Conference | Telling Her Story

Posted in conferences (to attend) by Editor on January 12, 2018

From the Women’s History Network:

Telling Her Story: Women’s History, Heritage, and the Built Environment
Wrest Park, Bedfordshire, 19 March 201

Organized by Megan Leyland, Roey Sweet, and Andrew Roberts

Telling Her Story will bring together heritage professionals and academics to explore the diverse roles and experiences of women at historic sites. Whether in country houses or castles, women have played a pivotal role in shaping the built environment and in influencing the course of history. Yet, more often than not, their voices are marginalised or missing from the historical record and from interpretation at heritage sites.

This conference seeks to uncover the many and varied experiences of women at historic properties in the care of English Heritage and other heritage organisations. It aims to move beyond stock biographies of famous and extraordinary women to discover the many diverse stories of women from all walks of life, to offer new perspectives on better-known individuals and to critique narratives and interpretations which continue to be constructed principally around the experiences of men.

This conference is being jointly organised by English Heritage and the University of Leicester, and has been generously supported by the Women’s History Network Small Grant Scheme. Dr. Megan Leyland (English Heritage), Prof. Roey Sweet (University of Leicester), Dr. Andrew Roberts (English Heritage).

Tickets, £30, are available by calling our dedicated ticket sales team on +44(0) 370 333 1183. A limited number of free tickets for students / unwaged are available; to apply, please contact megan.leyland@english-heritage.org.uk with why the conference is relevant to your research, interests, or work. Tickets will be allocated on a first come first serve basis. Please note, this programme is subject to change.


9:30  Coffee

10:00  Welcome and Introduction

10:10  Castles and Warfare
• Rachel Delman (University of Oxford), Writing medieval women back into castle narratives
• Karen Dempsey (University of Reading), Outside the can(n)on: Telling inclusive stories of the medieval past
• Jessica Malay (University of Huddersfield), Anne Clifford’s transformation of Westmorland through the construction of households
• Emma Turnbull (University of Oxford), Remembering resistance: Female activism during the English Civil Wars

10:10  Silent Voices
• Helen Bates (University of Leicester), The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth? New interpretations of women at Lincoln Castle Victorian Prison
• Nigel Cavanagh (Network Archaeology), An alternative focus for industrial heritage: Women’s lives in Elsecar, ca. 1780–1870
• Kate O’Neill (RCA/ V&A), Capturing the invisible? Photography and female domestic servants in the country house, 1850–1920
• Elena Settimini (University of Leicester), Demeter’s daughters: The representation of women within a vineyard landscape

12:00  Lunch

1:00  Eighteenth-Century Female Patronage
• Ruth Larsen (University of Derby), Beyond the withdrawing room: Exploring notions of gendered spaces in the eighteenth-century country house
• Lydia Hamlett (University of Cambridge), Revealing women’s stories through mural painting, 1680–1720
• Amy Boyington (University of Cambridge), Female architectural patronage in eighteenth-century Britain

1:00  Written out of History
• Judith Phillips (Bowes Museum/ Teesside University), Mrs. Bowes’s mansion, museum, and galleries: Joséphine Bowes and The Bowes Museum
• Louise Devoy (Royal Observatory, Greenwich), Observatory life: Adding domestic history and female voices to the story of the Royal Observatory
• Eleanor Sier (Toynbee Hall), Kate Bradley (University of Kent), and Lucinda Matthews-Jones (Liverpool John Moores University), Toynbee Hall: Mother of settlements

2:15  Coffee

2:30  Connecting People, Space, and Place
• Hannah Worthen (University of Hull), Gender and the hidden histories of English landed estates
• Emma Purcell (University of Leicester), The impact of heiresses on the Montagu property network, ca. 1749–1827
• Jon Stobart (Manchester Metropolitan University), Housekeeper, correspondent and confidante: The under-told story of Mrs Hayes of Charlecote Park, ca. 1740–60

2:30  Heritage Industry Approaches
• Rachael Lennon (National Trust), Challenging histories: Women and power
• Morvern French and Stefan Sagrott (Historic Environment Scotland), Telling their stories: From warriors to witches, and everything in between
• Megan Leyland (English Heritage), Telling the story of England: Women’s history at English Heritage

4:00  Closing Discussion / Tour

Exhibitions and Posters
Exhibition material on display throughout the conference includes The Women of Wrest Park (the Wrest Park Volunteer History Group, English Heritage), Uncovering Women’s Voices in the Richmond Castle Cell Block (the Richmond Castle Cell Block Project volunteers, English Heritage), and Marble Hill Revived (English Heritage), as well as academic posters.


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