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24-06-17

Hello,

At the end of a week which saw power-cuts around the bay bring our education programme to a (temporary) grinding halt, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday we were all looking forward to hearing our good friend and group member, Jim Ring present an interesting lecture on the economic theories of Greek economist, academic and politician Yanis Varoufakis. However, the agenda was thrown into chaos when a wide scale (60,000 homes) power cut struck the whole of Morecambe Bay, taking out all electricity but for the emergency background safety lighting around the University. This began whilst the Steering Group were meeting, around 11:15, and continued for a couple of hours. Sadly, Jim’s lecture was unable to go ahead at that point.

As an alternative, we took to Fylde Coffee bar and, thanks to Chris who was a week early with her Jacob’s Join preparations, we were able to gather around a large table for a good chat, eat cake and drink lemonade. Thanks Chris, how very fortuitous!




This Week…

Now, this coming Wednesday (28th June 2017) is our least session of this term, and indeed this academic year. We have rescheduled Jim’s lecture for this week, so all is not lost. Here is a little reminder from last week’s CLG News…

‘Examining 'The Global Minotaur' by Yanis Varoufakis'

‘As you know, Jim has been a member of the Continuing Learning Group for many years now attending Lunchtime Lectures regularly and providing valuable contributions to the Research & Discussion Forum. Jim was educated at the London School of Economics and lives in Kendal. He has had a long standing involvement in local and national politics, and is an active political campaigner. We are very pleased to welcome him in his capacity as an educator. In this session, Jim will examine the contents of Yanis Varoufarkis' recent book ‘The Global Minotaur’.

'In this remarkable and provocative book, Yanis Varoufakis explodes the myth that financialisation, ineffectual regulation of banks, greed and globalisation were the root causes of the global economic crisis. Rather, they are symptoms of a much deeper malaise which can be traced all the way back to the Great Crash of 1929, then on through to the 1970s: the time when a 'Global Minotaur' was born. Just as the Athenians maintained a steady flow of tributes to the Cretan beast, so the 'rest of the world' began sending incredible amounts of capital to America and Wall Street. Thus, the Global Minotaur became the 'engine' that pulled the world economy from the early 1980s to 2008.

Today's crisis in Europe, the heated debates about austerity versus further fiscal stimuli in the US, the clash between China's authorities and the Obama administration on exchange rates are the inevitable symptoms of the weakening Minotaur; of a global 'system' which is now as unsustainable as it is imbalanced. ‘

(taken from https://www.yanisvaroufakis.eu)


We also plan to have our Annual General Meeting, where we can look back at the events of the year and organise ourselves for the coming academic year (2017-2018). Please bring food and drink to share and enjoy the chance to chat with fellow group members.

Events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.




Other news…

Here is some information about a ‘Centre for Ageing Research’ event which is taking place during the summer break

'Town and Gown' Event on Dementia and the Imagination: Arts and Design for Health
7th September 2017 - Banqueting Room, Lancaster Town Hall (9:30am - 4:30pm)

With the numbers of people with dementia rising and the costs of care spiraling, dementia remains a challenge that the UK cannot overlook. Tackling dementia is now a priority for the NHS. This includes helping people and their carers live well with dementia after diagnosis. Dementia can have a devastating effect on people’s cognitive abilities and with no ‘cure’ on the immediate horizon, there is a real need to think more innovatively about how we can best support individuals and families currently living with dementia in ways that will actively enhance their sense of self and identity and contribute to an improved quality of life. Interestingly, the creative, imaginative and emotional parts of a person often remain relatively strong. Arts and design may thus have an important role to play here – one that is often overlooked in the race for more effective clinical and biomedical interventions.

This year’s Town and Gown event run by Lancaster University Centre for Ageing Research is designed to bring to you some of the most cutting edge research and practice that draws on knowledge and expertise from the worlds of arts and design. From music and theatre to participatory art and design, this event showcases the work of researchers from the university together with that of their collaborators from the health, the voluntary and community sector and academia.
The event will consist of a mix of talks from invited guest speakers who are experts in this field and who will draw on some of their latest research to talk about these issues. These talks will be interspersed with short 10 minute presentations from a range of researchers from Lancaster in order to showcase their work around dementia, the arts and design as well as short films, exhibitions, posters and other interactive events.

Though the event will be of interest to other academics, the event is primarily aimed at members of the public, practitioners from health and social care, and the worlds of arts and design.

Attendance at this one day event is free but places are limited, so you MUST register for a place at this event.

To reserve your place to attend please e-mail Jan Lyons at: c4ar@lancaster.ac.uk
Alternatively you can telephone Jan on: 01524 593309




Regarding George…

As you know, it was our dear friend and fellow CLG member, George’s funeral last Tuesday. Janet Ross-Mills, Gill Robinson and myself attended. The afternoon started with an intimate ceremony of reminiscence and silent reflection, the preferred Quaker way of remembering a departed friend. This took place at the new Crematorium at Beetham, just up the road from Lancaster. Family and friends attended, including George’s three sons who live in Australia, New Zealand and the UK.
Following the cremation ceremony, friends and family then travelled on to the beautiful Brigflatts Early Quaker Meeting House, near Sedbergh in Cumbria, a place where George spent a lot of time. Another session of reminiscence and silence took place in the meeting house, with those attendees who felt moved to speak taking turns to share their thoughts and feelings with those present. There were also periods of silence to reflect. We were all able to learn more about George, and had the chance to thank him for his valued friendship and companionship. Janet kindly spoke on behalf of the CLG and Fiona (our programme founder).
Tea, coffee, biscuits and cake were served in the attractive cottage-style garden outside the meeting house, and the sun shone brightly in George’s honour. All in all it was a lovely day, and I know George would have been extremely delighted with the events.
And finally…
So, we have made it to the end of the term… and the academic year. It has been a wonderful year, full of great learning opportunities. We have said goodbye to a friend (George Henson) and welcomed another (Benjamin Simon Daly). We begin our brand new term on October 11th 2017. We currently have a fine range of lectures in the pipeline covering such diverse areas as the Aurora Borealis and The Human Genome Project. We hope you will join us for the journey.
With best wishes,
Dave and the whole Steering Group


17-06-17

At the end of a week where many questions have been asked around the current laws concerning habitation standards of rented accommodation following a tragic inferno in a London tower block, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday we were visited by Stephen Wildman, director of the Ruskin Library and Research Centre. Stephen is about to retire from his post, so we asked him if he would visit us one last time in his current position to speak with us about his time working with the Ruskin Centre and, in particular, his long standing relationship with Ruskin's work. This was a very interesting talk indeed. We heard about the different phases of Stephen’s life, including his time at Cambridge University and his interest in the art of the Pre-Raphaelites, which preceded his interest in the (artistic and theoretical) work of John Ruskin. It was great to see how Stephen’s interest in Ruskin’s life and work grew steadily over time. We were able to appreciate how Stephen, through a thorough knowledge of his subject, has developed a fully rounded understanding of the driving forces in Ruskin’s life, his visual, artistic output and its relationship to his theories, which ranged from the personal to the political, with particular concern with the aesthetic. We would like to thank Stephen for his valuable support and we look forward to working with him again in the future.


If you would like to more about the life and work of John Ruskin, you can visit the website (link below), or better still why not visit the Centre itself? The current exhibition, 'Coming of Age': Ruskin’s Drawings from the 1840-41 Tour, runs from 24 April – 1 September 2017.

http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/users/ruskinlib/Pages/1840.html




This week…

This coming week (21st June 2017) Jim Ring, CLG Group Member.
'Examining 'The Global Minotaur' by Yanis Varoufakis'

You will all know Jim as he has been a member of the Continuing Learning Group for many years now attending Lunchtime Lectures regularly and providing valuable contributions to the Research & Discussion Forum. Jim was educated at the London School of Economics and lives in Kendal. He has had a long standing involvement in local and national politics, and is an active political campaigner. We are very pleased to welcome him in his capacity as an educator. In this session, Jim will examine the contents of Yanis Varoufarkis' recent book ‘The Global Minotaur’.

'In this remarkable and provocative book, Yanis Varoufakis explodes the myth that financialisation, ineffectual regulation of banks, greed and globalisation were the root causes of the global economic crisis. Rather, they are symptoms of a much deeper malaise which can be traced all the way back to the Great Crash of 1929, then on through to the 1970s: the time when a 'Global Minotaur' was born. Just as the Athenians maintained a steady flow of tributes to the Cretan beast, so the 'rest of the world' began sending incredible amounts of capital to America and Wall Street. Thus, the Global Minotaur became the 'engine' that pulled the world economy from the early 1980s to 2008.

Today's crisis in Europe, the heated debates about austerity versus further fiscal stimuli in the US, the clash between China's authorities and the Obama administration on exchange rates are the inevitable symptoms of the weakening Minotaur; of a global 'system' which is now as unsustainable as it is imbalanced. ‘

(taken from https://www.yanisvaroufakis.eu)

Jim’s Lunchtime Lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. This part of the afternoon will give all group members the chance to examine the ideas proposed by Varoufakis and put forward by Jim.

Events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.
We look forward to your company.




And finally…

The Cremation of our good friend George Henson will take place at Beetham Hall Crematorium at 3.30 pm on Tuesday 20th June followed by a Quaker Meeting to celebrate George’s life at Brigflatts Quaker Meeting House, Sedbergh at 5.00 pm

For those not familiar with Quaker affairs it may be helpful to understand that in the ceremony people sit in silence, but in due course people can make a spoken address about George if they wish.

Tea, coffee and light refreshments will be provided at Brigflatts. The funeral director is J. J. Martin 015396 25334

Directions to Brigflatts: From junction 37 on the M6 turn right for Sedbergh A684. On the outskirts of Sedbergh just before the first garage, turn right A683 (signed to Kirkby Lonsdale) and Brigflatts is approx 250 yards. Park on the right and walk down the short road opposite to the Meeting House.





10-06-17

At the end of a truly fascinating election week, where both main parties celebrated like winners and the political landscape changed drastically, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr Amin-Al-Astewani, Lecturer in Law at Lancaster Law School presented his Lunchtime Lecture 'English Human Rights Law and the Use of Religious Symbols'.

Amin reflected upon the significance of four important cases that have arisen over the last decade in the English courts which relate to the use of religious symbols:

R v Denbigh High School (2006) in which the English courts considered a Muslim pupil’s right to wear Islamic dress at school.

R v Governing Body of Millais School (2007) in which the English courts considered a Christian pupil’s right to wear a purity ring at school.

R v Governing Body of Aberdare Girl’s High School (2008) in which the English courts considered a Sikh pupil’s right to wear a Kara bangle at school.

Eweida v British Airways plc (2010) in which English (and eventually European) courts considered a Christian employee’s right to wear a cross at work.

Amin presented these example cases in the context of relevant human rights and equality legislations, which, in turn, clarified for the group the subtle nuances of law which come into play in such cases. This was a very interesting lecture which explained how seemingly similar cases can have quite different outcomes in practice.

We then followed on from the lecture with a good Research & Discussion Forum, where Amin took part, answering further questions on the fine points of this fascinating area of law.

I will be posting the audio recording of the lecture part of the afternoon online soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…

This coming Wednesday (14th June 2017) Professor Stephen Wildman, Director of the Ruskin Library and Research Centre at Lancaster University will present us with a talk, 'Ruskin & I'.


Many of you will now know Stephen from previous lectures he has given to the group and also from his guided tours of exhibitions at the Ruskin Library. Stephen is about to retire from his post, so we asked him if he would visit us one last time in his current position to speak with us about his time working with the Ruskin Centre and his long standing relationship with Ruskin's work.

We are very grateful for the support Stephen has given us over the last ten, or so, years and wish him well as he embarks on the next exciting phase of his life.

Stephen’s talk will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will have plenty of chance to discuss issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.



And finally…

It is with great sadness I must report the death of our dear friend, George Henson, who died on Monday 5th June 2017.

George was a founder member of the Continuing Learning Group and previously took part in the Senior Learners Programme run by the Department of Continuing Education at Lancaster University.

As you may know, George served as a pilot during WW2 and flew Mosquito planes in Burma. Thanks to George’s skills, a design fault in the planes was discovered and the lives of many of his fellow pilots saved. He had a career as an engineer after the war, and enjoyed sailing off the North West coast with his wife and 3 sons for many years.

In later years George shared his interests in Quakerism and sailing with his friend Anne Kilshaw and they both spent the Saturday before he died at Glasson Dock, working together on their boats.

George lived contentedly in Nazareth House for about 2 years following a fall, and regularly attended lectures, committee meetings and took part in recent research projects for the Department of Health Studies.

A fine man, with a wealth of knowledge and experience, George will be very much missed by all of us.

If you would like to hear an audio interview conducted a few years ago with George on the subject of 'Learning Methods' in which George told us a little about his life. You can do so here:
http://dai.ly/xwwgws



03-06-17

As we race at great speed towards the forthcoming United Kingdom general election, which takes place this coming Thursday 8th June, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday Dr Samuele Carcagno, Senior Research Associate with the Department of Psychology here at Lancaster University presented his two part Lunchtime Lecture on
'Wood Choice for Acoustic Guitars & Hearing and Ageing'.

Firstly, Samuele focused on a piece of research he has been involved with. The research study looked at the difference between various tropical hardwoods used for the back plates of acoustic guitars, highly prized by guitarists not only for their beauty but also for their purported sound qualities. These materials are not only expensive, but also endangered due to deforestation. In the study, experienced guitarists rated the sound qualities of six steel-string acoustic guitars with back plates made of different woods varying widely in monetary value, prestige, and sustainability. These were then compared and rated in terms of preference and also using audio spectrum technology so give a clear understanding of the performance of each material.

The second part of the lecture was given over to an exploration of hearing, how it works in practice, and how these functions become impaired with age. We were able to grasp the difference between natural ageing and hearing damage due to excessive loud noise. Samuele also discussed the issues which we need to tackle if we are to develop high quality hearing improvement surgery. Samuele is currently involved in a piece of hearing and ageing research. If you would like to get involved, or just find out more, you can contact Samuele here:

Hearing Lab at Lancaster University
Room D40,
Fylde College,
Lancaster,
LA1 4YF
Tel: 01524 594305
s.carcagno@lancaster.ac.uk

Or visit the website: www.psych.lancs.ac.uk/hearing


We followed the lecture with a vibrant Research & Discussion Forum where ideas and issues raised in the lecture where further discussed.

I will be posting an audio version of the lecture online here soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures






This week…

This coming Wednesday (7th June 2017) Dr Amin-Al-Astewani, Lecturer in Law at Lancaster Law School here at Lancaster University, will present his lecture 'The Law Around Religious Symbols'.

Dr Amin-Al-Astewani gained his International Baccalaureate at Manchester Grammar School before going on to gain his Bachelor's Degree in Law at the University of Manchester. His PhD in Law was also gained at the University of Manchester. He was Senior Editor at the University of Manchester Review of Law, Crime and Ethics, 2013-2014 and Research Officer at the Manchester Centre for Regulation and Governance from 2016. His general areas of research interest focus around religion and law and also public law. In this lecture he will explore the topical area of law around religious symbols which has become a talking point in recent years.

We will follow on from the lecture with the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will be able to chat about thoughts, ideas and issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture theatre 3 from 1pm.


Other news…

Whilst we are on the subject of research, I would like to remind you of some ongoing research which you might want to get involved with…

‘Healthy adult volunteers aged 55 and over are needed for a study of eye movement as an early indicator of impairment in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

Researchers at Lancaster University and the Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust are conducting a study to investigate eye movements as a possible way to help diagnose Alzheimer’s disease. We would like to record eye movements and performance on the cognitive tests to see if they might be useful in the future as an aid to diagnosis. To complete this study we will need to include a group of people who do not have Alzheimer’s disease as a comparison group. An infra-red eye-tracking camera will be used to record your eye movements while you are looking at the lights. You will also be asked to complete some tests of your memory and attention. This will involve a series of simple questions that will help to provide more information to help us identify whether the eye movements are related to other functions of the brain. You will not be paid or compensated for your participation. However, we will be able to contribute towards travel costs.’

If you would like to be considered as control participant please contact by telephone or email:

Dr. Trevor Crawford: 01524 593761 email: t.crawford@lancaster.ac.uk


Thanks, have a good week and don’t forget to vote!






27-05-17

At the end of a difficult week which saw Britain shaken to the core after a suicide bomber detonated a device at a concert in central Manchester killing 23 people and injuring 116, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Alisdair Gillespie of Lancaster Law School here at Lancaster University presented his Lunchtime Lecture on 'Cyber-Crime'.

After first defining the concept of cyber-crime, Professor Gillespie looked at a broad range of features from fraud and theft of funds with individuals and companies, through to child pornography, child grooming and child solicitation. We heard how increasingly, young people in today’s society do not differentiate between online and offline aspects of their lives. This way of experiencing the world is likely to become more engrained as we see the ‘Internet of Things’ (internet linked machines) expand to include more of our household appliances and daily objects.

We looked at data storage, how little awareness we have of it, and how our data is now stored in many places such as our own homes, storage facilities both nationally and internationally. We looked at the full extent of fake, though seemingly genuine, websites designed to draw us in and gain our details. We were made aware of just how careful we need to be online, and the benefits of using established pathways, we set up ourselves, to carry out our daily tasks.

We then went on to discuss a number of other interesting points in the Research & Discussion Forum which followed on from the lecture,

If you would like to hear the lecture, I will be posting it soon here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…


This coming Wednesday (31st May 2017) Dr Samuele Carcagno, Senior Research Associate with the Department of Psychology here at Lancaster University will present his Lunchtime Lecture
'Wood Choice for Acoustic Guitars & Hearing and Ageing'

Samuele will present his lecture in two parts…

Part 1:
The steel-string acoustic guitar is one of the most popular instruments in the world. Certain tropical hardwoods used for the back plates of acoustic guitars, such as Brazilian rosewood, are highly prized by guitarists not only for their beauty but also for their purported sound qualities. Unfortunately, the most prized species of woods used for the back plates of acoustic guitars are not only expensive, but also endangered due to deforestation. In this lecture Samuele will present the results of a study in which experienced guitarists rated the sound qualities of six steel-string acoustic guitars with back plates made of different woods varying widely in monetary value, prestige, and sustainability.

Part 2:
The ability to understand speech in noisy environments declines with increasing age, often leading to communication difficulties and a reduced quality of life. Hearing ability is usually measured in the clinic using “pure tone audiometry” which measures a patient’s ability to hear quiet tones of different frequencies. As we age, there is a reduction in sensitivity, particularly at high frequencies, due to damage to the sensitive “hair cells” in the ear that detect sounds. However, there is increasing evidence that hearing abilities can decline as age increases even in people without audiometric hearing loss and with intact cognitive abilities. This suggests that other factors, such as loss of auditory nerve fibres and/or loss of synchronous firing between nerve fibres may be at play. In this lecture Samuele will present the rationale and methodology of a large-scale study that he’s currently conducting to assess the role that these factors play in the decline of hearing abilities with ageing.

The lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will get the chance to discuss ideas and concepts raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.




Other news…


Lancaster and Morecambe U3A on behalf of North West Region of U3As are holding a one day conference on Thursday, 26th October 2017.

This ‘Health and Wellbeing Conference’ aims to enthuse, inform and empower participants to lead healthy lives.

The programme will run as follows:

10.00 a.m. - 10.30 a.m. Registration and tea/ coffee.

