University of Worcester research collections

Developed to support current specialisms in research and curriculum studies within the University of Worcester, the Research Collections include an exceptional range of historical children’s literature of the 19th and 20th centuries, as well as a significant local business archive and a fine collection of 18th century printed books.

The collections loosely represent 5 key themes:

The key collections – Brown, Westerman, Wynne and Hawkes – have a strong emphasis on adventure stories, predominantly featuring child protagonists in a range of historical or colonial settings. A fine collection of contemporary multicultural children’s literature allows the researcher to explore historical adventure books from another viewpoint.

Other collections focus on childhood, particularly the physical representation of children at play and personal writing about childhood experience; and on literary publication and design.

The Research Collections also include items to support local historical research including the library of the Worcestershire Archaeological Society; the archive of Kays & Co Ltd, 1890-2007, the Worcester-based mail order company; a collection of published works by local authors; and a large number of antiquarian publications, focussing mainly on historical subjects.

The Collections are available to view by appointment at the University of Worcester, St John's Campus, Henwick Grove, Worcester, WR2 6AJ, UK

We advise you to contact the Research Team in advance to book your visit.

Who can use the Collections?

  • Postgraduate students
  • Undergraduates
  • Non-affiliated researchers (e.g. any independent researchers whose work would be enriched by using the collections).
  • International students
  • Anybody who has an interest in the content of the Collections