Fairly Positive

Looking to the Past

In my spare time I’ve started doing some historical research again after a (very) long sabbatical. This is possibly a mid-life crisis activity, but it is an enjoyable and intellectually stimulating one :). This has involved reading monographs and papers (on the daily commute), becoming a member of the Royal Historical Society and discovering some wonderful online resources such as Anglo-American Legal Tradition (AALT). I also attended the one-day ‘Wales and the World’ conference sponsored by The British Scholar Society and a couple of seminars organised by UWE’s Regional History Centre.

I’ve also managed to spent some time in the archives (thanks to weekend and evening opening), including visiting the Bristol Record Office and The National Archives. While going through documents I have been re-familiarising myself with sixteenth century palaeography and re-learning Latin. I had a vague idea about looking at the merchant community of sixteenth century Bristol and, while doing this, have gravitated to the Thorne family, especially Robert and Nicholas Thorne who founded Bristol Grammar School in 1532. There has been some research published (and unpublished) on members of the Thorne family, but there is room for additional work.

I’m also interested to see how the day job (software development) can facilitate historical research and dissemination. The plan is to write some posts about my growing interests.