Earlier this year, something incredible happened. UCL accepted my PhD application. Granted, this news is of little interest to almost anyone outside my immediate family (and even they get bored of my chatter). Nevertheless, next month I am set to begin my research into the ‘spaces and places’ of Restoration London, and I cannot wait. There’s just one thing – like many people, I didn’t receive funding.
After a month or so of wondering what the hell I was supposed to do with a huge opportunity and a heavy shackle around my aspirations, I decided to try and crowd-fund my research instead. I set up a page with Go Fund Me in June and have been absolutely blown away by the kindness of friends and strangers. It turns out that the period that contained The Great Plague, The Great Fire, the first actresses and a ‘Merry Monarch’ is rather interesting to other people.
You can read about my research via my Go Fund Me page. Here is a brief outline:
Drawing on recent developments in spatial history, I propose to explore how the spaces and places of London were used by its inhabitants during the late seventeenth century. These spaces will include: theatres, coffeehouses, alehouses, churches, and the palaces of Westminster and Whitehall. In doing so I will cast new light on how the urban landscape influenced political culture, and how the reshaping of the capital in 1666 forced inhabitants to reassess the spaces around them.
Why am I writing this post? Unfortunately, there is still a little way to go with the funding so I thought I would abuse my position as impartial editor of The History Vault to reach out to the magazine’s subscribers. Whether it is £5, £50, £500 or £5000, all sponsorship is welcome.*
Should you wish to learn more about the Restoration, I have set up a blog that will contain regular trinkets of information and interesting stories. With the 350th anniversary of The Great Plague and The Great Fire imminent, Restoration London is ripe for revisiting and deserves to be examined through scholarly research. To sponsor, please visit my Go Fund Me page.
Thank you kindly,
*Please do not donate £5000, that would actually be far too much.