All posts by London Meeting

London Meeting, Saturday, January 4th 2020

Speaking this month we have:

1st. Jacqui Furneaux – ​Seven years from India to Bristol on an Enfield bullet!

Jacqui Furneaux reveals the story of her unexpected and unplanned lengthy journey through 20 countries with her trusty 500cc motorbike. It tells the reasons for this epic trip and how a six-month holiday became a seven year way of life in Asia, Australasia and the Americas. Hear how a 50 year-old nurse becomes a mechanic and adapts to life on dusty roads and goat tracks from the mountains to the sea, through barren deserts to lush jungles.

Topics covered include:

  • How it all started;
  • the 500cc Enfield Bullet motorcycle;
  • the travel method and tips on how to do it;
  • benefits and disadvantages of being female in this activity;
  • triumph over adversity;
  • people met along the way;
  • highs and lows,
  • fun and fear!

Find out more at:

2nd. Zara Taylor – Anhui Province – Home of the Four Treasures of Chinese brush painting

As a practitioner in the art of Chinese brush painting, this is a journey to explore the province renowned for its manufacture of the materials for painting – the 4 treasures. Still being produced today by artisans, using ancient and secret methods passed down through the generations. With few foreign tourists, a hidden gem, a region with many ancient villages, water towns and unique Hui merchant architecture to discover.

By tradition we follow this meeting with a New Year Party post-meeting – everyone is invited to bring food and wine or soft drinks (we are not allowed beer or spirits) and participate!

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting Saturday, June 6, 2020

Speaking this month we have:

1st. Julian Elliott – The eagle hunters of Mongolia

To the outside world we often think that Mongolia and eagle hunters go together. But in reality the eagle hunters we so often associate with the country are in fact of a Kazak origin and live in the west of the country.

Julian’s journey to the west of the country was fraught with troublesome weather but once the epic journey commenced Julian’s was introduced to three different eagle hunter families.

The journey ended at an eagle festival that was held in celebration of the Kazak new year. A festival that was fascinating to behold along with the characters that took part in it.


2nd. Will Batho – Using adventure to inspire change

A former helicopter pilot to the special forces, extreme sports fanatic, educator and coach, Will combines his love of adventure with his experience of personal development in challenging situations. His incredible journey of discovery during Expedition Himalaya with a group of wounded veterans will explore the power of the outdoors and the science driving transformation through adventurous journeys


Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting Saturday, May 2, 2020

Speaking this month we have:

1st. Janet Parsons – Palestine: Beyond the Wall

Palestine is a land of striking contrasts, from its ancient limestone hills crowned with scattered villages and more recently dense clusters of Israeli settlements, to the vast stretches of the Judean desert, rich in remarkable sites and buildings. Very few tours visit places like Mar Saba, Hisham’s Palace and the palm shaded oases of this beautiful landscape.

Jan travelled through Palestine in 2017 with the Palestine Exploration Fund, meeting some of the hospitable Palestinian people across the West Bank including Bedouins and the Samaritan community with their ancient customs. We will visit the holy sites in Hebron, a volatile city where tensions run high, Qumran, home to the Dead Sea Scrolls and Temple Mount in Jerusalem – a significant site to the three major world religions. Jan’s talk will also address the impact of the Separation Wall in the context of the more recent history of Palestine.

Jan Parsons was Chairman of Guildford Travel Club from 2013 – 2019. A keen photographer, her particular interest is visiting ancient and remote sites away from the tourist trail where travel, history, culture and archaeology meet.


2nd. Andy Browning – Following in Family Footsteps.

They say a picture paints a thousand words, well not this one.  Having stared at the same unremarkable photo on his grandparent’s wall for years, Andy was surprised to discover not only was this picture taken in Sudan, but also the slightly dusty and angry looking man holding a bicycle was in fact his Great Grandfather – a revelation which could only lead to one thing.

Following in Family Footsteps is the story of how an old sepia photograph inspired a three-month adventure following 80-year-old family footprints through the mountains and deserts of East Africa.  As well as negotiating sandstorms, pool sharks, rogue bus drivers, active volcanoes, and some of the hottest temperatures the planet has to offer, this is also the story of an often-misunderstood corner of Africa through the eyes of two people generations apart.”

Find out more at:


Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting Saturday, April 4, 2020 (POSTPONED)

The meeting for April been postponed to a future date due to the Corona virus and the national guidance on self-isolation and social distancing.

Health advice

We’re asking all members/visitors to follow the national guidance on self-isolation and social distancing. This includes not going out to the pub, the theatre, or to other social activities. You should stay at home if you have either:

  • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
  • a new, continuous cough – this means you’ve started coughing repeatedly

Do not go to a GP, pharmacy or hospital and please don’t call 111 unless you have to.

