Prof Peter Borsay BA (Lancaster) PhD (Lancaster)

Prof Peter Borsay

Personal Chair

Contact Details


Professor Peter Borsay BA, PhD (Lancaster) is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He is a historian of early modern and modern Britain, particularly social, urban and cultural history. Professor Borsay is a committee member of the Pre-Modern Towns Group, a member of the International Advisory Board for Urban History and a member of the Advisory Board for The Journal of Tourism History. He has also been a member of the AHRC Peer Review College.


Module Coordinator

Professor Borsay teaches widely in British and European History from the late medieval to modern periods. At Part One he delivers an option module on 'Stuart England'. At Part Two he delivers an option module on 'From Black Death to Great Fire: the British Town 1348-1700' and a Skills, methods and sources module on 'Investigating Georgian and Victorian landscapes'; he also contributes to survey modules on' Early Modernity' and 'the British Isles in the Long Eighteenth Century', the core Part Two undergraduate module on 'Historians and the Writing of History', and to supervising dissertations. At MA level he contributes to a number of modules in the 18th century fields, and supervises dissertations.

PhD supervision:

He supervises dissertations in a variety of fields, especially eighteenth and nineteenth century urban, landscape, and leisure history, and heritage studies.


Professor Peter Borsay is currently researching the following areas: • Various aspects of British urban history 1600-2000 • Spas and seaside resorts. He was engaged in a joint project to explore the history of the resorts of Wales and the Bristol Channel 1750-1914, funded by the Board of Celtic Studies, with his own research focused on Tenby. As part of the project a bibliographical database was produced (, along with a range of conference papers and a number of publications, which included a volume of essays, edited with John Walton, on Resorts and Ports: European Seaside Towns since 1700 (Channel View, 2011). • Landscape and Heritage. Since the publication of The Image of Georgian Bath (2000) he has continued to research architectural and landscape history, the history of heritage, and the history of urban green space. He is working on a monograph for Bloomsbury on The Discovery of England, which focuses on tourism and the consumption of urban and rural landscapes between c. 1837 and 1940. Some of the results of this research can be seen in ‘Nature, the past and the English town: a counter-cultural history’, Urban History (2016). • Leisure. Developing the recreational theme in his English Urban Renaissance (1989) and History of Leisure (2006) he continues to explore various aspects of the subject of leisure. In autumn 2010 he, along with Jan Hein Furnée, co-organized an exploratory workshop (funded by the European Science Foundation) which led to a jointly edited volume on Leisure Cultures in Urban Europe, c. 1700-1870: a Transnational Perspective (Manchester University Press, 2016).



Borsay, P. 2016. Nature, the past and the English town: A counter-cultural history. Urban History 44 (1) pp. 27-43. 10.1017/S096392681500098X Cadair

Borsay, P. 2016. The urban soundscape in pre-modern England. In S. Emerit et al. (ed) Le paysage sonore de l’Antiquité: Méthodologie, historiographie et perspectives. Institut français d'archéologie orientale, Rome pp. 87-114. Cadair

Borsay, P., Furnee, J.H. 2016. Introduction. In P. Borsay., J. H. Furnee. (eds) Leisure cultures in urban Europe, c. 1700-1870: A Transnational Perspective. Studies in Popular Culture Manchester University Press pp. 1-18. Cadair


Borsay, P., Furnee, J.H. 2015. Leisure Cultures in Urban Europe c. 1700-1870: A Transnational Perspective. Studies in Popular Culture Manchester University Press, 2016 Cadair

Borsay, P. 2015. Georgian Bath; a transnational culture. In P. Borsay., J. H. Furnee. (eds) Leisure Cultures in Urban Europe c. 1700-1870: A Transnational Perspective. Studies in Popular Culture Manchester University Press pp. 93-116. Cadair


Borsay, P.N. 2013. A room with a view: visualising the seaside, c. 1750-1914. Transactions of the Royal Historical Society 23 pp. 175-201. 10.1017/S008044011300008X Cadair

Borsay, P.N. 2013. The Topography of Power: Elites and the Political Landscape of the English town 1660-1760. In J. Brown., J. Morgan-Guy., F. Knight. (eds) Religion, Identity and Conflict in Britain: From the Restoration to the Twentieth Century. Taylor & Francis, Farnham pp. 47-62. Cadair


Borsay, P.N. 2012. Pleasure gardens and urban culture in the long eighteenth century. In J. Conlin. (ed) The Pleasure Garden, from Vauxhall to Coney Island. Penn Studies in Landscape Architecture University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia pp. 49-77. Cadair

Borsay, P. 2012. Promenade en bord de ville; espace périphérique et activité récréative dans la ville anglaise et galloises, de 1700 à 1900. [Walking on the Urban Edge: Peripheral Space and Recreation in English and Welsh towns c. 1700-1900.] In P. Dubois., A. Tadié. (eds) Esthétiques de la ville britannique (XVIIIe-XIXe siècles) : Hommage à Jacques Carré. Presses de l'Université Paris-Sorbonne, Paris pp. 83-104. Cadair

Borsay, P. 2012. Town or Country? British Spas and the Urban-Rural Interface. Journal of Tourism History 4 (2) pp. 155-169. 10.1080/1755182X.2012.697489 Cadair

Borsay, P. 2012. Negotiating modernity and the past: historiography, society and culture in the English town c. 1700-1900. Revista de Historiografía (16) pp. 4-11. Cadair


Borsay, P. 2011. From port to resort: Tenby and narratives of transition 1760-1914. In P. Borsay., J. Walton. (eds) Resorts and Ports: European Seaside Towns since 1700. Channel View Publications pp. 86-112. Cadair

Borsay, P. 2011. Walks and promenades in London and provincial Britain in the long eighteenth century. In C. Loir., L. Turcot. (eds) La Promenade au Tournant des XVIIIe et XIXe Siêcles. Etudes sur le XVIIIe siecle Presses Universitaires de Bruxelles, Brussels pp. 79-95. Cadair

Borsay, P., Walton, J.K. 2011. Resorts and Ports: European Seaside Towns Since 1700. Channel View Publications Cadair

Borsay, P., Walton, J. 2011. Introduction: the port-resort relationship. In P. Borsay., J. K. Walton. (eds) Resorts and Ports: European Seaside Towns since 1700. Channel View Publications pp. 1-17. Cadair


Borsay, P. 2010. Londres entre 1660 et 1800: une culture specifique. In J. Carre. (ed) Londres 1700-1900: Naissance d'une capitale culturelle. Presses de l'Université Paris-Sorbonne pp. 85-110. Cadair


Borsay, P.N. 2009. Warwickshire towns in the age of Dugdale. In C. Dyer., C. Richardson. (eds) William Dugdale, Historian, 1605-1686: His Life, his Writings and His County. 1st edn, Boydell & Brewer pp. 187-208. Cadair

Borsay, P.N. 2009. Invention, Innovation and the Creative Milieu in Urban Britain. In M. Hesler., C. Zimmermann. (eds) Creative Urban Milieus: Historical Perspectives on Culture, Economy and the City. University of Chicago Press pp. 77-98. Cadair

Borsay, P. 2009. The growth of Georgian spas. In S. Wingrove. (ed) BBC History Magazine - Great Days Out. Immediate Media Company pp. 16-20. Cadair

Borsay, P. 2009. The Georgian house: the making of a heritage icon. In L. Gibson., J. Pendlebury. (eds) Valuing Historic Environments. Taylor & Francis pp. 157-177. Cadair


Borsay, P.N. 2008. Welsh Seaside Resorts: Historiography, Sources and Themes. Cylchgrawn Hanes Cymru | Welsh History Review 24 (2) pp. 92-119. Cadair

Borsay, P.N. 2008. Le Développement des Villes Balnéaires dans L'Angleterre Gérgienne. In J. Poussou., A. Lottin., Y. Perret-Gentil. (eds) Les Villes Balneaires d'Europe Occidentale du XVIIIe siècle à Nos Jours. Presses de l'Université Paris-Sorbonne pp. 13-34. Cadair

Borsay, P.N. 2008. Concert Topography and Provincial Towns in Eighteenth-Century England. In H. E. Bodeker., P. Veit., M. Werner. (eds) Espaces et lieux de concert en Europe 1700-1920: Architecture, musique, société. Berliner Wissenschafts-Verlag pp. 35-50. Cadair


Borsay, P. 2006. A History of Leisure: The British Experience Since 1500. Springer Nature Cadair Other

Borsay, P. 2006. New Approaches to Social History. Myth, Memory and Place: Monmouth and Bath 1750-1900. Journal of Social History 39 (3) pp. 867-889. 10.1353/jsh.2006.0001 Other Cadair


Borsay, P. 2005. Pouvoir et culture au sein de la métropole des Lumières: les îles britanniques 1660-1800. Histoire Urbaine 1 (12) pp. 117-144. 10.3917/rhu.012.0117 Cadair Other


Borsay, P., Proudfoot, L. 2002. Provincial Towns in Early Modern England and Ireland: Change, Convergence and Divergence. Oxford University Press Cadair Other