BALL, Edward (Ted) (1942-2014)

Scope and Content

Papers of Ted Ball including: audio-visual material, including: fictional and documentary footage, and music audio-visuals relating to Jack The Ripper, 1888-2009; ephemeral materials, including: games, memorabilia, book catalogues, and transcripts, 1888-2009; papers from Jack The Ripper themed societies and associations, c1944-2012; and publicity material and papers relating to Jack The Ripper, including: book and film publicity, conferences, exhibitions and attractions, guided walks and tours, talks, and theatre productions, 1888-2014.

Administrative / Biographical History

Edward Ball, or Ted as he was universally known, was a lifelong bibliophile, with a wide and varied range of interests. For forty years he was the principal partner in Fantasy Centre, a North London bookshop specialising in science fiction, supernatural and weird fiction. With a worldwide customer base the shop was an indispensable source of used and rare books and magazines. From the 1960s he was a familiar presence at the stalls on the Farringdon Road, at conventions, book fairs and the like. As well as stock for the shop, he was buying to build his own collections, including his very particular interest in the mystery surrounding the Jack the Ripper murders. In 1994 he attended the first meeting of { what was to become } the Whitechapel Society, a group of like-minded people, and for the next twenty years was an enthusiastic contributor to their meetings and researches. The resulting archive, built up over some fifty years, and possibly the finest collection of Jack the Ripper material in private hands, was bequeathed to the Bishopsgate Institute on his death in 2015.


The Ted Ball archive is divided into the following four sections:

  • BALL/1: Audio-Visual Material
  • BALL/2: Collectable Ephemera
  • BALL/3: Societies and Associations
  • BALL/4: Publicity

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Deposited with Bishopsgate Institute by Erik Arthur (Ted Ball’s Executor), 15 April 2015.

Other Finding Aids

Adlib catalogue and copy of handlist available in researcher's area

Archivist's Note

Entry compiled by Grace Biggins

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopying and digital photography (without flash) is permitted for research purposes on completion of the Library's Copyright Declaration form and with respect to current UK copyright law.