Wednesday 26 February, 2020 – 7 pm

Heroes and Villains in the Rise and Fall of the City of Money – £5

Why did Sir Walter Scott go from hero to villain and back to hero again? Find out at Edinburgh Bookshop, Bruntsfield. The ticket price includes £5 discount on the price of my book, Rise and Fall of the City of Money.

Make sure you book your seat!  Call the Bookshop on 0131 447 1917 or RSVP online HERE

Wednesday 5 February, 2020 – 8 pm

When the City Went Bust, from 300 Years of Edinburgh Finance

In Toppings bookshop at the corner of London Road and Leith Walk – formerly the Blenheim Place branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Note: the event has sold out. Please contact Toppings Edinburgh to be put on the waiting list: (0131) 546 4202

Wednesday 20 November, 2019 – 6.30 pm

Heroes and Villains from 300 years of Edinburgh finance – Free

An Edinburgh Reads event at George Washington Browne Room, Edinburgh Central Library, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EG

Event is free but book HERE

Sunday 24 November, 2019 – 2-3pm

How the French Revolution nearly led to the collapse of Royal Bank of Scotland

Previously History Festival, French Institute of Scotland, W Parliament Square, Edinburgh EH1 1R

Tickets: £5 at History Festival

Tuesday 3 December, 2019 – 7.30pm

The financial ruin of Walter Scott and how he got out of it

Bute Museum, Stuart Street, Rothesay, Isle of Bute

Details from Bute Museum

Monday 2 December, 2019 – 18.30-19.30

The day the bankers went to prison


What can we learn from history? Ray Perman draws on his new book The Rise and Fall of the City of Money for this event in the EICC Live programme.

A few months after posting record results a major Scottish bank goes bust, impoverishing many of its shareholders and depressing the whole economy. Is this 2008? No it is 130 years earlier – and despite the similarities with the 21st century credit crunch, there are differences. One is the speed with which the authorities acted: in 1878 the whole board of directors was arrested, put on trial and sent to prison. Over ten years since the collapse of RBS and HBOS we are still waiting for the official report into the conduct of the directors. 

Register HERE for free

Sunday 29 September, 2019 – 16:30 

The Rise and Fall of the City of Money

Wigtown Book Festival

Ray Perman’s panoramic account of Edinburgh’s life as a financial capital is bookended by disasters – the ill-fated Darien adventure that led to Scotland’s Union with England and the 2008 collapse of the city’s two largest banks.  He considers the visionaries, speculators and spivs who made it happen, while focusing on particular stories, including the financial ruin of Sir Walter Scott – and how he got out of it. [S] [223]

StageTEXT will be providing live surtitles for people with hearing loss at this event

Sponsored by Coburg Capital

Monday 18 October 2014 – 19:00 – 20:00

The role of financial journalism in accountability

University of Edinburgh Business School

Ray Perman talks to Chris Carter about financial journalism and outlines the role it can play in making organisations more accountable.



University of Edinburgh Business School
29 Buccleuch Place

Thursday 15 August 2013 14.00 – 15:oo

Edinburgh International Book Festival 

Crisis at Scotland’s Biggest Banks

Journalists Ray Perman and Ian Fraser discuss how  senior managements of HBOS and the Royal Bank of Scotland brought their banks to the brink of collapse and went unpunished.

Tuesday 9th October 2012 – 18:00

National Library of Scotland

(George lV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EW)

“Britain’s oldest commercial bank had survived more than 300 years…until it entered the disastrous merger with Halifax”. A talk by Ray Perman.


Sunday 4th November 2012  – 17:00

Lennoxlove Book Festival

(Hamilton Marquee, Lennoxlove House, Haddington, East Lothian,  EH41 4NW)

Ray Perman and Alistair Darling will discuss HUBRIS: How HBOS Wrecked the Best Bank in Britain.

Ray’s new book (with a foreword by Alistair) is the story of a stunning fall from grace. In 1995 the Bank of Scotland celebrated 300 years as Britain’s oldest commercial bank. Less than 15 years later it was bust. A former Financial Times journalist, Ray has traced this spectacular fall and, as Chancellor, Alistair was directly involved in the dramatic events of 2008 when the world’s economy tottered. In his Back from the Brink of 2011, Alistair has recorded this remarkable period in history whose effects will endure for generations.

Register HERE

1 Comment

  1. Dear Ray,
    I currently have a geology themed exhibition, Deep Time: Uncovering our Hidden Past, and if you are in London please visit. One of the works, The Torus of Time, charts the 3-billion-year history of the UK formed with rocks from every geological period: a leading geologist remarked that its circular form echoes the revolutionary theories of James Hutton, the subject of your book, in relation to the circular processes of the earth. Perhaps the Torus could be a symbol of Hutton if 2026 is declared a year to celebrate the Enlightenment? Below a link to the catalogue and a leaflet of the stone composition.

    I have today ordered your biography on Hutton and much look forward to reading it,
    all best wishes,
    Angela Palmer

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