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Event List Calendar

09/05/2021

Secrets of MI5 – Zoom uncovering of the secret state

Next talk-tour: Sun 9 May 2021, 11am UK time.
Meet: On your computer!
Booking: Please press here to book with Eventbrite.
Cost: £8.50

It’s a nasty world out there. Spies, spooks, saboteurs, stooges and stool pigeons.

But here in MI5, the government’s intelligence wing devoted to internal security, we’re on the look-out for terrorist plots, assassinations of politicians and Trotskyite groups out to smash the system. You’ve seen Spooks? Pah, pussies! To devise this tour our guides had to break into Thames House, home of MI5, when no one was looking, photocopy all the tasty documents, make our exit without being noticed, take said intel to a secret location to learn it, remember it, eat it and then burn it.

We can however tell you what they don’t want you to know about:

• The assassination attempt on your favourite prime minister and how it was foiled.

• The chain of cold war installations stretching from London to Glasgow, built above the costly and useless atomic bunkers.

• How Harold Wilson was drive into paranoia by the bugs at No. 10 and quit in a mad rage.

• The assassination attempt on a legendary foreign secretary, suddenly called off at the last minute.

• How a king was removed from office before being crowned because he was a security risk.

…and a host of other missions; some successful, some not so.

So join the man from MI4 (one down from MI5), briefed by legendary tour guide and Penguin author Ed Glinert, to discover what the security services wished they knew.

Start: 09/05/2021 11:00 am
End: 09/05/2021 12:15 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
Google Map
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.50 or the equivalent in roubles

09/05/2021

Secrets of MI6 – Zoom uncovering of the secret state

This talk-tour: Sunday 9 May 2021.
Meet: On your laptop!
Booking: Please press here to book with eventbrite.

James Bond isn’t available to take this tour into the secret world of MI6, so you’ll just have to make do with our man in the Foreign Office with the poisoned fountain pen and bugged bow-tie.

It’s a nasty world out there. Spies, spooks, saboteurs, stooges and stool pigeons.

But here in MI6, the government’s intelligence wing devoted to Britain’s interest overseas, we’re on the look-out for terrorist plots, attempted assassinations of politicians and royals, and enemy agents who speak like Hood in Thunderbirds.

You’ve seen Spooks? Pah, pussies! To devise this tour, our guides had to break into Vauxhall Cross, home of MI6, when no one was looking, photocopy all the tasty documents, make our exit without being noticed, take said intel to a secret location to learn it, remember it, eat it and then burn it.

We can however tell you what they don’t want you to know about:

• How a maths whizz single-handedly won the War despite MI6’s best efforts.

• Colonel Dansey’s “Z” network of spies.

• How a Bulgarian dissident was eliminated by a poisoned umbrella in the middle of London.

• The MI6 chief who cut off his own leg to rescue his son after a car crash.

• The vital supplies you’ll need if you find yourself held a prisoner-of-war.

Heed the advice of James Bond. If you are going to order a dry martini, shaken not stirred, make sure you add a Scotch Egg or you won’t get served.

So join the man from MI7 (one up from MI6), briefed by legendary tour guide and Penguin author Ed Glinert, to discover what the security services wished they knew.

Start: 09/05/2021 2:00 pm
End: 09/05/2021 3:15 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.50

10/05/2021

Worsley & the Bridgewater Canal: official Zoom tour the day before the new RHS Gardens open!

Zoom tour May 2021: Monday 10 May 2021, 5.30pm.
This is the day before the RHS Gardens open.
Meet: on your computer!
Booking: Please press here to book with Eventbrite.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picturesque black-and-white timber-framed waterside buildings, Britain’s first man-made waterway, and underground canals running through the Delph, a dramatic 52 mile system of caves and tunnels.

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Worsley is one of the wonders of the North-West and one of the birthplaces of the industrial revolution. It was here in 1761 that the local landowner, the Duke of Bridgewater, and his ingenious engineers, John Gilbert and James Brindley, cut Britain’s first man-made canal independent of the river system – the Bridgewater Canal– to ferry the Duke’s coal to Manchester.

We visit the village’s key sites (without daring into the deep and dangerous Delph) on our Worsley explorer. There’s the 1760 Packet House, redesigned in the Victorian era into an elaborate black-and-white structure, outside which the world’s first steamboat was built in 1780 – some thirty years before the better-known New Orleans vessels that cross the Mississippi first appeared.

Also on our tour, St Mark’s Church, designed by the grand Gothicist George Gilbert Scott; the Alphabet Bridge; the Nail House; the boatyards and the old village green.

