Category Archives: Hydra Event

Some of the events at The Hydra are put on by the volunteers who help run the bookshop. This section Is set up to promote those events, the biggest of which is our monthly (last Saturday of each month acoustic night.

Study Circle

No expertise required,

Hydra Books is hosting a study circle for anyone interested

in getting to know Karl Marx’s by reading his original works on capitalism.

Marx devote his life to writing about this most contemporary of topics,

and the study circle will be a peaceful, non judgmental to look into his work and

relate it to the world today.

Please bring a donation, and a copy of the first part of Capital if you have one.

This is a weekly event starting in October 2013.

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Email Encryption Workshop

Email Encryption for Beginners (re-scheduled)

Saturday 29th June 5:00pm

The first of a monthly (last Saturday of each month) computer workshop aiming to provide jargon-free workshops on useful programs.


No experience necessary, but if you have a laptop and USB stick please bring these with you.


A non-encrypted e-mail message sent through the Internet is like a postcard without an envelope: postpeople, neighbours and anybody else who can put their hands on it will easily read the message you’ve written. Unlike a postcard an email is copied (rather than moved) to many different computers on its travels. All of these computers’ owners we can’t possibly trust and know. This makes me feel uncomfortable and is not necessary with simple email encryption.


Certain organizations (e.g. journalists, unions, activists, etc) have a responsibility  to transmit sensitive messages securely and currently do not always do this. Don’t think what does this one email say about me? (or its recipient) think rather when examined on mass over time (most emails are stored indefinitely these days) what does this reveal about the way we live? This was pointed out by Ed Snowden, NSA Whistleblower, (click to hear him in his own words),that everyone needs to worried about security as at a future point with a database of this size anyone’s communications could be misconstrued by a goverment or corpration many years after an idle comment online is made.


When you use a website (like Facebook, Gmail)  to send a message you have little to no control at all over the delivery process, it’s like asking someone you’ve not met to go and read your postcard loudly near the front door of your mate’s house!


Still not convinced? See this brilliant summary.(on


The workshop will begin with a short (5 minutes) explanation on why email encryption ought to be common place, followed by instruction on the use of enigmail add-on for Thunderbird that makes using GPG (the encryption program) easy.


The aim is to by the end of the workshop be able to email anyone else who makes it to the workshop without the email being interceptable by a third party.


It would save time if you had Thunderbird setup and receiving your emails. If you have ubuntu or another linux, please run “sudo apt-get install gpg thunderbird ” in the terminal. If you already use email encryption and want to help or share your key please come by too.


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Volunteer Open Day.

March 17th

2pm onwards.

Calling all students, comrades, friends and strangers.Hydra Books are looking for volunteers to help operate our community run bookshop, coffee shop and meeting/event space on Old Market in central Bristol. Run by local people as a volunteer workers co-operative, Hydra Books can provide a platform for individuals to expand their skills and horizons, as well as their social scene for people new to the city (such as students).

Along with providing a productive way to spend your spare time, volunteering at Hydra Books would provide you with key skills and experiences which would all look impressive on a CV or resume, such as;

. Experience in customer service
. Using a coffee machine
. Book-keeping
. Till work

As well as more sought-after skills, (depending of how much you would like to get involved) such as;

. Events management.
. Barista style coffee art.
. Sound-engineering (for music nights)
. Experience in marketing and advertisement.
. Graphic design

Volunteers can look forward to meeting friendly, interesting people, learning more about alternative politics, and perhaps even finding an unknown flair or passion for barista service or bookkeeping. At the very least, those who volunteer regularly can expect good references from Hydra when looking for future employment, and the gratifying sense being part of a wider community.


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Acoustic Night @ Hydra Books Freedom Press Fundraiser. 23rd of Feb.

All proceeds from this event will go towards Freedom Press to help pay for the damages suffered in a recent firebombing. More news here.

Rita Lynch
Rita Lynch is a singer songwriter who achieved a major profile in the UK in the early 1990s, her sound has been described as PJ Harvey meets At The Drive-In with a dose of the usual dark ambience that accompanies most Bristol releases. She retains a devoted following today and continues to record and perform. Her live performances currently feature a two-piece line-up with John Langley ( Blue Aeroplanes, Witness, The Mekons, Strangelove, Saturation Point) on drums. She is also known as backing singer and guitarist with cult Bristol band, The Blue Aeroplanes.

Damon T
New York City born singer-songwriter influenced by Blues & Americana roots music. His original music has a bluesy, cinematic style with a percussion form of guitar playing accompanied by soulful vocals, whilst performing a unique blend of popular covers. Now living in the UK, recording and performing gigs around Gloucestershire.

Ghost Trail
Ghost Trail are an acoustic duo, playing a wide range of covers from Adele, Elton John and Fleetwood Mac – right through to Led Zeppelin and Iron Maiden. All have been adapted to their individual acoustic style and we just know you’ll love them!!

This event will be hosted by our very own coffee boy and “Musician” Michael McNeil.
As always, there will be open mic after the booked acts, so bring your Stylophone with you if you want to rock the joint and raise some money.

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Filed under Events, Hydra Event, Music Night

Acoustic Night.

Saturday 26th of January.
Join us for our first music night of 2013! with some upcoming and sublime local talent.

Ryan Inglis
Ryan Inglis’ music is an acoustic guitar base, matured for over 10 years infused with gospel inspired rhythm, melodic bass-lines. Garnished with haunting strings & grade A lead guitar hooks and seasoned with chopped dance/trance samples. Connoisseurs will appreciate the thoughtful lyrics and the vocal tone (a particular delicacy) Low in fat, Ryan Inglis is also suitable for vegetarians and with a calorie count of 0 you can listen to as much as you like guilt free.

Rhiane Hacker
“I’d say I really began songwriting in february 2012, I had written a few songs beforehand but they were never really that great. Music has always meant a lot to me. It’s cliche but it’s there for me when the world isn’t. I think that music has the power to show the deepest secrets. You’ll understand this if you concentrate on some people’s lyrics. Not only that but you often can relate exactly to the words they sing. This is why I try to do with my own songs. They’re all personal, so the feeling in them is really strong. I want people to be able to relate and connect with the song, Lastly I want them to enjoy it, so it’s a treat for their ears.”

No Prima Donnas
QJB and The Ant mix original material penned by Q over the course of his career with carefully picked covers from the cheesy and humorous to the alternative and melancholy. The pair have played together for over 7 years in various guises and bands (inc.No Prima Donnas, Running With Scissors, ShellShoqued, and The Bonshells) at venues across Bristol, Somerset and Gloucestershire and as far afield as Bradford (and it was a field). Always delivered with a sense of humour and a desire to entertain, delight and baffle in equal measure in the original spirit of No Prima Donnas.

This event will be hosted by our very own coffee boy and “Musician” Michael McNeil. There will also be open mic after the booked acts, so bring your friends and your guitar (or whichever instrument is your favourite. We don’t discriminate).

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Filed under Events, Hydra Event, Music Night