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BOA - British Olympic Association archive collection
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British Olympic Association archive collection

Archives described on the Archives Hub are held in repositories across the UK

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This material is held at University of East London
Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA
Dates of Creation 1906-2009
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Language of Material English Belgian Dutch Chinese Czech Dutch Finnish French German Greek Italian Japanese Korean Persian Portuguese Russian Spanish Swedish Croation Afrikaans
Physical Description 69 shelves

Scope and Content

Papers of the British Olympic Association, 1906-2009, comprising:

Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1906-1928; minutes of the committees and sub committees of the British Olympic Association, notably: Finance Committee, later General Purposes Committee, later Executive Committee, 1919-2009; Housing Committee, 1926-1936; Parliamentary Sports Committee, 1952-1970; Olympic Day Sub-Committee, 1978-1984; National Olympic Committee, 1987-2009;

Administrative records, mostly correspondence relating to David George Brownlow Cecil, Lord Burghley, later Marquess of Exeter, in his roles as chair and later president of the British Olympic Association, member of the International Olympic Committee and also president of the International Amateur Athletics Federation, 1951-1957;

Correspondence and administrative records of the General Secretary of the British Olympic Association, 1910-1977 [incomplete]; correspondence, reports and papers relating to Parliamentary debates and central government committees on the subject of sport, 1960-1995, including material relating to the proposed boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games, 1980; invitations, menus and programmes for fundraising events organised by the British Olympic Association, 1908-2006; publications, articles, conference papers and text of speeches written mostly by members of the British Olympic Association, 1904-[2000];

Results, correspondence, reports and other papers relating to the British Olympic Association's Medical Research Project to determine the physical effects of altitude training on athletes in preparation for the 1968 Mexico City Olympic Games, 1965-1968;

Newspaper cuttings on sporting subjects, with an emphasis on British sportsmen and women and their achievements including cuttings collated on Olympic and Commonwealth Games, 1923-1975, 1983-1989;

Pamphlets, programmes, press cuttings and commemorative material relating to the 1908 London Olympic Games, 1906-1908, 2007-2008;

Minute books, agreements and licences, financial records, press cuttings, photographs, programmes and tickets relating to the 1948 London Olympic Games, 1936-1952; album containing press cuttings, photographs, programmes and other ephemera collated by John Emrys Lloyd mostly concerning the 1948 Games, in particular the fencing events, 1937-1977;

Papers relating to the preparations for the 2012 London Olympic Games, including: reports, briefing papers and feasibility studies mostly commissioned by the BOA in consideration of London bidding to host the Olympic Games, 1978-2003; minutes of evidence, briefing papers, copy correspondence, memoranda, press cuttings, press releases and notes relating to local and central Government committee's investigations into the staging of international sporting events, the construction of a national stadium and supporting bids from British cities to host the Olympic Games, 1990-2003; pamphlets and newsletters providing updates on the progress of the construction and organization for the 2012 London Olympic Games, 2004-2008; press cuttings mostly on sporting subjects but including articles showing support for or controversies surrounding London's bid for the Olympic Games, 2002-2007;

Biographical information, mostly taken from journal articles, concerning Great Britain's Olympic champions, 1948-2006, notably including medals, trophies, certificates and photographs, 1944-2005, relating to the cyclist Wilfred Waters who was a bronze medallist for Great Britain at the 1948 London Olympic Games;

Material relating to the International Olympic Committee, including minutes, papers, agendas and other administrative material concerning the general meetings or sessions of the International Olympic Committee and its sub-committees, 1939-1981; presentation documents, reports and other material relating to prospective cities' bids to the IOC to be considered as host for the 1936-2016 summer and winter Olympic Games between, 1933-2009 [incomplete];

Progress reports, sports programmes, newsletters, rules and regulations for participants, and other commemorative material, mostly produced by the Organizing Committees for each summer and winter Olympic Games, [1896]-2008 [incomplete].

Administrative / Biographical History

The International Olympic Committee, formed in 1894, held its 4th Session in London between 20-22 June 1904. Three of the main organizers of this meeting were Sir Howard Vincent, the Rev Robert Stuart de Courcy Laffan and Charles Herbert, who were the British representatives on the IOC. One of the main results of the Session was the formation of the British Olympic Association (BOA) in the House of Commons on 24 May 1905. William Henry Grenfell MP, later Lord Desborough, was elected as its first chairman with de Courcy Laffan as its honorary secretary. Its remits were to spread in Great Britain the knowledge of the Olympic movement, to guarantee that the views of British sporting associations had due weight and influence in the organisation of the Olympic Games and to ensure the participation both in the Olympic Games and international athletic congresses, of representatives properly accredited by official Sporting Associations and to facilitate the attendance of such representatives. The original committee was made up of members from seven national governing bodies of sport, but today all 33 summer and winter Olympic sports are represented.

