I returned to Liverpool and academic life just in time to experience the cultural phenomenon that was Liverpool 08.
In 2015 I received my PhD for a thesis entitled "The Radical Experiment in Liverpool and its Influence on the Reform Movement in the Early Victorian Period". This research followed the political actions of Reformers and Radicals in Liverpool culminating in their taking control of the town council between 1835 and 1841. It then sought to show how the leading Liverpool Radical of this period, Sir Joshua Walmsley, was influenced by these events when he led a national campaign for parliamentary reform in the late 1840s and early 1850s. Although Liverpool’s “radical experiment” and the campaign for parliamentary reform were relatively short-lived, they both achieved a measure of success and reflect well on Liverpool.
Over the past year I have been setting up a new research project (Liverpool Newspaper Heritage - see Research tab) to document Liverpool’s neglected contribution to the history of newspaper production and journalism in the UK. This is another “good news” story for Liverpool and the project was inspired by the unexpected discovery during my earlier research of just how diverse, innovative and vibrant Liverpool’s newspapers and periodicals were in the nineteenth century.