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Sat 18th May 2024 at 1:30 pm

Pirates & Privateers Out of Bristol

Mark Steeds


Event Details

Tickets £4 | The Mendip, The Princess Theatre and Arts Centre

During the 17th and 18th centuries, Bristol had the largest fleet of privateers in Great Britain. The number of vessels and men far outnumbered the slaving ships operating from the port. A ‘Letter Of Marque’ gave the Captain the power to attack any of the Sovereign’s enemies and this licence was much abused and led to piracy on a grand scale.

This talk offers an insight into the lives and times of these Buccaneers and their adventures in the Caribbean, the Coast of Darien and into the Great Southern Ocean and New Spain.

These seafarers were daring skilled seamen, resourceful and at times incredibly brutal. Their exploits have fired the imagination of numerous writers and they have become the stuff of myth and legend which is still so potent today.

Mark Steeds is a former draughtsman and current publican of some 30 years standing, keen on trying to right old wrongs. Interested in all aspects of Bristol’s past but especially the city’s maritime and literary history, he co-authored the Fiducia Press book, Pirates and Privateers Out of Bristol, with Ken Griffiths.

Keen to see a long overdue memorial to enslavement in Bristol, Mark wrote Bristol Radical History Group’s first ever pamphlet Cry Freedom, Cry Seven Stars, and co-authored the groups best-selling book, From Wulfstan to Colston – launched on the very weekend that the slave trading tyrant’s statue was dumped in the city’s docks.

He’s noted for his irreverent and chippy walks and talks, sometimes in conjunction with ‘Radical Rog’.

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