Svensk Gymnastik och Engelska Rosor/ Swedish Gymnastics and English Roses

In this short feature we are introduced to the work of Madame Bergman Österberg (1849-1915) the founder of the first Physical Training college in the UK.

Madame Bergman Österberg’s holistic model of teaching, involving anatomi, outdoors gymnastics and healthy food as well as a mix of sports, inspired the agenda for Physical Education Training for decades to come.

She was also an inspiring women’s rights advocate and one of the people behind the design and creation of the gymslip that came to liberate Victorian women from playing games in corsets and long dresses.

She further created a whole new profession for women as physical education instructors, giving her female students the opportunity to be financially independent.

Next year (2015) commemorates the centenary of her death.

Interviews with:

Allan Gamwell, Archivist at the Bergman Österberg Union Archive
Anne Stuart, former student of the college and current chair of the Bergman Österberg Union

Introduction in Swedish.

Image from the University of Bedfordshire.

With many thanks to Anne Stuart, Allan Gamwell and Rosemary Moon at the Bergman Österberg Union Archive.

For an English only version, please listen below:

Olive our Sister

By listening to the memories of three women we are taken on a journey to explore the life of black activist Olive Morris whilst questioning the making of history and what role power plays in the process.

My final 15 minute feature for MA Radio.

Contributors: Kelly Foster, Natalie Tomlinson and Stella Dadzie.

Poem ‘Do you Remember’ read and written by Stella Dadzie.

Music ‘Ocean Space Girls’ by Frithjof Toksvig