First student recruited through Leeds Beckett University’s new Business Recovery Programme

Fran Haigh has been appointed by Shoo Social Media as Social Advertising Co-ordinator, becoming the first student to be recruited through Leeds Beckett University’s Business Recovery Programme. Fran is a third year Media Communication Cultures student who started a placement with Shoo after completing their workshop for Media Professionals’ Workshop module in second year.

She said: “I first met Shoo Social Media through the module and my passion for marketing flourished from then. I was an avid user of social media before, but I didn't realise that this was an opportunity I could develop into a career. But then, as a part of the Shoo Academy for over a year, I had so many projects and opportunities thrown my way. I'm so excited to be starting at Shoo Social Media and beginning my career in marketing and to be able to stay in the Leeds area which I'm thrilled about. I feel very lucky to have been given a work opportunity in an industry I want to pursue. I'm excited to be able to learn more and be a part of helping Shoo to grow too.” 

Lecturer writes blog piece about teaching innovation

Jessica van Horssen has written a piece for the Royal Historical Society’s blog about teaching innovation and the dynamic work that the pandemic has inspired us all to do. 

Click to read the blog piece. 

Urban History Beyond the Academy

In May 2018, Shane Ewen and Tosh Warwick organised a one-day workshop at Leeds Beckett University on 'Urban History Beyond the Academy'. This was generously supported by the School of Cultural Studies and Humanities and we are pleased to announce publication of the proceedings in a special section of Urban History, volume 48, issue 2, in May 2021.

Papers include Henry Irving's reflections on his work with Zero Waste and the War on Waste project.

Click to view the papers, including our introduction. 

Lessons from a Forgotten Disaster

Shane Ewen and Jonathan Reinarz's joint article for the Forged by Fire project, 'Lessons from a Forgotten Disaster: The Queen Victoria Street Fire, 1902', has been published Gold Open Access in London Journal. On 9 June 1902, a fire at the General Electric Company offices in Queen Victoria Street led to the deaths of ten employees, including nine young women aged between 14 and 18. 

A coroner’s inquest was immediately organized to ascertain the cause of death and a number of witnesses were called to give evidence. This article explores the evidence gathered at the inquest, focusing on the testimony of four witnesses: the spectator, employee, survivor and fireman. Their testimony exposed defects in the company’s attitude towards fire safety, London’s building bye-laws and the capital’s fire protection.

It subsequently weighs this evidence against other accounts of the fire as featured in newspapers and other contemporary texts. Our conclusions reveal significant variations between the coroner’s verdict and the media’s analysis of the fire, with particular focus given to accounts that sought to identify and hold to account those who were deemed publicly responsible for the failings to rescue the victims.


Teaching with Objects in Lockdown

Henry Irving and Jessica Van Horssen are contributing a pre-recorded session on Teaching with Objects in Lockdown for the University’s DEAP conference on teaching and learning. The session is based on experience from the level 5 History module Thatcher’s Britain and Henry’s Teaching Excellence project on Object Based Learning. For a taste of the findings, see the earlier blog.

Interdisciplinary Autism Research Festival

Dr James McGrath gave a well-received audio/visual presentation of poems from his forthcoming project autistic figurations at the Interdisciplinary Autism Research Festival, held last month at the University in Leeds.

Throughout the spring, James has also been working as part of the steering group for the ongoing project Improving Care for People with Learning Disabilities and/or Autism in Mental Health Services, via the NHS Leeds and York Partnership.


Lecturer involved in virtual discussion about the lost histories of enslaved Black women

On Thursday 10th June the gallery Block 336 hosted a virtual ‘in conversation’ event between artist Karen McLean and Emily Zobel Marshall. This event took place in conjunction with McLean’s exhibition BLUE POWER | Ar’n’t I a Woman! (20th May – 12th June 2021).

The discussion between Mclean and Marshall focused specifically on Ar’n’t I a Woman! and the 3D models of Anansi, the West African trickster spider that has become symbolic of the struggles of enslaved Africans, included in the installation. Ar’n’t I a Woman!, platforms the lost histories of enslaved Black women and speaks about their bodies as sites of oppression and resistance.

A corridor of hand-sewn hessian sacks is presented, featuring striking, graphic depictions of the uterus repeated across its surface. McLean’s work speaks about the radical as well as everyday acts of resistance.

Watch the discussion here.

Emily was also interviewed on BBC Radio Leeds and Capital FM discussing reflections on the BLM movement on the anniversary of Gorge Floyd’s murder and her ‘decolonising’ work with Harewood House.