English, History and Creative Writing


The Department of English, History & Creative Writing has a distinct and thriving research culture. The department made two submissions to the Research Excellence Framework (2014) – History (D30), and English Language and Literature (D29), which includes the research of our language and literature teams, as well as the original work produced by our creative writing team.

In 2014, over 57% of the publications submitted by the English team were judged to be either world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*).

Research groups and centres

Furness Abbey

Monastic Lancashire

Lancashire contains an interesting variety of monastic foundations (independent houses, cells and alien priories) and orders (Augustinian, Benedictine, Cistercian, Dominican, Franciscan, and Premonstratensian) founded between the 11th and 14th Centuries. Subsequently some of its abbots played a prominent role in the 16th Century dissolution.

The Monastic Lancashire research group brings together researchers from different disciplines (Business School, Education, English and History) to develop interdisciplinary research into Monastic Lancashire in terms of both spirituality and the management of temporalities and relations with the wider community, both within the county palatine and nationally. Key objectives of the group include the identification, transcription, translation and analysis of previously unpublished primary sources, and the promulgation of this research to the wider community including local history societies and schools with the aim of regenerating popular consciousness of Lancashire’s monastic past and heritage.

Someone standing looking at Machu Pichu mountain

Spanish and Latin American studies research group (ESAL)

The research group in Spanish and Latin American Studies (ESAL) gathers researchers and postgraduates who investigate any area of Hispanic studies and would like to present, give a lecture/seminar, get feedback on their research topic, and to network among fellow colleagues.

We organises hybrid events, in person and online through MS Teams, to reach the global audience.

ESAL was successfully launched in October 2021. At the inaugural event supported by the Institute for Social Responsibility (ISR), we welcomed special guest the Paraguayan Ambassador Genaro V. Pappalardo, who brought us closer to Paraguay. Dr Joaquín Cortés who talked about colonialism in Latin America. And Professor Anthony Grant who shared with us his knowledge about Miskitu, the language of the largest indigenous group in Nicaragua.

ESAL events are free to attend and open to all staff, students and members of the public.

"Writing the Self" - an opened book

Narrative research group

The NRG is a regular forum at which staff, research students, postgraduate alumnae and other published writers linked to Edge Hill University share prose fiction in progress.

We occasionally host guest speakers and participate in public readings, for instance at the ‘The Child of the Century’: Reading and Writing Short Fiction Across Media conference of the European Network for Short Fiction Research (ENSFR). We have also been very closely involved in shortlisting and judging for the  Edge Hill Prize for the Short Story. Individual members contribute to the peer-reviewed journal, Short Fiction in Theory and Practice as board members, book reviewers and contributors.

Mutual support and intensive feedback for work in progress has been crucial for our own creative process, and a great deal of published and prize-winning fiction has first seen the light of day in our meetings, for instance Carys Bray’s A Song for Issy Bradley and Mere by Carol Fenlon.   Stories from four members of the group have appeared in the annual Best British Short Stories series published by Salt.