This is the Centre’s 300th blog! To mark this splendid milestone, I thought I would reflect on the Centre’s achievements since the blog started almost six years ago in October 2014 when I highlighted Dr Martin Watt’s forthcoming lecture on the WWI War Memorial in what had been St Gregory’s church (now CCCU’s St Gregory’s Centre): https://blogs.canterbury.ac.uk/kenthistory/war-memorial-lecture/
This week I want to feature a few of the events that will be taking place during the Medieval Canterbury Weekend 2020 and link them to medieval Canterbury. However, before that I just want to say that Dr Martin Watts will be speaking at the Canterbury branch meeting of the Historical Association tomorrow (Thursday) evening at Kent College. His topic will be his book on the Royal Marines in the Second World War. If you want a taster, please see this earlier blog and if you live locally and this sounds interesting, the local HA will be delighted to see you at 7pm: https://blogs.canterbury.ac.uk/kenthistory/from-anglo-saxons-to-wwii-exploring-canterbury-faversham-and-the-royal-marines/
Now that we are into October, it is great to report that the School of Humanities’ taught Masters degrees in both Modern History and Medieval and Early Modern Studies are up and running, which is in addition to a taught Masters in English Literature. There may be others but these I know about. The reason I mention it is that my option module group, who are studying late medieval and Tudor Canterbury, might be said to be benefitting from the Centre’s presence at Canterbury Christ Church. For those who may be interested, we had an enjoyable and instructive walk through ‘medieval and Tudor Canterbury’ last Wednesday and will be exploring the city’s topography through maps this week.
To a degree this follows on from last time in that again there is a maritime theme to this short blog. Firstly, although I wasn’t able to attend this year, I have a brief report from Dr Martin Watts about Whitstable Harbour Day, which took place last Saturday. As an ex-merchant seaman, Martin is keen to promote all things nautical and, as he says, it was another excellent day.
In some ways a great deal has happened this week and in other ways very little, a sort of treading water time before various decisions are made and implemented. On a positive note it is now two weeks to the Maritime Kent through the Ages conference and some of the final arrangements are being put in place for Richard Holdsworth’s keynote lecture on Friday 22 June: ‘Kent, the Royal Navy and the Defence of Britain’ at 7pm [wine reception from 6.30pm]. All welcome, booking not required.
The first item I thought I would bring to you this week is news of the rescheduled Becket Lecture that will now take place on Tuesday 6 March at 6pm in The Michael Berry Lecture Theatre, Old Sessions House. As you may remember, the lecture will be given by Dr Marie-Pierre Gelin (UCL) and she will be speaking on ‘Thomas Becket and his Predecessors in Canterbury’. Booking not required, and we at the Centre will look forward to seeing you there.
Keeping with the maritime theme, at least for part of this blog, I thought I would report on a presentation I went to last Saturday at the Beaney in Canterbury. This was the second in a series of lectures and other events organised by the Kent History and Library Centre at Maidstone under the title ‘Life along the Kent Coast’ that works with an exhibition at Maidstone called ‘Bawleys, Barbels and Owlers’.