|Held by:||London Metropolitan Archives: City of London, not available at The National Archives|
Few of the Provincial Secretary's files have survived. Those that have were deposited in the Greater London Record Office with the files of the Enquiry Department in November 1963 (Acc 1898).
By 1896 there were at least 70 Charity Organisation Societies in existence. The London C.O.S. had invented the name and set the example but the provincial societies had an extreme variety in aims, principles and methods of work. In 1892 the London C.O.S. established a Provincial Sub-Committee to correspond with associated societies in the provinces, to collect copies of their annual reports and other information concerning them and to give advice. Visits to local societies by London members were arranged and members of provincial societies visited London to gain experience of the London C.O.S. The first travelling secretary was appointed in 1907. The travelling secretaries visited and strengthened provincial charity organisation societies, in certain circumstances taking charge of an office for a time, for instance to assist in starting a new society or to initiate reforms in an older society or to carry on the work in an emergency.