School of English

Image of Kathryn Bullen

Kathryn Bullen

Research Student,


Research Summary

Current Status

PhD (full-time) - currently registered

Research Topic

Assess the impact of language, history and landscape on place-names on the Isle of Axholme.

Research Summary

My research aims to discover what place-names in the Isle of Axholme can tell us about the historical change to society and culture in North Lincolnshire, which lies within the area historically known as the Danelaw. It will collect historical forms of place-names in order to build a strong foundation for further investigation. The project will benefit the local community and environmental agencies by promoting a greater appreciation for the landscape and an awareness of possible changes in the future which connect with its more watery past. It will also provide material for a publishable volume of the English Place-Name Society, contributing to the survey for Lincolnshire.

Living in North Lincolnshire, I am familiar with the project area's landscape and historical context, as well as the relationship of the local people with their inland island environment, which is defined by natural and man-made waterways and is still known locally as 'The Isle'. Substantial alterations to the landscape occurred due to drainage and land reclamation in the 1620s, changing from a predominantly marshy area liable to flooding into productive agricultural land. Consequently contemporary place-names may not now reflect their original meanings at the time of place-name coinage, but meanings may well become more relevant in the future following likely environmental changes.

Research Interests


Viking and Anglo-Saxon history

Wetland habitats

Research Supervisors

Dr Jayne Carroll

Dr John Baker

Dr Richard Jones

Academic History

BA (Hons) English Literature/German Language and Contemporary Studies - Oxford Brookes University

PGCE - University of Huddersfield, 2007

Diploma in Teaching English (literacy) in the Lifelong Learning Sector - University of Hull, 2010

MA English Studies (Distinction) - University of Nottingham, 2016-2018

Scholarships & Funding

The Christine Fell Award - 10/2019

Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Studies, University of London: London International Palaeography Summer School 2020 - Institutional Bursary (postponed to 2021)

Midlands4Cities full-time award - from 10/2020 to 3/2023

Research Institutes, Centres and/or Research Clusters Memberships

Institute for Name-Studies

English Place-Name Society

Society for Name Studies in Britain and Ireland

International Council of Onomastic Sciences (ICOS)

Centre for the Study of the Viking Age

Viking Society for Northern Research

Regia Anglorum

British Association for Local History

Conference Papers & Presentations

'Place-Names in North Lincolnshire', U3A History Group Scunthorpe - 3/2019

'Place-Names in North Lincolnshire', University Campus North Lincolnshire (part of University of Lincoln) - 6/6/2019

'Axholme: Place-Names in the Marsh - public engagement', East Midlands Doctoral Network Postgraduate Research Conference (Public Engagement), University of Derby - 11/9/2019

'Axholme: Place-Names in the Marsh - past, present and future', Isle of Axholme and Hatfield Chase Landscape Partnership - 23/4/2020: Sway overview

'Crowle Bogland' - poetry performance at Words on the Wall, poetry and spoken word online event - 21/6/2020

'Axholme: Place-Names in the Marsh - a journey into bog and moor', SNSBI online autumn conference - 17/10/2020

Additional Information

Research Assistant - transcription of poetry from 19th century Indian newspapers, University of Nottingham - 6-7/2019

Research Assistant - organising, checking and compiling abstracts for the British Association for Romantic Studies 16th International Conference 2019, University of Nottingham - 6-7/2019

Pod User Tester - testing and providing feedback on two new pods for Applied English MA, University of Nottingham - 6-7/2020

School of English

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