It’s #WoodbridgeWednesday and we wanted to shout from the rooftops about a very exciting event coming to town thanks to the Woodbridge Emporium.
The biggest-selling female historian in the UK is coming to Woodbridge.
Alison Weir who has published 23 titles and sold more than 2.7 million books – a million in the UK and more than 1.7 million in the USA – is going an illustrated talk on her novel Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen.
This is part of two concurrent series of books: Six Tudor Queens, comprising six novels on the wives of Henry VIII and England’s Medieval Queens, a quartet of historical works of non-fiction.
Jules Button who runs Woodbridge Emporium said: “We are absolutely over the moon to have Alison join us here in Woodbridge.
“Mrs Weir is a celebrated author and world-renowned historian and this is an amazing opportunity to meet her and hear more about this fabulous piece of work.”
Jane Seymour was the third of Henry VIII’s six wives and the book forms part of Mrs Weir’s Six Tudor Queens series, having previously written about Katherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn, Henry’s previous wives.
Mrs Weir said the project involved decades of extensive research during which she made an important discovery in an unlikely place – eBay.
While internet shopping the historian found a photograph of what she thought could be the ‘lost’ 16th-century portrait of Anne Boleyn, Queen of England.
There are only two authenticated ‘portrait types’ of Boleyn, one in the National Portrait Gallery (right), the other in Bradford Art Gallery but the snapshot – incorrectly labelled Lady Bergavenny – looks like it could be of a missing painting of her Coronation.
Another leading Tudor historian – Tracy Borman, joint Chief Curator for the Historic Royal Palaces and author of the forthcoming The Private Lives of the Tudors – said she agreed with Weir that the work could be genuine.
‘I’m very convinced by this,” she said. “It is hugely exciting.”
The original painting was sold in 1842 from Strawberry Hill, the Twickenham castle to a London art dealer.
He in turn sold it to Ralph Bernal, a British politician and collector who died in 1854.
Then the trail goes cold.
Mrs Weir said: “Someone might come forward and say they’ve got it.”
Copies of her book will be available at the Woodbridge event – which is to be held on June 2nd at 7.30pm at Woodbridge Library – for a discounted price.
Mrs Weir will sign copies after her talk.
Tickets for the talk cost £10 and include refreshments on the night as well as a “surprise”.
Tickets are available from Woodbridge Emporium at 66 Thoroughfare, Woodbridge, IP12 1AL, on 01394 382382 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
If you cannot attend the event but would like to request a signed copy of Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen, contact Woodbridge Emporium using the details above.