Online Talks

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the way we’re offering our educational programme for adults has changed for the time being, but we’re still committed to sharing our fantastic collections and stories with a brilliant range of illustrated talks and armchair guided tours that are delivered online to you and your group.

If you would like to find out about our usual adult learning offer please click here.

How does it work?

Our talks and armchair tours are designed to be delivered ‘live’ across a video-conferencing platform.

Our talks are illustrated with great images and content which you and your members will be able to see as the talk goes on. The talks last about 45 minutes with an additional time at the end for questions and answers.

Our armchair tours are recreations of our guided tours from the safety and comfort of your own home. They combine images of where you’d go on your tour with additional images to enhance your tour. They are led by an expert historian or educator.

We can work across various different online platforms, including Zoom, Google Meet and Jitsi. If you normally use a different platform just let us know and we’ll do our best to make it as straightforward for you as possible.

To make a booking please contact our bookings officer Becky at


All of our talks cost £65.


  • 1338 And All That Southampton suffered a catastrophic raid at the hands of French pirates at the beginning of the Hundred Years War. This talk unpicks the story and delves into Southampton’s medieval past.
  • Georgian Southampton: The Age of Spas, Stagecoaches and Highwaymen During the 18th century Southampton grew into a prosperous spa resort. Discover its story in this talk based on the town in the Georgian era.
  • A History of Tudor House Discover the story of Southampton’s most important historic building, from its Norman roots through the dark days of the Southampton Blitz, and everything in between.
  • A History of Southampton in Buildings Explore the history of the town by finding out about a number of important buildings in the town today and what they tell us about Southampton’s past.
  • Hamwic: Anglo-Saxon Southampton During the Dark Ages Southampton became one of the most important Anglo-Saxon towns in England. Unpick its story by exploring the archaeological evidence they left behind.
  • If Walls Had Ears: Southampton’s Medieval Defences This talk explores the story of  Southampton through its defensive walls and touches on some of their pivotal moments including the devastating French raid that was the impetus for their creation, how it defended a major medieval and Tudor trading port,  and its later roles as a space for entrepreneurial inventors and those seeking shelter from German bombers…
  • The Ghosts of Tudor House: Southampton’s Most Haunted Building? Go ghost-hunting in this fun talk looking at things that go bump in the night and find out about the reports of ghosts at Tudor House through the centuries.
  • The Life and Times of Ellen Wren: A Story of Victorian Southampton The story of Ellen Wren is fairly well-known: she was a woman who stole and drank her way to an early grave and whose death in squalid conditions led to enormous changes in housing in Southampton. This talk charts her life from cradle, to grave, and beyond.
  • The Mysterious Death of William Rufus This talk explores a nearly-thousand-years-old mystery- the death of King William II, a stone’s throw from Southampton, in August 1100.
  • O God, Our Help In Ages Past: The Story of Southampton’s Hymn This talk explores the Southampton of Isaac Watts’ time and the remarkable story of the hymn’s Southampton links throughout the last 300 years.
  • POSH: A History of Southampton Docks Discover the remarkable story of Southampton’s docks and the ocean liners that called the town home.
  • Prehistoric and Roman Southampton Chart the first people who came to the area that is now Southampton from distant prehistory through to Roman settlement of Clausentum.
  • Tales of Tudor Southampton 16th century Southampton was awash with privateers, Italian merchants and dodgy deals. Find out more about the town during the reigns of the famous Tudor monarchs.
  • The Southampton Blitz Discover the story of wartime Southampton in this talk exploring the Second World War.
  • Southampton: Gateway to the World Inspired by our ‘Southampton: Gateway to the World’ exhibition, this talk explores how and why the town has become such an important maritime centre for commerce and the movement of people.
  • The Story of St Mary’s Workhouse Discover the story of the St Mary’s poorhouse and delve into what life was like to poor of the town during the Victorian period.
  • Stuart Southampton: Mayflower, Civil War and the Great Plague This talk focuses on Southampton in the Stuart era by examining the sailing of the Mayflower, the impact of the Civil War and the catastrophe of the Great Plague.
  • A Titanic Conspiracy? Was the sinking of Titanic an elaborate insurance scam, did poor-quality rivets sink her and was a raging fire responsible for her sinking? This talk looks at the conspiracy theories associated with Titanic.
  • Titanic: Heroes & Villains This talk explores the famous stories of Titanic by looking at some of the heroes and villains associated with the sinking of the RMS Titanic.

Armchair Tours

  • Southampton’s Titanic Story Develop a greater understanding of the tragedy of the RMS Titanic and its affect on Southampton in this expert-led tour of our permanent Titanic exhibition. The tour is designed to complement the collections on display.
  • Southampton: Gateway to the World Gain an in-depth perspective into Southampton’s history. Find out about the pirate emperor who  turned Britain into his own Empire in Roman times and why a witch was brought to St Mary’s Stadium in the 2000s.
  • Old Police Station– Go behind-the-scenes of SeaCity to discover the story of the Central Police Station which was based here until 2011. Visit a padded cell and visit the old Coroner’s Court.
  • Civic Centre Clock Tower Ascend Southampton’s iconic clock tower and its incredible history.
  • Tudor House & Garden Visit one of Southampton’s most historic buildings and find out more about the history of the house and garden.
  • The Southampton Blitz Southampton was heavily bombed during the Second World War. This walking tour descends into a number of the public air-raid shelters and explores the experiences of those who lived through some of the darkest days of Southampton’s history.
  • Southampton’s Old Town Uncover Southampton’s hidden past with this walking tour around and under the Old Town, exploring stories of merchants, mayhem and murder along the way! This tour visits some of the medieval vaults beneath the town.
  • Walking the Titanic– A walking tour exploring the story of Titanic by visiting the places affected by it.


We want to make the process as easy as possible for you. Why not book your speaker for a number of different talks to explore a wide range of Southampton’s history? Discounts are available when booking multiple talks.


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