10.30 a.m. - 10.35 a.m. Welcome to the Conference
Gill Russell - North West Regional Trustee.

10.35 a.m. - 10.40 a.m. Local welcome and introduction to the day
Professor Gill Baynes – Research Ambassador and External Liaison -L&M U3A
Morning session– Chaired by Gill Russell - North West Regional U3A Trustee.

10.40 a.m. - 10.50 a.m. What is Health?
Dr. Alex McMinn, M.B.E. Former NW Trustee U3A and World Health Organisation Advisor.

10.50a.m. - 11.20 a.m. Reducing your Risk of Dementia: The Science Behind the Headlines
Dr. Penny Foulds, Honorary Researcher, Division of Biomedical and Life Sciences, Lancaster
University.

11.20 a.m. - 11.45a.m. Medical Screening to Maintain Health: The Role of Radiology
Professor Gill Baynes, former Chair in Medical Imaging Education, University of Cumbria

11.45 a.m. - 12.10p.m. The Role of Pathological Testing in Health
Alan Currie, Former Directorate Manager Pathology, UHMBT.

12.10 p.m. -12.35 p.m. Non drug treatments to intervene and prevent dementia
Dr Garuth Chalfont, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University.

12.35 p.m. -12.45 p.m. Cancercare and its role in promoting Health and Wellbeing
Neil Townsend, Chief Executive Officer, Cancercare.

12.45p.m. - 1.45p.m. Lunch – Ashton Hall.

Afternoon session – Chaired by Neil Stevenson –NW Regional Committee Chair.
1.45p.m. - 2.15 p.m. Keynote Lecture, Voluntary and Community Interventions to Support Active and Healthy Ageing. Professor Christine Milligan, Director for Centre of Ageing, Lancaster University.

2.15 p.m. - 2.40pm Eyetracking as an early indicator of Alzheimer’s disease
Dr.Thom Wilcockson, Department of Psychology, Lancaster University.

2.40 p.m. - 3.00p.m. The role of Exercise in Active Ageing.
Lindsey Wilcox, Retired Physiotherapist and committee member of the Morecambe Bay
Branch of National Osteoporosis Society.

3.00 p.m. - 3.20 p.m. The Security Challenges associated with Ageing
Dr. Lara Warmelink, Department of Psychology, Lancaster University.

3.20 p.m. - 3.30 p.m. How the services of Age UK positively impact on Health and Wellbeing
Anne Oliver, Community Engagement Manager, Age UK.

3.30p.m. - 3.50pm Open Forum : Gill Baynes, Alan Currie, Penny Foulds, Anne Oliver, Neil Townsend, Thom Wilcockson.

3.50p.m. -4.00 p.m. Closing remarks: NW Regional U3A Trustee - Gill Russell, Lancaster and Morecambe U3A, University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay Trust.


There will be Marketplace event all day:
Stalls include: Age UK, Alzheimer’s Society, Cancercare, Care Innovation, Continuing Learning Group, Defying Dementia, Dying Matters, Innovation Agency, MAC Clinical Research, National Osteoporosis Society.

Venue :
Ashton Hall
The Town Hall
Dalton Square
Lancaster
LA1 1PJ
01524 582583
Main access - George Street entrance of Town Hall
Disabled access - through main entrance to Town Hall, at the left hand side of the building if standing at the front.

For parking please see https://www.lancaster.gov.uk/parking/car-parks
For Disabled parking please see: https://www.lancaster.gov.uk/parking/disable-parking-bays-in-lancaster

Charitable donations appreciated to Cancercare.



Also…

We recently publicised Lancaster District CVS launch of Lancaster District Academy of Volunteering, which was due to take place on Thursday 1st June 2017, at The Cornerstone. Unfortunately, this event has been postponed for the time being. We don’t as yet know when it will take place, but we will keep you informed.



And finally…

I am very pleased to announce the arrival of Benjamin Simon Daly, to our fabulous Steering Group member Zsuzsanna, and her husband (and good friend of the CLG) Rory. Benjamin was born on Thursday 25th May, weighing 7lbs/3kg. We would like to congratulate them wholeheartedly, and we really look forward to meeting our newest, and youngest, CLG member in due course.
Congratulations Folks! Xxx






21-05-17

At the end of a week that saw around 3,000 lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and straight people march through Lancaster City to celebrate Gay Pride, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr. Jack Brettle, Honorary Fellow at Aberystwyth University presented us with a forward looking lecture entitled 'Tomorrow's World'.

Dr. Jack Brettle, whose background is as a materials scientist with a career which covered solid state physics, electrochemistry, surface science, biotechnology and nanotechnology, expertly explained to the group how the smartphone has brought testing and health monitoring to us all at a relatively low cost. We were shown add-on devices which can be used with standard high-street technology in order that we might better understand our health. We were also told how technological health-related data can be communicated to a central source, such as a doctor or specialist, automatically. We were able to see the advantages of such data transfer in terms of monitoring health conditions, but were also struck by the less positive outcomes that might ensue when such personal data is made available. Many of us are familiar with telecare systems for safety monitoring and triggering alarms when problems such as falls occur, however, we were able to see how advancing this technology could have huge implications for the population. Both good and bad.

After the lecture we continued the discussion around health, society, ethics and data management in the Research & Discussion Forum.

If you would like to hear the contents of Jack’s lecture, I will be posting it here soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…


This coming Wednesday (24th May 2017) Professor Alisdair Gillespie of Lancaster Law School here at Lancaster University, will present his Lunchtime Lecture 'Cyber-Crime'

Professor Gillespie’s main research interests relate to cyber-crime, particularly in respect of child sexual exploitation. Much of his work relates to child pornography, child grooming and child solicitation but also includes broader forms of cyber-crime. Professor Gillespie also has research interests in legal systems and evidence, particularly covert surveillance. Professor Gillespie has been called to act as an expert advisor to the UN, Council of Europe, EU and prosecutors & the judiciary from around the world. He has also advised the Home Office, Ministry of Justice and Sentencing Council.

Alisdair’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get the chance to further explore issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.



Other news…

Lancaster District CVS would like to invite you to the launch of Lancaster District Academy of Volunteering on Thursday 1st June 2017, at The Cornerstone. The event will be divided into two (identical) sessions (10:00 and 14:00, each for an hour and a half) looking at the concept of volunteering and its benefits. If you would like to attend, please confirm your attendance and preferred session by emailing Ruth: ruthcorrigan@lancastercvs.org.uk or call 01524 555900 no later than Wednesday 24th May 2017.

“Lancaster CVS developed our Academy to provide a central point where people can speak with an advisor, access information technology and find peer support by trained staff and volunteers, 5 days a week between 10:00 and 16:00. We want to provide local people multi agency support (access opportunities; training information; support; mentoring and a dedicated training program) because quite often the people we engage with face a multiple of barriers that prevent them from working or volunteering. Our project provides this vast range of services in an acquired dedicated space secured by Lancaster CVS that is inviting and inspirational for volunteers and volunteer-involving organisations. Our aim is to provide the support needed to build skills, knowledge and confidence so that people can go on to engage in volunteering as a way of improving their wellbeing and re-building their lives.”

This invitation coincides with National Volunteers’ Week, which runs from 1st to 7th June. Volunteers’ week provides an excellent opportunity to let volunteers know just how appreciated they are – contributing to the heart of all that CVS do, and to celebrate the positive difference they make on a day to day basis with organisations across the country. A further coincidence and cause for celebration is the 40th anniversary of Lancaster District CVS, and they would like to thank all for the continued support they receive.

I’m sure, as residents of Lancaster District, we would all like to thank them for their excellent contribution and wish them a very happy 40th anniversary.





14-05-17

At the end of a week which has seen 99 countries hit with a large scale ransomware cyber-attack, including the UK’s National Health Service, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, in conjunction with Lancaster University and the Centre for Ageing Research, the Continuing Learning Group hosted a Dying Matters Awareness Week event at St Paul’s Parish Hall, Scotforth, Lancaster.

Many middle aged and older people are changing their approach to death and dying by seizing the chance to take some control on how they might face end of life issues, making provisional plans, becoming informed on what is available in terms of medical treatment and direction of their finances etc. Where this was often regarded as a taboo area, with many people leaving much of the process to chance or to the whim of those left behind, some people are now beginning to embrace this part of their lives and take steps to have more of a say in their future.

Our event began (after the usual introductions) with a short but inspiring film made by ‘Conversations For Life’ (including some CLG/SLP members) entitled ‘Breaking the Silence’, which looked at death as the last taboo, and why we need to address it. This short film, open, compassionate and frank, highlights a number of important issues, such as the fact that we often take it for granted that our loved ones know what we want in terms of end of life care, though in reality we may never have discussed it with them, or made our wishes known. Personal experiences play a large part in the film and are discussed in a warm and sensitive way. We used this valuable film as a starting block, stimulating discussion for the event.

You can view the short film here:
https://youtu.be/07dx8EvRiL4

Following on from the film, Janet Ross-Mills explained a number of tools we have at our disposal when planning for the future including, Lasting Power of Attorney, Advance Decisions and Advance Statements. There was plenty of questions and discussion around these tools and how we might tailor them to our own needs and requirements.

After a tasty lunch, which was slightly delayed due to Lancaster’s usual traffic problems, the afternoon was given over to a number of speakers: Tony Bonser, Dying Matters Champion for the North West kicked off with introductions. Closely followed by Robert Caunce from Ascension and Cliff Funeral Directors who explained what a funeral director does. We also heard, from a colleague, how Robert has recently incorporated professional bereavement counselling into the service he provides, and how this is helping not only clients, but also staff working in the bereavement service.

Next, Olivia Egdell-Page of Joseph A. Jones and Co Solicitors spoke about how a solicitor can help deal with many aspects that arise when faced with a bereavement.

Then Gail Capstick, of the Transition Approaches to Death & Dying group of Transition City Lancaster and also a regular at our CLG lectures, spoke on how we might make funerals greener and more environmentally friendly.

Finally Tony Bonser brought the speakers to a conclusion and we moved on to the Death Café, where people were able to enjoy tea and cake whilst discussing thoughts and points raised through the day.


All in all the event was a great success, we have received very positive feedback and would like to thank all those who took part, helped with arrangements, gave their time on the day or attended to hear the talks. Thank you all very much.

I hope to post some of the content online in audio format over the coming weeks, so please keep checking here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/home

This week…

This coming Wednesday (17th May 2017) Dr Jack Brettle, Honorary Fellow at Aberystwyth University will present his Lunchtime Lecture 'Tomorrow's World'.

Dr Jack Brettle's background is as a materials scientist with a career which covered solid state physics, electrochemistry, surface science, biotechnology and nanotechnology. Since retirement he has developed a particular interest in the ways in which rapid technological developments will impinge on the world of tomorrow. The talk will focus on the impact of information technology and genetics on future health care.

Jack’s talk will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where group members will have a chance to explore further the themes of the talk.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

Have a good week and we hope you can join us for the lecture and the discussion.


06-05-17

At the end of a week which saw many people around the country go to the polling booths to vote in local elections, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday we had a visit from Gary Rycroft, solicitor with Joseph A. Jones & Co. Solicitors and he enlightened us as to how we might disinherit our children.

In his interesting lecture, Gary took us through a number of considerations when determining our financial legacy after death. We were introduced to aspects of the law which come into play when executing a will, how we might go about including others or, alternatively, excluding them.

Gary used a number of case studies to demonstrate how the law has approached certain wills and testaments in the past and how disputes, which are quite common, have been tackled in an attempt to bring justice to all parties concerned.

The lecture brought in a number of important aspects which we, as members of the public, were not necessarily clear on, regarding automatic entitlement and the hierarchy of entitlement that currently exists, and how it has changed over time.

We then went on to have a vibrant Research & Discussion Forum, where we were able to discuss the issues raised in light of our own experience.

If you would like to hear the audio recording of this session, you can do so on our main website, here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…

This coming Wednesday 10th May 2017, to mark National Dying Matters Awareness Week and In conjunction with Lancaster University and the Centre for Ageing Research, the Continuing Learning Group is hosting a special event…

“Why do I need to make a will? Can I have a "green funeral"? What do I say to someone who has been bereaved? Do I need a Lasting Power of Attorney when I am not ill? What happens to my Facebook page after I die?... If you have any questions about anything to do with end of life, death, funerals and the rest, come along to a Dying Matters Awareness Day to find some answers, and maybe some more questions you haven't even thought of yet...

Dying Matters Awareness Event
Wednesday 10th May 2017
St Pauls Parish Hall,
Scotforth,
Lancaster.
LA1 4ST
10.30am until 3pm

Provisional Programme is as follows:

10:30am Welcome and Introduction.

10:45am Film - Conversation For Life.

11.00am Advance Planning using free tools with Janet Ross - formerly Age UK.
Including:
Lasting Power of Attorney,
Advance Decisions to Refuse Treatment,
Advance Statements.

12:00 Lunch- Bring your own or order bread and soup £4.50 (by May 3rd)

1:00pm Speakers:
Introductions – Tony Bonser – Dying Matters Champion for the North West.
What does a Funeral Director Do? - Robert Caunce from Cliff Small Funerals.
Why use a Solicitor? - Olivia Egdell-Page, Joseph A. Jones and Co. Solicitors.
Can you have a greener funeral? - Gail Capstick, Transition City Lancaster.

2:30pm Death Cafe - Tea and free cake and chat.

3:00pm Conclusion.

Come along and hear speakers, watch films, eat cake and think about what you can do for yourself and for others.

Stalls: Staff and volunteers from St John's Hospice, Glass memorials and more.

For more information on this event feel free to contact the Continuing Learning Group
Tel: 07732027490

Tea and coffee available.

Everyone is Welcome.




Other news…

Of course, there are a number of local events taking place during Dying Matters Awareness Week, here is a selection:


Monday 8th May:

Woodland - French and Mottershead, Lancaster Arts at Lancaster University.
Poetic audio artwork. Tel: 01524 594151
https://www.lancasterarts.org/

The Etiquette of Grief: Ellie Harrison, Lancaster Arts at Lancaster University.
8pm A Guide to Coping with Bereavement.
https://www.lancasterarts.org/

Death Cafe, Esquires - Ian Dewar Hospital Chaplain 7pm.



Tuesday 9th May:

Dying Matters Event Hornby, Compassion in Dying and Phoenix Arts,
When I cannot speak what do I want to say? 10:00-12:00

Macmillan Bus Morrison’s Supermarket, Morecambe - all day.

The Crossing - Ellie Harrison 2-5pm
Conversations about ways to say goodbye.
Peter Scott Gallery, Lancaster University.


Wednesday 10th May:

Dying Matters Event,
Continuing Learning Group at St Pauls Parish Hall, 10-3pm
Film, talks, cake.


Thursday 11th May:

Exhibition, Manchester Whitworth Gallery.


Friday 12th May:

Big Bus, Leyland Supermarkets and St Catherine’s Hospice.


More information on Dying Matters Week events can be found here:
http://www.dyingmatters.org/



And finally…

Frailty Research- Friends Meeting House 10-12, Monday 8th May.
Dr Catherine Walshe is carrying out a research study and needs older people to take part in discussion of "frailty" and how best to support. If you would like to take part in Catherine’s research, please send her an email: c.walshe@lancaster.ac.uk


Thanks for your attention, have a good week.



27-04-17

At the end of a week which has seen the two outsiders take centre stage in the French General Election, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last week Lyn Summers, former Principal Inspector at the Health and Safety Executive's, Nuclear Installations Inspectorate set the scene for this term with his fascinating lecture 'Nuclear Energy - How do we know it's safe?'

Lyn is a retired Principal Inspector at the Health and Safety Executive's, Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (now an agency renamed the Office of Nuclear Regulation).

In his talk Lyn reviewed the basics of nuclear power technology, what is meant by 'safety' and how the criteria for safety has been developed in the UK and world-wide. He discussed how safety is analysed to establish that the criteria for safe operation are met. Finally, he spoke on various aspects with regards to designing and operating nuclear reactors to ensure they are safe to operate.

This was a very interesting lecture which informed us of the changes that have taken place in the nuclear industry over recent decades in an attempt to make the industry safer for both workers and the public. We then followed on from the lecture with a vibrant discussion where attendees were able to air their concerns about nuclear power and its long term issues.

I will be posting the audio version of the lecture online over the coming week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (3rd May 2017) Gary Rycroft, solicitor with Joseph A. Jones & Co. Solicitors will present his Lunchtime Lecture 'How to Disinherit Your Children'.

Gary attended Morecambe High School and then read Law at the University of Manchester. After taking his degree in 1994, he obtained a Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice at the College of Law in Chester. He was admitted as a solicitor in 1998 and joined Joseph A. Jones & Co in 2003, becoming a partner in 2005.

Gary undertakes a mixed caseload of work. He spends much of his time dealing with will drafting and trust and estate administration and enjoys lifetime planning for high value and complex estates, including the mitigation of Inheritance Tax. In recent years, Gary has also developed expertise dealing with a significant number of family inheritance disputes. Gary has an interest in dealing with the affairs of the elderly, powers of attorney and Court of Protection matters."

Gary also contributes to a number of publications and media including local and national newspapers, radio and television.

In this Lunchtime Lecture Gary will explore how we might disinherit our children.

Following on from the lecture we will have a short AGM then we will continue on with the Research & Discussion Forum as usual, where everyone will get chance to chat on the subject matter of the lecture.

All events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm. We hope you can join us.

Thanks for your attention.

Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)



18-03-17

Hello,

At the end of a week where many people celebrated Saint Patrick’s day, and American President, Donald Trump read out his favourite old Irish proverb, which was actually part of a poem "Remember to forget", written by Nigerian Albashir Adam Alhassan, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Bela Chattergee of Lancaster University Law School presented her Lunchtime Lecture 'Punishment Beyond the Legal Offender'.

In her lecture, Bela introduced us to the work of Megan Comfort, who has undertaken extensive study of the wives and girlfriends of inmates at San Quentin Prison, California. We heard how Comfort has examined the way in which for many loved ones, prison becomes a highly ambivalent space. We learned how the partners of prisoners experience a form of secondary prizonisation, where strict inhibitions are imposed on their lives similar to those experienced by their prisoner partners. Restrictions are imposed on their dress code, their time, their finances, amongst other things. However, Bela also spoke about the positive aspects experienced by the partners of prisoners, such as, increased safety from domestic violence, increased fidelity and devotion.

I will be posting the audio of Bela’s lecture online soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…

This coming Wednesday (22nd March 2017) Dr Emmanuel Tsekleves, senior lecturer in Design Interactions here at Lancaster University will bring our term to a close with his Lunchtime Lecture
'Ageing Playfully'.

Emmanuel designs interactions between people, places and products by forging creative design methods along with digital technology. His design-led research in the areas of health, ageing, wellbeing and defence has generated public interest and attracted media attention by the national press, such as the Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, The Times, the Daily Mail, Discovery News and several other international online media outlets.

Emmanuel researches health promoting innovations by 'designing out' the problems and barriers that prevent health-promoting behaviours. He designs technology inspired health interventions and services that are created by end-users that aim to improve quality of life through play and playful interactions. His research also looks at exploring healthy futures that ordinary people would prefer, by using design fictions (provocative prototypes) that engage and encourage people to envision, explain and raise questions about direction of future technology and society.

This looks like a great lecture to finish the term, with lots of chance to think positively about a future, where design can really be employed to benefit us all, rather than disable those of use with limiting conditions.

