University Head of School selected as member of Blue Plaques Panel

University of Leicester’s Head of Museum Studies has been announced as one of the newest members of English Heritage’s Blue Plaques Panel.

Professor Tilly Blyth is one of four industry experts selected to help decide the newest additions to London’s blue plaque scheme.

The scheme has become an integral feature of London’s streetscape, running for over 150 years. Across the capital, 1,000 plaques honour the notable women and men who have lived or worked in them.

Amongst them are the Bloomsbury Group members, Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant whose plaque was unveiled today (16 November) at 46 Gordon Square in Bloomsbury.

Alongside Professor Blyth, new members of the panel are British saxophonist and composer YolanDa Brown; mechanical engineer, broadcaster, and author, Dr Shini Somara; and BBC Radio 3 presenter Petroc Trelawney. The new members will bring their expertise to the panel from January 2024.

Professor William Whyte, Architectural historian and Chair of the Blue Plaques Panel, said: “The extraordinary and wide-ranging expertise of our Panel is a key part of what makes the English Heritage Blue Plaques so admired and so trusted as memorials.

“The fascinating, lively and always high-quality discussions with the existing panel have ignited what I imagine will be a lifelong love of the Blue Plaques Scheme. I look forward to welcoming Tilly, YolanDa, Shini and Petroc to deliberate with us soon.”

Professor Tilly Blyth said: “When I was invited to join the Blue Plaques Panel, I started thinking about who might be nominated next and who we might have the opportunity to discuss in our panel meetings.

“There are certainly some tough acts to follow – pioneer of computing Ada Lovelace springs to mind – and I am excited to help find worthy additions to the scheme and to support English Heritage in ensuring the scheme reflects the diversity of the capital.”