In 1906, when Rome pulled out of hosting the 1908 Olympic Games it had been awarded at the 4th IOC Session, Lord Desborough proposed that London should step in. With only two years to organize the event, the 1908 Games utilised existing venues, most notably the White City Stadium which was being constructed for the Franco-British Exhibition. When London was again awarded the Olympic Games with two years notice in 1946, this tactic of exploiting established venues was similarly employed.

One of the fundamental functions of the BOA is to provide the funding and organization to ensure that a Great Britain Team competes at the Olympic Games. Between 1936 and 1976 financial support came from nationwide public appeals for funds. However when the Government wished the British Team to boycott the 1980 Moscow Olympics in protest at the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the BOA realised that the public was unlikely to be willing to support such a cause. Under the leadership of Sir Denis Follows and influenced by the spirit of Olympism which transcends all political interference, the BOA decided to send a British Team from its own funds, a move which left it virtually bankrupt. Conscious of safeguarding against relying on such inconsistent sources of income in the future, the BOA was one of the first national Olympic committees who sought additional funding from industry such as sponsorship and merchandising.

The BOA also offers elite athletes other support services, such as medical and physiological facilities to ensure that a GB Team attending each Games is as best prepared as it can be.

Additionally, as the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Britain, the BOA is involved in the selection process for candidate cities wishing to host the Olympic Games.

Arrangement

Apart from a few series, the majority of the collection had no arrangement as such. Previously it had been shelved to fit in with the arrangement of the BOA's book collection.

[note on spelling: for consistency's sake, 'organize' and organizing committee' are spelt with a 'z' as this form appears most prominently in the collection.]

Conditions Governing Access

Access is by appointment only, please contact the Archives Department, University of East London, for information. See: www.uel/lls/search/resources/libraryarchives/

Some files are closed, please see individual file descriptions for details.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies, subject to copyright and the condition of the original, may be supplied. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the archivist.

Acquisition Information

Transferred from the British Olympic Association in three accessions between 2009-2010.

Custodial History

Between 1988 and 1994, the offices of the British Olympic Association suffered a series of floods. A large proportion of the library and archive collection was either destroyed or damaged, resulting in significant gaps in series.

Archivist's Note

Sources: British Olympic Council. 'Fourth Olympiad being the official report of the Olympic Games of 1908', British Olympic Association, 1908; Anthony, Don. 'Minds, bodies and souls. An anthology of the Olympic Heritage Network', British Olympic Association, [1996]; British Olympic Association website: www.olympics.org.uk (accessed October 2010). Description by Caroline Lam, November 2010

Other Finding Aid

Catalogue is also available as a Word file, please contact the Archivist.

Related Material

The University of East London also holds the reference library of the British Olympic Association which is currently undergoing cataloguing. Within the third accession of material was the extant collection of the Commonwealth Games Federation, 1930s-1994, however the majority of it is severely water damaged and will be closed for the foreseeable future until extensive conservation can be undertaken.

Papers of Cdr F W Collins, RN, who was responsible for the organisation of the 1948 Olympic Torch Relay held at Loughborough University, ref: D70/1/5/9; Archives of the International Olympic Committee are held by the Olympic Museum, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Personal Names

Cecil, David George Brownlow. ( 1905-1981) Lord Burghley, later 6th Marquess of Exeter athlete and politician

Corporate Names

British Olympic Association ( 1905-)
International Olympic Committee ( 1894-)
International Amateur Athletics Federations ( 1912-)

Cataloguing Info

Title British Olympic Association archive collection
Creation Created by Caroline Lam using the cheshire for archives ead creation tool 2010-11-30
Revisions

Minutes of the BOA

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M
Dates of Creation 1906-2009

Council of the British Olympic Association

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1
Dates of Creation 1906-1963
Name of Creator British Olympic Association

Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1906-1912

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/1
Dates of Creation Dec 1906-Oct 1912
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript and printed minutes of the meetings of the Council of the British Olympic Association. Includes details on the formation of the BOA and the organisation of the London Olympic Games, 1908.

Subjects

Olympic Games (4th : 1908 : London, England)

Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1912-1918

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/2
Dates of Creation Dec 1912-Feb 1918
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript and printed minutes, agendas, annual reports and accounts relating to the meetings of the Council of the British Olympic Association and of the Annual General Meetings of the BOA. Council minutes between April 1913-January 1914 include the minutes of the Special Committee for the Olympic Games of Berlin 1916.


Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1919-1921

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/3
Dates of Creation Jan 1919-Jan 1921, 1923
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas, accounts and reports of the meetings of the Council of the British Olympic Association. Includes partial minutes of a British Olympic Association Appeals Committee meeting, 26 March 1923.


Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1921-1924

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/4
Dates of Creation 1921-1924
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Bound typescript and printed minutes of the meetings of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 6 Jan 1921-16 December 1924. Also contains minutes of the meetings of the Housing Committee, 29 April 1922-14 March 1924. Names and addresses of members of the Council and Sporting Associations are pasted in the front and back of the volume. [Note: binding is damaged and volume has sustained some water damage.]


Minutes of the Council of the British Olympic Association, 1925-1928

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/5
Dates of Creation Feb 1925-Dec 1928
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas, accounts and reports of the meetings of the Council of the British Olympic Association. Includes annotated typescript list of the names and addresses of the Council.


British Olympic Association Meetings Attendance Book

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/1/6
Dates of Creation Feb 1913-Jul 1963
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

British Olympic Association Meetings Attendance Book. Manuscript volume, containing the names, mostly signatures, of those attending meetings of the British Olympic Association. Also includes index of members of the Council, Finance Committee, General Purposes Committee, Proficiency Badge Committee, Special Committee and Modern Pentathlon. Arranged chronologically.


Finance and General Purposes Committees, later Executive Committee

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2
Dates of Creation 1920-2009
Name of Creator British Olympic Association

Administrative / Biographical History

Originally Finance & General Purposes Committee, then split into two separate committees at the beginning of 1923. Became joint committee again in 1937 but replaced by General Purposes Committee in 1977. Finally renamed the Executive Committee in 1993.


Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee, 1920-1922

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/1
Dates of Creation Feb 1920-Oct 1922
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas, accounts and other papers of the meetings of the Finance & General Purposes Committee.


Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee, 1922-1923

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/2
Dates of Creation Nov 1922-Nov 1923
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas, accounts and other papers of the meetings of the Finance & General Purposes Committee, 10-12 November 1922. Also typescript and printed minutes of the meetings of the General Purposes Committee, 10 January-23 November 1923


Minutes of the Finance Committee, 1923-1924

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/3
Dates of Creation Jan 1923-Dec 1924
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 file

Scope and Content

Typescript and printed minutes of the meetings of the Finance Committee. [Note: item damaged and fragile]


Minutes of the Finance Committee, 1925-1929

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/4
Dates of Creation 1925-1929
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas and other papers of the meetings of the Finance Committee, March 1925-February 1929. Also includes papers relating to the meetings of the Housing Committee, 25 May 1926-11 June 1928. Names and addresses of members of the Finance Committee pasted in front of volume.


Minutes of the Finance Committee, 1929-1933

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/5
Dates of Creation Mar 1929-Mar 1933
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas and other papers of the meetings of the Finance Committee. Names and addresses of members of the Finance Committee pasted in front of volume. Also includes typescript minutes of the meetings of the Housing & Transport Committee, 13 November 1931-23 February 1932


Arrangements for the 1936 Winter and Summer Olympic Games, 1933-1937

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/6
Dates of Creation 1933-1937
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas and other papers of committee meetings relating to arrangements to participate in the 1936 Winter and Summer Olympic Games, comprising: Finance Committee, 16 March 1933-11 March 1937; Equipment, Transport and Housing Committee, 2 April 1936-23 June 1936; report of the informal meeting of representatives of the Governing Bodies of Winter Sports, 3 June 1935.


Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee, 1937-1959

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/7
Dates of Creation 1937-1959
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agendas and other papers of the meetings of the Finance & General Purposes Committee, 6 May 1937-19 June 1959. Also papers relating to the meetings of the Housing, Equipment and Team Managers Committee for London Olympic Games of 1948, 5 March 1947-21 June 1948.


Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee, later General Purposes Committee, 1959-1980

Reference Number(s) GB 2381 BOA/M/2/8
Dates of Creation Oct 1959-Jun 1980
Name of Creator British Olympic Association
Physical Description 1 volume

Scope and Content

Typescript minutes, agenda, memoranda, reports and other papers of the meetings of the Finance & General Purposes Committee, 1 October 1959-8 December 1976. Also papers of the meetings of the General Purposes Committee, 1 June 1977-11 June 1980.