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Royal Commonwealth Society : West Indies 1970-1973

Marnham, John Ewart, 1916-1985

Royal Commonwealth Society

<p style='text-align: justify;'>The majority of this group (AA-CC) relate to St Lucia, including views of the house and grounds, and of flora and fauna. There are also transparencies of visits to other Associated States, Dominica (DD); St Vincent and the Grenadines (EE); Grenada (FF), Antigua, St Christopher [St Kitts] and Nevis and the remaining Leeward Islands which remained dependent territories, Montserrat and the British Virgin Islands (GG). A slide of a map of the West Indies precedes the geographical sequence, and is filed at the beginning of AA.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>John Ewart Marnham was born in Hampstead on 24 January 1916, the elder son of Col. Arthur Ewart Marnham (1890-1976) of Foxley Grove, Holyport, Berkshire. After education at Mill Hill School, he went to Jesus College, Cambridge. In 1938, he was appointed an Assistant Principal in the Colonial Office and was commissioned as Second Lieutenant RA (Territorial Army). He served with the British Expeditionary Force in 1939-1940 and was promoted to Captain in the latter year and Major in 1942. He returned to Europe with the British Liberation Army in 1944, was mentioned in despatches, and awarded the Military Cross. In 1944, he married Susan, eldest daughter of Walter Foster (formerly Friedenstein) of Vienna; they had two sons, Brian and Nicholas. He returned to the Colonial Office after the war, was promoted to Principal in 1946, and after serving as Secretary to the British Guiana and British Honduras Settlement Commission in 1947-1948, was promoted to Assistant Secretary. In 1955 he was appointed C.M.G. Marnham also continued his military career. In 1964 he became Assistant Under-Secretary of State in the Colonial Office and from 1966-1967 in the Foreign Office. He then held three overseas posts as Consul-General in Johannesburg 1967-1970, British Government Representative in the West Indian Associated States during 1970-1973 and Ambassador to Tunisia, 1973-1975. From 1977-1981 Marnham was Clerk in the Committee Office of the House of Commons. He died on 28 December 1985.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'> John Ewart Marnham became British Government Representative to the West Indian Associated States in 1970. In 1967 Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Christopher and Nevis, and St Lucia (joined in 1969 by St Vincent) were given the status of Associated States and this continued until they all achieved independence between 1973 and 1983. Marnham was based in St Lucia and had a house at Ciceron, just outside the capital Castries. He visited other Associated States, the remaining Leeward Islands and Guyana (in 1970). He was on leave from late 1971 to early 1972, and though his appointment continued to 1973, he probably returned to England towards the end of 1972.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'> Marnham referred to his recreations as reading, gardening and riding, surprisingly omitting photography, since he was clearly not only an enthusiastic but a skilled photographer. This collection records his travels, displaying a considerable interest in wildlife as well as in gardening.</p>

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