The lecture will take place in Fylde lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


And so, to the end of term…

As I mentioned, Emmanuel’s lecture will bring the term to a close. What a short term it seems to have been this time! We’ve had some exceptional lectures in such broad subjects as forensic radiology, Chippendale furniture and speech content. Could we be more far reaching? I think not, but we will try!

Next term begins for the CLG on Wednesday 26th April with a lecture by Lyn Summers on safety in regards to nuclear power. We also have lectures on how to disinherit your children, and the laws around religious symbols, and we will be hosting a special event to mark Dying Matters Awareness Week. So, no chance of getting bored, that’s for sure.

The new list of next term’s lectures will be posted here as we get confirmation:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

I hope you have a good break over the next few weeks. We look forward to seeing you again for the new term. If you have any friends or family members who you think might enjoy our programme, please do let them know about us or bring them along. Everyone is welcome.


Best wishes,

Dave and the whole Steering Group.



11-03-17

At the end of a week when we learned that a large marble flowerpot that has been languishing in the gardens of Blenheim Palace for more than a century turned out to be a 1,800 year old Roman sarcophagus worth £300,000, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday Dr Lara Warmelink of the Department of Psychology at Lancaster University presented her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Deception and Security'.

Firstly Lara began by looking at the status of lies. How they come about, the various types (white lies, truth bending, great big whoppers) and how they play a part in all our lives (not just the lives of politicians). As we moved through the world of untruths, we could feel a whole side of life, usually existing in the shadows, begin to come into clear view, presenting a whole range of possibilities.
We examined how body language and visual markers of lying can be inaccurate. We also were able to explore the difference between a lie and a piece of wrong information, believed to be correct. Lara really brought the subject to life and a certain sense of mischief bubbled under the surface throughout the session.

Finally, Lara discussed the specific area of her academic focus, that of Intentions. An altogether more mystical area of this fascinating subject.

I will be posting the audio recording of the lecture to our website soon. If you missed it, why not give it a listen. We will be sending a complimentary Rolls Royce Corniche to the 1000th listener. *wink*
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…

This coming Wednesday (15th March 2017) Dr Bela Chattergee of Lancaster University Law School will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Punishment Beyond the Legal Offender'.

Much attention has been paid to the prison population, but what of the loved ones whom they leave behind? This lecture introduces us to the ethnographic work of Megan Comfort, who has undertaken an extensive study of the wives and girlfriends of inmates at San Quentin Prison, California. Comfort examines the way in which for many loved ones, prison becomes a highly ambivalent space. We will learn how loved ones experience a form of secondary prizonisation, inhabiting a unique hinterland that is not quite free, yet not quite restricted. We will also discover how prison produces some surprisingly positive experiences alongside the negative ones.

Bela’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where group members will get plenty of chance to work with some of the ideas raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


We hope you can join us.




04-03-17

At the end of a week which has seen ‘Royle Family’ actor Ricky Tomlinson claim that the late ‘Countdown’ host Richard Whiteley was once a spy for MI5, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday Dr Siobhan Weare, lecturer with Lancaster Law School at Lancaster University, presented us with a lecture, quite different to the one we were expecting. Rather than the focus being on men as victims of domestic violence, Siobhan’s lecture focused on men as victims of sexual offences perpetrated by women. Despite this change of focus, attendees listened closely, asked some very worthwhile questions and fed back to Siobhan, via a written questionnaire, their feelings on the lecture content.

At present, the legal definition of rape in England and Wales is gendered, only recognising men as offenders. The law also only recognises as victims of rape, those who are penetrated by a penis.
This therefore excludes the female perpetrator-male victim paradigm, and more specifically those cases where male victims are ‘forced to penetrate’ female perpetrators. In her lecture, Siobhan argued that consideration needs to be given to legally recognising and thus labelling ‘forced to penetrate’ cases as rape.

In the Research & Discussion Forum which followed, we went on to discuss aspects of the lecture content, Siobhan’s expert delivery (which made a difficult subject more palatable) and our feelings on what the future might hold for legislation in this area.

I will be posting the audio recording of this lecture on our website over the coming weeks:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This week…


This coming Wednesday (8th March 2017) Dr Lara Warmelink of the Department of Psychology at Lancaster University will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Deception and Security'.

Lara’s research focuses on detecting lies about intentions. One part of this is the study of intentions themselves: how they are made, remembered and executed. Lara is also trying to adapt traditional lie detection methods to detect lies about intentions. She studies verbal and non-verbal cues to deception and also investigate the efficiency of using computerised reaction time tasks.

If you want to know more about my Lara’s research you can read her article (from The Psychologist, Oct. 2013) here:
http://tinyurl.com/p6tvcqn

Lara’s lecture will be followed as usual, by the Research & Discussion Forum. There will be plenty of chance to explore the themes raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

Other news…

Gendering Global Challenges: what accounts for the divergent outcomes of the Arab Spring
The lecture begins at 4.15pm on Thursday 9th March. It will be held in SR6, Bowland North.

The Arab Spring of 2011 engulfed much of the Middle East and North Africa, but most countries either reverted to authoritarian rule or became embroiled in violence and internationalised armed conflicts.

On Thursday 9th March 2017, Professor Valentine Moghadam will give a lecture on the outcomes of the Arab Spring of 2011. Professor Moghadam argues that women’s legal status, social positions, and collective action prior to the Arab Spring helped shape the nature of the 2011 mass protests. She will also show why women fared far worse in Egypt than in Morocco and Tunisia.

Valentine Moghadam is Professor of Sociology and Director of the International Affairs Program at Northeastern University, Boston, USA. Previously she has been a section chief at UNESCO in Paris and senior researcher at the United Nations University’s WIDER Institute in Helsinki, Finland.

This event is part of the Security Lancaster Seminar Series. For more information, please visit the Lancaster University website:
http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/security-lancaster/news-and-events/seminar-series/


25-02-17

At the end of a week in which Storm Doris brought winds of more than 80mph forcing airports to cancel flights, rail operators cancel trains, and the loss of one life when a woman in Wolverhampton was, unfortunately, hit by flying debris from a building, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Anne Wichman of the University of Central Lancashire’s Department of Language, Literature and International Studies presented her Lunchtime Lecture 'It’s Not What You Say But The Way That You Say It'.

In this lecture, Anne began with a discussion of ‘prosody’, the complex combination of pitch, loudness, speed and timbre, which serves to reinforce, or even completely change, the meaning of the words we speak. Anne discussed how we use prosody in our everyday interaction, and how consequences directly follow on from this. She also discussed some of the challenges it poses for speech technology, highlighting the relative ease of producing software which deals with a limited number of responses (such as a lift with only a certain number of floors), compared with speech-to-type software which must be able to work with a huge vocabulary and which benefits from learning from the individual user to become effective. We also looked at the possibility and limitations of using voice recognition for the future of digital access.

Anne’s lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees discussed aspects around prosody such as vocal expectation, occurrence in nature, and subversion of expectation.

The CLG would like to thank Anne for visiting us with such an interesting lecture, which took aspects of language we are all very familiar with, and then opened up a greater understanding for us all.

I will post the audio recording of the lecture to the website soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…

This coming Wednesday (1st March 2017) Dr Siobhan Weare, Lecturer with Lancaster Law School here at Lancaster University will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Men as Victims of Domestic Violence'.

Siobhan's research interests are focused in the areas of criminal law and criminal justice (sexual offences, homicide, domestic abuse), gender (masculinities, femininities, gender and crime, gender theories) and criminal legal and criminological theories. She is currently exploring the socio-legal responses to women who commit serious offences, including homicide and sexual violence. More generally, Siobhan is also interested in violence against women, domestic violence, sexual offences, and criminal legal and gender theory. In addition to lecturing, Siobhan is Deputy Director of Admissions and Director of Communications for the Law School. In this Lunchtime Lecture, Siobhan will explore the under documented area of men, as victims of domestic violence.

Siobhan’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will get the chance to continue the discussion begun in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

Thanks for your attention, have a good week.





18-02-17

At the end of a week where we heard that typical pensioner household incomes have overtaken working-age household incomes for the first time, and also learned that a quarter of this year's new pensioners will retire with a debt averaging more than £24,000, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Gill Baynes presented her second lecture on Forensic Radiology.
In this lecture Gill built on themes raised in her first lecture, and introduced us to a number of new themes. We looked at evidence produced from gun shots and stabbings, as well as evidence in children’s injuries which would point to mistreatment and the condition commonly known as ‘Shaken Baby Syndrome’. We were also introduced to what can ensue when risky sexual practices, such as autoeroticism, are carried out. We looked at the evidence which would indicate strangulation and hanging, and learned how we might differentiate between the two based on the radiological images.

This second lecture was a good addition to the previous lecture and, as promised, also worked as a stand-alone session. Expertly delivered, the lecture was packed with information and a few eye opening moments for the audience.

The audio recording of this lecture will be added to the website, here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…

This coming Wednesday (22nd February 2017) Professor Anne Wichman of the University of Central Lancashire’s Department of Language, Literature and International Studies will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'It’s Not What You Say But The Way That You Say It'.

Prosody is the key to successful speech communication.

Prosody, or "tone of voice", is a complex combination of pitch, loudness, speed and timbre, which serves to reinforce, or even completely change, the meaning of the words we speak. In this lecture, Anne will discuss how we use prosody in our everyday interaction, and also some of the challenges it poses for speech technology.

We are very pleased to welcome Professor Anne Wichmann to Lancaster University to present her lecture on language, intonation and its consequences.

Anne’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will have the chance to explore the ideas and thoughts which the lecture has raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.




12-02-17

At the end of a week which has seen Britain engaged in a fierce debate with itself over whether to welcome America’s President, Donald Trump, in light of the changes he has instigated against minority groups in the USA since his recent inauguration, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Debbie Parkinson, from the Innovation Agency showed the group a variety of practical technology enabled solutions to health improvement.
One of these was a wrist strap that can monitor exercise, sleep heart rate etc. in a similar way to a ‘Fitbit’. However, this one does more and costs less. She illustrated its usefulness with an anecdote from a diabetes patient who was suddenly experiencing sleep deprivation. A doctor viewing the data was able to adjust the timing of the patient safety food intake and the problem was solved.

We also enjoyed looking at 3D printed body parts used by surgeons to prepare for complex operations.
Try a Google search of ‘Get Active’ for a range of innovative technology that is available to purchase now.

The audio recording of the session will be added to the website soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…

This coming Wednesday (15th February 2017) Professor Gill Baynes, former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria and CLG Steering Group member will present
'Forensic Radiology #2'.

This is the second lecture Gill is presenting for us this term on Forensic Radiology.
Her first lecture was, given on 1st February, was hugely informative and clearly set the scene. This lecture takes things further, and promises to be equally fascinating.

Please Note: These lectures are designed to stand alone so don't worry if you were unable to attend the previous one, you will still learn a lot from this lecture.

Gill’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees can explore the subject further.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.




05-02-17

At the end of a week in which we learned that Hillary Clinton is to quit politics to open the world’s largest donkey sanctuary, and a parliamentary inquiry has been opened into the growing phenomenon of so-called "fake news", we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Gill Baynes presented the first of her two lectures on Forensic Radiology.
Gill expertly took us through the elements of radiology which are used to determine gender, such as pelvic width and skull details. We then moved on to age determination based on bone development and also looked at ethnicity indicators.
There were some challenging photos in the presentation illustrating the types of case that Forensic Radiologists deal with. For the benefit of the sensitive amongst us, Gill was kind enough to warn us beforehand. This was a fascinating start to the two lecture series, and we look forward to Gill’s next lecture, which will take place on Wednesday 15th February 2017.

We followed on from Gill’s lecture with a vibrant and far reaching discussion in the RDF….

I will post the audio recording of the lecture on our website in due course:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures




This week…

This coming Wednesday (8th February 2017) Debbie Parkinson (Innovation Agency) & Andrew Michaelson (Care Innovation) visit to present their session, 'Get Active: Improving Physical Fitness and Quality of Life through Group Activity'.

A little information about ‘Care Innovation’...

"Care Innovation is an assistive technology solution founded by specialists in practical technology-enabled care solutions that engage, support and benefit people with the widest possible range of needs. Care Innovation’s flagship programme is Get Active, an innovative digital physical activity service that supports groups or individuals. Get Active can transform health and wellbeing across a wide range of ages and needs through directed physical fitness promotion aimed at extending healthy lifespan and addressing issues such as social isolation and digital exclusion."

A little information on ‘The Innovation Agency’...

"We are the Academic Health Science Network for the North West Coast, covering Cheshire, Merseyside, Lancashire and South Cumbria, with around 4.1 million residents. Our footprint includes 22 NHS providers, 20 CCGs, nine universities and a large number of life science industry partners.

Our core purpose is to spread innovation, improve health, and generate economic growth.
We are catalysts for the spread of innovation at pace and scale - improving health, generating economic growth and helping facilitate change across whole health and social care economies.
We connect regional networks of NHS and academic organisations, local authorities, the third sector and industry - responding to the diverse needs of our patients and populations through partnership and collaboration.
We create the right environment for relevant industries to work with the health and social care system.​"


Following the lecture session there will be the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get chance to discuss many of the ideas raised.

We hope you can join us.




29-01-17

At the end of a week which saw the President of the United States and the Prime Minister of the UK walk hand in hand through the White House grounds, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Kamilla Elliott, Prof of Literature and Media with the English and Creative Writing Department at Lancaster University, presented her lecture 'Crime, Punishment, and Picture Identification in A Tale of Two Cities'.

In the lecture, Kamilla began by looking at the concept of picture identification in the Victorian era. Kamilla explained how rare pictorial ID was and how most ID was done using words and description. She also spoke about how people were wary of early photography, unsure of how reliable it was in presenting the likeness of a person accurately. We then looked at resemblance between individuals and how it might be exploited towards certain ends. Kamilla did an excellent job of exploring Dickens’ ideas and thought processes when constructing A Tale of Two Cities. The storyline was brought to life as we playfully explored Dickens’ work contextually.


We then moved on to the Research & Discussion Forum, which was dominated by our thoughts, feelings and fears in light of the recent political changes which have taken place in the USA.

I will add the audio recording of the lecture to the website over the coming days:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…

This coming Wednesday (1st February 2017) Professor Gill Baynes, former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria, CLG Steering Group Member & Chair of Lancaster & Morecambe U3A, will present her first lecture of a two lecture series entitled 'Forensic Radiology #1'

You will remember Gill from her recent sessions where she presented us with excellent lectures on medical ethics and various aspects of medical research. We are very pleased to welcome Gill (now a member of our Steering Group) back to give two lectures on Forensic Radiology.
Gill will discuss how Radiology contributes to forensics starting with the use of X-rays and moving onto the role that more sophisticated imaging modalities play. Issues addressed will include victim identification, establishing the cause of death and non-accidental injury in children.
These two lectures are not for the faint hearted!

Please Note: These lectures are designed to stand alone so don't worry if you are unable to attend both. The second lecture in this series will take place on Wednesday 15th February 2017.

The lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will be able to continue discussion on the Forensic Radiology theme.

Both the lecture and the R&DF will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


Other news…


This coming week, CLG member Alex Rizenko will take part in a campus event with the Lancaster University Rowing Society. This rowing event, which takes place in Alexander Square, will raise money for the mental health charity ‘Mind’ and in taking part, Alex aims to raise awareness of the possibilities for older people engaging in sporting events alongside younger participants. He will be representing the Continuing Learning Group, bringing much needed publicity to our cause. We would like to thank Alex and wish him the best of luck in his endeavours. Go Alex!


22-01-17

At the end of a week which saw the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States of America, immediately followed by the largest demonstrations ever witnessed in one day as women from all across the United States sent out a clear message that they will not tolerate second class citizen status, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday we began the term with an excellent Lunchtime Lecture by Dr Brian Hodgson, formerly of Lancaster University Ruskin Centre and a long standing member of the Continuing Learning Group, entitled 'The Age of Rococo, Hogarth and Chippendale'.

Brian began by illustrating how Englandboth copied from the French, yet despised them. Brian introduced us to Chippendale's book ‘The Gentlemen's and Cabinet-Maker's Director’, a book central to this evolution Brian also discussed how the work of Robert Adam had a great influence on the style of the time. We also explored the ways in which furniture was designed using basic plans, which could then be embellished to suit the client’s taste.

Brian presented a very enjoyable lecture where his love of furniture from that period was quite evident. He spoke with us of his desire to take his interest further, and we whole heartedly wish him the best in his endeavors in that direction.



Brian’s lecture was then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees had the chance to discuss further some of the ideas and themes which Brian had raised.

I will edit the audio recording of the lecture in due course, and hope to create an accompanying set of photographs which will assist when listening to the lecture.

This, and other lecture recordings will be available via this link:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



This week…

This coming Wednesday (25th January 2017) Professor Kamilla Elliott, of the Department of English and Creative Writing at Lancaster University will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Crime, Punishment, and Picture Identification in A Tale of Two Cities'.

Kamilla Elliott grew up in the UK, moving to the US after A levels. She received her B.A. in Mass Communications and Theatre from the University of Colorado in 1980 and pursued postgraduate studies in film at Boston University from 1981-82. After working in elder care and health research, she returned to academia in 1989, earning an A.L.M. degree through Harvard's adult education programme in 1991. From there, she entered Harvard University, where she completed a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and Language in 1996. She taught Victorian studies and interdisciplinary literature/film studies at the University of California at Berkeley from 1996-2004. During that time she published research on literature and film, including Rethinking the Novel/Film Debate (Cambridge UP, 2003).

Kamilla’s research interests lie in literature's relationship with other media, especially the visual arts and film. She has presented highly stimulating lectures for us in the past and we look forward to welcoming Kamilla back to the CLG to discuss ‘A Tale of Two Cities’.

We will then have a Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will be able to discuss themes from the lecture.



Other news…


A host of activities will be held in and around Lancaster to mark Holocaust Memorial Day 2017.

The University will host a commemoration and candle-lighting, a tree planting ceremony and a diversity tour, while events will also take place at the Priory, Lancaster Castle and the University of Cumbria.

This year's Holocaust Memorial Day has the theme 'How can life go on?'. Author and survivor of the Holocaust Elie Wiesel said: "For the survivor death is not the problem. Death was an everyday occurrence. We learned to live with Death. The problem is to adjust to life, to living. You must teach us about living." The aftermath of the Holocaust and of subsequent genocides continues to raise challenging questions for individuals, communities and nations. HMD 2017 asks audiences to think about what happens after genocide and of our own responsibilities in the wake of such a crime.

Holocaust Memorial Day is held on 27th January every year and remembers victims of the Holocaust as well as subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

Events in Lancaster are organised by the Lancaster & Lakes Jewish Community together with Faith in Lancaster, More Music, Lancaster City Council and Lancaster Priory Church.

The full programme of events is as follows…

Interfaith service at the Lancaster Priory.
Sunday 22nd January, 6.30pm
Music, prayers and reflections from a variety of traditions.

Film screening: The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
Tuesday 24th January, 6pm and Wednesday 25th January, 2pm
Book here: www.cumbria.ac.uk/about/events/university-events/lancaster/film-club-holocaust-memorial-day-on-the-27th-january.php

Commemorating the Holocaust at Lancaster Castle
Thursday 26th January, 6.30pm
The commemoration will begin at Lancaster Castle with candle lighting and prayers, followed by performances and reflections at the Storey.

Commemoration and candle lighting
Friday 27th January, from noon
Throughout the day, Alexandra Square, Lancaster University

Tree planting ceremony - Tu B'Shvat
Sunday 29th January, 10.45am
Celebrating the Jewish New Year at Lancaster University Memorial Woodland.

