Previous Events

JULY 2016

Tuesday, 12 July, 2016     7:00 PM

The Old Operating Theatre and Herb Garret Fabulous Quiz Night!!!

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Test your knowledge on the history of surgery, medicine, and even the Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret with a multiple choice quiz! Join us for this historic one-time event!!! Laughter and chit chats guaranteed and refreshments will be served!

Let us know that you are coming! To make a reservation you can call us at +44 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Tickets £8.00/£6.00 concessions.


Tuesday, 19 July, 2016    6:00-8:00 PM

After-Hours Art SessionStillLifeWithASkull

 The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret is opening its doors to people who wish to practice art (with restrictions: i.e. no oil painting or acrylic) during our After-Hours Art Session. The museum offers a wide range of still-life displays associated with the history of surgery and medicine, not to mention the space itself which dates back to the 18th and 19th centuries.
Our After-Hours Art Session will include a talk and light refreshments! A3 paper and pencils will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own. Come and join us for an afternoon of creativity and fun!
Booking is required! To make a reservation you can call us at +44 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.
Tickets £10.00 adults/£8.00 concessions.

Thursday, 28 July, 2016        7:00 PM

War Is the Only Proper School of the Surgeon:Improvements in Surgery During WWI

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When Britain went to war in 1914, experienced surgeons were shocked at the wounds they saw.
This was a new pathology, the results of industrialised weaponry: high explosive missiles, machine gun bullets, shell fragments and shrapnel. As in wars today, blood loss was the most immediate danger to life, and dealing with it was a huge challenge. Injuries were also aggravated by infection from the bacterially contaminated farmland soil of the battlefields
In this centenary year of the Battle of the Somme, one of the bloodiest battles in human history, where around 42,000 were treated in the first week, this lecture will look at the strenuous attempts to improve the situation and developments made as the war progressed and survival rates increased.

Pete Starling is a retired Officer of the Royal Army Medical Corps and a former Curator and Director of the Army Medical Services Museum.
He has written and lectured on the history of military medicine, led tours to the battlefields of the First World War, and acted as medical advisor to several TV dramas including Downton Abbey and Birdsong.

To make a reservation you can call us at +44 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.


AUGUST 2016

From Garden to Garret: The Apothecary Tour

Wednesday, 3 August           2:00 PM

20160531_154749The walk meets at the herb garden of St George the Martyr, Southwark where the curator and Herb Archivist Karen Howell takes a tour of the herbs that were once used by old St Thomas’ and Guy’s Hospitals to make patients’ medicines.

Including tales of the fascinating plant folklore, mythology and the scientific properties and oils of the living plants the tour is of the garden site that contains the gate of the old Marshalsea Prison.

This guided walk around the St George’s Garden returns back into the Herb Garret to include a mini herbal workshop that provides hands-on dried herbs, and presents simple medicine making methods such as used to make rose water, pills and poultices.

The event provides a hands on opportunity for keen gardeners and historians to investigate the history of and discover some of the intriguing traditional pharmaceutical materials used at the old London hospitals.

To make a reservation you can call us at 020 71882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Tickets £6.50 adults/£5.00 concessions. Includes admission to the museum.

*This tour can now be booked as a group activity (min. 10 people).


Medical Anthropology: An Introduction

Tuesday, 30 August        7:00 PM

medicalanthroMedical anthropology is the study of systems of health and healing found in different societies. It examines how people in different cultural settings experience health and illness. Such experiences often reflect a particular community’s knowledge about sickness and misfortune in relation to broader belief systems and religious ideas.

This talk will briefly introduce some of the classic texts of Medical Anthropology and look at some contemporary debates in the field.

Michael Doolan is a lecturer in Social & Cultural Anthropology at Kensington and Chelsea College.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


Family Workshops

*Price included with museum admission, but booking is advised due to limited capacity. For more information visit our website.

The Victorian A & E HospitalA & E image

11 August                                   11:30 AM

16 & 23 August                            2:00 PM

What was it like to live in one of London’s poorest districts in the early 19th century? Worst still, what was is like to fall sick? A combination of dreadful living conditions, bad sanitation and the particular types of trade that operated in the area of Southwark caused many people to become unwell. This family event explores some of the methods of treating the ‘sick poor’ in the ‘old’ St Thomas’ Hospital: cure and care; or a gateway to death?

