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The Papers of Sir Peter de la Billière

Reference Code: GBR/0014/PDLB

Scope and Contents

Papers comprising correspondence, manuscripts of books, lectures, photographs, slides and press cuttings relating to his entire army career and his work carried out since retirement.


  • Creation: 1959 - 2001

Conditions Governing Access


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

Sir Peter de la Billière was born in Plymouth at the Charlton Nursing Home on 29 April 1934, the son of Surgeon Lieutenant Commander Claude Dennis Delacour de Labillière and of Francis Christine Wright Lawley. He married Bridget Constance Muriel Goode in 1965 with whom he has one son and two daughters. He was educated at Harrow School before joining the King's Shropshire Light Infantry in 1952.

He was commissioned in the Durham Light Infantry and after serving in Korea [North Korea and South Korea] he joined the Special Air Service and saw action in Malaya [later part of Malaysia] (1956-1958), Oman (1958-1959), Aden [Yemen] (1964) and Borneo (1964-1965). From 1972-1974 he was Commanding Officer of 22nd SAS Regiment before becoming an General Staff Officer (1) at Staff College In Camberley from 1974-1976. In 1978 he became Director of the SAS. He was Military Commissioner and Commander of British Forces of the Falkland Islands from 1984-1985. He returned to the United Kingdom to the position of General Officer Commanding Wales in 1985, General Officer Commanding South East District and Permanent Peace Time Commander, Joint Forces Operations Staff in 1988. In 1990 with the outbreak of the Gulf War he was appointed Commander of British Forces in the Middle East. At the end of the war he became a special advisor to the Secretary of State for Defence on Middle Eastern issues. He retired from the army in 1992.

His publications include: "Storm Command" (1992) and "Looking for Trouble" (1994).


77 archive box(es)

Language of Materials


Other Finding Aids

Copies of the collection level description and the catalogue are available for consultation at Churchill Archives Centre, Cambridge, and the National Register of Archives, London.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers were loaned to Churchill Archives Centre by Sir Peter de la Billière, 2003 and 2004.


The collection was catalogued by Elizabeth Ennion, 2004. Biographical information was obtained from "Who's Who 2002" (A and C Black) and "Looking for Trouble" (1994).


Billière, Sir Peter Edgar de la Cour, de la, b 1934, General

2004-08-25 15:00:44+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