If you are unwell, the people who live with you will also need to stay home.


Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting Saturday, March 7, 2020

Speaking this month we have:

1st. Jim Holmes – The Altai of Western Mongolia.    

I travelled around Western Mongolia for UNICEF working on a photographic documentary. From remote camel herding communities to vast moon-like landscapes punctuated by shimmering lakes, this is a location for those who love wide open spaces. Subsistence agriculture and few public services make this a tough environment for families. See how UNICEF is supporting schools to make children’s lives and futures stronger.

Jim Holmes is a professional photographer that specialises in worldwide humanitarian issues.

Find out more at:

2nd. John Pilkington – Llamas and Gangsters in Bolivia

Until 20 years ago, trains of fluffy, brightly-tassled llamas would set
out each June on a 300-kilometre, three-week journey over the Andes
using a track dating back to Inca times. Their woven saddlebags were
loaded with blocks carved from the Uyuni salt lake – the biggest and
highest in the world – which the drovers traded in the lowlands for
maize, honey, chillies, and (this being Bolivia) coca leaves. Our
President joined one of the last of the dwindling caravans.

Going back another 100 years, Bolivia was the haunt of two of America’s
most wanted runaways – Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. A Bolivian
miner’s wage packet wasn’t great, but there were a great many miners and
they were all paid weekly in cash. The payrolls were taken to each mine
on horseback. It was just too tempting for the ‘Yanqui’ outlaws; but did
Paul Newman and Robert Redford tell us the whole story? Come and hear
what really happened.


https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/two-travel-talks-jim-holmes-the-altai-of-western-mongolia-and-john-pilkington-llamas-and-gangsters-registration-92555988453

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting Saturday, February 1, 2020

Speaking this month we have:

1st. Kim Rix – Gemstone adventures in Myanmar (Burma).

There aren’t many unspoilt travel destinations that offer a tourist both an authentic and exciting experience, but Myanmar is certainly one of them, Kim has discovered.

In the course of writing the seventh book in the Gemstone Detective travel guide series, Kim travelled to Myanmar twice in 2019 to undertake research.  Unable to stay away, she is about to return as leader of a gem tour to Mogok, Valley of the Rubies.

Besides giving her audience a flavour of the gem trade in Myanmar, Kim will show that there is so much more to Myanmar than its deserved reputation for fine gemstones.

Foodies will find that the incredible local cuisine will their mouths watering for more.  Fans of architecture will find much to admire in Myanmar’s dazzling Buddhist temples.  Those who love the great outdoors will be spoilt for choice with some great trekking routes, spectacular scenery and pretty waterfalls in the rainforest around Mogok.

Kim passionately believes that Myanmar is the travel experience of a lifetime. “It was so hard to put the camera down.” she says, “The only time it left my hands was when they served Laphet – a local salad of fermented tea leaves, shredded cabbage, deep-fried beans, nuts, peas and tomatoes, all flavoured with chilli and garlic. You won’t have tasted anything like it before!”

For more information visit:

2nd. Robin Ratchford – Beyond our screens – in search of our own perspectives

Iraq, North Korea and Chechnya – three fascinating places that, sadly, when they appear in the headlines it is usually for all the wrong reasons.  Yet each has its own history and culture and many aspects to it that rarely make it to through the forest of bad news.  Robin invites us to take a tour that goes beyond our screens – be they on TV, a laptop or our mobile phones – to look at some of the less-reported features of these three travel destinations

Robin Ratchford has lived in six different countries and visited more than 130 countries and territories on all seven continents.

Looking back, he thinks collecting colourful stamps from the age of six first sparked his interest in foreign countries and cultures all over the world. Travel, adventure and discovery are central themes in his life.

The people he meets and the cultures he has experienced are a constant inspiration for Robin’s writing.

Born in the United Kingdom, Robin is currently based in Belgium.

He counts learning and improving his knowledge of several European languages among his constant passions.

He and his faithful companion Mortimer the Fox Terrier live in Brussels.

find out more at:

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting, Saturday, December 7th 2019

Speaking this month we have:

1st: Mary Fogarty – Colombia: from the Caribbean to the Magdalena and back again.

A trip full of colour and magic and unexpected challenges.

Mary started in Cartagena, with a rainbow of colours in every street, and then left the Caribbean behind to take the Toto Express – a small dodgy van, which left at 4am – to Mompox, on the magical Magdalena river. The Toto Express trundled along behind endless lines of trucks for hours of dark, but finally the sun came up and a green wonderworld emerged, culminating in Mompox, a fairytale place by the vast Magdalena, where the trees are full of iguanas and dugout boats turn up selling pineapples and papaya.

