Philip Allen, Baron Allen of Abbeydale

Philip Allen, Baron Allen of Abbeydale, GCB (8 July 1912, Sheffield – 27 November 2007, Windsor, Berkshire)[1] was a British civil servant.

Education and early life

He was the son of Arthur Allen and Louie Tipper[2] and educated at King Edward VII School in Sheffield and Queens' College, Cambridge where he read Law. He came top of his year in the Civil Service administrative examinations in 1934.[3]


Allen joined the Home Office in 1934 and served in the War Cabinet (1943–44), then as Deputy Secretary to the Ministry of Housing and Local Government (1955–60). He then became Deputy Under-Secretary of State at the Home Office (1960–62), Second Secretary at HM Treasury (1963–66), and Permanent Under-Secretary of State at the Home Office (1966–72).

Timothy Evans

As deputy chairman of the Prison Commission for England and Wales from 1950–52, he advised against a reprieve for Timothy Evans, hanged in 1950 for the murder of his baby daughter at 10 Rillington Place, London. He also thought that Evans was guilty of the murder of his wife, for which Evans had not been prosecuted. Evans was pardoned in 1966 and Evans' neighbour, John Christie, was held responsible for strangling his own wife and five other women as well as Evans' wife, to which he confessed. When the Home Office files were published, Allen expressed his deep regret at the advice he had given.[2]

Derek Bentley

Together with Permanent Under-Secretary Sir Frank Newsam, Allen unsuccessfully urged a reprieve for Derek Bentley, who was hanged aged 19 in 1953 for the murder of a policeman. Bentley, who was already under arrest at the time, had allegedly called to an armed accomplice, Christopher Craig, "Let him have it, Chris!", when they were caught in a burglary. The remark, if made, was ambiguous, possibly urging surrender of Craig's gun, rather than inciting Craig to murder. In 1998, Bentley received a posthumous pardon. Craig was imprisoned, being under-age for execution, and was later released.

Honours and roles

Allen was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 1954 Birthday Honours,[4] promoted to Knight Commander (KCB) in the 1964 Birthday Honours[5] and to Knight Grand Cross (GCB) in the 1970 Birthday Honours.[6]

In 1975, under the provisions of the Referendum Act, he oversaw as "Chief Counting Officer" for the European Communities membership referendum on 5 June, the first referendum ever to be held across the United Kingdom and saw voters approve continued membership by 67% of voters to 32% on a national turnout of 64%.

Announced in the 1976 Birthday Honours,[7] Allen was created a life peer as Baron Allen of Abbeydale, of the City of Sheffield, on 12 July 1976.[8] He sat in the House of Lords as a crossbencher. From 1973 to 1978 he was a member of the Pearson commission.

He was chairman of the council of Royal Holloway College during its merger with Bedford College in 1985.

Personal life

In 1938 he married Marjorie Coe (d. 2002). They had no children.[3] He lived for many years in Englefield Green, Surrey,


  1. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, accessed 12 June 2011 - subscription required
  2. ^ a b Obituary in The Guardian, 11 December 2007 accessed 12 June 2011
  3. ^ a b Obituary including picture, The Daily Telegraph 29 November 2007, accessed 12 June 2011 Archived 7 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "No. 40188". The London Gazette (Supplement). 10 June 1954. p. 3260.
  5. ^ "No. 43343". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 June 1964. p. 4939.
  6. ^ "No. 45117". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 June 1970. p. 6367.
  7. ^ "No. 46919". The London Gazette (Supplement). 4 June 1976. p. 8015.
  8. ^ "No. 46962". The London Gazette. 15 July 1976. p. 9681.
Government offices
Preceded by
Sir Charles Cunningham
Permanent Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department
1966 to 1972
Succeeded by
Sir Arthur Peterson
Allen (surname)

Allen is a Celtic surname, originating in Scotland, and common in Ireland, Wales and England. It is a variation of the surname MacAllen and may be derived from two separate sources: Ailin, in Scottish and Irish Gaelic, means both "little rock" and "harmony", or it may also be derived from the Celtic Aluinn, which means "handsome". Variant spellings include Alan, Allan, etc. The noble family of this surname, from which a branch went to Portugal, is descended of one Alanus de Buckenhall.

