fonds CEMS - Records of the Church of England Men's Society, York Diocesan Union

Identity area

Reference code



Records of the Church of England Men's Society, York Diocesan Union


  • 1963-1987 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

0.06 cubic metres

3 boxes

Context area

Name of creator


Administrative history

The Church of England Men's Society was established in 1899 by the amalgamation of the Church of England Young Men's Society, the Young Men's Friendly Society and the Men's Help Society, with the intention of 'devoting itself to all kinds of work amongst men'.

Parochial branches were encouraged and each Diocesan Union was represented on a National Council which, together with the Executive Committee and Chairman, oversaw the administration of the Society. The Society held an annual conference and from 1902 members could also subscribe to a quarterly periodical, the Men’s Magazine. By 1909 the magazine had a circulation of 65,000 copies.

After a period of moderate success, the Society suffered a steady decline from the 1940s onwards as its place and role within the Church of England came under question. As a consequence of a 1985 report entitled ‘A time to be born and a time to die,’ the Society was wound up with effect from 31 December 1985.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The archive was gifted to the Borthwick Institute by the ex-secretary of the York Diocesan Union branch of the Society in 1987.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

General correspondence files, 1963-1985; diocesan and national committee meeting agendas, minutes, attendance records, reports, correspondence and related papers, 1967-1986; correspondence and papers relating to the organisation and progress of National Conference, Scarborough, 1982-1983; 1982 report, ‘A New Initiative,’ with associated papers and correspondence, 1983-1984; summaries of Executive Working Parties’ meetings, 1983-1984; report to the Council of the Church of England Men's Society, 'A Time to be Born and a Time to Die...' 1985; miscellaneous pamphlets and booklets, 1982-1987.


Further accruals are not expected.

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Records are open to the public, subject to the overriding provisions of relevant legislation, including data protection laws.

Conditions governing reproduction

A reprographics service is available to researchers. Copying will not be undertaken if there is any risk of damage to the document. Copies are supplied in accordance with the Borthwick Institute for Archives' terms and conditions for the supply of copies, and under provisions of any relevant copyright legislation. Permission to reproduce images of documents in the custody of the Borthwick Institute must be sought.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A typescript finding aid, to file level, is available for consultation in the searchroom of the Borthwick Institute.

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Existence and location of copies

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Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

GB 193

Rules and/or conventions used

ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description, International Council on Archives (2nd edition, 2000); Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names, National Council on Archives (1997).

Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

Created by S. A. Shearn, 23.04.15.




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