Papers of Richard Crossman MP (1907-1974), Labour politician

Scope and Content

Correspondence and subject files, 1926-1974; Crossman's publications, 1937-1973; papers re: Crossman, by other people, 1923-1976; diaries, 1928-1974; press cuttings, 1945-1974; photographs.

The deposit also includes some of the papers of his third wife Anne, his father-in-law A. P. McDougall, and his literary agent, Helga Greene. These have all been placed in category 6. Crossman's letters to his second wife, Zita, and her replies have been kept together in category 3.

Administrative / Biographical History

Richard Crossman was born in 1907. Member of Oxford city council, and leader of the Labour group, 1934-1940; German propaganda specialist, Special Operations, 1940-1941; Labour Member of Parliament for East Coventry, 1945-1974; member of Labour Party National Executive Committee, 1952-1967, and Chairman, 1960-1961; Minister of Housing and Local Government, 1964-1966; Leader of the House of Commons, 1966-1968; Secretary of State for Social Services, 1968-1970; editor of the New Statesman, 1970-1972; author of political and philosophical works, and the posthumously published political diaries. He died in 1974.


Michael Stenton and Stephen Lees, 'Who's Who of British Members of Parliament volume 4: 1945-1979', (Sussex, 1981)

Anthony Howard, 'Crossman. The pursuit of power' (Jonathan Cape, 1990)

Richard Crossman, 'The diaries of a cabinet minister. Volume 1, Minister of Housing 1964-1966' (Hamish Hamilton and Jonathan Cape, 1975)

Richard Crossman, 'The diaries of a cabinet minister. Volume 2, Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons, 1966-1968' (Hamish Hamilton and Jonathan Cape, 1976).

Richard Crossman, 'The diaries of a cabinet minister. Volume 3, Secretary of State for Social Services, 1968-1970' (Hamish Hamilton and Jonathan Cape, 1977).

Hugo Young, 'The Crossman Affair' (Hamish Hamilton and Jonathan Cape, in association with the Sunday Times, 1976)

Editor Janet Morgan, 'The backbench diaries of Richard Crossman' (Hamish Hamilton and Jonathan Cape, London, 1981).


Crossman arranged his papers in various subject / correspondent files and that arrangement has been kept, with some slight modifications for consistency.

Access Information

Subject to conditions described in the full catalogue, this collection is available to researchers by appointment at the Modern Records Centre, University of Warwick. See

Acquisition Information

The collection was deposited with the centre in several stages, between 1977 and 1996, by Crossman's widow, Mrs. Anne Crossman.

Other Finding Aids

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

The original diary tapes were recorded on reel-to-reel tapes. They were transferred to cassettes for research use and now digital copies are available via this on-line catalogue.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this archive, apart from the requirements of copyright law.

Preferred citation: Richard Crossman Papers (MSS.154), Modern Records Centre, University of Warwick.

Related Material

The Centre also holds: the papers of Tam Dalyell, Crossman's parliamentary private secretary and biographer; personal letters and postcards to Iris Lemare, musician, from Richard Crossman, 1928-1934. Some of Crossman's Palestine Commission papers are deposited in the Middle East Centre, St. Antony's College, Oxford, ref. DS126.4.