Zuckerman Archive: Ministry of Fuel and Power Oil Storage Committee

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 1187 SZ/MP
  • Dates of Creation
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      1 box; two files; 1.5 linear feet

Scope and Content

The contents consist of a small quantity of correspondence relating to Solly Zuckerman's appointment as Chairman, and the report of the Committee.

Administrative / Biographical History

In the aftermath of the Suez Crisis of 1956 and the consequent closure of the Suez Canal, and instability in the states of the Persian Gulf area in 1958, the British government devoted much attention to methods of reducing ... dependence on Middle East Oil. [Letter, Lord Mills, Minister of Power, to SZ, 9 July 1958]. Towards this objective, Lord Mills set up a committee, chaired by Solly Zuckerman, To examine the possible methods of storing, primarily as a reserve against interruption of imported supplies in peace, substantial additional stocks of oil in the United Kingdom and to report on the relative advantages, financial and otherwise, of the various methods. [ibid.]

The original membership consisted of representatives of the major oil companies, and Sir William Pugh, Director of the Geological Survey. The Committee reported in October 1959, and concluded that the only sound methods of storing large reserve stocks of oil in the U.K. at present are conventional steel tanks and salt cavities. It also favoured crude oil as the main part of a reserve and urged full use of suitable vacant Government storage capacity and no disposal of Government storage surplus to defence requirements... without prior consideration of its suitability for peacetime reserves.


  • SZ/MP/1 Correspondence, 1958-59, 1979
  • SZ/MP/2 Documents, 1959

Access Information

Please refer to the fonds-level description for GB 1187 SZ.



Conditions Governing Use

Please refer to the fonds-level description for GB 1187 SZ.