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Plague and Pestilence

4 August                                      11:30 AM

19 August                                     2:00 PM

Plague has been a familiar visitor to London ever since the Black Death in 1348 until the final major epidemic in 1665.

This fun family workshop explores some of the ‘obscure’ measures taken by people to prevent and cure the greatest of all pestilences. From pigeons to poultices, visitors will have the opportunity to make their very own ‘plague masks’.


SEPTEMBER 2016

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Scran and Grog: Naval Diet and the Health of the Seaman

Thursday, 15 September        7:00 PM

Maintaining a healthy diet on long ocean voyages has always been a problem. The  prevalence of the vitamin deficiency disease scurvy testifies to that. Nevertheless a wise naval commander knew  that if his crew was kept well fed and healthy there was a greater chance of naval success. The challenge was how to maintain fighting fitness and a healthy diet on a long ocean voyage and ward off the dreaded scurvy. Find out how the problem was tackled and how Jack Tar ate and drank maintain his fitness at sea.

Kevin Brown has been Trust Archivist and Alexander Fleming Laboratory Museum Curator at St Mary’s NHS Trust, subsequently Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, since 1989, having set up the archives service for St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington, London, England, in 1989 and having established the museum in 1993. He is also the author of many books, including Poxed and Scurvied: The Story of Sickness and Health at Sea (2011).

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


After-Hours Art Session

Medical Vanitas by MAWalker.Tuesday, 27 September      6:00-8:00 PM

 The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret is opening its doors to people who wish to practice art (with restrictions: i.e. no oil painting or acrylic) during our After-Hours Art Session. The museum offers a wide range of still-life displays associated with the history of surgery and medicine, not to mention the space itself which dates back to the 18th and 19th centuries.
Our After-Hours Art Session will include a talk and light refreshments. A3 paper and pencils will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own.
 Tickets £10.00 adults/£8.00 concessions.
To make a reservation you can call us at 020 71882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite

OCTOBER 2016

Chloroform and Cholera: The Life of John Snow

Thursday, 20 October        7:00 PM

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Chloroform inhaler. From John Snow’s Book on Chloroform, 1856.

How did a doctor, who came from humble beginnings, help eradicate pain and the ‘19th century plague’? At the time of John Snow’s birth in 1813, few would have predicted that his career could lead him to London and into the centre of medical advancement.

Determined to make his mark in the London medical world, he looked into details of diseases, conducted experiments and reported his findings. He attended an operation using the new invention of ‘ether’ in 1846 and turned his interest to anaesthesia. His most celebrated discovery in 1854, was when he traced the cholera outbreak in Soho to the Broad Street pump and removed the pump handle to stop it.

Hear about the incredible life of John Snow in this fascinating talk by Iris Millis, member of the John Snow Society, and Gareth Miles, museum officer.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


‘I gave birth to rabbits’: A Gallimaufry of Medical Misadventures in 18th Century England 

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Mary Toft giving birth to rabbits.

 Tuesday, 25 October 7:00 PM

Talk by Tessa Harris, author of the ‘Thomas Silkstone Mysteries’:
From the fantastical foibles of Mary Toft, a Surrey housewife with a fixation on rabbits, to a “Celestial” bed that moved to music and aided fertility; from a hanged boy who awoke on the dissecting table to a giant whose bones were boiled and are still on public display today. These, and many more curious tales, may seem far-fetched today but in the 18th century they were taken seriously not just by the common man or woman, but by high-ranking physicians and surgeons, too. The latter half of the 1700s witnessed a clash of superstition and science as the Age of Reason slowly dawned. From cradle to grave, author Tessa Harris looks at some of the most extraordinary medical misconceptions from this period and how a few men of vision began to modernise medicine.

