fonds JWIL - Records of Jack Kenneth Willson-Pepper

Identity area

Reference code



Records of Jack Kenneth Willson-Pepper


  • c 1949-c 1965 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

0.02 cubic metres

2 boxes

Context area

Name of creator

(1904 - 2000)

Biographical history

Jack Kenneth Willson-Pepper (known as John) was a consultant in general surgery and later urology in the York Hospitals Group between 1937 and 1966. He was born in Folkestone on 1 November 1904 to Albert Edward Pepper and Mary Southee White. Willson was added to his name by deed poll to revive his grandmother's maiden name. Jack was educated at Tonbridge School and Jesus College, Cambridge, before completing his medical training at St Thomas' Hospital, London in 1929. He married Elvira van Tets, a nurse at St Thomas', in 1931. Jack held house officer posts at St Thomas', followed by posts as casualty medical officer and surgical registrar at Great Ormond Street Hospital. He moved to Newcastle-upon Tyne in 1934, as demonstrator of anatomy at the medical school and surgical registrar at the Royal Victoria Infirmary.

Willson-Pepper settled in general practice in York in 1936, initially joining the practice of Gerald Hughes, Arthur Lister and Charles MacKenzie, before being appointed honorary assistant surgeon to York County Hospital in 1937. During the Second World War he served as a surgical specialist in the Royal Army Medical Corps. In 1944, he was one of the first to enter liberated Brussels and was awarded the Croix Militaire by the Belgian government for his medical work there.

Back in York, Jack resigned his general practice partnership in order to concentrate on surgery, especially in urology. When the NHS was founded in 1948, he was appointed consultant surgeon to the York area. He and his colleagues, Harold Conyers, Robert Hall and Pulvertaft, founded the York Peptic Ulcer Research Trust, explored the place of Roux-en-Y anastomosis in relieving postgastrectomy symptoms, and took part in the first prospective randomised surgical trial comparing different surgical operations to cure duodenal ulcer.

Jack was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, a Fellow of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland, and an associate member of the British Association of Urological Surgeons. He served as President of the York Medical Society from 1958 to 1959 and was an active member of the York Georgian Society. He retired in 1964 and died from heart failure and peritonitis in the urological ward of York District Hospital on 20 January 2000.

Archival history

The archive was deposited at York City Archives (now York Explore) on 14 Jul 1980 by Mr J.K. Willson-Pepper

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The archive was transferred to the Borthwick Institute for Archives on 7 October 2016

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The correspondence and patient case notes of Mr Jack Kenneth Willson-Pepper FRCS, urological surgeon at York County Hospital, including:

Correspondence relating to the problems of surgery in the 1960s, referencing the replacement of the operating theatre lamp at York Military Hospital, hospital facilities, surgical services in St Vincent, statistics on operations carried out in York, fluoridation of the water supply in York, and pre-registration house officer posts Jul 1964-Dec 1965.

Case notes for individual patients treated in York County Hospital between the mid 1950s and the mid 1960s, filed in the alphabetical order of the surgical conditions from which they were suffering. These are a selection of cases that were of especial interest to Mr Willson-Pepper from a surgical perspective and represent a random sample of surgical work undertaken by a particular surgeon during that decade. They are not necessarily representative of the routine surgical work of the period. The case notes include four photographs of chest X-rays following an operation 17 Oct 1949 - 13 Dec 1949 (filed under L).

Printed report on Uretero-colic Anastomosis: representative tabulations relating to 1,673 patients prepared from information supplied by members and associate members of the British Association of Urological Surgeons, compiled by W.B. Fletcher F.S.S., Nuffield Bureau of Health and Sickness Records, Glasgow, Jun 1952.

J.K. Willson-Pepper's completed British Association of Urological Surgeons questionnaire Oct 1962, giving details of adrenal tumours treated at York City Hospital from 1 Jan 1946.


Further accruals are not expected

System of arrangement

The original order of the papers has been retained. Mr J.K. Willson-Pepper filed the patient case notes in the alphabetical order of the surgical conditions from which they were suffering, although he left some 1965 case notes un-filed.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Closed subject to the terms of data protection laws until 2065. Not to be consulted without the permission of York Hospital Management Committee.

Conditions governing reproduction

Not to be copied without the permission of York Hospital Management Committee.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

The archive has not yet been catalogued.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Related records are deposited at the Borthwick Institute as part of the archives of York County Hospital, York Peptic Ulcer Research Trust, York Medical Society, and York Georgian Society.

Notes area

Alternative identifier(s)

Access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

GB 193

Rules and/or conventions used

ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description, International Council on Archives (2nd edition, 2000); Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names, National Council on Archives (1997)

Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion

Created on 01.12.2016


  • English



Archivist's note

Created by Dr Amanda Jones on 01.12.2016

Accession area