Talks


  • January 26, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  • February 23, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  • March 8, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  • April 26, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  • May 17, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
  • June 28, 2020
    2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Recently Janice Turner wrote an article after attending a Death Cafe entitled “Life would be better if we faced up to death”. She explains: “Death Cafes, like bereavement groups and counselling are secular substitutes for the religion we’ve lost. Without faith it is harder to navigate mortality, to formulate new rituals rather than repeat those (more…)


  • February 13, 2020
    7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

True love. Forbidden love. Doomed love. Childhood sweethearts, an abducted heiress, and the celebrated lady writer who enjoyed a menage-a-trois with an acclaimed rock-climber and his wife. Join us for a Valentine’s talk with a twist and hear about some of the Bristol women who were embedded in truly remarkable love stories in days gone (more…)


  • Memento Mori: Victorian Mourning Jewellery
    March 5, 2020
    7:30 pm - 8:30 pm

The opulent world of Victorian love and grief is a beautiful, elaborate and bizarre one. From elaborate hair wreaths to enormous brooches and impossibly expensive black jewels, mourning jewellery displays a devotion and beautiful morbidity that our contemporary lives lack.  Illustrated with a wide personal collection of mourning wear, jewels and ephemera, this talk aims (more…)


  • March 7, 2020
    12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Death has been a source of grief and uncertainty throughout history – but has also inspired a plethora of fascinating funeral customs. From the covering of mirrors to prevent the departed spirit from becoming trapped; the passing bell, rung to assist the soul to heaven; to modern customs such as eco-burial and wayside memorials, historian (more…)


  • March 8, 2020
    11:30 am - 12:30 pm

We are excited to welcome the fantastic Dr John Troyer to talk about memorial tattoos as part of our Life, Death (& the Rest) festival. In this age where most of us will not be remembered on tombstones we may find we live on in the form of a memorial tattoo on the arm or torso (more…)


  • March 8, 2020
    1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

Bristol poets, the IsamBards, will take you on a poetic journey around some of the historic, poignant, beautiful and unforgettable places within Arnos Vale. They will share their original poems inspired by this special place at several stops on the tour.  This is a chance to celebrate Arnos Vale in life, death and the rest, (more…)


  • March 13, 2020
    7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

* Please note that this event has been postponed from 12th Dec to Fri 13th March 2020 * A candle lit Gin Tasting, journeying through Victoriana London’s addiction to Madame Genever’s pacifying poison… Fake funeral processions for Madame Genever gave the crowded the streets of Victoriana London a prohibition feel…but who were we mourning? Sip (more…)


  • Growing Victorians in your Garden
    March 14, 2020
    11:00 am - 12:00 pm

“Victorians are notoriously difficult to grow from seed, so my advice is to buy small potted Victorians from the garden centre and grow them on.” Come and listen to experienced gardener, Bill Jones, talk about growing Victorians in your garden in an hour of comedy packed with illustrated props, terrible puns and plenty of sage (more…)


  • May 9, 2020
    11:00 am - 12:00 pm

The eighteenth century was an important time for the establishment and development of the undertaking trade. In towns and cities across England, the first undertaking businesses were started by entrepreneurial artisans who adopted the title of ‘undertaker’ and performed respectable funerals for a burgeoning middle class. The success of these businesses ensured that the social (more…)


  • Jet Black ticket
    May 15, 2020
    7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

The Victorian celebration of death can’t help but catch our imagination; images of widows in trailing black veils, huge monuments to death, plumed horses and impossibly expensive mourning jewels offer a morbid beauty our contemporary existence lacks. In many areas of modern society, we are taught that funerals need to be quick affairs, that mourning (more…)