Special Interest Days

The format of our Special Interest Days changed slightly last year. Instead of there being three lectures in all (two in the morning and one in the afternoon), now there are two lectures in the morning (with coffee in the break between them) and the event ends with lunch. Our Special Interest Days are held at the Riverhouse Barn, Manor Road, Walton-on-Thames KT12 2PF. Click the following link to find the location of Riverhouse Barn: http://www.riverhousebarn.com/home/find-us/

There are 2 or 3 SIDs each year.

Tickets are first available from the SIDs organiser's booking desk near the back of the hall two lecture meetings before the event; they are not available before then. The cost of the SID will be given when the tickets are first available for sale. Members may apply for up to two tickets each (for members only unless otherwise advised). Payment may be made:

a) by cheque made payable to The Arts Society Weybridge for the full amount of the SID or

b) by online payment direct to The Arts Society Weybridge bank account. This is the same bank account to which annual TASW membership payments can be made. Please ask the SIDs organiser for our bank details. Our Treasurer will recognise what the payment is for from the amount being paid and the date of payment. When buying the ticket, please tell the SIDs organiser that you will be paying by online payment.

If the SID is oversubscribed, members' names will be put on a standby list, in order of application. If the SID is undersubscribed, places on the SID may be offered to persons on our waiting list, or to spouses/partners of members, or members of other TAS Societies.

If you have to cancel your booking, please let the organiser know immediately so that if possible a replacement can be found from those on the standby list. Please do not arrange your own replacement. If your place is filled, a refund will be made, less a £5 cancellation fee, after the event has taken place. If your place cannot be filled, no refund will be made.

Wed 20th March 2019

Travels in Rajasthan with Rudyard Kipling: Palaces and Temples, Monuments and Forts in the Land of Kings

Elizabeth Merry

Booking dates 9th January and 14th February 2019
As a young reporter working for the Lahore Gazette Kipling took a journey through Rajasthan during 1888 during which he produced some magical and evocative descriptions of the buildings he saw there. Nowadays he is overwhelmingly associated with the world of the Empire and the British Raj in India. But as the son of the Principal of the Bombay Art School and a talented artist himself, Kipling’s ‘seeing eye’ and his love of India provide a wonderful way in to the world of the Moguls and Maharajahs. In his company we explore some of Rajasthan’s magnificent architectural splendours and gain some insights into the rich cultural history of the ‘Land of Kings’. 
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Elizabeth has over 25 years' experience lecturing on a range of subjects including classical art and architecture, aspects of the visual arts and the links between literature and art. Has lectured for the WEA, the Universities of Bristol and Southampton Departments of Continuing Education, Royal Society of Arts, Dillington House, Jane Austen Society, Thomas Hardy Society, Brussels Brontë Society, Finzi Society, the Art Fund, Dorset County Museum and literary, historical and philosophical societies nationwide. Has also lectured on study tours to Rome, Aachen, Cologne, Brittany and the Dordogne, as well as all over the UK. Lectured in Australia and New Zealand in 2011 and is returning to Australia for two further lecture tours.

Image: Elizabeth Merry
Wed 16th October 2019

"Tantrums and Tiaras"
Life backstage at The Royal Opera House

Nigel Bates

Booking dates 8th August and 11th September 2019
This lecture takes a look at life backstage at London's Royal Opera House and the tribulations and triumphs of working with The Royal Opera and The Royal Ballet companies. We look at the way artistic inspirations, the people involved and the very special Victorian building all function together to create world-class opera and ballet in a unique environment.  Includes several performance video clips. The lecture will include details of the history and architecture of the building.
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Nigel Bates is the Music Administrator of The Royal Ballet and has been a performer for nearly forty years in and out of the Royal Opera House, including seventeen years as Principal Percussionist with the Orchestra. He has worked with many of the leading figures in the classical music industry and was also a producer for both the BBC's Maestro at the Opera and Pappano's Classical Voices documentary series. He is a regular contributor to the printed and online content of the ROH.
He has given lectures for over twenty years, including arts societies and conservatoires in the UK and across Australia.

Image: Nigel Bates

Bookings can be made at the two lecture meetings prior to a Special Interest Day. Bookings together with payment cheque made payable to The Arts Society Weybridge are accepted on a first come first served basis. Bookings are open to members and their guests. If an event is oversubscribed, names will be entered, in order of application, on a standby list if the member so wishes.

Enquiries about Special Interest Days can be emailed to our Special Interest Days committee member, Anne Gregory-Jones, at

The Arts Society Weybridge cannot be held responsible for any personal accident, loss, damage or theft of members’ personal property. Members are covered against proven liability to third parties.