Candidate Profile

Provided by

History - General
History - Naval
History and historical characters have always been a passion and living close to the sea led Michael Lister to develop a lifelong interest in all topics related to the sea. He is the educational link with the trustees of H.M.S. Trincomalee the oldest ship afloat which is berthed in Hartlepool. Michael was privileged to be invited to deliver the annual keynote speech on board the Trincomalee to commemorate the centenary of the Bombardment of Hartlepool where the first civilian was killed on home soil in World War 1.

Michael has been an historian for over 40 years with wide ranging teaching experience in a number of educational establishments ranging Secondary and Further Education to being Principal of an elementary school in British Columbia, Canada. Having always enjoyed public speaking on a wide array of topics Michael was a finalist in the Kinsman Public Speaking Competition in Canada and has lectured on many topics on a part time basis at Durham University and a variety of local institutions.

A natural communicator Michael enjoys a wide variety of interests. For a number of years, he reported on rugby matches for a selection of local and national newspapers. Since attending Durham University, where he was awarded half colours for chess, bridge and basketball, he has followed these pursuits and is currently chairperson of the Hartlepool Bridge Club.
Outline of Talks Intriguing characters behind the expansion of the British Empire across the world

1 Sir Henry Morgan pirate or patriot
A Welshman who established British interests in the Caribbean. How did he rise from a pirate to be a Knight of the realm?

2 General James Wolfe
The general who conquered the French in Canada and ensured North America spoke English. This great soldier fought for King George II in Europe; helped to defeat the Jacobite Rebellion and won the battle of Quebec.

3 Lord Clive of India
Clive laid the foundation for the British Raj in India. He joined the East India Company then became a great soldier. He made a great fortune and returned to England. He was a deeply disturbed person.

4 Captain James Cook
Britain and the world’s greatest explorer and navigator. This talk deals with his first voyage on the Endeavour which brought New Zealand, Australia and many areas of the Pacific under British control.

5 Stamford Raffles
The young man from humble beginnings who joined the East India Company and rose to prominence through hard work and vision. He brought areas of the East Indies under British influence and is widely recognised as the founder of Singapore.

6 Cecil Rhodes
A controversial character who gave his name to Rhodesia. The talk will examine his life and character and how this influenced his life in South Africa. It will look at how opinions are divided today!

7 Captain William Bligh - Villain or Hero
He achieved notoriety when the Mutiny on the Bounty occurred. This talk will deal with the greatest open boat journey of all time (3.016 miles) and his later career. How Hollywood destroyed his reputation.

8 Captain Cuthbert Collingwood
An examination of his rise to fame from modest beginnings. His part in the famous battles of The Glorious First June; The Battle of Cape St. Vincent and being 2nd. in Charge at the Battle of Trafalgar as well as his time based in Minorca as the Commander in Chief Mediterranean.

9 Lord Thomas Cochrane
A fascinating and complex Scotsman regarded by many as the finest frigate captain ever. He combined a great career in the Navy with a period in prison and helping Chile, Peru and Brazil gain their independence.

10 War at Sea in the First World War Part 1 1914 – 16
Examining the actions in the First World War at sea including the Battles of Coronel, Falkland Islands and Dogger Bank as well as restricted submarine warfare.

11 War at Sea in the First World War Part 2 1916 – 19
This talk deals with the Battle of Jutland. The crippling effect of unrestricted submarine warfare and Britain’ ultimate victory.
Well known speaker in the North East and have delivered talks in various places such as the Captains cabin on HMS Trincomalee and Durham University. Has for many years been an educational consultant for HMS Trincomalee; member of the board of trustees of Captain Cook's museum in Middlesbrough and Chairman of Hartlepool Bridge Club. Has delivered talks for Fred Olsen; Saga and Cunard cruise lines. Live within 30 minutes of Newcastle.
Michael has spoken on Queen Mary II in May 2017 M717, Saga Sapphire 18 March 2017, Braemar July 2016, Saga Pearl II December 2017, Black Watch twice e.g. April 2015, Saga Sapphire Mar 2017 and others.