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    An Extra Pair of Hands: Friendship and Care

    Sat 30 Oct, 6.45pm UTC
    Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall
    Literature & poetry
    book now
    Michael Rosen, novelist

    Michael Rosen, Romalyn Ante and Christie Watson come together with chair Kate Mosse to share their experiences of our National Health Service.

    They tell their stories and discuss the care involved in friendship – and the friendship involved in care

    Michael Rosen’s Many Different Kinds of Love is a resounding tribute to the NHS and the human spirit from a dearly beloved poet. Combining new poems with nurses’ medical diaries and his own reflections, this powerful account of Rosen’s desperate struggle with Covid-19 celebrates the power of community and the indomitable spirits of the people who keep us well.

    Award-winning poet Romalyn Ante also works full-time as a specialist nurse practitioner. Her debut collection, Antiemetic for Homesickness, is rooted in care of all kinds. Ante writes with generosity and tenderness, exploring migration, nursing and community in a dislocated world.

    In The Courage to Care, her remarkable new book about nursing, family and sacrifice, Christie Watson, the bestselling author and a nurse with more than 20 years’ experience, brings us stories of bravery, wisdom and kindness. Just as we all need compassion, so are we all capable of providing it. We too can reach out, we too can take the time, we too can listen.

    Kate Mosse is an international bestselling novelist, playwright and nonfiction author with sales of more than 8 million copies in 38 languages. Renowned for bringing unheard and under-heard histories to life, she is a champion of women’s creativity. She is the Founder Director of the Women’s Prize for Fiction, sits on the Executive Committee of Women of the World, and is a Visiting Professor of Contemporary Fiction and Creative Writing at the University of Chichester. Her latest book, An Extra Pair of Hands, was published in June 2021. She lives in West Sussex with her husband and mother-in-law.

    Dates & times

    Sat 30 Oct, 6.45pm UTC


    • Standard entry£10*
    • Concessions25%**

    * Excludes £3.50 booking fee.

    ** Limited availability. Read about concessions.

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    Purcell Room

    Open 90 minutes before an event until the end of the event. Closed at all other times.

    Our address is: Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX. The nearest tube and train stations within 5-7 minutes walk are Waterloo (Northern, Bakerloo, Jubilee and Waterloo & City lines) and Embankment (District & Circle lines). There are also lots of bus routes with stops 2-5 minutes from our venues. For more information on getting here by road, rail or river.

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    Tickets to all of our events and exhibitions can be booked online, by telephone or in person. Find out all you need to know about tickets, including collection, concessions, group bookings and more via the link below.

    Tickets & concessions faqs

    Get an overview of the seating layout of the Purcell Room by downloading our seating plan.

    Download seating plan

    Purcell Room is located in Queen Elizabeth Hall. For step-free access please use Royal Festival Hall JCB glass lift to Level 2 and enter via Riverside Terrace.

    Talk to a member of staff at the auditorium entrance if you have a disability that means you can’t queue, or you need extra time to take your seat. They can arrange priority entry for you as soon as the doors open.

    Download step-free access map

    More about Access & facilities 

    An accessible toilet is located in the foyer.

    A Changing Places toilet is located on Level 1 Royal Festival Hall next to the JCB Glass Lift, for the exclusive use of disabled people who need personal assistance to use the toilet.

    The facility includes a height-adjustable bench, tracking hoist system, a centrally-placed toilet, a height-adjustable basin and a shower. The key for this room is available from the Welcome Hub on Level 2, Royal Festival Hall. The facility is open daily 10am – 11pm.

    Our cloakroom opens around 60 minutes before the start of any show, and closes around 15 minutes after the performance ends. It’s at the bottom of the stairs next to the Ticket Desk.