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Papers of William Pugh relating to police work in Kenya

 Single Item
MS. 15842
Held in our offsite storage facility

  • Request
Papers of William Pugh relating to his work as a police officer, mainly in Kenya, comprising:
  1. File 1: papers including letters relating to Pugh's promotions and awards, and booklets from memorial services held in Accra on the occasion of the funerals of King George V and King George VI, 1929-1953
  2. File 2: general photographs of police activities and scenes in Kenya including Armistice Day in Nairobi, 1930, and camel sections, c.1930-1950
  3. File 3: photographs of the Victory Parade in Mombasa in May 1945 which Pugh organised
  4. File 4: official photographs of the training of African recruits at the Kenya Police Training School at Nyeri, n.d. [c.1950]


  • 1929-1953


1 box

Language of Materials

  • English

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 15842].
Please see our help page for further guidance on citing archives and manuscripts.


MS. 15842

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 15842


Papers of William Pugh relating to police work in Kenya.

Biographical / Historical

William Robert Bernard Pugh (known as Peter) was born on 1st July 1907 at Talgarth in South Wales and educated at Malvern School. In 1925 he emigrated to Kenya and took up farming in the Eldoret-Kitale area. Four years later he joined the police and served in Nairobi in the traffic and crime branches and then as officer in charge of Kilimani and subsequently Eastleigh. In 1932 he took over at Nanyuki and the following year was promoted to Assistant Superintendent, in which capacity he returned to Nairobi.

From 1934 to 1935 Pugh served in the Northern Frontier District in charge of detachments at Moyale and Mandera and then as officer in charge at Kitale and Lumbwa, until 1941 when he took over the Railways and Harbours Police. In 1944 he was awarded the Service Medal of the order of St John. After serving as officer in charge at Eldoret and the Coast Pugh returned to Nairobi in 1947. In that year he was awarded the King’s Police Medal in the New Year’s honours list. He was promoted to the rank of Superintendent in 1948 and served for a short time in Nyanza before returning to Nairobi in 1949 as officer-in-charge with the rank of Senior Superintendent. In late 1949 Pugh was promoted to the rank of Deputy Commissioner of Police in the Gold Coast Police, taking up his position in early 1950. In 1952 he assisted in preparing for the modernisation of the Gold Coast Police.

Pugh retired to the UK and in the summer of 1953 began work in London as security officer with Fitzpatrick Civil Engineers overseeing road building projects. In 1956 he moved to Northern Ireland to work as security officer with Short Brothers and Harland, aircraft manufacturers. He retired in 1972 and moved to Sheffield in 1974 where he died on 17th April 1987.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by the daughter of William Pugh in 2019.
Catalogue of the Papers of William Pugh relating to police work in Kenya
Finding aid prepared by Lucy McCann
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom