Catalogue description Air Ministry and Ministry of Defence: Registered Files

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Details of AIR 2
Reference: AIR 2
Title: Air Ministry and Ministry of Defence: Registered Files

Files of registered correspondence of the Air Ministry, including records which originated in the War Office, the Admiralty and the two Air Boards which preceded the Air Ministry.

The series comprises policy, case, committee and miscellaneous papers and reports over the whole range of British air administration and related topics.

With the unification of the Ministry of Defence in 1964, the Air Ministry became the Air Department of the Ministry of Defence, its registered files are generally to be found thereafter in DEFE 71, but there is some overlap with this series.

Records within this series are available to download as digital microfilm.

Date: 1887-1995

In the original, typescript, catalogue, the files now in AIR 2/1-13508 were listed under subject headings. Two slightly different sets of subjects (the earlier 'Code A' and the later 'Code B') were used; the two overlap in date during the 1930s.

In the online catalogue, the catalogue entries have been combined, so that there is one catalogue entry for each file.

  • Code A sequence 1 (files registered up to 1930): each box is an orderable piece; each file within the box is numbered as an item using the Air Ministry's original file numbers. Certain files were annexed to other files; in these cases, each file is catalogued as a separate item but the top file is cross-referenced with the others.
  • Code A sequence 2 (files registered 1930-1939): each file is a separately orderable piece.
  • Code B sequence (files registered 1936-1953): each file is a separately orderable piece.

From AIR 2/13509 onwards, subject heading were not used; most of these files in this fourth sequence were registered after 1953 but a few are earlier in date. Again, each file is a separately orderable piece.

Separated material:

Excluded from this series are a large number of important papers collected for use in the official history of the Department. These have been kept separate by the Historical Branch of the Air Ministry and have been placed in:

AIR 20

Records of MOD(Air) department branches DEFE 71



Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English

Admiralty, Air Department, 1910-1918

Air Board, 1916-1918

Air Ministry, 1918-1964

Ministry of Defence, 1947-

War Office, 1857-1964

Physical description: 20594 file(s)
Access conditions: Available in digital format unless otherwise stated
Immediate source of acquisition:

From 1978 Ministry of Defence

Accruals: Series is accruing

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