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The Papers of William Strang, 1st Baron Strang of Stonesfield, K.C.B.

Reference Code: GBR/0014/STRN


  • 1916 - 1978

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for consultation by researchers using Churchill Archives Centre, Churchill College, Cambridge. Individual closures of files are indicated in the catalogue.

Biographical / Historical

1893: Born, son of James Strang, Englefield, Berks Educated at Palmer's School.

1912: B.A., University College, London.

1913: Quain Essay, Sorbonne.

1914-1918: Served with 4th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and at H.Q. 29th Division.

1918: M.B.E.

1919: Entered Foreign Office. 3rd Secretary, Belgrade.

1920: Married Elsie Wynn, daughter of J.E. Jones. (1 son and 1 daughter)

1920-1922: 2nd Secretary, Belgrade.

1923-1930: Foreign Office, London.

1925: 1st Secretary.

1930: Acting Counsellor of Embassy, Moscow.

1932: C.M.G. Counsellor of Embassy, Moscow.

1939: C.B.

1939-1943: Assistant Under-Secretary of State in Foreign Office

1943: K.C.M.G.

1943-1945: U.K. Representative on European Advisory Commission with rank of Ambassador.

1945-1947: Political Adviser to C-in-C British Forces of Occupation in Germany.

1946: Fellow of University College, London.

1947-1949: Permanent Under-Secretary, F.O. (German Section)

1948: K.C.B.

1949-1953: Permanent Under-Secretary of State, Foreign Office.

1950: G.C.M.G.

1953: Retired from Foreign Office. G.C.B.

1954: Hon. LL.D (London) Created 1st Baron Strang of Stonesfield.

1954-1966: Chairman, National Parks Commission. Member Nature Conservancy.

STRN 1955: Chairman, Food Hygiene Advisory Council. Published book, The Foreign Office.

1956: Published book, Home and Abroad.

1958-1965: Chairman, Royal Institute of International Affairs.

1961: Published book, Britain in World Affairs.

1962: Published book, The Diplomatic Career. Deputy Speaker and Deputy Chairman of Committees, House of Lords.

1978: Died.

The collection held at Churchill Archives Centre includes family material; material relating to Strang's career in the Foreign Office; Writings and Speeches; Correspondence; Diaries and Notes and Photographs

The main interest in the collection lies in the fascinating papers relating Lord Strang's career in the Foreign Service including such aspects of this as the Metrovick Trial in Moscow in 1933, Chamberlain's appeasement policy in 1938 and 1939 and his relations with the Foreign Office at that time, the work of the European Advisory Commission 1943-45 and of the British Control Commission in Germany 1945-47. There are numerous letters exchanged between Lord Strang and historians engaged on research drawing upon his experience of people and events during his Foreign Office career and particularly tire last sixteen years while he was Permanent Under Secretary (Germany Section) and then P.U.S. at the Foreign Office. Nine files of photographs illustrate the different stages of Lord Strang's diplomatic career.

The collection includes a section on Lord Strang's family tree and xerox copies of diaries he kept while on active service in France and Belgium, 1916-17. The originals of these diaries have been deposited in the "1914-18 Archives" housed in Sunderland Polytechnic. His later career as Chairman of the National Parks Commission is also illustrated and there are drafts, cuttings and reviews of his books, talks and articles.

These papers of Lord Strang, 1st Baron Strang of Stonesfield were given to Churchill College (together with copyright in Lord Strang's writings contained in the collection) by the present Lord Strang and his sister in May 1981.


14 archive box(es)

Language of Materials



The Strang catalogue was converted from typescript to electronic form as part of the A2A project co-ordinated by the National Archives. The catalogue was updated by Natalie Adams of Churchill Archives Centre 2002-2006.

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Churchill Archives Centre Repository

Churchill Archives Centre
Churchill College
Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB3 0DS United Kingdom
+44 (0)1223 336087

The UK Archival Thesaurus has been integrated with our catalogue, thanks to Kings College London and the AIM25 project for their support with this.