Dr Suzannah Lipscomb

MA, MSt, DPhil (Oxon), FRHistS
Head of Faculty and Senior Lecturer in Early Modern History

Suzannah is Head of Faculty and Senior Lecturer for the History BA at New College of the Humanities. She is an historian, author, broadcaster and award-winning academic. She has a double first in BA History and a distinction in her MSt in Historical Research from Lincoln College, Oxford and DPhil in History from Balliol College, Oxford, where she was a Jowett Senior Scholar. Her previous positions include Royal Historical Society Marshall Research Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research, Research Curator at Hampton Court Palace and Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of East Anglia. Suzannah's books include 1536: The Year that Changed Henry VIII (2009) and A Visitor's Companion to Tudor England (2012).

Suzannah teaches for the BA(Hons) History at NCH in London, where you can experience one-to-one tutorials from world-class academics, and our unique, liberal arts-based curriculum.

Suzannah often lectures on our university taster days, and visits schools as part of our outreach programme. If you'd like Suzannah to visit your school, please let us know!

NCH was awarded “Best Course and Lecturers” at the prestigious WhatUni? Student Choice Awards 2105, and ranked 4th overall in the “Best University” category, higher than any Russell Group university.

Modules Taught


Suzannah has published on Henry VIII; the Tudor court; gender, patriarchy and sexuality in early modern England and Europe, and heritage and public history. Suzannah is currently writing a book on the last will and testament of Henry VIII.



  • Henry VIII and the Court: Art, Politics and Performance, editor with Thomas Betteridge (Ashgate, 2013) ISBN: 9781409411857
  • A Visitor’s Companion to Tudor England (London: Ebury, 2012) ISBN: 9780091944841
  • 1536:  The Year that Changed Henry VIII (Oxford: Lion Hudson, 2009) ISBN: 9780745953656
  • Henry VIII: 500 Facts with Brett Dolman, Lee Prosser, David Souden and Lucy Worsley (Historic  Royal Palaces, 2009) ISBN: 9781873993125


Chapters in books

  • The fall of Anne Boleyn: a crisis in gender relations at the Tudor court?’ in Henry VIII and the Court: Art, Politics and Performance ed. Suzannah Lipscomb and Thomas Betteridge (Ashgate, 2013). ISBN: 9781409411857
  • Refractory women: the limits of power in the French Reformed church’ in Dire l’interdit: The Vocabulary of Censure and Exclusion in the Early Modern Reformed Tradition ed. Raymond A Mentzer, Philippe Chareyre and Françoise Moreil (Brill, Series in Church History, 2010), pp. 13‐28. ISBN: 9789004179226


Journal articles

  • Crossing boundaries: women’s gossip, insults and violence in sixteenth-century France’, French History  25.4 (December 2011), 408-426 – winner of the SCSC Nancy Lyman Roelker Prize 2012
  • Historical authenticity and interpretative strategy at Hampton Court Palace’, The Public Historian: ‘Public History and Professional Practice in the United Kingdom 32.3 (2010), 98-119
  • Subjection and companionship: the French Reformed marriage’, Reformation and Renaissance Review 6.3 (2004), 349-360


Recent newspaper and magazine articles

  • 'A Matter of Judgement', Column, History Today (June 2014)
  • Game of Thrones: Does Fantasy Fiction Beat Period Drama?’, Column, History Today (April 2014)
  • Practice Makes Perfect’, Column, History Today (January 2014)
  • Why did Anne Boleyn have to die?’, BBC History Magazine (April 2013)    
  • Booker Prize 2012: Mantel’s tale drips with the often putrid scents of the Tudor age’, The Daily Telegraph (17 October 2012)
  • Table talk: Dr Suzannah Lipscomb chooses six dream dinner companions from the past’, The Daily Telegraph, 10 March 2012
  • Where history happened: Tudor courtiers’, BBC History Magazine (March  2012), 86-91
  • All the King’s fools’, History Today 61.8 (August 2011)


Nancy Lyman Roelker Prize, awarded by the Sixteenth Century Society 2012

Museums Association Museums + Heritage Award for Excellence in Education 2012 - for 'All the King's Fools', funded by the Wellcome Trust, in association with the Misfits, Foolscap Productions, Historic Royal Palaces, Past Pleasures, UEA and Oxford Brookes University

Wellcome Trust People Award (for £28,000) 2011 - for All the King's Fools: Rethinking Learning Disability at Hampton Court Palace

Arts and Humanities Research Council Knowledge Transfer Partnership Award: 'Humanities for the Creative Economy', 2011 - in association with Historic Royal Palaces and Kingston University


Suzannah's most recent TV programmes are Henry and Anne: The Lovers That Changed History, a two-part series for Channel Five (aired February-March 2014), that she wrote and presented; I Never Knew that About Britain, an eight-part series for ITV (aired March-April 2014), and New Hidden Killers of the Victorian Home and Hidden Killers of the Edwardian Home, a two-part series for BBC 4 that Suzannah wrote and presented, and which aired in December 2013. Previously, Suzannah wrote and presented the first Hidden Killers of the Victorian Home (also for BBC4, which aired in April 2013) and co-presented, with Joe Crowley, Bloody Tales of the Tower and Bloody Tales of Europe (three and six parts, respectively) for National Geographic Channel.

Her other TV work includes being a guest presenter on The Book Show (Sky Arts), Secret Life Of… (Yesterday, UK; History, Canada) and Inside the World of Henry VIII (History, UK), and appearances on The One Show (BBC 1), BBC Breakfast (BBC 1), Newsnight (BBC 2), The Wright Stuff (Channel 5), The Last Days of Anne Boleyn (BBC 2), Museum Secrets (Yesterday, UK; History, Canada), The Great British Weather Show (BBC 1), Sky News, BBC News, ITV London etc. She regularly appeared as the resident historian on Time Team's Season 20 (Channel 4, 2013). As a royal historian, she commentated live from a studio at Buckingham Palace on the Royal Wedding for CTV, and on the birth of HRH Prince George of Cambridge for BBC News, BBC World, NBS, Sky News, LBC and BBC Radio 5 Live. 

Her radio work includes presenting BBC Radio 3's The Essay, presenter's friend on BBC Radio 5 Live and LBC, and appearances on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Front Row, Making History, as well the Six O'Clock News on BBC Radio 4, NPR and many local radio stations. 


Fellow of the Royal Historical Society

Consultant to Historic Royal Palaces and External Advisory Member on Historic Royal Palaces's Research Strategy Board

Editorial Board, History: Journal of the Historical Association

Director, Trustee and Governor of Epsom College

Languages Spoken

English, French, rather rusty Hindi

Other members of the History faculty

You can still apply for 2015 entry!

You can apply directly to New College of the Humanities now, in addition to your five UCAS choices, to start your degree this September. Your first step is to complete and submit our application form online.

Our Admissions Advisers are happy to talk to you informally before you apply. This is not part of the selection process, so feel free to call +44 (0) 207 637 4550 for a chat or email info@NCHum.org with any questions.