Lots of great events are taking place in 2019 to celebrate the life and work of James Watt – in the UK and beyond. Click through the links below for more information.
Please note that some listings are hosted on external websites. Click the back button on your browser to return to this website.
Also note that plans can change, so confirm details with venues/organisers nearer the times of individual events.
More diary dates will be added to this page in due course – so continue to check back during 2019, and follow us for updates on Twitter @Watt2019
- You can also check our partners in Birmingham on the James Watt 2019 site.
- The University of Glasgow has also set up a dedicated events page for its Watt events.
- Saturday, January 5: 250th anniversary of Watt’s patent (to use a separate condenser to improve the steam engine).
- Monday, January 7 until August 29: Watt An Inspiration exhibition, Museum, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh
- Friday, January 18: James Watt Supper, Bo’ness
- Friday, January 18: Launch events in Greenock
- Saturday, January 19: Watt birthday / University of Glasgow announces Watt celebrations
- Mini exhibition on James Watt and his local links, Bo’ness Library
- From February 4: “When Art Tells a Tale” – creative arts project in Inverclyde
- Tuesday, February 5: The Lunar Society’s welcome to a Scottish inventor, Birmingham and Midland Institute, Birmingham
- Thursdays – on February 14, 21, and 28: Footprints in Time talks, The Helix Visitor Centre, Falkirk/Grangemouth
- Tuesday, February 19: Women of excellent understanding: The wives and daughters of the eighteenth century Lunar Society, Soho House, Birmingham
- Wednesday, February 20: In the footsteps of James Watt Jnr: a journey to Kennetpans distillery in Scotland, Quinborne Community Centre, Quinton
- Wednesday, February 20: Smethwick Engine Steaming Day, Thinktank, Birmingham
- Saturday, February 23: The Boulton & Watt Bloomfield engine, Glebefields Library, Tipton, West Midlands.
- End of February: Storytelling in Inverclyde Council libraries to celebrate James Watt
- Friday, March 1: University of Glasgow Alumni Reception, Singapore
- Saturday, March 9: An introduction To The Papers of James Watt and Family, Library of Birmingham
- Wednesday, March 13: Unveiling of James Watt Plaque,
- Saturday, April 13: James Watt – Powering Canals and Industry, Library of Birmingham
- Wednesday, April 17: Smethwick Engine Steaming Day, Thinktank, Birmingham
- Exhibition on Watt at Engine Shed, Stirling (running until Sept.) Details TBC.
- Friday, April 28: Family Day: Innovative Inventors! Verdant Works Museum, Dundee
- James Watt, the Exhibition, University of Glasgow Library. Details TBC
- Tuesday, May 7: Publication of new book – “The Life and Legend of James Watt”
- Thursday, May 16: The Thing Is (talk), Verdant Works Museum, Dundee
- Friday, May 17: Illuminating James Watt, Soho House, Birmingham
- Saturday, May 18: The Men, Women and Children of Soho, The Library of Birmingham
- Tuesday, May 21: Conservation Studio Tour, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
- Monday, May 27: Soho Steam Fair, Soho House Museum, Birmingham
- Wednesday, May 29: Smethwick Engine Steaming Day, Thinktank, Birmingham
- Thursday, May 30: Walking in the Footsteps of Watt – Geology of the Lickey Hills,
- Friday, May 31: Watt A Celebration, Trades Hall, Glasgow
- Wednesday, June 5: James Watt Symposium, Kelvin Gallery, University of Glasgow
- Wednesday, June 5: Royal Academy of Engineering and Royal Society of Engineering Annual James Watt Public Lecture: Inspiration and Innovation: the role of Grand Challenges, Sir Charles Wilson Lecture Theatre, University of Glasgow
- Thursday, June 6: James Watt Gala Dinner, Bute Hall and the Hunterian Museum, University of Glasgow
- Thursday, June 6 to Sunday, June 16: Glasgow Science Festival: Glasgow Steams Ahead
- Wednesday, June 12: Commemoration Day, Bute Hall and the Hunter Halls, University of Glasgow
- Thursday, June 13: Undergraduate Open Day, University of Glasgow
More events will be added here soon.
- August: Re-opening of the Watt Institution: the complex including the McLean Museum and Art Gallery and Watt Library in Greenock. Details TBC.
- Friday, August 23. Details TBC. Carnegie on Watt, Bo’ness Library
- Sunday, August 25: The 200th anniversary of Watt’s death.
- Sunday, August 25: Go Industrial Day 2019. Events to celebrate Watt at 12 museum sites across Scotland.
- Friday, August 30 (until Sept 1): Rethinking James Watt (1736-1819) – Innovation, Culture and Legacy, Conference at the University of Birmingham. Details TBC.
- Friday, October 4: James Watt Dinner, Raddison Blu Hotel, Glasgow.
- Watt at Kinneil House, Bo’ness. Details TBC
More events will be added here soon.