Network members

Meet the team


Jon Stobart

Professor of Social History, Manchester Metropolitan University

My research centres on retailing and consumption in the long eighteenth century. Recent projects have focused on comfort in the country house, the consumption practices of the English clergy, and the nature, use and meaning of global goods in country houses. I am currently working on the consumption of second-hand goods and the role of auctions in domestic consumption in the British Caribbean.

Kristine Dyrmann

Junior Research Fellow at the Faculty of History & Linacre College, University of Oxford

I am a historian of women and gender with an interest in diplomatic practices and the materiality of informal political spaces in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. During my previous positions in the heritage sector, I have researched servants in eighteenth-century Danish country houses, investigating the hierarchies and everyday experiences of servants at two country estates.


Signe Boeskov

Head of Research, The Danish Research Centre for Manorial Studies, Gammel Estrup – The Danish Manor & Estate Museum.

My research has dealt with elite families, bourgeois and noble ideals, as well as with consumption and material culture in manorial milieus in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries Denmark. I am currently researching servants and the household as organisation on Danish manors using a combination of estate records and database material based on Danish census information.

Stephane Castelluccio

Director of Research at the Centre André Chastel UMR 8150 of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in the Institut national d’Histoire de l’art in Paris beginning in 1994.

I am a specialist in the history of the royal palaces, interior decoration, furniture, collections of fine arts, the luxury trade and the social relationships in France during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. I have published hundred articles and fifteen books including: L’Éclairage, le chauffage et l’eau aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles (Lighting, heating and water in the 17th and 18th centuries, 2016); La Noblesse et ses domestiques au XVIIIe siècle (The nobility and their servants in the 18th century, 2021); Les Chaises et les tables volantes au XVIIIe siècle (Mechanicals chairs and tables in the 18th century, 2023).

Terence Dooley

Professor of History and Head of Department, Maynooth University

I am Director of the Centre for the Study of Historic Irish Houses and Estates, a unique public-private venture, which aims to secure and enhance public appreciation of historic properties by supporting education, research and scholarly publication. I specialise in Irish social and political history of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, particularly the history of Irish country houses and the landed class; land and politics in independent Ireland; the working of the Irish Land Commission from 1881 to 1992; and the revolutionary period 1916-23. My latest book is Burning the Big House: The Story of the Irish Country House in War and Revolution (New Haven and London, 2022).

Sophie Dunn

My research focuses on travel, social identity, and mobility in the long eighteenth century. I am interested in the relationship between gender, social rank, and agency. The geographical focus is on Britain and Europe with special attention to Scotland. Recent publications analyse the master-servant relationship on the road and servants’ willingness to travel in their employment.

Bård Frydenlund

Director (CEO) at the Constitutional History Museum of Norway – Eidsvoll 1814

Bård Frydenlund – Wikipedia

Research interests: Political, social and economic history 1700-1830 in Scandinavia. Recent projects include comparative constitutional history in Norway and USA, biographical/prosopographical/network research on “founding fathers”, civic rights in constitutional drafts, stewardship within merchant, business and industry organisations, merchant networks in the North Sea region, and the manor/estate as a negotiating political space.

Rupert Goulding, FSA

Interim Head Curator of the National Trust of England, Wales and Northern Ireland

I have worked for the National Trust for over 15 years, and previously as the Senior Curator for the South West region and national lead for curatorial research development. My major project work includes the redevelopment of Chedworth Roman Villa, the Bath Assembly Rooms, and the recently completed re-display and interpretation of Dyrham Park. I have published on these and other sites and in 2018 co-curated Prized Possessions, Dutch Paintings from National Trust Houses which toured internationally.

Andrew Hann

Historians Team Leader, English Heritage

Our Researchers | English Heritage (

My research focuses on country houses and historic designed landscapes, looking particularly at their social and economic histories. I have worked recently on a scheme of garden interpretation at Wrest Park in Bedfordshire and a large National Lottery Heritage Fund-supported project at Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens in Northumberland. Other relevant work includes research and interpretation of the service wing and children’s nursery at Audley End in Essex and ongoing work with our volunteer history teams at Audley End, Belsay and Wrest Park to document the servants and estate workers associated with those sites.

Johanna Ilmakunnas

Professor of Nordic History, Åbo Akademi University

My research interests include material culture, consumption, lifestyle, work and leisure, family and gender history in the long eighteenth century. I have researched on servants in urban and rural aristocratic households in Sweden and representations of servants’ work in eighteenth-century genre paintings. Currently, I’m working on officers’ careers in Finland from early eighteenth to early twentieth century and material culture of music life, theatre and opera in Paris and Turku, c.1790–1840.

Karen Lipsedge

Associate Professor in English Literature, Kingston Univesity

My research focuses on eighteenth-century domestic space, interiors, the relationship between objects and people, and the novel. Recent projects have focused on the representation of the home in eighteenth-century novels and art. Currently, I am working on uncovering and celebrating the untold stories of eighteenth-century peoples and material objects hiding in plain sight, with a particular focus on how and who tells those stories both now and in the future.

Hanne Østhus

Associate Professor, Department of Historical and Classical Studies, Norwegian University of Science and Technology

I am a social and labour historian interested in early modern work relations, and have particularly focused my research on domestic service enslavement in the Danish-Norwegian state in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

Anne Sophie Overkamp

Senior Researcher at the Institute for Modern History, University of Tübingen

I am a social and economic historian with a particular interest in material culture and consumption in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In a previous project I researched commercial families and their households as members of “polite society”. My current research topic centres on consumption in German country houses, both below and above the stairs.

Kate Retford

Professor of History of Art and Head of School of Historical Studies, Birkbeck, University of London

I am an historian of eighteenth-century British art and culture, with specialisms in portraiture, gender, and the country house. My recent publications include The Conversation Piece: Making Modern Art in Eighteenth-Century Britain (2017) and The Georgian London Town House: Building, Collecting and Display, co-edited with Susanna Avery-Quash (2019). I am currently working on a book about print rooms in eighteenth-century country houses, which was funded by a Leverhulme Research Fellowship in 2021–2022

Göran Ulväng

Associate Professor at the Department of Economic History, Uppsala University

My research is mainly on material culture, consumption and finances in 18th and 19th century Sweden, with a special focus on manors and manorial culture. Recent projects have centred on pawn shops, the church as a local bank, the organization of fire insurance and manorial entails. I am currently working on fairs as distributers of goods and the salaries and material culture of servants in c1750 to 1850.