Dr Bethan Bide

Dr Bethan Bide


I have an interdisciplinary academic background that encompasses cultural geography, design history and English literature. I particularly work in the fields of textile and fashion history and in 2023 I was appointed as the Director of the Pasold Research Fund, a charitable organisation that supports the study of textile history. In 2017 I completed an AHRC CDA funded PhD with the Museum of London entiled ‘Austerity fashion: rebuilding London fashion after the Second World War, 1945–1951.’ Prior to this I worked as a producer and production co-ordinator, making comedy programs for BBC Radio and comedy theatre tours.


  • Deputy Director of Student Education, School of Design
  • Director of the Pasold Research Fund

Research interests

My research centres around the cultural, social and business histories of fashion. It focuses on material objects and explores how these can reveal historic relationships between production and consumption, the development of fashion cities and the relationship between materiality, memory and fashion as biography. 

Much of my research considers the role that fashion plays in museums and I have collaborated extensively with museum curators to produce exhibitions and public and educational online content. I am particularly interested in researching the histories of ‘everyday’ fashion in museum collections and the stories that are told about these non-spectacular clothes.I worked with curators at Leeds Museums and Galleries on the 2023 ‘Cotton Connections’ exhibition at Lotherton Hall as part of the AHRC funded ‘Cottons Hidden Voices’ project and was the academic advisor to ‘Fashion City: How Jewish Londoners shaped global style’ at the Museum of London (October 2023–April 2024). 

My other research specialisms include the intersection between geography and the creative industries and I have written about the historical development of fashion cities and the relationship between fashion and space in London in the 1940s. I also research design for performance and in spring 2019 I was a research fellow at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, Austin, where I worked on a project about historic film and theatre costume design. 

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education, Middlesex University
  • PhD in Fashion History, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • MA in Fashion Cultures, London College of Fashion, UAL
  • BA (hons) in English, University of Cambridge

Student education

I teach design history, cultural studies and research methods to students across the School of Design. I also supervise research projects related to my areas of expertise.

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>