Portrait of Professor Paul Ward (History/MHM) Professor Paul Ward (History/MHM)

p.j.ward@hud.ac.uk | 01484 478413



Paul Ward is Professor of Modern British History and Head of the Department of History, English, Languages and Media. He joined the university in 2000. He studied for his BA and PhD at Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London. He has taught at London Guildhall University, Middlesex University, the University of Westminster and Royal Holloway, University of London. He was visiting lecturer at the University of A Coruña in Spain in the spring of 2004, and Fulbright-Robertson Professor of British History at Westminster College, Missouri, 2004 to 2005.

Paul is on Twitter @profpaulward

Research and Scholarship

Paul's research is concerned with national identities in the United Kingdom since the late nineteenth century. In particular, Paul is well known for his historical study of Britishness.

He is also interested in oral history, public history and the co-production of historical knowledge, especially the ways in which communities think about their histories.

He has written four books: Red Flag and Union Jack: Englishness, Patriotism and the British Left 1881-1924, published in 1998 (re-issued in paperback in 2011); Britishness since 1870 in 2004; Unionism in the United Kingdom in 2005 (funded by a grant from the AHRB); and Huw T. Edwards: British Labour and Welsh Socialism, published in 2011 (funded by a British Academy Major Research Grant).

In 2011 Paul was involved in a European Science Foundation funded workshop on Historiography and history teaching after empire.

Paul’s current projects include:

The Beefeaters, Britishness and the British World since the 1820s: This is a project exploring representations and experiences of the Yeomen Warders at the Tower of London.

Imagine: Connecting Communities Through Research (Imagining better communities and making them happen). ESRC-AHRC funded project under the Connected Communities Civic Engagement call. This is a major project led by Dr Kate Pahl (University of Sheffield) and involving ten universities. As one of the lead CIs, I am exploring co-production of research by community groups and academics and examining how community groups use history to develop their identities, as well as providing a historical overview for the project as a whole. 2013-2017. The project website is at http://www.imaginecommunity.org.uk/

This project involves working with grassroots organisations to explore the diversity of British culture in twentieth and twenty-first century Britain. Examples of these projects and groups include:

Sound System Culture http://soundsystemculturehuddersfield.tumblr.com/

Bhangra Renaissance http://www.virsa.info/

Kirklees Local TV http://www.kirkleeslocaltv.com/

You can read more about projects in which Paul is involved at http://blogs.hud.ac.uk/subject-areas/historians-at-work/

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Ward, P (2017) ‘The Beefeaters at the Tower of London, 1826-1914: Icons of Englishness or Britishness?’. In: Four Nations Approaches to Modern 'British' History: A (Dis)United Kingdom?. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 161-188. ISBN 978-1137601414

Panesar, A., Stoddart, A., Turner, J., Ward, P. and Wells, S. (2017) ‘J.H. Whitley and the Royal Commission on Labour in India 1929–31’. In: Liberal Reform and Industrial Relations : J.H. Whitley (1866–1935), Halifax Radical and Speaker of the House of Commons. London: Routledge. pp. 129-142. ISBN 9781138293984

Pahl, K. and Ward, P. (2017) ‘Re-visioning exclusion in local communities’. In: Building Better Societies: Promoting Social Justice in a World Falling Apart. Bristol, UK: Policy Press. pp. 95-110. ISBN 978-1447332032

Ward, P. and Pente, E. (2017) ‘Let’s change history! Community histories and the co-production of historical knowledge’. In: History Making a Difference: New Approaches from Aotearoa. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 94-112. ISBN 978-1443851992


Ward, P (2016) ‘EditorialPostgraduate Perspectives on the Past , 2 (1), pp. 1-2. ISSN 2397-6918

Ward, P. and Travers, D. (2016) ‘Narrating Britain's War: A 'Four Nations and More' Approach to the People's War’. In: The Long Aftermath: Cultural Legacies of Europe at War 1936-2016. Oxford: Berghahn. pp. 77-95. ISBN 9781782381532


Pente, E., Ward, P., Brown, M. and Sahota, H. (2015) ‘The co-production of historical knowledge: implications for the history of identitiesIdentity papers: A journal of British and Irish studies , 1 (1), pp. 32-53. ISSN 2058-6205

Ward, P (2015) ‘Icons of Englishness: The Beefeaters at the Tower of London, 1826-1901’. In: De la crise à la critique : tension, évolution, révolution en Europe aux 19ème et 20ème siècles. Paris: L’Harmattan. pp. 19-44.


Ward, P (2014) ‘Postgraduate Perspectives in History: EditorialPostgraduate Perspectives in History , 1 (1), p. 1. ISSN 2055-7787

Ward, P (2014) ‘Foreword’. In: Sound System Culture: Celebrating Huddersfield's Sound Systems. London, UK: One Love Books. pp. 10-13. ISBN 9780956777348


Ward, P (2013) ‘Did you see James Mason in town today? A case study in transatlantic and local identities in British stardomJournal of Transatlantic Studies , 11 (4), pp. 403-422. ISSN 1754-1018

Ward, P (2013) ‘Last Man Picked. Do Mainstream Historians Need to Play with Sports Historians?International Journal of the History of Sport , 30 (1), pp. 6-13. ISSN 0952-3367


Ward, P (2012) ‘Beefeaters, British History and the Empire in Asia and Australasia since 1826Britain and the World , 5 (2), pp. 240-258. ISSN 2043-8575

Ward, P (2012) When the British built Adelaide, they wanted to build a better Britain Huddersfield: University of Huddersfield

Ward, P (2012) The band playing and crowds sat watching: The world of the Coal Queen- An interview with Margaret Lister. n/a (Unpublished).


