February 10, 2017, by Charlotte Anscombe

The Human Cost of War

The human cost of civil wars is to be investigated in a new study from the universities of Leicester, Nottingham, Southampton and Cardiff.

‘Welfare, Conflict and Memory during and after the English Civil Wars, 1642-1700’ is a four-year project funded by a major grant of over £800,000 from the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

The project is being led by Dr Andrew Hopper (Centre for English Local History, University of Leicester), and the co-investigators are Dr David Appleby (University of Nottingham), Dr Lloyd Bowen (University of Cardiff) and Professor Mark Stoyle (University of Southampton).

The project is based at the University of Leicester and starts on 1 June 2017. It will analyse how ordinary men and women remembered the conflict, and how victims of the war negotiated with authorities for charitable relief.

The main output will be a free website containing photographs and transcriptions of every petition for relief from maimed soldiers and war widows in England and Wales relating to losses suffered in the Civil Wars.

Genealogists and family historians will also benefit from the website’s searchable list of claimants to military welfare in these years, which will include details of the sums awarded to them. This website, together with a separate education website for schools entitled ‘Death and Survival in the Civil Wars’ will be developed and hosted by The University of Nottingham’s Multimedia Online Archive Service (MOAS).

Dr David Appleby from The University of Nottingham, said: “History isn’t just made by the rich and powerful, but by ordinary people. The team is really excited by the opportunity to give ordinary men and women the chance to speak for themselves after more than three centuries of silence.

“With the expert help of the University of Nottingham’s MOAS, we’ll be able to do  just that for these maimed soldiers and war widows.”

The project team will be collaborating with the recently established National Civil War Centre at Newark Museum, Nottinghamshire. Building on the Museum’s successful ‘Battle-Scarred’ exhibition about civil-war military welfare, the project and Museum will collaborate in organising special events, exhibitions and teachers’ workshops.

The project will also support the production of a research monograph and articles by the project team as well as an international conference and two collections of scholarly essays.



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