18th century clerical households, the West End and politics: a dynamic Lent term!

by Cherish Watton on 18 March 2016


Spring at LucyIt’s Friday afternoon of the last week of Lent term and I’m writing this post in Homerton Buttery, ahead of my final supervision. As with every other Cambridge term, I’m still astounded at how much can happen in the space of eight weeks.

Lent term opened with a deadline to submit a source-based piece of research that I worked on during the summer and Christmas vacations. During my holidays, I entered into the world of Parson James Woodforde, an 18th century cleric who lived in Norfolk. I became a fly on the wall of Weston Parsonage courtesy of James’ detailed and meticulous diaries. My research explored the role of his niece, Nancy Woodforde, who left one diary for the year 1792. My first independent piece of research was both intensely challenging and fascinating; I hope it will provide a more detailed picture of Nancy’s role.

At the start of term, members of the Cavendish Chorale sang a lunchtime recital, as part of the activities arranged for Women’s Week. This term our repertoire has taken a more musical theatre turn; with songs from Les Miserables, Cats and Mamma Mia. I have loved singing songs from some of my favourite musicals and performing them with a growing number of Chorale members. Our next performance is at Formal Hall on the 28 April, so be sure to keep the date free in your diaries as we transverse the musical delights of the West End!

One Show Interview with Nicky JecksThis term also hosted a number of exciting activities as a selection of high profile speakers presented at Lucy Cavendish. Rt Hon Nicky Morgan MP toured the College and shared her views on some of the pertinent issues around education and equality in Britain today. It was fascinating to hear about the challenges Baroness Tessa Jowell overcame in the realm of politics and her personal recommendations for improving women’s leadership skills. As some readers of the blog might have seen, the College also featured on ‘The One Show’, promoting the unique opportunities it provides to women from across the world.

Anyway I must dash, the final supervision of term on American popular culture beckons. The end of term will be marked in magical style this evening with the Midsummer Night’s Dream Formal Hall, which will no doubt see an array of mystical costumes. Wishing all blog readers a restful vacation and holiday period. Bye for now …

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