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University academic the guest speaker at Finnish Ambassador residence

AN ACADEMIC of the University of Chichester is to speak at the residence of the Finnish Ambassador in London.

Dr Amanda Richardson of the Department of History and Politics will speak at a seminar on Thursday 23 March about the life and work of the acclaimed art historian Tancred Borenius (1885-1948).

It will follow the unveiling of a blue plaque by the Finnish Ambassador HE Ms Päivi Luostarinen at 28 Kensington Gate - Borenius’s home from 1936 to 1941.

In 1933 to 1939 Borenius led the excavations at the site of the medieval royal palace of Clarendon near Salisbury, which was a focus of Dr Richardson’s PhD The Forest, Park, and Palace of Clarendon.

He was a pioneer historian of medieval English art and his book English Medieval Painting was published in 1927 followed by St Thomas Becket in Art in 1932.

Dr Richardson will speak alongside experts from Cambridge University, University College London, and the Universities of Helsinki and Winchester.

She said: “It’s great that Borenius’s achievements, including his seminal work on medieval art and archaeology, are finally being recognised.

"I am especially pleased to play my part because the Department of History and Politics has strong links with Finland through the Erasmus scheme and as exchange co-ordinator I have visited our students there often.”


When Finland declared independence in 1917, Borenius headed a diplomatic mission to secure its recognition from Britain and elsewhere.

He had friends in the Bloomsbury Group as well as others such as Lady Diana Cooper and Augustus John - and he also knew Churchill and may have worked for the British intelligence services during the Second World War.

To find out more about Dr Amanda Richardson and her research visit

Alternatively for more about the Department of History and Politics at the University of Chichester go to