Buxton Pump Room Talk – Surgery in the Long Eighteenth Century


With Steve Bacon

Buxton Pump Room Talk: Surgery in the Long Eighteenth Century

The health-giving properties of the spa water at Buxton were well known in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and were a draw not only for suffering patients but also a variety of medical practitioners.

This illustrated and well-resourced talk and demonstration will focus primarily on the development of surgery during the ‘Long Eighteenth Century’, the age of the ‘Enlightenment’, but will also make reference to the other types of practitioners, only too eager to assist the chronically ill.

Using a mixture of museum-quality replicas as well as genuine antique instruments, supported by facsimile and original texts, a variety of procedures will be demonstrated and explained, and put into the context of the advancing scientific understanding and theories of the time.

Demonstrations will include, but not be limited to, that old favourite therapeutic bleeding as well as capital amputation.

Come spend a diverting evening as an eighteenth century medical student.

Steve appears as an earlier Tudor surgeon at a reinactment event

About Steve…

Milton Keynes-based Steve is a retired Primary School teacher, whose initial specialism was science.  However, he developed a passion for history and over 20 years ago started a heritage business, Live’n History.

Since then he has been researching medical history, particularly surgery,  and has developed a range of period specific talks which he delivers regularly to a variety of groups, including U3A’s and local history societies.

He has extensive experience of delivering presentations in museums (including undertaking research for the Wellcome Library and developed several of their video conferencing packages), heritage sites and TV and film work and has developed a series of characters and presentations often on the darker side of life in the past.

Steve is currently engaged in developing a one-off performance based presentation for the Royal College of Physicians.


Wednesday 8th June 2022 Doors open at 6.30pm Talk starts at 7pm sharp The talk will last around 60 minutes, and there will be time for questions and discussion at the end.


This talk will take place in the Buxton Pump Room, opposite the Buxton Crescent. The Crescent Buxton SK17 6BH The entrance for the talk will be at the right hand door of the Pump Room. There is level access. For more details please email hello@buxtoncrescenttrust.org Call: 01298 214577


£10 full price adult tickets £9 concessions* £8 friends of Buxton Crescent Heritage Trust Tickets are for unreserved seats. *65+, Full time student, in receipt of benefits (please bring proof of concession on the evening).


The Buxton Pump Room is accessible by wheelchair over a small ramp at the door. For more information about venue accessibility, please visit our Accessibility Page We will do our best to make the presentation accessible to all guests. Please let us know in advance if you have any specific access needs we can cater for, such as having a large print copy of the presentation notes.

Covid Safety

We're following the guidance of the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions guidance on appropriate Covid precautions. Therefore, we still advise that visitors while inside our venues, still wear a face mask, wash and sanitise hands, and maintain social distancing.

Any Questions?

If you need to know more, or have a question, please feel free to get in touch...

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