Grosvenor Museum Society Logo

Programme 2018 - 2019
Generously supported by
The Westminster Foundation

All meetings and talks are at the Grosvenor Museum, Chester at 7-30pm
Except for
January 2019 & February 2019 talks
which are at 2-30pm
Entry is free to members, £5 for visitors and £2 for students/under 18s.

Wednesday 28th November at 7-30

Seasonal Concert with the Hammond Chorale
followed by a buffet supper with wine
held at a local prestigious venue

This very popular and sociable event features music and songs from the highly talented members of Chester’s Hammond School is a wonderful start to the festive season.

Admission is by ticket only purchased in advance
£20 each to include buffet supper and a glass of wine or soft drink

For ticket enquiries and further details please email

Tuesday 11th December at 7-30pm

The Curious Origins of our Christmas Traditions
by Ken Pye

Ken Pye will tell the story of why we celebrate this most important of our annual festivals in the ways that we do, and how these traditions and ceremonies all began.
There will be lots of laughter and even some singing.

Sponsored by Wild Goose Lakeside Bar and Restaurant, Dodleston, Chester

Wednesday 12th December

Spirit of Christmas Tour

Following the success of last year’s fascinating guided tour around the Christmas decorations in the Museum house
we are offering Grosvenor Museum Society members another chance to join
Museum staff as they take us through the ages of Christmas traditions.
Tour includes a festive mince pie and drink.

There will be two tours, costing £4 per ticket and it is essential to book to avoid disappointment.
To book tickets email
Please note that the upper floors of the house are only accessible by stairs.

Tuesday 22nd January NB afternoon lecture at 2.30pm

The Victorian Way of Death
by Dr Amanda Draper

From horse-drawn hearse to jet jewellery, the Victorians lavished much more money on their funerals than on their weddings.
Find out why, as Dr Amanda Draper lifts the veil to reveal to us the cryptic customs enshrouding a Victorian death.

Sponsored by G & M Goold Independent Funeral Services, Chester

This lecture complements the Grosvenor Museum exhibition Dead Normal: Death in Everyday Life
(27th October- 22nd April)

Thursday 7th February NB afternoon lecture at 2.30pm

C.S.S. Florida
by Leonard Ellison

Leonard Ellison reveals the intriguing history of this ship, built in the Liverpool shipyards in 1862, for the Confederate States government and its chequered career thereafter.

Sponsored by Colonel and Mrs Bryan King

Thursday 14th March at 7.30pm

Scandal, Spies and the Theatre
by Colin Barber

Colin Barber’s talk focuses on the 1950s, 60s and 70s and reveals fascinating and dramatic stories through words, pictures and music with guest ‘appearances’ of such familiar and notorious names as Rackman and Profumo.

Sponsored by 1539 Restaurant and Bar, Chester Racecourse

Monday 8th April at 7.30pm

War and Peace
Aden and Germany 1956-1962
Joint lecture in association with the Royal Aeronautical Society

by Corporal Carl Mann and Sergeant Peter Ratcliffe

Corporal Carl Mann and Sergeant Peter Ratcliffe bring to life the era of National Service and examine the contrast between imminent terrorist attacks through the Aden crisis and some light-hearted memories of the party atmosphere for senior N.C.O.s and officers at the British H.Q of the British Army on the Rhine.

Sponsored by Mr Brian Dykes

Tuesday 28th May at 7.30pm

King of all Balloons

by Mark Davies

Mark Davies’ talk will be full of the hot air as he describes the exciting event in 1785 when three manned balloon flights took off from the City of Chester, and he continues with a look at the courage and invention of the pioneers of flight – men and women – over subsequent decades.

Sponsored by Bonhams, Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers, Chester