National Archives 2003-10-09

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Arrived at railway station slightly late, but caught train without perceptible difficulty. Arrived at PRO much as usual, but found that somehow the advance order I had made had not ‘taken’ and that it would therefore be necessary to key it in again. However, Julie and Duane behind the desk had a nice surprise: MT 39/465, which had been retagged and was ready for digital camera photography. Files have also been re-ordered. New laptop battery, for which I paid £45, appears to be working very well and has now been auto-calibrated, which means I ought to be able to work with today’s harvest of files on the train, unless I still have pictures on the digital camera when I leave here. There’s always that possibility.

MT 39/465

Working with this file. Pretty sure I’ll be finished—the big problem is clearing one of the four files I have out before 4.30 so I can get the fourth before 4.30 and work with it. This file doesn’t look too unpromising, but now have to get a major digital camera download.

Finished this file. Have also examined the other files, with reports on them:

DSIR 12/294

The usual motley of Laboratory reports—but there are 2 treasures in here: a very full report on the German Autobahnen after the war, with extensive photo illustrations, and a report of Glanville’s visit to the USA, again with extensive photo illustrations. Going to try to nail both.

FO 371/101715

Report of an incident where the British occupying authority in Trieste revived an old law on bilingual signing, thus bringing the wrath of the native Yugoslav community. Don’t quite understand it, it’s not important, and I have a sneaking impression the Yugoslavs were actually arguing against their ostensible interests.

FO 1020/1835

Report from another British occupying authority, this time responsible for Austria. Title of the file is misleading—“Completion of autostrade”—actually what is meant is completion of Austrian Autobahnen. This is not high-priority, although it has some interesting materials.