Nicola here, fresh back from this year’s UK Romantic Novelists’ Association Conference. I love the RNA’s annual conference and this one, held in London, was very popular, very successful and a wonderful way of meeting new writing friends and catching up with old ones.
In conference terms the RNA Is fairly small and this year we were staying at Queen Mary University, situated in the east end of London. QMU as it is known has roots stretching back to the founding of the London Hospital Medical College in 1785. In more recent times it was merged with the university college that I attended, Westfield, and with two of the London medical schools. It is one of the top universities in the UK and was named after Queen Mary of Teck, wife of George V although some of the university buildings date from the Victorian period. This is because the site was originally called “The People’s Palace” a philanthropic centre built in 1887 to give the people of the East end of London educational, social and cultural activities. The Octagon Library (pictured below) where we had our conference Gala Dinner, was once the library of the People’s Palace.