The Wordsworth Conference Foundation announces
The 47th Wordsworth Summer Conference, 2018
Monday 6 August to Thursday 16 August at Rydal Hall, Cumbria
The 2018 Wordsworth Summer Conference at elegant Rydal Hall will be the 47th since Richard Wordsworth’s inaugural conference gathering in 1970. This year we continue the format pioneered by Richard, mingling lectures, papers and lively academic debate with energetic fell walking, picturesque rambles, and excursions to places of Wordsworthian and Romantic interest. Upper and Lower Rydal Falls are within the grounds of the Hall, and Rydal Mount – Wordsworth’s home from 1813 until 1850 – is a two-minute walk away. In the evenings participants relax with poetry and music in the bar at Rydal Hall, wander through the terraced gardens, or stroll down to Rydal water for a moonlight swim …
By courtesy of the Wordsworth Trust, our opening night will include a reception at the Wordsworth Museum followed by a candle light visit to Dove Cottage. There will be a separate opportunity to explore the treasures of the Wordsworth Trust’s collections with the curator Jeff Cowton, and an evening visit to Wordsworth’s Rydal Mount and garden.
In 2018 our excursions are likely to include the picturesque coastal village St Bees, Ravenglass, and Muncaster Castle. High points for energetic fell walkers are likely to include Crinkle Crags, Sheffield Pike, Great End, and Glaramara by the spectacular waterfall at Taylor Ghyll Force.
Format and Costs: The 2018 Summer Conference is in two parts of 5 days each, with a changeover day on Saturday 11 August. The registration fee, which includes excursions, is the same as last year despite some increases in costs. This offers exceptional value at £250 for ten days and £175 for five days. For postgraduates, we offer a generous range of bursary funds (see below) to reduce rates for attendance. All participants will take all meals at Rydal Hall. Full Board at Rydal Hall Diocesan Conference Centre is available, and at Rydal Hall Youth Centre on the same site. Non-resident rates and a day rate are also available. For estimates of 2018 accommodation and related costs please visit
Non-resident registration: from £90 per day (inclusive of lunch, dinner, excursions, receptions).
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Call for Papers
We invite proposals for twenty-minute papers on all aspects of William Wordsworth, his contemporaries and the Romantic period. Papers that identify a bicentenary theme, 1818–2018, will be welcomed but this is not intended as an exclusive requirement. Please note that participants presenting papers must attend as full participants for either Part 1 or Part 2, or the whole ten-day conference.
Proposals: 250 word proposals for papers of no more than 2750 words, together with a brief autobiographical paragraph, unformatted, should occupy no more than 2 sides of A4 in MS Word format. Please remember to include your name, institution and e-mail address on the abstract. Please do not send proposals as a pdf file as they will be copied into a composite document. Proposals should be e-mailed by 15 April 2018 to
All other enquiries about accommodation, costs etc. should be e-mailed to the Conference Administrator, Carrie Taylor, at
Bursaries for the 2018 Wordsworth Summer Conference
Twelve bursaries of £400 are available for the 2018 conference. These bursaries are intended to enable young scholars, principally at postgraduate and early post-doctoral level, to enjoy ten active and stimulating days in the unique environment of Rydal and Grasmere, for about half the cost of the event. Please bring this announcement to the attention of qualifying applicants.
5 Richard Wordsworth Bursaries £400 for Postgraduate or Postdoctoral applicants working in English or Anglo-American Romanticism
5 Ena Wordsworth Bursaries £400 for Postgraduate students working on William or Dorothy Wordsworth or in the Field of English Romanticism
2 Jonathan Wordsworth Bursaries £400 for Postgraduate students working on William Wordsworth or in the Field of English Romanticism
Terms and Conditions: Bursaries are intended to meet approximately half of the cost of attending the conference. Holders of bursaries will be so designated on the list of participants or the conference programme. The bursary will be applied in the first instance to conference fees, and the balance to accommodation in the new Rydal Hall Youth Centre, making the total cost of the conference, to a bursar, either £420 (5 person dormitory) or £470 (2/3 person en suite dormitory) for the full ten-day conference programme and ten nights’ full board. Bursars are expected to attend all lectures, papers and conference events, and acceptance of a bursary implies an undertaking to do so.
Your application should be in the form of a Word attachment (not PDF) containing a paper proposal of 300 words, together with a short unformatted c.v. in the same file, the entire application being not more than two sides of A4 (the file will be copied and pasted into a composite file, so please avoid elaborate formatting). Applicants should also arrange for a short letter of academic recommendation to be sent independently to the same email address, verifying the applicant’s status and country of residence. Candidates need not specify which bursary they are applying for. They will automatically be considered for any bursary for which they are eligible.
Please note that we may award a bursary but without having space to include the proposed paper on the conference programme: such papers may, however, be ‘taken as read’, that is, made available in print form at the conference, if the proposer so chooses. Papers should be no longer than 2750 words (rapid delivery invariably impedes communication) and may address any area of Romanticism.
Bursary applications and references should be submitted by 15 April 2018 to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please be sure to identify your e-mail as ‘BURSARY APPLICATION’.
Nicholas Roe, Conference Director
Sharon Tai, Postgraduate Representative
Carrie Taylor, Wordsworth Conference Foundation Administrator
on behalf of the Trustees of the Wordsworth Conference Foundation
The Wordsworth Conference Foundation is a registered charity, number 1124319