Dr Peter Maw

Lecturer in 18th Century History

Summary: Lecturer in 18th Century History


I completed my undergraduate and postgraduate studies at the University of Manchester, before being awarded a one-year ESRC Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in 2005-6. In 2007, I was appointed to a three-year English Heritage Research Fellowship at Manchester Metropolitan University as part of Manchester’s bid to attain a World Heritage Site inscription. I joined the University of Leeds in September 2013, following three years at Northumbria University.


My research concerns the northern English textile regions in the long eighteenth century, especially in terms of industry, trade, and transport. My doctoral and initial post-doctoral research focused on Yorkshire and Lancashire’s textile export trade to North America from 1750-1825 and, more recently, I have worked on the industrial and urban impacts of Manchester’s canal network before 1850. I am currently working on a project that seeks to identify and analyse all cotton-spinning mills built in England and Wales between 1770 and 1840 and on a project that looks at settlement of American and European merchants in Manchester and Leeds from the late eighteenth century.


Transport and the industrial city: Manchester and the Canal Age, 1750-1850 (Manchester University Press, 2013). 

  Maw Transport and the Industrial City book

‘Manchester: Canals and the development of the city during the industrial revolution’ in T. Tvedt and T. Oestigaard (eds.) A History of Water, Series 3, Vol. 1. From Jericho to Cities in the Seas: A History of Urbanization and Water Systems (London: I.B. Taurus, 2014), pp. 431-49.

‘Canals, rivers, and the industrial city: Manchester’s industrial waterfront, 1790-1850’, The Economic History Review, Vol. 65, No. 4 (2012), pp. 1495-1523. (with Terry Wyke and Alan Kidd).

‘Yorkshire and Lancashire ascendant: England’s textile exports to Philadelphia and New York, 1750-1805’, The Economic History Review, Vol. 63, No. 3 (2010), pp. 734-68. 

‘Water transport in the industrial age: Commodities and carriers on the Rochdale Canal, 1804-1855 ’, The Journal of Transport History, Vol. 30 (2009), pp.  200-28 (with Terry Wyke and Alan Kidd).

‘Warehouses, wharves, and transport Infrastructure in Manchester during the first industrial revolution: The Rochdale Canal Company’s Piccadilly Basin, 1792-1856’, The Industrial Archaeology Review, Vol. 31, no. 1 (May 2009), pp. 20-33. (with Terry Wyke and Alan Kidd).


Peter contributes to learning and teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. He currently teaches on the following courses:

HIST1210: The Modern World, 1750-2000

HIST2125: Britain and the Atlantic World

HIST2135: Britain and the Industrial Revolution 

HIST2557: Thinking About History

HIST3315: Citizens of the World: British merchants in the long eighteenth century

HIST5000M: Research Methodology in History

HIST5838M: Approaches to Race

HIST5850M: Concepts and Debates in Social and Cultural History

HIST5860M: Britain and the Slave Trade

Postgraduate supervision

Peter would welcome enquiries from potential MA and PhD students with interests in any aspect of British and Atlantic economic and social history in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.