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Royal College of Surgeons of England

EDWARDS, Arthur Tudor (1890-1946)


Reference code(s): GB 0114 MS0010

Held at: Royal College of Surgeons of England

Title: EDWARDS, Arthur Tudor (1890-1946)

Date(s): 1914-1944

Level of description: Collection (fonds)

Extent: 1 box

Name of creator(s): Edwards | Arthur Tudor | 1890-1946


Administrative/Biographical history:

EDWARDS, Arthur Tudor (1890-1946). M.R.C.S. 13 November 1915; FR.C.S. 9 December 1915; M.B., B.Ch. Cambridge 1913; M.Ch. 1915; L.R.C.P. 1915; Hon. Ph.D. Grenoble and Oslo.

Born 7 March 1890, the elder son of William Edwards of Langlands Glamorgan, Chairman of Edwards Limited, and his wife Mary Griffith Thomas. He was educated at Mill Hill School and St John's College Cambridge. He took his clinical training at the Middlesex Hospital, when Sir John Bland-Sutton was senior surgeon, and served as dresser and house surgeon to Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor; he was awarded a University scholarship in the Middlesex Hospital Medical School. After serving as surgical registrar at the hospital he was commissioned in the R.A.M.C. on the outbreak of the war in 1914. He worked in France at No.6 casualty clearing station at Barlin under Sir Cuthbert Wallace, and at Wimereux under Maurice Sinclair; he attained the rank of major.

On returning to London practice he became assistant surgeon to Westminster Hospital, and to the Brompton Hospital. At Brompton he played a pioneer part in applying to civilian illnesses the surgical intervention into the thorax which Pierre Delbet, G. E. Gask and others had successfully demonstrated in the treatment of war injuries. He explored successively the surgery of pulmonary tuberculosis, bronchiectasis tumours of the mediastinum, tumours of the lung both malignant and simple. In all this work he was ably supported by his physician-colleague R. A. Young and his anaesthetist Ivan Magill. In ten years he established thoracic surgery as a necessary speciality and himself as its recognised leader.

In 1936 he gave up his general surgical work at the Westminster Hospital on appointment as first Director of the Department of Thoracic Surgery at the London Hospital. He was a consulting surgeon to King Edward VII's Sanatorium at Midhurst and to Queen Alexandra's Hospital, Millbank. As surgeon under the Ministry of Pensions to Queen Mary's Hospital at Roehampton he did valuable work in the repair of the aftermath of war-time gastric operations. He also supervised the London County Council's Thoracic Clinic at St Mary Abbott's Hospital, Kensington. During the war of 1939-45 Tudor Edwards, who had already under gone two severe illnesses in 1938 and 1939, was a civilian consultant with the Royal Air Force, adviser for thoracic casualties to the Ministry of Health and Civilian adviser to the War Office. He organised the reception centres for thoracic casualties under the Emergency Medical Service. He was an excellent teacher and did much to establish a school of thoracic surgeons in Great Britain. During the years of war he provided intensive courses of instruction for service thoracic units, and was assiduous in visiting these units all over the country. He was elected to the Council of the College in 1943, but died before he had completed three years as a councillor.

He was an Honorary Fellow of the American Society of Thoracic Surgeons, and President of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons at home. In the last years of his life he was elected first president of the new Association for the Study of Diseases of the Chest, and contributed a survey of one thousand operations for bronchial carcinoma to the first number of its journal Thorax.

Edwards married on 13 April 1920 Evelyn Imelda Chichester Hoskin, daughter of Theophilus Hoskin, M.R.C.S., of London and Cornwall. He practised at 139 Harley Street, but died suddenly while taking his holiday at St Enodoc, C9rnwall, on 25 August 1946, aged 56. He was buried at St Enodoc Church. At a memorial service in London Lord Horder delivered an obituary oration. Mrs Tudor Edwards survived him, but without children; she died on 13 May 1951, and left 5,000 to the College for the promotion of surgical science. Tudor Edwards was of medium height, handsome and youthful in appearance with thick dark hair.


Scope and content/abstract:

Photographs of doctors and nurses at a field hospital during First World War, includes portrait group, off duty and first aid exercise, no date, c1914-1915. Photographs (stills) from a film of Tudor Edwards by the British Council on chest surgery in 1944, procedure, care and convalescence including a note that the patient was actually an actor.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

By record type.

Conditions governing access:

Access to Collection on written application to The Archivist, Royal College of Surgeons of England 35-43 Lincoln Inn Fields London WC2A 3PN. A fee to use the library may be payable to readers who are not Fellows of the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copy permission on application to The Archivist, Royal College of Surgeons of England 35-43 Lincoln Inn Fields London WC2A 3PN.

Physical characteristics:

Finding aids:


Detailed catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:



Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Found in Royal College of Surgeons Library August 2000.


Existence and location of originals:

Existence and location of copies:

Related material:

The film on chest surgery made by the British Council is at the British Film Institution.

Publication note:



Archivist's note: Prepared by Claire Jackson

Rules or conventions: National Council on Archives, Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997; ISAD(G), Second Edition, 2000.

Date(s) of descriptions: September 2000

Hospitals | Health services
Nurses | Medical personnel | Medical profession | Medical sciences
Photographs | Visual materials
Physicians | Medical personnel | Medical profession | Medical sciences
Surgery | Medical sciences
War | International conflicts
World War One (1914-1918) | World wars (events) | Wars (events)
Nurses x Paramedical personnel
Medical institutions
Social sciences
Social welfare

Personal names
Edwards | Arthur Tudor | 1890-1946 | surgeon

Corporate names
British Council