Documents on Mr Irving's claim against the government appointed Trustees who illegally seized his library an research archives
David Irving's Inspection Report of his surviving papers and library
Queen Anne's Gate, SW1H 9AA, London, Friday, October 28, 2005
I TODAY carried out an inspection of the boxes removed from No. 81 Duke Street ("the Premises") on or about May 23, 2002. Facilities to inspect were provided by Baker Tilly at their premises (5 Old Bailey), and I conducted the inspection alone from 9:30 to about noon today. Nothing was removed by me other than a pair of prescription reading-glasses, which I need, and about which I informed their staff (Mr Paul Allen). I was received with great courtesy by their staff and Mr Allen. I took ten digital photographs of evidentiary value, listed below, as well as two low-resolution movie panoramas of the room before I started opening boxes, and these colour images are all on the enclosed disc, and attached hereto as black and white prints.
The boxes had been sorted into three stacks by Stuart Perry of DLA. An approximate count revealed 56 boxes of legal files (my ring binders) assembled for the various litigation episodes, discovery, etc (see photo G, above); and twenty boxes of printed books from my shelves (my "Library"), and 59 boxes containing papers, tapes, movie films, microfilms, and documents, which had been crudely tipped into them from various filing cabinets and cupboards with seemingly no organisation (see photo H). I have made no attempt to check whether all the books that were originally removed are present.
It is worth noting here that apart from a few small desk items (including rubber stamps, an address-embossing press, a paper folder, a stapler and a hole puncher), nothing other than library and archival material was produced at this inspection: no furniture whatever, or equipment, or personal materials or clothing or other stuff seized or looted from the Premises. They took all our tables, desks, lamps, chairs, clothing, domestic and other items, leaving me, a writer, with nothing to write on (or with) or sit on.
To my rather astonished query as to whether this property provided for inspection today was everything that was left in store, Mr Allen said so far as he knew it was. I pointed out that much essential equipment (listed in detail in my "Answer 117" often referred to) was missing, including specifically the expensive Kodak-Recordak microfilm reader-printer, without which of course the microfilm collection is useless (I actually pointed out to Christopher Craig at the visitation on April 17, 2002, that the printer reader was clearly a tool of the trade for precisely this reason, which did not stop him from seizing both that and the microfilms of historical archives).
Stationery stocks are missing, which Baker Tilly's internal letters show they realised should not have been seized: headed stationery, envelopes, and our stocks of costly A4, A3, and even A2 sized photo paper have been looted along with the very expensive ink cartridges of which we had purchased a large number for the various specialised inkjet printers; in the case of the A3 paper only the emptied packets survive, having been looted and being now used as packaging. That adds insult to injury.
The specialised filing cabinets and shelves which we had purchased to house the microfilm collections and the hundreds of ring-binders are also missing. Our steel and wooden cabinets (five in number) had evidently been forced open where locked, and their contents tipped into boxes; their suspension files were emptied and the empty suspension files tossed into the boxes afterwards. That also adds insult to injury. The task of re-filing these filing cabinet materials will by itself take an estimated three months of skilled (e.g. my) labour at eight hours a day; the task of re-filing the entire collection inspected today will take about one man-year, full-time.
The photographs that I have taken during the inspection this morning show variously:
As the photographs show, the boxes and their contents are in such a shocking content that one can only talk of spite and vandalism, either by [...] or by Deborah Lipstadt's "expert inspectors" whom Baker Tilly allowed to maraud through the boxes unchecked und unsupervised (one of whom, Jersak, was caught red-handed trying to steal stuff ).
Damage: Large photographs and illustrations in the collection, including the Churchill desk diaries and aerial photographs of Auschwitz, have been seriously damaged. Books have had their bindings and covers ripped off (e.g. my Volume III of the George Kent Catalogue of German Foreign Office documents, see photo A). Many will have to be repaired or rebound before they can properly take their place in library shelves again.
Given that it was impossible to inspect the contents of even the 59 miscellaneous boxes minutely, from top to bottom, and check them against the various inventories, it is not impossible that specific items listed as missing will turn up and we will of course quite honestly report when this occurs. An Uher tape recorder, Report 2000, purchased about 1969, was found in a box; but I am missing a reel to reel four-track tape recorder needed to transcribe telephone and interview tapes of the 1960s and 1970s. Such things are now obsolete and probably unobtainable. The actual reel to reel tapes themselves, which are of priceless value (telephone conversations, and interviews with Adolf Hitler's surviving staff, Dresden survivors, and other book witnesses, etc.), were also not found during this inspection; they were originally in a steel filing cabinet, of about twenty shallow drawers. None of the contents of this filing cabinet, which also including priceless film negatives, has been sighted in this inspection. I suspect that the steel cabinet was sold for about £5 and its priceless contents junked.
Two of the unpublished manuscripts that I feared missing have turned up in this inspection: the English original texts of Forschungsamt, and of Guernica to Vietnam. The other manuscripts listed in my inventories are still missing, including -- most painfully -- the only original typescript of my memoirs, which I began writing in about 1948.
Major collections are missing:
[sgd David Irving]