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Talks and Trips

Talks and Trips 2023

25 Jan Pictish Stones by Dr Barbara Swann

22 Feb Making the Museum of Making in Derby

29 March Antarctic Heritage Trust by Camilla Johns

26 April Architecture of Lydiard House by Michael Gray 

24 May Chippenham Museum Collection of Prints by Mark Golder

28 June Ken Stradling and the Collection by Cleo Saunders

26 July tbc

6 July Celebrating Pearl Anniversary

23 Aug Anne Desnet her 40 years as an artist

27 September Dr Gill Clarke, on ex at St Barbe on female artists

25 October Richard Osgood

29 November Stonehenge Dr Susan Greaney

6 December Christmas meal



Kelmscott Manor Tour and buffet lunch April – October

London to visit an ex as suggested by Lesley Andrews

St Barbe September Female Artists ex

Banwell Bone Caves

Malmesbury Museum

Talks and Trips 2022
 1.    Talks for 2022

·       26th January – Neil Redfern, ‘The Art of Archaeology’                    

·       23rd February - Michael Gray on architecture of St.Marks.           

·       23rd March – David Dawson on the Assize Court as new Wiltshire Museum.                                                                                               

·       27th April – Dig Ventures Lisa Westcott-Wilkins

·       25th May – Sarah Finch-Crisp on Lydiard archives

Trip 9 June 6-8pm Sculpture exhibition at Quenington Old Rectory

·       29 June MN talk on ‘History of Building Listing’ in 2022 to commemorate 75th anniversary of Town & Country Planning Act.

·       27 July Kettle’s Yard

·       24 August David Thackray update on Mechanics Institute

·       28 September Lucy Abel-Smith, Quenington Rectory. 

Talks 2020
This year we have been unable to continue with our scheduled talks and trips because of Covid-19. I will keep the list of what should have happened so that we can pick them up next year we hope.
We are currently holding talks via Zoom, Friends receive an email link before the talk.
16 May Jeremy Holt on The Computer Museum
26 June  Juliet Wood 'From Response to Lasting Image'
15 July Jeremy Holt on Caspar David Friedrich note this is a Wednesday
6 August  Katie Ackrill and Mags Parker Art On Tour
27 August Nicola Cornick talking about Swindon before the Railway
17 September Michael Gray talking about The Stones of Swindon

      27.2.20 Prof David Manley talking about abstract painting this did take place.
      26.3.20 Jeremy Holt on the Computer museum via Zoom
         23.4.20 Gavin James Astrophotography tba
        28.5.20 Jon Ratcliffe Building that never happened in Swindon tba
        25.6.20 Gill Clarke on the Russell Cotes ex starting 11.7.20 tba
      23.7.19 Sarah Purvey on her work and exhibition 'Trace' tba

Trips 2020 all postponed except the trip to the Sculpture exhibition on 3 September

2019 Events-
 25 July 7.30pm 
International Tennis Art
A talk by Professor Ann Sumner

Thursday 26 September 7.30pm 
Stoen Age to Corinium Project
A talk by Amanda Hart

Thursday 31 October 7.30pm
A Traveller in Space and Time:Michael Ayrton
A talk by Justine Hopkins

 Thursday 21 November 2pm
Trip to Pembroke College, Oxford

Thursday28 and Friday 29 November
Railways and Landscapes
Ken White and Andy Binks in conversation

Thursday 12 December 7.30pm
Craft Matters
A talk by Isobel Dennis

 free lunchtime talks
Friday 18 January Gifted! a talk on the new exhibition
Friday 8 February a Ceramics talk
Friday 8 March talk on This Women's Work exhibition
29 March talk Artist and Model exhibition
5 April talk on David Bent's 'Out of the Box' exhibition

Friday 15 February 7pm 
Wine Tasting at Magnum Wine Shop
Tickets £15

Thursday 28 February 7.30pm
Wyvern Theatre: Modernist Gem or Brutal Eyesore?
A talk by Michael Gray

Thursday 28 March 7.30pm
Ken White and Andy Binks in Conversation

Thursday 12 April 3.30pm
A trip to Victoria Art Gallery, Bath
Tickets £10, own transport, meal after tour of the stores and galleries if you would like to do this.

Thursday 25 April 7.30pm
Threads in a Web
A talk by David Lomax

Thursday 23 May 7.30pm
Out of the Box
A talk by David Bent

Thursday 27 June 7.30pm
Acquiring Works for the National Trust
A talk by Emile de Bruijn

Tuesday 9 July time TBA
A Trip to the Dulwich Picture Gallery
with a talk by Curator of the exhibition, Gordon Samuel, featuring work from the Grosvenor School artists.

2018 Events

Thursday 26 July 7.30pm
Timeless Secrets- Ceramics, Collectors and Museums
A talk by Mike Yates

Tuesday 18 September 10.30-12.30pm 
A trip to Janet Boulton's garden £10 own transport (12 max)

Thursday 27 September 7.30pm
Cicatrix: Call and Response
Walk and talk with Katie Ackrill

Thursday 25 October 6.30-7.30pm AGM
followed by a talk by Jessy Price at 7.45pm
Witches foreign and domestic: English demonology in Restoration era Bombay

Thursday 22 November 7.30pm
Laughter and Loss: British Artists on WW II
A talk by James Russell
Tickets £10/£8 for this talk.

Thursday 13 December
A wine and cheese evening
Tickets £15

Thursday 8 February Wine Tasting
at Magnum Wine, starting at 7pm. Tickets £15 from the Museum and Magnum Wine.

Talks all held at the museum apart from the Kate Malone one, they cost £6 to members and £8 to non members.
 It will be possible to buy tickets online and at the museum soon

Thursday 22 February  7.30pm
The Cutting Edge of Modernity: British Colour Linocuts of the 1920s and 30s
A talk by Gordon Samuel

Thursday 29 March  7.30pm
Berlin, Beuys and the Bader-Meinhof: A beginner's Guide to Modern German Art
By Sophie Cummings

Thursday 26 April 7.30pm
Cellars, Towers and Tunnels
by Jon Ratcliffe

Thursday 31 May 7.30pm
50 Finds from Wiltshire
by Richard Henry

Thursday 28 June 7.30pm
The Dotted Line of Inspiration
by Kate Malone

Monday 9 April £30
Trip to London

Tuesday 15 May £30
Trip to Craft Study centre in Farnham

Friday 22 June £35 to include coach travel, entry to the garden and lunch
Trip to Sculpture Exhibition at Urchfont Manor

 2017 Talks

Thursday 26 October Peter Waldron: My Journey so Far 7.30pm

Thursday 9 November 
AGM and Social with an update by Dr Rod Hebden 7.30pm
at Swindon Dance

Thursday 23 November 7.30pm
Sarah Simmonds on the Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage sites
sponsored by Clark Holt, held at Swindon Dance.

Thursday 14 December 7.30pm
A Seeming Diversity: Sophie Cummings in Conversation with Janet Boulton

Free Lunchtime Talks:
14 July 'Paint me this way' Dr Susan Carr talks about her new exhibition.

28 July- 'The Lie of the Land' - introduction to the new landscape exhibition
11 August- 'Contemporary Arts Society' - the role of the CAS in helping public collections grow
18 August- 'Family Tour'-Peter Burgess' - a family friendly hands on tour of the ceramics collection
 25 August- 'The Lie of the Land' - tour of the landscape exhibition
1 September- 'Paint me this way' - Dr Susan Carr gives a tour of her portrait exhibition
6 September- 'Cathy Lomax' - a Wednesday lunchtime talk about this new exhibition.
29 September- 'The Lie of the Land and the Contemporary Arts Society.
11 October- 'Peter Waldron'- tour of this brand new exhibition to discover more about this important abstract artist and ask any questions you have about the works on display. Note this is also a Wednesday talk

 Our Talks
Generally these are held at the Museum and Art gallery on the last Thursday of the month at 7.30pm: doors open at 7pm.
 The cost is £6 for Friends and £8 for non members.
Tickets for our talks are now available to buy online at:
There is a new talks flyer for the second half of 2017, they will appear below soon. Meanwhile please look at the website.

