Geography & Adventure

Welcome to the BRLSI Geography and Adventure page!

Our Programme for 2020:

No room booking in January 2020 – no talks planned


Thursday 13th February  Duncan 7pm -9pm   ‘Bristol to Bath Buses – Past, Present and Future'  by Martin Curtis,                 Managing Director of Bath Bus Company.

"The story of how Bristol influenced bus and tram services throughout the UK through innovation and vehicle manufacturing and how bus service ownership, structure and Bristol-Bath route networks has evolved and how it might change into the future."

About Martin Curtis and Bath Bus Co:   Bath Bus Company was formed in May 1997 by Martin Curtis and three other former Badgerline managers. It commenced operating open top tours in Bath with Bristol VRTs and an AEC Routemaster. It diversified into the operation of tendered services. In 1999, Bath Bus Company became a City Sightseeing franchisee.


Thursday 19th March   Elwin   7-9 Joint with Science  "Flowing rivers are healthy rivers! Removing barriers from Europe’s waterways. " by Professor Carlos Garcia de Leaniz from Swansea University.

Professor Garcia de Leaniz is influential in a big European research project called AMBER. It is all about the fragmentation of European rivers due to human constructed barriers to the flow of water, sediments and living things (eg fish!). The AMBER project is all about supporting actions to remove those barriers.


Thursday   14th May  Elwin   7pm – 9pm  ‘The Apache Helicopter – Sustaining a UK Attack Capability’ by Stephen Collins

 ‘Designed during the Cold War to counter the threat of Soviet tanks in Northern Germany and considered by many to be the best Attack Helicopter in service today, this talk explores the procurement by the UK, its capability and the implications of sustaining a fully integrated flying system that is constantly evolving.

Steve Collins is a retired Civil Servant and  keen aviation enthusiast with flying experience in the Robinson R22 helicopter. He is a former reviewer of major Government programmes and projects for the Office of Government Commerce including maintaining a future attack helicopter capability. He is a qualified PRINCE2 and Managing Successful Programmes Advanced Practitioner.’


Thursday  11th June                     Elwin        7pm -9pm  Ian Gilchrist  ‘Iran - Then and Now’


 Thursday  10th  September         Elwin     7pm -9pm  Provisional Title  ‘Living on a Polder’


Thursday  12th  November  Elwin 1pm- 9pm   Geog “A” Level Afternoon plus WWQ Quiz

Meanwhile, would anyone like to join our team as a co-Convenor for Geography and Adventure? I need some help and will be happy to support anyone with ideas for talks and speakers. If so please drop an email to me at [email protected]   

With best wishes,


Our BRLSI Geography and Adventure Programme in 2019 was . .

Wednesday 27th February 2019

A lecture on: ‘Williams Automobiles  An example of Business Generational Sustainability’ by 
Richard Williams (Owner) This is a joint talk with BRLSI Engineering & Technology and BRLSI Business & Economics

"Williams Automobiles Ltd is a retail car business that has survived for one hundred and seven years. Why have we moved from central Bristol to rural South Gloucestershire and how have we weathered two world wars, a Great Depression, the Internet and three generational changes to remain as a family business, specialising in selling customized Morgan, Lotus and Caterham motor cars in today’s saturated vehicle market? Find out from Richard and Henry Williams on Wednesday, 27th February at 7.30pm"


Wed 27 March 2019 Elwin Room 7:30pm
A lecture in the 'Cities' lecture series:
'Tenochtitlan (present-day Mexico City): Capital of the Aztecs'
Dr Elizabeth Baquedano, Institute of Archaeology, University College London

A visitor to downtown Mexico might be amazed at the beauty of the Mannerist buildings, Baroque churches and Art Nouveau hotels without realising that this was once a lake where, in 1325, the wandering Aztecs found their promised land. In 1978, whilst an electrical transformer was being installed, staff of the electricity company hit a big stone decorated with reliefs, which sparked off the systematic excavations of the Aztecs that have been ongoing for 40 years. We will trace the major discoveries since 1978 until the present day.


Thurs 11 April 2019 Elwin Room 7pm 

“Climate Change: Science and Politics”  by David Warrilow OBE,  President Royal Meteorological Society PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS LECTURE IS A BOX OFFICE EVENT. ALSO PLEASE NOTE THE EARLY STARTING TIME. This lecture is a joint event with BRLSI Science, R Met Soc and R Geog 
Soc Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution is delighted and honoured to welcome David Warrilow OBE, FRMetS, President of the Royal Meteorological Society.
Mr. Warrilow will be available in BRLSI’s Jenyns Room to meet his audience informally from 6.20pm till 6.50pm before his lecture starts at 7pm in the Elwin Room. 

Mr. David Warrilow was a senior government science advisor and international negotiator on climate change and environmental issues, such as ozone depletion and air pollution. He led the UK delegations to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for over 20 years and was a lead negotiator for the EU on the scientific issues covered in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). He managed a significant research programme at the Department of Energy and Climate Change providing underpinning scientific evidence and analysis of climate change, energy and ozone depletion in support of the UK’s domestic and international policies.  Prior to this he undertook research at the Met Office on the development of observing systems, hydrometeorology and flood design, and climate modelling of land surface processes.  Since retiring from the civil service in January 2016, Mr. Warrilow has undertaken several speaking engagements on the scientific background to the Paris Climate Agreement and on the use of science to support policy. He was appointed President of the Royal Meteorological in October 2018.

Mr. Warrilow introduces his talk:
“Any science that has societal relevance soon finds that it must engage with a very different world, where opinion and conviction may count for more than evidence. I will review how the obscure (to most people) subject of climate science became centre stage in an increasingly fractious debate on the environment, development and wealth. I will look at the how science has fed in to the policy process, has become the battleground between environmentalists and free marketeers and the complexities and importance of science in the development of a global response to climate change. Finally, I will look at the challenges facing scientists as they seek to bring objectivity to the debate.”   D. Warrilow 2019 


Thurs 9 May 2019. Elwin Room 7.30pm 

A joint lecture with BRLSI History and Culture "RMS Titanic and her links to Bath" by Bryan Chalker, sometime Mayor of Bath On 14th April 1912, RMS Titanic collided with an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic. Bryan Chalker has researched the dreadful event and will reveal to us how the ship had several links to Bath, not least with Stothert and Pitt cranes and a lady called Edwina “Winnie” Celia Troutt, born and brought up in Bath, who survived the ship’s sinking, and devoted her long life to helping to commemorate those who lost their lives on that voyage.




NEXT EVENTS  . . .   Are currently being devised for September, October and November 2019