Programme 2020-2021



9 septembre 2020
Soirée d’accueil et Large soif
An online welcome to our opening night and a Zoom chat in which members compare their tasting experience of a chosen French wine that we will tell you about beforehand. Stay at home with the car. We'll also explain the operating model for the coming series of talks.

14 octobre 2020
Cercle de lecture                                                                                   Elaine BELL
A Zoom chat in which members discuss their reading of Françoise SAGAN’s Bonjour Tristesse, first published in the 1950s and said to have paved the way for the permissive society.

11 novembre 2020
Haussmann et Paris embellie                      Hélène GUILLET et Philip McGRORY
Hélène et Philip vous emmènent dans le Paris de Napoléon III avec les grands travaux du Baron Haussmann pour l’embellissement de Paris.
Hélène and Philip take you back to the Paris of Napoleon III with the large-scale transformation of the city under the design of Baron Haussmann.

9 décembre 2020
Louis PASTEUR                                                                             Leeann McKEE

Pasteurisation of milk, and of course wine, the discovery of optical isomers, vaccines for rabies and anthrax - all of these were discoveries by Louis Pasteur. He was a polymath in the fields of medicine, chemistry and bacteriology. Was he however a fraud? Let's look at the major works of the "Father of Microbiology" with the hindsight of his recently discovered laboratory handbooks and find out more about this complex genius.

6 janvier 2021
Zoom live cook-in!                                                                  Patricia HARDIMAN
What better way to celebrate Le Jour des Rois / L'Epiphanie than to learn how to make a frangipane ‘Galette des Rois’?Participate in this online course and learn all about the traditional recipe and how to bake your own frangipane cake.
Now taste it!

16 janvier 2021
Nuit de la Lecture 2021 Members
Jeux, lectures et échanges sur la langue et la littérature françaises. Vous avez un texte ou une activité à proposer? Contactez-nous !
Games, readings and debates about French language and literature. Would you like to read a text or lead an activity? Get in touch!

17 février 2021
Le Salon de l’Auto                                                                          Jonathan LYONS
The bi-annual Paris motor show is not going ahead this October but Jonathan provides an historical retrospective on what has been the world’s biggest motor show. We know that many members were looking forward to this talk last year so here's another chance to get your engines revving!


24 mars 2021
Renaissance mystery                                                                           Ray LARGAN
Ray explores the mysterious death of King Henry II in a jousting contest. Was his death by Gabriel Montgomery an accident or murder? And what of the subsequent consequences? Intrigued? You will be!

14 avril 2021
L’Écriture inclusive                           Allison NEILL-RABAUX et Douglas McCULLOCH
Depuis son apparition en 2015, l’écriture inclusive est loin de faire l’unanimité. Mais qu’est-ce que c’est exactement, comment ça marche, et êtes-vous défenseur·e·s ou détracteur·e·s ?
Inclusive writing has divided French opinion ever since it was first discussed in a 2015 official report. But what exactly is l’écriture inclusive, how does it work, and are you for or against its use?


28 avril 2021
Eleanor of Aquitaine                                                                              Rachel TRACEY
Rachel looks to one of her favourite characters from the High Middle Ages and reflects on the long and turbulent life of Eleanor, Queen consort of France and England. A remarkable story, of a 12th century power player, mother of kings and queens, that continues to resonate in modern culture through many books, dramas and film.


19 mai 2021
A Cobber’s Echo: Peter CORLETT                                                         Felicity JORY
A talk exploring how experiences at the Battles of Fromelles and Bullecourt shaped Digger legacies, and the effects these have had on Contemporary Australian Art with reference to Peter Corlett’s sculptures ‘Cobbers’ and ‘The Bullecourt Digger’.

Mai 2021
Piquenique en blanc (avec distanciation sociale)                                              Members
Come and join together in person for a summer evening picnic in the park. Just like the Dîner en blanc the date and venue will be secret until nearer the time. Family and friends welcome. Please bring your own food and picnic rug and enjoy time relaxing together.
*Government Covid guidelines and weather may affect the format.


16 juin 2021
A virtual trip in the mountains                                                                  Henry McKEE
Just as important as English climbers in Switzerland is the role of English, Scottish and Irish mountaineers in France and in particular the French Alps. This talk covers the romantic poets visiting Chamonix in the 18th century through to the "tigers" who surprised the French climbing world between the 1950s and now. We touch on the Irish pioneer from County Carlow who, in 1861, first described the effects of greenhouse gases on global warming and the Scotsman who was the first to study the science of glaciers.


21 juin 2021
Fête de la Musique 2021                                                                                     Members
Join us online for this special event celebrated in France and around the world.Have you a musical talent that you would like to share with us? Or maybe a favourite French song that you would like to tell us about? Listen in and join in the conversation!


14 juillet 2021
Fête Nationale 2021                                                              Philip McGRORY
Philip curates a members’ playlist of songs and memories of France. Be sure to join in with your favourites and send us a video to say why!