Date of release: Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Dr Emma HannaA £2.5 million research fund has established special Engagement Centres to commemorate the Great War, one of which is to feature the research of University of Greenwich historian Emma Hanna.

Five new Engagement Centres will support community research projects about the conflict, connecting academic and public histories as part of the centenary commemorations of the First World War taking place this year.

A Senior Lecturer in History in the Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities, Emma is one of four Co-Investigators in the "Gateways to the First World War" centre in Kent. She will be working on a number of events and initiatives to further encourage community engagement with the centenary of 1914-1918.

Emma says: "This is a fantastic opportunity for everyone. There is plenty in the pipeline as the centenary will run to at least November 2018, and we are keen to present the Great War in 3D – land, sea and air – it's not all about trenches and poetry! "

Work has already begun to commemorate the war. A public open day will be held at the National Maritime Museum on Sunday 28 September 2014 to show the public how they might further their own research into the conflict. Similar events will take place in Hampshire, Sussex and Kent later in the year, and a symposium for the 100th anniversary of the 'Christmas Truce' will take place on Friday 12 December 2014 at the University of Kent.

Gateways will work in co-operation with major partners in the heritage sector through a range of activities, including open lectures and conferences, tours of archives, providing learning resources, family history workshops and self-tour guides to the battlefields. The Gateways centre involves the universities of Greenwich, Portsmouth, Brighton, Canterbury Christ Church, Southampton, Sussex, and Kent, which will lead the project overall. Funding is provided by the Heritage Lottery Fund, with the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC), with the centres expected to last for at least three years. Other centres are based at Birmingham, Belfast, Hertfordshire and Nottingham.

Alongside her work with the Centre, Emma will be speaking at a number of major conferences, and she has also been invited to open the National Maritime Museum's 'War and Memory' lecture series, with a talk on 'The myths of the First World War'. The lecture will take place at 11am on 1 May at the Museum.

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Story by Public Relations