A new historic map of Swansea

The Historic Towns Trust is planning to produce a historic map of Swansea and the Mumbles, showing the layout of the city in its medieval and industrial past. Swansea was a major medieval town, part of the lordship of Glamorgan, with a castle whose ruins still dominate the city centre. Much of the Norman castle of Oystermouth, in the Mumbles, survives and remains a big attraction to locals and tourists. In the modern era, Swansea’s economy was industrial, with a thriving port and a big copper works in the nineteenth century. By focusing on these two historical periods, the map will capture Swansea and the Mumbles at times of economic growth, showing the city’s ability to use its unique location and resources to renew itself with energy and vision.

There is a fundraising campaign associated with the map, to cover the costs of research, cartography, and printing. To support the campaign, download the attached flyer. For further details, email helen.fulton@bristol.ac.uk

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Map of Bristol 1480

The Historic Towns Trust, supported by funding from the University of Bristol and local history societies, has published A Map of Bristol in 1480: A Medieval Merchant City. The map is a reconstruction of the city as it was described by William Worcestre, a high ranking official who was a native of Bristol and described its streets and buildings in great detail. Worcestre’s description, combined with archaeological information and extensive historical research, has allowed a team of leading Bristol historians and archaeologists to reconstruct Worcestre’s Bristol. The map is printed on a single fold-out sheet with an OS map of 1918 in the background. On the reverse is a detailed description of the churches, religious houses, castle walls, inns, taverns, and houses belonging to the most prosperous merchants in this major port town. The project was led by Professor Helen Fulton (University of Bristol) as part of ‘Making Bristol Medieval’, funded by the Research Enterprise Development Knowledge Exchange Fund. The cartography and design were by Giles Darkes of the Historic Towns Trust and the introduction was written by Professor Peter Fleming (University of the West of England). Research for the map was undertaken by Dr Robert H. Jones (formerly Bristol City Council), Dr Pete Insole (Bristol City Council), Professor Roger Leech (University of Southampton), and Dr Bethany Whalley (University of Bristol). The map is £9.99 and can be ordered from bookshops using the ISBN 978-0-9934698-7-9.



Helen Fulton wins Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship

Helen Fulton has been awarded a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship from 2020–2022 to work on a project called ‘Medieval Welsh Political Poetry’.

The project will result in an edition of medieval Welsh poetry that throws light on the politics of Wales and England in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and a study of the Welsh Marcher lord, Sir William Herbert, who played a key role as a Yorkist in the Wars of the Roses. Read more.

York Digital Image Studio Photography

Announcing a new Borders and Borderlands project: Making Bristol Medieval

We’re delighted to announce that Borders and Borderlands has won a grant of £11,173 from the Research and Enterprise Knowledge Exchange fund at the University of Bristol for the project ‘Making Bristol Medieval’.

The aim of the project is to highlight Bristol’s medieval past as a major political and commercial centre with an early interest in the potential of Atlantic trade routes. One of the major outputs of the project is a map of medieval Bristol in the year 1480, to be published in association with the Historic Towns Trust. The project runs from February to July 2020, and the PDRA is Dr Bethany Whalley. Read more.

Border Geographies in Medieval European Writing

Helen Fulton has launched a new international network, ‘Border Geographies in Medieval European Writing’, with funding from the International Strategic Fund from the University of Bristol. The funding enabled Helen to travel to the University of Sydney in June 2019 to talk to colleagues at their Medieval and Early Modern Centre (MEMC).

Helen’s main partner is Dr Jan Shaw, University of Sydney, who visited Bristol as a Benjamin Meaker Visiting Professor in April 2018.

Benjamin Meaker Visiting Professorship: Population and Cultural Movement Round the Medieval Atlantic Borderlands

We are pleased to be hosting Professor Benjamin Hudson from Pennsylvania State University at the Centre for Medieval Studies at Bristol from May-June 2019. His visit is funded by a Benjamin Meaker Visiting Professorship, sponsored by the Borders and Borderlands cluster.

Professor Hudson’s project is called ‘Population and Cultural Movement Round the Medieval Atlantic Borderlands’ and he will be delivering a graduate seminar and a public lecture titled ‘The Early History of the Atlantic Ocean: Why Bother?’, on 16 May 2019. Read more.