Forthcoming Tours

Our tours are delivered via Zoom to your device (computer, tablet, mobile phone). Evening tours are 45-60 minutes, plus time for your questions afterwards, and tickets for these are just £10 (+ booking fee) per device/household (i.e. if there are two or more of you watching the same screen, you only need buy one ticket).

You can book direct from the listings below, or just visit our Eventbrite page. We’ve also got a calendar view if you want to see all the month’s events on one sheet.

We’re also more than happy to do private talks – so if you want to arrange something for friends, family, work colleagues, a group or society you belong to – just drop us a line to find out more.

UKToursOnline Season Ticket

If you want to book multiple talks (or buy extra tickets for friends and family) why not get a Season Ticket? You can then get five events for the price of just four (and there’s no Eventbrite booking fee) so you save over 30% – just click on the ‘pay with paypal’ button to the right (you can use credit or debit cards, or paypal, in the checkout)

Buy here – five talks for the price of four

After purchase, we’ll send you a promo code that you can use to book the talks you want.

£40.00

And don’t forget our Gift Certificates – the ideal present for anyone to make their choice of our tours. Available in any units – find out more here.


MORNING TOUR Monday 10 May 10am (London time)

Kensington: A Royal Love Story

YOUR GUIDE: Rachel Pearson

Join Rachel on this Zoom tour of the Royal Borough of Kensington – the Palace, the Gardens, ‘Albertopolis’ and high society.

The borough of Kensington in central London is rich in culture, arts and science, but it hasn’t always been this way.

Originally a little village located outside the boundary of the city, it was Royalty that put it on the map and changed the course of this area.

In this virtual walk we will use the lens of Royal Patronage to explore the history and development and how it went from a village to being a hub of academia.


Tuesday 11 May 6pm (London time)

Shakespeare’s London Life and Times

YOUR GUIDE: Tim Barron

Tim Barron, former west end actor, takes you around the London sites associated with England’s most famous playwright.

We ‘meet’ in the Roman amphitheatre rediscovered in 1988 below The Guild Hall to talk of London’s fantastically rich theatrical heritage. Then it’s over the river to the historic coaching inn, The George to imagine a touring theatre venue that William Shakespeare would have recognised from Elizabethan times.

On to Southwark Cathedral, where Charles Dickens was a bell ringer and Edmond Shakespeare (William’s brother) is buried. We will consider the Bishop of Winchester’s ‘geese’ and the 50% royalty he took from Shakespeare’s Globe theatre.


Wednesday 12 May 7pm (London time)

NEW A Short History of London Part I: from before the Romans to the Great Fire of 1666

YOUR GUIDE: Don Brown

In this two part series, explore how London grew from a small port founded by the Romans to the 21st century ‘world city’ that it is today.

In Part I we’ll go back into pre-history (when wolves and bears roamed the forests on the banks of the Thames, and hippopotamuses swam in the river) and then march through history to the time of Charles II.

We’ll meet the Romans (who founded Londinium), the anglo-saxons (who made it their capital), the Vikings (who tried to destroy it) and the Normans (who built its castles and one of the greatest cathedrals in Europe).

Using maps and artworks, and highlighting where some of the remains of previous times may still be seen, this two part series is a great overview of the world’s greatest city.


Thursday 13 May 7pm (London time)

Exploring the London Blitz

YOUR GUIDE: Don Brown

Discover the story of the bombing campaign that became known as ‘The Blitz’, when London was the front line of WW2 for nine months.

Between September 1940 and May 1941, London was bombed nearly every night, with tens of thousands killed or wounded, and millions of homes destroyed or damaged. Night after night, the population of the world’s biggest city was forced into shelters, basements and tube stations as the Luftwaffe tried to destroy the city and the morale of its people.

Don’s presentation was excellent. The visual aids, maps, and contemporary photos formed a dynamic background for his expert narration. I wholeheartedly recommend this talk!


Sunday 16 May 6pm (London time)

FREE Looking Forward to Revisiting the Past

Join the five of us for another of our free ‘chats’ – this time on some of our favourite museums and galleries.

With museums being allowed to reopen on 17 May in the latest phase of lockdown relaxation, we thought we’d share a few of the best that deserve your attention.

We’ll mention some of the famous ‘national’ collections of course, but we’ll also try and find one or two that are less well known.


MORNING TOUR Monday 17 May 10am (London time)

Literary London

YOUR GUIDE: Rachel Pearson

Some of the most beloved names in English literature have drawn on London as inspiration for their poems and stories.

The most beloved names in English Literature have drawn on London as inspiration for their works; Virginia Woolf, Charles Dickens and Oscar Wilde to name but a few. This inspiration has led to the creation of equally loved fictional Londoners such as Sherlock Holmes, Mrs Dalloway and Bertie Wooster.

What is it about London that has inspired such rich and varied writings? Where can we find evidence of these authors and characters today? Join Rachel as we stroll through parks, explore landmarks and roam the streets following in the footsteps of these literary heroes.


