Leading historians and academics to launch five-year project to chronicle the UK's history dating back to 1603Historians in the News
tags: British history, UK
Historians will today launch a major five-year project chronicling the history of Britain from 1603-2016, culminating in a comprehensive book that will be donated to every secondary school in the country.
Leading presenters and academics, including broadcaster Dan Snow and Stuart dynasty expert Dr Clare Jackson, have teamed up to put together an ambitious account of Britain’s rich and varied past.
It will launch today at the opening of the Chalke Valley History Festival, which is sponsored by the Daily Mail, with an introductory talk by Professor Ali Ansari of the University of St Andrews. A further seven talks will take place during the festival, which runs until June 30.
A total of 35 talks will cover everything from the reign of James I and VI, to the Swinging Sixties and the seismic shifts that pushed Britain to vote to leave the European Union in 2016.
In 2023, it will be brought together in a single-volume book, Britain: The Thread of History 1603-2016, published by Bantam Press.
A copy will be donated to every secondary school in the country.
More than 150 talks are scheduled at Chalke Valley this year, with new faces including former war broadcaster Martin Bell, best-selling crime novelist Minette Walters and comedian Harry Enfield. Festival favourites Ian Hislop, Niall Ferguson and Jacob Rees-Mogg are also returning.
Festival director Jane Pleydell-Bouverie said: ‘We are thrilled by the number of displays and activities for all the family on offer at the festival this summer [and] the diversity of topics which will be covered.’
She also praised ‘the range of speakers appearing – from the most distinguished academics and personalities to new, younger historians’.
The 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings will be marked at Chalke Valley this year and, for the first time, the festival will recreate a Second World War trench.
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