Who knows? We may see one of the famous locals: Ryan Giggs or Russell Watson. How can so much be packed into so compact a locale?

And then it’s along the Canal (optional) to stretch our legs, to hear the history of this grand waterway, finishing at the Trafford Centre where there are one or two shops and a new tram line.

Start: 10/05/2021 5:30 pm
End: 10/05/2021 6:45 pm
Venue: Your computer!
Address:
United Kingdom
Cost: £8.25

14/05/2021

Manchester History on Zoom in the Morning: Chetham’s Library & Manchester Cathedral

This tour is on Zoom: Friday 14 May 2021, 11am.
Meet: on your computer.
Booking: Please press here to book with Eventbrite.

* Chetham’s: Europe’s oldest library, housed in Tudor buildings that were for nearly two hundred years a college of priests.
* Manchester Cathedral: an ancient place of worship that recently celebrated 800 years as the most spectacular church in the area.

Chetham's  Cathedral (Mcr) 1

And all around the site of the “Old Town” where Manchester grew by the rivers Irk and Irwell, and the Hanging Ditch.

This is a tour into the heart of mediaeval Manchester, replete with extraordinary stories. There was the Catholic priest dragged by heels from the prison to what is now the Cathedral. There was the story of Britain’s leading anti-slavery campaigner who was cheered here in the Cathedral for his beliefs before he set off for Liverpool where they tried to throw him in the Mersey.

We will leave no (mediaeval) stone unturned.

Start: 14/05/2021 11:00 am
End: 14/05/2021 12:30 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
Google Map
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.50

15/05/2021

Angel Meadow: Victorian Hell-Hole (on ZOOM)

Next tour is on Zoom: Saturday 15 May, 11am.
Meet: On your computer for this one.
For old-fashioned walking tours: Meet at: Victoria Station wallmap (not the window list of battles!) and end at the Marble Arch pub.
Booking for Zoom for 15 May: Please press here to book with eventbrite.

Journalist Angus Bethune Reach called Angel Meadow: “the lowest, most filthy, most unhealthy, and most wicked locality in Manchester…full of cellars and inhabited by prostitutes, their bullies, thieves, cadgers, vagrants and tramps.”

Was this yesterday? No, thankfully. He was writing in the 19th century when Angel Meadow was one of a number of notorious Manchester slums; probably the worst.

This is what proto-communist Friedrich Engels had to say about the locale in 1844. “The landlords are not ashamed to let dwellings like the six or seven cellars on the quay directly below Scotland Bridge, the floors of which stand at least two feet below the low water level of the Irk … utterly uninhabitable, [it] stands deprived of all fittings for doors and windows, a case by no means rare in this region, when an open ground-floor is used as a privy by the whole neighbourhood for want of other facilities. . . .”

A hundred yards on, at the end of Millow Street, stood “Gibraltar”. This was once described by the social commentator James Phillips Kay as the haunt of the “lowest” of the population. “The stranger, if he dare venture to explore its intricacies and recesses is sure to be watched with suspicion, on every side is heard the sound of the axe or knife…”

Okay, both those revered social commentators were writing many years ago, but go there now and it’s pretty grim, which is why we guide you around these atmospheric areas, converting the squalor and sordidness into scintillating stories. And we’ve not even entered Angel Meadow proper yet.

Have things improved? Yes, with much thanks to the Friends of Angel Meadow. When we’ve finished with all the terrible tales we deserve an ale or two at the Marble pub with its gorgeous tiles, magnificent ales and friendly atmosphere.

Start: 15/05/2021 11:00 am
End: 15/05/2021 12:15 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
Google Map
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.50

15/05/2021

Underground Manchester (on ZOOM)

SONY DSC

New for lockdown and beyond in 2021
Underground Manchester, the full tour, on Zoom.

 

Thank you, everybody, for making “Underground Manchester: The Full Tour on Zoom” so successful. Dates have been selling out quicker than we can put them up for sale!

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May: Saturday 15 May, 2pm.
Meet: on your computer.
Booking: Please press here to book with eventbrite.

This is the de-luxe Underground Manchester tour, taking you from the comfort of your living room into the city’s biggest WW2 air-raid shelter, through the subterranean canal, underneath the Cathedral and at last into the atomic bunker.

It’s the on-line version of what was for years the second most popular walking tour in the country, featured in the Manchester Evening NewsDaily Telegraph and on Granada Reports.

So, no longer do you have to don stout boots and descend several hundred feet into an air-less chamber filled with ankle-breaking boulders. It also means we can examine every interesting hidden nook and cranny without breaking sweat. Eureka!

It’s a weird and wild world below. Come with us and find out why!

