Bid success for new First World War Centre

The £500,000 engagement centre is one of only five nationally, part of government-directed commemoration plans for the 100th anniversary of the First World War.

Universities, including Wolverhampton, will advise and co-ordinate regional commemoration activities together with museums and cultural groups.

The centres are funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) with the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

A joint bid between Wolverhampton and Birmingham University, , in which Wolverhampton’s strength in First World War studies was a major factor, proved successful. Other partner universities involved in the Centre are Newman College, Birmingham City University, and Worcester University.

Stephen Badsey, Professor of Conflict Studies at the University of Wolverhampton and a leading expert on the First World War, said: “Only last year, the only military historian on the government’s advisory panel on the commemoration, Sir Hew Strachan, called for the events of the commemoration to be an opportunity to examine the war’s real historical facts and truths, producing fresh perspectives and better understanding.

“It is our good fortune that we are part of the commemoration, and inside the experiment. Together with Professor Gary Sheffield, and Dr Spencer Jones as our point of contact for the Centre, we now have undoubtedly the strongest First World War historians' grouping in the country.”

The centre will examine the theme ‘Voices of War and Peace’, looking at areas such as regional and national impact, gender, family and the home front.

The base for the Centre will be in the Library of Birmingham, led by Dr Nicola Gauld, from the University of Birmingham. The launch will take place at the Library of Birmingham on Friday March 21.

ENDS

For more information please contact Emma Pugh in the Media Relations Office on 01902 322736.

Date issued: Tuesday 18 March 2014

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