Public History Discussion Group: Dickens and the Workhouse

Start: May 31, 2014 11:00 AM

Location: Room 612, Institute of Archaeology

Dickens and the Workhouse

Ruth Richardson will give a talk hosted by the Public History Discussion Group at the Institute on 31 May.

Historian Ruth Richardson  - author of Dickens & the Workhouse: Oliver Twist & the London Poor and The Making of Mr. Gray’s Anatomy: Bodies, books, fortune, fame talks about her involvement in a campaign on the streets of London the research processes for which led her to a discovery that was to have a major impact on public history.

Dickens and the Workhouse

"In 2010 the Outpatients' block at the Middlesex Hospital was threatened with demolition. The main Hospital had already been reduced to a field-size area of rubble. Local people called on me to help because I had written about a Victorian doctor who had worked in the building when it had been the Strand Union Workhouse. We had 5 weeks to save the building from the bulldozers. Listing had been rejected by the Minister, and there seemed no hope.  But fiction came to the rescue, and the building is still standing. This talk will tell the story of the Workhouse and its eventual listing, and after the talk we can take a walk to see it and its setting."

 - Ruth Richardson

The Public History Group started 18 years ago at Ruskin College, Oxford initiated by the first graduates of the MA that ran at the college then. The group also acted as a base for many conferences. It is based on a broad understanding of public history embracing an inter-disciplinary approach with an emphasis on the processes of engaging with the past and a variety of outcomes. Presenters include artists, museum workers, archivists, archaeologists, film makers as well as self defined historians! This is the first of a new series working with UCL archaeologists. As always, all very welcome!

Tea/coffee & biscuits will be available from 11am. The session will start at 11.30am promptly.

Any enquiries about the event may be directed to Eleni Vomvyla.