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GNE-History

Wanneer was GNE opgericht?

GNE (het Genootschap Nederland-Engeland)  is op 24 april 1920 is  opgericht met als doel de vriendschapsbetrekkingen tussen Nederland en het Britse Rijk te versterken. In een aantal steden kwam een afdeling. Veel Engelse sprekers werden uitgenodigd om lezingen te houden.

Geschiedenis van GNE

Al binnen een paar maanden na de bezetting in 1940 is de organisatie verboden. Het archief en de financiële bezittingen van het hoofdbestuur en een aantal afdelingen zijn door de Duitsers in 1940 in beslag genomen. Mr. F.C. Stähle uit Voorburg trad namens de bezetter op als liquidator van het Genootschap. Het in beslag genomen geld was bestemd voor de Vermögensverwaltungs- und Renten-Anstalt (VVRA). De Haagse afdeling was de heer Stähle te slim af geweest en had in juli 1940 alle gelden aan het Nederlandse Rode kruis gegeven. 1945 verhuisde de Russen al het materiaal naar Rusland. Gelukkig is het Nederlandse Instituut voor Oorlogsdocumentatie in 2009 in staat gebleken om een deel van het in beslag genomen materiaal uit de Russische archieven terug te krijgen. Het materiaal geeft een goed inzicht in de aard van de personen, professionals en zakenmensen die lid waren vóór de Tweede Wereldoorlog. Het is echter niet helemaal duidelijk wat de motieven waren voor het oprichten van GNE. Vóór 1914 had Nederland sterke banden met Duitsland en de Boerenoorlog had ernstige negatieve gevolgen voor de betrekkingen met Engeland. Na 1918 verloor Duitsland de sympathie die het voor de oorlog had. De Duitse politiek en economische onrust in Duitsland was misschien een extra reden zich te wenden tot overwinnaar England. Politici en zakenlieden hebben daarom waarschijnlijk het Genootschap op 24 april 1920 opgericht als een reactie op Wereldoorlog I, en het is waarschijnlijk dat ze dachten dat het opportuun was om de betrekkingen met Engeland te versterken vanuit economisch oogpunt. De echte geschiedenis van GNE is daardoor moeilijk in detail weer te geven.

GNE direct na de Tweede Wereldoorlog

Het Genootschap is in 1946 samengevoegd met de `Engelse Associatie in Holland’. Deze vereniging bestond uit een groot aantal van het Engels clubs die al vóór de Eerste Wereldoorlog bestonden. Hun voornaamste doel was om Engels Literatuur en cultuur meer bekendheid in Nederland te maken.

Bekende voorzitters van GNE

Voor en na de Tweede Wereldoorlog, had GNE politici, ministers en premiers als nationaal voorzitter. Na de Tweede Wereldoorlog hadden we een minister-president voor een periode van 15 jaar, en twee CEO’s van beursgenoteerde ondernemingen, samen voor een ononderbroken periode van 9 jaar, als onze Nationale Voorzitter. Namelijk:
1. Prof. Gerbrandy, minister-president in de Nederlandse oorlog kabinet.
2. Dr. Paul Rijkens, voorzitter van de raad van bestuur van Unilever.
3. De heer JH Loudon, voorzitter van de raad van Koninklijke Nederlandse Shell.
 

Door GNE geïnitieerde en georganiseerde grote tentoonstellingen

Te noemen zijn hier de 1970 tentoonstelling, getiteld "schok van herkenning" en de 1995 tentoonstelling, getiteld "Gezichten op Windsor". Deze tentoonstellingen werden gehouden in het Mauritshuis in Den Haag, de Tate Gallery in Londen en het Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Ze werden allemaal geopend op naam van GNE door personen van koninklijke huize. Een ander voorbeeld is dat GNE de (BBC) Antiek Roadshow naar Amsterdam heeft gekregen.


 

When was GNE Founded?

