Tag Archives: rory bremner

Who Do You Think You Are? Live: Day One

26 Feb

Today was the first day of Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2010 and although it was tiring, I picked up some useful information, was entertained and it was extremely rewarding.

WDYTYA1

As you can see it was pretty busy, but not too crowded (it was a Friday after all). There appeared to be more space, but I am not sure if that is down to fewer people or fewer stands.

One noticeable absence was The National Archives, probably not surprising considering the cut in services they have already suffered in the name of financial cost-cutting.

The talks I attended were quite diverse, first an interview with celebrity Rory Bremner, then Ian Waller talking about 20th-century research. Michael Gandy’s talk on breaking through brick walls was inspirational and Celia Heritage on interpreting churches and gravestones has opened my eyes to some of the features in parish churches, which I would otherwise pass by in my rush to get at the monumental inscriptions.

The rest of the afternoon was spent wandering the stands, see what was on offer and trying to work out how I can benefit from them when I return tomorrow.

Tomorrow should be a lot busier, I only hope the crowds are not too bad. For a simple country boy used to wandering alone in the countryside, so many people can be a bit overwhelming. Plus it was a bit too warm in the hall for my liking.

Over the next week I shall try and write in a bit more detail about the talks and stands, and what I learnt from my visit. Now I must go to bed, it is going to be another long day tomorrow!

WDYTYA2

Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2010 is less than three weeks away

8 Feb

My tickets for Who Do You Think You Are? Live (WDYTYAL) arrived this weekend and the February 2010 issue of Who Do You Think You Are? magazine includes a free copy of the show guide. So it is about time I sat down and planned what I want to do and see, to get the most out of my visit.

In terms of the practicalities, I am in the fortunate position of being close enough to London not to need a hotel, and there is not advantage in buying train tickets in advance (other than avoiding queuing at the ticket office in the morning). Although it does look like I can save nearly half price if I wait until the 9 o’clock train, but still get to Olympia before any of the workshops start.

It is great having the show guide ahead of time, having visited previous events at Olympia and having the floor plan I can already visualize the hall, and I am glad I have two days to explore all the exhibitors stands, it looks absolutely packed. I am pleased to see that there appears to be more seating areas provided than in previous years.

A glance at the workshop timetable shows that there are up to seven simultaneous workshops going on, covering a wide variety of subjects and geographical regions.  I shall start picking out the sessions I know I want to attend.

Two of the sessions I really want to see are the celebrity interviews. On Friday there is Rory Bremner and on Saturday, Kate Humble. Esther Rantzen will be there on Sunday, if I decided to go for a hat-trick and attend on all three days. All three of these celebrities have appeared in the Who Do You Think You Are? TV series. Also on Friday, Tony Robinson is giving a presentation at the Ancestry.co.uk Academy entitled The Journey of a record.

The Society of Genealogist’s Family History Show is the home to a multitude of smaller exhibitors such as regional societies, archives and vendors. I need to go through the list of exhibitors and see who is attending that I need to meet and question, or whose products I need to check and buy.

There is so much going on at the show that I might need that third day, I haven’t even thought about the military pavilion or the photography gallery, and how I am going to get the most out of them. Who knows, I might even find some time for blogging as well!

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