Wood’s Despatch

Wood’s Despatch of 1854

Charles Wood was a British Liberal politician and Member of Parliament. He served as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 1846 to 1852. Later he became the President of the Board of Control of the East India Company. In 1854 he sent the “Wood’s despatch” to the Governor General Lord Dalhousie.

As per this despatch:

  1. An education department was to be set in every province.
  2. Universities on the model of the London University be established in big cities such as Bombay, Calcutta and Madras.
  3. At least one government school be opened in every district.
  4. Affiliated private schools should be given grant in aid.
  5. The Indian natives should be given training in their mother tongue also.
  • Wood’s Despatch is called Magnacarta of English Education in India.
  • In accordance with Wood’s despatch, Education Departments were established in every province and universities were opened at Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in 1857 on the model of the London University.
  • Later more universities were opened in Punjab in 1882 and at Allahabad 1887.


  • praveen

    by reading about this i came to an conclusion even though indians had a good time with britishes and its continues till now.

    • Aditya

      Ya. But, only some Britishers thought like Charles Wood !

  • muhammad idris

    it was a positive step in the indian education of british style of modern education and of course a gift for the Indians

  • Name shazia ANJUM

    It was the turning point of indian education

  • Anas Khan

    Sir, Actually Britishers were kind hearted but due to some of them being greedy our nation suffered

  • Anas Khan


  • nazir

    wood gave a real gift to india

  • Michael

    Yeah…he did promote English education in India. But that was being done for the administrative needs to rule India. Later Charles Wood as Secretary of State also said that “All experience teaches us that where a dominant race rules another, the mildest form of government is despotism”

  • Disha

    This is for everyone who thinks Charles Wood did this because he thought of India. The main reason to introduce western education was that the common people would be able to serve in the government at subordinate levels because the British government was finding it financially difficult to maintain an all-white administration. Also by being exposed to western knowledge the common people would be influenced by the Christian heritage of the west. AND, lastly it would teach the common people the value of the superior quality of English good that needed a market in India.

    If u are gonna ask me how I know all this, it’s because I am a student of History honours and I know the flip side of the coin.