The GNE was founded in 1920 in the period after World War I, when Duch industrialists and politicians were particularly keen to strengthen ties with Great Britain.
 

History of GNE

The real history of GNE is difficult to tell. This being because the Germans confiscated files, correspondence and money from most GNE branches soon after they had occupied The Netherlands. Everything was taken to Berlin and in 1945 the Russians moved all material to Russia. Luckily the Netherlands State Institute for War Documentation has been able to regain some of the confiscated material from the Russian archives in 2009. The material gives a good insight in the type of person, professional and businessmen that were members before the Second World War.

It is not quite clear what the motives were to found GNE. Before 1914 Holland had strong bonds with Germany and the Boer War had had a serious negative effect on the relations with England. After 1918 all that was changed. Germany lost the sympathy that it had had before the war, and the state of political and economic unrest in Germany was perhaps an added reason to turn to victorious England. Politicians and businessmen therefore probably founded The Genootschap on the 24th April 1920 as a reaction to World War 1, and it is likely that they thought it expedient to strengthen relations with England from an economic point of view.
 

History of GNE since the Second World War

The Genootschap amalgamated in 1946 with the ‘English Association in Holland’. This association consisted of a large number of English clubs, which already existed before World War I. Their main objective was to make English Literature and culture more widely known in Holland.

Well known presidents of GNE

Before and after the Second World War, GNE had politicians, ministers and prime-ministers as National President. After the Second World War we had one prime minister for a period of 15 years, and two Chief Excecutive Officers, together for a continuous period of 9 years, as our National president.
They were:
1. Prof. Gerbrandy, prime minister in the Dutch war cabinet.
2. Dr. Paul Rijkens, President of the Board of Unilever.
3. Mr. J.H. Loudon, President of the Board of Royal Dutch Shell.

Major exhibitions that GNE initiated and organized

The 1970 Exhibition, entitled "Shock of Recognition" and the 1995 Exhibition, entitled “Views of Windsor”. These Exhibitions were held at the Mauritshuis in The Hague, the Tate Gallery in London and the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. They were all opened on behalf of GNE by royals. Another example is that GNE got the (BBC) Antiques Roadshow to Amsterdam.

Read the following introduction from Sir David Miers KBE CMG (then British Ambassador to the Netherlands) on a book about GNE (1920-1995).

`In this 75th anniversary year of the Genootschap, it is with particular pleasure that I welcome this fascinating work on its history. The author (ir. M. Hugenholtz MBE) is to be congratulated on his accomplishment. He has been thwarted by the absence of so many earlier records, assumed to be in Russia and not immediately retrievable. But Martin Hugenholtz has produced with much patience and good humour a vivid picture of the Society`s past built up from the material available to him, supported by Tom Landheer`s valuable contribution on its present-day activity. I am sure that all readers, both Genootschap members and potential members, will find it as compelling a read as I have. I note well that in earlier times the British Ambassador was not patron of the Genootschap. Since my arrival at The Hague, I have valued both the work of the Genootschap in Netherlands-British relations and the friendship of so many of its members in all parts of the country. I wish the GNE a healthy future, admiring its vision for a strengthened and broadened membership and activities towards its l00th birthday in 2020`.


De aan GNE uitgereikte Koninklijke erepenning:


 

 

 
events

During the GNE lecture season, events are regularly held and talks are given about once a month and unless otherwise stated, these are delivered in English. The visiting speakers are all experts in their chosen fields and their lectures are both informative and entertaining. They may feature different aspects of British life, arts and culture, places and people. Occasionally we are also treated to a traveller`s tale. Wherever possible, lectures are illustrated.
An overview of this year`s programme is given below. For more details on our events and talks please click events & talks. For the full programme with dates, venues and entry fees per branch, please click branches.

