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The Papers of Sir Barnes Neville Wallis

Reference Code: GBR/0014/WLIS

Scope and Contents

Copies of papers written by Wallis in the course of his aeronautical research.


  • 1940 - 1963

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

Barnes Neville Wallis was born 26 September 1887 the son of Charles George Wallis and Edith Eyre Ashby. He married Mary Frances Bloxam in 1925 and they had two sons and two daughters. Wallis left school at sixteen with no qualifications, and began working in shipyards. In 1913 he moved to Vickers-Armstrongs Limited to design airships. By 1930 Wallis was working on planes. He is remembered for designing the bouncing bombs used to attack the German dams at Eder and Mohne. After the Dambusters raid in 1943, Wallis moved on to design much bigger bombs such as the Tallboy and the ten-ton Grand Slam bomb. After World War II Wallis led aeronautical research and development at the British Aircraft Corporation until 1971. He became a fellow of the Royal Society in 1954 and was knighted in 1968. Wallis died 30 October 1979.


2 archive box(es)

Language of Materials



These papers have not been arranged.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Sir Barnes Wallis deposited these papers at Churchill Archives Centre in March 1966.

Related Materials

The notes and manuscript of an unpublished biography of Wallis are amongst the Hurren papers held at Churchill Archives Centre, ref. HREN 1/1 - 1/4.

Related Materials

The majority of Sir Barnes Wallis' papers (1905 - 1973) are held at the Science Museum in London,


This collection (fonds) level description and catalogue of the papers was compiled by Louise King of Churchill Archives Centre in May 2003. Information was obtained from " Who Was Who 1897-1996" (A & C Black) and from the papers themselves.


Wallis, Sir Barnes Neville, 1887-1979, Knight, aeronautical engineer

2003-05-29 13:54:10+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