We are saddened to announce the passing of Anthea Trodd
Anthea Trodd, then Head of Department of English at Keele, 1997 (photograph by Amy Celino-Potter)
The University is sad to report the passing of Anthea Trodd, who began as a lecturer in English at Keele on 1st April 1964 and retired on 30th September 2005, as Senior Lecturer in English. She became Senior Lecturer in 1994 and served as Head of Department for English twice, in the 1990s and early 2000s. She also was director of the University’s Victorian Studies Centre in the 1990s. She was appointed to four terms as an honorary research fellow of the University between 2005-17. Anthea was held in high and warm esteem by those who had the privilege to work with her as colleagues and graduate students.
A popular lecturer at Keele, her colleagues and former students describe her as generous with her gifts as an academic and teacher, kind, funny and encouraging, with an encyclopaedic knowledge of literature and history, and someone who instilled confidence and interest in generations of students. She was a distinguished Victorian Studies scholar, well-known for her expertise in Victorian and Edwardian literature. Her research focus included issues affecting women, domestic crime and its implications, and the lives and works of Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens. Her best-known books, all published while she was at Keele, include the Oxford World's Classics edition of Wilkie Collins’ The Moonstone (1982), Domestic Crime in the Victorian Novel (1989), A Reader's Guide to Edwardian Literature (1991) and Women’s Writing in English: Britain 1900-45 (1998).
Anthea Trodd, then a new lecturer at Keele, 1966 (photograph by Geoff Trodd)
Anthea was born in 1940 in Withycombe Raleigh, Exmouth, in Devon, where her mother was staying with an aunt during the Blitz. Upon returning to London, Anthea grew up in Canon's Park, Stanmore, and then in Weymouth, Poole and Portland, on the Dorset coast. She was the eldest of four children born to Norman Trodd and Eunice (Mollie) Trodd (née Potter). In 1962 she received her BA degree in English from Bedford College for Women (which later merged into Royal Holloway), including the top First-Class marks in English across the whole University of London. She was awarded her postgraduate degree in English from Bedford College / Royal Holloway in 1964, after completing her thesis on Thackeray and Bulwer.
She met her husband, John Proops, at Keele in 1972. John was Professor of Ecological Economics at the University until his own retirement. Anthea and John were together for 50 years, including time living in a flat on Keele’s campus. After their retirement, they continued living in their 17th-century cottage in the countryside near Bishop’s Offley, a 30-minute drive from Keele’s campus and their home since 1984. Their extensive travel since retirement included trips to Venice, Canada, Florida, the Brecon Beacons, and the North-West Highlands. Anthea continued to read widely and extensively across British literature and beyond.
Anthea was diagnosed with cancer in 2022. John was with her when she passed away on Saturday 17th December. She is survived by John, her sister Felicity, her brother Geoff, her nieces and nephews Amy, Zoe, Gabriel, Beatrice, Hereward and Hannah, and great-nieces and great-nephews.
The family’s chosen charity for donations in Anthea's memory is Katharine House Hospice, Stafford.
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