Wednesday, 18 May 2022

City of the Beast The London of Aleister Crowley

7.45 Tuesday 5 July 2022

£5 / £2 Concessions Advance Booking

The Miller, 96 Snowsfields, London Bridge, London SE1 3SS

Tube and Rail: London Bridge

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I dreamed I was paying a visit to London. It was a vivid, long, coherent, detailed affair of several days, with so much incident that it would make a good-sized volume.

Aleister Crowley


Philip Baker combines biography and pyschogeography to trace Aleister Crowley's life in London.

Crowley had a love-hate relationship with London, but the city was where he spent much of his adult life, and it was the capital of the culture that created him: Crowley was a post-decadent with deviant Victorian roots in the cultural ferment of the 1890s and the magical revival of the Golden Dawn.

Not a walking guide, although many routes could be pieced together from its pages, this is a biography by sites. A fusion of life-writing with psychogeography, steeped in London's social history from Victoria to the Blitz, it draws extensively on unpublished material and offers an exceptionally intimate picture of the Great Beast.

Phil’s book, City of the Beast The London of Aleister Crowley, follows Crowley as he searches for prostitutes in Hyde Park and Pimlico, drinks absinthe and eats Chinese food in Soho, and find himself down on his luck in Paddington Green—and never quite losing sight of the illumination that drove him: “the abiding rapture,” he wrote in his diary, “which makes a 'bus in the street sound like an angel choir!”


City of the Beast The London of Aleister Crowley will be available on the night.

Phil Baker’s other books include The Dedalus Book of Absinthe, a biography of Dennis Wheatley, 'The Devil is a Gentleman, Austin Osman Spare: The Life & Legend of London's Lost Artist and critical works on Samuel Beckett and William Burroughs. He lives in London.

7.45 Tuesday 5 July 2022

£5 / £2 Concessions Advance Booking

The Miller, 96 Snowsfields, London Bridge, London SE1 3SS

Tube and Rail: London Bridge

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England on Fire: A Visual Journey through Albion’s Psychic Landscape

7.15pm Tuesday 28 June 2022 

£12 / £7  concessions (Advance tickets)

Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

Tube: Holborn

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'....magic and mazes, ghosts and gardens, shipwrecks and cities. '



Mat Osman (founding member of Suede, author of The Ruins) and world-renowned image hunter Stephen Ellcock discuss with Cathi Unsworth (and some special guests) the anarchic magic of their collaboration England on Fire. Here you will find depictions of ancient trackways, chalk carvings and standing stones, of animal-masked community rituals, of streets set ablaze in protest, of occult dreams and psychedelic prophecies.

Forget the tired gallery of lords and ladies, forget the tall ships and haywains. These images cut to the heart of England’s psychic landscapes to portray an Albion unhinged, where magic and rebellion and destruction are the horses to which the country is hitched. On these fabled shores we are all castaways.

Mat and Stephen explore magic and mazes, ghosts and gardens, shipwrecks and cities. These poetic renderings of a spectral isle, together with Stephen’s hallucinatory visual journey, reclaiming Albion as an eternally inspiring and anarchic domain - an England on fire.

Joining Mat, Stephen and Cathi to discuss their work will be Ben Edge, co-curator of the recent excellent Ritual Britain exhibition at St Pancras, ceramicist to fairyland and further Claire Partington and artist of the uncanny Dan Hillier who supplied the cover illustration, Fount, for England on Fire

England on Fire: A Visual Journey Through England's Psychic Landscape will be available on the night. It contains over 200 images by artists ranging from William Blake, J.M.W. Turner and Samuel Palmer to Paul Nash, Louis Wain, Bill Brandt, Derek Jarman and Ithell Colquhoun to present-day visionaries such as Paula Rego, Cathy de Monchaux, George Shaw, Jamie Reid, Matt Collishaw, Tacita Dean, Lina Iris Viktor, Yinka Shonibare, Nick Waplington, Dan Hillier, Nicola Tyson, Sutapa Biswas and Chila Kumari Burman. The mind-blowing selection of images is accompanied by short texts by Mat Osman.

7.15pm Tuesday 28 June 2022 

£12 / £7  concessions (Advance tickets)

Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

Tube: Holborn

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The Founding of the Ghost Club

7.45pm Tuesday 21 June 2022

We are really sorry but, due to the tube strike, we are postponing this talk. We hope to bring Roger and his talk back from the beyond in the autumn. All ticket holders will be refunded. 

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The Ghost Club is one of the oldest organisations in the world associated with psychical research. It was founded by William Stainton Moses and AA Watts in 1882 and ran as a private gentlemen’s club until 1936, dedicated to telling “true” ghost stories. Members and visitors included Sir Laurence Oliphant, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, WB Yeats, Egyptologist Ernest Wallis Budge and colonial administrator Sir Harry Johnston. Its members, alive or dead, were counted as members.

