5 December 2015

Bristol Local History Book Fair

Join us for the annual Bristol Local History Book Fair. Books and pamphlets on sale from Bristol publishers, authors and societies.

Browse a wide selection of local history titles and listen to free talks in the afternoon.

Booksellers include:

Avon Local History & Archaeology, Bristol Books, Bristol Radical History Group, Bristol Archives Society, Bishop Books, Dreadnought Books, Dru Marland, South Glos Mines Research Group, Tangent Books, Writers Unchained plus independent authors.

Talks (admission free):

12pm – Martin Powell: the story of the world’s first test tube baby

At 11.47 pm on 25 July 1978, Louise Brown was the first person ever to be born through science rather than as a result of two people having sex. Hear how the world’s media gathered in Bristol to greet the arrival of the ‘miracle baby’ and how a Bristol couple changed the world, leading to religious, moral and political arguments worldwide. There are now five million IVF babies in the world.

A talk with pictures and rare film by Martin Powell (Louise’s biographer) and Louise, who will be available to answer questions.

1.30pm – Helen Thomas and Rosie Tomlinson: The Bedminster Tobacco Women project

For around 100 years the skyline and streets of south Bristol were dominated by the red brick factories of HD & HO Wills and the other tobacco firms. Thousands of local women and men worked for these companies, making cigars and cigarettes for the nation. With their experiences in danger of being forgotten, the Bedminster Tobacco Women have collected their stories.

2.30pm – Jacqueline Wadsworth: Florence, Maude, and the First World War

A talk about Florence Cottle and Maude Boucher, two completely different Bristol women whose First World War letters and scrapbook (both kept at Bristol Archives) were invaluable for Jacqueline’s research for her books ‘Letters From The Trenches’ and ‘Bristol In the Great War’.

3.30pm – Molly Conisbee: A brief history of the funeral

How has the way we deal with death changed over time? Molly Conisbee will explore some of the changing practices and rituals of the funeral and body disposal from the medieval period to the present. How have we remembered our dead? How have social and cultural changes impacted on this? What can our evolving relationship to death tell us about our living present?