Tessa Harris, born in Lincolnshire, holds a history degree from Oxford University. After four years of working with local newspapers, she set her sights on women’s magazines. She is regularly heard on local BBC radio and over the years has interviewed such people as Margaret Thatcher, Jeffrey Archer, Anthony Hopkins, Susan Hampshire, Alan Titchmarsh, Jackie Stewart, Boris Johnson, and Uri Geller. She lives in Berkshire with her husband and their two children. Tessa Harris on Facebook

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

COMPETITION
We are giving away a bundle of 3 of Tessa Harris’ signed book, more here!


 Days of the Dead – A Theatrical Mind-Reading Performance by Mike Coffey

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John William Waterhouse, ‘The Magic Circle’, 1886. (c) Tate Britain, London.

Saturday, 29 October       7:00 PM- 9:00 PM

Halloween, Samhain, Dia de los Muertos – there are few cultures that have not, at one time or another, celebrated, honoured and propitiated their dead at certain moments in the year. Outside of any specific date, many of these cultures have also engaged in regular communion with the departed, alluding to a somewhat more nuanced perspective on the nature of life and death. Witches, shamans, spiritualists, occultists, mambo priestesses – the officiants of these communions went (and still go) by a variety of titles and served a wide and disparate number of functions. At times the pedigree and credibility of these practitioners has been questioned, and their intentions subject to considerable doubt. Tonight a conjuror will examine some of the claims made by those that believe and the rebuttals presented by those that don’t. Your attendance would be most welcome.

Tickets £20.00 adults/£15.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Our apologies, but this event has SOLD OUT.


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A 1579 English image of a witch feeding her familiars.

Witchcraft: Women & Wickedness

Monday, 31 October     7:00 PM

This talk will discuss anthropological approaches to magic and ritual. Ideas from psychoanalysis will be used in an exploration of witchcraft as an historical and contemporary social phenomenon. Join Michael Doolan for this fascinating talk on witchcraft and women.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Our apologies, but this event has SOLD OUT.


November 2016

Culpeper Anniversary Lecture: Astrology, Magic and the Occult Sciences

 Tuesday, 1 November        7:00 PM

The famous herbalist, Nicholas Culpeper, was born 400 years ago on 18 October 1616. Although his Herbal is so widely known, few people today are aware of how radically different his brand of herbalism was from that of his contemporaries. Physick without astrology is like a “Lamp without Oil” was the maxim that under-pinned his writings and own medical practice. This lecture explores his astrological-herbalism, details of which were stripped from his Herbal just 12 years after it was first published, and delves into a strange world of plant-lore which has been lost to herbalism for centuries.

Julie Wakefield began specialising in herbalism at the Museum of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. As a staff member at the Old Operating Theatre she delivers talks on past uses of plants both in the Herb Garret and Southwark Cathedral’s herb garden. She is an active member of the Historic Herbalism Research Network and a university guest lecturer.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


L0014659 Two men placing the shrouded corpse which they have just Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images images@wellcome.ac.uk http://images.wellcome.ac.uk Two men placing the shrouded corpse which they have just disinterred into a sack while Death, as a nightwatchman holding a lantern, grabs one of the grave-robbers from behind. Coloured drawing by T. Rowlandson, 1775. Watercolour 1755 By: Thomas RowlandsonPublished: - Copyrighted work available under Creative Commons by-nc 2.0 UK, see http://images.wellcome.ac.uk/indexplus/page/Prices.html
Two men placing the shrouded corpse which they have just disinterred into a sack while Death, as a nightwatchman holding a lantern, grabs one of the grave-robbers from behind. Coloured drawing by T. Rowlandson, 1775. Wellcome Images.

Night of the Bodysnatcher

Thursday, 3 November        7:00PM

Throughout the 18th and early 19th centuries, more and more surgeons and their students wanted to dissect bodies to learn anatomy for themselves. But with legal supplies of corpses limited, where could they get their subjects from? Perhaps the city’s grave diggers could offer a solution….

A talk by specialist Kirsty Chilton about the rise of anatomy, the business of resurrection and the men who supplied the dissecting rooms from the burial grounds of London. Hear the tricks of their trade, the true stories of their gruesome work, in the Old Operating Theatre of St Thomas’ Hospital.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


From Ancient Greece to Modern London: Two Thousand Years of Post Mortem Examinations

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Mummy at the British Museum.

