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Read our Booking Terms & Conditions.

For Members

Leeds Castle and Festival of Flowers

Day Visit
Leeds Castle, Kent

Tue, 17 Sep 19
8.30am - 6.30pm

Tickets £35.00. After 3rd September, Members may book a non-member guest if there are still places available.

Leeds Castle has been described as “the loveliest Castle in the World”. Rising majestically from the moat for 900 years, and with 500 acres of beautiful parkland and gardens, Leeds Castle has been a Norman stronghold; the private property of six of England’s queens; a palace used by Henry VIII; a Jacobean country house; a Georgian mansion; and an elegant 20th century retreat for the influential and famous. Visit includes the annual “Festival of Flowers”

The River Deben

Mark Mitchels
Chapters Restaurant

Wed, 02 Oct 19
19.00 - 20.30

£5. Members may bring non-member guests to this event.

You may have thought Mark had retired - but he can’t resist returning to such a delightful audience!
Another illustrated talk from Mark, about one of the most beautiful rivers running through our county

Rediscovering Cedric Morris, Artist & Plantsman

Diana Grace
Birkbeck Room

Thu, 24 Oct 19
14.00 - 15.00

£4. Members may bring non-member guests to this event

Cedric Morris was in his time a highly acclaimed, commercially successful artist and our illustrated talk offers a glimpse into the world of this under-rated artist.

Silbury Hill - Unplugged, with Afternoon Tea

Chapters Restaurant

Tue, 05 Nov 19
15.00 - 16.00

£8. Members may bring non-member guests to this event

David Stainer and Scott Dolling play a lively mix of acoustic music at events and clubs throughout the region as well as an occasional foray into France and Belgium! They bring a selection of tunes and tales to the Institute, to be taken with afternoon tea.
Book early!

"Behind the Seams" Guided Tour od Angel Costumes, Hendon

Day Trip
Angel Costumes, Hendon

Wed, 27 Nov 19
8.30am - 6.30pm

Tickets £40.00. After 13th November Members may book a non-member guest if places are available.

A guided tour of the world's largest costume house showcasing their extensive collection with over 1 million items. Hear first-hand accounts of working on the biggest productions - such as Shakespeare in Love, The Lady in the Van and Downton Abbey - and see clothes created for Benedict Cumberbatch, Judi Dench, Fred Astaire, and many more. On the way there will be a short visit for free time/lunch in the historic, Cathedral city of St Albans.

For All

Stardust: Tales from the early days of British computing.

Professor Simon Lavington

Chapters Restaurant

Wed, 23 Oct 19
19.00 - 20.30

£4 (£5 for non-members)

RESCHEDULED from 9th October

The talk will tell the story of the life and times of nine Ferranti computers launched into an unsuspecting market place between 1951 and 1957. This was a family of very early supercomputers, digital dinosaurs that lumbered from Manchester to Toronto, Amsterdam and Rome, consuming a diet of applications that ranged from atomic weapons to cotton spinning.

Above all, this is the story of the men and women who struggled to tame the dinosaurs and put their primitive powers to useful work. The talk will be embellished with rare photos and intriguing personal anecdotes.

Whilst the talk does give plenty of technical details, particularly about the Ferranti installation at GCHQ, the socio-economic and human backdrop always shines through.

Emeritus Professor Simon Lavington, M.Sc., Ph.D., FIEE, FBCS graduated from Manchester University in 1962 and joined the University’s computer design group. He became Professor of Computer Science at the University of Essex in 1986.

Art workshop - Techniques - Soft Pastels

Steve Joyce

Birkbeck Room, 15 Tavern Street

Sat, 09 Nov 19
9.30 - 3.30

Materials/equipment list available on booking
Ticket (incl. morning coffee and lunch): £28 Member £33 Non-member

This workshop will explore the methods and materials of soft pastels. Learn how to refine and enhance your skills. All the basics are covered as well as aspects of colour theory and the relation between paper colours and media. Demonstrations and prepared examples will introduce the techniques and open tasks will help you explore your own picture making. Suitable for all ability levels, you will need to bring soft pastels and pastel paper. A full materials list is available, and some materials and papers will be provided and included in the price.

Suffolk Book League Author's Talk

Fiona Sampson

Reading Room

Thu, 14 Nov 19

Fiona Sampson is an internationally acclaimed scholar, editor, poet, biographer and translator as well as a musician. Common Prayer and Rough Music were shortlisted for the T.S.Eliot Prize. In Search of Mary Shelley, The Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein was released 200 years after the publication of Frankenstein in 2018.

Art Workshop - Painters Day with Acrylics

Steve Joyce

Birkbeck Room, 15 Tavern Street

Sat, 23 Nov 19
9.30 - 3.30

Ticket (incl. morning coffee and lunch): £28 Member £33 Non-member
A materials/equipment bring list is available on booking

This workshop will introduce and explore painting methods using acrylics. You will investigate a range of application and manipulation techniques to produce different effects and explore colour mixing and theory to create distinctive compositions. There will be time to develop your skills and direct your focus to your own interests, as well as explore the work and methods of other artists. Suitable for all levels of ability. Materials list available, some items will be provided and included in the cost.

Suffolk Book League Author's Talk

Sir Nicholas Young

Reading Room

Wed, 11 Dec 19

Sir Nicholas Young was, until 2014, CEO of the British Red Cross. Escaping with his Life tells the story of his father’s WW2 experiences at Dunkirk, in the Commandos, and in North Africa, and then his escape from an Italian POW camp. His book is a labour of love, an adventure story and a sign of gratitude to the Italian people who risked their lives to help during the escape.