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France archives guide: France

Archives Guides

IALS Archives subject guide: records in the IALS Archives
Legal Education in France 

The records below, which hold specific references to France, were transferred to the Records of Legal Education Archives (now subsumed into the IALS Archives) by individuals and organisations with a particular interest in legal education, both the UK and abroad.  

All the records, other than those containing personal data, may be viewed by prior appointment in the IALS Library. Closed items are designated in red.  Requests for an appointment to examine any of the records should be made to the Archivist (  

Access: some items are closed to public access as they contain personal data.  Item descriptions are nevertheless included in this guide as indicative of the various organisations’ work relating to French law.

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Sir William Dale: Papers, 1930s-2003

Biographical history:  Sir William Leonard Dale (1906–2000), lawyer and civil servant, was born on 17 June 1906 at The Rectory, Preston in Holderness, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, the elder son and eldest of the three children of the Revd William Dale (1852–1934), Church of England clergyman, and his wife, Rose (1870–1963), daughter of Herbert Leonard, farmer, of Marfleet, Yorkshire.

After Hymers College, Hull, Dale entered into articles with solicitors in the city. After an external London University LLB, he read for the bar, supporting himself on a Gray's Inn scholarship and occasional appointments as a suburban church organist. Call in 1931 was followed by a London pupillage, practice briefly on the north-eastern circuit, and a return to chambers in the Temple. He then joined an English solicitor practising in Jaffa. In 1935 he applied for a legal post in the Colonial Office. On 12 September 1936 he married his second cousin, Emma Patricia Goulton (Biddy) Leonard (b. 1910/11), daughter of Thomas Goulton Leonard, stockbroker, but she was soon diagnosed as having multiple sclerosis and the marriage ended in divorce in 1943. On 30 November 1948 he married Elizabeth Romeyn Elwyn (1922-2002), an American architect, but that marriage, too, was childless, and they were divorced in 1953. She subsequently married the architect Henry Thomas (Jim) Cadbury-Brown.

Dale moved to an administrative position in the wartime Ministry of Supply in 1940, returning to the Colonial Office after VJ-day to the legal complexities of Raja Brooke's cession of Sarawak to the British crown. He was made CMG in 1951, in which year he fielded a request to identify a legal adviser for the new kingdom of Libya by promptly volunteering himself. He returned in 1953, despite the Libyan government's entreaties to stay on as a Supreme Court judge.

A move to the Ministry of Education in 1954 produced a change of work. But Lord Hailsham's arrival as minister in 1957 led to clashes, to which Dale responded by declaring himself semi-redundant, and taking up work for half the day at the Foreign Office. In 1961 he became the legal adviser to the Commonwealth Relations Office (CRO), and in the following year he was seconded to the central Africa office to help deal with the break-up of the Central African Federation. He was promoted KCMG in 1965, and retired a year later, a period which spanned the CRO's amalgamation with his old department, but not the final merger into a single Foreign and Commonwealth Office. In London on 17 June 1966, his last day in service, he married Gloria Finn (b. 1922), textile designer, of Washington, DC, daughter of Charles Spellman, stockbroker. They had one daughter, Rosemary.

A spell in the law officers' department (1967–68) was followed by a decision to move to Beirut as general counsel to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees. Return home in 1973 opened the most productive and creative phase of Dale's legal life, and a working partnership with Kutlu Fuad, head of the legal division in the Commonwealth Secretariat, which had been founded in Dale's CRO days. First came a study of how to provide competent Commonwealth draftsmen, commuted into a fuller investigation into what legislative style would best meet the needs of newly independent countries, and unlocking Dale's interest in simpler approaches to writing statutes. Then came the call to take over the Government Legal Advisers course (another Dale–CRO creation), through which over the next quarter-century Dale persuaded eminent British figures into nurturing the practical skills of generations of overseas lawyers. The final flowering came in the decision of London University's Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS) to found a centre for legislative studies in Dale's honour on his ninetieth birthday. The mark of his continuing vigour and determination lay in his becoming its founding Director and establishing a firm base for its activity before stepping down shortly before his death.

Selected items:

DALE 04/02: Research papers compiled by Sir William Dale, 1961-1995

Reference Title Dates
DALE 04/02/03

Papers relating to French and German law. Including:

  • ‘L’Amelioration des Relations entre l’Administration et le Citioyen dans al Jurisprudence Recente du Conseil d’État Français’, paper by Bernard Ducamin, 1984.
  • ‘The Rule of Law in France: the Conseil Constitutionnel and the Review of Lawfulness by the Conseil d’État’, notes by anonymous author, n.d.


