Programme Announced For Big History Weekend

LIVERPOOL historian Ken Pye and St George’s Hall Liverpool have announced the full programme of guest speakers for this year’s World Heritage Big History Weekend. The two-day event takes place on Saturday 29 April and Sunday 30 April in St George’s Hall between 10am and 5pm on both days with a series of eight talks by special guest historians. Saturday’s guest speakers include Ken Pye who will focus on Liverpool’s renaissance from a fishing village to a major port on the world stage. This fully illustrated talk will tell how Liverpool lost, but then found its way again, to become re-born as the World Class City it was always destined to be. Ken says his audience should be prepared to “Be inspired! Be very, very inspired!” Steve Binns MBE will host Should Liverpool Have Built St George’s Hall? Steve poses the question, and has some interesting and varied answers. Looking for the Fourth Beatle – The Search for The Beatles’ 18 Drummers is presented by David Bedford. Yes, you know about Ringo Starr, and probably Pete Best and a couple of others. But can you name 18 drummers who played with the group from The Quarrymen to The Beatles? The Local History Question Time Panel comprising of Ken Pye, Ian Murphy, Steve Binns MBE and Richard MacDonald will give audience members the chance to pose their local history questions to a panel of expert historians. Dean Johnson will be treating the audience to his talk – The Lost Everest Mountaineers of Birkenhead. In words and music, the story of George Mallory and Sandy Irvine… Did they conquer Everest before Hilary and Tensing? Gavin Chappell kicks things off on Sunday with the unique story of the Wirral Smugglers. The talk will cover the fascinating story of the communities of smugglers that plagued the Wirral coats during the 17th and 18th centuries, on both the Dee and the Mersey. Ken Pye returns for day two with Curious and Amazing Tales of Merseyside. This talk will be a mixture of funny, fascinating and historically accurate tales from across the City. Claire Moorhead will present the story of Joseph Williamson and his subterranean excavations in Tunnels of Joseph Williamson at Edge Hill in Liverpool and Spencer Leigh will dive into the history of The Cavern Club with 60 Years of The Cavern. Bringing an end to proceedings will be Gill Hoffs with A Tale of Two Shipwrecks. When the William & Mary wrecked in the Bahamas in 1853, Captain Stinson attempted to commit mass murder; when the White Star Line’s ‘Victorian Titanic‘ sank near Dublin a few months later, Captain Noble tried to save everyone on board. Tickets for the special guest talks and the Question Time panel event are £2 each. Admission is payable on the door, free entry for under 16s. The admission cost will support the restoration of the iconic Minton Tiled floor in the Great Hall of St George’s Hall Liverpool. More than 50 groups and societies will be exhibiting throughout the weekend including the Friends of Williamson Tunnels; Liverpool History Society; Liverpool Record Office (Central Libraries); Merseyside Polonia; and West Kirby Museum. Visitors to the World Heritage Big History Weekend at St George’s Hall Liverpool will also have the opportunity to discover and explore the iconic venue through  Privileged Guided Tours which will take in the Great Hall, Concert Room, Courts and Catacombs. Tickets for the tour are £3.50. Joint organiser Ken Pye from Discover Liverpool commented: “One of the undoubted highlights of the weekend is the exciting talks programme. Choose from the menu of entertaining and informative hours, each one presented by one of Merseyside’s most popular and respected expert historians.  From The Beatles to Smugglers; from the story of Liverpool’s rise, fall and Renaissance to Tales from The Cavern; and from Mickey the Chimp to Buffalo Bill, there’s fun and fascination for all.” Refreshments will be available to purchase from the Heritage Café. For more information visit www.stgeorgesliverpool.co.uk LISTING INFORMATION Event: World Heritage Big History Weekend Date: Saturday 29 April / Sunday 30 April 2017 Time: 10am – 5pm Admission: £2 on the door Tickets: £2 Guest Talks / £2 Question Time / £3.50 Tours – tickets can be purchased on the door or bought in advance from St George’s Hall Heritage Centre