Socrates’ trial and death together form an iconic moment in Western civilization. The picture we have of it – created by his immediate followers and perpetuated in countless works of literature and art ever since – is that a noble man was put to death in a fit of folly by the ancient Athenian democracy. But an icon, an image, is not reality.
The historian presents a selection of artefacts and their stories, from weapons that created carnage to affectionate letters home and unexpected items of trench decoration. Cooksey adds contemporary colour with stories from Harry’s War, his collaboration with Great War veteran Harry Drinkwater.
Come and meet the one and only Michael Rosen and find out all about Jelly Boots, Smelly Boots and Uncle Gobb and the Plot Plot and his other fabulous stories including We're Going on a Bear Hunt as we celebrate its 30th birthday. Jelly Boots is a riotous poetry celebration of words – silly words, funny words, words you only use in your own family, new words, old words, and the very best words in the right order. Uncle Gobb and the Plot Plot is the third uproarious Uncle Gobb adventure and sees Malcolm and his awful Uncle Gobb return, each with a cunning plot…
A graphic novel that gives a unique insight into the world of motor sport, from the former CEO of the Williams F1 Team.
The chair of the Wellcome Book Prize jury reflects on how we share what we know, and how science progresses. The shortlist for this year’s prize is The Outrun by Amy Liptrot, Signs for Lost Children by Sarah Moss, It’s All In Your Head by Suzanne O’Sullivan, Playthings by Alex Pheby, The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink and NeuroTribes by Steve Silberman. The winner is announced on 25 April.
Emerald Fennell, author and Call the Midwife star talks about her new book: A blackly comic tale about two children you would never want to meet. Set in the Cornish town of Fowey, all is not as idyllic as the beautiful seaside town might seem. The body of a young woman is discovered in the nets of a fishing boat. It is established that the woman was murdered. Most are shocked and horrified. But there is somebody who is not - a twelve-year-old girl. She is delighted; she loves murders. Soon she is questioning the inhabitants of the town in her own personal investigation. But it is a bit boring on her own. Then Miles Giffard, a similarly odd twelve-year-old boy, arrives in Fowey with his mother, and they start investigating together. Oh, and also playing games that re-enact the murders. Just for fun, you understand...
The young cavalry lieutenant wrote a vivid account of his experiences fighting Pashtun tribesmen – the great-great-grandfathers of today’s insurgents – on the North West Frontier. The Telegraph’s defence editor gives an insight into C19th military history that also throws light on a modern conflict that has lasted longer than WWII. Chaired by Mark Skipworth.
How did our mariners manage without digital GPS? Captain Wells, master of Cunard’s QM2, traces the history of navigating the oceans by measuring the heavens using sextants and astrolabes; and author and broadcaster Ridpath, Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, explores the mythology surrounding key constellations.
The historians reveal unknown secrets of Bletchley’s wartime operation and the Enigma, and discuss the code-breaking challenges we face in today’s rapidly changing and technologically complex world. McKay is the author of the bestselling The Lost World of Bletchley Park and Bletchley Park - The Secret Archives. Bletchley Park’s Enigma expert, Thomas Briggs, brings a genuine, working Enigma machine to the Festival.
Ukraine: What Should The West Do?
150 years on, Crimea is again the centre of a geo-political crisis that threatens to destabilize East–West relations. How should the West react to Putin’s decisive intervention? Rausing works in the human rights field around the Caucasus, Butler is an energy expert, frontline journalist Bullough has newly returned from Ukraine. They talk to the editor of Prospect.
Rob Penn cut down an ash tree to see how many things could be made from it. Journeying from Wales and Ireland across Europe to the USA, he finds that the ancient skills and knowledge of the properties of ash, developed over millennia making wheels and arrows, furniture and baseball bats, are far from dead. He chronicles how the urge to appreciate trees still runs through us like grain through wood.
A multi-media performance presenting a striking record of Welsh gravestones coupled with prose and poetry responses by two prominent writers from Wales, Hopwood and Walford Davies, and photographed by White.