Graphical version

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Robinson, George W. (1898-1972)


Reference code(s): GB 0068 ROB

Held at: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Title: Robinson, George W. (1898-1972)

Date(s): 1924-1965

Level of description: Collection (fonds)

Extent: 4 files, one photographic album and 2 boxes glass negative slides

Name of creator(s): Robinson | George W. | 1898-1972 | horticulturist


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born 14th August 1898 died May 1972. Robinson began his career in horticulture at 15 as an apprentice in Cumberland at Brackenburgh Towers, Calthwaite, Carlisle. Following military service in WW1, Robinson gained experience of construction and landscaping whilst working for the War Graves Commission in France and Belgium from 1920 to 1922 as sub-foreman gardener. He studied for a Kew Certificate between 1922 and 1924, working in the Palm House and later as sub-foreman of the T-Range.

Robinson then travelled to Chile where he worked for the late Chilean Minister in London, laying out an estate for him near Valparaiso, cultivating temperate and sub tropical plants between 1924 and 1929. Robinson worked a Head Gardener to Dowager Marchioness of Linlithgow (1929) and Head Gardener to London Electric Railways (1930-1). He then returned to Kew as Assistant Curator in the January 1931, before becoming Curator at the Chelsea Physic Garden in 1937. Robinson later became Curator at the old University Botanic Garden in Oxford in 1942. He continued to live there until ill health forced him to take early retirement in 1963, upon which he moved to Coventry. During his time at Oxford he was awarded an honorary MA degree, the Victoria Medal for Horticulture (V.M.H.) and the Associate Honour of the Royal Horticultural Society (A.H.R.H.S.) in 1946 and became an Associate of the Linnean Society (A.L.S.) in 1952. Robinson was also President of the Kew Guild from 1957-1958.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of George W. Robinson, 1924-1965, comprising photographs, slides, correspondence, press cuttings and other papers. The photographic album and photographs relate to Robinson's time at Kew, whilst the correspondence and papers date from the early 1960s. The glass slides on the whole date from Robinson's employment in Chile; although some appear to have been used for lectures given at Oxford.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

The collection is divided into four series.
ROB/1 Correspondence
ROB/2 Newspaper Cuttings and Miscellaneous Papers
ROB/3 Photographs
ROB/4 Glass Negative Slides

Conditions governing access:

This collection is subject to the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew's standard access and reproduction conditions. Access is unrestricted and by appointment but will be subject to the conditions of the Data Protection Act. Reproduction information is available on request.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue available, contact the archives for more details.


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:

All records have been retained.

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The material was donated to Kew as a gift by the son of George W. Robinson on 21st July 2005. The accession number is PrP 05-0001.



Archivist's note: Entry transcribed by Sarah Drewery, March 2011.

Rules or conventions: 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: March 2011

Botanical gardens | Nature reserves | Nature conservation | Natural heritage
Lectures (teaching method) | Teaching methods

Personal names
Robinson | George W. | 1898-1972 | horticulturist

Corporate names
Oxford University x University of Oxford
Royal Botanic Gardens | Kew

Chile | South America