The Stationers' Company
The City of London Livery Company for the Communications and Content Industries


26 MARCH 2024

Literary Lunch with Margaret Willes - 26th March 2024

On March 26th A full house of Stationers and friends attended the latest in our Literary Lunches at Ye Olde Watling pub to celebrate the launch of Margaret Willes’ latest book “ Liberty over London Bridge” which had already received many excellant reviews in the national press. The book covers the extensive history of Southwark just south of London Bridge.

Mike James introduced two Stationers friends in Margaret  and Georgina Brown who would be carrying out the interview in between two courses of excellant “pub grub” washed down with both beer and wine.
Georgina asked Margaret about the inspiration of her new publication with the initial idea coming from Liveryman Jessica Kingsley which then it gathered pace to encompass one of the most interesting and historical parts of London, although many of the stories had remained untold for centuries.
The chapters which have received the most interest are probably “ The Bishop’s Geese” which outlines The Bishop of Winchester licensing brothels in the medieval period and “Pathways in the Sky’ which  covers the introduction of the Railways into the area and dramatically changed the landscape, and was generally not welcome by the majority of the local residents.
Margaret was asked by Oliver Gadsby ‘If not the present period when would she have liked to live in the area”. Without hesitation she replied that being in the area during The Shakespearian era , with The Globe just being one of many Theatres in Southwark must have been really exciting, although she would not have been too keen on the idea of bear baiting.
All agreed that Margaret has a unique skill in making history assailable and readable for everyone and Georgina finished by saying that “Liberty over London Bridge” was yet another page tuner from one of our favorite Liveryman.
These events  are more like friends having a party with the added benefit that approximately £10,000 has now been donated to our charities. If you have not yet attended a Literary Lunch then do please check on our website for updates on future lunches