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Leonard Behrens Papers

Date range: 1916-1976.

Sir Leonard Behrens (1890–1978), was a prominent Manchester businessman and a leading member of the Liberal and Jewish communities within the city.

He was a partner and then director of the textile firm founded by his grandfather, Sir Jacob Behrens & Sons, travelling throughout Europe on its behalf.

He was international in his outlook, working tirelessly for the League of Nations Association and later the United National Association; as vice-president of the World Federation of United Nations Associations he chaired its Stockholm conference in 1951.

He was also president of the national Liberal Party, 1955–7.

Within his home city he was a director of the Chamber of Commerce, president of the Manchester Liberal Federation and the Reform Club, and chairman of the Hallé Concerts Society.

The collection contains:

  • diaries
  • personal correspondence
  • files relating to the United Nations (1946-1975), the Liberal Party (1949-1974), the BBC (1944-1958), the Serbian Relief Fund (1916-1919), and the Hallé Orchestra (1952-1972)
  • volumes of newspaper cuttings and photographs on the Irish rebellion, the United Nations, the Liberal Party, the Hallé Orchestra and Choir, and the German Democratic Republic

Finding aids

Outline list.


The John Rylands Library

Using the reading rooms in the John Rylands Library