The Ted Edwards Archive

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Correspondence relating to the University of Bradford and to Edwards' role as Vice-Chancellor. Correspondence on his research into various aspects of higher education, particularly on access to education. Drafts of his books, reports, articles, lectures and addresses. Courses and conferences at the Inter-University Centre, Dubrovnik. World Federation of Scientific Workers conference material and publications. Correspondence and publications from local peace groups, particularly European Nuclear Disarmament and Peace Education Network.

Administrative / Biographical History

E.G. (Ted) Edwards was born in South Wales in 1914. From Cardiff High School he went to Cardiff College of Technology, where he was awarded a first-class University of London external degree in chemistry. He gained a PhD in 1938 and, after lecturing in Chemistry at the University of Nottingham, he joined ICI as a research chemist, specialising in plastics, polymers and fibres. After the Second World War he became Head of the Department of Chemistry and Applied Chemistry at Salford's Royal Technical College, then in 1954 Principal of the College of Technology, Liverpool. In 1957 he was appointed Principal of the Bradford Institute of Technology, one of the newly-created colleges of advanced technology, developed from the Bradford Technical College. The Institute rapidly expanded its higher level work : the 124 students enrolled on degree courses in 1957 had increased to 2,600 by 1966.The advances achieved in less than a decade were recognised in the granting of a Royal Charter in 1966, when the Institute became the University of Bradford. E.G. Edwards became Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University. He considered that a high degree of student involvement in governing the University was essential in making the institution relevant to students and to society, championing this involvement long before it was (often reluctantly) accepted elsewhere, overcoming considerable opposition from the University Grants Committee to include a student place on University Council, even though this delayed the acceptance of the Charter. Being concerned about the loss of a broad view with increasing academic and scientific specialisation, he encouraged interdisciplinary courses such as Science and Society, Human Purposes and Communication, and Environmental Science, while his internationalism and deep concern for social progress led to the creation of courses in Project Planning for Developing Countries and Peace Studies. Edwards' commitment to international co-operation was already established : as a chemist he had joined the World Foundation of Scientific Workers and edited its journal, 'Scientific World'. As an academic he was a founder member of the International Centre for Postgraduate Studies, in Dubrovnik, and frequently lectured there.

Ted Edwards was a prolific author on higher education : his philosophy on the subject is perhaps best expressed in the title of his book, 'Higher education for everyone' (1982). His other works included 'The idea of a university' (1964), 'Science, education and society'(1977), 'The relevant university'(1977), 'Critical consciousness in the struggle towards nuclear war'(1982), and he was co-editor of 'Interdisciplinarity : the relation between objective knowledge, moral purpose and social practice' (1984), the proceedings of a conference at Dubrovnik. He was involved with local peace groups such as the Peace Education Network and West Yorkshire European Nuclear Disarmament, an involvement that increased after his retirement in 1978. Ted Edwards died in 1996, aged 82.

Conditions Governing Access

Available to researchers, by appointment. Access to archive material is subject to preservation requirements and must also conform to the restrictions of the Data Protection Act and any other appropriate legislation.

Acquisition Information

Donated to the University of Bradford by the Edwards family in 2005.

Other Finding Aids

Unpublished handlist.

Archivist's Note

Described by John Brooker March 2008 using ISAD(G) 2.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies may be supplied or produced at the discretion of Special Collections staff, subject to copyright law and the condition of the originals. Applications for permission to make published use of any material should be directed to the Special Collections Librarian in the first instance. The Library will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Related Material

There is further material relating to Dr. Edwards' work and writings in the University of Bradford Archive (GB 0532 UNI) and in the Bradford Institute of Technology Archive (GB 0532 BIT) in Special Collections at the University of Bradford.