went to RCN Library for binding and the original to Archives, unbound. In January 2017 all sets were brought together to create one full run of meeting papers and an additional run, which contains copies of most years. The more complete set is held in Store A and the less complete set, which includes original signed minutes, in Store B.