de Grummond Collection

McCain Library and Archives
University Libraries
University of Southern Mississippi


Collection Number
Collection Dates
Collection Volume
.60 cu.ft. (2 boxes)

Biographical Sketch | Scope & Content | Related Collections | Series & Subseries | Box Inventory


Material received from Nina Bawden in 1975.


Noncirculating; available for research.


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Biographical Sketch

Nina Mary Mabey was born in London on January 19, 1925, and lived there until she evacuated to a mining valley in Wales during World War II. She received a scholarship to Ilford county high school and eventually procured a B.A.(1946) and M.A. (1951) from Somerville College, Oxford University. She was Justice of the Peace for Surrey from 1968-1976, and was a regular reviewer for the Daily Telegraph.

After earning a degree in philosophy, politics and economics at Oxford, she married Henry Bawden. She began writing when she became a mother of two boys, completing ten novels for adults while her children were young, and publishing her first children's book in 1963. In her novels, Bawden consistently attempted to portray children and adults interacting because she felt that most books for young people neglected these crucial relationships.

Since her first adult novel was published in 1953, Bawden has written more than thirty novels for children and adults. She received the Guardian Award for Children's Fiction in 1975 for The Peppermint Pig, and the Yorkshire Post Novel of the Year Award in 1977 for Afternoon of a Good Woman. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Bawden married her second husband, former head of BBC World Service Austen Kark, in 1954. Austen and Nina Kark, who had both been appointed CBE in 1987 and 1995 respectively, were together until a tragic train derailment in England took Austen's life in 2002. Although Nina Bawden was injured in the same accident, she made a full recovery. She passed away in 2012.