Diversity tour
Sunday 29th January, 11.15am
Starting in the Jewish Rooms at Lancaster University, enjoy a bagel brunch and then visit the Mosque in Lancaster.

For more information about local events, visit www.moremusic.org.uk/events/289/HMD2017
For information about Holocaust Memorial Day, visit www.hmd.org.uk




15-01-17

Hello,

I would like to begin by wishing you all a very healthy and prosperous new year.

Our new term begins this coming Wednesday (18th January 2017) with a lecture by Dr Brian Hodgson, formerly of Lancaster University Ruskin Centre entitled 'The Age of Rococo, Hogarth and Chippendale'.

"This is the eighteenth century when this country both copied from the French, yet despised them. It is the great age where the English seek their own style or styles. Chippendale's book The Gentlemen's and Cabinet-Maker's Director is central to this evolution, it came out in three editions--the first two were similar but the third edition shows Robert Adam's influence and the new Neo-classical where the style matured. The story includes some weird and doubtful business dealings including bogus claims to be working for the Royal Family and smuggling into England contraband flat pack furniture from despised France."

In this lecture Brian will focus on the 18th century with emphasis on Thomas Chippendale's work-‘the greatest cabinet maker in our history’. He will also discuss the style we call Rococo, its development in France and its mixed reception in Britain. We will look at the cultural climate and Chippendale's complicated response. His amazing business prowess will also be touched upon, and of course more fabulous chairs!

Brian’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get chance to explore themes and ideas from the lecture.

Events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm,
I hope you can join us. Feel free to bring a friend, all are welcome.

I’m pleased to say that last term’s lecture recordings are now all up on the website, including the fascinating recent lecture on Trump, Brexit and the Special Relationship.
This was an excellent talk, highly relevant in light of Trump’s forthcoming Presidential inauguration. I would recommend giving it a listen if you were unable to attend the session.
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures
To listen to this lecture recording, just click on the link above, wait for the player to load up, then click on the play button (circle with an arrow in it). Note: Please make sure your speakers are set at an appropriate level before attempting to play a lecture recording.


Also…

We would like to inform you about a forthcoming event.

Exhibition Launch.
6pm, Wednesday 25 January

Lancaster University Peter Scott Gallery would like to invite you to their upcoming exhibition launch where you can meet the artists: Rebecca Chesney and Andy Holden.

This season the gallery features work by Rebecca Chesney, an artist dealing with perceptions of climate change, land and environmental issues. This has a poignant resonance in the wake of the U.S. election where Chesney is currently undertaking a residency.

In the main gallery, there is a presentation of works by Andy Holden, whose films sit at the centre of an exhibition that rewrites physics using laws found in the world of cartoons.

During the evening you'll have the chance to hear from the artists themselves on their work and their exhibitions installed within the Peter Scott Gallery.

Exhibition Launch
Free. 6-7.30pm, 25 January 2017
Peter Scott Gallery, Lancaster

No pre-booking is required. Both exhibitions run until the 17 March 2017.
So, if you can’t make it along on the launch night, you have plenty of time to catch the exhibition over the coming weeks.

For more information on this and other Campus arts events, please visit the website:
https://www.lancasterarts.org/whats-on


Thanks for your attention.

Best wishes,
Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)



11-12-16


Hello,

At the end of a week which saw Morecambe Parish Church host a memorably colourful Christmas tree festival and Christmas market enjoyed by many, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday John Gilchrist blew our minds with his lecture on Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity. John demonstrated his extensive knowledge on the subject by explaining how Einstein was able to move from his earlier Special Theory of Relativity towards a theory which incorporates gravity. It is now 101 years since the theory was first proposed, and we still feel there is a way to go to gain a full understanding of our universe.

I will post the audio recording of this lecture online over the Christmas period:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This week…

This coming Wednesday (14th December 2016) is our last session of the year and we will pay a visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Research Centre to see the current exhibition entitled 'Gilded Shadows: the stones of Ruskin’s Venice'.

'Ruskin's first visit to Venice was in 1835 at the age of 16. The city, which he visited 11 times, had a lifelong influence on him, both emotionally and intellectually. Initially seduced by its romantic beauty, he later chose to undertake a far deeper study of its history, art and architecture than anyone had previously attempted, in his three volume major work The Stones of Venice. This exhibition shows highlights of his work from different visits side by side with recent photographs by renowned photographer of Venice, Sarah Quill. Her 40 years recording the architecture and daily life of Venice in photographs rivals Ruskin’s own fascination with, and dedication to, this beautiful city.'

Please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin Centre on campus (the white oval building by the roundabout) in the run up to 1pm.

This will be followed by a Jacob's Join in our usual venue (Fylde Lecture Theatre 3) to finish what has been a wonderfully interesting term. Please bring food and drink to share.

Other news…

Before we go, here is a research project which you may like to get involved in…

Juliana Kamaroddin, a PhD student at the InfoLab (Computing Department) from Lancaster University is looking for Cognitive Health Technology Workshop Participants. She is looking for 10-15 participants that are retired, healthy from cognitive impairment or any other mental health condition and aged between 60-80 years. As an incentive to help participants, Juliana will make a modest contribution to the cost of travel to the workshop.

This research is based on a case study called MODEM (Monitoring of Dementia using Eye Movements). MODEM is one kind of pervasive healthcare monitoring systems that uses eye tracking to detect early sign of dementia through eye movements with everyday activities such as watching TV and making tea. Its vision is to capture diagnostic eye movements and people’s behaviour at a natural and relaxed mode in a home environment setting with ambient and unnoticeable technologies. The department are interested in the general idea of participants being monitored in their home. They want to understand the practical difficulties of having sensors positioned in one’s own home. For example would it be appropriate to have eye trackers positioned in one’s living room and kitchen? Participants will be simply be asked for their reaction to some envisioned scenarios of how technology could be positioned within their home.

Juliana is hoping to conduct this workshop in January 2017. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Juliana direct:

Name : Juliana Kamaroddin (researcher)
Address : InfoLab21, Lancaster University, Lancaster, LA1 4WA United Kingdom
Telephone : 07514222365
Email : j.kamaroddin@lancaster.ac.uk

And finally…

The new term begins on Wednesday January 18th 2017, and we have some very interesting subject areas to explore. The schedule currently includes antique furniture, radiology, nuclear power, tomorrow’s world and a number of other areas yet to be confirmed. All in all it looks set to be quite fascinating. Keep an eye on our website for details as they are confirmed.

I think 2016 has generally been regarded as a challenging year, more so than most. I would like to wish you warm season’s greetings. We at the CLG Steering Group hope you enjoy your forthcoming seasonal celebrations, whatever form they may take. See you again in 2017!

With best wishes,

Dave and the whole Steering Group.




04-12-16

At the end of a week where we have said goodbye to the long-suffering Fawlty Towers waiter, Manuel (namely the highly respected actor Andrew Sachs), we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday Thomas Mills, lecturer in Diplomacy and Foreign Policy with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion here at Lancaster University presented his lecture 'Trump, Brexit, and the Future of the Special Relationship'.

2016 has been nothing if not a year of political upheaval. In this lecture Thomas began by outlining the history and details of the ‘Special Relationship’, the close political, diplomatic, cultural, economic, military and historical relations between the United Kingdom and the United States, first defined during the Churchill/Roosevelt era. We explored the reasons for such a relationship in terms of political common ground, but also in terms of the enablement of a relationship between the USA and the European Union.

Thomas then looked at the Trump phenomenon and the Brexit outcome of the referendum, drawing some comparisons and identifying some differences in terms of fear, hope and political game playing. We were able to appreciate how the outcome of these momentous political events, and no doubt forthcoming political events, emerge directly from the political and economic climate that precedes them.

I will be posting the audio recording of the lecture online in the near future:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

This week…

This Wednesday (7th December 2016) Dr John Gilchrist will present his Lunchtime Lecture ‘101 years of Relativity’.

“In 1905, Albert Einstein determined that the laws of physics are the same for all non-accelerating observers, and that the speed of light in a vacuum was independent of the motion of all observers. This was the theory of special relativity. It introduced a new framework for all of physics and proposed new concepts of space and time.

Einstein then spent 10 years trying to include acceleration in the theory and published his theory of general relativity in 1915. In it, he determined that massive objects cause a distortion in space-time, which is felt as gravity.” (From space.com)

John Gilchrist MA PhD (Cambridge) was supervised as a student by Professor Roland Dobbs who founded the Physics Department at Lancaster University. Until retirement he has since been a researcher at the Centre de Recherches sur les Très Basses Températures (CNRS) in Grenoble, France.

In this lecture John will examine Einstein’s theory, now 101 years old. The lecture will then be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will have plenty of chance to discuss issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in our usual room, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

Other news…

We would like to inform you of a project which is taking place…

Intergenerational Mentoring Project.

“We are just about to start in earnest the second year of a new mentoring project. It is run within the framework of the U3A, but you don’t need to be a member to become involved. The idea was ‘imported’ from Glasgow, where such a project has been running for about 5 years; more information about that project can be gleaned from their website: http://www.intergenerationalmentoring.com/ .

Our own project has developed very much along similar lines. We have a group of a dozen or more senior, experienced individuals of a wide range of professional backgrounds who are matched up with a corresponding number of students from the lower sixth form of Morecambe Community High School, the only local school currently involved in the scheme. The students are chosen by the school on the basis that they have the potential to progress to higher education and are considering it, but don’t have the higher education experience and knowhow within their friend-and-family-network that could help them clarify their aims in respect of a possible higher education course and negotiate the paths leading to successful entry into a rewarding course. The interactions are always student-led; the mentors are there to help open the students’ eyes to new possibilities, new ways of looking at the world and improving the quality of their decision-making.

Anyone who may be interested in becoming involved should contact the project organiser: Stephen Breuer (01524 63579 and s_and_b_breuer19@hotmail.com), who can provide more information about the project and about the experiences of the mentors in its first year of operation.”

This is a very worthwhile project, offering the chance for older people to have a positive impact on younger people’s futures. We hope you will consider taking part.

And finally…

Lancaster University Centre for Ageing Research are pleased to announce a seminar on environmental challenges in older age, including the impact of climate change (floods and heatwaves), and the potential risk of air pollution in the development of dementia. There will be a discussion of key issues following the presentations.


Time – Thursday 8th December 2016 1:30pm – 4:30pm
Place – Human Resources Building Training Room 1&2

Speakers:

Prof Barbara Maher & Prof David Allsop:
‘Airborne particulate pollution as a potential environmental risk factor for Alzheimer's disease’

Prof Gordon Walker
‘Heatwaves, vulnerabilities and climate change: problems for and with care provision for older people

C4AR members, postgraduate students and staff welcome. This seminar is free to attend but there are only limited places available.

Please register by contacting Jan Lyons at: jan.lyons@lancaster.ac.uk

For more information about the topic, please email: Dr Amanda Bingley, Division of Health Research.
(a.bingley@lancaster.ac.uk)

Thanks for your attention, have a good week.


27-11-16

At the end of a week where we’ve experienced hard frosts heralding the approach of Winter Solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah and a whole range of celebrations taking place in the final furlong of 2016, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr Maria Christou, who recently gained her PhD, visited us to give her lecture 'Depictions of Genetically Modified Foods in Contemporary Fiction'.

Maria began by situating the issue of genetically modified foods in Foucauldian terms regarding binary positions of natural/unnatural, normal/abnormal. This was a useful starting point. Though, in some ways over simplistic, she was able to demonstrate how this framework has defined the discourse around GM foods. Maria looked at public perceptions around the crossing of boundaries, between plants, plants and animals etc. Attention was also given to the ethics, both in terms of the biological aspects and the business practices. We then looked at literature which has explored these areas utilising the fictional novel format.

This was a very multidimensional lecture with plenty of food for thought (no pun intended) around GMOs, the increasing role of large corporations, ethics and of course fictional literature as a format for exploring large issues.

Unfortunately, we are unable to post an audio version of the lecture online as Maria has a book on the subject coming out in the next year. However, we do hope to invite her back to talk with us again when her work has been published.


As usual, we chatted about the themes afterwards in the Research & Discussion Forum. Attendees aired their fears and concerns about the future of our food and business practices, as well as expressing their optimism in certain areas.

This week…

This coming Wednesday (30th November 2016) Dr Thomas Mills, Lecturer in Diplomacy and Foreign Policy with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion here at Lancaster University, will present his timely Lunchtime Lecture entitled 'Trump, Brexit, and the Future of the Special Relationship'.

2016 has been nothing if not a year of political upheaval. This lecture explores the prospects for Britain's 'special relationship' with the United States in the context of Brexit and the US Presidential election.

Thomas states…

"My research lies in the field of international relations in the twentieth century, with particular interests in US foreign policy towards Latin America and diplomatic relations between the US and Great Britain. My recent book, Post-War Planning on the Periphery, explored Anglo-American relations in South America during the Second World War in the broader context of the post-war economic diplomacy undertaken by the wartime allies. My current research projects include a collaborative project exploring Anglo-American relations in Latin America throughout the 20th century; an exploration of the role of British and American business groups in economic diplomacy; and a project exploring Britain's emerging role in Latin America at the turn of the 21st century."

This promises to be a very interesting and topical lecture and there will be plenty of chance to pose questions and theorise on the future of politics on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm, with the Research & Discussion Forum following at around 2.30pm in the same venue.

We hope you are able to join us.



Other news…

The Continuing Learning Group is having a baby!

We are very pleased to announce that Steering Group member Zsuzsanna and her husband, long time CLG supporter, Rory are due to have a baby in June of 2017. We would like to congratulate them wholeheartedly. We look forward to a new CLG member down the line.

Thanks for your continued support, have a good week.


20-11-16

At the end of a week when we have been graced with a supermoon, appearing around 14% bigger and 30% brighter than usual, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday Dr Garuth Chalfont of the Department of Health Research at Lancaster University, spoke to us about non-drug treatments to Intervene and prevent dementia.

Garuth discussed the high costs of dementia, in both monetary and emotional terms. We were told of a range of holistic approaches which can serve as treatments to help slow the rate of cognitive decline of those with dementia. Garuth has worked on a number of different garden designs which are aimed at those living with the condition. We heard about evidence of the benefits of appropriate activities, diet, cognitive stimulation, nature and psychological therapies to treat dementia.

We then followed on from the lecture with vibrant discussion in the Research & Discussion Forum. The afternoon provided attendees with a valuable chance to look at dementia from a different angle, which was very encouraging.


I will be posting the audio recording of the lecture online soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This week…

This coming Wednesday (23rd November 2016) Dr Maria Christou of the English & Creative Writing department at Lancaster University, will present her Lunchtime Lecture, ‘Depictions of Genetically Modified Foods in Contemporary Fiction'.

Maria completed her PhD on the subject of food in twentieth-century literature and philosophy last academic year. Since then she has been working on another food-based project. Maria will speak on the representation of genetically modified food in contemporary fiction. The talk will explore the ethical ambiguities and unintended consequences that emerge from strict for/against positions on the matter.

Maria’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get plenty of chance to discuss the issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

We hope you can join us.


13-11-16

At the end of a week where we’ve said goodbye to actor Robert Vaughn, so long to singer/poet Leonard Cohen, and have remembered those lost in violent conflict over generations, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday Steering Group member Janet Ross-Mills spoke to us about the work she’s been carrying out with Lancaster and Morecambe Age UK around advanced planning for end of life.

The 'My Life, My Decision' project, which has run over the last couple of years, focussed on giving us all the chance to plan ahead and take important decisions well in advance of the final chapter of our lives. This project aimed to give people greater control and, in turn, more peace of mind with regards to the future.

Janet expertly took us through the advantages brought about by the project with reference to some participants. We heard of the areas which the project has covered such as planning, decision making, power of attorney, personal choice, and how families can be made aware of one’s preferences and wishes.

The lecture was followed by a vibrant and interesting Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees explored many of the issues raised.

We also watched a short film, made during the project by Compassion in Dying, which included our Steering Group member and good friend, George Henson. You can view this 5 minute film here:
https://youtu.be/ELnP0eSgSdo



This week…

16th November 2016 - Dr Garuth Chalfont, Research Associate with the Department of Health Research here at Lancaster University will present his Lunchtime Lecture on ‘Non-Drug Treatments to Intervene and Prevent Dementia’.

“Dementia costs the UK £26 billion yearly with no promising medicines on the immediate horizon. Meanwhile, holistic studies that have tested more than one factor successfully lowered dementia risk, slowed the decline, even reversed symptoms. It is high time to consider the evidence about activities, diet, cognitive stimulation, nature and psychological therapies to treat dementia. Come and hear the latest good news.”

Dr Garuth Chalfont, is a leading practitioner in the art and science of healing gardens, therapeutic spaces, and dementia gardens that incorporate the natural world into the healing process.
His design philosophy promotes activity with meaning and purpose, for rehabilitation and wellbeing, regardless of disability or impairment.

Garuth’s lecture will be followed, as usual, with the Research & Discussion Forum where there will be plenty of chance to discuss the concept of non-drug treatments for Dementia.

The Lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm, with the R&DF following in the same venue after a short refreshment break.


We hope you can join us.





06-11-16

At the end of a week which has seen the Lancaster and Morecambe district move from the darkness of Halloween into the ‘Light up Lancaster’ festival and then onwards into the Guy Fawkes bonfire and fireworks celebrations, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Jim Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, took us through the subject area of Sentencing as part of the role of Magistrates in the UK. Jim presented us with a session which rounds off our series, a series that has been both interesting and informative. He enlightened us to the essential aspects of law, which must be taken into account when setting the appropriate sentence for a crime which has been committed. We then followed on with a Research & Discussion Forum which gave us the chance to fully explore the themes raised in the Lunchtime lecture.

This week…

This coming Wednesday (9th November 2016) Steering Group member, Janet Ross-Mills, who has been carrying out work for Lancaster and Morecambe Age UK, will present a Lunchtime Lecture considering her 'Conclusions from the Advanced Planning Project'.

As Janet comes to the end of the Age UK coordinated project 'My Life, My Decision', she will look back over the project, considering what has been learned, and how this worthwhile approach to our end of life care can be beneficial to us.

This will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will have a chance to look at the project and discuss its merits. This has been, in many ways, a ground breaking project enabling people to take control of their futures and to put in place plans that will benefit them at the end of life. We hope to look at the merits of the project and explore the value it might have in a wider context as we all live longer and face a number of important decisions as a consequence.

The Lunchtime Lecture and the Research & Discussion Forum will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

For more information on this and other lectures, take a look here::
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures



30-10-16

At the end of a week which has seen preparations take shape for both Diwali (festival of light) and Halloween (celebration of all things dark), we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday we were visited by Dr Jude Towers who spoke on the political aspects of statistics, with particular attention given to statistics around domestic violence.

Jude explained how the way we count has a significant impact on the data we collect, the methods we use to analyse it and the findings produced. Using a case study on violent crime, Jude explored what happened when she challenged a statistical solution to a substantial problem resulting in the reversal of the official trend in domestic violent crime, violent crime against women and ultimately in violent crime in England and Wales, post financial crisis.

The lecture was based on research carried out for an ESRC-funded Secondary Data Analysis Initiative by Professor Sylvia Walby, Professor Brian Francis and Jude, herself. This lecture gave great insight as to how statistics are used, and how quantitative research can enlighten us to social trends enabling us to gain a greater understanding.

