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I am currently researching Eighteenth Century Societies around the world and thought I would start with the UK (for obvious reasons!) and will add to the list as I identify more.  NB unless I specifically mention that I have experience of a society/organisation the below is just a list that I have pulled together and I in no way accept responsibility for any of the societies content on their websites/emails, or in their publications, lectures etc nor do I accept responsibility for any events held and issues arising from these.


The Georgian Grouphttp://www.georgiangroup.org.uk/docs/home/index.php
– the purpose of this organisation is shown as being:

“Britain’s architectural heritage is one of the nation’s greatest assets and the Georgian period (broadly 1700-1837) gave us some of our most beautiful buildings. The Georgian Group is the national charity dedicated to preserving Georgian buildings and gardens. Every year we are consulted on over 6,000 planning applications involving demolition or alterations. Our intervention has helped save many Georgian buildings and has protected others from harm. It is often through our influence that a better solution is found. There is a great deal to do and we need your support, so please consider joining us in 2014 as we celebrate the tercentenary of the beginning of the Georgian era.”

– they provide useful reference material, organise events and provide grants

Research (s0me of the below are only open to academics)

The British Society of Eighteenth Century Studies (BESECS)http://www.bsecs.org.uk/conference/
– the purpose of this society is:

“The British Society for Eighteenth-Century  Studies, a registered charity, was founded in 1971 to promote the study of the  eighteenth century, not only as it was experienced in Britain but throughout  the world. The Society strives to be as fully multi- and inter-disciplinary as  possible. It encourages research into, inter  alia, art history, dance history, economics, education, linguistics,  literature, medicine, music, philosophy, politics, science, sociology, sport  and theatre – indeed, into all aspects of eighteenth-century history, culture  and society.  The Society also strives to  encourage good practice and new approaches to teaching and researching the  eighteenth century.”

– members receive the quarterly Journal for Eighteenth Century Societies – in recent years this publication has provided articles about botany, The Dean of St Asaph’s Trial for Libel in the 1780s, Funeral Sermons, Jacobite Material Culture, the Wordsworths, Grub Street, Illustrating Childhood and the Comedy of National Character as well as reviews of recently published books from around the world
– as a member I am slightly bias and would recommend this organisation to any enthusiast (academic or otherwise) of the periodthe-anatomist-300px

British History in the Eighteenth Century (Institute of Historical Research, University of London) – http://www.history.ac.uk/events/seminars/107/webpage

The Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies (Queen Mary, University of London) – http://www.qmul.ac.uk/eighteenthcentury/

The Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies (University of York) – http://www.york.ac.uk/eighteenth-century-studies/

Centre for Studies in the Long Eighteenth Century (University of Kent) – https://www.kent.ac.uk/english/research/centres/18th.html

Eighteenth Century Centre (University of Warwick) – http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/history/ecc/

Eighteenth Century Study Group (University of Sheffield) – http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/c18studies

Eighteenth Century Research Group (Birbeck, University of London) – http://www.bbk.ac.uk/arts/research/eighteenth-century-research-group

Long Eighteenth Century Group (University of Northumberland) – http://www.northumbria.ac.uk/sd/academic/sass/about/humanities/englishhome/englresearch/groups/leightcent/

The North East Forum in Eighteenth-Century and Romantic Studieshttp://northeastforum.wordpress.com/contact-us/

Research Group for Eighteenth Century and Romantic Studies (University of Cambridge) – http://www.english.cam.ac.uk/research/eighteenth/

The South Coast Eighteenth-Century and Romantic Research Group (SCERRG) – http://www.scerrg.org/
– the website states that this group:

was founded in 2009 to promote academic research into all aspects of the long eighteenth century. The group aims to facilitate interdisciplinary debate and discussion between researchers and students in the region’s academic institutions. It holds and advertises a range of events, including academic seminars, conferences, postgraduate fora, and public events.

In addition, the group will develop a number of publication projects and research initiatives, drawing on the expertise of scholars of the long eighteenth century in this region and nationally. Currently Dr Fiona Price (University of Chichester) and Dr Ben Dew (University of Portsmouth) are editing a collection Visions of History with Palgrave: the collection grew from the 2010 SCERRG conference on the subject of eighteenth-century history writing and fictionality.

The Group will also encourage dialogue amongst the South Coast postgraduate community.  For more information, see the postgraduate page.

The group was launched by the University of Chichester, in partnership with Chawton House and the universities of Kent, Portsmouth, Southampton, and Winchester. It will also prove of interest to scholars, students and members of the general public who wish to advertise or attend events relating to the study of the long eighteenth century.”

