John Fell

The material released in 2013–14 depends directly on the financial support of the John Fell Fund of the University of Oxford, which has made it possible for the project to employ David X Carpenter to work with Richard Sharpe in bringing beneficiary archives to a level of completion suitable for on-line publication.

The work of collecting, transcribing, collating, and drafting began with one year’s funding in 2001–2 from the Aurelius Trust, which enabled the collection of texts of known charters. A second year was supported by the Oxford University Research Development Fund, which allowed work on basic drafting to begin, using the charters of William II as a test-case for the approach. During these two years the project assistant was Dr Nicholas Karn, now lecturer at Southampton university. During 2003–6 the Arts and Humanities Research Board provided major funding, making it possible to employ two research assistants on a full time basis, Dr Mark Hagger, now lecturer at Bangor university, and Dr Hugh Doherty, now lecturer at the University of East Anglia. Dr Karn, by this date British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at Christ Church Oxford, continued to contribute. By the end of 2006 a raw draft existed, running to 3700 pages, on which Professor Sharpe continued to work as other activites allowed, but unaided progress was not sufficiently fast to make completion something readily envisaged.

The arrival of David X Carpenter, fresh from the completion of his edition of a major cartulary from St Leonard’s Hospital in York, and adjustments in Professor Sharpe’s current responsibilities, have now made substantial progress possible, for which the John Fell Fund deserves the thanks of all users of this material. Continued on-line publication will depend on finding continuity of funding for five years: the project team is actively seeking financial support.


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