Warrington and the Slave Trade

Warrington and the Slave Trade Warrington’s role in the slave trade is the elephant in the room which has been avoided by most historians. The talk will explore the nature and range of the trade in slaves by citizens of Warrington. The level of involvement of the main players will be discussed, as will the role played by the Warrington Academy. Some thoughts as to an appropriate response will be offered.

 Bill Cooke President’s Address
 07/10/2019, 7:30PM


Are We (Just) Beasts?

It is often assumed by humanist thinkers that, if we are not supernatural beings, we must be parts of nature. Raymond will argue, against popular misreading of the significance of brain science and evolutionary theory, that persons are not merely organisms to be understood in biological terms, and that there is a huge gap between humans and our nearest primate kin.

 Raymond Tallis Philosopher Poet Author
 04/11/2019, 7:30PM


The Black Prince and the Capture of a King: Poitiers, 1356

Less well-known than Agincourt or Crecy, the Battle of Poitiers in 1356 was one of the most hard-fought and dramatic battles of the Hundred Years War. This talk will tell the story of that remarkable day of battle and the events leading up to it, beginning with the Battle of Crecy ten years earlier.

 AJ MacKenzie Anglo-Canadian Authors
 02/12/2019, 7:30PM


Gladstone’s Library: A History of the Collections

Gladstone’s Library is a unique institution holding remarkable collections. Hear the story of how our four-times Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone established the library in the 1890s, and learn not only about the history of the library, but what makes rare books so rare, and special collections so special.

 Gary Butler Assistant Librarian, Gladstone Library
 03/02/2020, 7:30PM


The Wordsworths at Dove Cottage

Melissa will introduce William Wordsworth, his sister Dorothy, and their life at Dove Cottage in Grasmere, where they lived from 1799-1808. It was here that Wordsworth wrote a great deal of his best-loved poetry, and where Dorothy kept her famous Grasmere journal. Through studying their own manuscripts, we’ll explore the lives of this remarkable family, and how some of the UKs greatest literature came to be, in the year of Wordsworth’s 250th birthday.

 Melissa Mitchell Assistant Curator, The Wordsworth Trust
 02/03/2020, 7:30PM


Antiquarians, Artists and the Archbishop: The discovery and destruction of the wall paintings of Pickering Church

In 1852 a scheme of remarkable wall paintings was uncovered on the nave walls of Pickering church. However, for the incumbent, the Revd John Ponsonby, the paintings were dangerous reminders of the Catholic past. Despite explicit instructions from the Archbishop of York to preserve the paintings, he attempted to destroy them. This talk uses Pickering as a lens through which attitudes to medieval art can be understood and inform future approaches to conservation and interpretation.

 Dr Kate Giles Buildings Archaeologist, University of York
 06/04/2020, 7:30PM