 
Geen:

Slotfestijn GNE

Op zaterdag 20 juni a.s. luiden we met zijn allen het GNE uit tijdens het Slotfestijn ter afsluiting van 95 jaar GNE. (Oud-)GNE-leden en (oud-)afdelingsbestuurs- en (oud-)HB-leden nodigen wij hierbij van harte uit.
Het evenement zal plaatsvinden bij het historische Slot Zuylen in Oud-Zuilen vlakbij Utrecht ( http://www.slotzuylen.nl ). De connectie met Groot Brittannië ligt in de persoon van Belle van Zuylen. Zij was bevriend met James Boswell toen die in Utrecht studeerde in de 18e eeuw.

Download hier de volledige informatie leaflet-slotfeest.

Slotfestijn GNEMore information...
 
John Cameron Webb:

On 27th September John Cameron-Webb and Gerard Sprenger will be conducting a guided tour of the Market Garden battlefield and on 28th touring the border area of Germany looking at the Rhine Crossing battle of Feb-March 1944 Operation Veritable.  The tour will finish at the National War Museum in Overloon, near Venray.
Gerard Sprenger: Former history teacher; avid WWII historian and Dutch Grenadier Guardsman.
John Cameron-Webb: Battlefield guide mainly focussing on WWI, but has conducted Market Garden with Gerard in the past and Waterloo tours. John has organized already four successful trips for GNE and CADS members about WWI and WWII:
• Amsterdam: `War walk` (2011, with Gerard Sprenger);
• Ieper: (2011);
• Albert (France): `Somme Battlefields` (2012);
• Arnhem: Battlefield Tour `Market-Garden` (2013).

Operation Market Garden and Operation Veritable Battlefield More information...
 
Julian Paren:

Julian Paren is a physicist by training with a PhD in glaciology awarded by the University of Cambridge for research on the electrical properties of ice carried out at the Scott Polar Research Institute. After a spell as Nuffield Senior Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham he joined the British Antarctic Survey in 1976 and made nine visits to Antarctica. In his later years at BAS he was Director’s Assistant and Head of Information and Archives. Throughout his time at BAS and in retirement he ran adult-education courses for the University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning.

The Geograph Project, the Black Isle and eastern ScotlandMore information...
A Life of Visiting High LatitudesMore information...
 
Martin Papworth:

Martin Papworth specializes in the history and archaeology of the Dorset Iron Age and has written a book on the local tribe known as the Durotriges. He has worked for the NT for 27 years and has been involved in a range of archaeological projects. Martin carried out work at the great Avebury Henge and discovered buried megaliths and was also involved in the Stonehenge Riverside Project which worked out a new chronology for the Neolithic and Bronze Age landscape. Most recently he has been involved in uncovering mosaics at Chedworth Roman Villa after a new cover building was designed and erected over the West Range of the Villa.

Chedworth Roman VillaMore information...
Stonehenge Riverside ProjectMore information...
 
Dr Paul Franssen:

Paul Franssen has been teaching British and South African Literature at the University of Utrecht since 1979. His expertise on the Renaisance is accompanied by his interest in some more modern areas and people, such as British 20th century drama. Jane Austen, J. M. Coetzee and Oacar Wilde.

Jane Austen and the Modern WorldMore information...
 
John Pilkington:

John Pilkington has been called “one of Britain’s greatest tellers of travellers’ tales”.
In 1983, after journeys in Africa and Latin America, he completed a 500-mile solo crossing of the western Nepal Himalaya, and told the story in his first book, Into Thin Air. His interest in Asia grew further with the opening in 1986 of the border between Pakistan and China, making it possible – for the first time in forty years – to retrace virtually the whole of the Silk Road. John was one of the first modern travellers to do so, and he wrote about the journey in An Adventure on the Old Silk Road. This was followed in 1991 by An Englishman in Patagonia; recounting eight months spent exploring the southernmost tip of South America.
In 2000 he became one of only four people in modern times to walk the 1,600-mile Royal Road of the Incas in the Andes of Ecuador and Peru. In 2003 he explored the Mekong River and, with two Tibetans, reached and mapped its source at over 17,000 feet. In 2006 he turned his attention to the Sahara Desert, and joined a camel caravan carrying salt for 450 miles from the mines of Taoudenni to Timbuktu.

