Reading Museum and Town Hall
Thursday 10 November – Sunday 13 November 2011


Full details are below…


BROUGHT IN FOR QUESTIONING: Gwen Adhead, Forensic Psychologist Broadmoor Hospital.

10.30-11.30am, Waterhouse Room, Reading Museum and Town Hall,

Most of the patients at Broadmoor Hospital, previously known as the Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum, have either been convicted of serious crimes, or been found unfit to plead in a trial for such crimes. Dr Gwen Adhead will be talking about the hospital and her experiences working there.



Victorian Crime Fact and Fiction Panel
12-1.15pm, Victoria Hall, Reading Museum and Town Hall,


The Victorians are credited with both our ongoing fascination with murder, crime and punishment and our transformation of these realities into entertainment and sensation, not least through crime fiction novels.

Discussing the emergence of crime in Victorian times are four of the best authors on the era.

Judith Flander’s The Invention of Murder explores how the Victorian public revelled in death and detection and created modern crime. Edward Marston’s Inspector Colbeck series deals with major crimes committed on Victorian railways. Anne Perry has written many novels including the acclaimed William Monk and Thomas Pitt series set in Victorian England.
Kate Summerscale’s The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, broadcast by ITV earlier this year, won the 2008 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction.

They will be expertly chaired by Barry Forshaw, journalist, author and critic.



Minette Walters and her Desert Island Hell
2-3pm, Victoria Hall, Reading Museum and Town Hall,

Award-winning crime writer Minette Walters has already appeared on the real Desert Island Discs but in a special appearance at the Reading Crime Festival, she will reveal exactly what would make her life unbearable as a castaway in a tropical paradise - and she does not limit herself to music! In a frank and searching (though not terribly serious) interview, Minette will name and shame the books, films, television shows, politicians, celebrities - you name it - which would drive her bonkers if trapped with them on a desert island.

The role of Sue Lawley (or, if you prefer Kirsty Young) will be taken by crime fiction critic Mike Ripley



West Reading Crime Walk
with David Cliffe, Reading Libraries Local Studies Manager
3.30pm start at Battle Library, £7/£6.
Tickets are collection only from Reading Central Library from Monday 11 July.

Due to popular demand a second Crime Walk has been added.
Join Reading Libraries Local Studies Manager, David Cliffe, for a walk through the back streets of West Reading, past locations connected with notorious crimes of years gone by. The tour takes in the street in which Mrs Dyer the “baby farmer” was arrested and the scene of the 1966 “Fingerprint Murder”.



Crooked Talk: Five Hundred Years of the Language of Crime
3.30-4.30pm, Waterhouse Room, Reading Museum and Town Hall,

Jonathon Green is a national expert on slang.  Discover five hundred years of crooks and conmen, from the hedge-creepers and counterfeit cranks of the sixteenth century to the blaggers and burners of the twenty-first. Not to mention a substantial detour behind bars into the world of prisons and, of course, the swag, the hideouts, the getaway vehicles and allied 'tools of the trade'.



Cold Case Files: Past crimes solved by new forensic science
with DI Paul Bethell and Liz Porter
4.30-5.30pm, Victoria Hall, Reading Museum and Town Hall,

Australian journalist Liz Porter discusses her latest book Cold Case File: Past crimes solved by new forensic science with Paul Bethall, the Senior Review Manager & Deputy Head of the South Wales Police Review Unit, who has provided expert help with some of her research. A fascinating talk which reveals how modern forensic science can unlock crimes left unsolved for decades.


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Event sponsors

Reading Borough Council

Reading LibraryReading Town Hall Museum

Reading Post