International Association of Law Libraries (IALL): Archives

International Association of Law Libraries (IALL): Archives

Administrative History: the International Association of Law Libraries was founded in 1959 with the purpose of promoting and supporting the work of Law Libraries and related agencies, in order to facilitate research and use of their materials on a multinational and co-operative basis. Its functions and activities have developed to include professional education and development, by means of annual courses, participation in major conferences including the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA), the publication of the International Journal of Legal Information, and other scholarly publications. It also awards scholarship bursaries for and makes an annual award for the best legal website.

Selected items:

IALL 05: Adolf Sprudzs: files, 1959-1995

Historical note: in addition to his membership of various committees (see below), Adolf Sprudzs held the following IALL offices:

  • President, 1986-1989; 1989-1992
  • Secretary, 1980-1983
  • Board of Directors, 1974-1977; 1977-1980; 1983-1986; 1992-1995
Reference Title Dates
IALL 05/32 File: IALL IFLA '89 Paris. Correspondence re administration and content of IALL meeting at IFLA Conference, 1989.  Includes programme.  Includes documents written in French. 1988-1989

IALL 07: Joachim Schwietzke: files, 1970-1992

Historical note: Joachim Schwietzke was IALL Secretary, 1983-1986 and a member of the Board of Directors from 1986-1995.

Reference Title Dates
IALL 07/07 File: IALL Riga 1990  [IALL International Conference "Ecology and Law in the Baltic Sea Area: Sources and Developments", Riga, Latvia, 1990]. Includes Minutes of Board of Directors Meeting, Paris, 1989 1990

Institute of Advanced Legal Studies: Institutional Archives, 1934-2016

Administrative History: in 1932 a Legal Education Committee under the Chairmanship of Lord Atkin was set up to consider the organisation of legal education in England and to make recommendations as to further provision for advanced research in legal studies.  The Committee’s report in 1934 included a recommendation that an Institute of Advanced Legal Studies be established in London.  In 1938 another Committee, chaired by Lord Macmillan, was set up to find a practical means of effecting this recommendation.  The Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS) was established in 1946 as part of the University of London.  Its aims were "the prosecution and promotion of legal research and the training of graduate students in its principles and methods" (39th Annual Report, 1985/86).  Since its inception the scope of the Institute has expanded considerably, with sponsorship of and support for many research projects and the provision of facilities for other research bodies and for conferences, seminars and workshops.  The Library provides facilities for academic and research staff and postgraduate research students from universities all over the world, and is one of the world's largest legal research libraries. 

Selected items:

IALS 13/12: IALS Research Publications 1956-2020

Reference Title Dates

IALS 13/12/05

Frank Wooldridge, Groups of Companies: The Law and Practice in Britain, France and Germany


IALS 13/12/07

Sir William Dale (ed) British and French Statutory Drafting: The Proceedings of the Franco-British Conference of 7 and 8 April 1986


IALS 13/12/15

Dr Helen Xanthaki, Expanding Your Company in France, Italy and Greece


IALS 13/12/20

Lisa Webley, A Review of the Literature on Family Mediation for England and Wales, Scotland, the Republic of Ireland, France and the United States, prepared for the Lord Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Legal Education and Conduct, IALS, 1998


Institute of Advanced Legal Studies Library (IALSLIB): Manuscript Material relating to Legal Education and Research

Institute of Advanced Legal Studies Library (IALSLIB): Manuscript Material relating to Legal Education and Research

Scope and content: the mss comprise a collection of donated or purchased items relating to legal education and research, 1870-1936. Several are undated.  In some cases the provenance is unknown, as the transaction, whether by purchase or donation, was unrecorded; in some other cases the author of the documents is also unknown.

Selected items:

IALSLIB 12: INTERNATIONAL CIVIL AVIATION ORGANISATION, Montreal, Canada - gramophone record, 1956

Extent and form: one 78 rpm gramophone record

Immediate source of acquisition: found in an envelope addressed to K Howard Drake, IALS Secretary/Librarian, postmarked Council of Europe, France, 23 Nov 1967.

Item list:

Archives reference Original Library reference Title Dates
IALSLIB 12 R/A ICA INTERNATIONAL CIVIL AVIATION ORGANISATION, Montreal, Canada: gramophone record, 78 rpm, entitled “The spelling alphabet, 1/3/56: gramophone record referred to in Pt III of Annex10 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation”.  1956

International Law Association (ILA): Archives, 1866-2019

International Law Association (ILA): Archives, 1866-2019

Administrative History: the International Law Association (ILA) was founded in Brussels in 1873 as an association 'to consist of Jurists, Economists, Legislators, Politicians and others taking an interest in the question of the reform and Codification of Public and Private International Law, the Settlement of Disputes by Arbitration, and the assimilation of the laws, practice and procedure of the Nations in reference to such laws' (afternoon sitting of the first conference of members, 19 November 1873: reference ILA 01/01). It was initially called the Association for the Reform and Codification of the Law of Nations, changing its title to the International Law Association in the early 20th century. 

The Association was to consist of a Council of officers comprising a President, vice presidents, secretaries and other members of the Conference (called the Bureau), plus a series of local, departmental or provincial committees who were to report to the President. These committees have since expanded into International Committees. The ILA's activities are now organised by an Executive Council, assisted by the Headquarters Secretariat in London. Membership of the Association, at present about 4,200, is spread among branches throughout the world and ranges from lawyers in private practice, academia, industrial and financial spheres, and representatives of bodies such as shipping and arbitration organisations and chambers of commerce. The ILA has consultative status, as an international non-governmental organisation, with a number of the United Nations specialised agencies. 

The ILA's objectives are pursued primarily through the work of its International Committees and the focal point of its activities is the series of Biennial Conferences. These conferences, of which over 70 have so far been held in different locations throughout the world, provide a forum for the comprehensive discussion and endorsement of the work of the committees.

The records: the material below has been selected from the ILA archive due to its particular relevance to law in colonial jurisdictions.  Some items are closed to public access under The Data Protection Act. Closed items are designated in red.

Selected items:

ILA 02: Conference, 1874-2014

Reference Title Dates

ILA 02/01/05

Attendance register. Members present at the conferences held in London (1910), Paris (1912) and Madrid (1913).


ILA 02/01/09

'Possible venues or invitations'. Includes some administrative correspondence re 1984 Paris conference.


ILA 02/06

Conference at Antwerp, 1877. Report of the Council for the year 1876-7 to the 5th Annual Conference (nine copies) and the following paper:

  • 'The Doctrine of Continuous Voyages, as applied to Contraband of War and Blockade, contrasted with the Declaration of Paris of 1856' by Sir Travers Twiss, Q.C., D.C.L.


ILA 02/21

Conference at Budapest, 1934. List of persons registered as attending the 38th Conference. Papers presented at the conference, including 'The Effect of the Briand-Kellogg Pact of Paris on International Law: Report of the Committee on Conciliation between Nations'.


ILA 02/39

Conference at Paris, 1984. Reports presented at the 61st Conference and audio-cassettes of proceedings:


ILA 02/39/01

Reports and administrative correspondence with programme.  Reports presented by committees, including:

  • Comité de Droit International Médical et Humanitaire;
  • Bulletin de la 601ème Conférence de l’International Law Association.


ILA 02/39/02

Conference at Paris, 1984 - Audio cassettes


ILA 03: International Committees, 1875-2019

Reference Title Dates

ILA 03/02/03

Warsaw Conference. Most material dates from 1928: volume with pasted in report of the Extradition Committee to the conference, and text of draft convention; pamphlet copies of the report (three copies, one French, two English with one annotated) and draft convention; loose leaf transcript of proceedings of the Extradition Section of the Conference (English and French). Included are letters between Sir Henry Chartres Biron, Herbert Francis Manisty and Francis Temple Grey.  Also contains two copies of the International Convention for Suppression of the White Slave Traffic signed at Paris, May 4, 1910 (Treaty Series 1912, no. 20)


ILA 03/04

Air Law Committee. Correspondence, reports and administrative papers.  Variously known as Aerial Law/Aviation Law/Air and Space Law Committee, the Committee was established in 1912 following a decision taken at the Paris Conference of that year and was initially engaged in preparatory work for the first international Air Convention. This work was interrupted by the war, and when the Committee resumed, it was to find that work in the field had been accelerated by international events. In 1919, an International Air Convention was signed by several states of the Allied and Associated Powers, with air navigation between the signatories and the enemy states being governed by several Treaties of Peace. The 1919 Convention also provided for the establishment of a permanent International Commission for Air Navigation as part of the organisation of the League of Nations.

The role of the Aerial Law Committee of the ILA thus became to comment and advise on the 1919 Convention, as noted in the Conference Report of the 29th Conference held at Portsmouth in 1920.


ILA 03/04/01

Comité Juridique International de l’Aviation – British Section. Founded in 1909 and held its first conference at the Trocadéro in 19101, under the presidency of M. Millerand. It prepared a Code de l’Air.

This file contains minutes of the British Section of the Comité between November 19101 and March 19012, sent [by Edward Stanley Mould Perowne] to Dr. Hugh Bellot with covering letter. It also contains later minutes of the Section (1922-1924), along with memoranda and articles issued by the Comité


ILA 03/28

Committee on the Right to Food. Administrative correspondence. Subjects discussed include the establishment, aims, modus operandi and composition of the Committee, as well as the Committee’s eventual termination in 1991.  Includes:

- Informal report by the Right to Food Committee to the 1984 ILA Conference in Paris.


ILA 03/57/02

Reports and papers. Includes

  • Memorandum, ‘Resolution 4/2002. Paris/New Delhi Principles on Jurisdiction Over Corporations’, 2002.

