Historians to unveil new perspectives on Kent and Magna Carta
21 May 2015
Canterbury Christ Church University will help to launch Canterbury's Magna Carta commemorations next month with a day of talks showcasing new and ground breaking research on Kent's role during this pivotal period of history.
The Magna Carta Conference, in collaboration with Canterbury Cathedral Library and Archives, and the Canterbury Branch of the Historical Association, forms part of an exciting programme of events taking place in Canterbury in June to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta.
Taking place on the Saturday, 6 June, the conference will see a host of expert historians in medieval history, from around the country, join together to discuss Magna Carta, King John and the resulting civil wars in Kent.
Louise Wilkinson, Professor of Medieval History at Canterbury Christ Church University and Co-Director of the Magna Carta Project, explained: “Canterbury has a unique place in the 800 year old story of Magna Carta. It is on one of five Magna Carta towns associated with the granting of the charter and the Archbishop of Canterbury at the time, Stephen Langton, was the central figure and lead negotiator between the King and barons during the meetings at Runnymede in 1215. He was probably involved in drafting the Charter which, for the first time in history, placed limitations upon the king, making him subject to the law, and protected the rights of freemen to justice and fair trials. Therefore, it is highly appropriate that Canterbury is contributing so much to the anniversary commemorations for Magna Carta next month.
“Our conference will reveal a new perspective on the events of 800 years ago, which led to one of the most important charters in history, which has had substantial impact not only on the rights of people in Britain, but across the world.”
The conference forms part of an exciting programme of events taking place in Canterbury and across Kent to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, supported by Visit Kent, Canterbury City Council, The Beaney House of Art and Knowledge, Canterbury Christ Church University and Canterbury Cathedral Archives.
Events include the touring exhibition Magna Carta Rediscovered, a specially designed interactive exhibition, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. It tells the stories of kings and barons and includes the Faversham Magna Carta issued in 1300.
As well as hosting Magna Carta Rediscovered from 2 to 19 July, the Beaney will also host a summer long exhibition, Canterbury in the Age of Magna Carta. This special exhibition will feature items from the Cathedral Archives rarely seen on public display, including the priory register of c1290, which includes a copy of the Canterbury Magna Carta. It will focus on the characters that lived in the City during the age of Magna Carta.
To coincide with national celebrations, there will be a city-wide family activity day on Saturday 13 June, with activity trails and free Magna Carta tours of the city; as well as a City parade and special Evensong Service in the Cathedral.
For more information on the Magna Carta Conference or to book a place visit: www.canterbury.ac.uk/magna-carta-conference
Vosit www.canterbury.co.uk/magnacarta for more information on the City's events.
Notes to Editor
The Magna Carta Conference is part of the Kent-wide celebrations of the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, led by the Magna Carta Rediscovered summer touring exhibition of never seen before artefacts and a 1300 copy of Magna Carta. The tour will visit Canterbury, Rochester, Dover, Maidstone and Faversham from May to December 2015, and is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and is organised by Visit Kent and district partners. For more information, visit: www.magnacartarediscovered.co.uk
Canterbury Christ Church University
Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.
With almost 18,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.
- 97% of our UK graduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
- We are the number one choice for local people looking to study at university in Kent (2013 UCAS).
- We are one of the South East’s largest providers of education, training and skills leading to public service careers.
*2012/13 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey