While the Network was in discussions about revamping its organisation and website, the COVID-19 pandemic struck, meaning the very much regretted postponement of DWFTH 5, which was to have been held at Maynooth University, Ireland, in May. However, we are very encouraged by the increase in WFTHN membership during this difficult time. A small co-ordinating group has now met via the Zoom conferencing facility with Sarah Arnold, who leads the Maynooth team, to discuss the way forward, both for the conference and the future of the Network.
Given the pressure posed by multiple postponed conferences crowding into 2021 and the Women and Silent Conference already scheduled for June 2021, the Maynooth team will prospect the possibility of hosting a one-day workshop/symposium in July 2021, emphasising women’s television and radio history, which the Network is keen to develop. Decisions on the rescheduling of DWFTH 5, however, will be made when we know where we are with the pandemic, hopefully in the Autumn. So please do keep in touch via our Website and postings on our Listserv–which we encourage you to join via the WFTHN website and to use it as a means of circulating ideas and information directly to other members.
For the time being, our focus will be on developing the website further as a resource hub, particularly for the online research resources so necessary when libraries are closed. We will, as soon as possible, be soliciting the membership through the Listserv for input towards building up this facility, so again please watch for details of how to do this when they become available. At the same time, we hope to keep a rolling series of blogs circulating (the first will be posted shortly); and we encourage anyone willing to write one to contact Angela Martin, our current blog editor, at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will also continue to feed Twitter with women’s film and television history news.
In the meantime we hope everyone is keeping safe and well, and look forward to us all meeting, when possible, at our next workshop or conference.