 

Underground - skellington Underground 2Underground - me in the darkUnderground - group in transhipment dock

Start: 15/05/2021 2:00 pm
End: 15/05/2021 3:30 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.25

16/05/2021

The Ghosts of Wuthering Heights ZOOM tour

Next tour: is on Zoom, 11am, Sunday 16 May 2021.
Meet (Zoom): On your computer, of course!
Meet (walking tour):
Haworth Steam Railway Station.
Booking: Please press here to book with Eventbrite.

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It’s spring, but the time of the year is still perfect for an ethereal, eldritch, ghostly trail through the very heart of Wuthering Heights country.

We will saunter through hallowed Haworth on the trail of the Bronte family, stopping at the most disturbing locations to read aloud, in a chilly voice, the most disturbing extracts from Emily Bronte’s unsurpassable novel…such as this.

“…My fingers closed on the fingers of a little, ice-cold hand! The intense horror of nightmare came over me: I tried to draw back my arm, but the hand clung to it, and a most melancholy voice sobbed, ‘Let me in—let me in!’ ‘Who are you?’ I asked, struggling, meanwhile, to disengage myself. ‘Catherine Linton,’ it replied, shiveringly.

When we get to the main church we will be “beseeching the Lord to remember the patriarchs Noah and Lot, and, as in former times, spare the righteous, though he smote the ungodly”.

Eventually we will settle on the very edge of the wild and windy moors and to protect ourselves from the unholy spirits repair to the nearest hostelry.

For now, all this is on Zoom.

Start: 16/05/2021 11:00 am
End: 16/05/2021 12:15 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8.50

16/05/2021

Off to Brick Lane, London’s most exciting street – the Zoom tour

Next tour is on Zoom: Sunday 16 May, 5.30pm.
Meet: On your computer.
Booking: Please press here to book with eventbrite.

Brick Lane is the most exciting street in London, inheriting the mantle previously worn by Chelsea’s King’s Road and Regent Street.

It’s the street with everything:
* A mad manic market
* Vintage clothes shops
* Authentically independent coffee houses
* Ever-changing street art
* The best beigel bakery in the world in what was a Jewish ghetto
* The biggest conglomeration of curry houses in London where waiters rush out to grab potential customers
* Katz’s shop at No. 92 which sold only string – kosher string, mind
* The only building in the West that has been church, synagogue and mosque
* Rough Trade records
* A grand glorious brewery chimney
* A barber tastelessly called “Jack the Clipper”
* The former home of one of the Jack the Ripper team
* A terrible history of vitriol and violence (“verily this is a land flowing with beer and blood”…don’t worry, that was in the 19th century
* Even a mention in Salman Rushdie’s notorious 1988 novel, The Satanic Verses.

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Ed Glinert, author of “111 Places in the East End of London You Shouldn’t Miss”, takes you on a Zoom version of his ever-popular walking tour, from the Northern Heights in Shoreditch to the soft southern underbelly in Aldgate.

Start: 16/05/2021 5:30 pm
End: 16/05/2021 6:45 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: £8

17/05/2021

Southern Cemetery walking tour

Next walking tour: Monday 17 May 2021, 12 noon.
BookingPlease book on eventbrite by pressing here!
Meet
: Cemetery Gates (opposite James Hilton Memorials), 245 Barlow Moor Road (Barlow Moor Road Metrolink stop, 8 minutes walk away).
Please don’t Go To: The Crematorium, Nell Lane…

New Manchester Walks will take you around one of Europe’s biggest cemeteries, final resting place of some of the greats of Manchester history.

The guide is Ed Glinert, author of “London’s Dead” (published by HarperCollins), who has turned his attention to the graves and memories of Matt Busby, John Rylands, Joe Sunlight, Daniel Adamson, Tony Wilson and L. S. Lowry, as we explore Britain’s biggest graveyard.

Southern Cemetery (1)Southern Cemetery - Rylands graveSouthern Cemetery - Matt Busby Grave

 

Start: 17/05/2021 12:00 pm
End: 17/05/2021 1:45 pm
Venue: Southern Cemetery main entrance
Address:
Google Map
Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, United Kingdom
Cost: £11.50

17/05/2021

Beatles’ Liverpool Coach Tour on Zoom

Join the North’s most prolific tour guide, Ed Glinert, former Mojo Production editor and author of Fodor’s Rock ’n’ Roll Traveller books, on this “Beatles’ Liverpool” Zoom coach tour.
Continue reading

Start: 17/05/2021 5:30 pm
End: 17/05/2021 6:45 pm
Venue: Your computer
Address:
-, -, United Kingdom
Cost: 8.25
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