Research Bursary

Burney Society UK Research Bursary  2023 

Burney Society Bursary Report
AGM, Sunday 17 th September 2023

This year’s Bursary has been awarded for her very strong application to Hannah Wilson, a
PhD student at Cambridge University, who is working on a thesis entitled, ‘Gift Exchange
and Consent in Eighteenth-Century Women’s Writing, 1740-1820’. Hannah will be
consulting items in the Mary Hamilton Papers at the John Rylands Library, Manchester
University, as well as jewellery collections in Manchester Art Gallery, in order to enrich the
contexts for her considerations of philanthropy and benevolence in Cecilia and her analysis
of Edgar’s gift of a locket containing a lock of hair to the protagonist in Camilla. Many
thanks to the committee for their support for making the award to Hannah, and especially to
Sophie for the helpful steer in relation to the availability of the Mary Hamilton Papers in
digitised form and thus the advice to consider focusing on material yet to be transcribed in
visits to the John Rylands, which was passed on to Hannah. We look forward to hearing more
about her research in due course.

Gillian Skinner, 16 th September 2023.

General information on the Burney Society UK Research Bursary. 

The Burney Society UK Research Bursary is open to post-graduate students, recent students (within 5 years of graduation) and independent scholars (those who are not currently employed by a university on a permanent/open-ended contract) for research into members of the Burney family and/or their wider circle. It is open to international applicants. 

The research should be based on, but not necessarily restricted to, UK Records and Archives, and other research sources.

An award of £300 is made towards any justifiable research expenses. Expenses could include access to archival and other research materials, photocopying, scanning, childcare, travel, and accommodation. The successful candidate will also receive membership of the Burney Society UK for the relevant year. 

An initial sum of £150 will be paid in advance to the successful candidate, with the remaining £150 paid on receipt of invoices/remittances and the production of a research progress paper for the 2023 Burney Society UK AGM.  This paper will also be considered for our Newsletter and website.

We will post a notice on this website page when we start our 2024 round of bursary applications. 

Notes for Applicants.

Apart from having a project that clearly relates to Frances Burney, her family or wider circle, the most important qualities in a successful application are as follows:

A well-thought-out and achievable plan of research (if your plan is part of a larger project, it is good to be able to show what discrete element or aspect of that project you are focusing on in this application). As part of your plan, explain how your research relates to previous and current work in the field.

A clearly-articulated reason for the need to visit/access libraries/archives – ideally, specify not only which UK and other libraries/archives you wish to visit or access but also which items you are interested in seeing and how you hope this opportunity will further your research. There needs to be a particular connection between the archival work proposed and your research goals.

For further information please contact Dr Gillian Skinner via with Bursary in the subject line.


Burney Society UK Research Bursary Winner 2021-2022

We are delighted to announce that Catherine Pocock was awarded our 2021-2022 research bursary to carry out research on Frances Burney D’Arblay and women’s publishing experience in eighteenth-century Britain. Catherine gave a paper on her research at our June 2022 conference.