In Ireland, Allen is the Anglicization of the Gaelic name Ó h-Ailín. Allen is the 41st most common surname in England.

Deaths in November 2007

The following is a list of notable deaths in November 2007.

Entries for each day are listed alphabetically by surname. A typical entry lists information in the following sequence:

Name, age, country of citizenship at birth, subsequent country of citizenship (if applicable), reason for notability, cause of death (if known), and reference.

List of Honorary Fellows of Queens' College, Cambridge

This is a list of Honorary Fellows of Queens' College, Cambridge.

Philip Allen, Baron Allen of Abbeydale

Sir Arthur Armitage

Andrew Bailey

Sir Harold Bailey

Sir John Banham

Henry Bovey

Sir Derek Bowett

Sir Stephen Brown

Sir Reader Bullard

Henry Chadwick

Frederic Chase

Sir Humphrey Cripps

Sir Andrew Crockett

Edward Cullinan

Kenneth Dadzie

Sir Richard Dearlove

Joost de Blank

Mohamed A. El-Erian

Charles Falconer, Baron Falconer of Thoroton

Michael Foale

Stephen Fry

Sir Frederick Gentle

Mike Gibson

M. S. Gill

Paul Greengrass

Thomas Hannay

Sir Martin Harris

Demis Hassabis

Robert Haszeldine

Richard Hickox

Herbert Loewe

Emily Maitlis

Peter Mathias

Ronald Oxburgh, Baron Oxburgh

Sir Thomas Padmore

Alison Peacock

Sir William Peel

John Polkinghorne

Sir Samuel Provis

Osborne Reynolds

Herbert Edward Ryle

Mark Santer

Bernardo Sepulveda Amor

Awn Shawkat Al-Khasawneh

Sidney Smith

Edward James Stone

Sir Morris Sugden

Graham Swift

Hugh Thomas, Baron Thomas of Swynnerton

Sir Shenton Thomas

Robert John Tillyard

Charles Tomlinson

Sir David Walker

List of Old Edwardians (Sheffield)

This is a list of some notable alumni of King Edward VII School, Sheffield, and its various predecessor schools, arranged roughly chronologically.

List of Royal Holloway, University of London people

The following is a list of Royal Holloway, University of London people, including alumni, members of faculty and fellows. It is not exhaustive.

List of life peerages (1958–1979)

This is a list of life peerages in the Peerage of the United Kingdom created under the Life Peerages Act 1958 from the time the Act came into effect to 1979, grouped by prime minister. During this period there were five prime ministers: three Conservatives, Harold Macmillan, Alec Douglas-Home, and Edward Heath, and two from the Labour Party, Harold Wilson (who served twice) and James Callaghan.

Philip Allen

Philip or Phillip Allen may refer to:

Philip Allen, Baron Allen of Abbeydale (1912–2007), British civil servant

Philip Allen (Assemblyman) (1832–1915), American politician from Wisconsin

Philip Allen (politician) (1785–1865), American politician from Rhode Island

Philip K. Allen (1910–1996), American educator and politician in the Massachusetts Senate

Phillip R. Allen (1939–2012), American stage, film, and television actor

Phillip E. Allen, American engineer

Philip Allen (footballer) (1902–1992), British footballer

Timothy Evans

Timothy John Evans (20 November 1924 – 9 March 1950) was a Welshman falsely convicted and hanged for the murder of his wife and infant daughter at their residence at 10 Rillington Place in Notting Hill, London. In January 1950, he was tried for and convicted of the murder of his daughter. He was sentenced to death by hanging, a sentence that was later carried out. During his trial, Evans had accused his downstairs neighbour, John Christie, of committing the murders.

Three years after Evans's execution, Christie was found to be a serial killer who had murdered six other women in the same house, including his own wife. Before his execution, Christie confessed to murdering Mrs. Evans. An official inquiry concluded in 1966 that Christie had also murdered Evans's daughter, and Evans was granted a posthumous pardon.

The case generated much controversy and is acknowledged as a serious miscarriage of justice. Along with those of Derek Bentley and Ruth Ellis, the case played a major part in the abolition of capital punishment in the United Kingdom for murder in 1965.


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