Category Archives: Media history

Early reactions to Mussolini in Britain: The case of Kingston

The dramatic rise of Benito Mussolini to the leadership of Italy, and his destruction of liberal democracy, engendered a variety of reactions at local level in Britain in the 1920s, some of them (in hindsight) surprisingly supportive of the new … Continue reading

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Subverting the Subversives: Did MI5 infiltrate the British entertainment industry?

In 2018 some revealing new claims were put forward that the British domestic Security Service, MI5, was not just involved with monitoring and collecting intelligence on political movements and individuals deemed as potential threats to the state in the post-war … Continue reading

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Fighting Franco: Commemorating the British volunteers in the Spanish Civil War

Eighty two years ago, on 28th October, 1938, the volunteers of the ‘British Battalion’ joined the other volunteer Battalions of the International Brigades (IB) in Spain and held a poignant farewell parade, which included the transfer of their flags and … Continue reading

Posted in Archives, British history, European History, Fascism, Kingston, Local History, London history, Media history, Public History, Research, Richmond history, Surrey, The National Archives, Uncategorized, World History | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A ‘bond of mutual help’: The Comrades of the Great War organisation in Kingston and Surbiton

Christmas arrived early for some former soldiers in the suburbs of south-west London in late 1918. Just over one hundred years ago, on Christmas Day, 1918, the Surrey Comet newspaper carried a report about the opening of a new clubhouse … Continue reading

Posted in Archives, British Empire, British history, Disability History, European History, Kingston, Local History, London history, Media history, Public History, Research, Surbiton, Surrey, Teaching, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Volunteers in May: Kingston and the General Strike of 1926

Ninety-four years ago this month, in May, 1926, Britain experienced a General Strike, called by the Trades Union Congress (T.U.C), and – for a few days at least – ‘normal’ life in the country was put on hold. I have … Continue reading

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Wake Up! Invasion fears in Surrey during early World War One

By late 1914, it had become very apparent to people in Britain that the ‘great war’ would not be ‘over by Christmas’, as many had initially predicted and hoped. Moreover, as 1914 gave way to the new year of 1915, … Continue reading

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Recycling the Past? Donald Trump and his ‘America First’ creed

Here we go again. According to the London Times newspaper (April 22), President Donald Trump has resurrected ‘America First’ as a key election issue: he has sought to ‘revive a central theme of his 2016 election win’ by announcing plans … Continue reading

Posted in American history, Conspiracy theory, European History, Fascism, Media history, Public History, Research, Teaching, Uncategorized, World History | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The world-view of Nesta Webster: a case study in conspiracy theory

With the seeming surge in conspiracy theories during the current coronavirus crisis, it is important to be aware of the history of such views, and understand the claims of some of the ‘classic’ advocates of these paranoid and distorted interpretations … Continue reading

Posted in British history, Conspiracy theory, European History, French History, Gender History, German History, Media history, Public History, Research, Russian History, Uncategorized, World History | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The ‘Zeppelin’ Zapper: Horatio Bottomley in Surbiton in 1917

One Monday evening in December, 1917, Surbiton in Surrey received a visit from Mr. Horatio Bottomley, a figure the wartime Daily Mirror newspaper had called ‘London’s Answer to the Zeps’ because of his powerful oratory at public meetings. This was not the first … Continue reading

Posted in British history, Conspiracy theory, German History, Kingston, Local History, London history, Media history, Public History, Research, Surbiton, Surrey, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment