Jewish Country Houses – Objects, Networks, People is led by the University of Oxford with Durham University and the University of Cardiff, in partnership with the heritage sector, including the National Trust. The project focuses on a hitherto unidentified group of country houses in the UK and continental Europe owned, renewed and sometimes built by Jews and those of Jewish origin. Some are now museums of international importance, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors each year; many more have been demolished or repurposed. A few are modern ruins, hovering between memory and oblivion.
This project is the first of its kind to attempt to write these houses and their owners back into British, European, and Jewish history and to establish their importance as sites of European - and Jewish - memory.
David Feldman, Director of the Pears Institute has been involved with the project since its inception. In December 2019 he gave the keynote lecture on ‘Antisemitism, Jews and History’ at a workshop for heritage professionals entitled ‘Jewish Stories and the National Heritage’ held at the National Trust property Polesden Lacey in Surrey.
David Feldman’s lecture is included in Jewish Country Houses, A Resource Pack for UK Heritage Professionals (May 2020) available to download here.
The Project Team
Abigail Green, University of Oxford (Principal Investigator)
Juliet Carey, Waddesdon Manor
Silvia Davoli, Strawberry Hill House
Jaclyn Granick, University of Cardiff
Thomas Stammers, Durham University
This four-year research project commenced in October 2019 and is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.