Catalogue description Civil Service Commission: Regulations, Rules and Memoranda, Open and Limited Competitions

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Details of CSC 6
Reference: CSC 6
Title: Civil Service Commission: Regulations, Rules and Memoranda, Open and Limited Competitions

This series contains copies of the regulations, rules and memoranda set by the Civil Service Commission for competition for entry into the Civil Service, both the diplomatic service and the home service, and for civilian posts in the armed forces. The records cover both the open and limited competitions for non-industrial staff.

There is often an overlap in the coverage of the material but the following distinctions are generally true. Regulations detail procedure for application and appointment. Information pertaining to application includes the date of the examination, or interview, and the final date (when one is mentioned) that the application had to reach the Commission. Requirements of the prospective candidate might include educational qualifications; proven experience; limits of age, race, nationality, gender or marital status; sound health; acceptance of an overseas posting or future redeployment. These requirements reflect the social, legal and ethical conditions that the Commission was bound by at a specific time. Rules explain the format of examinations and give an indication of what candidates might expect and what was expected of them. Memoranda frequently contain similar information but as amendments to existing regulations or rules. They are also used as a reminder to staff of the sequence of events leading up to a given examination or interview.

Date: 1863-1991

The filing and arrangement of the records has been inconsistent and not always intelligible. This may be owing to changes in recruitment policy and thereby changes in the way documents were referenced or accessed, but at times it appears to have been simply poor filing practice. Each competition was assigned a paper number and listed. Paper numbers tend to reflect the contemporary method of arrangement. This practice was abandoned with CSC 6/79. Between CSC 6/1 and CSC 6/43 documents are arranged by date of examination or the date of memorandum. Each piece covers a period from one year up to a span of several. For CSC 6/44-52 this is simplified to papers being arranged by month. Here a piece is equal to a year. From 1947 (CSC 6/53) until 1963 (CSC 6/68) the order of documents within piece numbers alters frequently. During this period competition numbers for each vacancy are introduced and letter prefixes (a short-hand reference to a broad area, such as 'S' for Science) to these begin to appear. Broadly speaking, between CSC 6/53 and CSC 6/62 the documents are arranged by month but with a general section (which becomes increasingly larger) placed first consisting of non-specified date, reconstruction and limited competitions. Between CSC 6/63 and CSC 6/68 arrangement by month is not consistently used (sometimes replaced with no obvious form of arrangement).

From 1964 (CSC 6/69) the arrangement of the records begins to settle. CSC 6/69-73 are arranged by month. From CSC 6/74 to CSC 6/78 there is a sub-arrangement by competion number within arrangement by month (this now clearly being based upon closing date for application). CSC 6/79 to CSC 6/81 follow the same arrangement but are listed only by month and paper numbers. From CSC 6/82 the sheer bulk of documents meant that paper numbers were abandoned as too time consuming but the arrangement by month and sub-arrangement by competion numbers were retained. From CSC 6/90 a piece is usually equal to half a year.

Related material:

Abstracts (brief information and conditions for entry to competitions) are in CSC 7

Tables of marks and results generated by the competitions can be found in CSC 10

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record(s)
Language: English
Physical description: 102 files and volumes
Access conditions: Open

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