Disarmament Cartoon
Mural outside of CO Project offices. Story of the mural.


BUILDING PEACE We are a charity set up to provide advice and information on the causes and effects of war and violence and peaceful resolution.
The PEACE RESEARCH AND EDUCATION TRUST supports peace research, believing that to build peace without the use of violence, all need to understand the conditions for its growth and to develop the skills to overcome obstacles to peace.

PRET supports projects and resources for teachers, parents and students, believing young people need access to information that shows that neither violence nor threats of violence are the means for achieving a just or lasting peace.

PRET supports the production of a balance of easily accessible materials on issues related to peace and war, which will, as appropriate, be matched to the requirements of the National Curriculum and other curricula. PRET supports research into ways in which teachers and students themselves are dealing with issues of war, violence and peace.

PRET believes that the history of peace-making can be an important educational tool for teachers, students and researchers, and supports a peace archive at the Peace Pledge Union.

PRET welcomes the support of those willing to help to develop and expand this work and make resources available to a wider audience.

peace education
PRET is supporting peace education through grants for individuals to attend peace research and history conferences and teachers’ union conferences, and by providing speakers for schools. PRET supports the educational section of the PPU website, which contains a vast array of teaching materials on peace and war. Recent work in schools by the PPU’s Education worker included a nation- wide writing competition about conscientious objection.

peace history
PRET supports the PPU’s extensive library and archive of material about pacifism and the PPU’s history since 1934. Accessible by appointment. | more
child slate

‘take the necessary steps to ensure that the practice of peace and non-violence is taught at all levels in their respective societies, including in educational institutions.’
UN International Decade for a culture of peace and nonviolence for the children of the world.

Download | coproject leaflet  | pret information leaflet | annual report

Please note that PRET does not give grant funding to individuals for research or other work.

Part of exhibition telling the story of World War One Conscientious Objectors at the CO Resource Center



The centenary of World War One has provided a unique opportunity to tell the story of the men who refused to fight - the conscientious objectors - investigating and exploring their stories and making them more widely available.

The Peace Pledge Union’s WW1 Project is a continuation of work supported by PRET over a number of years. Its aim is to commemorate as many WW1 COs, estimated to be some 20,000, as can be traced, with a story of their experience and their sometimes gruelling trajectory through tribunals, prisons, Home Office schemes or escape to America.

The Men who Said No website is the public face of the project which, in addition to the biographies, is outlining the story of conscientious objection, and the anti war movements before the war. As well as including little known information about the women who were key participants in the resistance against war it places objection to war in a wider social and political context. A key expansion of the site will be the development of related teaching resources to enable students, and indeed anyone, to explore the multiplicity of objections to war - objections as relevant today as then.

The Project is researching these stories through fragmented information held by relatives and in archives around the country. The project welcomes enquiries and information about CO relatives as well as help with research and preparation of material.

In 2018 PRET supported distribution of information about the International Conscientious Objectors Day.







War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today.’ President John Kennedy



The Trust is supporting the Conscientious Objection Resource Centre at the Peace Pledge Union office on a regular basis. This Centre is open by appointment to students, members of the public and the media. Increasing enquiries are being received about conscientious objectors from family members.

The resource centre and related projects aim to tell the stories of the men and women conscientious objectors of the 20th century, document their experiences, publish teaching resources and video personal recollections. The current exhibition on conscientious objection in WW1 was sponsored by PRET and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The education and resource centre has
- an extensive database of COs original documents, letters and photographs
- audio and visual recordings
- books
and can provide individual support for students and researchers

Contact us for an appointment if you would like to visit the resource centre, if you were a CO and would like to record your experiences, or if you have information about individual COs.


The Tribunal

the WW1 conscientious objectors new





Refusing to Kill - this book, designed for use in education both in schools and for general use, outlines the story of conscientious objection in World War One, bringing the stories of COs to life. It is set in the context of the struggle for human rights. This book has been updated for the centenary, with additional material about women peace campaigners, and about the plaque at the PPU office commemorating World War One COs who died because of their resistance to war. |View Sample Pages | Buy |

Saying No to Violence: children and peace - a publication which casts a critical look at the way children are taught to accept violence as natural and inevitable, suggesting alternative strategies to bring up children to act, and think, non-violently; it contains suggestions for parents and teachers including lesson plans. |View Sample Pages | Buy |

Remembering War - is a long standing project supported by PRET which looks at the politics behind the narrative of Remembrance and war commemoration. Its major publication, Remembering War: studying war past and present, which includes resources for pupils and teachers, has now been updated and reprinted and will shortly be repurposed for online use. |View Sample Pages | Buy |


Refusing to killOrdinary people in extraordinary circumstances can show us that even in the darkest of times it is possible to resist the call to war. 
Refusing to Kill tells the stories of men who in the First World War resisted the propaganda, the peer pressure and the full and sometimes brutal force of the state and refused to take part in war: the killing of strangers - of men like themselves.

Ideal for use in class with a range of supplementary teaching and study notes. 
Buy | Study notes






Peace Research and Education Trust 1 Peace Passage London N7 0BT
+44 020 7424 9444 email

registered charity no   1064299