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Tracy Borman 3

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Graduate returns to Hull to share insights of royal palaces and her work as historian, broadcaster and author

Hull graduate Tracy Borman high-profile historian, author and broadcaster returns to campus to share her ‘Inspired in Hull’ story.

The event, which is the next public lecture in the popular and newly-returned University of Hull alumni series, takes place at 7pm on Tuesday 1 November in the University’s Middleton Hall.

A great communicator, passionate advocate for the teaching and learning of history and a regular on TV and radio, Tracy is also Joint Chief Curator for Historic Royal Palaces.

A brilliant historian and a fascinating story-teller, Tracy is interested in the people behind the events, and the men and women who surround the great figures we all know so well.

Tracy studied and taught history at the University of Hull and was awarded a PhD in 1997 before going on to a hugely successful career in heritage. She is Chief Executive of the Heritage Education Trust, a charity that encourages children to visit and learn from historic properties.

Her role as joint Chief Curator for Historic Royal Palaces, encompasses Hampton Court Palace, the Tower of London, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace, the Banqueting House, Whitehall and Hillsborough Castle which are managed by the charity.

She is a regular on television and radio and has presented documentaries and series on Channel 5 and Yesterday TV. A prolific author, she’s published 13 books in the last 15 years including both fiction and non-fiction works. She also contributes regular articles to BBC History Magazine.

Tracy Borman 1
Tracy studied and taught history at the University of Hull.

Tracy said: “The University has played a huge role in my life and career and I will be forever grateful to it for that. I will freely admit that I didn’t want to go to university – I was such a homebird that the prospect of leaving to live in a different city terrified me! But from the moment I first visited Hull on an open day, I felt at home.

“Of all the universities I visited, Hull had the friendliest atmosphere – not to mention a fantastic History Department. I put it down as my first choice but, really, I’d already decided that it was my only choice.

“Ironically, given I’d been so reticent about going to university, I ended up staying at Hull for almost seven years, during which time I completed a BA, MA and PhD. The knowledge and skills that I gained along the way have been utterly invaluable to my future career as a historian, author and broadcaster.

“It meant the world to me when I was awarded an Honorary Degree by the University in 2017. I feel enormously privileged to have been recognised in this way by an institution that has had such a formative impact on my life and career.

“I have a photograph of me receiving the degree proudly displayed in my study. If ever I’m suffering from a lack of motivation with my writing or other work, I just look at that and feel humbled and inspired all over again.”

Earlier this autumn, our University of Hull Alumni Association caught up with Tracy to ask here about her academic and professional career, her time at the University of Hull, and the transition from writing non-fiction to historical-based fiction. To read the article: History is about human beings, not just dates and events, here.

Dr Ben Butler, Head of Development and Alumni Relations: “We are delighted to be bringing our popular alumni lecture series Inspired in Hull back in style this autumn.

“Tracy is an exceptional ambassador for the University, a fascinating storyteller, and a prolific contributor to our understanding of the history of Britain.

“We are delighted to welcome her back to the place where it all started.”

Find further details of the Inspired in Hull series and book tickets here.

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