The lecture created a great buzz amongst all attendees and this was carried into the Research & Discussion Forum which followed. Thanks go out to Jude who expertly raised our interest in quantitative research and the possibilities which it opens up.


This week…

This coming Wednesday (2nd November 2016) James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, will return to present the final Lunchtime Lecture on the subject of Magistracy. This session will focus on sentencing, an interesting area of Magistracy which is partly decided by the Magistrate themselves and partly by the framework of law which is firmly in place. Jim will look at the influences which must be taken into account when carrying out sentencing on a person who has been found guilty of committing an offence.

We will follow the lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will be able to continue the discussion around themes which have been raised in the lecture, and indeed the series of lectures of which this marks the conclusion.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


23-10-16

At the end of a week which saw deteriorating relations between the presidential candidates in the final televised debate before the American election, and things finally come to a head between neighbours Sam and Terry after that (alleged) punch up in the street, fuelled by the long running boundary fence dispute and copious amounts of alcohol, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…
Last Wednesday we paid a visit to Lancaster Magistrates Court where Jim Dickinson educated us to the protocols of the building. Jim and his colleague led a fascinating session where group members took part in a piece of scripted drama based around a dispute between neighbours (Sam and Terry, above) which culminated with one person getting hurt. This was an excellent way of introducing us to the fine points of a case which must be carefully considered in order to reach a verdict. We were able to see how the rule of law operates, with the ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ aspect of British law having many implications. This was a great learning process, clearly demonstrating that no case is ever straight forward, and that even the most simple of cases involves a large amount of data, witness testimonies, evidence and difficult decisions.
The final session of our Magistracy lectures will be on the subject of sentencing and will take place on 2nd November 2016. More of this in next week’s CLG News.

This week…
This coming Wednesday (26th October 2016) Dr Jude Towers, Lecturer in Sociology & Quantitative Methods here at Lancaster University will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'The Politics of Counting: Is Violence Increasing or Decreasing in England and Wales?'
‘The way we count has a significant impact on the data we collect, the methods we use to analyse it, the findings produced and thus what we know about the social world and how we design our research, policy and practice interventions in pursuit of making the world a better place. What or who is included or excluded, the boundary of our definitions, and the theory of change we seek to test and develop (whether implicit or explicit) are fundamental parts of the process and require critical examination.
Using a case study on violent crime, we will explore what happened when we challenged a statistical solution to a substantial problem resulting in the reversal of the official trend in domestic violent crime, violent crime against women and ultimately in violent crime in England, post financial crisis.’
Jude’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will get plenty of chance to discuss the many issues which may well be raised in this lecture.
The day’s events will begin at 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3, with the Research & Discussion Forum following the lecture around 2:30.
For more information on this and other aspects of the programme:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/home
Other news…
I would like to draw you attention to some up-coming research which Georgia Jameson and her colleague, Alex are undertaking in the next month, under supervision from Dr Trevor Crawford at Lancaster university.
Georgia, a third year Psychology student is researching in the area of memory/dementia, and in particular investigating the effects of bilateral eye movements on episodic memory. As such Georgia and Alex need participants to take part in the experiment and would welcome any members of your group who would be interested in taking part.
The date of the experiment is not set at this stage, however they are looking to conduct their experiment in the next two to four weeks.
If any members would like to take part or would like any more information please don't hesitate to email Georgia and Alex. The email address is:
g.jameson1@lancaster.ac.uk
Your participation would be highly appreciated.




17-10-16

At the end of a week which has seen Lancaster firing on all cylinders with the wonderful music festival, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

The term got off to a great start last Wednesday with a fabulous introduction to the subject of Magistracy, confidently presented by Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, James Dickinson.

Jim contextualised Magistracy in a way that clarified the difference between two areas of the criminal justice system, Magistrates and Crown. We heard about the distinction between criminal and civil law and also adult and youth courts. This was a great introduction which set the scene for our next session. We followed the lecture with a vibrant and energetic Research & Discussion Forum where Jim took part and answered all our questions.

Next week…

This coming Wednesday (19th October 2016) we will have our next session with Jim. This will take the form of a ‘Mock Trial’. In this session, which takes place in Lancaster Magistrates Court (behind Lancaster Town Hall and across from Lancaster Police Station), we will have the chance to look at the form of a court case in the context of the court environment. Using a set script, we will create a case, which we will then be able to explore in detail until we are able to come to a verdict, based on the available evidence.

This is the perfect chance to look at Magistracy from the inside, and the session promises to be an exciting and unique experience. If you plan on joining us for this session, and we hope you will, feel free to bring a friend who might also enjoy it. We would like to thank Jim and his colleagues for making this session available. It will be, I’m sure, an excellent way for us to put ourselves in the shoes of the Magistrate/court room staff/accused and gain a better understanding of how the process of law operates in the UK. We hope to have a guided tour of the court building (circumstances permitting), and there will be plenty of chance to chat with Jim and get answers to any questions you may have.

We will gather in the Magistrates Court foyer at 12:55, where Jim will meet us and take us into the court.
Please bear in mind that the court building will be operating as it does on a daily basis, though the courtroom we will use has been reserved for us.

For more details of our upcoming Lunchtime Lectures and events, visit our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/home







07-10-16

Hello,

We start our new academic year this coming Wednesday (12th October 2016) in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 (as last year) from 1pm with an interesting lecture which will serve as our introduction to the fascinating subject of Magistracy given by James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, to begin our new term.

This is the first of our run of three Lunchtime lectures on this subject, which will take place over the coming weeks.

The timetable looks like this at present…

12th October 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.
'Introduction to Magistracy'
James will give us a well-rounded introduction to the subject area.

19th October 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.
'The Mock Trial'
Please note: this session will take place in Lancaster Magistrates Court.
This will be a chance to engage with the fascinating subject of Magistracy and help us to begin to appreciate the challenges faced when dealing with the justice system.

26th October 2016 - Dr Jude Towers, Lecturer in Sociology & Quantitative Methods, Lancaster University.
'The Politics of Counting: Is Violence Increasing or Decreasing in England and Wales?'
Jude will look at statistics in relation to violent crime, how they are gathered and used.

2nd November 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.
'How Sentencing Works'
In this final session on the subject of Magistracy, Jim will look at sentencing and how it works in practice.

9th November 2016 - Janet Ross-Mills, Lancaster University CLG Steering Group & Age UK.
'Conclusions from the Advanced Planning Project'
In this session, Janet will look back over the ‘My Life, My Decision’ project which she has been involved with over the last couple of years.

Below I have include the usual introductory information, which you might wish to refresh yourself with in the run up to the new term. If you have friends who might benefit from knowing about us, please pass the information on to them. We love to have new attendees and everyone is welcome!

Enjoy the last of your summer/autumn break.
We hope to see you on the 12th!

Regards,

Dave
(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)


......................................


Intro Pack…

Continuing Learning Group 2016/2017 Academic Year.

2016-2017 academic year begins on Wednesday 12th October 2016

Lunchtime Lectures will start at 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3.
The first part of the term will focus on Magistracy and the Politics of Crime Statistics.
(A minimum £1 donation is requested towards the operating costs, as we are a volunteer run group and receive no funding from the University)

Further information on Lunchtime Lectures can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures



Research and Discussion Forum: This will again follow each Lunchtime Lecture and will encourage participatory discussion following on from the lecture or other topics of interest.
During the last academic year, this part of the programme proved to be extremely popular and well attended. We look forward to more vibrant discussion stimulated by the lectures, current affairs and forthcoming events.

Further information on the RDF can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28G%29+Research+%26+Discussion+Forum



Open Lectures: Older learners may sit in on a selection of first year undergraduate lectures. The list of lectures can be found via link below.
This part of our programme provides the perfect opportunity for you to get a taste of contemporary undergraduate student education, and a solid background in your selected subject. If you are interested in attending any of the Open Lectures please email: seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk or telephone Nigel: (01524) 381783

Please note: There is a charge of £20 per subject for the academic year to cover university admin costs.

Full details of the Open Lectures we currently offer can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28F%29+Open+Lecture+Scheme


Newsletter: We will continue to send out our weekly CLG News via email. If you have recently changed your email please let us know. If you have a friend who would benefit from being on our email list, please send us their email address and we will add them.


Website: Our website is proving to be hugely popular both locally and globally, receiving between 1,000 and 4,000 visitors every week! It's a great way to keep up to date with CLG news and developments.

Our website can be accessed here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/home


Accessibility: If anyone has any difficulties please contact us. (Contact details below)
Buses: 2/2A/3/3A/4/40/41/42 and others.
Car: Parking spaces are limited and charges apply.
Fylde College Lecture Theatre 3, is located on the South Spine, maps are available here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28L%29+Campus+Map+%26+Directions


Steering Group Members Are:
Nigel Cole
Zsuzsanna Brennan-Daly
Rita Gerrard
George Henson
David John Marshall
Dave Pedder
Janet Ross-Mills

If you have any questions, please feel free to approach any of the Steering Group members at the lecture or discussion forum. They are happy to help.


Contact Details:
Continuing Learning Group,
C4AR,
Rm C06,
Furness Building,
Lancaster University,
LA3 4YG

Email Us: seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk



27-09-16

Hello,

I hope you are well and enjoying the change going on around us as we move from summer into autumn.
The Continuing Learning Group is set to start again on Wednesday 12th October at 1pm in the usual venue of Fylde Lecture Theatre 3.

I would, at this point, like to draw your attention to this year’s selection of Open Lectures which are now confirmed. The full selection of lectures and lecture series outlines can be found at the bottom of this email. As you may know, The Open Lectures scheme was instigated by Professor Keith Percy in the Department of Continuing Education around 40 years ago. The scheme offer the chance for older learners to sit in on a number of first year undergraduate lectures which take place in and around the university. We in the CLG Steering Group feel it is an important and valuable link between the University and the people of Lancaster, Morecambe and surrounding district, so continue to champion the scheme and run it voluntarily. It has proved to be a popular part of the programme, benefitting senior learners, undergraduates and lecturers too.

This year we have, once again, managed to put together a broad selection of subjects such as Sociology, Law, Ethics and Biomedicine. We hope there is something for everybody!

There is a small charge of £20 for each lecture series you embark on, which goes to the department to cover their admin costs. However, this is a fair price when you take into account the cost to undergraduates to attend these lectures. There is also a protocol for older learners attending Open Lectures, this can be found here.
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28F%29+Open+Lecture+Scheme

If you feel you would like to attend one or more subjects on offer in the Open Lecture series, please call Steering Group member Nigel on (01524) 381783 or drop us a line at seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk


Other News…

A number of our members attended the Ageing and Security Conference which took place at Lancaster University over the summer, hosted by the Centre for Ageing Research.

Janet Ross-Mills reports back on the event…

‘The day began with a retired police officer telling us how he and his wife were attacked and robbed in their own home in the late afternoon. They were expecting the milkman and the two assailants stood one behind the other so that it looked like one person viewed through frosted glass and Mrs E. opened the door. It was a disturbing reminder to be vigilant and have a good view of your physical environment.
The speakers progressed through various aspects of crime involving technology and highlighted particular vulnerability in older people. This is partly due to ingrained attitudes of respect for institutions like banks and authorities, tendency to use second hand gadgets and inability to recognise signs that younger people might be more alert to.
The good news is that people of any age can learn these skills and with a growing number of cyber crimes being committed it is clear that we cannot rely on technology to protect us. We have to develop a sound understanding of the technology we are using and how we can protect ourselves.

Top tips from the day were:

*use strong passwords and change them from time to time. Do not use the same password for multiple accounts.

*shred documents and bills before putting them in the bin.

*change the default password on your router.

*never press the "No Thanks" buttons on unsolicited offers.

It is estimated that £35 billion is lost to mass marketing fraud in the UK annually. Don't be a victim. Improve your security and we at CLG will seek speakers on this area to address our group so that we will all be better protected in future. If you don't know the difference between phishing, pharming and phlopping you can look at Webepedia which explains the terminology used in the world of IT.

As always it was a superb day and we would like to thank Trevor Crawford and the Centre for Ageing Research for hosting the day.’


And Finally…

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Steering Group member Zsuzsanna Brenner, and long-standing friend and supporter of the CLG, Rory Daly on their recent marriage. The couple conducted a ceremony in Zsuzsanna’s home country of Hungary, and another here in the UK, so all family and friends could attend. We wish them a long and happy life together. Congratulations!

Thanks for your attention.
I will send out an introductory email to begin the new academic year, in the run up to the start of term.

Enjoy the rest of your break.

Regards,

Dave
(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)




This year’s selection of Open Lectures is as follows…


LING 102
English Language
These lectures aim to introduce students to the English language – how to describe it, how it varies and how it functions in a variety of contexts. Students will not only study the traditional linguistic areas of English (e.g. lexis, grammar, phonetics), but also areas that are often overlooked (e.g. letters, spellings) and areas that have more recently come to the fore, such as pragmatics or conversation analysis.

Students will learn about linguistic frameworks in the analysis and explanation of variation in English, both present-day and, to a lesser extent, historical.



SOCL 101
Introduction to Sociology
These lectures aim to introduce you to sociological issues, ideas, concepts, evidence and argument by examining some key aspects of living in the contemporary world.

Students will be introduced to debates and issues related to various aspects of contemporary societies and encouraged to explore ideas and undertake analysis. In this respect, it is perhaps better to think of sociology as an interpretative scientific endeavour rather than producing definitive findings or laws, although it may do this too.



GWS 101
Introduction to Gender and Women’s studies
Gender and Women's Studies considers the kinds of power that women and men have developed, the forms of organisations and institutions in which they participate and the ways in which women have resisted marginalisation.

Students will be introduced to crucial categories of difference and forms of inequality such as race, gender, class, disability and sexuality and we will explore how gender identities are constructed.



PHIL 100
Introduction to Philosophy
How should we live? Is there a God? Are we free to act as we wish if everything is determined by prior causes? Why should we obey the law? Can science discover all the facts that can be known?

These are some of the many challenging questions students will engage with. We approach these questions through the history of Philosophy – studying figures such as Plato, Descartes, Kant and Nietzsche amongst others.



CREW 103
Creative Writing
These lectures aim to offer insight into issues such as plot construction, character development, and the use of poetic form. We also value the opportunity to expose students to writers talking about their practice.



POLI 100
Understanding Politics and Governance
These lectures aim to be accessible to those who have studied Politics before, but also to those who have not. They will provide an introduction and a foundation for future study.

Students are introduced to the principles, practice and institutions of ‘liberal democracy’, the foundations of the liberal state, liberty and democracy, and examine their meaning, value and compatibility.



EPR 100
Ethics, Philosophy and Religion
What is the meaning of life? What does it mean to be human? What do we owe to other people? How can we understand our relationship with the divine? What does it mean to talk about the divine or the infinite? Can we have decent and meaningful human relationships without the presence of something greater? Are these questions universal, or culturally specific?

These lectures aim to offer students the knowledge and skills to approach fundamental questions about the meaning of life and the human condition with confidence and, crucially, to consider what is at stake in ethical reasoning with self-assurance and maturity.
The perspectives offered include the philosophical, theological, religious, western, Asian, the cross-cultural, ancient and modern.



RST 100
World Religions
These lectures aim to provide an outline of the growth and development of the world’s major religious traditions, their primary characteristics, and subsequently consider some of the various forms they take in the contemporary world.

The lectures aim to reflect on four religious traditions – Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam. They will set each religion in context and set out the varieties of its beliefs. Students will explore religious ethics and practice, and examine some of the contemporary issues facing these religions today.



BIOL 133
Ethics and Biomedicine
These lectures are suitable for those with a broad interest in the biochemical processes of life and how these are altered by disease. We have extensive links with local hospitals, both in research activities and in the teaching on our biomedical-based courses.

These lectures are designed to provide students with a broad overview of subject disciplines and includes Molecules of Life, Biomedicine and Society, Organic Chemistry, and Anatomy and Tissue Structure.



BIOL 135
Introduction to Epidemiology: Global Health and Disease
These lectures aim to give students a basic understanding of some of the key concepts and debates within epidemiology, including the methodological approaches used to measure health, illness and disease in human populations.
Students are given the tools to develop an awareness of the processes of demographic transition and global ageing and a broad understanding of the effects of climate change on health.



LAW 103 R
Law of Torts
These lectures introduce students to the law of torts, covering topics such as negligence, trespass, nuisance, Rylands v Fletcher, breach of statutory duty, defamation and privacy. Students will engage with theoretical perspectives and academic critique as well as the substantive law in order to gain an informed and critical overview of the subject.



LAW 264
Lawyers and Society
The legal profession and legal services are currently experiencing major changes as a result of commercialisation, inter and intra professional competition, globalisation, the culture of human rights, pressure to improve access to justice, the intensification of conflicts of interest, the impact of information technology, the changing character of legal work, and the growing number of lawyers who were long excluded - women and racial minorities.

These lectures aim to provide a critical examination of the development, current state and likely future shape of the legal profession.



LAW 240
Family Law
These lectures aim to introduce students to a collection of laws as they impact upon the family as a unit and upon the individuals within a familial group. They seek to inform students to develop a critical approach to the law in this area, and to take law as an object of study and examine how family relationships are understood in that context.



LAW 343
Health Care Law and Ethics
These lectures aim to introduce students to the underlying conceptual framework and basic principles of health care law. Students may then utilise their understanding of these foundational issues through exploring specific and complex areas of health care law and practice, from a medico-legal and ethical perspective. The chosen areas will reflect current medical advances and the developing nature of medical and ethical practice.



LEC 103
Environmental Processes and Systems
These lectures aim to provide an introduction to environmental processes and their impacts at a range of spatial scales and in a variety of environments.

Key themes include the study of global climate and associated environmental change, Earth surface materials and the flows which produce distinctive and dynamic landscape forms, and the processes which influence the development of soils and associated ecosystems at the land surface.



LEC 172
Geological Processes
These lectures aim to convey why it is important for scientists, whatever their discipline, to have a basic understanding of geological processes.

Emphasis is placed on the dynamic way in which the Earth works. Geological processes explored include: formation of minerals, volcanism, metamorphism, sedimentation and deformation.




19-06-16

Hello,

As we enter the final week of this academic year for the CLG (therefore, successfully completing 10 full years of the senior education programme at Lancaster University. Hurrah!), we look back at last week’s lecture, look forward to next week’s and reflect on what we have achieved.


Last week…

Last Wednesday Jim Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, presented his lecture on
'The History of the Magistracy'.

As I mentioned previously, this lecture signifies the beginning of a series of sessions which will take place next academic year on the subject of Magistracy and how it works in practice. In this first session, James set the scene with an accessible history of Magistracy in this country.

Starting in October, we will have a comprehensive introduction to the fascinating theme of magistracy, followed by a mock trial which we can take part in. Lastly we will have a session on how sentencing works after a guilty verdict is reached. It is a great privileges to have Jim run these sessions for the CLG and we look forward to gaining a much better understanding of the subject as a result.


Next week…

Our final Lunchtime Lecture of this term, which takes place this coming Wednesday (22nd June 2016) will be given by Professor Christine Milligan. The subject will be ‘Care, Coping and Identity: older men’s experiences of spousal care-giving’.

In this lecture, Christine (who is the Director of the Centre for Ageing Research - our home in Lancaster University, and a good friend to the CLG), will explore an often overlooked area of research, that of older men's experiences of spousal care giving. We are very pleased to welcome Christine to present the ultimate lecture of this term and academic year.

