BCNT  Lectures Programme  2018

February 13th 2018 - "Chartwell and the Churchills"

Dr Kathleen McCarthy was a volunteer at Chartwell until recently. She will briefly explore the interesting history of Chartwell before going on to look at how Winston Churchill fell in love with the house, bought it, and made his unique mark on it. Churchill family life then revolved around Chartwell; we will think about what the house and its contents have to tell us about their life there.

March 20th 2018 - Cancelled Owing To Bad Weather

April 10th 2018 - "The Offa's Dyke Path; South to North"

A talk by Alastair Chalmers. In 2007/9 he walked the length of the path in stages, weaving back and forth across the invisible border between England and Wales. The route passes through magnificent and varied scenery, full of history and interest. His talk is illustrated with photographs taken en route of the countryside, its buildings and plants.

May 8th 2018 - AGM

After the AGM there will be a talk "The Trials and Tribulations of Working in Africa" by Jenny Bowen, Director of Sense Africa. She runs a business that creates tailor-made holidays to southern Africa. Her business has been running for 11 years and even today she is amazed at how things work, or don’t, in the countries she operates in. Jenny will go through her highs and lows of operating in Africa with amusing and anecdotal stories including being chased by a hippo which she was trying to feed.

June 12th 2018 - "Walking Hadrian's Wall"

Ian Williamson will give us an illustrated talk about his five day walk along the 84 miles of Hadrian's Wall from Wall's End, Newcastle to Bowness.

July 10th 2018 - "The British Honours System"

This presentation by Ashley Jones, takes the audience on a journey through the British Honours System, including some of the lesser known awards and stories of some worthy recipients. He will explain how to nominate someone for an award, how the selection process works and what to expect if a letter suddenly drops on your doormat from the Cabinet Office.

August 14th 2018 - "Swindon, Wiltshire & the Suffragettes"

2018 is the 100th anniversary of votes for propertied women over 30 years of age. Author Lucienne Boyce will tell us about the local suffragette movement.

September 11th 2018 - "Brunel's Ships"

Commander Philip Unwin RN will tell us about Brunel's three ships, the Great Western, Great Britain and Great Eastern. After dealing relatively briefly with the first two ships, he will cover the construction and life of Brunel’s leviathan, the Great Eastern, and her management and mismanagement, in more detail.

October 9th 2018 - "18th Century Shell House and Grotto Decoration in Bath and the West Country"

Dr. Gerald Hull and his wife Margaret will explore the impact of the Grand Tour on 18th century landscape design and, in particular, the developing role of women in shell house and grotto design in the south west, including examples from the Bristol and Bath areas.

November 13th 2018 - "The Grand Tour"

Bernard Merrick's talk "The Grand Tour" will inform us of what rich teenagers were doing in the 1700's and 1800's when they were sent abroad - how they travelled, where they went and how WE became Tourists! and......what has a dining fork got to do with it all?