BARS Exec 2017-19

The BARS Executive, 2017-19

BARS is administered by an Executive Committee whose roles are described in the Association’s Constitution.  This executive was elected at the 2017 conference in York and served until the 2019 conference in Nottingham.  Members of the Executive can be contacted by email using the links in the names below.


President: Ian Haywood (University of Roehampton)

Ian was elected President in 2015 and before that served for four years as Vice-President.  In the last two years, he has overseen and supported the introduction of numerous new initiatives such as the Wordsworth Trust Fellowship, the foundation of European Romanticisms in Association (ERA), the Nineteenth-Century Matters Fellowship, and the Scottish Romanticism Research Award, as well as expanding many of BARS’ current activities.  Ian believes in an inclusive Executive where each member is encouraged (backed by resources) to develop their area of responsibility.  Future plans may include a new Public Engagement Fellowship and a supernumerary conference with NASSR.

Vice President: Anthony Mandal (Cardiff University)

After serving as a co-opted member of the Executive since 2013, Anthony Mandal was elected in 2015 as Vice-President of BARS.  Since his election, he has contributed to ongoing and new initiatives that promote BARS and expand its reach.  As Vice-President, he has sat on the award committee of the second BARS First Book Prize; reviewed applications for the BARS and Marilyn Butler Fellowships at Chawton House Library; arranged the preparation of the BARS postcards; and developed BARS funding awards with the Executive.  During 2017–18, he will be hosting and mentoring the second BARS/BAVS Nineteenth-Century Matters Fellow at Cardiff University.

Treasurer and Membership Secretary: Jane Moore (Cardiff University)

Jane has been the BARS Treasurer since 2013, and has been responsible for refining the financial reporting of the Association, managing its day-to-day finances, and for regularising BARS membership records.  She was co-organiser of Cardiff 2015.

Secretary: Jennifer Orr (Newcastle University)

Past President: Nicola J. Watson (Open University)

Nicola was BARS President from 2011 to 2015, during which time she placed the association on a sound financial footing, instituted the BARS First Book Prize, and generally made BARS more outward-looking and expansive.  Since 2013, her major initiative has been the founding of European Romanticisms in Association (ERA), in which BARS plays a leading role.

Ordinary Members

Editor of The BARS Review: Mark Sandy (Durham University)

Currently Professor in English at Durham, Mark brings his wide experience of Romantic Studies to bear on The BARS Review.

Bursaries Officer: Daniel Cook (University of Dundee)

Daniel has served on the Executive for several years; he manages most of the BARS bursary schemes, including the Copley Awards and the Scottish Romanticism Research Award.  With Matt Sangster and Anna Mercer, he fronts our Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Website Editor: Matthew Sangster (University of Glasgow)

Matthew Sangster has been on the Executive since 2009 in a number of roles.  His initiatives as Website Editor include the creation of the Blog and the Exchange, the ‘Five Questions’ interview series with academics about recent books and research projects and the continuing development of the site.  Matt is also technical editor of The BARS Review, having overseen the transition to the new online format.

Early Career Representative: Honor Rieley (University of Glasgow)

Honor was the organiser of the successful Early Career and Postgraduate Conference in Oxford in 2016 and was formerly the postgraduate representative.  She currently represents the interests of early career scholars at Executive meetings and is co-organising the 2018 Early Career and Postgraduate Conference.

Postgraduate Representative: Paul Stephens (University of Oxford)

Paul is a DPhil student in English Literature at Lincoln College, Oxford (2016-2019).  In addition to his role as College Warden, he is the (MCR) Academic Representative for postgraduate students at Lincoln, Treasurer of Oxford’s Romanticism and Eighteenth-Century Studies (RECSO) Network, and was on the organising committee for the Oxford English Graduate Conference 2017.  He represents the interests of postgraduates on the committee and is co-organiser of the 2018 Early Career and Postgraduate Conference.

Co-Opted Positions

As well as its elected members, the Executive include a number of co-opted specialists who bring particular expertise to the association.  The co-opted members for 2017-19 are:

Francesca Benatti (Open University)

Francesca is assisting Nicky Watson with the development of ERA’s digital presence.

Jeff Cowton (Wordsworth Trust)

Jeff is responsible for the Wordsworth Trust Fellowship and for developing liaisons with similar partners.

Gillian Dow (Chawton House and the University of Southampton)

Gillian is responsible for developing BARS’ events and public engagement activities.

Claire Connolly (University College Cork)

Claire is Chair of the BARS First Book Prize.

Anna Mercer (University of York)

Anna has been working on the BARS blog with Matthew Sangster since 2015, when she started the blog series ‘On This Day’.  She has been editing the blog since 2016.  She is an Early Career Researcher working on literary relationships of the Romantic Period.  She recently completed her PhD on the Shelleys at the University of York.

Susan Oliver (University of Essex)

Susan is a long-time member of the Executive responsible for fronting BARS at the annual NASSR conferences.

Neil Ramsey (University of New South Wales)

Neil manages the mailbase and the BARS news alert system, and is responsible for liaising with the Romantic Studies Association of Australasia (RSAA).

Lynda Pratt (University of Nottingham)

Lynda is one of the organisers of the 2019 BARS International Conference, ‘Romantic Facts and Fantasies’.

Matthew Ward (University of Birmingham)

Matthew Ward currently manages the Nineteenth-Century Matters Early Career Fellowship.  He was previously Early Career and Postgraduate rep.