Gothic specialist Prof Roger Luckhurst of Birkbeck, University of London, has been exploring the Ghost Club’s archives and minute books, and reveals what they got up to in their early meetings as a club, and their overlap with the Society for Psychical Research.



7.45pm Tuesday 21 June 2022

We are really sorry but, due to the tube strike, we are postponing this talk. We hope to bring Roger and his talk back from the beyond in the autumn. All ticket holders will be refunded. 

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Tuesday, 10 May 2022

William Blake and Heaven and Hell (with Puppet William Blake)

Presented with Rewierding:

Statler and Waldorf from The Muppets meet the Ancient of Days.

7pm doors Tuesday 7 June 2022

£5 / £3 Concessions Advance Booking

The Miller, 96 Snowsfields, London Bridge, London SE1 3SS

Tube and Rail: London Bridge

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The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

The Marriage of Heaven and Hell is one of William Blake's most extraordinary works - at times outrageous, radical, heretical, profound, bewildering and very funny. Come and join John Higgs - the author of William Blake Vs The World - for a reading of this magnificent little book, as he attempts to understand both the text and what it reveals about William Blake himself.

John Higgs is a writer who specialises in finding previously unsuspected narratives, hidden in obscure corners of our history and culture, which can change the way we see the world. In the words of MOJO magazine, “Reading John Higgs is like being shot with a diamond. Suddenly everything becomes terrifyingly clear”.

William Blake Vs The World will be available on the night via The Word Bookshop.


Puppet William Blake

Myra Stuart channels the wisdom and weirdness of ages through cuddly fleece. Expect Statler and Waldorf from The Muppets meet the Ancient of Days.

Blakeogeographer

Irish poet and Blakeogeographer Niall McDevitt will tell the story of Blake doing an 'anorak psychogeographical recce' in Southwark, as well as reading from Blake and reciting an original poem inspired by The Marriage of Heaven and Hell.

'Savagely witty' -Heathcote Williams.

Niall McDevitt is a poet and Blakeogeographer. He does astonishing things with place, poetry and the past. Niall is the author of three collections of poetry, b/w (Waterloo Press, 2010), Porterloo (International Times, 2013) and Firing Slits, Jerusalem Colportage (New River Press, 2016).





Presented with Rewierding:

7pm Tuesday 7 June 2022

£5 / £3 Concessions Advance Booking

The Miller, 96 Snowsfields, London Bridge, London SE1 3SS

Tube and Rail: London Bridge

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Scurrilous Satire: Political Cartoons Past and Present

 7.45pm Tuesday 31 May 2022

£5 / £3 Concessions 

Advance tickets

The Bell, 50 Middlesex Street, London E1 7EX.

Train and Tube: Liverpool Street.

Tube: Aldgate, Aldgate East

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In the 18th and 19th centuries artists like William Hogarth, James Gillray and George Cruikshank created political and social satire, often with blatant rudeness, to ridicule the high and mighty and to highlight social issues. In a highly-illustrated talk award-winning political cartoonist Martin Rowson (the Guardian etc) discusses their work and shows how they have inspired his own scathing and often extremely graphic work.

In a full-page editorial in 2017, in response to one of his Guardian cartoons, the Daily Mail denounced him and his work as “disgusting, deranged … sick and offensive”. Not for the faint-hearted! 

 7.45pm Tuesday 31 May 2022

£5 / £3 Concessions 

Advance tickets

The Bell, 50 Middlesex Street, London E1 7EX.

Train and Tube: Liverpool Street.

Tube: Aldgate, Aldgate East

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A History of Delusions

7.15pm Wednesday 25 May 2022 

£8 / £5  concessions (Advance tickets)

£5 Live Stream (Tickets)

Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

Tube: Holborn

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The brain can misfire in extraordinary ways…


Where do delusions come from and what do they mean? For centuries, delusions have been dismissed as something for doctors to sort out behind closed doors. But delusions are more than just bizarre quirks: they hold the key to collective anxieties and traumas.

The King of France – thinking he was made of glass – was terrified he might shatter…and he wasn’t alone.

After the Emperor met his end at Waterloo, an epidemic of Napoleons piled into France’s asylums.

Throughout the nineteenth century, dozens of middle-aged women tried to convince their physicians that they were, in fact, dead.

For centuries we’ve dismissed delusions as something for doctors to sort out behind locked doors. But delusions are more than just bizarre quirks – they hold the key to collective anxieties and traumas..

Based on the Radio 4 series of the same name, Victoria Shepherd’s book A History of Delusions is a groundbreaking history which uncovers stories of delusions from medieval times to the present day. 

Victoria Shepherd conceived and produced the ten-part series A History of Delusions for BBC Radio 4. She has produced scores of documentaries and major strands for BBC Radio 4. She holds an M.A. in creative writing from the University of East Anglia.

7.15pm Wednesday 25 May 2022 

£8 / £5  concessions (Advance tickets)

£5 Live Stream (Tickets)

Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

Tube: Holborn

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