Talks and Events

Boot Sale Harvest: Adrian May & Ken Worpole In Conversation

Date /Time: Saturday, 1 July 2023. 19.00 - 20.30
Boot Sale Harvest cover

Wivenhoe Bookshop and Dunlin Press invite you to the Wivenhoe launch of Boot Sale Harvest by Adrian May. The event will feature Adrian in conversation with writer and social historian Ken Worpole.

In Boot Sale Harvest, writer, poet and songwriter Adrian May takes a seasonal journey through the car-boot fields that artist Grayson Perry has described as being like a 'casual museum'. In the boot sales of Essex we discover the lost and found of everyday life, and begin to reclaim the "things that everyday folks leave behind."

Information & booking:
Venue: St Mary's Annexe, Wivenhoe, Essex.

First Light Festival, Lowestoft: England Under Water

Date /Time: Saturday, 17 June 2023. 13.15 - 14.15
England under water map

Writers James Meek and Ken Worpole explore the flood threat to the East of England, past, present and future. The Great Flood of 1953, the combination of a high spring tide and a storm over the North Sea, caused a surge to sweep across the East Coast and up the Thames Estuary, was the worst natural disaster in Britain of the 20th century, in which 307 people lost their lives in England and over 1,800 people in the Netherlands.

It also produced one of the great works of English social history, The Great Tide by Hilda Grieve, which tells the story of the flood disaster in Essex. But this was not the first, and it will by no means be the last such inundation both to take life and wreck infrastructure. As the climate crisis worsens, two of the UK's most trenchant commentators explore the history of, responses to, and possible outcomes from worsening flooding in the east of England and across the country.

Information & booking:

London Review Bookshop
In Conversation: 'The Allotment'

Date /Time: Thursday, 13 July, 2023, 19.00The Allotment book coer

The Allotment by Colin Ward and David Crouch is a 1988 classic of social and oral history, long out of print but finally reissued by the indefatigable Little Toller Books. As Olivia Laing writes in her introduction, it is ‘not just a history of guinea gardens, pigeon sheds and Dig for Victory, but of the social and historical conditions out of which the allotment arose and inside which it stubbornly persists.’

Join social historian Ken Worpole (No Matter How Many Skies Have Fallen, Little Toller Books), writer Olivia Laing (Everyday, Picador), and literary critic Jon Day (Homing, John Murray) to discuss this seminal book. Jon Day - who himself runs a community garden in London - will be chairing (and digging deep).

Information & booking:
Venue: London Review Bookshop, 14 Bury Place, London WC1A 2JL

Dig Where You Stand

Date /Time: Wednesday, 22 March 2023, 7pmDig where you stand book cover

On the 45th anniversary of its initial publication in Swedish, Sven Lindqvist’s polemic on history, politics and power is finally available in English for the first time. A how-to guide that inspired an entire movement, it makes the case that everyone – not just academics – can learn how to critically and rigorously explore history, especially their own history, and in doing so find a blueprint for how to transform society for the better.

Social historian and topographer Ken Worpole will be chairing a discussion of this classic work with Vron Ware, author of Return of a Native and the volume’s editors Astrid von Rosen and Andrew Flinn.

Information & booking:
Venue: London Review Bookshop, 14 Bury Place, London WC1A 2JL