McAuley, J., Ward, P., Thomas, P., Mycock, A., Matthews, J., McGlynn, C., Hayton, R. and Webster, W. (2011) ‘Academy for British and Irish Studies, 2011’. In: Academy for British and Irish Studies (relaunch), December 2011, University of Huddersfield

Ward, P (2011) ‘Editorial: North American Journal of Welsh Studies Vol. 6, 1 (Winter 2011)North American Journal of Welsh Studies , 6 (1), p. 1. ISSN 1554-8112

Ward, P (2011) ‘The last bloke picked: does the mainstream need to play?’. In: What is the Future of Sport History in Academia?: a symposium, Wednesday 29th June 2011, University of Huddersfield

Mycock, A. and Ward, P. (2011) ‘Education, identity and empire: history teaching in multi-national post-imperial Britain’. In: Teaching The Nation-State After Empire In Europe: National Historiography And History, 10-12th June 2011, University of Huddersfield, UK

Ward, P (2011) Huw T. Edwards: British Labour and Welsh Socialism . Cardiff: University of Wales press. ISBN 9780708323281


Ward, P. and Wright, M. (2010) ‘Mirrors of Wales - Life Story as National Metaphor: Case Studies of R. J. Derfel (1824-1905) and Huw T. Edwards (1892-1970)History , 95 (317), pp. 45-63. ISSN 0018-2648


Ward, P (2009) ‘The end of Britishness? A historical perspectiveBritish Politics Review , 4 (3), pp. 3-3. ISSN 1890-4505

Ward, P (2009) ‘The End of the British Empire and the Break-Up of Britain: Cause and Effect?History Teaching Review: The Yearbook of the Scottish Association of History Teachers , 23, pp. 48-53.


Ward, P (2008) ‘Call Yourself British? National Identity in the United Kingdom in the twentieth centuryCycnos , 25 (2), pp. 159-178. ISSN 0992-1893


Ward, P (2007) ‘Devolution and Britishness, 1966-1999Revue française de civilisation britannique , 14 (1). ISSN 0248-9015

Ward, P (2007) ‘Union is not Amalgamation Scotland is a Nation: Unionism and Scottishness in the Twentieth CenturyAngles on the English-Speaking World , 7, pp. 49-65. ISSN 0903-1723

Ward, P (2007) ‘'We have come a long way': the Labour Party and ethnicity in West Yorkshire’. In: Sons and daughters of labour: a history and recollection of the Labour Party within the historic boundaries of the West Riding of Yorkshire. Huddersfield: University of Huddersfield Press. pp. 157-170. ISBN 186218058X


Ward, P (2006) ‘[Various entries]’. In: The Home Front Encyclopedia: United States, Britain, and Canada in World Wars I and II. Oxford: ABC-CLIO. . ISBN 978-1-57607-849-5

Ward, P (2006) ‘Empire and Everyday: Britishness and Imperialism in Women's Lives in the Great War’. In: Rediscovering the British World. : University of Calgary Press. pp. 267-283. ISBN 1-55238-179X

Ward, P (2006) ‘Welsh and Working Class (and British too): The Case of Huw T. EdwardsNorth American Journal of Welsh Studies , 6 (2), pp. 15-26. ISSN 1554-8112

Ward, P., Hellawell, G. and Lloyd, S. (2006) ‘WITNESS SEMINAR: Anti-Fascism in 1970s HuddersfieldContemporary British History , 20 (1), p. 119. ISSN 1361-9462


Ward, P (2005) Unionism in the United Kingdom, 1918-1974 . : Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-1-4039-3827-5


Ward, P (2004) Britishness since 1870 . London, UK: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-22016-3

Ward, P (2004) ‘The Permissive Society and the Break-up of Britain’. In: About Culture. A Coruna: University of A Coruna. pp. 287-300. ISBN 8497491254


Ward, P (2003) ‘Nationalism and national identity in British politics, c. 1880s to 1914’. In: History, Nationhood and the Question of Britain. Hampshire, UK: Palgrave Macmillan. . ISBN 9781403912961


Ward, P (2002) ‘Preparing for the people's war: the left and patriotism in the 1930'sLabour History Review , 67 (2), pp. 171-185. ISSN 0961-5652

Ward, P (2002) ‘All that is solid melts into air?: Britishness in the twentieth century’. In: Aspects of Culture. A Coruña, Spain: University of A Coruña. . ISBN 8497490177


Ward, P (2001) ‘Women of Britain say go: women's patriotism in the First World WarTwentieth Century British History , 12 (1), pp. 23-45. ISSN 09552359


Ward, P (1999) ‘Socialists and "true" patriotism in Britain in the late 19th and early 20th centuriesNational identities , 1, pp. 179-194. ISSN 1460-8944


Ward, P (1998) Red Flag and Union Jack: Englishness, Patriotism and the British Left, 1881-1924 . Royal Historical Society Studies in History New Series. Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer Ltd. ISBN 9780861932399


Paul is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College.

