Friday 13th September 2024, 3:00pm

Lost Lingo

Decoding the 1920s Novels for Today’s Reader

Dust off the pages of Agatha Christie’s Golden Age novels to uncover quips and references that have faded over the last one hundred years. Kate Gingold called on an amazing range of experts to throw light on obscure phrases from the 1920s novels for her glossary, Agatha Annotated, and will be sharing this insider knowledge which has made reading Christie even more fun!

Parodies and pop culture phrases that were familiar to readers in the 1920s are now lost to time, confusing today’s readers who often skip over them to get to “whodunit”. With the benefit of modern technology, Kate deciphered these cryptic references and built a comprehensive database of the results. You’ll hear some fascinating anecdotes from her research.

Readers will enjoy an even greater appreciation of Christie’s early novels – and sense of humour – with this deep dive into the language and context of the 1920s.


Getting to the venue

The Spanish Barn is in the grounds of Torre Abbey. This is on Torquay seafront and walkable from most hotels in the area. It is also right next to Torquay Train Station. The nearest car park is Torre Valley - Torbay Council


There is a drop-off point and limited parking within the grounds for disabled visitors. Entry to the Spanish Barn is relatively level, but there are a few cobble stones to cross, before entering the completely flat interior. We have space for wheelchairs, although if you let us know in advance, we can ensure that there is ample dedicated space for the number of wheelchair users. We have also raised the height of the main stage this year, so that guest speakers can easily be seen. We also have two TV screens midway down the barn screening what is happening on the stage.

We also have a disabled toilet available to the rear of the Spanish Barn.

If you have any particular access requirements or enquiries, do please get in touch and we will do whatever we feasibly can to accommodate you. Please email