Toni's Talks

I'm an experienced speaker with many topics to interest your group - for special events I can dress in authentic period costume too.

...from a 20 minute chat to a 20 week course...

Everyday life in medieval England is my specialist subject:

Medieval Housewives*

This is my most popular talk, with anecdotes, recipes and shopping, we look at the lives of ordinary folk in the middle ages, including the instructions given by an elderly husband to his new young wife, plus child care, food and fashion.

Other popular Medieval talks include:

  • 1066 and all that - King Harold II, the last Saxon King
  • Hereward the Wake - Mythical Legend or freedom fighter?
  • Magna Carta 1215-2015 - 800 years of democracy
  • Medieval Merchants & Men of Trade - some well known names from the middle ages
  • Everyday Life in Medieval London* - how people lived in our biggest city
  • Medieval Medicine* - a fascinating and frightening subject
  • Medieval Food - what did people eat before potatoes, tomatoes and chillies

*This is also the subject of one of my books

  • Christmas in the Middle-ages - Christmas without turkey, roast potatoes, crackers, cards and Father Christmas
  • The Apothecary’s Tale - what was in the medieval chemist's' shop?
  • Medieval Gravesend - despite what you think the name dates from before the Doomsday book, look back to Anglo-saxon Greivsham and the surrounding parishes
  • Richard III – King of Controversy* - he reigned for little more than two years but his reputation has stretched over 500 years
  • Manuscripts, Scribes and Illuminators - writing and books, before Caxton

*This is also the subject of one of my books

Tudor and Elizabethan Subjects:

  • Henry VIII - Hero or Villain? Henry had more reasons than lust to divorce and behead, could he have been a hero, or was he just a villain?
  • 'Bloody Mary' Tudor - England's first Queen regnant, why did she marry a Spanish king?
  • Tudor & Stuart Dining
  • Tudor Medicine
  • Princess Pocahontas - this Disney Princess had a much more important role in American history - meet the real woman

Victorian Britain

  • Mrs Beeton’s Victorian Christmas* - or
  • Mrs Beeton's Summer Picnics (These tasty talks come with a selection of cookable recipes!)
  • Murder Most Foul the gruesome tales of crime, punishment and Policing in Victorian Britain
  • They Dared to be Doctors* the fascinating story of the first Victorian ladies to succeed in a man’s world…
  • Votes for Women a talk about the struggle for women’s rights and the Suffrage movement
  • Charles Darwin - his life, voyages and his 'Origins of Species'

*This is also the subject of one of my books

Other subjects:

  • Adventure in Writing - my "author talk" about writing fiction and the creation of my Seb Foxley medieval murder mystery series.
  • Food in Roman Britain
  • 17th century Men of Science the rivalry between Isaac Newton and Robert Hooke (for a longer talk I can include Boyle & Halley too)
  • The Apothecary’s Garden - the history of natural remedies up to modern times
  • A Guided Tour of Historic Rochester (either on foot, including refreshments if you wish, or fully illustrated)
  • Restoration London 1660-1785
  • Restoration Rochester (including the Dutch raids on the Medway)
  • The History of Colours (including colours in nature, art and history)
  • Edith Cavell WW1 Spy? Executed in Belgium in 1915 was she a spy or an inspiration to us all?

Sebastian Foxley

  • Ration-book Britain - how we lived in the 40s & 50s and how the modern housewife was taught to look after her husband!

All my talks come with a fully illustrated presentation, but can be given without illustrations if preferred. They are based on many years of my personal research; I bring all my own equipment and have personal liability insurance.

Many of the talks can be presented in period dress to - to see me in costume visit my 'Living History Gallery' here

To get in touch please click here

You can find me and other available speakers listed here: www.diannemannering.co.uk

or here www.thespeakerslist.com

Reviews:

May 2017: On behalf of the Rosewood Ladies Club I would like to thank you for a fascinating talk tonight about the life of a medieval housewife.

Thank you for a very thought provoking evening.

May 2017: Richard III Society Gloucester Branch Thanks for providing such a wonderful day full of information and interest. Feed back from attendees has been excellent and everyone spent a superb day enjoying the wealth of information you packed into the occasion.... an absolute “treat” - thanks for making our Study Day so special.

March 2017: NWKent Family History Society. Thank you so much for coming to talk to us... we would like to thank you for a very enjoyable and entertaining talk. We appreciated you and your husband dressing in 1950’s costume...

It was interesting to be reminded of the rations we were allowed during the 2WW and after, it made us appreciate how well families coped. Some members told me of how much they enjoy reading your books, thank you for bringing them with you.

Once again, many thanks for coming to talk to us and we look forward to seeing you again.

December 2016: On behalf of the Goudhurst & Kilndown History Society I would like to thank you for your most entertaining and informative talk to us last night. We all enjoyed the talk