Thursday 16 March 7.30pm
London Calling, Punk and Life Drawing Class: A talk by David Ferry

Free Lunchtime talk Friday 24 March 12.30-1pm

Thursday 27 April 7.30pm
Archaeological Reconstruction Drawings with Jennie Anderson

 Free Lunchtime talk Friday 28 April 12.30-1pm

Thursday 25 May 7.30pm
The Bishop Otter Collection with Professor Gill Clarke

 Free Lunchtime talk Friday 26 May 12.30-1pm

 Free Lunchtime talk Friday 23 June 12.30-1pm

Thursday 29 June 7.30pm
Order from Chaos: Behind the Scenes at SMAG by Stefanie Vincent

 2017 Talks held:

Wednesday 15 February 7.30pm at Swindon Dance, Town Hall, Regent Circus SN1 1QF
Christopher le Brun in conversation with Sophie Cummings


These will be bookable via our website soon, or email to reserve a place.

Thursday 11 May Depart Swindon 10am by the Planks car park
Madresfield Court WR13 5AH
Tickets £30 includes travel and entry ticket.

Tuesday 13 June departing 9.30am from Swindon
Hauser & Wirth, Bruton, BA10 0NL

Thursday 13 July departing 9am from Swindon
Watts Gallery GU3 1DQ
Tickets £40

 2016 Talks and Trips

These are held at the Museum and Art gallery on the last Thursday of the month at 7.30pm: doors open at 7pm.
 The cost is £6 for Friends and £8 for non members.
Tickets for our talks are now available to buy online at:

FREE Lunchtime talks with Curator Sophie Cummings 12.30-1pm in the Art Gallery:
Friday 14 October- Introduction to ‘From where I’m Standing’
Friday 28 October Kate Tryon Conservation
Friday 11 November Introduction to ‘Still Life’
Friday 9 December Introduction to Current Exhibitions

Evening Talks:

Thursday 24 November 6.30-7.30pm Note because of restricted seating due to the current exhibition, our AGM is being held at Swindon Dance, in the Town Hall.

Friends AGM followed by a talk at 8pm
'Planetary vistas- the landscape of other worlds' by Paul Murdin

Thursday 8 December 7.30pm
Talk 'Walking Naked' by Steven Pippin

Past Talks and Trips 2016

Thursday January 21st 7.15pm
There will not be a talk at the museum in January, but there will be a visit to the  Marlborough College Observatory, a talk by Gavin James plus a chance to see a collection of deep space astro photos. Please ring Linda on 07765050470 to book a place.

Thursday 25 February 7.30pm
Brightwen Binyon by Michael Gray, RIBA
On the life and work of Swindon town hall's architect

Thursday 31 March 7.30pm
'Private Passion, Public Face' by Mark Golder
Mark will be talking about Collecting ceramics and the Swindon Ceramics Collection.

Thursday 21st April 7-9pm
Eileen Cooper RA, Exhibition Opening (Friends only)
Drinks and snacks provided.
Please RSVP to if you would like to come.

Thursday 28 April 7.30pm
'Continuous Narratives' by Timothy Hyman RA
The painter, write and curator Timothy Hyman (b.1946) will speak about work - from his difficult experience of art school in the mid 1960s, to his eventual retrieval of human-centred imagery, often through observational drawing.

Thursday 12 May 7.30pm
'Hide and Seek' by Eileen Cooper RA
Eileen Cooper is a popular and engaging speaker who will talk with direct reference to her work on show.
Priority booking for Friends until 2.4.16

Monday 16 May
Trip to Roche Court, East Winterslow, Salisbury, SP5 1BG
Transport will be provided, details to follow.

Thursday 26 May 7.30pm
'The Great Bustard'
This wonderful bird is being reintroduced to the Salisbury Plain; we are being joined by a speaker from the Great Bustard Group.

Saturday 4 June 2.30pm
Trip to Fairford Church with a talk about the windows, and tea afterwards, costing about £5. Please make your own way there. A group of us are meeting in The bull, a pub adjacent to the church from 12.30pm.

