Margaret Bird, the editor and author

Editor and author of the Mary Hardy volumes, Margaret Bird has been an honorary research fellow in the History department of Royal Holloway, University of London since 2006. She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society in 2016 in recognition of her contribution to historical scholarship.

Born in central London in 1946, she read Modern History at St Anne’s College, Oxford and gained her master’s degree in Modern History at Royal Holloway. For both degrees she specialised in aspects of English history in the eighteenth century.

Margaret Bird (2012)

Margaret Bird giving the 2012 Georgian Lecture to the Holt Society

She has lived in Kingston upon Thames in Surrey since 1970 and was a partner with her husband Tony in the economic consultancy they founded and ran for 22 years.

She has a deep love of the landscape and waterways of the Norfolk Broads in eastern England. All her life she has spent as much time as possible on the family boat, at first with her parents, later with her husband and three sons and, in recent years, the new boating generation.

An interview on the editorial process

On 11 June 2013 Margaret Bird gave an interview to an American blogger, Kelly McDonald of Vermont. Kelly had recently purchased the four-volume set of The Diary of Mary Hardy, and had posted a video of her reaction to the books on YouTube.

In the interview Margaret talks about her 25-year research and editing task (as it was at that time). Kelly also invited her to reflect on the process of tackling such matters as the unusual page layout and keeping up with changes in computer technology.

The full interview is on one of Kelly McDonald’s websites, Two Teens in the Time of Austen.