PTUC welcomes the BCMH New Researchers in Maritime History Conference next week!

New Researchers in Maritime History Conference at the University of Portsmouth 31 March – 1 April 2023

The British Commission for Maritime History (BCMH), in association with Port Towns and Urban Cultures Research Group, University of Portsmouth, is delighted to invite you to the twenty-eighth conference for new researchers. This annual conference organised by BCMH is supported by the Society for Nautical Research.

BCMH Chair, and Port Towns and Urban Cultures member, Dr Cathryn Pearce has stated how proud she is that the New Researchers Conference is being hosted at the University of Portsmouth this year. She added,

PTUC will feature strongly, with Professor Brad Beaven as the Keynote, PTUC PhD students Daisy Turnbull and Corey Watson, and MA Naval History alumni, David Kneale and Geoff Cunnington. I’m also pleased that we will have a coastal history strand for the first time.


Follow this link to register your place >> New Researchers in Maritime History Conference | PORTSMOUTH Online Store

Full Registration £35  / Student Rate £30  / Speakers, Keynote & Prize winners £0


Friday 31 March 2023

From 14:00 there will be opportunities for delegates to join guided tours of the Mary Rose Museum. Meet at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard’s Victory Gate (on the corner of Queen Street and the Hard, just a few minutes’ walk from Portsmouth Harbour station).

17:00 – 17:45: Registration (Portland Building atrium, Portland Street, University of Portsmouth PO1 3AH)

17:45: Welcome, Dr Cathryn Pearce, Chair, British Commission for Maritime History

18.00: Keynote Lecture: Professor Brad Beaven (University of Portsmouth),

‘The Devil’s Highway: Victorian Anxieties and Sailortown Cultures in London, c. 1850-1900’

19.45: Conference Dinner at the Old Customs House pub, Gunwharf Quays, Vernon Building, PO1 3TY

Saturday 1 April 2023

8:30 – 9:15: Registration

9:15: Conference Coordinator’s Welcome, Dr James Davey

9:30 – 10:45 Session One: COASTS

David Kneale (Independent scholar), ‘Resistance, persuasion and the social contracts of impressment in the Isle of Man 1750-1815’.

Tuba Azeem (Victoria University of Wellington), ‘Land Came First, Then Sea: Customary Practice and Dispossession in Gwadar’ [VIRTUAL PRESENTATION].

Daisy Turnbull (University of Portsmouth/Hogskolan i Halmstad), ‘The Right to Wreck in the Decline of the Cinque Ports; Admiralty Court and the enforcement of royal privilege on the coast of Kent and Sussex in the early to mid-19th century’.

10.45-11.15 Coffee

11.15 -12.30 Session Two: GENDER AND THE SEA

Lisa Wojahn (University of Exeter), ‘Married and Alone: The Unusual Lives of Women Who Married Royal Navy Officers in the Nineteenth Century’.

Julia Connell Stryker (University of Texas at Austin), ‘All-Sufficient, Overly Republican, Excessively Dignified and Serene: Lady Passengers, Working Women, and the Professionalization of Women’s Work at Sea’.

Sarah Louise Miller (University of Oxford), ‘Beneath the Surface: Women in British WWII Naval Intelligence’.

12.30-13:30 Lunch

13:30 Presentation of awards

13:45 to 14.45 Session Three: MARITIME KNOWLEDGE

Sara Ayres (Independent scholar), ‘Prince George of Denmark’s Grand Tour in England and Chatham Dockyards, 1669’.

Graham Kerr (University of Reading), ‘Britannia, Rule the Waves! Britons never will be slaves: Enslaved People in the Establishment of the Royal Navy’s Military Industrial Complex in Eighteenth Century Jamaica’.

Corey Watson (University of Portsmouth), ‘“Officers of the Society”: Lloyd’s Register Surveyors in China and Transnational Maritime Networks, 1869-1918’.

14.45 to 15.15 Tea


Brooke Grasberger (Brown University), Sundays at Sea: the Sacred and the Oceanic in the 19th Century’.

Edmund Wuyts (Ghent University), ‘“old Harvey (a mulatto)”: Sailors of Colour on British Arctic Expeditions (1848-1860)’.

Geoff Cunnington (University of Portsmouth), ‘Grand Fleet Lives: picturing Royal Navy sailors’ postcards in the First World War’.

16.30: Closing remarks


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