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British Orienteering Federation Archive

Reference code: 232

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of results files relating to the organised competitions of members of the British Orienteering Federation between April 1961 and March 2009, together with copies of some 50 series of newsletters issued throughout the UK from 1962. In addition, there are files of material collected by Carol McNeill, an active member of the BOF, which include maps, coaching and planning notes, and reports of meetings and events, plus further files donated by the Federation and individual orienteers.

For further details of this collection please see the box lists in the External Documents section below.


  • Creation: 1961 - 2012


Conditions Governing Access

Available by appointment


British Orienteering Federation Ltd.

Biographical / Historical

Orienteering is a sport involving navigation with the use of maps at speed through unknown terrain. In the UK, the British Orienteering Federation is the national governing body for the sport, and was established in June 1967. Orienteering began in Scandinavia, where it was introduced as a form of army training, with competitions being held between military garrisons as early as 1895. It came to Britain in the 1950s, with the support of well-known Olympic athletes such as John Disley and Chris Brasher, the latter becoming the first Chairman of the English Orienteering Association. As the sport expanded the British Orienteering Federation (founded 1967) developed, and by 1972 there were 12 national and regional Associations. In 1998 there was a membership of some 10,000, with over 150 clubs taking part. A number of universities have orienteering teams, with the British University Orienteering Championships held as early as 1968. By 1972 30 universities were sending teams to the event.

The University of Sheffield team has played a prominent role in orienteering competitions since the early days, with the Sheffield University Orienteering Club amongst the largest and most active in the country.


175 Box(es)

45 Folder(s)

c105 Volume(s)

Language of Materials



As received

Custodial History

Donated by the British Orienteering Federation in 1998, with later accruals

Description rules
International Standard for Archival Description - General
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

Western Bank Library
University of Sheffield
Western Bank
Sheffield South Yorkshire S10 2TN United Kingdom
+44 (0) 114 222 7299