This is the fourth release of Security Service records since the full implementation of the Freedom of Information Act in January 2005. Though exempt from the Act, the Security Service will continue to make its records available to researchers. This, the fifteenth Security Service release, contains 214 files, bringing the total number of its records in the public domain to well over 3,000.
As with previous releases some three-quarters of the records are personal files relating to individuals (KV 2), with a small number of subject files (KV 3), policy files (KV 4), organisation files (KV 5) and list files (KV 6).
The majority of files are from 1939-45 but there are a considerable number from the inter- and post-war periods, dealing with a range of groups and subjects, including: double agent operations; right-wing extremists and the British Union of Fascists; German and Japanese agents and intelligence officers; British and European Communists and suspected Communists, Soviet intelligence agents and intelligence officers; and the International Brigade.
Of the personal files in this release, the most notable include those relating to the writers Margaret Storm Jameson, Sylvia Townsend-Warner and Valentine Ackland, White Russian leader in London Count Paul Ignatieff, Invergordon mutineer Fred Copeman, Austrian Communist spy (believed to have recruited atom spy Alan Nunn May), Engelbert Broda, society intelligence agent Lady Howard of Effingham, General Sikorski and the supposed sabotage attempt on his plane and the British military theoretician whose ideas are credited with leading to the development of Blitzkreig theory in Germany, Basil Liddell-Hart.
The personal files are listed under the following categories:
There are also a number of 'untitled' personal files (KV 2/2419-2424), that is files relating to individuals or topics that do not fit squarely into the above categories, mostly relating to anti-Nazi refugees from Germany or occupied Europe.
The subject files (KV 3/269-286) contain papers on German Intelligence Service activities in Spain, the investigation into the supposed sabotage attempt on a plane carrying General Sikorsky in 1942, COMINTERN and the activities of the British Union of Fascists after it was banned in 1940.
This release includes policy files (KV 4/331-353) dealing with a wide range of matters, including censorship and the handling of internees and aliens.
The organisation files (KV 5/42-58) include files on the British branch of the International Brigade.
A few files have been weeded whilst others have been reconstituted from microfilm of the original document, and therefore are in photocopy form. In both cases this is indicated in the press pack.
Most personal files include a minute sheet attached to the inside cover, providing a useful index to the file.
Highlights of the release include: