The Western Front Association is pleased to announce the recipients of its annual PhD Grant Scheme. The Scheme is offered to provide research scholars the opportunity to enrich their research so that it makes a new and definitive contribution to the knowledge of the First World War.

This year’s scheme saw a series of wide-ranging topics proposed. The judging panel, made up of WFA President Professor Gary Sheffield, Universities Trustee Dr Adam Prime, fellow trustees Dr Tom Thorpe and Eve Wilson, and WFA member Dr Jenny MacLeod, once again found the adjudication process extremely difficult, the results were decided by only the finest of margins. 

Adam said: ‘As an association we should be very proud of this scheme. We are supporting fledgling academics working on social, economic, and medical aspects of the First World War, as well as topics we might be more familiar with such as commemoration and logistics. These awards are about enhancing our understanding of the 1914-18 conflict, the studies being carried out by our recipients will certainly do that.

I would like to thank all of those who took the time to enter, and to congratulate the winners. I am also grateful to my fellow judges and to the Executive Committee for their continued support of the scheme.’

The judging panel presented the following recommendations to the Executive Committee, which were subsequently approved:

Winners and recipients of £2,000 each

  • Jonathan Slater (London School of Economics) - Indigestible, Disgusting, and Vile: The Development and Regulation of Ersatz Food Products in Germany during the First World War
  • Allison Bennett (Memorial University of Newfoundland) - Undressing British and Anzac Servicemen: Masculinity, racism, and venereal disease in First World War Macedonia and the Middle East

Runners-up and recipients of £1,000 each

  • Katrina Pasierbek (Wilfrid Laurier University) - Commemorating Canadians across the Western Front, 1914-1939
  • Shelley Castle (Somerville College, University of Oxford) - The Immediate and Long-Term Military, Medical and Social effects of the Chemical Weapons used in the First World War
  • Bradley Shoebottom (University of New Brunswick) - Beans, Bullets, Bully Beef, and Bridges: Logistics and Engineer Support in the Canadian Corps on the Western Front, 1914-1918

Each recipient will, in due course, provide the WFA with publishable material that is as of a result of their award. 

The PhD Award will open again in September 2023, whilst the Masters Grant Scheme is due to launch on 6 February.