Margaret Gilman

Location: Oakham, Rutland
About me...

I was educated at St. Helen’s grammar school and intended to do ‘A’ levels in French, German and Latin, but didn’t enjoy the literature, so left school after ‘O’ levels and went to the local Tech. where I got ‘A’ levels in physics, maths and further maths in one year. This enabled me to go to Manchester University, where I gained a B,Sc, Hons 1st class by the time I was 20. I now live in beautiful Rutland where my daughter and family lives. I enjoy visiting my son and his family in Kent when I get the chance.

I used to play the piano accordion in a band, and I play and sing with my autoharp. Every day, I still learn Italian, French, German and (sometimes) the direly difficult Hungarian, using Duolingo. I took an unpaid Italian Group for 16 years. Tai’chi is a highlight of the week. There are never enough hours in the day!

About my Talks...

My favourite is «  VIVA VERDI! – The Man, The Music » This seems to be everyone else’s favourite too. It has small edited extracts from a few of his operas, with images flashing in on the beat. I have had private tours of all his haunts and properties in Italy, and include details of his patriotic antics and battles with the censors.

The second one is « From Jodrell Bank to M82 Starburst », again with very small edited videos of various telescopes, optical and radio. It’s theme is mainly the history of Jodrell Bank Radio Telescope followed by various unusual types of telescope around the world, which look at the strangest things,,,….., So you know what to expect, it isn’t a technical boreathon but does involve Many Telescopes.

Each one can be adapted to last from 45-55 minutes.

I bring my own high powered laptop but do require a modern, high powered digital projector and sound system to link to it. Also, a screen is required. Both my Presentations use PowerPoint.


I will be charging £120 from 2024 plus nominal travel expenses, dependent on distance and time involved.

My Contact Details:

01572 770882

VIVA VERDI! - The Man, The Music

I have studied the entire life and music of this beloved operatic composer and have visited all his properties, theatres and haunts in Milan, Busseto and Le Roncole. I include in my Presentation, rare photos of these and other pertinent venues to which I have been privately invited. (Eg. Casa de Riposo, the musicians’ rest home in Milan, paid for exclusively by him, his theatre in Busseto and his permanent suite at The Grand Hotel in Milan.) I have heavily edited a chosen aria in a few of his operas and have the relevant pictures
flashing in on the beat. This is a lively, and favourite Presentation of mine. I give it without notes, in order to have a personal rapport with the audience.

From Jodrell Bank to M82 Starburst and Way Beyond.

A history of the Jodrell Bank (Lovell) radio Telescope from my time there whilst at Manchester University shortly after its inception, to the present day.
I follow this with details of some of the weirdest and latest telescopes around the world. Included are four very short (1-3 mins.) videos of some of these telescopes with appropriate music I haveedited. The final two slides show the future developments on the Jodrell Bank site and a video of the Lovell telescope in action.

This is not a very technical high-powered “boreathon” but suitable for all abilities who are interested in quirky scientific instruments found in some of the most inaccessible, remote locations.

Margaret Gilman Contact Details:

01572 770882

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