A Balkan AdventureMore information...
 
Christine Sinninghe Damste:

Op mijn 13e mocht ik mee naar een lezing over de geschiedenis van speelgoed door Petra Wassenberg-Clarijs, destijds directeur van het speelgoedmuseum in Deventer. De vlam sloeg over, want sindsdien verzamel ik niet alleen speelgoed en spelletjes, maar ook kinderprentenboeken uit de 19e en begin 20e eeuw.
Mijn collectie inspireert mij onderzoek te doen naar de historische en pedagogische achtergrond van spel en speelgoed. Hierover vertel ik u graag tijdens een van mijn lezingen.
In de loop der jaren werkte ik mee aan verschillende speelgoedtentoonstellingen en verzorgde ik naast lezingen ook publicaties op het gebied van kinderspeelgoed en kinderboeken.

 

Little George and his English GovernessMore information...
 
John McAleer:

John McAleer is Lecturer in History at the University of Southampton and historian of the British Empire. His work focuses on the British encounter and engagement with the wider world in the 18th and 19th centuries, situating the history of empire in its global and maritime contexts.
He is interested in the relationships, interactions and patterns of exchange created by the British Empire, and in assessing the impact of these experiences on both British and colonial societies. Previously, as Curator of Imperial and Maritime History at the National Maritime Museum, he worked on the development and delivery of gallery projects, focusing on Atlantic and Indian Ocean history. 

British views of the Victoria Falls in the nineteenth centuryMore information...
 
John Sutton:

JOHN SUTTON was a Senior Lecturer in History at Anglia Polytechnic University. He specialises in the history of Early Modern England and the English Renaissance (1558-1640), the English Civil War and the Jacobite cause. In 1983-84 he made a television series on Eastern England in the 1640s, entitled ‘A War in the Kingdom’ which was screened on Anglia TV. He regularly hosts special interest gatherings on a wide range of historical subjects. He has previously talked to the GNE branches on topics such as Sir Philip Sidney, Sir Walter Raleigh, Charles I and Elizabeth I. His last GNE lecture tour was in October 2009 when he spoke on `Rob Roy - hero or villain`.

By the Sword DividedMore information...
A Dutch King and an English PalaceMore information...
Mistress to the King? Jane Whorwood and Charles IMore information...
 
Dr Adam White:

Dr. Adam White is curator at Lotherton Hall, a country house museum between Leeds and York. He also has a research interest in the architecture and sculpture of the early 17th century in Britain when ties between England and the Netherlands were particularly close. Dr. Adam White will give a talk about the life and work of Nicholas Stone the Elder (1586/7-1647) who was the leading English mason-sculptor in the period c.1620-42. Stone the Elder was a pupil of Hendrick de Keyser, master mason to the City of Amsterdam and a leading Dutch sculptor of his time, and he married de Keyser`s daughter Mayken (Mary). Dr. Adam White has written several articles on Stone and he features largely in the Biographical Dictionary of London Tomb Sculptors c.1560-1660 which he published with the Walpole Society in London in 1999 (with supplement 2009).

The life and work of Nicholas Stone the ElderMore information...
 
Prof. dr A.J. (Arthur) van Essen:

Arthur van Essen taught English in Dutch secondary schools, and from 1971 was lecturer, then senior lecturer, and finally full professor of Applied Linguistics and Language Pedagogy in the University of Groningen. He became professor emeritus in 2003. He has lectured extensively throughout Europe, Africa and America, often on missions for the British Council. One of his chief interests is the teaching of English to speakers of other languages.

Teaching English to the poorest of the poor in North-Eastern IndiaMore information...