Northamptonshire Battlefields Society Speakers Programme 2020

All talks start at 7:30pm unless otherwise stated
Venue: Delapre Golf Centre, Eagle Drive, Northampton
Members: Free,  Non-Members £7.50

30 January
The Beauforts – Nathen Amin

Nathen published his biography of The Beaufort family in 2017, breaking new ground in the way that John of Gaunt’s bastard line was looked at, weaving together the stories of his various descendants. Come and hear about their controversial lives as they clung to their precarious position close to the centre of power.

27 February
The Preservation of the Eleanor Cross – Dr David Carrington

David is the founder and Managing Director of Skillington Workshop Limited, who recently finished the conservation work on the Eleanor Cross. He will share with us his insights into conserving Northampton’s nationally important monument. After so much campaigning and controversy it was wonderful to see the Cross finally unveiled in November 2019. The completion of the work has also raised many questions, so we expect this to be a very informative and popular event.

26 March
“Cousins in Anarchy”:  Stephen & Matilda’s Civil War – Matthew Lewis

Historical writer Matthew Lewis is back with his new book, covering the little understood period of the mid-12th century anarchy. The struggle between the two potential monarchs was a turning point
for medieval England. Many of you may know it better as the back drop to Ellis Peters’ well known “Brother Cadfael  Mysteries”

30 April
 Naseby: The Intelligence War – Phil Steele 

Phil is a Trustee of the Naseby Project. In this talk he will look at the days before the battle of Naseby and what each army knew about its opponents. It was a skilful game that led in no small part to the King’s defeat, as the Scout Masters of both sides tried to establish what their opponents were doing, – and where.

28 May
Like Father & Son? Warwick the Kingmaker and Edward IV – David Santiuste

David makes the case for the often overlooked Edward IV. Often only thought of as Richard III’s older brother, Edward was the most successful war leader of the Wars of the Roses, and it is about time for a thorough re-assessment of his life and times and his sometimes difficult relationship with Richard Neville.

25 June
Military Aspects of Medieval Welsh Poetry  – Dr Jenny Day

The Welsh Poets of the 15th century were the hit of the Edgcote Conference in 2019. Not many in the audience understood how rich and informative the poems from this period are, and also how much we can rely upon their testimony. Jenny is the expert on weaponry in Welsh Medieval poetry, so we are excited she is able to come and tell us more about this fascinating historical resource, often overlooked by more Anglo-centric historians. If you missed the Conference, be sure you do not miss this talk.

30 July
Northamptonshire and the Gunpowder Plot – Mike Ingram

Our Chairman, Mike, takes us through why Northamptonshire was central to the planning of the Gunpowder Plot, from its diabolical planning through to its bloody denouement. Come and hear about the Northamptonshire connection, from the Catesbys to the Treshams to the pubs and back rooms of the County.

August No talk

24 September
The English Knight in Battle, c1460: Arms, Armour and the Realities of Close Combat – Dr Toby Capwell

Toby is the Curator of Arms and Armour at the Wallace Collection in London. He is one of the World’s leading experts on medieval and renaissance arms and armour has published numerous books and
articles on many areas of the subject. His latest work, covering the topic of his talk, will be published shortly before he comes to see us.

29 October
AGM & talk (NB 7:00pm start)
An Evening with Philippa Langley

Philippa, the driving force behind the uncovering of Richard III’s last resting place, will share with us her unique insights into the ground breaking work undertaken by the team who made the discovery.

26 November
The Monstrous Regiment –  Graham Evans

Long before the modern debate about whether women should serve in the front line, some joined up anyway disguised as men. The Wild Rat’s editor looks at some of their amazing stories, as we find out why they joined up, where they fought and how they did, and did not, escape detection.


All information is correct at the time of publication but may be subject to changes.  Please keep in touch with the Society through our page on Facebook for the latest updates and news.