Wilfrid J Hemp and John Davies Knatchbull Lloyd Archive

Scope and Content

The archive contains copies of a two volume set of the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments in Wales: an Inventory of the Ancient Monuments in Wales and Monmouthshire, Vol. 6: County of Merioneth (London: HMSO, 1921), annotated by W J Hemp and Knatchbull Lloyd, along with various papers found inserted in the volumes. These papers include manuscript and typescript notes, correspondence, newspaper cuttings, photographs, drawings and postcards relating to the monuments referred to in the volumes. Correspondents include Ifor Williams and J E Lloyd.

Administrative / Biographical History

Wilfrid James Hemp was born on 27 April 1882, at Richmond, Surrey, the only son of James and Alice Hemp. His mother's sister married J Lloyd-Jones, rector of Cricieth, which gave Hemp a link with Wales, and he would spend many childhood summers with them in Caernarfonshire.

Hemp was educated at Highgate School, London. His first position on leaving school was at the Principal Probate Registry, but his main interests lay in history, genealogy and heraldry. In 1913 he was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, and that same year joined the Ministry of Public Works as inspector of Welsh monuments, and secretary of the monuments board.

Hemp's career was briefly interrupted by a period serving in the army during the First World War. On his return to work, he was given the responsibility of overseeing restoration work on the castles of north Wales, along with the excavation and restoration of megalithic graves. In 1928, he was appointed secretary of the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments in Wales and Monmouthshire, and in 1937 he published a volume on the monuments of Anglesey. He began work on a companion volume for Caernarfonshire, but production was postponed due to the outbreak of the Second World War. He retired in 1946.

Hemp was a member of various Welsh committees and societies. In 1911 he joined the Welsh Society of Antiquaries, and held the position of president for the term 1955-1956. He published widely, with over a hundred of his articles appearing in Archaeologia Cambrensis . In 1932, he was awarded an honorary MA from the University of Wales. Hemp became recognised as an authority on Welsh heraldry, and his work on prehistoric Wales set strong foundations for future study. He moved to Cricieth with his wife Dulcia in 1939, where he died aged 79 on 14 April 1962.

John Davies Knatchbull Lloyd was born on 28 April 1900, the son of John Maurice Edward Lloyd, barrister, of Plas Trefaldwyn, Montgomery. He was educated at Winchester School, and at Trinity College Cambridge.

Lloyd contributed a great deal to his locality, serving on various committees and working with many Montgomeryshire based societies. From 1929 to 1946 he held the role of secretary to the Council for the Preservation of Rural Wales. He was secretary to the Powysland Club, 1937-1967; chairman of the Montgomeryshire Health Executive Council, 1948-1951, and chairman of the Montgomeryshire Joint Planning Committee, 1953-1955. From 1957-1974 he acted as chair to the County Library Committee, and in 1961 became chair of the St. Asaph Diocesan Faculty Advisory Committee. Lloyd was also a member of the Historic Buildings Council for Wales, the Ancient Monuments Board for Wales, and the Royal Commission on Ancient Monuments (Wales).

Lloyd, a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, became a JP in 1934. During the Second World War, he held a commission with the RAF Volunteer Reserve. In 1940, he was made High Sheriff of Montgomeryshire, and in 1960 became Deputy Lieutenant of Powys. Lloyd held the position of Mayor of Montgomery on several occasions, from 1932-1938, and 1961-1962. He received an honorary LLD from the University of Wales in 1969, and was awarded the OBE in 1957.

Lloyd published widely. From 1956-1969 he was editor of Archaeologia Cambrensis , and many of his articles feature in both that journal and the journal of the Powysland Club, Montgomeryshire Collections . He also produced various guides to Montgomery itself, and Montgomeryshire, which were published on many occasions by the council and Department of Education. He died on 13 December 1978.

Access Information

The papers may be consulted through application by e-mail to: archives@aber.ac.uk or by post to: Aberystwyth University, Archives, Information Services, Llandinam Building, Penglais, Aberystwyth, SY23 3DB. Tel: 01970 628593.

Other Finding Aids

Basic finding aid available on request from Archives staff.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Rhian Phillips, Archives Hub project archivist, with reference to E D Jones and Brinley F Roberts (eds.), Y Bywgraffiadur Cymreig, 1951-1970 (London: Hon. Soc. Of Cymmrodorion, 1997) and Who Was Who, vol.VII, 1971-1980 (London: Adam and Charles Black, 1981).

Appraisal Information

Appraised in accordance with collection policy.

Custodial History

The volumes seem to have passed from the ownership of W J Hemp to John Davies Knatchbull Lloyd, with both contributing to the content. Nothing is known of their subsequent passage to the library at Aberystwyth.


No accruals expected.

Related Material

Further papers of W J Hemp can be found at the National Library of Wales, Flintshire Record Office, and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales. A group of papers donated by John Davies Knatchbull Lloyd can be found at the National Library of Wales.

Geographical Names