Social Events

John Gower

MS Hunter 59 T-2-17 Portrait of Gower folio 6v John Gower Vox Clamantis Glasgow Univ Library

Info for Participants Registration Venue Organising Committee & Funding

We are having four main social events: the Congress Dinner, two half-day excursions and a night tour of the city.

Congress dinner

The Congress Dinner will take place at the “Restaurante Patio” []. This restaurant is adjacent to the Patio Herreriano, a sixteenth-century monastery recently renovated in order to house the Museum of Spanish Contemporary Art. The dinner will start with a reception in the front garden of the museum.
Very conveniently located downtown, it is within a five-minute walking distance from the Plaza Mayor. Map

(Please note any dietary restrictions or preferences on the first part of the registration form)

Half-day excursions

We are visiting two villages near Valladolid, Peñafiel (Tuesday 19th, when we’ll visit the castle and the wine museum) and Urueña (Thursday 21st, when we’ll visit the book museum e-LEA and will have a guided tour of the town).

Note: If accompanying persons want to join us ONLY for the outings, they do not need to register -- this can be paid for during the Congress.

  • Peñafiel (Tuesday 19th) - 20 € (incl. visit to the castle, the museum and the winery)
  • Urueña (Thursday 21st) - 5 € (incl. guided tour and visit to museum).


Though the first settlers in Peñafiel probably belonged to prehistoric cultures, it will be during the Spanish Reconquest period that the town flourished as one of the main bastions against the Arabs. In the thirteenth century the important writer (El Conde Lucanor) and politician Don Juan Manuel, nephew of King Alfonso X, would choose Peñafiel as his preferred dwelling house. But its connection with art had started a couple of centuries before, when several important civil and religious buildings were built, including more than a dozen churches and convents.
One of the landmarks of Peñafiel is its castle, which was a key defensive location along river Duero, both for Christians and Muslims in the 9th and 10th centuries. The castle is notorious for its narrowness. Even though small, in this castle there was a fierce battle in which thousands of people died. Its shape resembles a ship because the mountain on which it was built is very narrow. All the walls are very thick and tall. This castle was designed to be "unconquerable" and, according to many historians the gatehouse is probably the best one in Spain.
This castle is now the Provincial Wine Museum. The reason for this is that the town is at the heart of the Wine Region of the Ribera del Duero, and wine has been an essential part of Peñafiel’s culture since time immemorial. In these lands, it’s virtually impossible to stumble upon someone who doesn’t know about vines, vineyards, wine processes, wineries, wine cellars and wine, as expected of the largest population centre in Valladolid’s Ribera del Duero. Peñafiel offers visitors a wide range of wine-based tourist options.


UrueñaUrueña is a medieval town surrounded by a wall, a castle and beautiful churches like La Asunción and La Anunciada. In Urueña we will find the first "Villa del Libro" (Book Village) in Spain. In the streets of this town you will find 12 bookshops selling old or out-of-print books, or where interesting activities take place:

El Rincón Escrito, Alejandría Bookshop, "Wine Museum" Cellar Bookshop (specialising in science and fiction literature about wine), Alcuino Caligrafía (organises courses on calligraphy of other cultures, for all levels), El 7 Bookshop (specialising in the world of bullfighting), Samuel Bookshop, Alvacal, Boutique del Cuento, Almadí Bookshop, La Punta del Iceberg, Alcaraván Bookshop and the Artisan Book Binding Workshop of Urueña.

UrueñaAnother interesting place to visit is its original e-LEA Centre (a space for reading, writing and their applications). A 1,200 square-metre space with a specialised library, workshops, a garden, an exhibition hall, an assembly room… And you cannot miss the permanent exhibition "Between the lines. A history of books". []

On many occasions, this special village presents books, holds public readings,Urueña and organises calligraphy, illustration and book binding courses. And on special dates such as the World Book Day (23 April) or on the village's anniversary in March, this place holds a real celebration with conferences, round tables, storytelling, origami workshops, extraordinary concerts, dinners... It is a funny way to enjoy reading, a great opportunity to find a copy of that book you have always looked for, or for having a good day out.

UrueñaUrueña is also the seat of the Fundación Joaquín Díaz, a cultural foundation whose purpose is to contribute to acknowledge the value of the traditional cultural heritage. The folklorist Joaquín Díaz started to put together these collections which include a wide range of prints, "pliegos de cordel", recordings, illustrations, photographs and instruments. They are currently displayed in an eighteenth-century mansion in Urueña, the Ethnographic Museum.  The Fundación holds now specialized collections, the Museum of Musical Instruments, the Bells Museum and the Gramophone Museum []

Night tour of the city

The town hall tourist office will take us to a guided tour of the city in the evening of Monday 18th.

For further information about Valladolid and its touristic attractions, have a look at the Tourist office website []


"I throw my darts and shoot my arrows at the world. But where there is a righteous man, no arrow strikes. But I wound those who live wickedly. Therefore let him who recognizes himself there look to himself."
Vox Clamantis

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