These are challenging times and we hope everybody is keeping safe and well during the current lockdown. It is particularly difficult for the academic world and we can see the impacts of the crisis on teaching activities at the Centre for English Local History and the University of Leicester. As you know the Friends have sadly had to cancel all our planned events for this year including the Spotlight Conference and Hoskins’ Day. However, subject to government guidance, we plan to launch a full programme in the New Year to include day visits and a study weekend as well as the conference and seminars. We will aim to send out more details of how to be involved later in the year.
The current crisis has shown that despite the restrictions there is much that groups can do to keep in contact and to stay active. Some of these initiatives are already underway for the Friends such as the new website and our presence on Facebook and Twitter. This year we are also planning a new style Newsletter as a showcase of the work and interests of the Friends. An email has gone out to all members asking for articles, if you would like to contribute please let us know. We are also investigating running ‘virtual’ talks and seminars in conjunction with the Centre hopefully starting this summer, details will follow shortly. Please let use know if you have any ideas for online activities that the Friends could be involved in, we will follow-up any suggestions.
Although the threat of closure of Marc Fitch House has temporarily receded it has not gone away and we continue to work with and to support the Centre in its efforts to find suitable accommodation and to secure its future. More information on how members can help with this will be published soon.