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London and the First World War

March 20, 2015 - March 21, 2015
CMH, Institute of Historical Research (University of London) and Imperial War Museums

Senate House and IWM London
United Kingdom

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As part of events to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, IWM (Imperial War Museums) in partnership with the Centre for Metropolitan History is organising a major conference that will explore the ways in which London and its inhabitants were affected by, and involved with, the 1914-18 conflict. For the first time London was effectively on the front line, subject to aerial bombing and surveillance, whilst its streets, buildings and spaces were shaped by the needs of mass mobilisation, supply and defence. The war had an impact upon everyday life in the capital in other ways too, including the economy, governance, standards of living, culture, leisure, the physical environment and social life.

The conference will be held at Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU on 20 March 2015 and at IWM London, Lambeth Road, London SE1 6HZ on 21 March 2015.

Contact: Olwen Myhill (E:; T: +44 (0)20 7862 8790)

PROGRAMME (A pdf version is available for download below)

Friday 20 March 2015 (at Institute of Historical Research, Senate House, London WC1E)

09:30  Registration 

09:50  Welcome: Lawrence Goldman (Director of the Institute of
          Historical Research)

10:00  Plenary Lecture: Adrian Gregory (Pembroke College, Oxford),
          London: a wartime metropolis in comparative perspective

11:00  Refreshments

11:25  Session 1: Daily life and institutions
          Peter Hounsell (Independent scholar), The war on waste:
          the national salvage campaign and the London boroughs 

          Haia Shpayer-Makov (University of Haifa, Israel), How the
          First World War changed the nature and structure of policing in

          James Wearn (Kew Gardens), Plants, people and the products
             of war: Kew Gardens 1914–18 

12:55  Lunch

13:40  Session 2: Enemy aliens
         Rudolf Muhs (Royal Holloway, University of London), 'Mother,
          shall we have to kill Fräulein?' The disappearance of the
          governess from London         

          Tony Lentin (Wolfson College, Cambridge), Martyrdom of a 
          Metropolitan Maecenas: the rise and fall of Sir Edgar Speyer

          Anna Sutherland (Independent scholar), The Lusitania riots in
          London 1915

          Katrin FitzHerbert (Independent scholar), Fighting 'the Hun' 
          on the Home Front. A case study of internment and repatriation 

15:10  Refreshments

15:35  Session 3: Communications and transport
          Simon Abernethy (Cambridge), London, public transport, and
          the First World War

          Richard Dennis (University College London), The dilemmas of
          a London railway in wartime: the Metropolitan Railway, 1914–18

          Krisztina Robert (Roehampton), Between Home and Front during
          the First World War: women war workers in the streets and
stations of London 

17:05  Break

17:15  Session 4: Empire view
          Elise Edmonds (State Library NSW Sydney, Australia), Visiting
          Mother – London through the eyes of Australian visitors

          Anna Maguire (IWM and King’s College London), Looking for
New Zealanders in London during the First World War

          John Siblon (Birkbeck, University of London), Negotiating
and memory: African and Caribbean colonial troops
          in London’s
Imperial spaces

18:45  Conference Reception in IHR Common Room

Saturday 21 March 2015 (at IWM London, Lambeth Road, London SE1)

09:00  Registration. First World War gallery open for viewing

09:50  Welcome: Suzanne Bardgett (Head of Research, IWM)

09:55  Session 5: Dissent
          Richard Espley (Senate House Library), Caroline Playne in
          wartime London

          Linda Parker (Independent scholar), Recruitment, relief and 
          reform. The impact of the First World War on the Anglican 
          Church in London

          Sarah Jackson (Independent scholar), East London Federation
          of Suffragettes during the First World War 

11:25  Refreshments

11:50  Session 6: Air war
          Roderick Bailey (Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine,
          Oxford), The men who bombed London: British interrogation 
          of captured Zeppelin aircrew. 

          Nina Hadaway (RAF Museum), London and the aircraft
          manufacturing industry

          Ross Mahoney (RAF Museum), London and curating the 'First
          World War in the Air’

13:20  Lunch

14:05  Session 7: Leisure
          Ruth Percy (Ruskin College, Oxford), Memory, work, and leisure
          in London during the First World War

          Assaf Mond (Tel-Aviv University, Israel), Chelsea FC and its urban
          fight against calls to abandon professional football in England
the First World War

          Rachel Richardson (Independent scholar), 'Everyone is
          at o
nce in Leicester Square': importing London to the Front 

15:35  Refreshments

16:00  Plenary Lecture: Jerry White (Birkbeck, University of London)
           London in the First World War: questions of legacy

17:00  Conference ends. First World War gallery open for viewing


Fees (include refreshments, lunch and, on 20 March, a drinks reception):

Two-day full rate: £95     Concessions (student, unwaged, retired): £65

Single day (either 20 March or 21 March):
Full: £50   Concessions: £35

To register securely online with a credit/debit card:
click on the 'External Site' link under REGISTRATION on this page (this will take you to the University of London online shop)

To pay by cheque, please download and complete the booking form below.

Programme (pdf file)

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March 16, 2015, 12:00pm BST

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#London events, #World War I

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