Tuesday, 8 November 6:30 PM

Celebrate National Pathology Week by joining award-winning pathologist Dr Suzy Lishman to learn about what examination of the body after death can reveal and how the process has changed over the centuries.  With the aid of a live model, Dr Lishman will describe what a modern post mortem involves and you will have the chance to examine some of the instruments used. While there will be no real blood or body parts, the content is not suitable for the very young or the very squeamish.

Part I from our Winter Anatomy Series 2016.

Tickets £6.50 adults/£5.00 concessions.

Book your tickets at 020 71882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


After-Hours Art Session


14525085_10154501240819030_1580727657523697078_oThursday, 10 November      5:45-8:00 PM

 The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret is opening its doors to people who wish to practice art (with restrictions: i.e. no oil painting or acrylic) during our After-Hours Art Session. The museum offers a wide range of still-life displays associated with the history of surgery and medicine, not to mention the space itself which dates back to the 18th and 19th centuries.
Our After-Hours Art Session will include a talk and light refreshments. A3 paper and pencils will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own.
 Tickets £7.00 adults/£5.00 concessions.
To make a reservation you can call us at 020 71882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

Film Night: Bride of Frankenstein (1938)14606477_10154561788494030_919118408716043660_n

Thursday, 24 November                                     6:30 pm-9:00 pm

Often praised as the finest of all gothic horror movies: the delirious and outlandish Bride of Frankenstein will be screened in the atmospheric setting of the oldest surviving operating theatre in Europe.

The arrival of an amoral and conniving mad scientist persuades Dr Frankenstein into creating a mate for his monster. The former will grow an artificial brain while the doctor gathers the body parts.
Satirical, exciting, funny and an influential masterpiece of art direction – this will be a perfect night for mystery and horror.

The film will be preceded by an introduction and exploration into some of the many, often terrible, cinematic depictions of the creature.

Price: £10 adults, £8 concessions

Apologies but this event has SOLD OUT!

To make a reservation you can call us at 020 71882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


December 2016

article-2383273-1b1ccde4000005dc-7_634x628The Artist and the Anatomist

Thursday, 8 December                                   6:30 pm

From Andreas Vesalius to the most recent digital editions of famous anatomy atlases.

Anatomists have always needed artists to illustrate their books, while artists needed to know anatomy to reproduce the beauty and mystery of the human body.

Join us for this talk by Professor Harold Ellis (RCSE, CBE), one of the most notable British surgeons of the past fifty years, renowned both for his inspirational teaching and as the author of “Clinical Anatomy.”

Part 2 of our Winter Anatomy Series 2016.

Tickets are £8.00 adults, £6.00 concessions.

To make a reservation you can call us at 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


 

vesalius-colourThe Fascinating Life and Work of the Great Anatomist Andreas Vesalius (1514-1569)

Wednesday, 14 December               7:00 PM

Born in 1514, Vesalius studied medicine in Paris and Leuven. As professor of anatomy in Padua, he began writing the De Humani Corporis Fabrica at the age of 24. It took him nearly four years to complete what it became a true landmark in the history of medicine. He supervised all aspects of the making of the book and his final publication in 1543 culminated in the realization of a true masterpiece of science and art. At the peak of his fame as anatomist he decided to give up academia and follow a different path. To these days his decision remains a mystery that Marco Catani and Stefano Sandrone have tried to solve in their book Brain Renaissance: from Vesalius to Modern Neuroscience.

Marco Catani is Professor of Neuroanatomy & Psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London. He is the head of the NatBrainLab (www.natbrainlab.com) and is actively involved in clinical research of neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric conditions. He has written more than 100 scientific papers and co-authored with Michel Thiebaut de Schotten the Atlas of Human Brain Connections (2012). He has received several awards, including the Norman Geschwind Prize in Behavioral Neurology from the American Academy of Neurology (2012). His work has been featured in the New Scientist, Scientific American Mind, British Medical Journal, and on BBC Radio 4. For his book on Vesalius he has been awarded the 2016 Award for Outstanding Book in the History of the Neurosciences.

Part 3 of the Winter Anatomy Series 2016.

