Papers of P.A. Spalding

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 161 MSS. Eng. c. 2763-2802, d. 2298-2340, e. 2433-2607
  • Dates of Creation
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      258 shelfmarks

Scope and Content

Spalding's papers consist of:

  • Diaries of Emma Bigwood, 1862-1935
  • Papers of N.H. Baynes, including holiday diaries, 1889-1913, stories compiled by Baynes, and Baynes family papers
  • Papers of P.A. Spalding, including a group of holiday diaries, 1923-42, the main journal, 1930-86, and diaries, 1935, 1940-83, containing daily notes on the weather and brief memoranda of Spalding's activities each day. The papers also include some unpublished literary work, and several boxes of correspondence

Administrative / Biographical History

Philip Anthony Spalding (1911-89) was at Balliol College, Oxford, 1930-3; lived in London, 1933-8, and moved to Churt (in Surrey) in 1938, the year of his marriage to Edna Brown, ne Young. Of independent means, Spalding devoted much of his life to reading and writing, and considered his diary to be his most important written work. His published work includes A Reader's Handbook to Proust (London, 1952), some volumes of verse and prose, and Self-Harvest, a study of diaries and the diarist (London, 1949).

Emma Bigwood, later wife of A.H. Baynes, was Spalding's maternal grandmother and Norman Hepburn Baynes (1877-1961) was his uncle.

Access Information

Entry to read in the Library is permitted only on presentation of a valid reader's card (for admissions procedures see

Acquisition Information

The papers were given to the Library in 1991.


Collection level description created by Emily Tarrant, Department of Special Collections and Western Manuscripts.

Other Finding Aids

A full description is available in the Library.

Related Material

The Library also holds some photographs of Spalding, his house, relations, and some friends (MS. Photogr. c. 15, items 71-120).

Both sides of Spalding's life-long correspondence with Dr G.F. Nuttall are in Dr Williams's Library, London.