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Civil Liberties and Human Rights in Twentieth-Century Britain
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Book description

The National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL) was formed in the 1930s against a backdrop of fascism and 'popular front' movements. In this volatile political atmosphere, the aim of the NCCL was to ensure that civil liberties were a central component of political discourse. Chris Moores's new study shows how the NCCL - now Liberty - had to balance the interests of extremist allies with the desire to become a respectable force campaigning for human rights and civil liberties. From new social movements of the 1960s and 1970s to the formation of the Human Rights Act in 1998, this study traces the NCCL's development over the last eighty years. It enables us to observe shifts and continuities in forms of political mobilisation throughout the twentieth century, changes in discourse about extensions and retreats of freedoms, as well as the theoretical conceptualisation and practical protection of rights and liberties.


'… a revealing account of a long-lived NGO, with many insights into British politics and society through its lifetime. … Moores provides an excellent survey and analysis of the many, complex activities of NCCL/Liberty and its shifting fortunes over time.'

Pat Thane Source: Cercles

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  • Introduction
    pp 1-20

Albert Sloman Library, University of Essex, Colchester

  • Charter 88 Archive.

Black Cultural Archives, London

  • Ephemera (NCCL).

Bodleian Library, University of Oxford

  • Sankey Papers.

British Library of Political and Economic Science, London School of Economics

  • Vyvyan Adams Papers.

  • Hall Carpenter Archive.

  • The Progressive League Archive.

  • United Nations Association Archive.

Cambridge University Library, Cambridge

  • For Intellectual Liberty Papers.

Edinburgh University Library, Edinburgh

  • Arthur Koestler Papers.

Hull History Centre, Hull

  • Reginald Bridgeman Papers, Hull University Papers.

  • Justice Archive, Hull University Papers.

  • Liberty Archive, Hull University Papers.

  • Sylvia Scaffardi Papers, Hull University Papers.

International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam

  • Amnesty International Archive.

  • Dorothy Russell Papers.

Kings College London Archives, London

  • Basil Liddell Hart Papers.

  • British Institute for Human Rights Archives.

Labour History and Archive Centre, People’s History Centre, Manchester

  • Labour Party Archives.

  • Communist Party of Great Britain Archives.

Modern Records Centre, University of Warwick

  • Victor Gollancz Papers.

  • Trades Union Congress Archives.

National Archives, Kew

  • Cabinet Office Papers:

    • CAB 128/68/17: Conclusions, 13 November 1980.

    • CAB 129/161/12: European Convention on Human Rights.

    • CAB 129/210/16: European Convention on Human Rights.

  • Home Office Papers:

    • HO 45/25462: DISTURBANCES: The National Council for Civil Liberties: Reports on Activities, 1934–1936.

    • HO 45/25463: DISTURBANCES: The National Council for Civil Liberties: Reports on Activities, 1936–1940.

    • HO 45/25464: DISTURBANCES: The National Council for Civil Liberties: Reports on Activities, 1940–1941.

    • HO 45/25465: DISTURBANCES: The National Council for Civil Liberties: Reports on Activities, 1941–1951.

    • HO 325/40: Metropolitan Police report 'Police Involvement with Kenneth Joseph Lennon’.

    • HO 383/14: Sub-Committee on After Care: Discussions with Interested Parties and Individuals, National Council for Civil Liberties.

  • Foreign Office Papers:

    • FO 1110/145: National Council for Civil Liberties, 1948.

    • FO 317/107141: Publicity for Human Rights Day, 1953.

    • FO 317/112495: Publicity for Celebration of Human Rights Day, 1954.

    • FO 371/72722: Organization of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers, Third Congress Held in Prague, 1948.

    • FO 975/58: International Association of Democratic Lawyers.

  • Metropolitan Police Papers:

    • MEPO 2/3089: Fascist Meeting at Albert Hall and complaint of Police Action in Thurloe Square.

    • MEPO 2/10489: Race Relations Act 1965. Commissioner’s and Solicitor’s observations on the proposed Bill, amendment to police general orders 1965.

    • MEPO 3/553: Activities of Ronald Kidd Secretary of the National Council for Civil Liberties, 1930–1936.

  • Records of the Prime Minister’s Office:

    • PREM 19/588. SECURITY. Sir Peter Hayman.

  • Records of the Security Service:

    • KV 2/994: Wilfred Fauston Vernon.

    • KV 2/996: Wilfred Fauston Vernon.

    • KV 2/1063: Denis Nowell Pritt.

    • KV 2/1064: Denis Nowell Pritt.

    • KV 2/1065: Denis Nowell Pritt.

    • KV 2/1378: William Henry Thompson.

    • KV 2/2093: Basil Kingsley Martin.

    • KV: 2/2159: William Dudley Collard.

    • KV 2/2160: William Dudley Collard.

    • KV 2/3595: Neil Lawson.

    • KV 4/4043: Martin Ennals.

    • KV 4/4044: Martin Ennals.

    • KV 4/4045: Martin Ennals.

  • Records of the Treasurer Solicitor and HM Prosecutor General:

    • TS 58/800: Proof of Evidence, Witness Details, Schedule of Challenor’s Cases Submitted by the National Council for Civil Liberties.

National Library of Scotland

  • Peter Ritchie-Calder Papers.

Working Class Movement Library

  • Angela Tuckett Papers.

  • Anna Coote.

  • Bill Forrester.

  • John Gouriet.

  • Martin Loney.

  • Bill Nash.

  • Sarah Spencer.

  • Civil Liberty.

  • Civil Liberties.

  • Civil Liberty.

  • The Daily Herald.

  • The Daily Telegraph.

  • The Daily Worker.

  • Freedom First.

  • The Free Nation.

  • The Guardian.

  • The Herald.

  • The Independent.

  • Interights Bulletin.

  • Marxism Today.

  • The Manchester Guardian.

  • The Morning Star.

  • NCCL Bulletin.

  • The New Left Review.

  • No2ID Newsletter.

  • The Observer.

  • Rights.

  • The Times.

  • Tribune.

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