christianity and history forum
Day conference 15 April 2014 Christianity and National Identity
Gladstone’s library, Hawarden, North Wales

Report on Day Conference at Gladstone’s Library April 2014

On 15 April a small number of people gathered at Gladstone’s Library, Hawarden, N Wales, for a CHF day conference.  The topic was ‘Christianity and National Identity’ and those who attended enjoyed the variety of speakers and the opportunities for discussion. One attendee commented ‘It was a very stimulating day – I wish it had been longer’, whilst the giver of one of the papers clearly appreciated the other contributors and the opportunity to see people:  ‘I enjoyed the CHF event: the other two papers were very good, and it was good to catch up with folk’.

The three speakers, from Wales, Scotland and England approached the subject in a variety of ways. Siôn Aled Owen in his paper on 'Christianity and national identity in Wales' gave us a helpful historical overview of the relationship between state and church in Wales during several centuries.  In contrast, Scott Spurlock whose paper was entitled  'Religion and national identity in early modern Scotland’ focused on a comparatively short period of time in more detail, leading us carefully through the complexities of this period of Scottish history.  The lunch break gave us all opportunities to socialize, and briefly enjoy the sunshine outside.  

The afternoon started with a session discussing some of the ideas that had emerged in the morning along with others pertinent to the topic. Finally, the day was capably rounded off by John Maiden in his study of some Protestant attitudes to Rome in  ‘The Vatican, European conflict and the Common Market: British Protestants and Papal Conspiracy in the Twentieth Century’ .

Thank you to all who came: it would be interesting to know for further planning, from those who could not be there, if it was the location, the topic, or the timing which prevented them from attending.  Email me at

Linda Wilson