Events & Engagement
Public and community engagement has been at the heart of ISWE’s approach from the very beginning. This concerted interaction is informed by our conviction that as a research centre based in Wales, the people and communities of Wales should be invited to actively partake in and benefit from our work and activities.
We are committed to embedding opportunities for sharing our research and encouraging active public participation. The research that we produce has many applications and audiences beyond the realm of academia. We are working with partners in the cultural heritage, historic environment, archives, rural affairs and tourism sectors to unlock some of these potentials. We also recognise that there are important local and place-specific dimensions to our work. This often meshes with a significant public interest in family, local and Welsh history, and a desire by people to understand the heritage of their homes and communities. We recognise the substantial repositories of knowledge and expertise, related to our interests, which reside within local communities. This has underpinned our efforts to develop strong relationships with historical societies and heritage groups, who play an integral role in researching, sharing and promoting knowledge about Wales’ past.
Through our projects, partnerships, events and social media we delighted to have attracted a large body of public supporters and followers from across Wales and beyond. Many of these individuals support our work as Friends of ISWE.
Research Seminar Series
From our inception we have run a programme of evening research seminars at Bangor University, providing a platform for academics and heritage professionals to present on themes and subjects relating to our interests. Topics have ranged from slate quarrying and medieval genealogy to family silver and estate management. We especially enjoy opportunities for showcasing the innovative research of early-career academics. The seminars have proved to be extremely popular and are always well attended, often drawing new people to Bangor University for the first time.
ISWE also regularly co-hosts the Bangor University Archives and Special Collections Annual Lecture.
We take our role as a national research centre for all of Wales very seriously. Every year we hold a conference or symposium in a different region of Wales, focusing on the local influence and significance of country houses and estates. These events are often held in partnership with a county historical society and are regularly hosted at a country house venue. Past events include:
- 2020 – The landed estate in south west Wales
(Hosted by the Carmarthenshire Antiquarian Society at Trinity Saint David Campus, Carmarthenshire)
- 2019 – ‘Rich in the remains of former ages’
(Hosted at Gregynog Hall, Montgomeryshire, in collaboration with the Powysland Club)
- 2018 – ‘Spheres of Influence’: The impacts of estates on the history, culture and landscapes of Anglesey
(Hosted at Plas Cadnant, in collaboration with the Anglesey Antiquarian Society and Gwynedd Archaeological Trust)
- 2017 – ‘Justice and Joy’: Breconshire estates from the perspectives of landlord and tenant
(Hosted at Penpont, in collaboration with the Brecknock Society)
- 2017 – Mansions and their estates in Ceredigion
(Hosted by the Ceredigion Local History Forum at Llwyncelyn, Cardiganshire)
- 2016 – Reconsidering the gentry of north east Wales
(Hosted at Mostyn Hall, Flintshire, in collaboration with Flintshire Historical Society and the North East Wales Heritage Forum)
- 2015 – ‘The South Wales Squires’
(Hosted at the National Botanic Garden of Wales, in collaboration with the Carmarthenshire Antiquarian Society)
- 2014 – ‘Bonheddwyr Mawr o’r Bala’: A day school on landed estates in Penllyn
(Hosted at Glanllyn, Merionethshire)
- 2019 – Elizabeth Morgan of Henblas (Storiel Museum, Bangor)
- 2018–19 – Tu Hwnt i’r Chwarel | Beyond the Quarry (Bangor University and Bethesda Library)
- 2018 – The Mostyn Manuscripts | #Mostyn100 (National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth)
Conferences and Symposia
In addition to our annual conference, we have regularly partnered with other organisations to host other public symposia and events. These include:
- 2019 – Reading, Writing, and Collecting: Books and Manuscripts in Wales, 1450–1850
(Hosted at Brecon Cathedral)
- 2019 – Book launch: J. Gwilym Owen and Peter Foden, The Penrhyn Entail
(Hosted at Bangor University)
- 2018 – Patriarchal Paradigms? The roles and experiences of women on the landed estates of Wales
(Hosted at the National Botanic Garden of Wales in collaboration with Women’s Archive Wales)
- 2018 – The Mostyn Manuscripts Symposium
(Hosted at the National Library of Wales)
- 2018 – Woodland Management in Wales: Past, Present, Future; Heritage, Management and Sustainability
(Hosted at Bangor University, in collaboration with the Bangor Forestry Students Association and Woodland Heritage)
- 2018 – Events and activities associated with Prosiect Penrhyn: Tu Hwnt i’r Chwarel | Beyond the Quarry
(Hosted at venues and sites across Dyffryn Ogwen)
- 2017 – ‘Measuring the Meadows’ – Carto Cymru 2017: The Wales Map Symposium
(Hosted at the National Library of Wales, in collaboration with RCAHMW)
- 2017 – Book launch: Bettina Harden, The Most Glorious Prospect.
(Hosted at Plas Glyn-y-Weddw)
- 2017 – Peter Lord: Portreadu Pobl Môn
(Hosted at Eisteddfod Genedlaethol Ynys Môn, in collaboration with Anglesey Antiquarian Society and Gwynedd Archaeological Trust)
- 2016 – Book launch: Philip Nanney Williams, Nannau: A Rich Tapestry of Welsh History
(Hosted at Corsygedol Hall)