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Westminster Diocesan Archives

GRIFFIN, Cardinal Bernard William (1899-1956): Archbishop of Westminster


Reference code(s): GB 0122 Gr and G/G

Held at: Westminster Diocesan Archives

Title: GRIFFIN, Cardinal Bernard William (1899-1956): Archbishop of Westminster

Date(s): [1943-1956]

Level of description: Collection (fonds)

Extent: 145 boxes

Name of creator(s): Griffin | Bernard William | 1899-1956 | Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born Birmingham, 21st February 1899. Educated Cotton College, Oscott, the Venerable English College and the Beda. He was ordained in 1924 and 3 years later became Secretary for 10 years to the Archbishops of Birmingham. He was Chancellor of the Diocese at 30 and a notable Administrator of its charitable homes.

In 1938 he was made Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham and during the War period succeeded Hinsley as Archbishop of Westminster, 1943-1956. He was created Cardinal Priest of Santi Andrea e Gregorio Magno on 18 February 1946.

His links with social welfare helped him deal with the new post-war Labour Government as it carried out sweeping and widespread social reforms. He journeyed frequently abroad on Church affairs until stricken by illness that hampered his last years. He died on 20 August 1956, at the age of 57.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Bernard William Griffin as Archbishop of Westminster, [1943-1956], including material on the Holy See; Bishop's conferences; synods; religious orders; Vicars General and Chaplaincies; Papal Encyclicals; ecclesiastical and diocesan matters; moral, social and political issues; ecumenism; media, communications and publications; foreign countries; national and international institutions; government; embassies; hospitals; trusts, foundations and communities; lectures; homilies; patronages; photographs; personal correspondence; staff; invitations; education; visits and finance.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

Original order.

Conditions governing access:

Open for consultation by appointment only between 12:00-5:00, Mondays and Wednesdays. Call: 0207 938 3580 or email: for appointments.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies, subject to condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only on the undertaking of a copyright declaration. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Westminster Roman Cathlic Diocesan Trustees.

Finding aids:

Subject index available in the Archive's reading room.



Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Received by the Archive from Archbishop's House.



Archivist's note: Compiled by Sarah Drewery.

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: Sep 2008

Catholicism | Christianity | Ancient religions | Religions
Diplomacy | Foreign relations | International relations
Ecumenicalism | Christianity | Ancient religions | Religions

Personal names
Griffin | Bernard William | 1899-1956 | Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster

Corporate names
Roman Catholic Church
Vatican x Holy See