All text copyright Stephen Coates 2006 - 2015


October 12th at 33 Fitzroy Square.
How to die In London

Antique Beat have programmed an incredible day of Death and the City related things for the Hendricks Carnival of Knowledge in a gorgeous Grade I listed Robert Adam house in central London.

At one of our Salons for the City at Westminster Library earlier this year, I asked the question of the audience:  "How many people think they will die in London?".  Surprisingly few responded in the affirmative.  I wasn't sure sure whether that was because most people plan to leave at some point - or whether they don't think they are going to die anywhere..

The latter possibility is leant weight by the fact that two thirds of people here haven't made a will.  We became intrigued by this a few years back and included a lovely free Last will and testament form in the special edition of The Real Tuesday Weld album "At the End of the World'.  Despite that, most of my friends still haven't made one - although in the light of the most superficial questioning they seem to have quite strong preferences for what should and shouldn't happen to them and their stuff when they are gone!  I see planning your end as an enjoyable, creative exercise - like designing a party.  It is salutary, sure,  but in a positive way.  You feel rather refreshed and ready for action when its done - and also much more likely to stop dicking around and get on with what you really should be doing.

Anyway,  when Hendricks asked us to put together a day for their Carnival as part of London Cocktail week, it seemed a perfect opportunity to explore London Beyond London in some detail.

So there will be a series of talks - arranged as our salons are with two related speakers followed by conversation.  And it is an incredible line up - Historian of Death Robert Stephenson, Curator of Osteology Jelena Bekvalac, London Way of Death's Brian Parsons, Londonist's Matt Brown, Future Death expert Dr John Troyer, Fashion guru Amber Jane Butchart, the BFI's Will Fowler and Dead Social's James Norris.

They will cover everything from the mediaeval way of death to the future of cemeteries. We have death mask making workshops, we have Dresses to Die for.  You can spend time in a coffin, you can meet an Undertaker, make a will (provided), find out what will happen to your Facebook account when you are gone, learn how to carry on updating it from beyond the grave - and of course drink cocktails.

My only regret is that I will be MC-ing rather than just hanging out.

Several things are free and drop in, others require booking.
Full details and reservations here

See you on the other side then..