Postgraduate and early career scholars are represented on the executive committee of the Social History Society by two representatives. One is elected each year for a two year term.

2017-19: Cara Dobbing

Cara is a third year PhD student at the University of Leicester. Her research examines the patients who were circulated in and out of the Cumberland and Westmorland Lunatic Asylum (today known as Garlands Hospital) from its inception in 1862 until the outbreak of war in 1914.

Her work focuses on redressing the imbalance of institutional asylum histories which neglect the experiences of pauper patients. The movement of these patients sits at the heart of her work, as the provision of mental health care in this period was not a stationary experience.

You can visit her blog here, where she regularly posts about her research.

If you have any queries or problems you wish to voice, you can contact Cara by email at or on Twitter @caradobbing

2018-20: Laura Sefton

Profile picture of Laura Sefton

Laura is a PhD student at the University of Birmingham. Her research analyses connections between childhood, consumerism, and citizenship in twentieth century Britain.

Her research is informed by approaches from both consumer history and the history and sociology of childhood. In combining these approaches, Laura is contributing to a growing body of scholarship dedicated to uncovering the historical experiences of children.

Laura is committed to improving the position of postgraduates and early career researchers within the academy. She is especially interested in the relationship between precarity and the historical discipline.

If you have any problems or queries that you wish to voice, you contact Laura by email at or on Twitter @LauraJSefton