File NLW MS 23550C. - Emlyn Williams letters to Ifan Kyrle Fletcher,

Identity area

Reference code

NLW MS 23550C.


Emlyn Williams letters to Ifan Kyrle Fletcher,


  • 1927-1959. (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

42 ff. Guarded and filed at NLW.

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Emlyn Williams (1905-1987) from Mostyn, Flintshire, was an actor, writer and playwright of international renown. He was born as George Emlyn Williams and started using the name Emlyn Williams in 1927. With the assistance of his French teacher, Sarah Grace Cooke (d. 1964), he won a scholarship to Christ Church College, Oxford, in 1923 (the events were later fictionalised in 'The Corn is Green'). Upon graduating, he pursued a successful acting career, appearing on the stage in 'The Frightened Lady', and becoming a mainstay of the British film industry in the 1930s, working on Hitchcock's 'Jamaica Inn' and other films, writing and appearing in 'The Last Days of Dolwyn' (1949). He wrote and produced numerous stage plays, including 'A Murder Has Been Arranged' (1930), 'Night Must Fall' (1935), 'The Corn is Green' (1938), 'The Wind of Heaven' (1945), and 'Accolade' (1951), and adaptations of Turgenev's 'A Month in the Country' (1957), Ibsen's 'The Master Builder' (1964), and created one-man shows from the works of Saki, Dylan Thomas and Charles Dickens; many of these were reworked as TV plays and films. His stage appearances continued in London, New York and elsewhere. He continued to make TV and film appearances from the 1950s into the 1980s, notably in 'The L-shaped Room' (1962), and 'Emlyn Williams as Charles Dickens' (1983). He also wrote 'George, An Early Autobiography' (1961), 'Emlyn: an early autobiography, 1927-1935' (1974), a non-fiction account of the Moors Murders, 'Beyond Belief' (1967), and the novels 'Headlong' (1980) and 'Dr Crippen's Diary' (1987). He was married to Mary Marjorie (Molly) Carus-Wilson (née O'Shann) (d. 1970) in 1935, and had two sons, Alan and Brook. He was awarded the CBE in 1962. He had many actor friends, including Richard Burton, Noël Coward, John Gielgud, Sybil Thorndike and Lillian Gish.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Bloomsbury Book Auctions; London; Purchased at auction, lot 250; 10 October 1996; B1996/44.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Thirty-three letters and cards, 1927-1959, from the actor and playwright (George) Emlyn Williams to his friend Ifan Kyrle Fletcher, containing references to readings and productions of his plays.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to abide by the conditions set out in information provided when applying for their Readers' Tickets, whereby the reader shall become responsible for compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998 in relation to any processing by them of personal data obtained from modern records held at the Library.

Conditions governing reproduction

Usual copyright laws apply.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes


Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

The contents are indexed in greater detail in Handlist of Manuscripts in the National Library of Wales, vol. 9 (Aberystwyth, 2003).

Allied materials area

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Notes area


Title based on contents.


Preferred citation: NLW MS 23550C.

Alternative identifier(s)

Virtua system control number


CAIRS System Control Number


GEAC system control number


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Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru = The National Library of Wales

Rules and/or conventions used

Description follows NLW guidelines based on ISAD(G) 2nd ed.; AACR2; and LCSH


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

May 2009.


  • English



Archivist's note

Description compiled by Bethan Ifans for the retrospective conversion project of NLW MSS;

Accession area

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Physical storage

  • Text: NLW MS 23550C.