Herefordshire in 1913 was an old-fashioned shire under the benevolent rule of the Church and the gentry. Its bishop was opposed to war and his successor was opposed to women’s suffrage. Many of its farmers refused to plough on a Sunday: many more regarded women as being incapable of farm work. By 1919 the shire was in mourning for more than 4,000 men, had employed 4,000-plus women in munitions factories and another 2,500 on farms. It had deprived more children of a proper education than any other English county.
Want to cook ridiculously good vegan food from scratch but have no idea where to start? Firth and Theasby, creators of the world’s biggest and fastest-growing, plant-based platform, BOSH!, are the new faces of the food revolution. They share their favourite go-to breakfasts, crowd-pleasing party pieces, hearty dinners, sumptuous desserts and incredible sharing cocktails. Hosted by John Mitchinson.
In his extraordinary travelogue Something of his Art: Walking to Lübeck with J S Bach, Clare recreates the walk that J S Bach, then an unknown composer and organ teacher, made in the depths of winter in 1705 across Germany to Lübeck. This was the pivotal point in the young composer’s life, when he began his journey to becoming the master of the Baroque. Clare’s second 2018 publication is The Light in The Dark: a moving and lyrical evocation of a British winter and the feelings it inspires. The writer raises a torch against the darkness, illuminating the blackest corners of the season, and delving into memory and myth to explore the powerful hold that winter has on us. Chaired by Dylan Moore.
At this social event Kevin Sheridan of Sheridans Cheesemongers and Enrico Fantasia of Grape Circus present a selection of modern Irish cheeses and Old World wines. Tastings included.
An illustrated lecture explores the earliest human art and what it tells us about our ancestors. Bahn looks at the famous cave paintings of Lascaux, Altamira, and Chauvet and the thousands of exquisite pieces of portable art in bone, antler, ivory, and stone produced in the same period. In 2003, Bahn led the team that discovered the first Ice Age cave art in England, at Creswell Crags in Nottinghamshire. Chaired by Daisy Leitch.
Koala brothers Dude, Bro and Squirt love doing…nothing. They can do nothing all day. But their little sister has other ideas and soon leads them into another Koala Calamity.
Duration 45 mins.
For much of history, soil has played a central role in society. Farmers and gardeners worldwide nurture their soil to provide their plants with water, nutrients and protection from pests and diseases; major battles have been aborted or stalled by the condition of soil; murder trials have been solved with evidence from soil; and, for most of us, our ultimate fate is the soil. The Professor of Ecology at Manchester explores the role soil plays in our lives and in the bio-geochemical cycles that allow the planet to function effectively. He considers how better soil management could combat global issues such as climate change, food shortages and the extinction of species.
A well of memories draws us into the Welsh landscape of the poet’s childhood: her parents, the threat of war, the richness of nature as experienced by a child. In the second of the collection’s six parts we find ourselves in the Zoology Museum, whose specimens stare back from their cases: the Snowdon rainbow beetle, the marsh fritillary, the golden lion tamarin. In later sections the poet invites us to Hafod Y Llan, the Snowdonian nature reserve rich in Alpine flowers and abandoned mineshafts, ‘where darkness laps at the brink of a void deep as cathedrals’. Clarke captures a complete cycle of seasons on the land, its bounty and hardship, from the spring lamb ‘birthed like a fish/steaming in moonlight’ to the ewe bearing her baby ‘in the funeral boat of her body’. The poems tap into a powerful, feminist empathy that sees beyond differentiations of species to an understanding deeper than knowledge, something subterranean, running through the land. Chaired by Imtiaz Dharker.
Cerrie Burnell, CBeebies presenter, brings to life her magical tale of Harper, a resourceful little girl who lives in the City of Clouds with her beloved cat Midnight and her Aunt Sassy.
Four books inspired by desperate stories from around the world: A Jigsaw of Fire and Stars is Ghanaian-British filmmaker Yaba Badoe’s story of the horrors of people-trafficking and the magic of African folklore. In Child 1 Steve Tasane captures the survival spirit of a group of undocumented children in a refugee camp. Inspired by the plight of child refugees in Ethiopia, Ele Fountain’s Boy 87 is one 14-year-old’s search for a better life. In Mitch Johnson’s Kick, a boy called Budi is working in a sweatshop in Jakarta making football boots but dreams of being a football star. Chaired by Sian Cain.
The classic London fogs, thick yellow pea-soupers, were born in the Industrial Age and remained a feature of cold, windless winter days until clean air legislation in the 1960s. Corton tells the story of the fogs, their dangers and beauty, and the lasting effects on our culture and imagination of these urban spectacles. Chaired by Oliver Balch.
Winston Spencer Churchill was never far from the world's attention. Acclaimed historian Max Arthur shares revealing photographs and stories from Churchill’s front-line experiences as a soldier and journalist in India, Sudan and Cuba, to the Boer War and World War I; through to his unparalleled political career and his ‘finest hour’, leading Britain during World War II. Chaired by Peter Florence.
Sariolghalam is Professor of International Relations at Tehran’s Shahid Beheshti University and is one of Iran’s best-selling authors. For 26 years he has taught and conducted research on contemporary history and Iran’s relations with the outside world. His acknowledged skill has been to find ways to navigate Iran’s red lines in public discourse, and to avoid being targeted for being outspoken in print. The political establishment not only tolerated his writings, it has also been influenced by them. And Iran’s next generation views them as having helped to frame the 2015 nuclear agreement and expectations for the future.
The Israeli historian presents his powerful and groundbreaking history of the Occupied Territories. He analyses legal and security structures, political positions and abortive peace attempts, and discusses the possibilities for reconciliation. His other books include The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine and Ten Myths About Israel.
Illustrator Emma Shoard and singer and storyteller Geraldine Bradley bring to life Siobhan Dowd’s The Pavee and the Buffer Girl in picture, story and song. The story of the friendship between a traveller boy and a settled girl, this is a hymn to the power of love and friendship to bridge differences. Irish traveller songs, both traditional and modern, are woven into this reading of the story, as the characters and settings are illustrated on screen.
The Guardian cartoonist Martin Rowson employs his trademark draughtsmanship and wit to this lively graphic novel adaptation of Marx and Engels’ revolutionary pamphlet. Published to coincide with the 200th anniversary of Marx’s birth, at a time of deep mistrust in The Establishment, The Communist Manifesto is both a timely reminder of the politics of hope and a thought-provoking guide to the most influential work of political theory ever published. He introduces his pictures and talks with the comedian Phill Jupitus.
The award-winning New Yorker journalist forensically exposes the billionaire Koch brothers’ funding of interest groups, think-tanks and candidate campaigns to manipulate American politics towards their own extreme libertarian interests. She examines the impact on the 2016 US elections and reveals what influence the network has on politics in the UK and Europe.