Tuesday 18 May 6pm (London time)

Ancient Wessex: Stonehenge, Avebury, Salisbury and more

YOUR GUIDE: Tim Barron

An exploration of the area in southern England famous for its stone circles and a history going back 9,000 years.

Tim Barron takes you on a journey through the Wessex civilisations with the latest scientific discoveries and re-analysis of existing information leading to some astonishing ‘new‘ finds.

We will look at over 5000 years of civilisation from the Stone age to the origins of Salisbury cathedral in the 1200s. The ups and downs of earth, stone & wood megastructures, some well known, others less so, some waiting to be explored, others still to be discovered!


Wednesday 19 May 7pm (London time)

NEW A Short History of London Part II: from the Great Fire to the present day

YOUR GUIDE: Don Brown

Part II of our short history of the capital, from the Great Fire to the present, by way of wars, Imperial grandeur, decline and reinvention as a World City.

From the reconstruction following the Great Fire, through the huge growth of London in the 18th and 19th centuries, post-WW2 decline, to 21st century reinvention.

We’ll look at the trade, industry and people that made it rich; meet the immigrants – from the rest of the British Isles and around the globe – that made it the most dynamic city in the world; explore the districts and the buildings that sprang up as the city grew; and look at how transport, infrastructure, health and housing were improved over the years.

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the history of the greatest city in the world, this is the place to start!


Thursday 20th May 8pm (London Time)

British Prime Ministers Since 1721

YOUR GUIDE Rachel Pearson

2021 marks 300 years since the first Prime Minister. How has the job changed since then and what of the people who have held this title?

2021 marks 300 years since the creation of the office of Prime Minister. Join Rachel to discover how this role has evolved and changed over the centuries, the separation between monarchy and government, and just why they are also called First Lord of the Treasury.

By the end of this tour, you may well have a different perspective on the ‘Greatest Office in the Land’ and almost certainly about those who have been the leader of the country.


Sunday 23 May 7pm (London time)

Exploring London’s ‘lungs’: the open spaces of the capital

YOUR GUIDE: Rachel Pearson

London is just buildings and people, right? Wrong! There are plenty of public open spaces to enjoy. Find out just how green London is!

Join Rachel to learn more about London’s greenery; From Royal Parks and botanic gardens to common land and nature reserves, find out about the stories behind these places of floral wonder. Meet the people who ensured they would be around for generations to enjoy and get to know the plants and animals that call these places home. There will be some surprising tales along the way and plenty of inspiration to get out and enjoy London in a different way.


MORNING TOUR Monday 24 May 10am (London time)

NEW Trailblazers of the East End

YOUR GUIDE: Laura Adams

Delve into some inspiring success stories that have emerged from London’s East End. From suffrage to sacrifice, this tour has it all.

Join guest speaker Laura Adams from Women Inspire to uncover stories of exceptional women from London’s East End. With warrior spirit and compassion, they fought for survival, and for a better world.

On our journey we meet The Match Girls whose courage and resolve in 1888 marked a defining moment in British history. We follow Sylvia Pankhurst’s campaign for suffrage amongst the working women of Bow, we hear of one woman’s ultimate sacrifice in her fight for justice and equality and meet other inspirational women who have dared to make a difference.


Tuesday 25 May 6pm (London time)

NEW On the Buses! Route no. 12, from south to north across London

YOUR GUIDE: Tim Barron

Climb aboard for a ride around one of London’s oldest bus routes. Let Tim introduce you to the sights that can be seen from the No. 12!

Dating from 1850, this is one of London’s oldest, longest and most fascinating bus routes Running from South to North it passes the site of romantic poet and artist William Blake’s vision of angels, as well as Del Boy and Rodney’s local. We will consider the Elephant & Castle and local boys made good; Charlie Chaplin and Michael Caine. Let’s discuss Florence Nightingale’s pet owl and Augustus Pugin’s architectural masterpiece, The Palace of Westminster as we glide past the ‘Bedlem’ hospital where he was a patient.

On to Regent street and the route’s historic terminus of Hyde Park and then it’s seasonal extension to Europe’s largest human gathering, the Notting Hill Carnival.

“Hold very tight please, Ding-Ding!”


Wednesday 26 May 6pm (London time)

NEW The River Thames in London Part I: Greenwich to Blackfriars

YOUR GUIDE: Emma Matthews

Emma’s virtual cruise along the River Thames is now in two parts. Each five mile section is full of history and great stories.

Part 1 is from Greenwich to Blackfriars on the edge of the City of London. Emma will tell some of the stories associated with Tower Bridge and London Bridge. Learn about our maritime and trading past, uncover scandals from Bankside and check out our modern skyline evolving before your eyes.

Part II is tomorrow night at the same time.

Thursday 27 May 6pm (London time)


NEW The River Thames in London Part II: Blackfriars to Chelsea

YOUR GUIDE: Emma Matthews

Emma’s virtual cruise along the River Thames is now in two parts. Each five mile section is full of history and great stories.

