Oldham Wedlick Scholarship

Oldham Wedlick Scholarship

A grant of up to $5,000
for the further study and appreciation of the English language


Information and Application Form

Closing date: 15 December in the year of application


  About the ESU

The English-Speaking Union (Victoria Branch) (the “ESU”) was established in Melbourne in 1919. It is a non-government body, reliant on members, volunteers, supporters and donors to undertake and fund activities. Its mission is to shape the future by promoting the heritage, culture, identity and fellowship of the English-speaking peoples.

The ESU shares the outlook of Winston Churchill, former Chairman of the English-Speaking Union of the British Empire, in his A History of the English-Speaking Peoples (1956-58) in defining the English-speaking peoples as the people of the British Isles and their descendants who settled in countries such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States of America.

As a registered Australian charity, the ESU engages in and supports educational and cultural projects that relate to its mission.

  ESU Oldham Wedlick Scholarship

The ESU acts as trustee for and administers the Peb Oldham and Phyllis Wedlick Scholarship Trust, a perpetual charitable trust.

The ESU invites applications for the Oldham Wedlick Scholarship. This Scholarship comprises a grant of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000) to encourage further study and appreciation of the English language. This may include, but is not restricted to, enrolment in a formal educational course.

Topics relating to ‘further study and appreciation of the English language’ may include:

(a)  earlier forms of English (e.g. Old English, Middle English and Early Modern English) and/or contemporary English (Present Day English)

(b)  literature written in English

(c)  linguistics

What do we mean by ‘further study ... of the English language’?

  • The Scholarship CANNOT be used to fund enrolment in an undergraduate degree or diploma course that constitutes the applicant’s initial post-secondary study.
  • The Scholarship CAN be used to support post-graduate studies such as: an Honours year; a post-graduate qualification; a higher degree by research (such as a Master’s degree or a PhD).
  • The Scholarship is, however, not restricted to university graduates and academics. It is open to anyone with a background and track record that equips them for ‘further study’, including those whose initial post-secondary ‘study’ may have been undertaken independently and/or outside academic institutions. Examples may include: a writer who has published creative or documentary works in English; an independent researcher who has published works in fields relevant to the study and appreciation of the English language.

What can the Scholarship funds be used for?

  • The Scholarship can support a range of activities, including (but not limited to): enrolling in a relevant course; attending a relevant conference; travelling for relevant research; undertaking field work (such as the collection of folk songs); undertaking a relevant research project.
  • The Scholarship DOES NOT currently support the study of English as a second language.
  • The judging panel may give preference to proposals that are likely to deliver practical benefits.

One Oldham Wedlick Scholarship is offered each year. Applications close on 15 December in the year of application. Decisions will normally be advised early in the next year.

  Conditions of Entry

  1. Entry is free.
  2. Entry is open to all adult Australian citizens or permanent residents.
  3. The Oldham Wedlick Scholarship Application Form must be completed in full.
  4. Applications for retrospective funding (for expenses that have already been incurred) will be ineligible.
  5. The ESU may use relevant material provided in the application for media and promotion.
  6. By applying for this Scholarship, the applicant agrees to participate in media publicity and promotion associated with the Scholarship, including the use of photos submitted or taken at any Awards presentation ceremony.
  7. Applications close on 15 December in the year of application.
  8. The winner of a Scholarship will be requested to acknowledge the ESU’s support in any publication (print or online) arising from the Scholarship.
  9. The winner of a Scholarship will be required to provide a brief report within eighteen (18) months of being granted the Scholarship. The report must be in writing and may be supported by a video presentation. The report may be used by the ESU for public relations and future marketing purposes.
  10. 20% of the scholarship grant will be paid after the final report is accepted by the ESU.
  11. The decisions of the judging panel are final and no correspondence will be entered into.

  Application Guidelines

Applications should follow these guidelines:

  1. A separate written outline should detail the proposed study or project to be undertaken. This outline should not exceed one A4 page in length and should include the nature and duration of the proposed study or project, its aims and objectives and any methodology or research techniques (if applicable). Where relevant, important references to other publications in the field should be cited so the judging panel can relate the importance of the application to the field in general.
  2. Video presentations of no more than three (3) minutes providing a summary of the written application and relevant photographs or pictures are optional but will be accepted.
  3. A separate written CV should outline past/present studies, work experience, awards, personal and professional development activities, and career path.
  4. In all documents provided for this application, please use Arial font no smaller than 11 point.
  5. Please write precisely and concisely.
  6. The application must include a certified copy of proof of applicant’s Australian Citizenship or Permanent Residency status. (See: https://www.justice.vic.gov.au/certifiedcopies for advice on how to obtain certification of original documents.)

To assist individuals in drafting their applications, we provide HERE a Word version of the Information and Application form. Please note, however, that each application must be submitted using the online form, below.

  Judging and Process

The judging panel is appointed by the ESU Council and reserves the right to decide not to award any scholarship in any year.

A full Scholarship comprises a grant of up to five thousand ($5,000) dollars payable by electronic funds transfer. The judging panel may award multiple Scholarships of amounts less than five thousand ($5,000) dollars in any year.

The ESU will grant a successful applicant 80% of the Scholarship amount at the time of announcing the scholarship award. The residual 20% of the Scholarship amount will be paid upon acceptance by the ESU of a suitable final report.

All applicants will be offered a complimentary twelve (12) month ESU Social Membership.

Click HERE to access the Application Form
for the ESU Oldham Wedlick Scholarship


Receipt of succesfully lodged applications will be automatically acknowledged upon submission. 

All applicants will be notified of the outcome of the selection process with the winner/s featured on the ESU website.

Winner/s will be invited to attend a presentation ceremony at a date to be confirmed.

Completed applications and supporting documents must be received by the ESU
no later than 15 December in the year of application.

It is acknowledged that in administering the Bursary, the English-Speaking Union (Victoria Branch) will need to collect personal information from the applicant. The ESU is committed to protecting the privacy and confidentiality of individuals. Click HERE to read the ESU Privacy Policy.

Please note that our preferred method of correspondence is by email to awards@esuvic.org.au