This week I want to feature a few of the events that will be taking place during the Medieval Canterbury Weekend 2020 and link them to medieval Canterbury. However, before that I just want to say that Dr Martin Watts will be speaking at the Canterbury branch meeting of the Historical Association tomorrow (Thursday) evening at Kent College. His topic will be his book on the Royal Marines in the Second World War. If you want a taster, please see this earlier blog and if you live locally and this sounds interesting, the local HA will be delighted to see you at 7pm: https://blogs.canterbury.ac.uk/kenthistory/from-anglo-saxons-to-wwii-exploring-canterbury-faversham-and-the-royal-marines/
As the last blog of 2019, I want to record my thanks to many for their efforts this year and to offer my top three events.
We are now gearing up for the Tudors and Stuarts History Weekend on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 April. I have recruited a great group of postgraduates and undergraduates who will be the Welcome Team, and several staff members – both full-time and associates have volunteered to chair various events or ‘back-stop’ the tours. It looks as though it is going to be a busy and exciting time! There are still some tickets available, so if you are interested do check out the website at www.canterbury.ac.uk/tudors-stuarts we shall be delighted to see you.
Before I get to news of events next week, including the William Somner conference on Saturday 23 March, and a report on the Kent History Postgraduates meeting, I have a stop-press announcement to make regarding Tudors and Stuarts 2019. Unfortunately, Dr Clive Holmes has had to withdraw due to ill health. Thus, he will not be able to give his lecture on Oliver Cromwell and witches, but I am exceeding fortunate and grateful that Dr Rebecca Warren from the University of Kent and an expert on the period, has generously agreed to step into the breach. She will cover the same topic but from her own angle and her lecture will be entitled: ‘Protector or Persecutor? Witches, the Devil and Oliver Cromwell’. Obviously, everyone at the Centre wishes Clive a speedy and full recovery.
Before I get to the book launch and a meeting on mapping Faversham through time, I thought I would mention that the CCCU Kent History Postgraduates will be holding their monthly seminar next Wednesday. Our two presentations will be given by Janet Clayton, whom many of you will know is studying Scadbury manor and the surrounding area with special reference to the High Middle Ages, and Abigail Sargent. It will be great to welcome Abigail because she is doing her doctorate at Princeton University in the United States. Currently, she is on an archival research trip studying peasant communities in Kent and Normandy, again looking specifically at the High Middle Ages. Obviously, there will be a report on this seminar next week.
Apologies about the short notice, because the Anglo-Saxon Candlemas concert is taking place on Saturday 2 February at 7pm in SS Mary and Eanswythe church, Folkstone. This is part of the HLF-funded ‘Finding Eanswythe’ project and will feature plainchant, poetry, songs and readings by candlelight in this 12th-century church. This Marian feast celebrates the presentation of Christ at the temple, bringing light to the world and sending winter on its way. Those taking part are Margaret Cameron as singer and choir leader, Dr Mike Bintley who will read passages in Old English, James Lloyd who will provide an account of the life of St Eanswythe, and the concert will also feature the Eanswythe choir. Do feel free to join them in Folkestone.
Now that the Easter holidays have arrived, I thought I would ask local readers if they have spotted the two posters in Waterstones advertising ‘Saturn’s Fury’ – the puppet show that will be taking place in the children’s area on the first floor of the book shop on Friday 6 April starting at 11am. Saturn, the green dragon, is making a guest appearance from The Canterbury Tales and would like as many young children and their parents, grandparents and others as possible to come along to help him find his roar which he has lost. This event is FREE and booking is not required. It forms the opening event of the Medieval Canterbury Weekend, and for slightly older ‘young medievalists’ and adults there is the chance that afternoon at 3pm to hear ‘Campfire Tales – with a Canterbury Twist’ in the garden of The Canterbury Tales. To book this and other events at the Medieval Canterbury Weekend, please visit: https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/medieval-canterbury or after the Easter weekend phone 01227 782994.
Exciting news this week, we passed the thousand-ticket mark for the Medieval Canterbury Weekend 2018. There are still tickets for all the talks but some of the guided tours have now sold out. So if you haven’t already done so, why not check out the website at: www.canterbury.ac.uk/medieval-canterbury for exciting talks on wonderful medieval manuscripts (Professors Michelle Brown and Richard Gameson), fantastic stained glass windows or medieval beasts (Leonie Seliger and Dr Diane Heath).
Being back in Canterbury this week, I am now turning my attention to future Centre events, especially those due to take place in the next couple of months.