Museums and Heritage Networking and Volunteering Day

On Tuesday 2nd June, the School of History hosted staff and volunteers from around twenty local museums and heritage organisations, for the first of what is hoped to be an annual Museums and Heritage Networking and Volunteering Day. This event was organised in collaboration with the South East Museum Development Programme.

The aim of this event was to bring museum staff from the local area to campus and provide them with an opportunity to find out about what the School and the University does to help our students develop their employability skills, and to showcase how our students might be able to support them and their projects through work experience placements, volunteering, and internships. They also came for a chance to meet with current Kent students who are interested in undertaking volunteering opportunities in the heritage sector.

Groups from across Kent came along, including staff from national organisations such as the National Trust and English Heritage, to local museums and groups such as the Powell-Cotton Museum at Birchington, the RAF Manston Spitfire & Hurricane Memorial Museum, and the Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust. Delegates listened to talks from Kent Union about how it trains its volunteers, from the National Trust about their experience working with volunteers (the organisation has over 70,000 volunteers nationally!), and to staff from the University about how and why they could and should engage with the University and our students.

The event was a great success, particularly the main event of the day, the networking lunch. Students and staff met and discussed the interests and ways in which they could benefit one another in the future, and we look forward to seeing what opportunities develop out of these conversations.

All the talks and contact details for the speakers are listed on the South East Museum Development Programme’s website.

The School is always interested in engaging with groups and organisations in order to benefit our students, and to help our students discover ways to enhance their employability prospects through volunteering and work experience. If you would like to get involved with the School, please contact Jon Beer via email ( or by telephone (01227 827339).

School Fellow works on Magna Carta celebration

Centre for the History of Sciences Fellow Sarah Craske has been involved in the production of a new art installation, commissioned to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta, and unveiled to the Queen and senior royals today (15th June 2015).

Prince William with artist Hew Locke, who designed 'The Jurors'.

Prince William with artist Hew Locke, who designed ‘The Jurors’.

The piece, called ‘The Jurors’ by artist Hew Locke, has been installed at Runnymede, Surrey, where King John sealed the original document in 1215. It was unveiled to the Queen and other members of the Royal family, as well as Prime Minister David Cameron.

The installation includes 12 bronze chairs, casted by Sarah Craske and her team at Meltdowns Studios in Ramsgate.

Further information about the piece can be found here.

CHOTS Away Day 2015

Down House, the home of Charles Darwin, was the destination for this years' CHOTS away day

Down House, the home of Charles Darwin, was the destination for this years’ CHOTS away day

Staff from the Centre for the History of the Sciences (CHOTS) attended an Away Day at Down House in North Kent, the family home of scientist Charles Darwin, on Wednesday 3rd June.

Dr Rebekah Higgitt has written a blog post about the trip, which can be viewed over on the Centre’s Science Comma blog.

Leverhulme Trust Success

The School of History has once again been successful in the annual Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship competition.

Dr Temilola Alanamu will be joining the School to work with Dr Giacomo Macola on “Memories of Gender among the Postcolonial Youth of Lagos, Nigeria”.  This is the second Leverhulme success for the Centre for the Study of Colonialisms within the School, which was successful last year.


50th Anniversary History Projects – Witness Seminar

A group of University of Kent students in the 1970sAs part of the School of History’s 50th Anniversary History Projects, we are holding a Witness Seminar on the evening of Monday 8 June 2015 from 6:30-7:45pm in Grimond Lecture Theatre 1. This will take the form of a roundtable discussion, with past and present staff and students of the University exploring some of their experiences at Kent over the years.

The seminar will be chaired by Juliette Pattinson, Reader of History, and will include the following panellists:

  • Amy Harrison – 2nd year undergraduate student reading for a BA in History
  • Tim Luckhurst – Professor of Journalism and Head of the University’s Centre for Journalism
  • David Nightingale – Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Senior Lecturer in Ancient History
  • Doreen Rosman – A former Lecturer in History at Kent

The panel will be discussing their time at Kent, and audience members will be encouraged to ask questions and share their own experiences. The seminar will be followed by a drinks reception and buffet to launch an exhibition of student volunteers’ work on the University’s history to date in the Aphra Foyer (Grimond Building).

If you cannot make it along on the evening, the exhibition will be running from Monday 8 through to Friday 12 June, and we hope you can enjoy our volunteers work.

For more information about the event or the exhibition, please contact Dr Mark Hurst,

More information about the History Projects and celebration events can be found on the special University of Kent 50th anniversary website.