Please note, this final lecture will take place in Furness Lecture Theatre 3 (above Pizzetta Republic) at the usual time, 1pm.

We will follow Christine's lecture with a Jacob's Join (in the same room), where attendees are invited to bring food and drink to celebrate the end of this academic year.

Christine's lecture also marks the completion of 10 years of the senior education programme at Lancaster University. The Senior Learners Programme, started by Fiona Frank and Keith Percy of the Continuing Education Department, began in 2006 and had many of the same members who constitute the CLG, including attendees and Steering Group members. We have seen the senior education programme change over the years from a funded series of lectures and workshops put on by Lancaster University, to a self-supporting programme of lectures, discussions and research projects run by the group members themselves and backed by a successful website, regularly visited by learners all over the world.

We have experienced lots of changes and faced many challenges over the past ten years, but have worked hard to keep the programme dynamic and relevant despite a harsh recession and numerous changes of focus for British university education as a whole. We have not only survived against the odds, we have flourished. This is a great achievement and something we’re extremely proud of. We are eternally grateful to those who have joined us on this journey, in whatever capacity (departmental staff, volunteers, lecturers, researchers, students, retired people, visitors to Lancaster, visiting organisation members, family and friends). We also fondly remember those we have lost along the way. Most of all we look forward to continuing onwards in the spirit to which we are accustomed.

We begin the 11th year of a Senior Education Programme at Lancaster University in October 2016 and hope you will come along with us and enjoy the ride.

Lastly…

I would like to bring your attention to a couple of future events which you might want to be involved in…

The Centre for Ageing Research are running a seminar/webinar on Thursday 23rd June 2016 from 2pm till 6pm in Furness Lecture Theatre 1. The subject is ‘Non-Drug Treatments to Intervene and Prevent Dementia’.

Attendees to this event will hear from practitioners, clinicians and researchers specializing in a range of therapeutic approaches to memory and cognitive health in ageing.

Topics will include nutritional medicine, Ayurvedic nutrition, hypnotherapy, glucose and cognition, MCTs, cognitive activation, culinary medicine, nature and horticulture.

Exploring the research evidence for holistic non-drug interventions.
Encouraging business, therapists & practitioners to provide such options.
Engaging local people with memory problems in research on outcomes.

Places are free but limited so booking is recommended. Contact Jan Lyons (jan.lyons@lancaster.ac.uk) to book a place.

For more information and instructions for joining the webinar online:
http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/fhm/research/centre-for-ageing-research/#newsampevents


And…


Hearing and Ageing…

As we age our ability to understand speech often gets worse, especially in noisy environments. Sometimes this happens even though routine audiological tests turn out to be fine.

The causes of these age-related hearing difficulties in the absence of a clinical hearing loss are not fully understood. These hearing difficulties may be due to a partial loss of the nerve fibers responsible for transmitting sound signals, or to subtle changes occurring to these nerve fibers.

We are conducting an experiment that aims to clarify the causes of age-related hearing difficulties. This is a fundamental step towards developing early diagnosis and treatment of age-related hearing difficulties. We’re conducting an experiment that aims to clarify the causes of age-related hearing difficulties. A more in depth summary of this research project is provided here. Detail about the experiment for people interested in participating are provided below.


The Experiment…

The experiment consists of a battery of auditory, electrophysiological, and cognitive tests. These include:

– Discrimination and identification of speech and non-speech sounds presented through headphones (e.g. detecting which of two sounds has a higher pitch, or identifying a word in a noisy background).

– Tests of cognitive performance (e.g. ability to memorize sequences of digits of increasing length).

– Recordings of electroencephalographic (EEG) responses to sounds. EEG recordings measure the tiny currents generated by the brain through of electrodes placed on the scalp.


Take part in the experiment…

We’re looking for participants between the ages of 30-60 and 60-90 years. People who are not native British English speakers, or who have been diagnosed with a hearing loss at low frequencies (at or below 4000 Hz) cannot take part in the study.
The test battery takes between five and six two-hour sessions to complete. Participants will be compensated £7 per hour for their time.
The tests take place in the hearing lab at Lancaster University. Testing sessions will be arranged at dates and times that best suit each participant.

Please, do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to have further information, or would like to take part in the experiment. Contact information is provided below:

email: s.carcagno@lancaster.ac.uk
Telephone: 01524 594305
Room D40 in Fylde College,
Department of Psychology,
Lancaster University,
Lancaster, LA1 4YF


Thanks for your attention,
Have a wonderful summer break and we look forward to your company next academic year.
Best wishes for myself and the whole Steering Group!

Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)




12-06-16

At the end of a week which has seen the EU ‘Remain’ and ‘Leave’ campaigns reportedly neck and neck, major blood cancer identified as 11 distinct diseases, and the Queen celebrate her official 90th birthday, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Lucia Marquart, Environment and Community Projects Team Member with Lancashire County Council, presented her Lunchtime Lecture 'Beyond the Castle'.

In the lecture, Lucia discussed the recent archaeological exploratory digs which have taken place in the grounds of the Castle and Priory here in Lancaster. She spoke of the discovery of substantial walls, which indicate the existence of an important shore fort going back to the late Roman period, and also the recently uncovered well which promises to hold further important findings, if and when more extensive explorations are carried out. Lucia also looked at how the 'Beyond the Castle' project is working towards further digs and she examined the challenges that must be faced in a project of this sort taking place at this time.

The session was then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees were able to discuss the exciting prospects for the future of Lancaster Castle.

This was an informative session, full of positive ideas and plans for Lancaster’s future as a Heritage town. I intend to post the audio recording of the session online over the next week or so:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…


This coming Wednesday (15th June 2016) James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench, will present his Lunchtime Lecture on 'History of the Magistracy’.


This lecture sets the scene for a series of sessions which will take place next academic year on the subject of Magistracy and how it works in practice. In this session, James begins with a fascinating history of Magistracy.



James’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will have plenty of chance to discuss the lecture content. The lecture will run from 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3. The Research & Discussion Forum will follow around 2.30pm in the same room.


Next academic year (October 2016) we will have three sessions in the same vein, also by James:


Firstly, we intend to have James start the new academic year with an introduction to Magistracy as it stands in the 21st Century.


The second session will take the form of a mock trial, where attendees will get the chance to take part in a trial, including deliberating in light of the evidence.


The final of the three sessions will focus on sentencing, how it works in practice and what constitute the relevant details when sentencing is carried out.


We hope you will be able to join us for all of the sessions. However, if you can only make one or two, don't worry, that’s fine. They will be interesting, fun and highly educational.



05-06-16

At the end of a week which has seen the deadline approach for registration for voting in the EU referendum, the appearance of the plastic £5 note end three centuries of paper money, and much of England experience a welcome heat wave to benefit gardens and allotments, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.



Last week…

Last Wednesday, PhD student Abigail Oyston, presented her Lunchtime Lecture 'Bodies of Value: Examining Infanticide in Victorian Discourses'.

The lecture examined representations of infanticide in Victorian discourses in order to understand the different ways in which babies were valued. Abigail used the term “bodies of value” not only in relation to the body of the dead baby, but also in reference to the implicit social, historical, and cultural value of the texts examined. Abigail juxtaposed medical journal articles, newspaper reports, and fiction to gain a broader understanding of the social and cultural values associated with murdered babies. She considered how factors relating to the baby, the mother, and the writer, such as religion, social class, law, and illegitimacy, affect both the type and the amount of value attached to babies during their brief existence and upon their unnatural deaths. Through close analysis of the discourses, Abigail demonstrated that the act of infanticide can and does reveal a range of values attached to the dead baby, including cultural, political and financial values.

Though in many ways challenging, Abigail’s lecture was extremely engaging and informative regarding the Victorian view of infanticide and infant death. We then followed on from Abigail’s lecture with the Research & Discussion Forum where we looked at the issues raised in the lecture and discussed them in more detail. We wish Abigail the very best with her PhD, and thank her for sharing her excellent research with us.



Next week…

This coming Wednesday (8th June 2016) Lucia Marquart, Environment and Community Projects Team Member with Lancashire County Council, will present here Lunchtime Lecture 'Beyond the Castle'.

In this lecture, Lucia will discuss the recent archaeological exploratory digs which have taken place in the grounds of the Castle/Priory. This is a fascinating time in terms of archeology in Lancaster. She will also look at how the 'Beyond the Castle' project is working towards further digs and a bright future for the Castle and, in turn, Lancaster City as a whole.

This session will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get the chance to discuss the exciting prospects for the future of Lancaster Castle.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

For more information on forthcoming lectures, try our main website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Best wishes, enjoy the sun!





29-05-16

At the end of a week which has seen London Mayor Sadiq Khan slam foreign investors for leaving large numbers of London homes empty, and temperatures in parts of the UK reach a soaring 22 degrees centigrade as Chelsea hosts the 2016 Flower Show, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday Abigail Edmunds, PhD student with the English and Creative Writing Department here at Lancaster University, gave her Lunchtime Lecture 'Revisiting Charles Kingsley's The Water Babies'.

Primarily a scholar of Thomas Miller, in this lecture Abigail spoke at length on Kingsley’s The Water Babies. Abigail explored the material with particular attention paid to the class issues contained therein. She looked at the radical nature of the writing (in the context of the time) and the group were able to gain a better understanding of the Victorian mind set around class constraints.

Abigail then kindly stayed around to take part in the Research & Discussion Forum, where we were able to explore the finer points of the story.

We would like to wish Abigail good luck with her PhD on Thomas Miller and hope she will return to talk with us again, with a focus on his work, when here PhD thesis is complete and submitted.

I will upload the audio recording of the lecture to the website over the coming week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


This week…

This coming Wednesday (1st June 2016), continuing our Victorian Literature theme, Abigail Oyston, PhD Student with the Department of English and Creative Writing at Lancaster University, will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Bodies of Value: Examining Infanticide in Victorian Discourses'.

This lecture examines representations of infanticide in Victorian discourses in order to understand the different ways in which babies were valued. Abigail uses the term “bodies of value” not only in relation to the body of the dead baby, but also in reference to the implicit social, historical, and cultural value of the texts examined. Abigail juxtaposes medical journal articles, newspaper reports, and fiction to gain a broader understanding of the social and cultural values associated with murdered babies.

In her own words…

“I consider how factors relating to the baby, the mother, and the writer, such as religion, social class, law, and illegitimacy, affect both the type and the amount of value attached to babies during their brief existence and upon their unnatural deaths. Through close analysis of the discourses, I demonstrate that the act of infanticide can and does reveal a range of values attached to the dead baby, including cultural, political and financial values.”

This promises to be a very thought provoking lecture and there will be plenty of chance to discuss the content further in the Research & Discussion Forum, which will follow.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

We look forward to your company.


22-05-16

At the end of a week which has seen Tory rebels and Jeremy Corbyn form an unlikely alliance to protect the NHS from transatlantic trade deal, the announcement that tuition fees are to rise above the £9,000 cap, and the BBC announce it is to drop 11,000 recipes from the food section of its website in a bid to save money, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Kamilla Elliot, Prof of Literature and Media, English and Creative Writing here at Lancaster University gave her lecture, 'Victorian Literature and Film'.

Unfortunately, due to a technical issue beyond our control, Kamilla was unable to run her video material with audio. However, despite this hitch, Kamilla was very professional and presented us with a very thought provoking lecture on the work of Dickens, with particular focus on the TV/film representations of his work. Kamilla explored media from different time periods as well as different formats (film/animation), as she highlighted the changes in story and characterisation which have taken place in the screening of Dicken’s work.

I’d like to apologise to group members for the technical hitch on behalf of the CLG, Fylde College and the University. I hope that this didn’t spoil your experience. I’m pleased to say that, judging from the attendees engagement with the subject, most people seem to have got plenty out of the session.

The lecture was then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. This gave everyone a chance to discuss Dicken’s work in general, its strengths and weaknesses.

We also had our AGM where we voted in our committee members for the next 12 months. Thanks to all who took part in this process.

Next week…

This coming Wednesday (25th May 2016) Abigail Edmunds, PhD student with the English and Creative Writing Dept. Lancaster University, will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'The Writings of the Victorian Working-Class Children's Author, Thomas Miller'.

“I am a Victorianist through and through (even though it’s not very trendy these days) and a PHD student with a project focusing on class and Victorian children’s literature, particularly the relationship between middle-class authored texts for children and working-class authored texts for children. The project has led to me focusing specifically on the works of the prolific working-class author Thomas Miller (1807-74). My initial undergraduate studies took me to Leeds (back in the day) before moving to Lancaster to undertake Masters and PHD studies. Something of an academic magpie by nature, my other academic interests include mechanisation in literature, early cyborgs and working- class juvenilia. I have in the past given papers on ‘Programmed femininity’ in late Victorian Science Fiction and the cultural etymology of Trolling. This latest magpie enterprise sees me revisiting Charles Kingsley’s The Water Babies alongside a consideration of modern and Neo Victorian equivalents.”

Abigail’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will be able to continue the discussion around the themes of the lecture.



15-05-16


At the end of a week which has seen proceedings get underway into possible financial irregularities in the election campaign, thousands evacuated when a 500lb ww2 bomb was found in Bath, and a 32ft high doorway in the form of a bare backside in the running for this year’s Turner prize, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, to mark Dying Matters Awareness Week, we had a session on DIY funerals given by Gail Capstick. Gail gave us a lot of information around alternatives to the usual, mainstream funeral. Gail looked at alternative caskets, as well as alternative options for ceremonies. This was a useful session which opened up a lot of possibilities that most of us were totally unaware of.

Gail’s session was followed by a session given by Janet Ross and Esther Nimmo. The session looked at the concept of pre-planning for end of life, with particular attention to refusal of treatment and the new online form which allows us all to make certain decisions at this stage which will, hopefully, benefit us later on. This is an aspect of forward planning which, as life expectancy has increased, has become an important, if controversial, issue.

Both sessions were extremely interesting and informative. I would like to thank all those involved for their excellent contributions. I will upload these to the website over the next few days:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (18th May 2016) Professor Kamilla Elliot, Professor of Literature and Media with the English and Creative Writing Department at Lancaster University will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Victorian Literature and Film'.

Kamila grew up in the UK, moving to the US after A levels. She received her B.A. in Mass Communications and Theatre from the University of Colorado in 1980 and pursued postgraduate studies in film at Boston University from 1981-82. After working in elder care and health research, she returned to academia in 1989, earning an A.L.M. degree through Harvard's adult education programme in 1991. From there, she entered Harvard University, where she completed a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and Language in 1996. She taught Victorian studies and interdisciplinary literature/film studies at the University of California at Berkeley from 1996-2004. During that time she published research on literature and film, including Rethinking the Novel/Film Debate (Cambridge UP, 2003).

Following on from Kamilla’s lecture, we will have the Research & Discussion Forum, which will give group members a chance to continue further with themes raised during the lecture.

For further information on forthcoming lectures, why not visit our main website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

We hope you can join us,



08-05-16

At the end of a week that has seen British voters go to the polls to elect local government, City Mayors and Police & Crime Commissioners, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last week Professor Stephen Wildman, Director of the Ruskin Library and Research Centre here at Lancaster University presented his Lunchtime Lecture, 'John Ruskin: His Life in Pictures'.

Stephen spoke on the life and times of John Ruskin, touching on the social theory which, through his writings, made him such a compelling and charismatic character to Victorian society. Stephen used a range of images to outline the main events and concerns in Ruskin’s life. Particular emphasis was placed on his connections with other influential artists such as Turner and the Pre-Raphaelites.

If you have not visited the Ruskin Library/ Research Centre here on campus, I would highly recommend it. The Centre is open daily and admission to the exhibition space is free. The current exhibition, 'Power of the Hills: Ruskin’s Mountains', runs till 23rd September 2016.

I will post the audio recording of Stephen’s lecture later in the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Next week…

This coming Wednesday (11th May 2016) as part of ‘Dying Matters Week’, Gail Capstick, Director of LESS will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Sustainable Approaches to Funerals'.

Gail has a background in teaching and housing. She worked for 14 years as a business studies teacher, ten of which were as head of department. She worked in universities for two and a half years, teaching for a year and setting up a service user and carer project.

Gail is a member of some voluntary groups in the area. With a number of others and an academic from Lancaster University a Peer Education group was formed which began to look at expressing wishes and preferences for end of life. The group produced a document to be used in planning for wishes and preferences in end of life. Workshops were done with members of the public and professionals talking about the contents of the portfolio and a presentation was done at a PCT conference. The portfolio document has been well received.

The group also ran six afternoon workshops connected with aspects of death and dying and preparation for end of life. The work of the group has been the subject of an academic paper by Katherine Froggatt at the University of Lancaster and a chapter in a book.

Whilst the group has not been active in this type of work for a while Gail has continued to work with others in respect to practices around death and dying in particular areas, two of these being the financial costs of bereavement and the other the environmental costs of bereavement.

In this lecture, Gail will focus on these areas and will question some of the funeral practices common in this country and how people can, if they wish, arrange things differently either for their own funeral or that of others, without incurring such financial cost to themselves or to the environment.


Gail’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum led by group member Janet Ross, who will run an advanced planning demo. For those of us who feel it important to make our decisions and put our plans in place now for the end of our life, this is an ideal opportunity to look at what is possible and how we might all take some control, giving us peace of mind.


Other news…

Dying Matter Week sees a number of interesting events taking place such as:

Radio Lancashire will Interview CLG group member Janet Ross on Monday 9th May at 7.25am.
They are also planning to do an item each day in the breakfast programme and the drive time slots.

Tuesday 10th May 10-4. The International Observatory on End of Life Care are running a Shop front event in St Nicolas Arcade with a display of materials and ideas for getting conversations going and expressing wishes about End of Life care and treatment.

Wednesday 11th May is our CLG lecture and advanced planning demonstration as outlined above.

Thursday 12th May Reverend Ian Dewar, Chaplain at Lancaster Hospital, is running a Death Cafe 10-12 at Storey Institute.

Thursday 12th May at the Friends Meeting House in Lancaster, there is an event concerning ‘Financial Costs of Bereavement’. Speakers include a solicitor, a Quaker campaigner and representative from the Transition City Group.

Friday 13th May 2-4, Lancaster and Morecambe U3A are hosting a Special Lecture:
‘What does the mental capacity Act mean for you?’ this event will also include an Introduction to Advance Panning with Janet Ross.

See the Dying Matters Website for details and further information:
http://www.dyingmatters.org/



01-05-16

At the end of a week which has seen reports claiming that both sides of the EU referendum debate are neck and neck, the Hillsborough enquiry come to an end after 27 years, and the media question whether the new Dyson Supersonic hairdryer is really a haircare revolution, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday Dr. Mary Turner spoke on the subject of palliative care in prisons. As life expectancy becomes greater, and later life illnesses such as dementia become more of an issue, we are faced with the need for palliative care in many settings, including prisons. Mary's research expertise is in palliative and end of life care, and for the past 7 years she has undertaken research in a range of care settings. In her lecture, Mary explored the research she has undertaken in this area, exploring the challenges this poses to the prison system, the health service and more.

We then followed the lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum where we were able to discuss such issues in greater detail. This proved to be an interesting area of research, which many of us had not given much thought to before.

Next week…

This coming Wednesday (4th May 2016) Professor Stephen Wildman, Director of the Ruskin Library and Research Centre here at Lancaster University, will present his Lunchtime Lecture, 'John Ruskin: His Life in Pictures'.

