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Glamorgan Archives
Awbery, Stanley Stephen, MP, collection

Reference code(s): GB 0214 DAW

Held at: Glamorgan Archives

Title: Stanley Stephen Awbery Collection

Short Title: Awbery, Stanley Stephen, MP, collection

Creation date(s): 1890-1968

Level of description: Fonds

Extent: 0.2 cubic metres (11 boxes)

Name of creator(s): Stan (Stanley Stephen) Awbery


Administrative/Biographical history: Stan (Stanley Stephen) Awbrey (1888-1969) was born in Swansea, Glamorgan, educated at Terrace Road Boys' School, and left school at the age of thirteen to start work at a copperworks. He joined the Dock, Wharf, Riverside and General Workers' Union in 1904, and became involved in trade union activity. He became chairman of the Fuel Workers' Branch in 1913, and acted as its secretary from 1914 to 1920. In 1919, he was appointed national auditor of the Dockers' Union, and was involved in the work of the Swansea Labour Association. He was elected a delegate in 1911, and served as a member of the Executive Council from 1914 to 1926, as vice-president in 1919 and as president in 1920. He was active in local welfare and local government work and an energetic member of the House Committee of Swansea General and Eye Hospital from 1914 to 1926. Awbery became a permanent official of the Dockers' Union in 1920 on his appointment as assistant district secretary at Swansea. He played an active part in the Swansea Strike Committee of 1924. In 1926, he transferred to be district secretary at Barry Docks. His involvement with political socialism started with his work as a member of the Welsh Committee of the Independent Labour Party, of which he was elected chairman in 1929. After he moved to Barry, Glamorgan, he was elected to Barry Council in 1931, and acted as Mayor in 1941. After 1926, he was involved in both the Barry Local Labour Party and in the Divisional Labour Party, and contested the Clitheroe Division as parliamentary candidate in 1931 and 1935. He was made a Justice of the Peace for Glamorgan in 1937. He was Labour candidate for the Bristol Central Division in 1937, and returned as Member of Parliament in 1946. He had sat on the Dock Labour Decasualisation and Maintenance Committee in December 1930, and this committee produced a report for the Port Labour enquiry. During the Second World War he was appointed Port Labour Inspector for South Wales in 1940, and continued in this post until the introduction of the Docks Corporation in 1942. Awbrey's interest in trade union activity continued throughout his parliamentary career. In 1948, with F.W. Dalley, submitted a report to the Colonial Office on labour and trade union organisation in the Malay Federation. He met Dom Mintoff, leader of the Malta Labour Party, in 1958, and became involved in the efforts of the Party to secure recognition of the trades union movement there and in the campaign for Maltese independence. Awbrey became a vocal opponent of political imprisonment in Greece, after the imprisonment in 1963 of a wartime friend Tony Ambatielos, leader of the Greek seamen, and attempted to draw the attention of the public to the assassination of Dr Lambrakis. Immediately prior to his retirement from parliament in 1964, his experience of shipping problems in the South Wales Ports coloured his spirited criticism of some proposals in the Welsh Shipping Agency Bill. After his retirement, Stan Awbrey fully developed his pastime as an amateur local historian, and became a prolific author and well-known lecturer on local history topics. He died in 1969.


Scope and content/abstract: Stanley Stephen Awbery Collection, 1890-1968, including papers relating to Swansea General Hospital, 1914-1926; Barry Urban District Council and Barry Borough, 1927-1941; photographs, 1941-1943; trade union papers, 1890-1964, including correspondence, articles, union office diaries, Port Labour Enquiry, working rules, tariffs, and pictorial material; parliamentary papers relating to election publicity, 1929-1959; pictorial material, decasualisation of dock labour, 1945-1968; papers relating to his tours in Europe in 1947, Germany 1952-1957, Yugoslavia 1958, Algeria 1959, Malta 1958-1964, Nigeria 1961; papers relaing to Greek political prisoners, 1963, the campaign to free Tony Ambatielos, and the assassination of Dr Gregory Lambrakis; Welsh Shipping Agency Bill, 1964; personal correspondence from colleagues, 1951-1960; papers relating to Justice of the Peace, 1936-1959; papers relating to Baptist Church and Moral Re-armament Assembly, 1926-1968; personal papers, [c. 1899]-1968, including diaries, personal correspondence, photographs, certificates of bravery, documents of identification, education, newspaper cuttings, maps and miscellaneous items; and papers relating to local history, 1911-1968.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement: Arranged in the following order: DAW/1, General Papers; DAW/PARL, Parliament; DAW/JP, Justice of the Peace; DAW/BAP, Baptist Church; DAW/V, Personal Papers; and DAW/H, Local History.

Conditions governing access: Access to DAW/JP 4-5 is restricted.

Conditions governing reproduction: Normal Glamorgan Archives conditions apply.

Physical characteristics: Good to fair condition

Finding aids: A full version of the catalogue can be searched online at


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information: All records have been retained.

Accruals: Accruals are not expected.

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition: Information to be supplied.


Related material: Associated material held in other repositories: Correspondence on colonial questions, 1949-55. Oxford University, Bodleian Library of Commonwealth and African Studies at Rhodes House; MSS Brit Emp s 365. NRA 16153 Fabian Bureau.


Note: Title supplied from contents of fonds. Some of Awbrey's local history books have been transferred to the Glamorgan Archives library.

Archivist's note: Compiled by Hayden Burns for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Glamorgan Record Office, Catalogue of records for the Stanley Stephen Awbery Collection; Barry: the Centenary Book, ed., Donald Moore (Cardiff, 1984); Grant, Raymond, The Parliamentary History of Glamorgan, 1542-1976, (Swansea, 1978); Stephens, Edgar, The Clerks of the Counties, 1390-1960,(Great Britain, 1961); Dictionary of Welsh Biography, 1941-1970, (London, 2001).

Rules or conventions: This description follows ANW guidelines based on ISAD(G) second edition, AACR2, and LCSH.

Date(s) of descriptions: November 2003

Awbrey, Stan, | 1888-1969 | Archives
Docks | Wales | Swansea
Greece | Politics and government
Labour disputes | Wales, South
Labour movement | Wales, South
Trades unions | Officials and employees | Wales, South

Personal names
Ambatielos , Tony
Awbery , Stan , 1888-1969
Lambrakis , Gregory , d. 1963

Corporate names
Baptist Union of Great Britain and Ireland
Barry (Wales) | Borough Council
Great Britain | Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace (Glamorgan)
Swansea General and Eye Hospital

Barry (Wales)
Bristol (England)
Swansea (Wales)

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