‘Travis Elborough writes about a wide range of subjects with originality, learning and charm. Atlas of the Unexpected (White Lion), one of his several books this year, is also seductively beautiful: an inspiring, dream-inducing guide to almost four dozen “haphazard discoveries, chance places and unimaginable destinations”, few of which are in Britain. ‘
Listen online here:
Event: The Joy of Maps, 11 October, 7.30 pm at The Gluck Studio, The Steyning Bookshop, 106 High Street, Steyning, West Sussex, BN44 3RD
‘Our October event will delight armchair travellers and intrepid explorers alike! As part of our celebrations for ‘Books Are My Bag’ week, we are delighted to welcome writer Travis Elboroughto Steyning, for a fascinating illustrated talk on the joy of maps, and the extraordinary and bizarre destinations to which they can lead us.
Travis will share some of the obscure and unlikely discoveries included in his two beautiful books Atlas of the Unexpected(White Lion Books, 2018) and Atlas of Improbable Places(Aurum books, 2016), spinning tales of human ingenuity and nature’s own masterpieces, and will muse on the power of unknown places, maps, and atlases to enchant and inspire us.’
Full info here:
Full details here:
Hear now on BBC i-player:
‘At a time of great political uncertainty and indeed when letter writing is almost a forgotten art, the collection demonstrates the vital and enduring importance of speaking truth to power.’
Online here too:
Event: Architecture-on-Sea: An Evening of Buildings, Stories and the Seaside, 29 September, 5.30pm, Deal Pier Café, Beach St, Deal, CT14 6HY
‘Architecture-on-Sea: An Evening of Buildings, Stories and the Seaside is an architecture-focused event which celebrates the installation of the ninth and last of the CHALKUP21 trail plaques on the Deal Pier Café building at the end of the refurbished Deal Pier.
There will be two speakers – Architect Charles Holland and writer and broadcaster Travis Elborough. The Deal Bookshop will provide a ‘pop-up’ bookshop stocked with books by Travis as well as others referenced in the talks on the architecture of East Kent.’
The event is free but to register and more details see here:
‘Unexpected, haphazard, unimaginable – but ultimately accessible experiences for intrepid humans today – Atlas of the Unexpected is a voyage to places both infamous and unknown; a compendium of places odd and enchanting, ancient and modern, touched by the certainty of chance and the oft-haphazard nature of what passed for discovery in the golden age of exploration.
Whether it’s the savvy invention of Vaseline at an American oil rig, or the serendipitous journey of a stray goat that led to the fortuitous discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls, Atlas of the Unexpected travels to the world’s most astounding and bizarre discoveries unearthed on our planet.’
Atlas of the Unexpected by Travis Elborough with maps by Martin Brown (White Lion Publishing 2018)
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Listen: The Rise and Fall of the Antique, BBC Radio 4, all the episodes now available on iPlayer to download
All the episodes of my BBC Radio 4 series The Rise and Fall of the Antique, are now available to listen or download on iPlayer here:
Listen: The Rise and Fall of the Antique, BBC Radio 4, five part series, first episode airs at 1.45 pm on Monday 6 August 2018
‘Travis Elborough charts the rise and fall of the antique, examining how, ultimately, the present always dictates which bits of yesteryear we deem worthy of collecting.’
Full details about each of the episodes here:
‘In an era where the liberties we often take for granted are under threat, Letters To Change the World is a collection of inspiring letters offering reminders from history that standing up for and voicing our personal and political beliefs is not merely a crucial right but a duty if we want to change the world.
Edited by Travis Elborough, the collection includes George Orwell’s warning on totalitarianism, Martin Luther King’s ‘Letter from a Birmingham Jail’, Albert Camus on the reasons to fight a war, Bertrand Russell on peace, Emmeline Pankhurst rallying her suffragettes, Nelson Mandela’s letter to his children from prison and Time’s Up on the abuse of power.’
Read more at https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/1116503/letters-to-change-the-world/#7dH9RvD3aRF1jHrj.99
Full details here:
Picture: On stage at Port Eliot for the Great Diary event with Irving Finkel, Simon Garfield, Caroline Catz, Michael Higgs and Connor McIntyre
I will be appearing at the Port Eliot Festival over the weekend of the 28th and 29th July.
Full details here:
‘A 90 – 120 minute walk with Travis Elborough: a revealing exploration of Battersea Park, from it’s inception, it’s radical history, and how it has become a ‘jewel’ valued by local people as well as developers.’
To book a place:
Picture by Lisa Jane Persky
Event: Wish You Were Here, 5th July, 11 am, Lecture Theatre, National Maritime Museum, Park Row, Greenwich. London SE10 9NF
‘Ranging from Jane Austen to Agatha Christie and to the Prince Regent via Billy Butlin and Brighton Rock, Travis Elborough explores our often masochistic love affair with the seaside.
