Our Trustees

Maria Hayward

Professor Maria Hayward is a Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Southampton. She graduated with a history degree before undertaking the post graduate diploma in textile conservation at the Textile Conservation Centre (TCC), Hampton Court Palace. After working as a conservator and completing a PhD in History at the London School of Economics, she worked at the TCC, both at Hampton Court and after it joined the University of Southampton in 1999. During this time she was Head of Studies and Research and Director of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies (2004-07). In 2004 she was elected as a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. In 2008 she transferred to History. Her publications include The 1542 Inventory of Whitehall: The Palace and Its Keeper (2004)Tapestry Conservation: Principles and Practice, edited with Frances Lennard (2005), Dress at the Court of King Henry VIII (2007), Rich Apparel: Clothing and the Law in Henry VIII’s England (2009), and The 1547 Inventory of King Henry VIII: Volume 2: Textiles and Dress, edited with Philip Ward (2012).

Wendy Hefford

Wendy Hefford, MA (Oxon), FSA, was employed at the Victoria and Albert Museum from late 1960 to 1998. Working mainly in the Department of Textiles, she became the museum’s specialist in European tapestries and carpets, printed and woven textiles, with curatorial responsibilities for care of those collections, their storage and display; for informing the public, advising arts institutions, making judicious acquisitions, contributing to exhibitions, catalogues and collaborative publications, giving lectures and papers at international conferences, undertaking and publishing original research. Aided by a two-year Leverhulme Emeritus Fellowship, official retirement provided more time for research on a book, now in preparation, concerning her particular interest: English tapestry of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Work at the V&A has brought her many good friends, among them Janet Arnold, with whom she shared delight in all aspects of theatre, and Santina Levey, friend from the 1960s and fellow executor of Janet’s estate.

Vanessa Hopkins

Vanessa Hopkins has always been interested in the clothing of the past and with her husband Alan she has amassed the extensive Hopkins Collection of dress and textiles, now used for teaching at the School. Vanessa worked in the BBC Costume department for five years, first as an assistant designer on productions such as Roads to Freedom (1970), Bel Ami (1971), Candide (1973) and The Pallisers (1974) and then as a costume designer on productions such as The Evacuees (1975), the autobiographical drama by Jack Rosenthal. She now creates reproduction period fabrics for anyone involved in making historical dress.

Susan Witherow

Susan Witherow started her early career in NYC in 1979 working as theatre manager for the Gene Frankel Theatre and School, and later producing Shakespeare plays Off off Broadway. In 1988 she was offered a job in the art world, starting with Hirschl & Adler Gallery, European paintings department, before becoming co-director of the Claude Bernard Gallery (now Michel Soskine Inc, NY and Madrid). Susan has continued to work with a group of private art clients and galleries internationally. In 2007, she formed 1001 Nights Productions Ltd to support and produce a variety of creative endeavours in art, film and theatre – 4 Broadway plays, 16 West End productions and 2 tours, including ‘Twelfth Night’ and Richard III’ (Shakespeare’s Globe, Apollo Theatre London, Belasco Theatre, NYC).