Fes­ti­val looks to the past to cel­e­brate power of the peo­ple

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS -

TALKS cov­er­ing sub­jects rang­ing from Em­press Matilda and Mar­garet Thatcher to the fall of Troy and Tianan­men Square are among the events at this year’s Glouces­ter His­tory Fes­ti­val.

Tick­ets have gone on sale for the Fes­ti­val, which runs from Septem­ber

7 to 22 with the theme

Power and the Peo­ple.

The women of Green­ham Com­mon will be cel­e­brated with a two-day tented in­stal­la­tion fea­tur­ing oral histories of some of the 70,000 women who made a 14-mile hu­man chain as US cruise mis­siles ar­rived on Bri­tish soil in 1983.

The fes­ti­val’s key­note talks will again take place in Black­fri­ars, Eng­land’s old­est li­brary, with a new se­ries of Scrip­to­rium Shorts – free bite-size bi­og­ra­phy talks in the li­brary where the monks worked in 1239.

And the com­mu­nity-led City Voices pro­gramme brings to­gether pub­lic projects from across Glouces­ter, cel­e­brat­ing the county’s amaz­ing his­tory and lo­cal her­itage.

The pro­gramme fea­tures pa­rades, city trails and her­itage walks, in­ter­ac­tive days for fam­i­lies and lots of moon-based ac­tiv­i­ties and ex­hi­bi­tions.

Talks cu­ra­tor, Sarah Smyth, said: “Over 700 years ago the monks brought the towns­peo­ple into Black­fri­ars Pri­ory for the first time and its thrilling to be able to bring au­di­ences into ex­actly the same space to soak up an­cient and mod­ern his­tory in the most com­plete Do­mini­can pri­ory in Bri­tain.”

His­to­rian Dr Jan­ina Ramirez, in­set, re­turns for her fourth year as fes­ti­val pres­i­dent, dis­cussing the dis­cov­er­ies she un­earthed while cre­at­ing her BBC TV se­ries Lost and Found.

She said: “I’m thrilled to in­tro­duce our most ex­cit­ing pro­gramme yet. Some of the nation’s great­est his­to­ri­ans will be on our mag­nif­i­cent stage to give au­di­ences in­trigu­ing new per­spec­tives and fresh voices on the past.”

The direc­tor of GCHQ, Jeremy Fleming, will be speak­ing about the world-lead­ing in­tel­li­gence, cy­ber and se­cu­rity agency.

Other star names in­clude Lucy Wors­ley on Jane Austen, Max Hast­ings on the Dam­busters, Kate Adie on Tianan­men Square, Susie Dent on the se­cret power of words, Do­minic Sand­brook on the 1980s and Alice Roberts on the Celts.

The fes­ti­val also has Si­mon Winch­ester on his­tory’s great­est en­gi­neers, Suzan­nah Lip­scomb on Re­for­ma­tion women, David Olu­soga on the Win­drush gen­er­a­tion and Cerys Matthews on Where the Wild Cooks Go.

Tick­ets are on sale at glouces­ter­his­to­ryfes­ti­val.co.uk.

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