Sunderland Style

King Henry VIII visits Sunderland

We have just presented a Tudor Talk with display at Sunderland Library and Arts Centre.

The Sunderland Library and Arts Centre has just been reopened and our talk was part of the events to celebrate. We were located in a large meeting room on the second floor, purpose built for events at the library – it also had a wonderful state of the art kitchen and changing area – perfect for our events.

Included was a brief history of the Tudors and their clothes.  Beautiful costumes for Anne Boleyn, Mary Queen of Scots – as well as headdresses, jewellery, fans and Tudor Underwear were on display.   King Henry VIII himself in full regalia made a personal appearance and there was also a mannequin dressed as Queen Elizabeth I in a very Ornate Gold embroidered Silk Gown with Ruff and Fan. 

We have a good number of guests attending our talk – in fact more chairs had to be added prior to my lecture to accommodate the extra visitors! My talk was very well received – we received both excellent feedback from both our guests and also the staff at Sunderland Library and Arts Centre.

Anne Boleyn Gown

I mentioned the inspiration for my work started in Sunderland itself. In 1969 at the tender age of 11 I attended a screening of a film at the ABC cinema in Sunderland – it was called Anne of the Thousand Days ‘starring Genevieve Bujold as ‘Anne Boleyn. With the romance and beauty of the gowns, as well as sets and costumes used in the production it inspired in me a lifelong passion for anything connected with ‘Anne Boleyn’ as well as a desire to recreate costumes from the 16th Century. I made my first ‘Anne’ costume at the age of 14 from a cut down red velvet dress of my mothers – I thought I looked wonderful.At the age of 17 I attended Sunderland Youth Theatre which gave me a taste for theatre production. After completing my A levels I enrolled for a one year Foundation Course in Art and Design at Sunderland University – a year which I thoroughly enjoyed which led to me studying  a BA Hons Theatre Design at Nottingham Trent University.  

I enjoyed chatting to a lovely lady who is currently designing and making costumes for a local theatre production. Her daughter will be starring as Anne Boleyn – she mentioned she has three Tudor costumes to design in three weeks – no mean feat!! I was happy to give her as much advice as I could.

I also received an enquiry from a lady who is a member of a local embroiderers Guild – she said she really enjoyed the talk and would it be possible to book us next year for her group – I replied that we present a lot of events to ladies groups, Townswomen’s Guilds, the WI and also Embroiderers Guilds.  She said they were fully booked for this year and would be in touch about booking us for next year. As we already have a lot of events booked for 2015 – I advised her to email us now. 

Gold Gown on Mannequin with new stomacher

I have just received the following comment from Norma who attended our talk

“Enjoyed your talk and costume demonstration. It has been wonderful to go onto your site and watch the videos, great to see you in costume and the fab King Henry. Thanks again for a very enjoyable afternoon in Sunderland Library.”  

Thank you Norma for your excellent comment.

We are having a very successful year – our best ever I am pleased to say.

I would also like to thank Julie Lawrence and her team for making our ‘Tudor talk and Costume display such a success – I am sure we will be presenting more events at Sunderland Arts Centre and Library in the future.

Leave A Comment...


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.