A.J. Taylor and Ministry of Works Guidebooks



Arnold Joseph Taylor (1911-2002) [see ODNB] wrote several of the guidebooks for England and Wales. In 1935 he was appointed Assistant Inspector to the Office of Works, and in 1946 Inspector of Ancient Monuments for Wales, Assistant Chief Inspector in 1954, and Chief Inspector in 1961 (to 1972).

The guidebooks are:

  • Minster Lovell Hall (1939; 2nd ed. 1958)
  • Raglan Castle (1950)
  • Monmouth Castle and Great Castle House (1951)
  • Basingwerk Abbey (1953)
  • Caernarvon Castle and Town Walls (1953) [replacing earlier 1929 guide by Peers]
  • Rhuddlan Castle (1955)
  • Conway Castle and Town Walls (1956)
  • The Jewel Tower, Westminster (1965)
  • Harlech Castle (1980) [replacing the guide prepared by Hemp and Peers]
  • Beaumaris Castle (1985) [with Richard Avent] [CADW Guide]


  1. […] The UCS Heritage seminars resume on Wednesday 7 October. The first will be given by Professor David Gill on ‘Inspectors, ancient monuments and heritage guidebooks’. This will look at the evolution of guidebooks for ancient monuments and historic buildings placed in state guardianship. These guides emerged in 1917 (see St Botolph’s Priory) and evolved into the familiar ‘blue’ guides of the Ministry of Works and Department of the Environment. The formation of Cadw, English Heritage, and Historic Scotland produced a new set of distinctive guidebooks although the texts of some can be traced back to the 1950s. The seminar will explore some of the personalities behind the creation of the guides, notably Sir Charles Peers, C.A. Ralegh Radford, and Arnold J. Taylor. […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s