Helen Lotbinière Collection

Scope and Content

Volume entitled ‘Scrap Book Eddie and Helen de Lotbinière’ containing TS extracts from letters, diary entries and latter accounts by Helen de Lotbinière describing the struggle to join her husband in Aden and her life and work in Aden from Oct 1939-Mar 1941. Also includes photographs, letters, pressclippings, Christmas dinner menu for 1940, identity card and special permit to enter vulnerable areas.

Administrative / Biographical History

Helen Ruth Mildred Joly de Lotbinière (1912-1953)

Born in 1912, the daughter of H.T. Ferrar (the New Zealand geologist on Scott’s first expedition to the Antarctic). Married Captain (later Lt-Col) Sir Edmond Joly de Lotbinière in 1937. Edmond Joly de Lotbinière was an ex-Indian Army officer turned City businessman when he was called up in 1939 to serve in Aden. Helen joined him in Aden and was employed part time in classified registry work for the Royal Air Force. Edmond was involved in special operations directed against the Italians in Somalia where he was later posted. Helen was friends with Freya Stark and Stewart Perowne with whom Helen and Edmond travelled to Dhala (on the border with northern Yemen) in Dec 1939. Helen and Edmond were also close friends with Antonin Besse. Helen died of TB in 1953.

Conditions Governing Access


For further information on how to use the Middle East Centre Archive, please see our Archon entry at http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/a/A13531965

Acquisition Information

Received as a gift from Virginia Forbes (niece of Helen Lotbinière) on 17 Apr 2007

Archivist's Note

Fonds level description created by Debbie Usher 17 Apr 2007. Biographical information based on information provided by John Shipman and the entry in Who Was Who for Lt-Col Sir Edmond Joly de Lotbinière.

Conditions Governing Use

No restrictions on copying or quotation other than statutory regulations and preservation concerns. The Archive is licensed on behalf of Virginia Forbes to licence material for publication.

Custodial History

In the possession of Helen Lotbinière

Related Material

In Middle East Centre Archive

Stewart Perowne and Freya Stark were friends of Helen Lotbinière and knew her in Aden

  • GB165-0228 Stewart Perowne
  • GB165-0519 Freya Stark Photographic Collection

Geographical Names