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New educational resource on Attlee's Britain
26 June 2013
The National Archives has today published a collection of documents for teachers and students relating to Attlee's Britain 1945-51, called 'Planning for the future?'. The collection documents the birth of modern Britain, with the introduction of the welfare state, including the foundation of the National Health Service, and the wide nationalisation of industries. It also highlights post-war struggles, such as rationing and the housing shortage after the Blitz.
The collection allows students and teachers to develop their own questions and lines of historical enquiry on Attlee's Britain. The documents are arranged according to theme, and all sources and transcripts are now also available as zip files for easy use by teachers in the classroom.
The resource has an introduction by Dr Robert Crowcroft, Lecturer in Contemporary History at Edinburgh University and author of Attlee's War: World War II and the Making of a Labour Leader.
Highlights from the collection
- Illustration of The British Scene: Community centre 1939-1946, by A.H. Hall (INF 3/1741), encapsulating hopes for the future
- A cartoon from the Daily Worker showing the mines under new management (CAB 21/2207)
- Extract from a transcript of an interview with RAB Butler and Richard Montague Smith, a reporter from The Daily Mail (ED 121/202), including RAB Butler's thinking on the history curriculum and the aims of the Education Act in 1944
- Extract from the diary of Guy Liddell, Deputy Director General of the Security Service (KV 4/468), including a description of Attlee
- Suggested notes for the Prime Minister's intervention in the National Health Service debate (MH 135/785)