Centre for Studies in Literature


Ms Katharine Brombley

  • Qualifications: BA English Literature (Reading University), MA Nineteenth Century Literature (Cardiff University)
  • Role Title: PhD Student
  • Address: Milldam, Burnaby Road, Portsmouth, Hants PO1 3AS
  • Telephone: 023 9284 6033
  • Email: katharine.brombley@port.ac.uk
  • Department: School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies
  • Faculty: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences


My research background has predominantly been concentrated on the Nineteenth Century, with especial consideration for the Gothic and gender studies using a socio-historical view of literary theory.

This PhD is centred on Arthur Conan Doyle as the creator of Sherlockian fandom. I am exploring the idea of fandom and how the Victorian’s obsession with crime sparked an entire genre of detective fiction, and how, in turn, people became obsessed with Sherlock Holmes. I will explore why this was; why Arthur Conan Doyle’s other fiction did not create the same kind of following, and in what ways fandom is manifested. To do this I am using the Lancelyn Green Collection in the Portsmouth City library as a basis for my research. This is a collection of Arthur Conan Doyle-related memorabilia, photos, manuscripts, etc. given to the library by Richard Lancelyn Green, whom I will research as a case study for fandom.

In addition to this I am working alongside Portsmouth City Council to raise the profile of the collection and aim to use the research to encourage an increased literacy interest in the local area.


  • Nineteenth century fiction;
  • Detective fiction;
  • Victorian fiction;
  • the Gothic and Sensation novel;
  • Archival research