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The Papers of John Burns Hynd

Reference Code: GBR/0014/HYND

Scope and Contents

The collection includes material relating to Hynd's spell as Minister for Germany and Austria from 1945 to 1947 and his consequent life-long interest in Germany and in promoting good relations between Germany and Great Britain. There are several files of papers in the collection illustrating this aspect of his career as well as his involvement in other aspects of foreign relations.
Having started his career as a railway clerk in his home town of Perth, Hynd kept some of his early writings, talks and other papers on transport and on the Trades Union movement in general. There are also constituency papers from his Parliamentary constituency of Attercliffe in Sheffield throughout the years in which he represented that Division as a Labour Member of Parliament, as well as a few Labour Party papers.
The collection also contains a number of cartoons by Hynd, mainly from the 1930s. Hynd regularly contributed articles and cartoons to local Sheffield newspapers and to the ‘Railway Review’ during the time between his adoption as a prospective candidate for the Attercliffe Division of Sheffield and his appointment as a Labour MP in 1944.


  • Creation: 1920 - 1986


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for consultation by researchers using Churchill Archives Centre, Churchill College, Cambridge. One item within the collection (HYND 7/19/2, part 1 of 2) is currently closed for conservation reasons.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers wishing to publish excerpts from the papers must obtain prior permission from the copyright holders and should seek advice from Archives Centre staff.

Biographical / Historical

John Burns Hynd was born in Perth, Scotland, on 4 April 1902, the son of Henry Hynd and his wife Ann, JP. He was educated at St Ninian's Episcopal School, Perth, and Caledonian Road School, Perth. At the age of thirteen, Hynd left school in order to help his mother raise his siblings. He continued his education at night school, where he learnt shorthand-typing, economics and foreign languages. In 1927, he married Elsie Margaret Doran, with whom he had one daughter. From 1916 to 1925, Hynd worked as a Railway Clerk at the District Office, Perth, for Caledonian Railways, and subsequently for London, Midland and Scottish Railways (LMSR) and from 1925 to 1944, he worked as a Trade Union Clerk for the National Union of Railwaymen (NUR). Hynd was a long-serving Labour MP for the Attercliffe Division of Sheffield (1944-1970) and from 1945 to 1947, he was Chancellor of Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for Germany and Austria. In 1947, Hynd served as Minister of Pensions and between 1950 and 1955, he was a Member of the General Medical Council. In the 1960s, Hynd was Chairman of the Anglo-Latin American Parliamentary Group. He also served as a delegate to the Council of Europe and the Western European Union and chaired the Anglo-German Parliamentary Group. Hynd was awarded the Grand Cross of Merit with Star (West German Republic) in 1958, the Chevalier of Legion of Honour (France) and the Great Golden Cross of Honour with Star (Austria). He received the Honorary Freedom of the City of Sheffield in 1970. In 1966, Hynd published ‘Willy Brandt: A Pictorial Biography’. He died on 8 November 1971.


57 archive box(es)

1 folder(s)

Language of Materials



The papers have been arranged into seven sections: Trade Union Business, Constituency and Labour Party, Germany and Austria, Foreign Affairs (other than Germany), Speeches and Writing, Correspondence and Personal, Photographs and Miscellaneous.

Other Finding Aids

The collection has been catalogued. Paper copies of the catalogue are available for consultation in the Reading Room at Churchill Archives Centre and at the National Register of Archives in London.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers of John Burns Hynd were given to the Churchill Archives Centre in January 1986 by his widow, Mrs Elsie Hynd and his daughter, Mrs Sheila Youngs, through the good offices of Dr Ulrich Reusch of the University of Wurzburg who had been working upon the collection in the family home and suggested Churchill College as the most suitable place to deposit it for permanent safe keeping (Accession 666). Additional material was given to the Archives Centre by Mrs Sheila Youngs in 2017 (Accession 1991) and in 2018 (Accessions 1985, 2002, 2003 and 2013).


The Hynd 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 2002-2005. The additional material was catalogued by Julia Schmidt in 2018.


Hynd, John Burns (1902-1971) politician


2018-01-18 09:10:54+00:00
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