After hours of dreamy wonder spent by and on this magnificent river, there was another hairy journey back to the Caribbean … this time to Santa Marta, where the beach meets the port, and film crews are recruiting by the water’s edge.

Mary left this edgy city for Tayrona National Park, used by the infamous narcotraffickers for smuggling out their stuff in the 70s and 80s, and now one of the most beautiful natural paradises in the world. Warned to take mosquito cream and lots of water, no-one, however, suggested climbing shoes – and the route she was to take up the mountain to find an old indigenous site involved some HUGE rocks, where the only way up was to use the ropes – in Clarks sandals this proved to be quite the challenge, but she got there!

2nd: Andy Skillen – Walking with bears: on foot adventures with polars and grizzlies

Andy has spent much of his career flat on his face in the mud, snow, water and, well anything else that happens to be there, to bring the world unique images of grizzly and polar bears…on foot. As one of just 4 photographers worldwide to take people to se​e arctic giants on their terms, as well as frequenting a whole host of ‘off the beaten track’ brown bear locations, Andy has a unique take on what it is to work with and photograph these icons of the wilderness. Join us in the auditorium and hear of some of the more hair-raising encounters that Andy has gone through in his pursuit of recording ursine behaviour…

Biography:

Andy Skillen is a multi-award-winning wildlife photographer who has documented the natural world for 25 years. Published on a global basis, much of his workload is on specific projects for the world’s leading organisations. In addition, Andy supplies a limited edition, fine art collection with his work is exhibited in galleries in the UK and overseas and also undertakes private commissions for collectors worldwide. As well as the artistic side, Andy also leads groups on specialist photographic adventures in Africa, South America and the Arctic, and is one of only four photographers worldwide to lead polar bear safaris on foot.  Andy is also on the judging panel for a number of photo competitions and a regular speaker and panelist for National Geographic Traveller in the UK, as well as being a fixture on the speaking and after-dinner circuit.

For Andy, the power of photography has also been about the communication of the conservation message, and his collections are inspired by that rationale. 

Find out more at:

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting, Saturday, November 2nd 2019

This month we have:

AGM : The clubs AGM starts at 1:00 pm (card carrying members only), then at 2.30 the meeting begins

Speaking this month we have:

1st Richard Harpham – Exploring and Mapping the North Seal River, Manitoba

Richard Harpham FRGS is no stranger to adventure having completed over 10,000 miles of human powered expeditions by canoe, kayak, bike and on ski. His adventures have including London to Marrakech by bike and kayak, sea kayaking 1000 miles from Vancouver to Alaska on the Inside Passage and canoeing the Yukon River on numerous occasions.

This proved to be a good warm up for the North Seal River project in Northern Manitoba. Rich, his wife Ashley and Canadian explorers Hap and Andrea Wilson spent two weeks exploring and mapping the river system of Lakes and Class II/III rapids. This remote wilderness nestled in between the eskers and lakes of the Boreal Forest is almost 300 miles from the nearest road and certainly far from help. The team battled large rapids, heavy snow fall and freezing temperatures on their journey mapping the river.

They witnessed nature up close and raw with wolves, bears and moose for company. This area is the traditional hunting grounds of the Dene people who  used the giant eskers from the glacial retreat as their highways through the region.

Rich writes for many different magazines and also speaks about his adventures and social entrepreneurship as an inspirational speaker.  In the UK Rich works as a professional instructor and coach in their family run business Canoe Trail which offers canoeing, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding just one hour of London and has been voted Top 52 things to do in the world by Lonely Planet and No. 3 best place in the UK to stand up paddle board by Red Bull Magazine.  They run Duke of Edinburgh Programmes, corporate events and adventure school youth programmes as well as canoeing expeditions to Scotland and Canada.  

Rich is a born storyteller with plenty of amusing tales and inspiring accounts of authentic adventure.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.  Come and hear first hand about their incredible adventure in this remote wilderness, the highs and lows and getting stranded when the float plane hit a rock. 

Find out more at:

2nd: Victor Murineanu – A journey across the Atlantic Ocean

“Every November since Christopher Columbus first discovered the Trade Winds, yachts of various sizes set sail from the Canary Islands on a 2,700 nautical miles westward journey across the Atlantic to the Caribbean. This is the story of my experience crossing the pond, a 3 week long adventure.

Victor’s Instagram handles:

  • @odyseasailing – sailing related                                                     
  • @victorius000 – personal profile.