Many of you will now know Stephen from previous lectures he has given to the group and also from his guided tours of exhibitions at the Ruskin Library. In this lecture, Stephen will use less familiar, along with well-known, images to outline the main events and concerns in Ruskin’s life, with particular emphasis on his connections with artists such as Turner and the Pre-Raphaelites. His own drawings will include several from the collection held in the Ruskin Library.

We are very grateful to Stephen for his continued support for our programme, and we welcome him back to talk with us about further aspects of Ruskin's work. If you have not visited the Ruskin Library/ Research Centre (the white, oval building by the roundabout on campus) I would highly recommend it.
The staff present 3 exhibitions per year, one per term, and the quality of the exhibitions is very high. Focus is on the work of Ruskin, his contemporaries and recent artists who are strongly influenced by his artwork, theories and writings. The Centre is open daily and admission to the exhibition space is free.

For more information, visit their website:
http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/users/ruskinlib/

Following on from the lecture, there will be plenty of chance to further discuss the content in the Research & Discussion Forum.


Other news…

Our Annual General Meeting is coming up soon. It will take place on Wednesday 18th May at 2:30 (between the lecture and the discussion). All CLG group members and lecture/discussion attendees are welcome to attend.

To mark Dying Matters Week, Transition City Lancaster will host a talk…

Dying Matters: The Financial Costs of Bereavement
May 12 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Friends Meeting House
Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TX

Gary Rycroft, a local solicitor at Joseph A Jones and Co. will present information about the financial costs of bereavement.

Heather Kennedy of Quaker Social Action will speak about the Fair Funerals Campaign which aims to influence government and industry policy and raise public awareness. Heather will also give information about Down to Earth, a practical advice project for people on low incomes struggling with funeral costs.

Gail Capstick of Transition City Lancaster will present information as to local costs and different choices that can be made by those wishing to plan a funeral in the local area. Information will be available with details of useful websites and telephone numbers.

For more information, please visit their website:
http://transitioncitylancaster.org/event/dying-matters-the-financial-costs-of-bereavement/


24-04-16


At the end of a week which has seen the Queen celebrate her 90th birthday, the UK say goodbye to one of our finest comedians, Victoria Wood, and the world say goodbye to one of our finest contemporary musicians, Prince, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday , Dr Penny Foulds, Research Fellow with the Faculty of Health and Medicine here at Lancaster University, presented her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Defying Dementia: Compound to Clinic'.

Penny, who recently founded the ‘Defying Dementia’ campaign to raise funds and awareness of research into neurodegenerative diseases, discussed her current research with particular focus on the new compound which Lancaster University has developed to deal with dementia. Penny expertly described the workings of the potential new drug, and how it is able to prevent dementia from taking hold. This was a great opening lecture for the term which provided us with a positive glimpse into the future.

The lecture was then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where group members were able to continue exploring themes that were raised in the lecture.


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (27th April 2016) Dr Mary Turner, Research Fellow with the International Observatory of End of Life Care here at Lancaster University will give her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Caring for End of Lifers: Palliative Care in a Prison Environment'.

Mary’s main interest is in palliative care in prisons and in how equitable care can be provided in this marginalised setting. Older prisoners are the fastest growing section of the prison population, and increasing numbers of prisoners with disabilities and life-limiting conditions are requiring palliative care. Prison staff face particular challenges in delivering round the clock care, managing symptoms and supporting family members in a setting where security is of paramount importance. Mary will explore these themes during the lecture.

Mary’s lecture will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get the chance to explore the themes further.


Other news…

I would like to inform you of a Ruskin seminar which is taking place next month…

‘No Wealth But Life’
Andrew Hill (Financial Times, Ruskin Foundation)
5th May, 5pm-6.30pm, Bowland North Seminar Room.
Including wine reception.
Enquiries: Jen Shepherd, Ruskin Library – j.m.shepherd@lancaster.ac.uk




17-04-16


Hello,

I hope you've had a good break over the Easter period and are as excited as we in the Steering Group are to start the new term.

This term starts on Wednesday 20th April 2016 for the Continuing Learning Group and the main lecture themes are life sciences, history and sustainability.

Our first Lunchtime Lecture will be given by Dr Penny Foulds, Research Fellow with the Faculty of Health and Medicine here at Lancaster University. The subject will be: 'Defying Dementia: Compound to Clinic'.

You may recall Penny from lectures she has given in the past, the last one being around 5 years ago. Penny recently founded the ‘Defying Dementia’ campaign, to raise funds and awareness of research into neurodegenerative diseases at Lancaster University, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Motor Neurone Disease. In this opening lecture of the summer term, Penny will discuss her current research and how we can all play our part towards creating a more positive future in terms of dementia.

We will follow Penny’s lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum. This part of the afternoon gives all attendees a chance to look further into the subject and explore points raised during the lecture. This is a chance to work with what you have learned and to apply that learning towards a better understanding of the subject matter. It is also a very sociable part of our day when we are able to get to know each other better.

The Lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm (as last term) and will be followed in the same room by the Research & Discussion Forum, which will run till around 3.45pm.

For further details of lectures this term, visit our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Thanks for your attention. We look forward to your company.

Best wishes.

Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)


13-03-16

Hello,

At the end of a week which has seen the British Government begin to devour itself in relation to Europe, the world’s biggest dog show, Crufts, celebrate its 125th anniversary and the nation breathe a sigh of relief at the news that ginger nut biscuits are returning to our shops after the disruption of the floods, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last Week…

Last Wednesday, Feranita Feranita, a PhD student with Lancaster University Management School spoke to us about 'Challenges of Forming International Research & Development Alliances'.

Feranita focused on a unique programme: the Lancaster China Catalyst Programme (LCCP). This is a 2-year stage-based programme run by Lancaster University that aims at helping UK small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to set up research & development alliances with Chinese organisations. Using the research & development alliances created by 6 of the UK companies with their Chinese partners participating to the programme as case studies, Feranita uncovered the challenges that UK SMEs face at the initial formation stage with Chinese organisations including lack of understanding of the legal system, intellectual property protection issues, language and cultural differences.

After the lecture we took part in the Research & Discussion Forum. This was a great chance for us to look at the many and varied issues raised during Feranita’s talk. Particular focus was given to the cultural differences and the changing status regarding intellectual property issues.


Next Week…

This coming Wednesday (16th March 2016) Dr Vittorio Tantucci, Lecturer with the Department of Linguistics and English Language will present his Lunchtime Lecture on the 'Chinese Philosophy of Time'.

Many aspects of Vittorio's research are centred on Mandarin Chinese and other Sinitic languages addressed from a typological or intercultural-pragmatic point of view.

The lecture will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where we will have a chance to discuss further the issues raised and reflect on this academic term as a whole.

This lecture marks the last of our 3 Lunchtime Lectures focused on Chinese culture and philosophy and our final Lunchtime Lecture of this Lent term. I’m sure you’ll agree, it has been a particularly fascinating series of lectures, offering great insights into both local and international issues.

We in the Steering Group, would like to thank you for taking part this term, to whatever degree you have taken part. All interest has been appreciated (great and small) and it has been a pleasure presenting such thought-provoking sessions.

The Research & Discussion Forum has also been very stimulating recently. Many thanks to all who have contributed to those.

As we have mentioned previously, three of our Steering Group members are leaving this academic year and we are looking for new volunteers so, if you feel you would like to get involved in the planning and presenting of the programme, please do not hesitate to drop us a line at seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk.

We return to start the new term on Wednesday 20th April 2016 and lectures will focus on Life-Sciences, History and Economics. I will be adding details to the website over the coming weeks so please take a look:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Have a good break over the Easter period.
We look forward to your involvement in the new term.

Best wishes,

Dave & the whole CLG Steering Group


06-03-16

At the end of a week when we celebrated Mother’s Day across the country, Storm Jake brought snow and gales to the North of England and Fourteen men were convicted for a series of raids on British museums in which they attempted to steal precious Chinese and rhino horn artefacts, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last Week…

Last Wednesday Professor Sarah Zhang visited us from the Lancaster Confucius Centre to tell us about the cultural background of the Chinese language. We were able to see just how the written language has evolved from its earliest days around five and a half thousand years ago. We were introduced to the very earliest recorded script, known as Oracle Bone Script and were able to compare it to the script in common usage today. We learned how similar these scripts are despite being thousands of years apart. We also learned how the Chinese dialects, though quite different when spoken, are the same in written form. We were fully able to appreciate the ideogrammatic nature of the language and discussed that challenges of operating such a complex language in the digital world.

If you would like to hear the lecture, I will be posting it online over the coming week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

We then followed on from the lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum, where we were able to discuss issues raised in this fascinating lecture and built on them.

Next Week…


This coming Wednesday (9th March 2016) Feranita Feranita of Lancaster University Management School will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Challenges of Forming International Research & Development Alliances'.

Born in Indonesia, educated in Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, Canada, and Spain, Feranita is currently pursuing her PhD degree at Lancaster University. In this lecture she will focus on a unique programme: the Lancaster China Catalyst Programme (LCCP). LCCP is a 2-year stage-based programme run by Lancaster University that aims at helping UK SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) to set up and develop research & development alliances with Chinese organisations. Using the programme as a research setting and the alliances created by 6 of the UK companies with their Chinese partners participating to the programme as case studies, Feranita seeks to uncover the challenges that UK SMEs face at the initial formation stage of research & development alliance with Chinese organisations. In general, the challenges identified by existing research on forming research & development alliances in China include lack of understanding the legal system, IP protection issue, language, and cultural differences.

Feranita’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get plenty of chance to discuss further the issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

We hope you can join us!


28-02-16


At the end of a week that has seen more than half of England's acute care trusts claim they should get the same tax relief as charities, a London woman sue a pub for £4.2m after tripping over a rope in its beer garden, and the lines drawn between the stayers and the leavers for the forthcoming EU referendum, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last Week…

Last Wednesday, we were visited by two representatives from Costain who told us all about the new M6-Heysham link road, which is currently under construction. We heard about the various challenges which have been addressed throughout the project, from construction difficulties to wildlife concerns via aesthetic requirements. This project is having a big impact on all residents and visitors in the Lancaster, Morecambe and Heysham area and will no doubt change the way we live our lives. The talk attracted a large number of attendees who eagerly listened. Concerns were voiced and hopes for the future were discussed. Costain hope to have the road open by the summer of this year.

I will post some video material about the project online over the coming week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Following the road talk, we used the Research & Discussion Forum slot to discuss the future of the CLG programme. As I mentioned last week, we are losing three steering group members this year so are looking for more people to get involved in the organizational side of the programme. This can be in any number of ways, from minute taking to securing lecturers for future Lunchtime Lectures. All offers of help are appreciated. As you know we are a volunteer group who rely on our members to make things happen. So, if you would like to join our 6 strong team and contribute something towards the process, however large or small, please drop us a line. WE are always pleased to welcome new Steering Group members.


Next Week…

This coming Wednesday (2nd March 2016) Prof Sarah Zhang, Chinese Director of the Lancaster Confucius Institute and Professor of South China University of Technology, will present her Lunchtime Lecture ‘Cultural Background of the Chinese Language’.

Professor Sarah Fengchun Zhang is from Lancaster's partner University, South China University of Technology. She received her Master’s degree there in applied linguistics. Her research interests are teaching English as a second language, testing, translation and textbook compilation. As editor or associate editor she has compiled 4 dictionaries, 20 textbooks for college students and hosted a couple of research projects on testing and English language teaching in her home University. She has published over 5 papers on translation and cross-cultural communication.

She loves teaching and culture. As the co-director of Lancaster University Confucius Institute (LUCI), she is dedicating herself to the Institute’s programmes of Mandarin teaching and culture exchange.

Sarah’s lecture will be followed by the Research and discussion forum where attendees will be able to explore further the themes of the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

For more information on this and other coming lectures, please visit our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures



Other News…

Lancaster Royal Institute of Philosophy will present a number of short talks and discussions during March. They take place in the Gallery at the Dukes Theatre, Moor Lane, Lancaster.
These are free events and all are welcome.

Thursday 3rd March, 7-8pm – Dr. Sam Clark (Lancaster)
‘Innocence to Experience: Siegfried Sassoon and human life in time’

“In this talk I use the soldier-poet Siegfried Sassoon's account of his life, from pre-war innocence to the experience of fighting in the trenches, to uncover and describe three ethical features of human life in time: temporal shape, transformative experience, and the incompatibility of military and domestic forms of life.”



Thursday 10th March, 7-8pm – Dr. Rob Lawlor (Leeds)
‘Climate Change and Responsibility: combining history and ethics’

“This presentation will focus on the question of whose responsibility it should be to address climate change, focusing in particular on 4 groups: the general public, the engineering profession, large corporations, and the government. My background is in moral philosophy, but my arguments will also draw on historical perspectives, particularly drawing on the history of rationing in the two world wars, the history of slavery (and the abolition of slavery), and the medical profession’s development of the Declaration of Helsinki.”


Thursday 17th March, 7-8pm – Dr. Ian Kidd (Nottingham)
‘Can Illness Make Me a Better Person?

“I am assistant professor at Nottingham Philosophy (since January 2016) and previously Addison Wheeler Fellow at Durham Philosophy and lecturer in philosophy of religion at Leeds. I work in epistemology and the philosophies of medicine, religion, and science. My research spans the analytic, phenomenological, and Asian philosophical traditions.”





21-02-16


At the end of a week that has seen David Cameron return from EU talks with a new set of terms designed to persuade the population of the UK of the advantages of staying in Europe, Judges rule that the Joint Enterprise Law has been misinterpreted for 30 years, and J K Rowling announces a Harry Potter play to make its stage debut in July, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Richard Trevitt, from the Lancaster Canal Trust, visited us to talk about our wonderful canal, its history and the possibilities the future may hold. We heard about the birth of this historic transport route and were introduced to some of the characters who made it a reality. Richard showed us some of the architectural features which grace the 40 or so miles of the canal, including Rennie’s handsome aqueduct, opened in 1797.

We also looked at the project which aims to coordinate the restoration of the ‘Northern Reaches’ and saw some of the recent damage which has occurred due to the extreme weather and localised flooding. Richard explained to us that, though still hopeful regarding the restoration and reopening of the ‘Northern Reaches’, there is a recognition that the recent flood damage has impacted on this programme quite considerably.

I will aim to put the audio recording of the lecture online over the next week. However, as this was a very image heavy lecture, I am looking into the possibility of also posting Richard’s PowerPoint presentation if copyright allows. If this is not possible, then I hope to post some of the key images used in the talk.

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

We followed on after the talk, not with a Research & Discussion Forum as I wrongly stated in last week’s CLG News, but with a guided tour around the University Library by Lynne Pickles and her colleague. This followed on from the talk we had a couple of weeks back, and gave group members a great chance to experience the huge changes first hand. The general feeling was that the refurbishment has been a success and that was reinforced by the many studious young people dotted all around the building, deeply focused on their work.


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (24th February 2016) Antony Crowley of Costain Engineering will visit to talk with us about 'The Construction and Challenges of the M6-Heysham Link Road'.

In this talk, Antony will take us through the link road construction process and discuss the challenges Costain have encountered along the way. Antony has worked with Costain as a community relations officer for six and a half years now. Prior to taking this post, he worked as a police officer in Greater Manchester for thirty one years.


Other News…

Change is coming to the CLG. For various reasons, several members have decided to leave the Steering Group. Irene, who has undertaken the secretarial role for the past 6 years, has already finished. Jean, who has put together the programme of lectures for this year in collaboration with John Marshall, is leaving with effect from the end of this term. Jill has also decided to finish with effect from the end of the summer term. This creates an opportunity for new people to get involved in the Steering Group to manage the CLG programme. So if you value what is on offer, please think about volunteering and get involved. In order to consider the future direction of the CLG, we intend to use the Research & Discussion Forum this coming Wednesday (February 24th) to facilitate a discussion around what members of the CLG would like to see in the future, so we hope you will attend. If you are unable to attend, you might like to email any thoughts and ideas to us at seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk




14-02-16


At the end of a week that has seen the Independent newspaper announce the end of its printed edition in favour of a purely online version, an announcement that companies failing to provide equal pay will be named and shamed under the Government's new league table-style rankings, and Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, impose new contract conditions on junior doctors despite fierce opposition, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday Alan Beattie gave his talk on Survivors’ Poetry. This talk had been scheduled for the end of last term but was postponed due to the power cuts caused by extensive flooding.

Alan took us through a wide variety of poetry born out of, and focused around, mental health issues. We looked at how poetry has been able to give a voice to those with a burning need to be understood and how it can provide the perfect mode of expression for complex personal feelings. Survivors’ Poetry exists to help all survivors combat the effects of mental distress in the most creative and personally empowering ways possible, and this was very evident in the poems we looked at. Alan expertly read a number of poems to us. These ranged from the darkest and most despairing to the light-hearted and irreverent.

We followed on from the lecture with the Research and Discussion Forum, where we discussed issues raised in the session and looked at some original, as yet unpublished, poems.

The two sessions were deeply moving and, in many ways, uplifting. We were able to gain a greater understanding of mental illness and the human condition. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Alan for his excellent input and also thank group members who shared very personal thoughts, ideas and details.

I will be posting the audio recording of the lecture part of the afternoon online during the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (17th February 2016) Richard Trevitt of Lancaster Canal Trust will present his Lunchtime Lecture on ‘The History of the Lancaster Canal'.

Richard Trevitt has had a lifelong fascination for canals, with many boating holidays. An interest in canal industrial archaeology and a career in maritime civil engineering led to an involvement with the local canal, its preservation and restoration. The presentation will cover various aspects of the development of the canal, its commercial history, the decline of its northern reaches and the move towards its restoration.

Following on from Richard’s talk, there will be no Research & Discussion Forum. Instead there will be a guided tour around the University Library.

Events will begin in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 at 1pm.



For more information on future Lunchtime Lectures, take a look here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures


Thanks, have a good week!



07-02-16


At the end of a week that has seen the debate around Britain’s inclusion in Europe step up a notch, the possibility of a Sunday trading overhaul come back on the table, and a natural phenomenon known as a circumhorizontal arc create colourful displays in the sky over the North of England, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, David Waines, Emeritus Professor with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion visited us to talk about the travels of the 14th century writer, Ibn Battuta.

‘Ibn Battuta was, without doubt, one of the world's truly great travellers. Born in 14th century Morocco, and a contemporary of Marco Polo, Ibn Battuta has left us an account in his own words of his remarkable journeys throughout the Islamic world and beyond: journeys punctuated by adventure and peril, and stretching from his home in Tangiers to Zaytun in faraway China. Whether sojourning in Delhi and the Maldives, wandering through the mazy streets of Cairo and Damascus, or contesting with pirates and shipwreck, the indefatigable Ibn Battuta brings to vivid life a medieval world brimming with marvel and mystery. ‘

If you would like to know more about this remarkable historic figure and his fascinating travels, there are a number of excellent books available on the subject, including David Waines’ own book, ‘The Odyssey of Ibn Battuta: Uncommon Tales of a Medieval Adventurer’ available from all good bookshops and Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle versions.


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (10th February 2016) Professor Alan Beattie, formerly of the Department of English and Creative Writing here at Lancaster University, will present his Lunchtime Lecture, 'Writing Bare Lives and Liquid Times? - Poetry written by survivors of psychiatry'

‘In so-called Survivors’ Poetry – poems written about their own experience by people who have undergone psychiatric treatment - metaphors of mobility are prominent as ways of capturing elusive aspects of the experience of mental distress (flight, escape, wandering, journeys to recovery, etc.). Are activists within the mad movement casualties of the new ‘liquid times’ or are they its cartographers? What might we learn from the work of survivor-poets who create fragmented, ‘palimpsest’ identities that resist the ‘forced choreographies’ of 21st century life?