Thursday 30 June 7.30pm
Talk 'John Singer-Sargent-The Aesthete' by Dr. Liz Reners

Saturday 9 July
Trip to Pallant House Gallery, Chichester
Leaving Swindon 9.30pm

Thursday 21 July 7.30pm
An audience with ceramicist Fenella Elms

Thursday 25 August 7.30pm
Q&A with Hadrian Ellory-van Dekker

Thursday 29 September 7.30pm
Talk 'Performance' by Jeffrey Dennis       

Tuesday 4 October 
Trip to St.Michael and All Angels, Marlborough College. Meet 11am

Thursday 6 October 
Wine tasting at Magnum 7pm

 Tuesday 18th October 2016, 7pm Museum talk, ticket prices and sales as for our talks
Alun Graves (Curator of Ceramics, V&A Museum) in conversation with Sarah Purvey, Jo Taylor and Claire Loder

Thursday 27 October 7.30pm
Sam Herman in conversation with Graham Cooley

 Tuesday 1st November 2016, 6:30pm Museum talk, ticket prices and sales as for our talks
Mark Golder in conversation with Patricia Volk MRBS and Mary-Jane Evans
Tuesday 2st November 2016, 6:30pm

2015 talks and trips

September-December 2015

Thursday 24th September
Trust New Art- living artists inspired by National Trust Places by Tom Freshwater

Wednesday 30th September at 10.30am
Trip to Rabley Drawing Centre (Friends only)

Thursday 29th October
Recent Excavations at West Kennet Avenue, Avebury   by Dr Nicola Snashall

Friday 6th November 12.15pm
A Tour of Heelis, Central Offices of the National Trust

Wednesday 18th November
Rabley Drawing Centre Friends return visit to SM&AG

Thursday 26th November
Friends of SM&AG AGM
Talk by Dr. Mike Pringle (Richard Jefferies Museum)

Thursday 10th December
Pre-Raphaelite Angels on High? by Madeleine Emerald

May -July 2015 Talks and Trips

May 28th  at 7.30pm Christine Sitwell from the National Trust on Discovering a Rembrandt

June 23rd at 7.30pm James Russell Eric Ravilious- A Life in Pictures with a follow up 

Trip to the Dulwich Picture Gallery on 10th July, secure a place by emailing

February talk was Jeremy York's time as a military attache in Poland 1988-92,

March 26th Sasha Ward's residency at Kelmscott
April 30th David Cuthbert on Cecil Collins

 March 9th meeting at 2.30pm to Bristol Museum and Art Gallery to see the Frameworks supported exhibition 'Reality Questioned' . See blog for write up of this trip.

September 2014
26th September Steve Marshall will talk about Avebury Waterscape arrive on the night, no advance tickets.

7th November after AGM at 8pm Dr Mike Pringle will give a talk on Remembering WW1 from the home front point of view.

28th Bryn Walters will talk about 'Roman Towns in Wiltshire'

 To attend talks, please phone the museum on 01793 466556 for tickets, buy them in person or come along on the night.

23.9.14 10.30am meet to visit Marlborough College
20.10.14 2pm meet at Devizes Museum with an hour’s talk by David Dawson; there’s a charge of £3.50 for this.

Also SM&AG have these 3 talks in October:
18.10.14 7.30pm Professor Smiles will talk about Turner in the West Country, there is a charge of £3.50 for Friends for this talk.
24.10.14 7pm Back to Nature- Landscape and Modern British art-this talk costs £4.50 and will be given by Sophie Cummings
31.10.14 7pm a Contemporary Arts Society talk, this is a discussion between Sophie Cummings and Marcus Quaife and is free of charge.

Earlier in the year we had:
28th of March Ralph Bates talked about the Lost Chalk Hill Figures of Wanborough.

 On 25th of April, we had Andy Binks talking about the Swindon Society, entitled 'The Swindon Society, gone but not forgotten'. 

30th of May talk was 'The Post Box Past and Future'.

 Friday 20th June, there was a talk by Mike Yates on 'The Rediscovery of Ralph Bates' note this talk isn't on the last Friday.

There was a lunch time talk given by Sophie Cummings, curator at SM&AG, about the next hang entitled 'About Face',  The talk was on Tuesday 8th of June between 12.30-1.30pm.


23rd September there was a trip to Marlborough College meeting at 10.30am at the church at the end of the High Street.

20th October there was a trip to Devizes Museum, meeting at 2pm with an hours talk by David Dawson

Advance notice that the exhibition 'Turner Watercolours from the West' will be with us from 15th of October until the 13th of December, there will be a talk about the exhibition given by Professor Sam Smiles on Saturday 18th October at 7.30pm entitled 'Turner and the West Country', bookings : 01793 466556.

There was a trip to Buscot House on Wednesday 4th of June.

On the 15th July  to the Ken Stradling Collection of ceramics at the Bristol Guild of Applied Art, 68, Park St, Bristol, BS1 5JY,