Forthcoming talks Forthcoming talks

All talks begin at 2.15pm (unless otherwise stated) in the Costessey Centre, Longwater Lane, Costessey.

No response slips are required – just pay £1 per person at the door which includes tea and biscuits. Each member may bring up to two guests.



Tuesday, 25 February 2020: The Strangers – Jean Smith & Helen Hoyte

(This is a joint talk organised by the History Group).

In order to fill the labour shortage following the plague, we accepted the Dutch Strangers and Walloons, albeit with a few strict rules, to ply their trade in our fine City via Strangers Hall in the 16th Century. We hear how the Bishop of Norwich had to give up his home during the visit by Queen Elizabeth I and how Parson Woodfoode had the City gates literally shut in his face.


Tuesday, 24 March 2020: Deltiology – Gerald Brown

Deltiology – the study and collection of picture postcards. A popular and relatively inexpensive interest of many in the third age. An illustrated talk on their development, publishers, types, topics to collect etc.


Tuesday, 28 April 2020: What was so special about Humphry Repton?’ - Professor Tom Williamson

(This is a joint talk organised by the Garden Group).

In 2018, ‘Repton 200’ celebrated 200 years since the great landscape designer Humphry Repton died and there were many events to mark the bicentenary. Repton is said to have carried out some of his finest work in Norfolk, including Sheringham Park and Catton Park.


Tom Williamson is Professor of Landscape History at UEA and is co-editor of a book ‘Humphry Repton in Norfolk’, published in 2018. He previous gave a talk to the Retirement Association in March 2015 on ‘Ancient trees in the Norfolk landscape’, reviewed as a very lively and interesting talk.


Tuesday, 26 May 2020: The Shoe Trade of Norwich – Barbara Miller
Since earliest times men have needed a covering for their feet and shoe fashion has been a factor through the ages. For over 100 years the commercial shoe trade was an important part of the industrial life of the city now it has all but disappeared. We will look at how shoes developed over the ages and what caused the demise of this important industry in Norwich.


Tuesday, 23 June 2020: (After the AGM) John Betjeman – Tony Diamond

Betjeman is incredibly funny, piercingly poignant, deliciously descriptive, and enthusiastically English from his semi-balding pate all the way down to his anklets wading in Norfolk waters. He is the kind of good boy who never said a bad word about anybody in his life, never had a bad word said about him, and got up to all sorts as often as he could. Of all the good fairies who attended his advent, the finest was that sprite who gave him the gift of laughter. What a happy legacy he has bequeathed us!


Margaret Robins