Travis Elborough traces the development of the British seaside in order to examine how our ideas about health, wealth and happiness evolved. Our aspirations and snobbery, our attitudes to sex, our keen sense of fair play, our chequered relationship with national pride and our ability to laugh at ourselves have all been played out against a backdrop of stormy skies, pebbly beaches and sticks of rock.’
‘It is now seventy years since Columbia records launched their long-playing record in the summer of 1948. This revolutionary innovation ushered in the era of vinyl as the format for the music that would soundtrack so many lives.
First published ten years ago when the iPod ruled supreme and a vinyl revival seemed an unlikely prospect Travis Elborough’s The Long-Player Goodbye was immediately acclaimed as a brilliant piece of popular history that explored how vinyl changed our world.
The book became the basis for the BBC4 documentary When Albums Ruled the World in which he also appeared.
In Going For A Song Garth Cartwright charts the secret history of the UK record shop, from the age of the wax cylinder to the days of dubstep and the resurgence of vinyl and covering the whole colourful story of UK record-buying, from market traders selling music-hall 78s to ravers demanding Detroit techno.’
More info and to book for tickets here:
Picture with Gabriella Apicella @storytails
Event: A Walk in the Park talk at Wandsworth Heritage Festival, 6 June 6.45pm, Putney Library, 5-7 Disraeli Road SW15 2DR
• Please book in advance: Charlene.Coleman@gll.org or 020 8780 3085
I am doing a couple of events over the weekend, details and links below:
Going for a Song.
£5. Time – 18:00, Saturday 2nd June. Venue – Ryan’s Bar
As the LP record celebrates its 70th birthday we join journalist, DJ, music promoter and author of Going for a Song, Garth Cartwright, and social historian and author of The Long-Player Goodbye, Travis Elborough, on a good old rummage through the secret history of the UK record shop.
£5. Time – 15:00, Sunday 3rd June. Venue – Library Gallery
In an age when letter writing is dying out but our lives have never been more documented in blogs, Instagram and Facebook posts Travis Elborough (editor of the acclaimed Our History of the 20th Century: As Told in Diaries, Journals and Letters) and Margaret Willes (author of The Curious World of Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn) explore how diaries have illuminated London’s history and discuss what the social historians of the future might use to unravel life in our city in the early twenty-first century.
‘In the latest programme of the monthly series, Mishal Husain introduces dispatches from journalists and writers that reflect the range of contemporary life across the country. Andy Kershaw visits the most cluttered workbench he’s ever seen to discover how restoration work is going on a monument to British endeavour in speed on water; Jane Labous samples libraries in two counties to assess exactly what they have to offer; Adrian Goldberg indulges his sweet tooth among the burgeoning dessert shops of Birmingham; Ruth Alexander discovers how the town that’s trying to turn itself around – literally – is faring; and Travis Elborough discovers perestroika among sixty thousand tulips on the South Downs.’
Full details here:
Thanks to Kelly Buckley
Event: Being a Writer at the Essex Book Festival, Friday 23 March, 3pm, Metal, Chalkwell Park, Southend
Being a Writer – Travis Elborough and Helen Gordon – PART OF OUR MONTH-LONG POP-UP ESSEX WRITERS HOUSE – MARCH 2018′
‘The anthology Being A Writer is an inspiring assemblage of wit, wisdom and hard-won practical advice from some of the world’s greatest authors musing on the art of writing and how they came to define themselves as writers. Join its editors, the authors Helen Gordon and Travis Elborough, as they present an entertaining survey of the pleasures and pitfalls of the writing life from the time of Samuel Johnson and Grub Street to the age of silicon roundabout and Lorrie Moore.
Tickets: FREE – but booking essential
Picture: A Seance with David Seabrook, with Rachel Cooke, Neil Belton, Iain Sinclair and Paul Tickell at Burley Fisher Books
Pictures thanks to Anne Pigalle and Andy Miller
Event: Idler Dinner, with Rose Wilby, Travis Elborough and Hugo Martin, The Elgin, London, W9 1NJ, 28 February, 7.30 pm
‘This month, we are delighted to welcome comedian Rosie Wilby, who’ll be asking whether monogamy is dead, and author and anthologist Travis Elborough, who’ll be revealing the loucher side of the twentieth century via some of the diaries left behind. Singer-songwriter Hugo Martin will round off the evening with some songs from his new album, Six before a Seven.’
More details here:
I have a piece on Victoria Park’s model boating club in this new anthology of London writing also featuring the likes of Ali Smith, Iain Sinclair and Lynsey Hanley and edited by Claire Armistead.
More details here:
Full details here:
‘Discover why Victoria Park is loved by millions of its visitors every year and named ‘The Nation’s Favourite Park’ (2015/16) as local author and cultural commentator Travis Elborough takes you on a stroll to discover the park’s secret stories and hidden history. Travis’s recent book, A Walk in the Park: The Life and Times of a People’s Institution, a timely and loving exploration of green space was published in June 2016 to great critical acclaim.’
Spaces are limited – to book a place, please contact 0207 364 4504 or email firstname.lastname@example.org