Local Societies

York Georgian Societyhttp://www.yorkgeorgiansociety.org/
– the purpose of this society is:

“The York Georgian Society was founded in 1939 to promote the preservation and care of Georgian buildings in and around York, England, while fostering the study and appreciation of them. It is the second oldest society outside London devoted to the Georgian era. The Society’s remit extends beyond architecture and the crafts associated with building to include the arts, culture and society of the period from 1660, the year of George I’s birth, to 1837, the year of William IV’s death.”

– they hold monthly lectures between October and March as well as arranging visits to various locations of the summer – the titles of some of the lectures in the last few months include The Carrying Trade in England in the Long Eighteenth Century and William Kent (1685–1748): Designing Georgian Britain
– individual membership is only £18 and is well worth it


Jane Austen Society UK http://www.janeaustensoci.freeuk.com/
– the aims of the society are:

“To foster the appreciation and study of the life, work and times of Jane Austen and the Austen family

To secure the preservation of the manuscripts, letters and memorabilia of Jane Austen and the Austen family

To continue a programme of scholarly publications concerning Jane Austen and the Austen family

To support the work of the Jane Austen Memorial Trust in maintaining the Museum at Jane Austen’s House, Chawton”

– the website provides links to regional groups and provides details of events that are held throughout the year and there is a newsletter which reviews books and looks at relevant Jane Austen stories (including the forthcoming £10 note)

The Byron Society http://www.thebyronsociety.co.uk/
– the purpose of the society is:

“The Byron Society was re-founded in London on 22nd January 1971 through the energies of a number of well-known Byronists, especially Elma Dangerfield CBE. In 1973, we started the Byron Journal, which is published twice a year, and which all members receive free.

In 1974, we held our first organised international conference. Since then, we have had a conference every year, in countries such as Greece, the USA, Japan, France, Canada, Malta and Italy. All members are welcome to join us.

Today, the Byron Society holds regular lectures and social events in London, as well as occasionally elsewhere in the UK. For more details, please see Byron Society Events

The Byron Journal is printed twice a year and is free to members and costs £19 per annum to non-members.

The Keats-Shelley Memorial Societyhttp://www.keats-shelley.co.uk/
– as the website states this society is actually based in Rome but it is a British registered charity with HRH the Prince of Wales as patron
– the society has a museum dedicated to the Romantic poets which is based in the house on Casina Rossa – at the foot of the Spanish Steps – where John Keats died (see http://www.keats-shelley-house.org/)
– you can become a friend of the Society for £20:

“Join the Friends and you will:

  • Enjoy FREE entry to the Museum in Rome and help preserve it for future generations
  • Receive a twice yearly newsletter by email or post with details of KSMA  activities and news from Rome
  • Find out about events in UK or Rome including lectures, poetry meetings, outings and sponsored events at literary festivals
  • Receive a FREE copy of the Keats-Shelley Review in Spring and Autumn
  • Receive an invitation to the Keats-Shelley Prize Presentation in London in October each year.

Friends are also invited to send details of events associated with the Romantics that may be of interest to other members for possible inclusion in the Newsletter.”

The Wellington Society of Madridhttp://www.wellsoc.org/SocietyPages.htm
– the website states:

“The Wellington Society was founded by Stephen Drake-Jones in 1979. It is dedicated to research, education and other cultural activities concerning the Peninsular Campaign of  Arthur Wellesely, Duke of Wellington. ”

Re-enactment Groups

The Bath Eighteenth Century Ballhttp://www.bathminuetcompany.co.uk/18th_Century_Ball.html
– an annual event which is held in the Guildhall (hosted by the Bath Minuet Company) NB the next event is on the 5th April (tickets are still available)

Lace Warshttp://www.lacewars.co.uk/
– the purpose of this group is stated as:

“Lace Wars is made up of a number of regiments  depicting both military and civilian life during the 18th Century.

Specialising in the period 1740-1760 and in particular the  Jacobite rebellion, we stage events throughout the year at historic sites in the UK  and Europe.

Clients  include Historic Scotland, English Heritage and the National Trust, as well as  local museums and private houses such as Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings  and Rockingham Castle.

Events can vary from mock battles with cavalry  and artillery to small regimental living history camps; we have also been known  to dabble with, smugglers and other ne’er-do-wells!”

Pulteney’s Regiment (13th Foot)http://freespace.virgin.net/gerald.hughes/indexa.htm
– part of the Lace Wars group the purpose is:

“We are a UK based group re-enacting the period from 1739 to 1765 but specializing in the dates 1742-48. We aim to recreate as authentically as possible a unit of soldiers, and their dependants in King George II’s service and in so doing both entertain and educate the public.

Since being formed in 1994 we have taken part in events across the country and have been featured in a BBC documentary about the Bayonet. We have performed drill displays for the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst and contributed to events for English Heritage, such as History in Action (The largest multi-period historical festival in the world).”