LAWTON, Lancelot Francis  [1880-1947]

It is appropriate to remember author and historian Lancelot Lawton in current times as he was in the 1930’s an outspoken champion of the Ukraine, calling for its independence from a series of overbearing neighbouring states.

Lancelot Francis Lawton was born in Liverpool on 28th December 1880, the son of journalist Joseph and his wife Elizabeth who lived at 53 Upper Hope Place L1. After attending St Francis Xavier College he followed his father into the world of journalism and the early years of the 20th century found him in Tokyo reporting for the Daily Telegraph on the Russo-Japanese War. He also spent time in Russia both before and after the revolutions of 1917 and wrote two notable works, The Russian Revolution 1917-1926 (1927) and An Economic History of Soviet Russia (1932).

The 1930s saw him producing various reports and articles about Ukraine and in 1935 he addressed a House of Commons committee stating that “the chief problem in Europe today is the Ukrainian problem”. He urged the government to support the Ukrainian movement for independence and was a founder of the Anglo-Ukrainian Committee.

Lancelot Lawton died in Cambridge in September 1947 aged 66. Some of his writings from the 1930s were collected and published in 2006 by the Ukrainian historian Serhiy Kot.

Upper Hope Place

The side of the road on which Lawton lived is now part of the Liverpool Philharmonic site but the remaining houses give a guide as to the stature of his residence.


The limited Wikipedia entry is as good a source as I have found. A copy of his 1939 leaflet Ukraina: Europe's Greatest Problem can be read on the website. His books are still widely available from online dealers.