Description: Hugo Dunn-Meynell (1926-2013) was an adman, businessman and writer. In 1957 he joined the advertising agency Osborne-Peacock as manager of their London TV department. In 1965 he started his own agency Dunn-Meynell, Keefe which later became part of Osborne Advertising.
Hugo Dunn-Meynell worked in the advertising industry until 1978, the year he became Chairman of The International Wine & Food Society, and eventually its CEO.
The Dunn-Meynell Collection comprises: publications, press cuttings, articles, correspondence, biographical information, business papers, photographs and other material.
Level: Collection (Fonds)
Alt Ref No.: HAT21_589, HAT21_589(2)
Extent: 8 boxes
Admin History: Hugo Arthur Dunn-Meynell (1926-2013) was an adman, businessman, writer, lecturer and broadcaster - and a longtime lover of good food and wine.
Dunn-Meynell's father Arthur Dunn was a feather merchant, one of the traditional tradesmen of the City of London and his mother was descended from a proud recusant family who were Lords of the Manors of Yarm and Sowerby in Yorkshire until the 20th century. Young Hugo was educated at the John Fisher School and the Law Society School of Law. In 1942, at the age of sixteen, Hugo volunteered for the Royal Navy where he served until 1947 including a period of service on the minesweeper HMS Wave during World War Two. From 1947-1952 Hugo worked as a 'Bluebutton' or trainee stockbroker at the London Stock Exchange. In 1952 he joined Finders Ltd, the London-based company founded in 1947 as a service to take busy people's telephone calls while they were absent from work or home. The company expanded to become a general information and fact-finding service pledged 'to find anything, any person, any service 24 hours a day, seven days a week - every week' (Daily Dispatch, 24 August 1954), and started the credit card business in Britain (under licence from Diners Club). As Managing Director, Hugo became known as 'Mr Knowledge', thanks to the firm's 'universal swiftness at providing anything from 300 male toads to the address of an ice-skating rink in Baghdad' (source: https://www.stbrides.com/hugo-dunn-meynell). As part of his job he toured America under the auspices of the British Travel and Holidays Association and 'made many television appearances extolling the delights of visiting Britain' (source: 'Hugo Dunn-Meynell - some notes' from his archive collection at HAT).
In 1957 Hugo joined the advertising agency Osborne-Peacock as manager of their London TV department. In 1965 he started his own agency Dunn-Meynell, Keefe (DMK) which merged with Osborne-Peacock in 1967 to form the Osborne Group. In an introductory booklet for the new agency it was stated that 'DMK has evolved its own unique principle of advertising. It is called the EBT method. EBT stands for Emotional Buying Trigger'. In 1972 DMK and Charles Higham (also part of the Osborne Group) were merged with Osborne-Peacock to form Osborne Advertising. The other major agency within the group, Lonsdale Crowther, remained as a separate unit and was renamed as Lonsdale Crowther Osborne. From 1967-1978 Hugo served as Deputy Chairman and Client Service Director of the Osborne Group. Advertisers handled over the years included Abbey National Building Society, Mackintosh's confectionery, Spillers animal foods and a host of smaller accounts ranging from contraceptive manufacturers to the Catholic Missionary Society plus Elliotts footwear, where the agency created a sensation by using virtually nude women in its London Transport posters. For more details on Dunn-Meynell, Keefe’s celebrated 1967 Elliott boots ‘French skin’ ads see:
At Osborne, at different times, he held special responsibility for Japanese and Continental business and Caribbean interests and for key activity in other spheres (information from Hugo Dunn-Meynell's CV in the HDM collection). The 1965 edition of the Who's Who in Advertising & Public Relations directory notes that Dunn-Meynell was a member of the Eccentric Club of London.
Hugo's distinguished advertising career was summarised in an In Memoriam written by his second wife Alice Wooledge Salmon Dunn-Meynell for the Lansdowne Journal: 'From young 1950s' chief of Finders Ltd which introduced credit cards to Britain under licence from Diners Club, Hugo migrated to advertising by means of Osborne-Peacock, where, as London manager of its new television department, he produced over a hundred commercials, many of the earliest transmitted live. In 1965, he started his own agency, Dunn-Meynell, Keefe (DMK), retiring thirteen years later as Chairman of Lonsdale Advertising International' (Lansdowne Journal, 2013/14).
Hugo Dunn-Meynell worked in the advertising industry until 1978 when he became Chairman of The International Wine & Food Society (founded 1933): 'On his retirement from managing the society in 1998, he received a bar to its gold medal for his services to gastronomy, the only person in over 70 years to be given that accolade' (from obituary in The Guardian, 13 February 2013). His publications included co-authorship of A Wine Record (1969 with later editions) and, with Alice Wooledge Salmon, The Wine & Food Society Menu Book (1983). In 1984, he was instrumental in founding The Guild of Food Writers.
For obituaries of Hugo Dunn-Meynell see: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/feb/13/hugo-dunn-meynell
There is also a record of his memorial service at St Bride's Church, Fleet Street: https://www.stbrides.com/hugo-dunn-meynell/