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here

London Meeting, Saturday, October 5th 2019

Speaking this month we have:

1st: Russell Maddicks – Island Hopping in Honduras

Russell Maddicks goes in search of Garifuna drums, Henry Morgan’s hideaway, and the undersea wonders of the MesoAmerican Barrier Reef in Central America’s Caribbean gem

In this talk, travel writer and guide book author Russell Maddicks goes beyond the media stereotypes to show the other side of Honduras: the laid back Bay Islands with their rich Garifuna culture, the tiny coral atolls of the Cayos Cochinos. the vibrant mainland port of La Ceiba, and the thickly-forested Nombre de Dios mountain chain that offers hiking in the Pico Bonito National Park, and whitewater rafting in the Rio Cangrejal.

About the Speaker

Russell Maddicks is a BBC-trained journalist and travel writer who has spent the last 20 years exploring the countries of Latin America and publishing his experiences in print, online and in social media. A graduate in Economic and Social History from the University of Hull, England, he is fluent in Spanish and loves nothing better than mastering the country-specific slang of the Latin American countries he visits.

He has worked as a reporter and editor at the Daily Journal newspaper in Caracas, the editor of a webzine aimed at the Latin American youth market called Loquesea! (Whatever!), and for 10 years worked as a regional specialist at the BBC covering political developments and general news across Latin America.

He is the author of travel guides to Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Mexico, Nicaragua and Venezuela, and has written for numerous international publications, including BBC Travel, National Geographic Traveller, Wanderlust Magazine, the Mexico News Daily, Latino Life Magazine, ArtNews, and Songlines.

In 2015, his book Culture Smart! Ecuador was awarded the Gold Prize at the Pearl of the Pacific International Travel Journalism Awards at the Ecuadorian International Tourism Fair (FITE) in Guayaquil.

An accomplished public speaker, he has given illustrated talks on Latin American travel destinations at the World Travel Market in London, the Globetrotter’s Club, the Telegraph Outdoor and Adventure Travel Show, Destinations: The Holiday and Travel Show, Nat Geo Traveller’s Travel Geeks, and at UK colleges and universities.

You can follow his Latin American travels on Twitter and Instagram

2nd Katrina Megget – A long, hard walk down New Zealand

Katrina Megget takes on the challenge of tackling her self-doubt to see whether she can walk 1,864 miles along the Te Araroa Trail down the length of New Zealand. Little did she know quite how physically and mentally demanding it would be.

Katrina will also detail some of the highlights during her adventure as well as some of the life-changing lessons she learnt along the way. 

In this talk, freelance healthcare and adventure travel journalist and awesomeness coach Katrina Megget details some of the challenges she faced during her four months walking the North Island of New Zealand before being forced to quit the trail after a knee injury – from the mind-numbing monotony of beach walking to the muddy rigours of Raetea Forest, from battling 110 km wind gusts on exposed mountain tops to almost drowning during a river crossing, and then having to deal with the concept of failure when injury struck.

About the speaker: Katrina Megget is a freelance healthcare and adventure travel journalist with work published in The Telegraph, Scientific American, Trek and Mountain Magazine, Outdoor Enthusiast and New Zealand Wilderness Magazine. Born and bred in New Zealand, Katrina has spent the past 13 years in the UK.

Despite always having a love of nature and the outdoors, it has only been in the past five or so years that Katrina has embraced her adventurous streak to explore the mountainous and wild places of the UK and New Zealand, and also taking on the challenge to climb 40 volcanoes by the age of 40.

Having suffered from chronic self doubt and low self esteem, Katrina is challenging her self-limiting beliefs to push herself outside her comfort zone to achieve goals and dreams she thought she wasn’t good enough to achieve, last year walking 1,242 miles down the length of New Zealand. Now through her blog she raises awareness of self-doubt and its debilitating effects and to show that it doesn’t have to hold us back from achieving something incredible because everyone is more capable and awesome than they think they are. 

Katrina can be found

Admission costs, we charge a small cash fee of £3 for Globetrotters members and £6 for non-members on the door to cover our expenses, tea/coffee and biscuits are included free in the interval between the talks.

You do not need to be a member to attend, and we do not sell advanced tickets, please just come on the day, the doors open at 2:15pm and the program starts around 2:30pm with each talk lasting between 45 – 60 minutes.

London branch meetings are held at The Church of Scotland, Crown Court, behind the Fortune Theatre in Covent Garden the first Saturday of each month, unless there is a UK public holiday that weekend.

There is no London meeting in August, but we start afresh each September. If you would like to keep up to date with what’s happening at the Globetrotters London meetings and to be sent email reminders prior to the meeting, please sign up here