Fonds BC1072 - Sir Richard Luyt Papers

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Sir Richard Luyt Papers


  • 1929-1994 (Creation)

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ca.3500 items

Name of creator


Biographical history

Richard Edmonds Luyt was born in Cape Town in 1915. He was educated at the Diocesan College and at UCT, and was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford. At both school and university he excelled at sport, particularly cricket and rugby, and achieved an Oxford Blue in Rugby. He decided to enter the Colonial Service and, at the outbreak of World War 2, was sent to the then Northern Rhodesia. From there he was assigned to Ethiopia where he was a sergeant in an Ethiopian Guerilla unit during the stand against the Italians. He was awarded the DCM for his services in Ethiopia.
After the war he served in Kenya, and in Northern Rhodesia (Zambia) during its transition to independence. From there he was sent to oversee the transition to independence in British Guiana, later Guyana. He was appointed Principal of UCT in 1968 and saw the university through a turbulent period of its history.
A man of many parts, he was always involved in many aspects of the life of the community in general. UCT awarded him an honorary DLitt in 1982.
In recognition of his contributions to the Colonial Service he was awarded the CMG in 1960, the KCMG in 1964 and the KCVO and GCMG in 1966.
He died in 1994 at the age of 78.

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Scope and content

These papers reflect the activities and interests of Sir Richard Luyt for the period 1967-1993. Among the personal papers are correspondence, invitations received and notes for speeches, all providing evidence of the breadth of his interests. His service during World War 2 and his involvement in the administration of British Colonies after the war are well documented.
The UCT section includes papers on several controversial incidents before, during and after his tenure as Principal. A concerned involvement in community affairs, education, politics and sport is indicated in the papers of the various organisations in which he was actively involved.


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No restrictions apply

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  • English

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  • English



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