CLOSED until 2033


ILA 04: Regional branches of the ILA: records, 1877-2013

ILA 04/03 International Law Association in France, 1927-1937

Reference Title Dates

ILA 04/03/01

Annual Return of Members of the French Branch.  Completed pro forma return sheets for 1935 and 1937 holding list of members of the French branch, including report of payment to the funds of the Executive Committee


ILA 04/03/02

Two membership lists for the French branch of the ILA, one annotated 'April 1935', and membership lists and structure for the National Committee of the 'French Branch Association Bureau


ILA 04/03/03

Administrative correspondence.

Chiefly correspondence re administrative matters such as branch subscriptions, election to office. Includes a report on the mobilisation of the UN Peace Force and UN Emergency Force, 1960; personal correspondence re the death of Albert de Geouffre de la Pradelle, 1955, and condolences on the death of Professor M. Virally.


ILA 06: Library material, 1866-1969




ILA 06/33

Pamphlets by Eleanor Wyllys Allen, including:

  • ‘The Position of Foreign States Before French Courts’, 1929.


ILA 06/35

Pamphlets, including:

  •  ‘Arbitral Clauses And Awards: Recent Developments In French Law’ by Martin Domke, 1943


The Statute Law Society (STLAW): Archives 1975-1999

Administrative history: the Statute Law Society was founded in 1968 and has members throughout Britain, Europe and the Commonwealth.  The Society is a charitable body which aims to educate the legal profession and the public about the legislative process, with a view to encouraging improvements in statute law.

Selected items:

STLAW 07: Printed Material published under the Auspices of, or with the Co-Operation of, the Society, 1975-1996

Reference Title Dates
STLAW 07/06 Sir William Dale (ed), Preparation and Accessibility of the Written Law in France, Statute Law Society, 1991 1991

Society of Public Teachers of Law (now Society of Legal Scholars) Archive

Society of Public Teachers of Law (now Society of Legal Scholars) Archive

Administrative history: the Society of Public Teachers of Law (SPTL) was founded in 1909 by Dr Edward Jenks, the then Principal and Director of Studies of the Law Society. 

Aims: Rule 2 of the Society states that "The objects of the society shall be the furtherance of the cause of legal education in England and Wales, and of the work and interests of public teachers of law therein by holding discussions and enquiries, by publishing documents, and by taking other steps as may from time to time be deemed desirable" (see SPTL 06: List of Members and Rules 1910).

Since its inception, the SPTL has acted to improve the quality of legal education and research through publishing reports, setting up working parties, putting forward submissions, holding conferences and producing journals and newsletters on matters relevant to legal education. Its representation on the different law teaching bodies in England and Wales has meant that it has operated with great effectiveness as a pressure group for change.

In 2002 the Society of Public Teachers of Law was renamed the Society of Legal Scholars.

Selected items:

SPTL 05: Annotated Papers Presented at SPTL Meetings, 1909-1931

Reference Title Dates
SPTL 05/04 Edouard Lambert, “Le Role d’un Congres International de Droit Compare en l’An 1931”, paper delivered at the Hague on the role of the International Congress, Paris, 1929 1929
SPTL 05/09 A Pillet, “Le Professeur A V Dicey”, from the Revue du Droit et de la Science Politique en France et a l’Etranger, 1922 1922
SPTL 05/10 Edouard Lambert, “The Teaching of Comparative Jurisprudence and the Institutes of Comparative Law in France”, read at an SPTL meeting on 10 July 1925 1925

Professor William L Twining, Law Teacher (TWIN): Papers, 1944-2006

Professor William L Twining, Law Teacher (TWIN): Papers, 1944-2006

Biographical History: William Lawrence Twining (b.1934) has had a long and distinguished career in law teaching and has been involved in many projects relating to legal education.  He was educated at Charterhouse School, Brasenose College, Oxford and the University of Chicago.

He was Chair of the Commonwealth Legal Education Association (CLEA) from 1983-1993 and Supervisor of the Commonwealth Legal Records Project (records held in the IALS Archives; ref: CLRP). 

University posts:

  • Lecturer in Private Law at the University of Khartoum (1958-1961)
  • Senior Lecturer in Law at University College, Dar-es-Salaam (1961-1965)
  • Professor of Jurisprudence at the Queen's University, Belfast (1965-1972)
  • Professor of Law at the University of Warwick (1972-1982)
  • Quain Professor of Jurisprudence at University College London (1983-1996)
  • Director of University of London LLM Review (1992-1993)

Selected items:

TWIN 03: Papers relating to research projects, 1965-2014

TWIN 03/04/02: Law in Context Proposals, 1966-1988

Reference Title Dates
TWIN 03/04/02/17 "W&N Britton". Proposal for book on the French legal system.  Includes copies of articles and sources 1983-1984