Cambridge Society Events in the Spring

Dear member

After a short break in February, the diary of events is picking up again, with a couple of “free entry” events in March, plans for a weekend visit in April and dates are now confirmed for the AGM (22nd May) and the Garden Party at the Embassy (31st May). These are different from the dates initially penciled in, and the Fingask Follies event is now rolled into the Garden Party, so please do update your diary.

Add to that the regular Monthly Drinks and there is plenty to choose from.

Wed 7th March 19:00 – Monthly Drinks

Come and join us from 7pm to meet up for an informal evening.  All Oxford and Cambridge Alumni and their friends are warmly welcome. Murphy's-House1

Just mention “Oxbridge” at the bar for a discounted price on the pint of beer. Typical pub food and soft drinks also available.

Murphy’s House – 10 rue de la Chaussée d’Antin, 75009 Paris.  Metro Opéra – RER Auber – vélib: station 2015 rue Louis le Grand.


Sun 18th March 16:00 – Wells Consort – Concert

Tallis, Sheppard, Gesualdo, Purcell, Stainer : Four centuries of music for the Passion in England and Italy.

wells consort


Eglise Notre Dame du Saint Sacrement, 68bis rue de Turenne, 75003 Paris (Métro St Sébastien-Froissart (line 8) or Saint Paul (line 1).Entrance free, with a collection after the concert.



Weds 21st March 13:00 – Guided visit of Christie’s Auction Rooms and Current Exhibitions


We have been invited to a guided tour of Christie’s at 9 avenue Matignon (including the 8 highlights of the legendary Rockefeller collection) at 1pm on Wednesday 21st March. Entrance is free, but numbers are limited to 20-25 in total so if you would like to take part, please contact Registrations will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis.


Sat 24th March 17:00 – The Cancer Research Boat Races

We will be goading our Oxford chums along, cheering the Light Blues as they pull, hopefully, to victory on Saturday 24th March. Come along to the Bowler, rue d’Artois, Paris 8e where we will gather from 5pm to watch both the Women’s and Men’s races. The Women’s Race starts at 17:31 Paris time, and the Men’s Race is at 18:31. Food will also be available afterwards for those who would like to stay on. There is no need to book, just come along and cheer…


As an alternative, if you live in the Saint-Germain-en-Laye area, there will be a gathering at the Bitter End, 20 rue Saint-Pierre, also from 5pm, for a few Happy Hour beers then maybe an early curry in the next-door Indian. If you would like to join in, contact Peter Salinson on

Sat 24th March 19:30 – St Matthew’s Passion at the Théatre des Champs-Elysées

After the Boat Race, why not take in JS Bach’s St Matthew’s Passion. Our members are offered a 30% discount on normal tariffs – you should enter the reduction code GBPASTMATT2403 when making your booking. The performers are all British:


Sarah Tynan soprano
Claudia Huckle contralto
Mark Padmore ténor (L’Evangéliste)
Roderick Williams baryton (Le Christ)
Jessica Cale soprano
Eleanor Minney mezzo-soprano
Hugo Hymas ténor
Matthew Brook baryton-basse

Mark Padmore direction
Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
Choir of the Age of Enlightenment

Mon 26th March 18:30 – Embassy Alumni Groups Mixer

The Embassy is organising an Alumni Groups Mixer on their terrace on Monday 26th March. The bar will be open from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.


cocktailparty1bannerAs numbers allocated to each group are very limited, the places allocated to our Society will be allocated on a strict first-come, first-served basis and later applications will be put on a waiting list in case the Embassy is able to increase our allocation nearer the date. If you would like to come along, please send an email to as soon as possible. You will get an acknowledgement to confirm whether you have one of the available places or are on the waiting list.

Wed 4th April 19:00 – Monthly Drinks

Come and join us from 7pm to meet up for an informal evening.  All Oxford and Cambridge Alumni and their friends are warmly welcome.

Just mention “Oxbridge” at the bar for a discounted price on the pint of beer. Typical pub food and soft drinks also available.



Murphy’s House – 10 rue de la Chaussée d’Antin, 75009 Paris.  Metro Opéra – RER Auber – vélib: station 2015 rue Louis le Grand.



Tue 17th April 20:00 – The Philarmonia Orchestra at the Théatre des Champs-Elysées

The Philarmonia Orchestra is resident at the South Bank Centre, London and conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen. They are perfoming:



Beethoven Symphonie n° 2
Mahler Symphonie n° 1 « Titan »

Our members are offered a 30% discount on normal tariffs – you should enter the reduction code PHIORCH1704 when making your booking.


Sat 28th and Sun 29th April – Weekend visit to the “Forges de Buffon”

Peter Salinson has put together a visit programme for the last weekend in April, around a visit to the “Forges de Buffon” museum in Buffon near Montbard in Chablis country.


About a two hour drive out of Paris down the A6, you will arrive in Buffon village just after lunch – which you can take on your way down or on arrival in Buffon – for a tour booked at 2:30pm of the museum which represents an 18th Century iron works complex, which employed 500 at its peak. Between the museum visit and dinner it will be possible to visit Monbard, or the castle ruins (and cheese) of Epoisses or the splendid restored medieval chateau of Ancy-le-Franc. Dinner and accommodation are at “Les Maronniers” .


On Sunday, you are free to go sightseeing south to nearby Alesia (Vercingetorix museum), Abbaye de Fontenay (outstanding cistercian domaine) or even Vezelay. Alternatively, North to Chablis (busy busy Sunday market), Auxerre, or even golf at Tanlay. All these places are fairly near to the A6 autoroute on the way home. Each participant will pay their own way, with costs including €8 for the Forges de Buffon, €20-€30 in the restaurant and €70 plus breakfast for the hotel. A full programme will be developed once those members interested have signed up. Please contact Peter on to be added to the list.

