Another busy week but I thought I would start with the Tudors and Stuarts History Weekend 2021 to say the web site has gone live for bookings, and Matthew will set it up more fully early in January. Please do check it out because we have great speakers and fascinating topics: canterbury.ac.uk/tudors-stuarts
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/
Dr Diane Heath is in the process of ‘building’ the ‘medieval tile’ floor. So if you want to help her by providing your ‘medieval animal tile’ design, even if you cannot make it of gingerbread, please do send a photo of your design to her at email@example.com and in return she will send you a certificate. For after 800 years, it is important to remember that 7 July this week was a major anniversary of Thomas Becket’s Translation, and one of the main features of the new shrine in the Trinity Chapel was the magnificent pavement.
I thought I would begin by reporting that we sent our roundup of pre-modern Kent and Canterbury online resources to Dr David Rundle on Monday and hopefully soon it will be on the Kent MEMS Lib. As a further development of this idea, Dr Diane Heath and I, in conjunction with Michelle Crowther (CCCU Learning and Research Librarian), will start adding modern sources to form the CKHH Lib. In this we will have a section on museums in Kent that have a virtual presence with useful material for researchers, including a virtual tour of the Folkestone Museum compiled by a team at the museum with Martin Crowther. This all looks very exciting! As does the CCCU Bookshop’s new online facility: https://bookshop.canterbury.ac.uk/
As we are almost into May and lockdown measures are still in place, I thought this week I would take the blog back into the Middle Ages, which I’m sure will surprise no one! Also, I expect a sizeable number of people will know that I have been researching hospitals in medieval England, especially in Kent, off and on for longer than I care to think about. Consequently, with the emphasis on the sterling work being undertaken by hospitals and care/residential homes under the NHS banner at the moment, I thought a short piece on: who cared for the sick in medieval England – the role of the hospital, might be appropriate and of interest.
Thanks firstly to Dr Diane Heath for last week’s blog, and today I thought I would start with Professor Louise Wilkinson’s virtual ‘Farewell’ last Friday where she was joined by most members from History, several members of the School of Humanities administration team and Dr Harriet Kersey from CCCU Research, who is a former doctoral student of Louise’s. As all agreed, it is a great pity that such a great scholar and lovely, caring person is leaving CCCU after about sixteen years, but as her parents will still be here in Canterbury for the time being, we haven’t ‘lost’ her completely. Consequently, there will be a ‘proper Farewell’ once the lockdown is over when she will be given a rather special gift to mark everyone’s appreciation of what she has done for History and the university more widely.
This blog appears in the final week of Professor Louise Wilkinson’s time at Canterbury before she takes up her new appointment at the University of Lincoln. I, Diane Heath, am writing it instead of Sheila Sweetinburgh, but all of us at the Centre of Kent History and Heritage, and everyone (staff and students alike) in the School of Humanities at Canterbury Christ Church University shall miss her very much and wish her a wonderful time in Lincoln.
While governments – national, regional and local, continue to grapple with the situation, and a large number of businesses and charities are equally trying to manage, even survive – note, for example, the grave problems being experienced in the horticultural and agricultural sectors; universities, too, are feeling the strain. This is certainly the case sorting out what to do for the best for students regarding teaching, assessments and exams, and thus matters of progression and completion of degrees.
In this fast-moving world that we live in, I thought I would bring out a short update. For the health and safety of speakers, those attending, and all concerned, we have cancelled the following events. These are the Centre and FCAT lecture this Thursday 19 March; the joint Centre and KAS Local History Societies Forum on Saturday 21 March; the Becket Lecture on Friday 27 March; the Medieval Canterbury Weekend between Friday 3 and Sunday 5 April, and the Church, Saints and Seals day on Monday 18 May.
I thought I would start by saying that the university, like other educational institutions, is keeping abreast of the advice coming from Government in the current circumstances. Consequently, as and when I have anything definite, I’ll let you know regarding upcoming Centre events, and we will similarly inform those involved whether as speakers, attendees, volunteers etc. However, in the meantime individual vigilance is obviously important and there is plenty of information through official channels, including NHS England and other public health and safety organisations.