He edits the North American Journal of Welsh Studies.

He was Fulbright-Robertson Professor of British History at Westminster College, Missouri, 2004 to 2005 and visiting lecturer at the University of A Coruña in Spain in the spring of 2004.

He is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and the Royal Historical Society.

He edits a book series for Peter Lang Publishing called ‘British Identities since 1707’.

He has examined research degrees at the University of York, Anglia Ruskin University, the University of Sheffield and the University of Ulster.

He is a member of the research network for the AHRC Coordinating Centre Everyday Lives in War: Experience and memory of the First World War, based at the University of Hertfordshire and is on the steering group of the Imperial War Museum North’s academic network.

Paul led the joint application with the University of Hull for the AHRC Block Grant Partnership Capacity Building Route, which led to the successful application of the Heritage Consortium doctoral training centre in the AHRC’s BGP2 scheme.

Paul has made a number of media appearances including, in print, in Big Issue in the North, BBC Wildlife Magazine, Daily Telegraph and English Pravda, on radio, Voice of Russia (London) and BBC Radio Leeds, and on television, for Kirklees Local TV and ITV’s Calendar.

Research Degree Supervision

Paul is happy to supervise research students in any aspect of British political and cultural history since the mid-nineteenth century. The following are suggestions rather than an exclusive list:

•           Britishness and other national and regional identities in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland

•           The co-production of historical knowledge

•           Public and oral history

•           The status of aunties in British culture

•           Patriotism

Opportunities for funding are available through The Heritage Consortium http://www2.hull.ac.uk/fass/heritage-consortium.aspx

Paul's current research students are conducting projects on the Festival of Britain (Cate Benincasa-Sharman), the location of oral history within the environment as augmented reality (Simon Bradley, AHRC-funded), a history of gender and performance in late 20th century Manchester (Jo Dyrlaga, AHRC-funded), Public History, Oral History and Regeneration: A Co-production Approach (Elizabeth Pente), A biography of Andrea Dunbar (Adelle Stripe, a Creative Writing student, jointly with Michael Stewart), Histories of People of African Descent (Milton Brown), Bussing Out in the 1960s and 1970s (Shabina Aslam) and The Gott Collection, medievalism and co-production (Nicole Harding AHRC-funded collaborative doctoral award).

Paul's successful supervisions include an MPhil on Conservatism in the 1920s, and PhDs in the history of the police, the oral history of football fandom and communities, and Mechanics Institutes in Yorkshire in the 19th century, brass bands in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (Stephen Etheridge), Yorkshire identities in the nineteenth century (William Marshall, AHRC-funded) and memories of the Second World War in the islands of the United Kingdom (Daniel Travers).

Paul’s reseach students organised the Unofficial Histories conference 2014, for which see http://unofficialhistories.wordpress.com/ and intend to run an ‘Unconference’ on history and co-production in the near future. We have also been involved in a series of workshops for PhD students on collaborative research

Enterprise Activities

Professor Ward believes that the university’s knowledge and skills should be shared with the public and he is happy to provide professional advice related to his research and teaching interests, especially to community organisations. He has worked with colleagues, students and museum professionals to deliver a permanent exhibition on local mill heritage at Brooke’s Mill, Armitage Bridge, as well as a temporary exhibition on  royal visits to Yorkshire at the Colne Valley Museum. In 2012, he compiled a report on Britishness for the office the Agent General of the Government of South Australia to encourage migration to Adelaide.

Paul is on the boards of Huddersfield Partnership and Kirklees Local TV.

Paul provides oral history training for community groups and students and is happy to provide advice and support for community history projects, including project design and management, interviewing, audio editing and exhibitions.

Paul has worked with Imperial War Museum North and Leeds City Museums to develop museum-university networks

Administrative Responsibilities

Paul is Head of the Department of History, English, Languages and Media.

Paul is a member of the Academy for British and Irish Studies, which publishes the journal Identity Papers: A Journal of British and Irish Studies: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/journal/abis/

Teaching and Professional Activities

Paul leads two training courses through Staff Development for PhD students: ‘The Literature Review’ and ‘Research Project Planning’.

He is module leader for Twentieth-Century Britain and Digital Victorians at undergraduate level.  Student work from Digital Victorians is available at http://mhm.hud.ac.uk/digitalvictorians/

He has taught at universities in Spain and the USA, as well as giving guest lectures/seminars at around 10 overseas institutions, including the Xavier University of Louisiana, University of South Alabama and the University of Copenhagen.

He received a TQEF Extra Mile Award for teaching in 2006 and was nominated in 2008, 2009 and 2011.

He won the School of Music, Humanities and Media award for most innovative module assessment, 2010