Correspondence of Irene Lorriman (born 1915), civil servant, 1937-1990

Scope and Content

This collection of personal papers primarily contains correspondence sent to Irene 'Rene' Lorriman by various friends and relatives. Correspondents include Grenville Wright (friend, c.1883-c.1961), Ernest Lorriman (brother) and his wife Phyllis, Janet Ward (née Lorriman, niece), Bertha Lorriman (mother), and Crosbie (friend?). The letters tell little about the life of Irene herself beyond what can be implied from the words of others but they do provide an insight into the lives of her acquaintances. Ernest's emigration and settlement in Western Australia, for example, is evocatively documented in a series of air mail letters. The collection comprises the following series:

Correspondence to Irene Lorriman. 1937-1990 (MS 642/1);

Correspondence from Irene Lorriman. 1962-1974 (MS 642/2);

Correspondence sent or received by people other than Irene Lorriman. 1957-1974 (MS 642/3);

Manuscript items other than correspondence. c.1947-1975 (MS 642/4);

Ephemera comprising: photograph of Uluru (Ayers Rock), Australia; photograph of Grenville Wright, sculptor; three unwritten postcards; four tickets to coronation events; a programme for Moss' Empire Theatre, Nottingham; and an invitation to attend a ball at Belvoir Castle, Leicestershire. 1953-1990 (MS 642/5);

Administrative / Biographical History

Irene Lorriman was born on 13 April 1915. She was employed by John Player and Sons Ltd, cigarette manufacturer, of Nottingham in the late 1930s. She joined the civilian division of the War Ministry in 1941 and was appointed to the War Office as a clerical officer with the status of a civil servant in 1948. At about this time, she was recommended for an MBE and in 1954 was promoted to the rank of Executive Officer. In 1958, she began work at the Central Ordinance Depot at Chilwell, Nottinghamshire and remained there until her retirement in April 1975 from the post of civilian management administrator. For much of her life, Irene Lorriman lived at 388 Cavendish Road, Nottingham.


The collection has been divided by document type into five series. Within these series, items have been arranged chronologically where possible.

Conditions Governing Access

Some of the collection is accessible to readers. However, the letters are closed for 75 years from the date of each letter, because they contain personal information about living people.

Other Finding Aids

Copyright in all finding aids belongs to The University of Nottingham.

Online: Available on the Manuscripts Online Catalogue, accessible from the website of Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements


Conditions Governing Use

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

Custodial History

The collection was given to The University of Nottingham's Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections on three occasions between 1995 and 1996.