In April 2008, Churchill Archives Centre releases the first papers from the archive of Lord Hailsham.
This is the culmination of a three and a half year project: a year was spent sorting the entire archive of approximately 1000 boxes and two and a half years cataloguing the diaries and political correspondence prior to release. A total of 450 boxes of papers are being made available to researchers for the first time and highlights of the collection include:
An introduction to the political diaries by Christopher Collins and digitised extracts from them are available on the Margaret Thatcher Foundation website.
More images from the Hailsham Papers covering the Oxford By-election of 1938 can also be seen on our education website, the Churchill Era.
Throughout his career, Lord Hailsham used a system called Speedwriting for making notes. Although Speedwriting is a proprietary system - developed in the United States in the 1920s - it is designed to be customised by the individual, and so is challenging for others to interpret.
The Archives Centre is keen to transcribe key entries written in Speedwriting in Lord Hailsham's recently released political diaries, 1970-9. A changing array of entries will be posted on this site and we invite you to contact us by email with proposed transcriptions.
The first entry, dated 10 January 1974, concerns a conversation with Peter Carrington and begins: "Carrington said to me this afternoon that we must now have a General Election. Pollsters said that if we went now we should win."
Further information about Speedwriting and various tools to aid in deciphering it are available on the Margaret Thatcher Foundation website.
For further information about the collection, please contact:
Churchill Archives Centre
Cambridge CB3 0DS
Telephone: (01223) 336166
Fax: (01223) 336135
Email: Sophie Bridges