Skip to main content

The Papers of Cecil Roberts

Reference Code: GBR/0014/RBTS

Scope and Contents

Mainly comprising letters from writers and politicians including Winston Churchill, J. M. Barrie, Sir John Betjeman, Graham Greene, Somerset Maugham, Lord Halifax and Gerald Campbell. The majority of the correspondence is on literary topics. The collection also contains diaries of Cecil Roberts and his commonplace book from 1959-61 which are a source of information on contemporary society. In addition, there are numerous press cuttings and book reviews spanning Cecil Roberts' career.


  • Creation: 1911-76

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for consultation by researchers using Churchill Archives Centre, Churchill College, Cambridge.

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

Cecil Roberts was born 18 May 1892. He was Literary Editor at the Liverpool Post, 1915-1918, and was their Naval Correspondent, Grand Fleet, and War Correspondent, Western Front and the Rhine. During 1920-1925 he was Editor of the Nottingham Journal and he also undertook lecture tours in the USA and Canada, 1920-1939, and in 1922 was the Parliamentary candidate (Liberal) for Nottingham. During the period 1940-1946 he was on the staff of Lord Halifax, then British Ambassador in Washington. Roberts died 20 December 1976.


19 archive box(es)

Language of Materials


Other Finding Aids

The collection was catalogued by Patricia Bradford and Marion Stewart, 1977-9.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

In August 1975, Cecil Roberts decided to bequeath to Churchill College his books, diaries, papers and letters and they were transferred by his executor after his death in May 1977 (Acc 336). A further small addition was made by gift, in 2021 (Acc 2184). Letters from Cecil Roberts to Philip Dossé were purchased from the antiquarian bookseller Richard Ford, in 2023, and added to an existing file of correspondence with the reference code RBTS 2/11 (Acc 2273).

Related Materials

Of the one hundred and eighty-five volumes, received at Churchill Archives Centre, approximately sixty were by Cecil Roberts himself and the remainder were signed works of other authors. Some of these books have been placed in the Roskill Library in the Archives Centre and the residue in the Churchill College Library. All the books bear Cecil Roberts' bookplate.


This collection level description was compiled by Louise King of Churchill Archives Centre, in February 2005, using information from the original catalogue. The catalogue was retroconverted in 2017-18.


Roberts, Cecil Edric Mornington, 1892-1976, journalist

2005-02-21 12:06:19+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