Belfast Telegraph

George Orwell archive added to Unesco Memory Of The World International Register

The journalist and author’s personal collection is being honoured for its documentation of humanity.

George Orwell’s personal archive added to prestigious UNESCO register. (PA)
George Orwell’s personal archive added to prestigious UNESCO register. (PA)

The personal archive of British author and journalist George Orwell have been formally inscribed to the prestigious Unesco Memory Of The World International Register.

The Orwell Papers, consists of manuscript notebooks, diaries, letters and other personal papers, including photographs, belonging to the writer, born Eric Arthur Blair.

Among the collection are the first jottings of some of the most well-known words and phrases from Orwell’s books,  including Two Minutes Hate, and Newspeak from dystopian novel 1984.

The Wigan Pier quarter (Wigan Council/PA)

The Memory of the World Programme seeks to collect and safeguard documents and other materials deemed to have universal value for their documentation of humanity.

Orwell’s writings join  other UK-based documents on the global register such as the Magna Carta.

Orwell’s adopted son, Richard Blair said: “This prestigious award granted by Unesco to the Orwell Archives at UCL is a clear indication of the value attached to the works of George Orwell.

“Not only am I immensely proud of this achievement and what it means personally, but also to those who have put in so much hard work to bring about this singular recognition.”

The collection of Orwell’s notes were given to University College London (UCL) in 1960 on 1960 on permanent loan by his widow Sonia widow on behalf of the George Orwell Archive Trust.

John Hurt, Suzanna Hamilton and Richard Burton during filming for George Orwell’s 1984 at RAF Hullavington (PA)

Dr Paul Ayris, of UCL Library Services, said: “I am delighted that the papers of George Orwell held at UCL have been formally inscribed on the Unesco Memory of the World International Register.

“This is a prestigious award, and we are very pleased that the importance of this collection has been internationally recognised.”

As well as writing the celebrated novel that featured the character Big Brother, Orwell also penned Animal Farm, an allegory about the 1917 Russian Revolution and the Soviet Union during the reign of Joseph Stalin.

The journalist is also celebrated for his non-fictional writing, including 1937 essay The Road To Wigan Pier, which  documented his experiences of working class life in the north of England.

The award will be formally presented at the 2018 Unesco Memory Of The World UK Awards ceremony on Wednesday.

Press Association


From Belfast Telegraph