In order of appearance
Alannah Tomkins is a Professor of Social History at Keele University in Staffordshire. She is a historian of poverty, medicine and nursing: she hopes that her book Nursing the English from Plague to Peterloo, 1660-1820 will be published by Manchester University Press in 2024.
X (Twitter): @AlannahTomkins
Dr Amanda Gwinnup completed her PhD in 2023 from the University of Huddersfield and is currently exploring employment opportunities. She is a historian of military nursing and work-related disability and examines nursing identity and the agency of sick and injured nurses. Amanda is a UKAHN committee member handling communication and web editing. She is in the process of writing her first book and hopes to have it published by the close of 2024.
X (Twitter): @WW1NurseHist
Dr Irene Ilott was an occupational therapist for 40 years, working in practice, education, policy and research in the UK and Europe.
In retirement she is supporting ‘Occupational Therapy History Matters’, an anonymous collective which promotes the importance of occupational therapy histories across the world. The group is active on X (formerly Twitter) @HistoryOt and Wikipedia. Most recently, they expanded the biography of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susan_E._Tracy an American registered nurse who developed invalid occupations as a branch of nursing at the start of the twentieth century.
Prof Judi Pettigrew is Professor of Occupational Therapy, School of Allied Health and Health Research Institute, University of Limerick. She has academic backgrounds in social anthropology, occupational therapy and history. Her enduring research interests are on the impact of violence on people’s everyday lives including the structural violence of life in 20th Century Irish mental hospitals; the direct violence of war, for example, on civilians and combatants in Nepal’s civil war (1996-2006) or First World War occupational therapists in France in 1918/1919. Judi’s current research on the use of work/occupation in early twentieth century Irish mental hospitals through to the professionalisation of occupational therapy in the mid twentieth century explores how practice evolves in response to social, institutional and healthcare contexts.
Gwawr Faulconbridge is the vice chair and a founder member of the Whitchurch Hospital Historical Society (@WhitchurchHosp on X, web: www.whitchurchhospital.co.uk)
She worked as a mental health pharmacist at Whitchurch hospital in Cardiff for 20 years beginning in the mid 1990s.
Gwawr has a passion for researching and sharing the fascinating and varied history of what was a cutting edge mental health hospital – one that witnessed two world wars and pioneered the modern advances in psychiatry forming the basis of modern practices in use today.
Erin Spinney is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History & Politics at the University of New Brunswick in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. Her research primarily focuses on late-eighteenth and early-nineteenth century British military and naval systems of medical care, with a focus on nurses, and other women labourers in such systems. Her recent article ‘Women’s Work: Nurses, Orderlies, and the Gendered Division of Care in Revolutionary and Napoleonic Era British Army Hospitals,’ published in Nursing History Review (2023) won the American Association for the History of Nursing’s Mary Adelaide Nutting Award.
X (Twitter): @ErinSpinney
Rosemary Collins is an independent researcher. For further details, see
Dr Janet Hargreaves is a retired Professor of Professional Education from the University of Huddersfield. She has a longstanding interest in Nursing History, researching nurse education in the mid-twentieth century for her Dr of Education thesis, gained from the University of Huddersfield in 2006 entitled: The good nurse; discourse and power in nursing and nurse education (1945 -1955). This research led to involvement with the UKAHN committee, and more recently membership of the RCN History of Nursing Forum committee. Publications have included an oral history project with Médecins Sans Frontiers about nurses and nurses involvement in the republican Easter Rising in Ireland, 1916. Her current research interests are the life of Molly Murphy, a twentieth century nurse, suffragette and socialist, and the history of health and health care in the small coastal resort to which she has retired. email: email@example.com
Stuart Wildman is an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham. His research focuses on the history of health care, in particular hospital and home nursing, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He is currently Chair of the History of Nursing forum of the Royal College of Nursing.
Dr Gavin Wilk is an historian based in Ireland whose research interests range from American and Irish history to social, cultural, transnational, nursing, immigration, and political studies. He was awarded a PhD from the University of Limerick and was an Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences Postgraduate Scholar. He also holds an MA in International Studies from the University of Limerick and a BA in History from Villanova University. He is the author of Transatlantic Defiance: The Militant Irish Republican Movement in America, 1923–45 (Manchester University Press, 2014), a book derived from extensive archival research in Ireland, the United States and Britain that presents a cross-cultural introspection of Irish republicanism and specifically examines the emigration patterns of Irish Republican Army (IRA) veterans, their individual lives in American communities, and their local and national republican activism.
A member of the National Coalition of Independent Scholars as well as the Military Welfare History Network, he has presented at conferences throughout the US and Europe and recently appeared in the Irish RTÉ Radio Documentary On One ‘Miss Folan’s Last Wish’ . His work has been published in the Journal of Transnational American Studies, New Hibernia Review and Crime, Law & Social Change, and also in various reference encyclopaedias including Postwar America: An Encyclopedia of Social, Political, Cultural, and Economic History (Routledge, 2007); America in World History (Sharpe Reference, 2010) and Conspiracies and Conspiracy Theories in American History (ABC-CLIO, 2019).
X (Twitter): @gavinwilk15
National Coalition of Independent Scholars Profile: https://www.ncis.org/members/gavin-wilk
Reports on events
Dr Antonia Harland-Lang is the Events and Exhibitions Co-ordinator at the Royal College of Nursing Library and Archive Service. During her career, she has led on more than forty exhibitions at institutions including the Royal Horticultural Society, Brent Museum and Archives, and the Museum of Oxford. She is passionate about widening access to heritage through co-curation and partnership working. She completed a PhD exploring the work of William Makepeace Thackery and nineteenth century ideas of Bohemianism at the University of Cambridge in 2010.
To find out more about the RCN Library and Archive’s programme of exhibitions and events, please visit: Exhibitions and Events | Royal College of Nursing (rcn.org.uk)