News story

National Archive records from 1983 released

Highlights of the 1983 official records include London Zoo's search for a panda, the Prime Minister's visit to China and tensions over Grenada.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


The official records of the Prime Minister’s Office and the Cabinet Office from 1983 have been released by the National Archives.

Following a change to the Public Records Act, this is the first year where we will release 2 years’ worth of official records as we move from releasing files when they are 30 years old, to when they are 20 years old.

Find out more about the 1983 files on the History of Government blog.

1983 was a very eventful year for the government on the international front - amongst the many foreign policy challenges you can read about are the relationship with President Reagan during the Cold War and the prime minister’s visit to China where the papers cover subjects from the sovereignty of Hong Kong to London Zoo’s desire for a fertile female panda.

There were also many economic challenges at home as the government began the move towards its privatisation programme and discussed plans for a miners’ strike.

Visit the National Archives website to find out more about how all these challenges were dealt with in the words of those at the centre of Mrs Thatcher’s government.

Published 1 August 2013