Mike Wabe

Location: Thetford, Norfolk
About me...

My work history is 29 years a police officer, followed by 4 years as a manager for Autoglass, followed by 10 and a half years as a prison officer and ending with 3 years in a secondary school as an Inclusion Manager (dealing with all things behavioural). I stopped work in November 2013 because I was not enjoying it any more, and I could afford to do so. I have been giving the talks and presentations for several years now, and my bookings virtually all come from word of mouth recommendations, or because the booker has seen me “perform” somewhere. I became the Town Crier of Thetford in March 2013, and thoroughly enjoy it. I do several Council events such as Mayor Making, the Mayor’s Ball, the Christmas lights switch on and so forth. I also do private work such as shop openings, wake-up calls to brides.  I have entered a few Town Crier Competitions, including the World Tournament in 2014. I am a wedding Toastmaster and I run my own murder mystery business. I love history, as might be noticed from the subjects of my talks.

About my talks ...

Some of the talks are Power Point presentations, otherwise I wear appropriate costume.

Fee:

The cost for any of the above presentations is £45, plus travelling costs. I don’t charge the current rate of 45p per mile, I work out what my car does per gallon, so it is much cheaper. I will give you the total cost (fee + travel) when you contact me so there are no nasty surprises.

I am happy to travel anywhere to deliver a presentation, but the further you are away from East Anglia, the more the travel cost will be.

If a speaker lets your organisation down, it is always worth giving me a call, because I am happy to help at short notice if I can.

My Contact Details:
Phone:

01842 755131

Does the Punishment fit the Crime? New talk for 2017

Public Speaker Mike Wabe talks about 'Does the Punishment Fit the Crime?'

Hear about some of the punishments meted out to wrongdoers in times past. Learn about the differences between the Stocks and the Pillory, and what they were used for. Discover the less benign punishments such as the Scold’s Bridle and Whipping. The middle part of the presentation is about the ultimate penalty – death! The last part I call “Confession is good for the soul“. Hear about the fiendish machines devised to inflict pain and humiliation on their hapless victims, in order to gain a confession. Learn what happens to the human body when subjected to such devices. This presentation is NOT for the faint of heart, but it is historically accurate. Today, the Tower of London is a tourist attraction, but it wasn’t always so. The horrors described in this presentation went on behind its thick walls.

Life in Medieval England

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I will be in authentic costume and will talk about life in medieval England from the point of view of feudal peasant and a Sergeant Templar. Everyday life, clothing food and the like will be discussed, as will the arms and armour of the time. The presentation will be illustrated with weapons and armour of the time, as well as everyday household items, which the audience is encouraged to handle.

Life and Death in a Victorian Gaol

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I will be in authentic costume and will tell of the life in a Victorian gaol. Discover what the term “hard labour” really meant. Learn the difference between a prison and a gaol, and between a convict and a prisoner. Hear all the grisly details of how both capital and corporal punishment was carried out. The presentation will be illustrated with items from the Victorian penal system, which the audience is encouraged to handle.

Foul Murders of East Anglia

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Hear about some of the solved and unsolved foul murders that took place in East Anglia in the 19th and 20th centuries. Discover how pretty Rose Harsent was murdered and the crime scene made to look like an accident. Learn how Robert Browning (no, not that one!) did to death 15-year-old Emma Rolfe. Find out why parts of poor Martha Sheward turned up all over Norwich. Hear why the Rayleigh Bath Chair Murder was so called, plus many more.

Witches and Witch Hunting in East Anglia

Witchfinder

Magic is one of those subjects that interests everyone, even if it is only a passing interest. Witches have always been associated with magic, so discover how a witch hunting mania swept through East Anglia. Hear how Matthew Hopkins spread terror amongst the populace and learn how he caused the deaths of so many women, although there were some men as well. Discover when the witch craze finally ended (or has it?) and see what you can do to protect yourself from a witch’s spell.

Britain's First Serial Killer

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Mary Ann Cotton, otherwise known as the Black Widow claims the right to be known as Britain’s first serial killer. Two decades before Jack the Ripper’s reign of terror, Mary Ann Cotton had already become a killing machine. But strangely, even crime historians, those familiar with the names of Shipman, Nilsen, Sutcliffe and West, know little or nothing of her. She has been largely erased from history and remains today only a half-remembered local curiosity, even in her native North East. In the 20 years from 1852 to 1872, Mary Ann Cotton killed some 21 people, whilst posing as a wife, widow, mother, nurse and friend. Among her victims were 8 of her own children, 7 stepchildren, her mother, 3 husbands, a lover and an inconvenient friend. Hear how she committed these dastardly crimes and wonder why she would do such a thing. Discover how she was eventually caught and what happened to her.

Canterbury Tales

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I will be in authentic costume and will tell of pilgrimages in general and describe some of the characters who went on Chaucer’s pilgrimage to the tomb of Thomas a’Beckett in Canterbury, telling the Tales as they went. I will then recount, in modern English, at least 3 of the Tales.
Please Note that Chaucer often used what can best be described as risqué language and this is repeated in the telling of the Tales.

History of the Town Crier

Thetford Town Crier, Mike Wabe is entering the World Championships.

I am the Town Crier of Thetford and I will be in full livery. I will deliver an interesting, humorous and informative presentation on the unique history of Town Criers. Hear about just how long ago that Town Criers were crying their messages (and what messages they were). Learn about such things as their livery, evolution, rationale, means of attracting attention and their connections with the law.

Father Christmas - Myths and Mistletoe

Public Speaker Mike Wabe talks about Father Christmas - Myths and Mistletoe.

Learn what the “Jolly Old Elf” has to say about mistletoe  – he’s not that impressed, I warn you –  and find out too,  why he is known by different names around the world. Discover how and why we celebrate Christmas when we do. Be surprised, and maybe event amazed, at when and how the traditions we currently associate with Christmas – cards, holly, mistletoe, crackers, turkeys to name but some – came about. The presentation ends with the recitation of Clement Clarke Moore’s famous poem A Visit From St Nicholas, now universally known as ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas.

 

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

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This presentation is a 60-minute adaptation of the famous Christmas story, and will be delivered by none other than Charles Dickens himself. Greedy, grasping Ebenezer Scrooge is visited on Christmas Eve by the ghost of his dead partner, Jacob Marley. Jacob regrets the error of his ways when he was alive, and seeks to rescue Scrooge from his fate. To do so, Marley arranges for Scrooge to be visited by 3 Spirits – The Ghost of Christmas Past, Present and Future. The Spirits show him the joy of Christmas and the wretchedness of his own existence. Inspired and chastened by what he sees Scrooge resolves to change, and from then on he embraces and promotes the true spirit of Christmas. As Tiny Tim says, “God bless us, everyone”!

Story Teller

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Story Teller – “No story lives unless someone wants to listen”  –  J K Rowling

Story telling is a dying art, but I have a repertoire of stories, tales, poems and downright lies with which to entertain you. To tell a story is to take the listener on a journey. And, like any journey, it may twist and turn, it may become dark, but eventually you will reach the destination safe and sound, and with the satisfying experience of having completed it. If you are an adult, I will take you back to your childhood, and you can lose yourself in the in the magic and mystery of the tales I will tell. If you are a child, I will enthral and entertain you with the pictures I will paint. In either case, let your imagination run riot! But be prepared for the occasional shiver to run up your spine as tales of the supernatural are brought to your ears.
I will deliver specially selected stories for occasions such as Christmas and Halloween.