Port of Call Lectures

Port of Call Lectures is a series of engaging public talks & performances in celebration of the sea, ships & literary voyagers. Talks are free and open to the public.

‘Mermaids in their Element’ (15 May —LightNight 6pm)

Merseyside Maritime Museum, Albert Dock, Liverpool L3 4AQ

Mysterious, alluring, and often deadly, mermaids have captured the imagination of writers and artists since the dawn of civilisation. Join Professor Sarah Peverley and The Liverpool University Players for a series of nautically-inspired readings.

‘Nancy Cunard’ (23 May  3pm)

Merseyside Maritime Museum, Albert Dock, Liverpool L3 4AQ

Dr Sandeep Parmar reveals the Liverpool links of the beautiful and iconic author, publisher and social activist Nancy Cunard. Once the black sheep of the Cunard family, hounded by controversy wherever she went, she is now heralded as one of the great literary geniuses of her generation.

Down to the sea in ships ‘Horatio Clare’ (24 May 3pm)

Waterstones, Liverpool 1

Join the electrifying former Maersk Writer-in-Residence Horatio Clare for tales of heroism and wonder on the high seas. Down to the Sea in Ships, the best-selling story of seafarers, giant cargo ships and voyages around the world, is “Stupendous and extraordinarily exciting” – The Times

Edward Rushton (6 June 3pm)

Merseyside Maritime Museum, Albert Dock, Liverpool L3 4AQ

Professor Paul Baines on Liverpool’s own Edward Rushton (1756-1814): a sailor from the age of 11. His naval career was terminated as a teenager when he was blinded by an infection caught while trying to help slaves. He was probably the most gifted of the radical writers of the late eighteenth century. This talk will explore the life and work of this remarkable product of Liverpool’s romantic-era marine culture.

‘Questions of travel': Elizabeth Bishop (5 July 3pm)

Museum of Liverpool, Education Area 3

Artist Charlotte Hodes (University of the Arts, London) and poet and Liverpool University Professor Deryn Rees-Jones respond to Bishop’s work creating a new poemfilm that looks at the parallels drawn between actual journeys and the poetic and artistic journeys of reading, drawing, thinking and writing.


Questions of Travel, July 5th, 3pm-4pm

A new poemfilm about the American poet Elizabeth Bishop by Charlotte Hodes and Deryn Rees-Jones