Events

The Friends will be following the University’s policy to inform decisions on what actions to take in the light of the Coronovirus – COVID19 – outbreak. As at 13 March 2020 all Friends’ events up to the end of April are cancelled. Members with bookings will be informed. This page will be updated with information on other events as it becomes available. Update: 26 March 2020 – the University has cancelled all events scheduled for May and June and is reviewing the position on July and August events. Update July 2020: The Friends will not be holding ‘live’ events for the next 2 months. The situation will be reviewed in September.

  • The Friends have devised walking trails around the University campuses. These may be available to local groups. Please contact thefriends (usual at sign) reading.ac.uk for further information. Our Whiteknights Heritage Leaflets are available at:

    University Heritage 3 – Whiteknights Park 1798-1819
    University Heritage 4 – Whiteknights Park 1849-1947
    University Heritage 5 – Whiteknights Park 1947-1967

  • POSTPONED

    A guided walking tour, starting at 2.00 pm from the Earley Gate lodges, of Earley Gate and The Wilderness offered exclusively for Friends. The tour covers the history of the wartime TOBs (Temporary Office Buildings), the Cold War ‘citadel’ (Region 6 War Room), ‘The Woods’ (Marquis of Blandford era) and the site of ‘The Wilderness’, one of the six Victorian houses built in the Park.Please dress for the conditions – solid footwear and rain wear (if necessary). The tour may include some walking on uneven surfaces. Disabled access might be restricted; it is therefore not recommended for wheelchair users. Parking ...

  • Update July 2020: in view of the continuing uncertainty over the safety of holding events and the timing coinciding with the University welcoming students on campus we are postponing our participation in this event until 2021

    The Friends will be collaborating with other local organisations in these National Trust-coordinated Heritage Open Days, the theme of which is Hidden Nature. We hope to co-ordinate something around the Grotto in the Wilderness on Whiteknights. Details will be sent out later in the year.

  • Martin Kaufman will follow up his visit to Limehouse, Shadwell and Wapping last year with a proposed guided tour of the Royal Docks, the Thames Barrier and Tilbury Docks. Details will be sent to members nearer the time with an itinerary, timings and cost.

  • THE TRAIL HAS BEEN POSTPONED TO JUNE 2021.

    A book entitled The Art and History of Whiteknights celebrating the founding of the Trail 20 years ago can be purchased through tworiverspress.com . The Friends have not only given a grant towards the cost of publication but also, through some of its volunteers, provided chapters on the Southern Hill area round Christchurch Road, and about Whiteknights Park derived from their work on its history that has resulted in a series of published Friend’ Heritage Trail Guides.

Some Past Events

  • Members of The Friends are cordially invited to the launch of this installation of sculptures. Please click the title to see details.

  • Members Dr John Grainger and Ian Burn will give a talk on the heritage trails created for The Friends’ 90th anniversary celebrations in 2017. There will be an accompanying exhibition and tea. Full details and booking form have been sent to members.

  • Organ recital in the Great HallUniversity Orchestra Concert 10 March 2018
  • The Reading 2050 project is holding open lectures to which members of the Friends are very welcome.

  • THE RUBC HAS HAD TO CANCEL THIS EVENT DUE TO WEATHER & RIVER CONDITIONS

  • University choirs (Campus Voices, Academic Voices, and Chamber Choir, plus the Institute of Education’s Universal Voices children’s choir) will be performing in an advent concert on Thursday 7 December, at Christ Church (Christchurch Road, Reading, RG2 7AJ). The concert is free, but there will be a retiring collection for Nordoff Robbins, a music therapy charity. All welcome.

  • Friends are most welcome to the University Carol Service which is taking place on Monday 4 December at 6pm in the Great Hall featuring the Chamber Choir and readings from University members.

  • The Big Band have their annual Swing Ball taking place on Saturday 25 November. This promises to be a great evening, with fantastic entertainment from the University Big Band and Reading Boys School Big Band, plus a swing dance taster session and performances from the University Swing Dance Society. This event has sold out in the past, so you are advised to book tickets in advance as soon as possible.
    https://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/music/Events/SwingBall.aspx

  • Professor Farrelly Head of the University’s new School of Architecture has invited us to visit. Further details will be available in August.

  • A guided tour of the area. Further details available in August.

  • Inspired by Reading’s Victorian Turbine, All of a Twist is an exhibition of the science and technology of twisty-turny stuff under, on, above and beside Reading’s rivers. Thermals, tornados, whirlpools, watermills, willow, spirogyra, towrope, wool, DNA and turbines have all affected Reading, its river dwellers, monks, red kites and now us one way or another.

    Advised by Reading-based scientists, most from the University, local charity RG Spaces is mounting this exhibition at the Turbine House on the River Kennet courtesy Reading Museum.
    A special viewing for members of Friends of the University & their guests will be held on ...

  • Professor Mike Fulford has invited us to the site of the new temple dig at Silchester. Further details will be available at the beginning of August.

  • The Friends will be represented at this event showing a collection of historic University photos. The Shepherds Hut which The Friends helped fund is being unveiled decorated by the Mewes Knitters alongside many other community activities.

    Everyone is invited to bring along a picnic, and any family teasures you would like evaluated. See Community Treasures

    This is an excellent opportunity to get up to date with the changes the Friends are helping make in the Museum garden.

  • Chairman with certificate

    The Friends was honoured to be inducted into the University’s College of Benefactors at the degree ceremony in the Great Hall on 6 July 2017. Dr Chris Gayford received the honour from the Chancellor followed by a presentation from the Vice-Chancellor, Sir David Bell in the Acacias.

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  • Our Yearly Meeting will be held at London Road, with a visit to the Museum of English Rural Life
    followed by tea and our Meeting in Room L022 G03/4. Full details and booking form will be sent
    round nearer the time.