Tuesday, 10 November 2009

The London History Festival

History Today contributor Tristram Hunt writes today in the Guardian on the Staffordshire Hoard and the importance of it being sited permanently in what was once Mercia (ie the West Midlands and Staffordshire). He appeals to the wealthy burghers of the regions (yes, they do still exist, despite recession and the collapse of manufacturing in the region) to put their hands deep in the pockets and give the Hoard a home worthy of its historic importance:
‘ Those Black Country industrialists, Staffordshire landowners, Sutton Coldfield professionals and Birmingham business people need to find their inner Anglo-Saxon. For what the hoard reveals is that their seventh-century forebears, those righteous conquerors and wealthy warlords, were determined to use their prosperity to support art, crafts and design. These treasures, with their eagle miniatures, biblical inscriptions and thousands of inlaid garnets, show a kingdom replete with affluence and cultural confidence. The West Midlands wealthy have an unprecedented opportunity to ensure that future generations have ready access to this incredible insight into their identity and heritage.'

Tonight, the BBC’s foreign correspondent David Loyn, who writes on Afghanistan in the forthcoming issue of History Today, is in conversation with Stephen Robinson, Stephen Grey and Colin Freeman, Chief Foreign Correspondent for the Sunday Telegraph (who was freed from the clutches of Somali pirates earlier this year) at Kensington Central Library. The distinguished panel will discuss the history of war reporting. It’s part of the first and very successful London History Festival which concludes on Thursday when I talk to Simon Scarrow, Patrick Mercer MP and Saul David about their recent forays into historical fiction.

Go to www.londonhistoryfestival.com for full details.
Tristram Hunt describes how Friedrich Engels financed the research behind his friend Karl Marx’s epic critique of the free market, Das Kapital, in No Marx Without Engels

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