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British Library of Political and Economic Science

Knight, Sir Arthur William (1917-2003), businessman


Reference code(s): GB 0097 KNIGHT

Held at: British Library of Political and Economic Science

Title: Knight, Sir Arthur William (1917-2003), businessman

Date(s): 1930s-2002

Level of description: collection

Extent: 33 boxes

Name of creator(s): Knight | Sir | Arthur William | b 1917 | Knight | bank director


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sir Arthur Knight began his working life as a clerk at Sainsbury's, taking evening classes at the London School of Economics and graduating with a first class degree in commerce. He spent a year in the Department of Business Administration before joining Courtaulds as a junior economist in 1938. During World War Two, Knight served in the Army, returning to Courtaulds after his service and becoming finance director in 1961. He was a key player in the opposition to ICI's takeover of Courtaulds during the 1960s. Knight became deputy chairman in 1970 and Chairman in 1974. After leaving Courtaulds, Knight became Chairman of the National Enterprise Board but resigned in 1980 after only one year. During his career Knight took a keen interest in management education and helped to set up the Manchester Business School, serving on its council for several years.

After retirement Knight served on several Government committees and the executive committee of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research. He was a member of the LSE Court of Governors from 1971-1994 and became an honorary fellow in 1984 and pursued his interests in business history, management education and industrial policy.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Sir Arthur Knight, 1930s-2002, relating to his career in business and academia. The papers include biographical notes and diaries, research papers on business management and education, notes for talks and speeches and correspondence.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:


Conditions governing access:


Conditions governing reproduction:

Most items can be photocopied, subject to handling and copyright restrictions. No material may be published without the prior permission of both the copyright holder and the Library. All applications for publication must be made to the Archivist in the first instance, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user.

Finding aids:

List of files available from Archives staff.



Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Deposited by the family in 2008.



Archivist's note: Sources: Copied from LSE Archives CALM database by Anna Towlson.

Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: Apr 2008


Personal names
Knight | Sir | Arthur William | b 1917 | Knight | bank director

Corporate names