Nottingham Advantage Award Placement: Working on Westacott

This is a guest post by Sophie Burton, an undergraduate student in the Department of History. For the Nottingham Advantage Award ‘Experience Heritage’ module I have been conducting a weekly placement at Manuscripts and Special Collections. The placement has informed me about the different roles within the heritage sector. I have undertaken digitisation work on …

Celebrating Magna Carta

Eight hundred years ago today, King John affixed the Great Seal to Magna Carta, after a week of intense negotiations with the group of barons who had rebelled against his reign. It is probably one of the most famous failed peace treaties in history. Like his father and older brother before him, John believed the divine …

A General History of Elections

From online voter registration to fixed Parliamentary terms, this General Election has seen a few ‘firsts’. In this post, we take a very quick tour of elections through the ages. A dull campaign? The art of eye-catching election addresses – the leaflets prospective parliamentary candidates send to people in the constituency – took a while …

The Morning After the Nay Before

For anyone who has somehow missed the extensive – and sometimes heated – campaign, this morning the results of the Scottish Independence Referendum were announced. The Union between Scotland and England has been in force since May 1707, after both the Scottish and English Parliaments had passed their own separate Acts ratifying the Treaty of Union. …

Papers of a ‘Professional Revolutionary’

The next exhibition at Lakeside Arts Centre’s Weston Gallery features the papers of a local activist and Communist Party officer, Fred Westacott. Flyers, pamphlets and speeches in his personal archive document a lifetime of campaigning, as a supporter of a variety of local and international causes, from the Miners’ strikes to the Vietnam War protests. …

New cartoons acquired

We have recently had the opportunity to acquire some cartoons or “political sketches” by “H.B”, the pseudonym used by painter and cartoonist John Doyle (1797-1868).  Doyle was born in Dublin, and attended the Royal Dublin Society’s drawing school, where he was a pupil of the miniature painter John Comerford. He became a successful painter of horses, …

Connie Ford: Keepsakes of an Activist

Tom Kew, our guest blogger, has been working with Manuscripts and Special Collections on the Connie Ford archive on placement from the Arts Graduate Centre at The University of Nottingham. Through my placement with the Arts Graduate Centre, I was recently thrust onto the front lines of revolutionary politics, armed only with a pencil and …