Part 2 starts at Blackfriars and ends at the magnificent Royal Hospital in Chelsea, home to the Chelsea Flower Show and the distinctive Chelsea Pensioners. Passing landmarks including the London Eye and Big Ben, find out about great palaces and mansions of the past and what those buildings are today. We will look at the Women’s Bridge, architecture old and new, and explore one of London’s newest developments.

Part I is the day before at the same time.


Friday 28 May 6pm (London time)

NEW The Charms of Clapham

YOUR GUIDE: Rachel Pearson

From rural village to pretty suburb to trendy hub – Clapham has carved out a distinct identity that has resonated with people for centuries.

Clapham was once a rural Surrey village, with pastureland for grazing flocks. It’s only in the last 200 years that it has become the busy bustling destination we know today. However, its identity has remained more or less intact and the residents of the past would recognise much that remains. Attractive houses dating back to the late 18th and early 19th centuries, the Common with its distinctive bandstand and the busiest railway junction in the UK.

We will unearth Clapham’s part in the two World Wars, meet some of the famous people who have called this part of London home, and also delve into some of Clapham’s less attractive past. Join local Clapham resident Rachel as she sheds new light on this interesting part of South London.

TALKS AND TOURS FOR JUNE

Thursday 3 June 6pm (London time)

NEW Trailblazers of the East End

YOUR GUIDE: Laura Adams

Delve into some inspiring success stories that have emerged from London’s East End. From suffrage to sacrifice, this tour has it all.

Join guest speaker Laura Adams from Women Inspire to uncover stories of exceptional women from London’s East End. With warrior spirit and compassion, they fought for survival, and for a better world.

On our journey we meet The Match Girls whose courage and resolve in 1888 marked a defining moment in British history. We follow Sylvia Pankhurst’s campaign for suffrage amongst the working women of Bow, we hear of one woman’s ultimate sacrifice in her fight for justice and equality and meet other inspirational women who have dared to make a difference.


Friday 4 June 7pm (London time)

Londoners and their Stories

YOUR GUIDE: Rachel Pearson

Come and ‘meet’ some of the Londoners who have left a lasting legacy in the capital and hear about their stories.

Over the centuries various groups and individuals have almost become synonymous with the capital. On this Zoom talk, we are going to meet a few of the people who have left an indelible mark on the city in one way or another and talk about their legacies.

There are the Pearly Kings and Queens, the Chelsea Pensioners and the East End Cockneys. Plus, we will meet individuals such as Joseph Bazalgette, Elizabeth Fry, Thomas Coram, and Rose Heilbron and look at the impact that their time in London had upon them. Could these individuals have flourished anywhere else, or does living in London help cultivate something special?


Sunday 6 June 7pm (London time)

NEW D-Day: A Short History of the Longest Day

YOUR GUIDE: Don Brown

On the anniversary of the greatest seaborne invasion in history, discover the facts about D Day in this online talk.

The D Day assault on the German defences in Normandy on 6 June 1944 was years in the planning, utilised nearly 7,000 ships, transports and landing craft, 11,500 aircraft, and landed 156,000 men by sea and air. None of the first day objectives were realised, but the beachheads that were established were the prelude to the liberation of Western Europe.

Discover the story of this historic event, the preparations of the allies and the Germans, the deception plans and the secret intelligence; learn about the conflicts within the high commands of the opposing forces, and how the day might have turned out very differently.

For anyone with an interest in WW2 history, this will be a fascinating introduction to this momentous day.


Thursday 10 June 6pm (London time)

NEW The Queen’s Diamonds

YOUR GUIDE: Viv Haxby

Her Majesty the Queen’s Personal Jewellery Collection has been put together over the last 200 years and includes high profile pieces.

In this painting by Richard Stone, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is wearing the Greville Tiara, and the Queen Alexandra Wedding Gift Necklace. Join Viv Haxby as she tells the stories behind Her Majesty the Queen’s Personal Jewellery Collection.

The collection – comprising tiaras, necklaces, bracelets, earrings and brooches – has been put together by six queens from the consort of King William IV to our current Queen. Viv will tell us about the taste of each of the women and their contributions, focussing on the pieces that have been worn frequently, or to high profile events and the pieces that the Queen has lent to other members of the Royal Family. In light of the recent death of the Duke of Edinburgh she will look particularly at gifts to the Queen from her husband.


Friday 18 June 11am (London time)

NEW Artists’ Covent Garden: how art hit the big time

YOUR GUIDE: Sarah Ciacci

Discover the significance that 18th century Covent Garden had upon British Artists with Art Historian and Blue Badge Guide, Sarah Ciacci.

Today we will go back to the 18th century and take a stroll around the artistic hub of Covent Garden. We will find out why important artists such as William Hogarth and Joshua Reynolds chose the area as a fashionable address; how geographically Covent Garden placed them in between patrons in the Royal Court at Westminster and the wealthy merchants of the City of London; and how local craftsmen such as frame-makers, colourmen and printers supported artists’ work.

We will also learn how the 1700s was a century in which British Artists became much more ambitious and campaigned for the first public exhibitions and art schools, which led to British art hitting the big time.

Sarah Ciacci is an art historian and accredited arts society lecturer.

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