Skip to main content

Literary: correspondence and legal papers concerning a libel case brought by Eric O'Gowan (earlier Brigadier Eric Dorman-Smith) against WSC regarding WSC's coverage of O'Gowan's removal from the post of Deputy Chief of General Staff, Middle East, in volume 4 ("The Hinge of Fate") of his war memoirs ("The Second World War")., May 1953 - Jun 1959

Reference Code: GBR/0014/CHUR 4/58A-B

Scope and Contents

Principal correspondents: representatives of O'Gowan's solicitors, Louis C P Smith and Company; representatives of WSC's solicitors Nicholl, Manisty, Few and Company, his counsel Sir Hartley Shawcross, and his Irish solicitors Arthur Cox and Company. Other correspondents include: "Brookie", 1st Lord Alanbrooke [earlier Sir Alan Brooke]; Desmond Flower, director of Cassell and Company (2); "Bill" [1st Lord Camrose, earlier Sir William Berry, Editor-in-Chief] of the Daily Telegraph; Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Pownall; Field Marshall 1st Lord Montgomery (2); Frederick Boland [Irish Ambassador to the United Kingdom]; Fife Clark [adviser on public relations to WSC] (2); Basil Liddell Hart (4); Lieutenant-General Sir Arthur Smith; Anthony Moir of Fladgate and Company [WSC's solicitor] (3); Ronald Belcher, Commonwealth Relations Office, on Major-General Thomas Corbett, former Chief of Staff, Middle East. Also includes notes and copies of correspondence from: secretaries Jane Portal [later Lady Williams of Elvel], Elizabeth Gilliatt, Lettice Marston [later Lettice Shillingford], and Catherine Snelling; Prime Minister's Private Secretaries Peter Oates, John Colville, David Pitblado, and Anthony Montague Browne; [literary assistant] Denis Kelly; CSC; and from WSC to some of those mentioned above and to Lieutenant-General Sir Ian Jacob.Subjects covered by the file include: the Irish legal proceedings; collecting evidence and contacting potential supporters of WSC's case; Field Marshal Sir Claude Auchinleck's views; preparing a footnote for later editions; an ex parte statement by O'Gowan; the omission of the footnote in the 1959 abridged version.Also includes: an opinion by barrister Helenus Milmo; a statement on the case by Nicholl, Manisty, and Few; a note by the Treasury Solicitor; cuttings, including a copy of a poem by Sir Alan Herbert, articles on the case, and extracts from O'Gowan's memoirs from the Empire News; information on Corbett and Major-General William Ramsden; drafts of the footnote initially prepared by Liddell Hart.


  • Creation: May 1953 - Jun 1959

Conditions Governing Access



2 file(s) (2 files (391 loose folios))

Language of Materials