BEAVER, Sir Hugh Eyre Campbell 1890-1967 Knight engineer and industrialist

Scope and Content

This collection covers four aspects of the life of Sir Hugh Beaver: biographical and personal material; professional correspondence; personal correspondence; and lectures, speeches and addresses.
A) Biographical and personal: This section contains letters from friends and family sent to Sir Hugh, drafts and extracts for his autobiography, Sir Hugh's pocket diaries and desk diaries and notes press cuttings and correspondence relating to Sir Hugh's time in the Punjab Police.
B) Professional: This section contains correspondence relating to Sir Hugh's time in Canada, correspondence between Sir Hugh and Sir Alexander Gibb, correspondence relating to Sir Hugh's job at the Ministry of Works and building projects undertaken by the Ministry, correspondence relating to business affairs at Guinness, correspondence relating to his work on various committees during his time at Guinness.
C) Correspondence: This section contains personal correspondence relating to Sir Hugh and his family. It is arranged in chronological order.
D) Lectures, Speeches and Addresses: This section contains lectures, speeches and addresses on industrial planning, education, management practices, air pollution, industry and economics.

Administrative / Biographical History

Sir Hugh Eyre Campbell Beaver was born in Johannesburg in 1890. He was educated at Wellington College, after which he spent two years in the Indian Police force before joining Alexander Gibb and Partners, Engineers. In 1931 the firm was commissioned by the Canadian government to conduct a survey of its national ports. Sir Hugh spent seven months in Canada, during which time he was asked to supervise the rebuilding of the Port of St John in New Brunswick, which had been destroyed by fire. He was a partner of the firm, 1932-1942, and Director General and Controller General of the Ministry of Works,1940-1945. In 1946, he became a managing director of Arthur Guinness, Son and Co Ltd and stayed there until he retired in 1960. He was much involved in the efforts to rebuild the country and the Empire after World War II, and was a co-opted member of Lord Reith's Committee on New Towns 1946-1947, a member of the Building Industry Working Party 1948-1950, Director of the Colonial Development Corporation 1951-1960, and the chairman of the Committee on Power Station Construction 1952-1953. Sir Hugh Beaver was also interested in the promotion and application of science, and was chairman of the committee on Air Pollution 1953-1954, chairman of the Advisory Council on Scientific and Industrial Research 1954-1956, and chairman of the Industrial Fund for the Advancement of Scientific Education in Schools 1958-1963. He was knighted in 1943 and awarded a KBE in 1956. He also received honorary degrees from the University of Cambridge, Trinity College Dublin, and the National University of Ireland, and was made an honorary fellow of the London School of Economics in 1960. He died in 1967.


The collection has been divided into four areas: biographical and personal material; professional correspondence; personal correspondence; and lectures, speeches and addresses. Correspondence has been arranged chronologically.

Access Information


Other Finding Aids

Printed handlist and online catalogue available. There is an index to correspondents at the back of the handlist.

Archivist's Note

Output from CAIRS using template 14 and checked by hand on February 1, 2002

Separated Material

Warwick University: Modern Records Centre holds papers of Bassett as President of the CBI, 1957-1959 (Ref: MSS 200).

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is held by the family