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'Footsteps of King Arthur'

A full day, with experts covering aspects of King Arthur, including literature, history, archaeology, heritage interpretation and Geoffrey Ashe, MBE.

‘Footsteps of King Arthur’ on 19th April 2013

Chaired by Professor Roberta Gilchrist
(University of Reading and Glastonbury Abbey Trustee)

09:30 - 10.30 Registration and coffee

10.30 – 10.35 Welcome

10.35 – 10.45 Introduction

10.45 – 11.15 Professor Elizabeth Archibald (Durham University)
‘King Arthur through Modern Eyes’

Elizabeth Archibald is Professor of English at Durham University and Principal of St Cuthbert's Society, one of the Durham residential colleges. Her interest in Arthur began when she was an undergraduate at Cambridge. After completing a PhD in Medieval Studies at Yale, she taught at King's College Cambridge, the University of Victoria (British Columbia), and Bristol before moving to Durham in 2012. Her publications include 'A Companion to Malory' (1996, co-edited with A.S.G. Edwards), 'Incest and the Medieval Imagination' (2001), and 'The Cambridge Companion to the Arthurian Legend' (2009, co-edited with Ad Putter). She is currently working on a study of baths and bathing in medieval literature and society.
Elizabeth is the President of the British Branch of the International Arthurian Society.

11.15 – 11.45 Dr Cheryl Green (University of Reading)
‘Antiquarian Excavations and the legacy of Arthur’
Since graduating in 1995 from the University of Reading (1992-1995) Cheryl has enjoyed a varied career in archaeology, working both within the commercial and academic sectors. Her interest in historic buildings and ecclesiastical archaeology developed during her PhD research on the use of Quarr stone in relation to the Roman, Anglo-Saxon and medieval stone building industries of Southern England. In 2007 the opportunity arose to become Research Assistant for a pilot project led by Professor Roberta Gilchrist, University of Reading, assessing the archives from the 1908 – 1979 excavations at Glastonbury Abbey. This informed a major four-year research project culminating in a Monograph (forthcoming Gilchrist and Green 2014) publishing exciting new evidence resulting from the re-analysis of the historic excavations, extensive new geophysical survey and specialist assessments of the finds assemblages. Cheryl has now returned to Context One Archaeological Services, Somerset, as post-excavation manager and buildings archaeologist.

11.45 – 12.30 Break

12.30 – 1.00 Johnny McFadyen (PhD Student, University of Bristol)
‘Arthur in the Medieval West’

“I'm just finishing my PhD on Latin Arthurian literature at the University of Bristol (and may even be done by the time the event comes round fingers crossed). My research interests are primarily to do with the socio-politcal and ideological utility of the Arthurian Legend, Medieval Romance and Latin Arthurian Historiography.”

1.00 – 1.30 An audience with Geoffrey Ashe M.B.E.
Question and answer session

Geoffrey Ashe is the author of 26 books. Most of these are on British history and legend, especially the traditions of Arthur. A special interest in Glastonbury is reflected in King Arthur's Avalon (1957) and its fiftieth anniversary edition. He was co-founder and secretary of the Camelot Research Committee which, under the presidency of Sir Mortimer Wheeler, conducted the excavation of the South Cadbury hill-fort.
Ashe has held visiting professorships at several universities in the US, and appeared in TV documentaries. His re-interpretation of Arthurian origins was published by the Medieval Academcy of America, and developed in The Discovery of King Arthur. Books on other themes include Gandhi and The Offbeat Radicals.
In 2012 he was awarded an MBE for Services to Heritage.

1.30 – 2.30 Buffet Lunch

2.30 – 3.00 Professor Ad Putter (University of Bristol)
‘Medieval Arthurian literature on British soil.’

Ad Putter is Professor of Medieval English at the University of Bristol. He
is the General Editor of Arthurian Literature in the Middle Ages, and has
published widely in the area of medieval literature. His books include Sir
Gawain and the Green Knight and French Arthurian Romance (1995), An
Introduction to the Gawain Poet (1996), and (with Judith Jefferson and Myra
Stokes), Studies in the Metre of Alliterative Verse (2007).

3.00 – 3.30 Rhianedd Smith (University of Reading)
“We don’t want Disney”

Rhianedd Smith BA (Hons), MPhil, AMA, PGCAP is the Museum Studies Programme Director at the University of Reading. Rhi has recently completed an AHRC funded doctoral research project examining the interpretation of Glastonbury Abbey's legends and archaeology. Prior to this Rhi worked in the Museum of English Rural Life, the Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology and the Pitt Rivers Museum. Her research focuses on intangible cultural heritage and community engagement with English collections and historic sites.

3.30 – 4.00 Break

4.00 – 4.30 Professor Ronald Hutton (University of Bristol)
‘The Historical Arthur’

Ronald Hutton is Professor of History at Bristol University, and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, Society of Antiquaries and Learned Society of Wales. He has published fourteen books on different aspects of history and prehistory, mostly with reference to Britain.

4.30 – 5.00 Discussion & Questions to the panel from delegates

5.00 – 5.15 Summary

5.15 – 5.30 Closing


Professor Elizabeth Archibald | talks
Johnny McFadyen | talks
Geoffrey Ashe, M.B.E, | talks
Professor Ad Putter | talks
Rhianedd Smith | talks
Professor Ronald Hutton | talks | www
Dr Cheryl Green | talks


Date and Time:

19 April 2013 at 9:30 am


Full Day



Glastonbury Town Hall
Magdalene Street
01458 832267
Show map

Organised by:

Glastonbury Abbey
See other talks organised by Glastonbury Abbey...



£20. Concessions £18

Available from:

or 01458 831631
or in person from Glastonbury Abbey Shop

Additional Information:

Refreshments, buffet lunch and admission to Glastonbury Abbey included.
Concessions apply to Abbey Full and Social Members, Students with N.U.S card and over 60's.

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