Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bumf n.

also bumpf, bumph, bunf
[abbr. bum-fodder under bum n.1 ]

1. paperwork, paper.

[UK]Barrère & Leland Dict. of Sl., Jargon and Cant.
[UK]Athenaeum 11 July 582/2: Many slang expressions may be added [...] ‘Bimf’ [sic] Army correspondence, is a riddle.
[Aus](con. WWI) A.G. Pretty Gloss. of Sl. [...] in the A.I.F. 1921–1924 (rev. t/s) n.p.: bumf. That portion of the enormous mass of Official correspondence which was used for a more undignified purpose than the originally intended. Later applied more generally to correspondence and literature of little value.
[Aus]R. Rivett Behind Bamboo 395/2: Bumf, paper of any kind.
[UK]D. Davin For the Rest of Our Lives 246: The Stakhanovists were those who could keep the biggest amount of bumph circulating in their trays.
[UK]J.P. Carstairs Concrete Kimono 54: All religiously stacked with thousands of other pieces of bumpf.
[UK]G.F. Newman You Flash Bastard 222: Among the crime reports, telexes, inter-Division memos and bumf from the Yard spilling from his Posts trays was a report on TDC Crane by Lenny Feast.
[UK]Barr & York Sloane Ranger Hbk 158: bumph n. Paper. As ‘Why does the Ministry send out all this bumph?’ or ‘Have you any writing bumph?’.
[UK](con. 1964) P. Theroux My Secret Hist. (1990) 250: Miss Natwick saw me dealing with the papers. She said ‘Bumf!’.
[UK]I. Rankin Strip Jack 250: All that bumpf they give you with hire cars.
[UK]Indep. on Sun. 18 July 26: Most of them convert their order papers and all the rest of the bumf into briquettes to heat their large and draughty homes.
[Aus]S. Maloney Sucked In 20: Mail’s on your desk. Usual bumph, nothing urgent.

2. lavatory paper.

[UK]E. Pound letter 22 Nov. in Read Letters to James Joyce (1968) 145: The females have maliciously ruined DeBosscheres drawings by saving 2d. on bunf.
[UK](con. 1914–18) Brophy & Partridge Songs and Sl. of the British Soldier.
[UK]P. Larkin letter 10 Nov. in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 83: Thank you very much for your letter & please excuse the bumf this is written on.
[UK](con. 1964) P. Theroux My Secret Hist. (1990) 250: She said, ‘Bumf!’ [...] ‘Bum fodder,’ she explained in her Rhodesian snarl.
[UK]A. Higgins Donkey’s Years 193: Multiple flushings and vigorous application of stiff bumf, the toilet roll sent fairly spinning.

3. scrap paper.

[UK](con. 1900s) S. Leslie Oppidan 28: Where the devil is that bumf?
[UK]D. Davin For the Rest of Our Lives 97: Just a moment while I get a bit of bumph. What was the map reference again?
[UK]‘Charles Raven’ Und. Nights 126: Joey slung the dough in the car and took out a big foolscap-size envelope, stuffed with bumph.

4. published material (printed or online) considered as nonsense.

[Aus]Sydney Morning Herald 5 May [Internet] Read some of the extraordinary bumf – repeat, bumf – on the organisation’s website.