2018 Fringe Spotlight : “Alice Hawkins – Suffragette”

We are so delighted to welcome back the passionate and heartfelt Peter Barratt with his 2018 Fringe Show “Alice Hawkins – Suffragette”.

For those who missed his spoken word show last year, Peter Barratt is the great-grandson of suffragette Alice Hawkins who strongly campaigned for women’s rights one hundred years ago, is coming back to the Centre for the 2018 Fringe Festival!  Take a look at the interview below and book your space here.

Hello Peter! Thank you for taking the time to answer our few questions. Could you remind us briefly what your show is about?

I will be speaking on the inspiring life of my suffragette great-grandmother Alice Hawkins and her campaign for the right to vote over a 100 years ago. As I speak of Alice’s campaigning years, I illustrate the talk with images of the suffragette memorabilia that once belonged to Alice and is still with the family to this day and am strongly supported by actor Ruth Pownall who plays the part of Alice, adding an extra dimension to the show. Alice’s sash, hunger strike medal, prison notes and more are all illustrated in the show. It is a fantastic collection and is considered to be one of the finest examples in the UK today still with descendants.

It will be the second time that you are performing at the Fringe, how do you feel about it and have you added some new elements since last year?

The audiences at last year’s Fringe were so enthusiastic and receptive I felt we had to return and for a longer run. There certainly are new elements to the show as through the great support of staff at The National Archives in London, documented notes and statements that Alice made have recently been discovered. Her experiences on ‘Black Friday’ for example are in a statement taken by a journalist of the day, Henry Brailsford.

You and Alice have been featured in the local and national news plus BBC and Sky this year, have you noticed a different interest in 2018 especially from the media in general? and why?


This year is a special year to be at the Fringe as it is the centenary of women (in part) first gaining the vote. Also after a successful fundraising campaign I co-lead, we unveiled a bronze statue of Alice in a centenary week last February in her hometown of Leicester. The first of only four suffrage statues due to be unveiled this year in the UK. (See photo).The unveiling gained national media attention and now a major exhibition ‘Voice and Vote: Women’s place in Parliament’ has just opened at Parliament in London featuring Alice’s suffragette memorabilia.



Over one hundred thousand visitors are expected during its three-month run and many international Fringe-goers will have the opportunity to visit the free exhibition when visiting London, seeing Alice’s memorabilia first hand.







How do you think that your spoken word show can be a relevant way to approach a serious subject such as women rights and sex equality?

Alice became a suffragette and campaigned throughout her life on the issue of gaining equal pay for the women in the shoe factories where she worked and the issue of equal pay is as relevant today for women as it was over a 100 years ago. Through hearing the inspiring life story of Alice I believe it will encourage women today to campaign on issues that affect their own lives and use the vote as an influencer of positive change in society.

Is there anything further you’d like to share about your show?

As a proud descendant, I truly believe speaking of Alice’s campaign for the rights of women is my calling in life and is a fantastic story to be told.

Book your tickets for Alice Hawkins – Suffragette’s show on the official Fringe website now!

A very special visitor – a Doyle through our doors!

Here at the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre we were blessed to have a very special visitor – Cathy Begg (nee Doyle) – the great niece of Arthur Conan Doyle.

Cathy and her husband Mike were visiting Edinburgh for a very specific reason – Tania Henzell, Doyle’s great, great step-granddaughter launched the official Sherlock Holmes Tartan this week and held a prestigious event at Physicians Hall on Thursday evening to mark the occasion.

Arthur Conan Doyle had five children, none of which had children themselves, so meeting a blood-relative of the man himself is an exciting event, made even more brilliant for the fact the Cathy is one of the directors of the Conan Doyle Estate.

We were delighted to give Cathy a tour of our building – named after Arthur Conan Doyle in honour of his work towards spiritualism. Ann Treherne, founder of the Centre, and Eleanor Docherty, one of our receptionists, spoke at length with Cathy about Conan Doyle and his amazing life.


Ann Treherne is going to Germany!

The jet-setting Chair of our Centre, Ann Treherne has got an exciting week coming up – she’s going back to Frankfurt, Germany to team up with Steven Levett to present an amazing two day workshop. In this workshop, the pair will teach how to improve your own life energy and use it to heal and strengthen the spiritual energy of others.

This is an exciting opportunity both for those attending the workshop to learn from two experienced teachers and also for Ann to teach at this fantastic event organised by the Frankfurter Ring.

You can read more about the event here.

Mediumship with June Field: Demonstrations and Workshops


February promises to be an exciting month for anybody interested in mediumship, with the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Center hosting a variety of events with the world-renowned medium June FieldContinue reading Mediumship with June Field: Demonstrations and Workshops→

Life After Death: A discussion with church and spiritual leaders

Last month saw us host an exciting one-off event; Question Time – Death and the Afterlife. We invited three religious leaders to join our Chairwoman, Ann Treherne to explore the possibility of life after death. As well as stating whether  they each believed in survival (in some way or another) after death, they also discussed finer details of exactly what happens to us when we die, according to their own personal interpretations. Continue reading Life After Death: A discussion with church and spiritual leaders→

Exclusive Interview with June Field

The incredible Spiritual Medium, June Field, who has been billed by the media as the “World’s Greatest Psychic”, is returning to Edinburgh and the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre in February 2018 and displaying her demonstration of mediumship and holding a two day intensive couse. She took time out of her busy schedule to give us an exclusive interview… Continue reading Exclusive Interview with June Field→

Doors Open Day 2017

Doors Open Day Edinburgh is an annual event which gives the public the chance to explore some of the city’s most interesting spaces. The Arthur Conan Doyle Centre will be participating in Doors Open Day, welcoming visitors in to show them around, give guided tours of the building and explain the Centre’s cultural, historical and architectural significance. Continue reading Doors Open Day 2017→

Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist: Fringe Review

This week we’ve seen our many Edinburgh Fringe shows kick off and get well under way at the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre. Among the variety of performances we’re hosting at the centre, our very own Chair, Ann Treherne was back with her show, “Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist” for the fifth year running. Continue reading Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist: Fringe Review→

FRINGE SPOTLIGHT – Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist

Our fifth and final ‘Fringe Spotlight’ blog post is all about our very own Ann Treherne, Chair of The Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Centre’s show – Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist. You can buy tickets from the official Fringe website HERE. We’ve asked Ann a few questions to let our audience know a little about the show and what inspired her. Continue reading FRINGE SPOTLIGHT – Arthur Conan Doyle – The Spiritualist→