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Thursday 18 November 2021 - 19.00

This talk will take you on the pathways through the cemetery of Père Lachaise which are bursting with beautiful statues, strange symbols, remarkable stories, and hidden corners where we can find:

  • The 19th Century Selfie-Cosplay queen
  • The man who gave the Moon a shot in the eye
  •  The most visited tomb in the cemetery

We’ll also answer the three most common questions about Père Lachaise:

  • How the cemetery came into being
  • Why it has this name
  •  Why it looks as it does

Join us and listen to  an adventure through this ethereal city. We will search out some of the unseen tombs and forgotten personalities; the great, the good and the extraordinary of Père Lachaise.

Simon Handy will be your guide and is the British Council’s resident historian with a Master's in the History of Paris from the University of London.

Following his curiosity he started walking in the cemeteries of Paris. He was fascinated by the stories he found in them, and created various circuits for his own amusement. Later after taking several friends and British Council colleagues along these less trodden paths, he was encouraged to share with the wider public.

What is "Talks in English "? 

Talks in English is a series of monthly talks given in English and based on different themes. Talks are delivered by our teachers as well as external speakers. Information on upcoming sessions is available on our website and our social networks. Talks are open and free for all students as well as members of the public (subject to seat availability).

Refreshments are served after each talk to give participants a chance to practise their English during informal networking.

Simon Handy - English language teacher

Simon Handy

I enjoy helping students towards specific targets, especially exam orientated ones. I aim to provide stimulating and enjoyable courses so that students of all ages and levels can progress and reach their goals.

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English language