Fonds GB 0210 WYNMAS - Wynford Vaughan-Thomas Papers,

Identity area

Reference code



Wynford Vaughan-Thomas Papers,


  • 1850-1986 (accumulated [1908]-1986) / (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

0.286 cubic metres (10 boxes)

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Wynford Vaughan-Thomas, CBE (1908-1987) (full name Lewis John Wynford Vaughan-Thomas), from Swansea, Glamorgan, was a broadcaster and author. His father was the composer David Vaughan Thomas (1873-1934). He was educated in Swansea and at Exeter College Oxford. He joined the BBC in London in 1937, and became a war correspondent, covering the Anzio landings in North Italy, 1943, and campaigns in France and Germany in 1944-1945. In 1944, he reported the discovery of Botticelli's 'Primavera' in Castello Montegufoni, Italy, and after the capture of Hamburg, he collected papers belonging to William Joyce ('Lord Haw Haw') from the radio station there. After the War, he worked as a radio and television broadcaster, acting as BBC correspondent covering Royal tours to South Africa, 1947, and the Commonwealth, 1954, and also reporting on Indian independence, 1947, the Middle East, 1956, Europe and Africa, 1956-1964, and as a radio commentator on state occasions, 1950-1956. In 1958, he was one of the founders of the TWW commercial television company; he later worked as Director of Programmes at HTV, TWW's successor. He was a keen traveller, bon viveur, journalist and author, writing on his war experiences and the history and landscape of Wales, and also writing radio and TV scripts. His published works include Anzio (1962), Madly in all directions (1967), (with Alun Llewellyn) Shell Guide to Wales (1969), Portrait of Gower (1975), and an autobiography, Trust to talk (1980). He was also a literary executor of the estate of Dylan Thomas, President of the Council for the Preservation of Rural Wales, and a governor of the British Film Institute, and a member of the Saintsbury Club. In 1946, he married Charlotte, née Rowlands; they lived in Fishguard, Pembrokeshire. He was awarded the OBE in 1974 and the CBE in 1986; he died in 1987.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Deposited by Charlotte Vaughan-Thomas, Fishguard, in 1989 and 1990.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Papers of Wynford Vaughan Thomas, 1850-1986, including war despatches, 1943-1945; papers relating to Indian independence, 1947; scripts of radio programmes on the Middle East, 1956; papers relating to state occasions, 1950-1956; notes for a proposed book on the river Niger, 1961-1963; manuscript and typescript copies of stories, articles, lectures, etc., 1947-1964; scripts of radio and TV programmes and proposed programmes, 1946-[1980s]; notes for proposed works on autobiography, 'Journeys', the River Niger, and Welsh history, [1950s]-1984; manuscripts, notes and typescripts for the published works Anzio, Madly in all directions, Shell Guide to Wales, Portrait of Gower, and Trust to talk, 1958-1980; travel journals, 1947-1964, recording visits to India, West Indies, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Hong Kong and Singapore; notebooks containing notes, drawings and miscellanea, [1947]-[1960s]; financial papers, 1945-1973; correspondence, 1936-1986; papers relating to wine, 1980-1984; papers relating to Dylan Thomas and his literary estate, 1955-1974; family papers, 1895-1950; press cuttings relating to his broadcasting career, 1937-1978; papers relating to Botticelli's painting, 'Primavera', 1945-1988; and miscellaneous papers, mainly printed, 1850-1974.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

All records have been retained.


Accruals are not expected.

System of arrangement

Arranged into the following: broadcasting; published and unpublished works; personal papers; family papers; press cuttings; and miscelleneous.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Readers consulting modern papers in the National Library of Wales are required to sign the 'Modern papers - data protection' form.

Conditions governing reproduction

The usual copyright regulations apply.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes


Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

A hard copy of the schedule is available at the National Library of Wales. The catalogue can be accessed online.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Photographs, prints and a recording of a concert of works by David Vaughan Thomas are in NLW, Special Collections and the National Screen and Sound Archive Wales.

Related descriptions

Notes area


Title supplied from contents of fonds

Alternative identifier(s)

Virtua system control number


Project identifier


Access points

Place access points

Genre access points

Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru = The National Library of Wales

Rules and/or conventions used

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


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

May 2003


  • English



The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: NLW, Minor Lists and Summaries, 1991; Stephens, Meic, Oxford Companion to the Literature of Wales (Oxford, 1986).

Archivist's note

Compiled by Annette Strauch for the ANW project.

Accession area