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Programme 2020
Generously supported by
The Westminster Foundation

All meetings and talks are at the Grosvenor Museum, Chester at 7-30pm
Except for
January 2020 & February 2020 talks
which are at 2-30pm
Entry is free to members, £5 for visitors and £2 for students/under 18.


Thursday 6th February at 2.30 - afternoon lecture.

Adventures of an Art Dealer - discovering lost paintings

by Miles Wynn Cato

Miles Wynn Cato has been a dealer in historic British art for over 30 years.
An authority on early Welsh painting, he is also the author of several books including the first biography and catalogue of the work of Sir Joshua Reynolds' Welsh pupil, the portrait painter William Parry (1742-1791)
Miles's illustrated talk will look at some of the fascinating discoveries he has made during his time as a dealer, with insights into the challenges and rewards of being an art dealer in the 21st century.

Sponsored by Brian Dykes

Wednesday 4th March at 7.30pm

Taylor’s Boatyard
250 years of Boatbuilding

by Geoff Taylor

Geoff Taylor, grandson of Joseph Harry Taylor, the founder of JH Taylor and Sons, Chester, will outline the history of a boatbuilding family that had its origins in the Black Country in the early 19th C. It brings together many years of research and includes oral history, family documents and many original photographs.

Sponsored by The Westminster Foundation

Thursday 16th April at 7.30pm

The quest for Perfection: designing the 18th century English Country House and its landscape

by Dr Alan Crosby

The talk ties in with Peter Boughton’s Grosvenor Museum exhibition
April – October

Dr Alan Crosby guides us into the world where Georgian country houses are among the supreme achievements of English architecture.
Their designers drew their inspiration from the classical buildings of the Mediterranean, but modified and reworked these styles to produce something distinctively English.
The principles of simplicity, symmetry and formal lines were adopted and adapted in a thousand different ways.
No less important was their setting.
Here the emergence of a highly characteristic English style of landscaping can be traced back to the 1720s and 1730s, although it is popularly exemplified by the work of Capability Brown 30 or 40 years later.
Ironically, perhaps, the landscape style rejected formal straight lines in favour of sweeping curves and artfully created vistas but the combination of house and garden is uniquely harmonious.
This talk looks at England as a whole, but uses many examples from the houses and designed landscapes of Cheshire and adjacent areas.

Sponsored by Col and Mrs Bryan King

Wednesday 6th May at 7.30pm

Deva Victrix & Isca Silurum: Life at the edge of the Roman Empire

by Dr Caroline Pudney

In this lecture, Dr Caroline Pudney will explore the ways in which archaeology has unearthed and shed light on the people of Roman Chester (Deva) and Caerleon (Isca).
Situated at the edge of Britannia and the Imperium Romanum, these legionary fortresses attracted people from across the empire, all of whom brought with them their own cultural traditions and social practices, creating a cultural melting pot.
What evidence for these individuals survives and how has it shaped a narrative of life in and around the western frontier of Britannia?
Caroline Pudney appeared with Professor Alice Roberts in the Channel 4 programme ‘Britain’s most historic towns – Roman Chester’.