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350th Anniversary of the Great Plague Festival

Friday, September 4 – Sunday, September 6, 2015

Plague Festival 07 (SMALL)

Join our three-day festival of music, drama, talks, walks, exhibitions, workshops and one climatic party celebrating London’s unshakeable spirit!

 

September 1665 saw the Great Plague of London claim more souls than ever before with thousands dying each week. 350 years later our pestilential festival will commemorate one of the capital’s most catastrophic events.

 

 

FULL PROGRAMME

 

Friday, September 4

 

10am – 10.30am Dead Cart Procession Minories, City of London

 

On the very date that the great plague pit of St Botolph’s, Aldgate was completed in 1665 a pox-ridden procession, complete with iconic dead cart, will walk to the historic church via the actual street where the dead cart drivers used to call “Bring out your dead”. There you will hear Daniel Defoe read extracts from his classic novel, A Journal of the Plague Year, and officially open the festival.

 

2pm – 3pm Open Platform Event Reading Room, Wellcome Collection, Euston

 

Come and watch our plague doctor examine and treat his patients and learn the stories behind some of the Reading Room’s fascinating medical artefacts. Infection guaranteed! (Admission free)

 

7pm – 9pm Plague & Pepys St Olave’s church, Hart Street

 

Dr Evelyn Lord, author of 'The Great Plague: A People's History', will be talking about the Great Plague and John Norton-Doyle, secretary of The Samuel Pepys Club and a distant relation of Samuel will talk about Pepys, followed by the great man himself, reading from his famous diaries at the very church in which he is buried. (Admission free. Refreshments from 6.30pm)

 

 

Saturday, September 5

 

10am – noon Children's Plague Doctor Mask Making Workshop Aldgate Rooms, St Botolph’s church, Aldgate

 

Children aged 5-11 and their parents are invited to drop in, learn about the times and the strange-looking doctor, and make their own plague doctor mask! Experienced children’s workshop leader Anna Blackman will lead the event resulting in a Procession of the Plague Doctors at noon! (Admission free but pre-booking only at: info@talesofplague.co.uk)

 

2pm – 4pm Tales of Plague Guided Walk City of London

 

Join our regular weekly tour - which focuses heavily on the Great Plague - as we lead you from Tower Hill tube, around the city’s ancient churches and plague pits, finishing near Monument tube. (£9.50/ 7.50 concs and pre-booking only at: info@talesofplague.co.uk)

 

7.30pm – 9.30pm Great Plague Concert - 'Music from a Tumultuous Time'

St Botolph’s church, Aldgate

 

Come and hear beautiful music from the courts of Charles I and Charles II as acclaimed early music ensemble, Chelys, will be performing on period instruments interspersed with readings from Daniel Defoe. Chelys’ debut CD will also be on sale. (Admission free. Refreshments from 7pm)

 

 

Sunday, September 6

 

2pm – 4pm Tales of Plague Guided Walk City of London

 

Join our regular weekly tour - which focuses heavily on the Great Plague - as we lead you from Tower Hill tube, round the city’s ancient churches and plague pits, finishing near Monument tube. (£9.50/ 7.50 concs and pre-booking only at: info@talesofplague.co.uk)

 

7.30pm – 10.30pm Pepys Party Hung Drawn and Quartered pub, Tower Hill

 

Samuel and Elizabeth Pepys are your hosts and Nell Gwyn the star attraction in an evening of merriment and song in this historic pub celebrating the city’s unconquerable spirit in seeing off the plague! Dressing up is optional and a snifter of port and a slice of cheese are complimentary on arrival. (Tickets are £6.65 each and pre-booking is essential at: info@talesofplague.co.uk)

 

 

From August 24 to September 6 St Botolph’s church, Aldgate will also be hosting our Great Plague Exhibition. The church is open on Mondays, 11am to 3pm, and Tuesdays to Fridays, 9am to 3pm. All are welcome.

 

 

Photo by Anne-Marie Sanderson