Tue 22nd May 18:30 – Annual General Meeting followed by Trevor Brown Bursary student presentations

The Annual General Meeting will take place on Tuesday 22nd May. The venue, in Central Paris, will be confirmed in due course.


After the AGM, we are delighted that four of the five students who benefited from the Trevor Brown Bursary in 2017 will come to give us a presentation of their project work. Not only will this give us insight into their fields of interest, it will also demonstrate the value generated by our Bursary programme. For those who wish to know more about the Trevor Brown Bursary, a brief description is attached.

Thur 31st May – Annual Garden Party at the British Ambassador’s Residence

We are delighted to announce that the Ambassador has again agreed to open his Residence to host the 2018 Garden Party, which will take place in the evening of Thursday 31st May.



This year, it is Cambridge’s turn to organise the event and we have decided to include the Fingask Follies musical review  as its high point. There are still a few details to be sorted out, but expect invitations to be sent out early in April.



Tony Banton

Hon. Secretary

06 25 19 35 31

Cambridge Society of Paris News Bulletin 5

From hedonism to asceticism. From the fabulous Cambridge Christmas Party to the first event of 2018, The Cambridge Union Challenge Debate. And what an event it was, long to be recorded in the annals of the Cambridge Society of Paris and the Grimoire of the Cambridge Union.

To whatever exotic locations the Union may travel in the future, Paris, and the debate against the Cambridge Society of Paris, will rest forever the first occasion, in its 160-year history, on which the Cambridge Union debated outside the UK.

When I threw down the gauntlet and challenged the Union to a debate on our home territory, here in Paris, the response from the Union was immediate, enthusiastic, and positive. Very impressive.

The Union team was headed by Jonah Surkes, their president, supported by Tom McArthur, Vice President, plus Penelope Jones and Jali Packer their chosen speakers.

The event was held on Saturday 27th January 2018 in the exotic salon of the Hôtel Païva (of silver bath fame) at 25 Avenue des Champs Elysées, debating the motion “This house believes that we shall have a post human economy run by robots with artificial intelligence within twenty years.”

In support of the motion, the Cambridge Society of Paris, through Edward Archer and myself, plus our guest speaker, writer, journalist and futurologist, Calum Chace. Against the motion the Cambridge Union, through Jali and Penny and their guest speaker, computer programmer, founder of Snips and, elected as a TR35 by the MIT Technology Review and as a “30 under 30” by Forbes, Rand Hindi.

Suffice to say that .. we lost! Maybe, with a slight adjustment of the wording. Maybe with a closer adherence to the core topic, the result .. well “he would say that wouldn’t he!” Well done the Cambridge Union.

In twenty years or perhaps fifty years’ time, we will know the answer. Meanwhile, the debate was an outstanding success. A benchmark in the history of CamSoc and the Union.

I would like to thank everyone for their help and, in particular, Edward and Anne Archer for inviting several of the Union members to stay, and for hosting such a magnificent dinner the night before. With so many young holders of Cambridge Firsts around us, I have seldom known such interesting post dinner discussion.

A short video of the debate has been up-loaded to our new You Tube Channel, which can be visited via:  When you look at the video, could you also please click on Subscribe to become a subscriber. We want to create a dedicated name for the Channel but cannot do so until we have 100 subscribers. When I last looked we were at 58. Please help us to get to 100. No cost or obligation involved.

With best wishes,

Andrew Lyndon-Skeggs

President, Cambridge Society of Paris

11th February 2018


Cambridge Society of Paris News Bulletin 4

Dear Member,

‘Tis the Season for Seasonal Quizzes so, in keeping with the spirit of the season … Who said What about the Cambridge Christmas Party?

1. It was a dream come true
2. A glorious triumph
3. So well organised, the music sensational, and the dancing lovely to watch
4. Tous les musiciens que j’ai revus après ont été enchantés
5. I amazed myself by doing a mini charleston .. which I have not done for decades
6. Last night was like flying through a time machine! WONDERFUL !!!!
7. What a triumph. Certainly the best party I have been to since I arrived in Paris
8. Fantastic setting and a great bunch of people
9. Dazzled by the ambiance and excitement of the evening
10. So much enjoyed by all, and beyond all our dreams

A. Peter Salinson
B. Elizabeth Schofield
C. Anthony Langdale
D. Sophie Loussouarn
E. Clare Hohler
F. Barbara Albasio
G. Iain Cheyne
H. Nigel Moss
I. Lou Lauprète
J. Patricia Hawkes

Well, certainly, with an attendance approaching 400, including 35 musicians. With the tap dancer, magician, light shows and opera singing automatons. With the wonderful costumes and stunning dancing, it was undoubtedly an exceptional occasion and a terrific Cambridge send-off to the year.

As for the quiz .. I have no intention whatsoever of giving the answers! But thank you, all of you, and a good many more, for your wonderful and enthusiastic letters. Thank you also Tony for your massive back-up, analysis and supervision of the complicated guest lists. Outside CamSoc itself, thank you to the many musicians. Thank you Philippine Chombart de Lauwe and Aygline de Clinchamps for organising the food, and Marie-Mathilde Blanckaert for gathering the highly efficient and glamorous bar team. And thank you Yves Riquet; Paris Boogie Speakeasy was the inspiration for the entire show.

On the basis that a picture is worth a thousand words, here is a video clip of the evening. Watch it soon, because it will expire in a few days time (though we will be uploading a permanent version to You Tube and to our web site):

Early in 2018, I will write outlining the objectives of the Cambridge Society of Paris for the forthcoming year. Meanwhile, I hope you all have a wonderful New Year.

With best wishes,

President, Cambridge Society of Paris