History Graduate Receives Award from Ancient Trade Guild

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A History graduate from the University of Worcester has received a special award from one of the City’s oldest organisations.

Kelly Warwick is the second recipient of the Clothiers Company of Worcester Charitable Foundation’s Annual Award. The Foundation was formed in 2014 with one of its objectives being to support the education of young people in Worcestershire.

The Clothiers Company is Worcester’s ancient trade guild which was granted a Royal Charter by Queen Elizabeth 1 in 1590.

Kelly Warwick, from Solihull, was chosen as the second recipient of the award for her History dissertation on parish apprenticeships in Worcestershire between 1780 and 1820.

“I am extremely honoured to receive this award and I am so grateful for all the support I had from my tutors, especially my supervisor, Professor Suzanne Schwarz,” said the 22-year-old. “It is truly the cherry on top of the cake to be awarded this, especially after achieving a First in my dissertation.

“I have always loved social history and found it fascinating looking through all the archives at The Hive. Nowadays some people may say we are just a number, but it was so important for me to not treat all these parish apprentices as numbers but the individuals who they were. The children all played such a vital role in the Industrial Revolution and allowing England to have progressed so rapidly during the period. Some of the children were as young as seven when they were apprenticed and I have a younger sister who is 10, so it's hard to believe during that time period she would have been doing such strenuous and hard work. It was really enjoyable researching about Worcestershire, all the many trades and jobs the apprentices were given according to their gender.”

Kelly is now hoping to pursue a career in teaching. “I would also love to complete a Masters in History,” she said. “I am currently volunteering at a Junior School and I am also working as a tour guide at a museum in Birmingham.”

Ian Smith, who is a Trustee of the Clothiers’ Company Foundation, said: “We are delighted that our second annual award has been won by Kelly. It is particularly appropriate that she should have studied apprenticeships when they were a key part of the Trade Guilds in our commercial and economic history. We are very pleased with how our partnership with the University is developing.”