Sir Roger Thomas Baldwin Fulford CVO (24 November 1902 – 18 May 1983) was an English journalist, historian, writer and politician.
In the 1930s, he completed the editing of the standard edition of the diaries of Charles Greville. From the 1930s to the 1960s, he wrote several important biographies and other works. Between 1964 and 1981 he edited five volumes of letters between Queen Victoria and the Princess Royal. He was President of the Liberal Party from 1964 to 1965.
Life and career
Fulford was the younger son of Canon Frederick John Fulford, vicar of Flaxley, Gloucestershire, and his wife, Emily Constance née Ellis. Fulford was educated at Lancing College and Worcester College, Oxford University. In 1932, he qualified as a barrister, but never practised law.
From 1941 to 1942, Fulford worked in MI-5 F4. From 1942 to 1945, he was assistant private secretary to Sir Archibald Sinclair, the Secretary of State for Air. He stood as a Liberal Party candidate in three general elections: in 1929, he came second at Woodbridge; in 1945, he came third at Holderness; and, in 1950, he came third at Rochdale. In 1964–65, he was party president. For Penguin Books he wrote The Liberal Case for the general election of 1959, published alongside the contributions of Lord Hailsham and Roy Jenkins for the other two national parties. The Times called Fulford's piece "a highly civilised credo". In 1970, he was appointed C.V.O. and he was knighted in 1980.
In 1937, Fulford married Sibell Eleanor Maud née Adeane, widow of the Hon. Edward James Kay-Shuttleworth (d. 1917) and of the Rev. Hon. Charles Frederick Lyttelton (d. 1931). There were no children. Fulford was a member of The Literary Society and a committee member of the London Library.
Fulford died at his home, Barbon Manor, near Carnforth, aged 80.
Away from journalism, Fulford's first major literary work was as editor of the diaries of Charles Greville, in succession to Lytton Strachey, who died in 1932 leaving the work unfinished. The memoirs were eventually published in ten volumes, beginning in 1938.
Fulford's subsequent works concentrated on the same late Hanoverian period, beginning with a study of the lives of the six younger sons of George III (Royal Dukes, 1933) and their elder brother (George the Fourth, 1935), the Prince Consort (1949) and Queen Victoria (1951), followed by a study of a longer period in Hanover to Windsor (1960). In 1962 he published a biography of Samuel Whitbread, and in 1967 The Trial of Queen Caroline. Finally, he edited five volumes of the correspondence between Queen Victoria and her eldest daughter, the Empress Frederick of Germany: Dearest Child (1964), Dearest Mama (1968), Your Dear Letter (1971), Darling Child (1976), and Beloved Mama (1981).
Beyond his customary historical period, he published a satire of a political careerist, The Right Honourable Gentleman (1945), a history of Glyn's Bank (1953), and Votes for Women (1957), a study of the suffragettes, which won a prize of £5,000 from The Evening Standard.
- Hart-Davis, Rupert, "Fulford, Sir Roger Thomas Baldwin (1902–1983)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, January 2008, accessed 22 November 2008]
- The Times obituary, 19 May 1983, p. 14
- "Fulford, Sir Roger (Thomas Baldwin)", Who Was Who, 1920–2007, A & C Black, London; online edn, Oxford University Press, December 2007, accessed 23 November 2008
- Pincher, "Treachery," Random House, New York
- "Sibell Eleanor Maud (née Adeane), Lady Fulford (1890-1980), Former wife of Hon. Edward James Kay Shuttleworth and Hon. Charles Lyttelton and wife of Roger Fulford; daughter of Charles Robert Whorwood Adeane". National Portrait Gallery.
- Hart-Davis, letters of 29 May and 15 September 1957
- Hart-Davis, Rupert (ed): The Lyttelton/Hart-Davis Letters Vol 2 John Murray, London, 1979 ISBN 0-7195-3673-1
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