Tickets £8.00 adults/£6.00 concessions.

To make a reservation you can call us at +44 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


Film Night: Island of Lost Souls (1932)

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Thursday, 19 January, 2017     7:00 PM

Banned for decades and condemned as a vulgarisation of H. G. Wells’s novel The Island of Dr Moreau: Island of Lost Souls is a delirious delight, a cautionary tale of undisciplined science. A fiendish, whip-cracking doctor is conducting ghastly experiments, transforming beasts into subservient human brutes on a remote island in the South Seas. This touchstone of film terror features a superb performance from Charles Laughton, atmospheric photography and the perverted eroticism of attempting to mate a human with a beautiful woman created from a panther. The film will be preceded by an introduction by Gareth Miles.

Tickets: £10 adults, £8 concessions.

Doors will open at 6.30pm for a 7pm start. Refreshments will be available.

To make a reservation you can call us at 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

 


JANUARY 2017

Florence Nightingale’s Reluctant Life in Portraiture

Tuesday, 31 January, 2017     7:00 PM

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Florence Nightingale disliked having her portrait taken as much as she hated being a celebrity, yet it was largely through the visual representations of her face and person in the press that she gained iconic status in Victorian England. Used as a model by her artistic and adoring sister and cousin, sketches of the young Nightingale contrast sharply with the photographs and paintings of her later years, when the pressures of her work and ill health are very apparent. Representations of the idealised Angel of the Crimea tell as much about attitudes of her time as they do about the reality of her life. Natasha McEnroe will examine Nightingale’s life through a selection of images of her, and will consider whether they can shed some light on the controversy around the mysterious illness of her later years.

Join Natasha McEnroe, director of the Florence Nightingale Museum and the Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret, for this interesting talk.

Doors will open at 6:30pm.

Price £8 adults, £6 concessions.

To make a reservation you can call us at 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.


FEBRUARY 2017

St. Valentine’s Day Heart Workshopheart_hearts_cushions_fabric_red_pink_line_tree_77028_3840x2400

Tuesday, 14 February, 2017  2:00 PM-3:00 PM

Whether whole or broken, the symbol of a heart signifies love.

This Valentine’s day join the team at the Old Operating Theatre and Herb Garret to suture your own fabric heart and stuff it using some of the apothecary’s aromatic herbs.

The event is free, but general Museum admission prices apply (adults, £6.50; concessions, £5; children £3.50; family, £14).

Booking is essential, as places are limited. To make a reservation give us a call at 02071882679, or e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com.

Materials will be provided. This is a family friendly event.


 

imageFilm Night: The Night of the Hunter (1955)

Tuesday, 14 February, 2017             7:00 PM

A twisted morality tale originally rejected by audiences and scorned by critics, Night of the Hunter is now regarded as cinema’s most extraordinary rendering of the battle between good and evil and a masterpiece of film making.
Combining unforgettably haunting images with the darkest elements of both children’s fairytales and noir thrillers: death, guilt, greed, poverty and cruelty, Charles Laughton’s dreamlike slab of Southern Gothic invents a world outside conventional realism.
Featuring the raffish Robert Mitchum as the most unforgettable of villains: a widow killing, child-hunting serial killer/preacher, this expressionistic oddity really is a film like no other.

Spend Valentine’s night at the Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret to find out whether the right hand of love can put old left hand hate down for the count.

Doors open at 6.30pm for a 7pm start. The film will be preceded with an introduction. Refreshments will be available.

Tickets are £10 adults, £8 concessions.

To book your tickets you can call us at 02071882679, e-mail us at oldoperatingtheatre@gmail.com, or get your tickets through Eventbrite.

 


Mind that Knife!download

Monday 13 and Wednesday 15 of February, 2017  2:00 PM

Do you know your anatomy? Is your hand steady and can you dress a wound?

Becoming a surgeon was a serious decision before anaesthesia and antiseptics. A steady hand was needed for an operation.

Come to the Old Operating Theatre to learn how to train and become a surgeon in the 19th century.

The event is free, but general Museum admission prices apply (adults, £6.50; concessions, £5; children £3.50; family, £14).

This is a family friendly event.