• Overview
  • Location
  • Speakers
  • The Project
  • 2016 Podcast
  • You might also like

Winchester, Early Medieval Power and Faith

Join us on Saturday 20 October 2018 in the King Alfred Chamber at Winchester's Guildhall for this one-day symposium dedicated to exploring the great churches of Winchester at the time of the Anglo-Saxons and Normans.

Headlined by broadcaster and historian Dr Janina Ramirez, confirmed speakers for the day’s programme include Professor Martin Biddle, Emeritus Fellow, Hertford College, Oxford, Professor David Bates, Emeritus Professor in Medieval History, University Of East Anglia, and the symposium will be chaired by Dr Ryan Lavelle, Reader in Early Medieval History at the University of Winchester.

Download Symposium Programme.


In the middle of the 7th century, the main minster church of the early kingdom of Anglo-Saxon Wessex was founded in the old Roman city of Venta Belgarum. As the Anglo-Saxon cathedral, Old Minster was the seat of the bishop of Winchester for centuries after, often enjoying good relations with Anglo-Saxon kings and queens. After the death of King Alfred the Great in 899, two new churches were founded in Winchester. New Minster, which lay only a few metres to the north of its Old Minster, was a new royal church for a dynasty that aspired to be rulers of England, and Nunnaminster, founded for a community of women closely linked to the royal family on land owned by King Alfred’s widow. Old Minster lives on as Winchester cathedral, while Nunnaminster and New Minster (as Hyde Abbey) survived and flourished through to Henry VIII’s Reformation. At the heart of Anglo-Saxon and Norman Winchester, the resting places of royal fathers, mothers, sons and daughters, these three churches would see the twists and turns of reform and renewal, of conquest and civil war and were to provide the energy behind outbursts of cultural creativity whose legacy we still enjoy today.


Tickets are available to book online or by calling Hampshire Cultural Trust 9:00am - 4:30pm, Monday to Friday on 01962 678140.

Day tickets

Day tickets include the full symposium programme, lunch and refreshments.

  • Early bird: £55, available up to and including 1 October 2018
  • Standard: £65
  • Student and unemployed concession: £55

Half day tickets

Half day tickets are available for either the morning or afternoon session and include refreshments, but not lunch.

  • Half day ticket: £45

Book Tickets Online

    Special requirements 

    If you have access or dietary requirements, please email Gemma Holsgrove, royalcity@hampshireculturaltrust.org.uk, by 15 October 2018.

    "We may think of the Anglo-Saxon period as a dark age. But the royal city of Winchester is a perfect example of how vibrant, cosmopolitan, sophisticated and rich this time was. Heart of Wessex under Alfred the Great, the city underwent substantial reinventions throughout the ninth, tenth and eleventh centuries. With the Benedictine revolution, centred on the massive construction projects of King Edgar and Bishop Aethelwold, Winchester became one of the most impressive cities in England"

    Dr Janina Ramirez

    • Winchester early