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Papers of W.P. Winston


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Papers relating to service with the Public Works Department, Malaya, 1937-1959; including war service in the Indian Engineers, 1942-1945, office diaries, 1946-1959, and cine-films of PWD road building and Merdeka celebrations.


  • Creation: [1937-1959]


6 boxes

Language of Materials

  • English

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MSS. Ind. Ocn. s. 317].

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Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. Ind. Ocn. s. 317

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 4993

Biographical / Historical

William Peter Winston (fl 1914-1985) joined the Colonial Service in 1937 and was posted to the Public Works Department of Pontian and then to Johore Bahru, Malaya. He served in Johore Nahru as Engineer-in-Charge until the Japanese occupation of Malaya in 1942. For the rest of the war he served in, and later commanded, 151 Indian Railway Construction Company I. E. rising by 1945 to the rank of Acting Major; the company was principally employed on the construction of the Rangapahar Base in Assam. After the war he transferred to the British military administration of Malaya. After Malayan independence in 1957 he remained as State Engineer for Kedah and Perlis. In 1959 he married Dr. Thora Oehlers and shortly afterwards retired from the Colonial Service.

Other Finding Aids

Listed as no. 744 in Manuscript Collections in Rhodes House Library Oxford, Accessions 1978-1994 (Oxford, Bodleian Library, 1996). A handlist is also available in the library reading room.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers were donated to the library by W.P. Winston in June 1987.

Related Materials

Certificate of the Technical Association of Malaya, 1957; letter of appointment as Councillor of State, Kedah, 1956; citations and correspondence relating to Kedah medals, 1958-1960; Malayan proclamation of independence, 1957 (ref. MSS. Ind. Ocn. t. 9); three letters home, 1942, giving an account of the Japanese invasion of Malaya and his subsequent escape (ref. MSS. Ind. Ocn. s. 122)

Papers of W.P. Winston 1937-1959
Paul Davidson
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom