I am an experienced speaker, giving talks on various aspects of the Great War. I have lectured to the National Trust, at Western Front Association (WFA) meetings, local history groups, university classes, battlefield enthusiasts and schools. I also speak at after-dinner functions on request. In 2014 I travelled to the Swiss headquarters of petrochemical company INEOS to give a lecture to their executives. My newest talk, entitled ‘Beyond the Ridge: Canadian & British actions at Arleux, Fresnoy & Oppy, April – May 1917’ focusses on actions after the capture of Vimy Ridge in April 1917. I gave this talk at Wessex WFA branch in February 2016 and am giving it at other venues in 2017. I also spoke at April 2016’s Great War Forum Conference in Birmingham. Please use the Contact page to request more information on subjects covered, availability and rates.
- Friday 3 March 2017: ‘The Battle of Arras, April – May 1917’ at South Wales Branch WFA, The Fairwater Conservative Club, Ely Road, Cardiff. 7.30pm start. Details: http://www.powell76.talktalk.net/
- Wednesday 8 March 2017: ‘Beyond the Ridge: Canadian & British actions at Arleux, Fresnoy & Oppy, April – May 1917’ at Heart of England WFA, Warwick Arms Hotel, Warwick. 7.45pm start. Details: https://www.facebook.com/HeartOfEnglandBranchWfa
- Saturday 11 March 2017: ‘The Battle of Arras, April – May 1917’ at Wolverhampton WFA, 2pm arrival for a 2.30pm start. Details: http://wfawolverhampton.webs.com/where-are-we
- Tuesday 14 March 2017: ‘The Battle of Arras, April – May 1917’ at Cumbria’s Museum of Military Life, Alma Block, The Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria, CA3 8UR. www.cumbriasmuseumofmilitarylife.org. 6.00pm start
- Wednesday 10 May 2017: ‘The Battle of Arras, April – May 1917’ at Army & Navy Club, 36 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5JN www.ArmyNavyClub.co.uk Evening talk – time tbc
- Saturday 13 May 2017: ‘Beyond the Ridge: Canadian & British actions at Arleux, Fresnoy & Oppy, April – May 1917’ at Wolverhampton WFA, 2pm arrival for a 2.30pm start. Details: http://wfawolverhampton.webs.com/where-are-we
- Thursday 7 September 2017: ‘The Battle of Arras, April – May 1917’ at The Lit & Phil, 23 Westgate Road, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 1SE. http://www.litandphil.org.uk/ 6pm start.
I have lectured in French twice at the Carrière Wellington in Arras to a French audience on the Battle of Arras and have also spoken at various WFA branches, as part of the Eastbourne Redoubt Fortress & Museum Great War lecture series and at universities and professional institutions. I have lectured twice on the work of the La Boisselle Study Group at black tie functions held at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. A write up of my talk on “The Battle of Arras: April – May 1917″ is available HERE.
Testimonials received include:
“On behalf of the Trustees and members of the Wessex Branch WFA we would like to say what a superb talk you gave this afternoon. As always so much content, well researched and delivered. We certainly think you gave your audience something to mull over. Well done!” Martin & Judy Willoughby, Wessex Branch, Western Front Association
“Very many thanks for your excellent presentation – I think it deserves full marks! You presented your material clearly and audibly, using very good visuals to illustrate your commentary. Your maps were legible and easily read – something where many speakers fall down. Wisely you kept statistics to a minimum but used them to make your points. You established a good rapport with your audience and you certainly appeared very relaxed. It should have raised the profile of the battles of Arras and I hope it will have encouraged more people to explore the area.” Bridgeen Fox, Chairman Thames Valley Branch, Western Front Association
“The talk was excellent and really enthused the attendees, one third of which were non-ICE members. I received a lot of complimentary comments afterwards.” Andrew Culley, Institution of Civil Engineers South West
“Your talk was very well received by both staff and students alike, indeed some of the students have come to find me this morning to ask if we can arrange to come and volunteer at the site; a definite sign that the talk was delivered at the right level. I have to say that it was absolutely what we were looking for, it both enthused and moved the audience through the personal stories you used throughout. I would personally recommend your lecture to anyone who has an interest in the La Boisselle area, or indeed anyone who has an interest in history, a truly captivating talk by an inspirational historian!” Mr James Wilson, History Teacher, South Bromsgrove High School
“On behalf of the group, a very big thanks for the really first class talk you gave us. I have had a number of calls saying how much they not only enjoyed the talk, but how much new material they learned. You really did uncover some dark corners. I thought your presentation was terrific – not too much detail and very clear.” Charles Stuart, Farnham U3A letter of thanks following my talk, The Somme – 1 July 1916. A North-South Divide?