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Celebrating Preservation and Access

Logo for the Archives Centre 50th anniversary

25 Sep 2023 - 26 Sep 2023

  • Start: 10:00
  • End: 18:30

Wolfson Lecture Theatre, Churchill College, Cambridge

A two-day conference to mark the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Churchill Archives Centre.

This will be a free public event in the Wolfson Lecture Theatre, Churchill College, Cambridge, CB3 0DS.

You can book to attend in person or watch on-line.

The conference will bring together archive professionals with a variety of the Centre’s researchers, past and present, to illustrate the range of research that has been facilitated since 1973 and explore some of the opportunities and challenges of the future.


Day 1 (10.00-18:30): ‘The Roskill Lecture Revisited’ – Jonathan Fenby, Margaret MacMillan and Paul Kennedy will revisit and update their past Roskill lectures.

Day 2 (10:00-16:30): ‘What’s in the Stacks? The Research library in the 21st century’ by Richard Ovenden, Librarian at the Bodleian, University of Oxford.

Colour head and shoulders photograph of Jonathan Fenby

Speakers include:

Jonathan Fenby

Jonathan Fenby, a former editor of newspapers in the UK and Asia, is the author of twenty books on China, France and the Second World War and its aftermathHe edited Reuters news service, the Observer in Britain and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong as well as holding senior editorial positions at The Economist, The Guardian and The Independent. He was also a founding partner of the analytical service, Trusted Sources, where he directed the China coverage. He is a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) and a Chevalier of both the French Légion d’Honneur and Ordre National du Mérite. 


Half length colour photograph of Paul Kennedy, leaning one elbow on a table and looking at the camera

Professor Paul Kennedy

Paul Kennedy is the J. Richardson Dilworth Professor of History at Yale University.  He holds many honorary degrees, and is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was made a C.B.E. in 2000 for services to History and elected a Fellow of the British Academy in June 2003.  Professor Kennedy is the author or editor of over twenty books, including The Rise of the Anglo-German AntagonismThe War Plans of the Great Powers, The Realities Behind Diplomacy, and Preparing for the Twenty-First Century. His best-known work is The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers, which provoked an intense debate on its publication in 1988 and has been translated into over twenty languages.

In 1991, he edited a collection entitled Grand Strategies in War and Peace.  His 2006 book The Parliament of Man contemplates the past and future of the United Nations, while his book Engineers of Victory, history through the eyes of problem-solvers during the Second World War, was published in 2013. His most recent work Victory at Sea examines the operational naval history of the Second World War and its implications for the post-war order. He is currently working on an edited collection of essays in naval strategy, a personal new book project, and starting a program for Naval-Maritime Studies at Yale.


Half length colour photograph of Professor Margaret MacMillan, standing with her arms folded

Professor Margaret MacMillan

Margaret MacMillan (Toronto and Oxford) is a professor of History at the University of Toronto and an emeritus professor of International History at Oxford University.  She was Provost of Trinity College, Toronto from 2002-7 and Warden of St Antony’s College, Oxford from 2007-2017.  She is currently a trustee of the Imperial War Museum.  Her research specializes in British imperial history and the international history of the 19th and 20th centuries.  Publications include War: How Conflict Shaped Us, Paris, 1919, and The War that Ended Peace. She gave the CBC’s Massey lectures in 2015 and the BBC’s Reith Lectures in 2018.  Awards include the Samuel Johnson prize for non-fiction and the Governor-General’s literary award.  She has honorary degrees from several universities and is an honorary Fellow of the British Academy.  She is also a Companion of the Order of Canada and an Order of Merit and Companion of Honour (UK).

Photo Credit: Ander McIntyre


Half length colour photograph of Richard Ovenden, standing on the curve of a staircase

Richard Ovenden

Richard Ovenden has been Bodley’s Librarian (the senior Executive position of the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford) since 2014. Prior to that he held positions at Durham University Library, the House of Lords Library, the National Library of Scotland, and the University of Edinburgh. He was educated at the University of Durham and University College London, and holds a Professorial Fellowship at Balliol College, Oxford, and was awarded the OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2019. 

Richard serves as President of the Digital Preservation Coalition, and as a member of the Board of the Council on Library and Information Resources (in Washington DC).  He holds Fellowships of the Royal Historical Society, the Society of Antiquaries and the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and was elected to the American Philosophical Society. He was recipient of the Walford Award for Knowledge Management and the Premio Acqui Storia in 2021. He writes extensively on libraries, archives and information management, and is the author of Burning the Books: A History of Knowledge under Attack (2020) which was BBC Radio 4’s Book of the Week, and was shortlisted for the Wolfson History Prize in 2021.