Alan has 40 years of experience as NHS professional, university teacher and researcher, and community activist at local and national levels, and has also worked in theatre, and writes plays and poetry. His current preoccupation is ‘how to write a world in transition’ – what forms of textual innovation can help to capture the bare lives and liquid times of the 21st century?’

NOTE: This lecture is rescheduled from the end of last term due to the power cuts which forced an early term break.

The lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where group members will bet the chance to discuss further issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

For more information on this and other lectures, visit here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures






31-01-16


At the end of a week that has seen a young British man save money travelling between Sheffield and Essex by introducing a visit to the Brandenburg Gate into his travel plans, MPs face the prospect of no booze at work as plans for refurbishment of the Palace of Westminster go ahead, and hundreds of hopefuls contacted the National Lottery to say they correctly chose the winning six numbers in the recent £66m draw but either lost or damaged their tickets, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last week Jenny Brine and Lyne Pickles visited us from the Lancaster University Library to tell us the full story of the recent refurbishment.

We learned how the library has changed and grown from its humble beginnings occupying the old workshops of Shrigley and Hunt on Castle Hill, in the centre of the town. Designed in 1964 by Tom Mellor and Partners, The original on-campus Library building (The East Building) had its first phase opening in September 1966, the second in July 1968 and the third in January 1971. The Library was extended in 1997 with the addition of The West Building which houses the large reading room.

The refurbishment, at a cost of £15 million, has seen facilities brought right up to date with the Library now offering a flexible, inspiring, technology-enabled environment with a range of individual and group work spaces to support different learning styles. The building, which utilises white American oak wood throughout, has been redesigned to maximise natural light and offers a significant increase in power and data provision. The Library is the first refurbishment project on campus to target a BREEAM Excellent standard, a measure of the building's environmental performance and impact….and yes, it still has books.

We encourage all our group members and lecture attendees to make good use of the new facilities. You are welcome to read the books and enjoy the space any time of the day or night (the library is open 24/7). However, if you wish to borrow books, there is a yearly charge for CLG members. Any of the desk staff will be happy to help with any queries you may have.

Next Week…

This coming Wednesday (3rd February 2016) David Waines, Emeritus Professor with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion here at Lancaster University, will give his Lunchtime Lecture, 'Worldly Desire and Heavenly Hope: The Travels of Ibn Battuta, 14th Century'.

"There have been a number of approaches to this fascinating character by a number of authors... One of the difficulties I found in writing the book was selecting an interesting approach that had not been covered by my predecessors. The solution that suggested itself was to cover topics that seemed of real interest to Ibn Battuta himself, owing to the amount of space he devoted to certain subjects in the course of his multi-volumed account of 30 years travel. Thus I have decided to cover his fascination with food and codes of hospitality he encountered in his travels. Next, there is the (perhaps) obvious subject of saints and sinners, miracles and marvels. And finally, but by no means least in importance: his views of "the other", identification of which or whom will be disclosed on the day."

David’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where group members will be able to explore further issues raised in the lecture.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

More information can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures



24-01-16


At the end of a week that has seen the finger pointed at Russian President Vladimir Putin over the murder of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko in London, reports state that violent crime in the UK is up 37 per cent - the largest jump in over a decade, and Britain facing a ginger nut shortage as a result of the recent floods, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr Giovanni Bettini spoke with us on the issue of mass migration, with particular focus on the likely effects of climate change on population movement. Giovanni explored the media’s treatment of the recent migration issues in Europe as a ‘crisis’ which requires a solution and instead looked at the likelihood of further, climate driven, migration and the adaptation needed to adjust and accommodate such events in the future, this being the only actual solution open to Europe. Giovanni explored how the issue has been framed in a way that is counterproductive and problematic. He explored the possible extent the issue of future climate change migration might present and demonstrated how this is likely to dwarf the issue of war migration which we are currently facing.

Giovanni’s lecture was then followed by an interesting Research & Discussion Forum where group members discussed the broad range of migration issues and the adaptation needed throughout Europe to move forward successfully.

Next week…

As you may know, Lancaster University has recently undergone extensive refurbishment of its on-campus library facilities. This coming Wednesday (27th January 2016) Academic Liaison Librarian for Content, Jenny Brine and Library Assistant with Operations and Services, Lynne Pickles will visit us to talk about all the changes that have taken place and to encourage group members to make good use of the facilities available. The University Library is a fantastic resource, offering a wealth of information and knowledge to all CLG attendees. The recent changes have made it even more so. Come along to Jenny and Lynne’s talk, it will help you to get to grips with this outstanding resource which is there for our benefit.

Following on from the library talk, we will have the usual Research & Discussion Forum. Generally, this part of the day is filled with discussion around the content of the lecture. This week we are asking attendees ‘what is on your mind?’ What burning questions do you have? What do you find interesting/inspiring/frustrating in current affairs right now? What are your hopes and fears? This is a chance for you to drive this part of the day. If you have something to discuss, let’s discuss it.

Both the library talk and the Research & Discussion Forum will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm. More information can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Have a good week.



17-01-16


At the end of a week when the world said goodbye to rock legend and artist David Bowie, three men were convicted for their involvement in the Hatton Garden jewellery heist, and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s fans raised over £2,000 to buy him his dream bike, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr Garrath Williams of the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, presented his lecture 'Politics of Obesity'.

Garrath spoke about the economic and political forces surrounding the rapid rise of obesity rates in developed societies. He explored the key factors that have led to this rise, and how we might think about ways to address it. His main focus was on how media and political discussion tend to frame obesity as a matter of individual or parental responsibility. Garrath went on to argue that this framing has been led by commercial interests and has ignored one simple fact: the massive commercial interest in encouraging consumption of processed food and drink, rather than whole foods.

Garrath presented his findings with particular attention payed to how increasingly difficult it has become to achieve positive health and dietary outcomes inside the framework of mainstream, contemporary society, which runs to a very different agenda.

We followed the lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum, where we looked closer at the barriers to healthy living, which we have personally encountered.

I will be putting the audio recording of the lecture online later in the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…


This coming Wednesday (20th January 2016) Dr Giovanni Bettini, Lecturer with Lancaster Environment Centre, will present his Lunchtime Lecture, 'Unsettling Futures: climate change, migration, and the immobility of climate politics'.

The focus of Giovanni’s work is on the genealogy and political effects of discourses on climate change, population, and international development, with a particular interest in the connections between climate change, adaptation and mobility.

‘The message that climate science and current emission trajectories are sending is clear: limiting global warming to 2°C is more and more an unlikely prospect. This predicament is hard to apprehend also because a 3 or 4 °C warmer planet is a largely unknown place, where socioecological spaces and relations look different. Visualizing the impacts of such severe climate change – and of our responses to it – requires a radical imaginative effort.’

Giovanni’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. No doubt there will be a large number of issues raised which warrant further discussion, and the Forum will provide the ideal chance for this.

Other News…

You may recall that in 2015 we hosted a half day, conference-style event at Lancaster Library which was entitled ‘Medicine, Memory and Melancholy’. This was very successful and we intend to host a second event along the same lines, though with a different theme, on May the 4th (increasingly referred to as ‘Star Wars Day’….think about it) of this year. The theme is currently being settled, but it looks like it will focus on education/learning. So, please keep the date for your diary as we would like our regular CLG News readers and lecture attendees to attend if they wish. May the 4th (be with you…there you have it, Star Wars Day!)

Thanks for your attention, have a good week.






10-01-16


Hello,

I would like to start by saying that we in the CLG Steering Group hope you’ve had a good break over the Christmas and New Year period and are ready for the forthcoming term. This term promises to be extremely interesting, packed with lots of stimulating lectures in a broad range of subjects.

Our new term begins this coming Wednesday (13th January 2016) with Dr. Garrath Williams, Senior Lecturer with the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion here at Lancaster University. He will present his lecture 'Politics of Obesity'.
Garrath works on questions of moral and political responsibility and in applied ethics. For the past eight years, he has been involved in two large European research projects on childhood obesity (see www.ifamily.eu ). With K Voigt and S Nicholls, he wrote Childhood Obesity: Ethical and Policy Issues (OUP, 2014).
Garrath will talk about the economic and political forces surrounding the rapid rise of obesity rates in developed societies. What are the key factors that have led to this rise, and how should we think about ways to address this rise? His main theme will be how media and political discussion tend to frame obesity as a matter of individual or parental responsibility. Garrath will argue that this framing has been led by commercial interests and ignores one simple fact: the massive commercial interest in encouraging consumption of processed food and drink, rather than whole foods.

You may remember Garrath's previous visit to talk with us about the life and politics of Hannah Arendt a couple of years back. We are very pleased to welcome him again and look forward to his lecture, the opening lecture of 2016.


Garrath’s talk will be followed the Research and Discussion Forum, where group members will have plenty of chance to explore further many of the issues raised.

As with last term, both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm, with the R&DF beginning around 2:45pm.

I am currently populating the website with details of all of this term’s lectures as they are confirmed. As usual, the details will develop over the coming weeks. You can find them here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

We look forward to your company this term.

Best wishes,

Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)




08-12-15


Hello,

At the end of a week which has seen mains electricity in very short supply throughout North Lancashire and Cumbria following record breaking levels of rainfall and devastating floods as a result of Storm Desmond, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward towards the future.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dr Celia Roberts, Senior Lecturer with the Department of Sociology at Lancaster University presented her lecture ‘Puberty in Crisis? A sociological account of contemporary changes to childhood and the timing of sexual development’.

Celia spoke extensively on the fact that puberty is appearing earlier in young people, particularly girls. She looked at possible causes as well as consequences and possible ways we might deal with this change. Celia is the author of three books on sexuality, reproduction and sexual development, including Puberty in Crisis: The Sociology of Early Sexual Development (Cambridge University Press, 2015). Her talk was informative and thought provoking and this meant that the group were able to have a vibrant discussion afterwards in the Research and Discussion Forum.

I intend to upload the audio version of the lecture to our website when I can. With the regular power cuts we are currently experiencing, this may take a while. Please bear with me. Thanks.

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This week…

We were looking forward to bringing you our final lecture of the tearm/year this coming Wednesday. Unfortunately, due to the exceptionally bad weather and consequential disruption to power supplies, Lancaster University has cancelled all lectures in the run up to the Christmas period and advised students to vacate the campus early. We apologise that we are unable to run Professor Alan Beattie’s Lunchtime Lecture at this time. We do, however, plan to reschedule this lecture for sometime in the New Year.

So, this just leaves me to say thank you so much for your attention this term. It has been an excellent term of great lectures and good feedback. The Research and Discussion Forum has gone from strength to strength as we hoped it would. We have enjoyed welcoming new attendees to our events and appreciated the continued company and support of our regular group members.

Lancaster University Lent Term begins on 8th January 2016. Our first lecture will take place on Wednesday 13th January 2016 when Garrath Williams will present his Lunchtime Lecture on ‘The Politics of Obesity’ in the usual venue, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a wonderful festive season and a very happy and prosperous New Year. Thanks again for all your support, it is very much appreciated.

Best wishes from myself and the whole CLG Steering Group!

Dave


29-11-15


At the end of a week which has seen the people of France honour those killed in the recent terrorist attacks, UK Prime Minister David Cameron put forward the case for air strikes on Syria, and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn take a firm stand against possible airstrikes on the grounds that they are likely to worsen the situation, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday Annie Nissen, Lancaster University researcher presented us with her lecture 'The Cinematic Return of the Stage: A Discussion of Frankenstein Adaptations from 1910 and 2011'.

‘The recent cinematic turn to the stage through the National Theatre Live initiative appears to have made a return to the beginnings of film, which at that point was often seen as a form of filmed theatre. In her lecture, Annie discussed the connection of stage and screen at the beginning of the 20th and 21st centuries with the help of two hybrid film-theatre adaptations of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Through these. Annie addressed the significance of the cinematic return to the theatrical stage and the implications this might have for the historical relationship of these two media.’


If you would like to listen to Annie’s lecture, you can do so here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



Next week…

This coming Wednesday (2nd December 2015) Dr Celia Roberts, Senior Lecturer with Department of Sociology, here at Lancaster University will present her lecture ‘Puberty in Crisis? A sociological account of contemporary changes to childhood and the timing of sexual development’.

‘Celia is Co-Director of the Centre for Gender and Women’s Studies and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology. She is the author of three books on sexuality, reproduction and sexual development, including Puberty in Crisis: The Sociology of Early Sexual Development (Cambridge University Press, 2015).’

This will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get the chance to discuss issues raised in the lecture.



Other news…


Lancaster Arts Present:

Phoenix Dance Theatre: Mixed Programme 2015
Works by Christopher Bruce CBE, Caroline Finn and Sharon Watson.
Tue 1st Dec - 20:00 - 22:00
Wed 2nd Dec - 20:00 - 22:00

Mixed Programme 2015 features a double bill by one of the most influential figures in world dance, Christopher Bruce CBE including a brand new work, Shadows created by him especially for Phoenix Dance Theatre and a restaging of Christopher’s energetic study of life in the 1940’s, Shift. Having choreographed works for leading dance companies across the globe, this is the first time that Phoenix will perform any of this renowned choreographer’s work.

The work also features two world premieres Phoenix Artistic Director Sharon Watson follows up her audience favourites Melt (2011) and Repetition of Change (2013) with TearFall, a new piece that builds on her exploration of science through dance using her simultaneously mesmerising and athletic choreography style. The fourth piece is Bloom by exciting new choreographer and New Adventures Choreographer Award winner Caroline Finn whose work often presents darkly comic expressions of life and humanity using her playful, quirky and highly engaging choreographic style.


And…


Winter Words: Walls/Ashworth/Lambert
Wed 2nd Dec - 16:30

Winter Words -readings from Jenn Ashworth, Zoe Lambert and Eoghan Walls
Wine reception from 4.15pm
(This is a Lancaster University's Department of English & Creative Writing event)


And…


Panic Lab: R.I.O.T.
Fri 4th Dec - 20:00 - 21:25

A comic book come to life in martial arts inspired dance theatre.

In a world of blockbuster adaptations and endless reboots, four performers dream of being awesome. Playing superheroes, they are caught in a series of conflicts which are both personal, and intricately political. The ultimate battle between good and evil becomes a struggle for identity and representation, in a story they didn’t choose. Spiced with comic book and action hero references, the epic adventure unfolds through action-packed choreography and projected illustrations.

Suitable for ages 12+, or younger if accompanied by an adult. Contains some strong language and staged violence. The show contains loud noises and bright lights. Commissioned by Dance City, in association with Cambridge Junction, MDI, Unity Theatre. Made at The Place Funded by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.


For more information on all the above events, visit the Lancaster Arts website:
https://www.lancasterarts.org/whats-on


Thanks, have a great week,



22-11-15


At the end of a week which has seen junior doctors preparing to take unprecedented strike action over new contracts, GCHQ intelligence service launch a graffiti advertising campaign to recruit new members and temperatures dramatically plummet around the UK, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Professor Simon Bainbridge of the Department of English & Creative Writing presented his Lunchtime Lecture ‘Wordsworth, War and Waterloo’.

Drawing on the materials included in the Wordsworth Trust’s exhibition to mark the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo, Simon considering Wordsworth’s complex response to the British victory. He showed the group that while best known as a nature poet, Wordsworth can also be understood as a war poet whose career and greatest works were shaped by the age of conflict in which he lived.

Simon’s lecture dealt with both aspects of Wordsworth’s life and the challenges of curating an exhibition with an aim to change the public’s understanding of an artist’s output. Simon did this expertly and opened up the subject to us all for further exploration.

We then went on in the Research and Discussion Forum to discuss this concept of Wordsworth as a war poet, focusing on the changes that took place in his political outlook with regard to the events of the time.

If you would like to listen to the Lecture Lecture, I will be posting it to the website soon:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (25th November 2015) Annie Nissen, a researcher here at Lancaster University, will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'The Cinematic Return of the Stage: A Discussion of Frankenstein Adaptations from 1910 and 2011'

The recent cinematic turn to the stage through the National Theatre Live initiative appears to have made a return to the beginnings of film, which at that point was often seen as a form of filmed theatre. Annie’s lecture will discuss the connection of stage and screen at the beginning of the 20th and 21st centuries with the help of two hybrid film-theatre adaptations of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Through these, Annie aims to address the significance of the cinematic return to the theatrical stage and the implications this might have for the historical relationship of these two media.

Annie’ s main area of interest lies in Adaptation Studies and her research investigates the role of authorship in literature to film adaptations, concentrating on early film history. She completed a BA in Film Studies and English Literature in 2010 and an MA in Literary and Cultural Studies in 2011, both at Lancaster University.

Annie’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will get a chance to discuss issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.



Other News…

Theatre Double Bill: 2 Shows for the Price of 1!!!
A double bill ticket will allow you into both of these shows in the Nuffield Theatre

7.30pm. Figs in Wigs: Show Off

“You’re so vain you probably think this show is about you. But it’s actually about Figs in Wigs – the lowbrow answer to avant-garde. Show Off nosedives deep into our shallow digital existence, goggling at how social media has bred a new form of narcissism.

In a selfie-obsessed effort to tick every box five performers reintroduce themselves as comedians, dancers, visual artists, musicians and circus entertainers. After all, nowadays one trick ponies rarely make the cut.”

"Figs in Wigs prove that silly and whiplash smart go hand in hand. Terrific fun." Lyn Gardner


9.15pm. Jamie Wood: Beating McEnroe

“Bjorn Borg epitomised tennis cool. He was everything Jamie and his brother wanted to be. Then John McEnroe came along and Jamie was beaten, along with Borg. Thirty years of torment and self-questioning later, Jamie is ready to face his greatest opponent. Beating McEnroe is about being a younger brother and a bad loser. It is about competition and control, vitriol and zen. It is about rivalry and love and how they can both better us and destroy us. It is funny, familiar and strangely beautiful.”

For more on these events, visit the Lancaster Arts website:
https://www.lancasterarts.org/whats-on/double-bill-figs-in-wigs-jamie-wood

Have a good week!




15-11-15


At the end of a week which has seen devastating terrorist attacks on the cities of Beirut and Paris, the UK battered by 90 mph winds from Storm Abigail and the welcome return of light in the form of the Hindu festival of Diwali, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Last Wednesday, Ali Hanbury and Cron Cronshaw, PhD students with the Department of Sociology here at Lancaster University, presented us with ‘An Introduction to Trans-Identified Young People’s Experiences’.

In their talk, Ali and Cron introduced the group to a number of issues which affect trans-identified young people. These ranged from aspects of the social, through the biological and touched on the political. Group members were encouraged to try to adopt the mindset of a trans-person and imagine what kind of issues they would face and how they might begin to deal with them. The group looked at the wide variety of trans experiences and biologies that exist and took time to appreciate the problems which can arise when trans people are viewed as a homogeneous group with a single, shared experience. The group found the lecture very engaging and were very comfortable exploring the issues raised.

I will add some youtube video material on this subject to the website during the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (18th November 2015) Professor Simon Bainbridge of the Department of English & Creative Writing at Lancaster University will present his Lunchtime Lecture ‘Wordsworth, War and Waterloo’.

Drawing on materials included in the Wordsworth Trust’s exhibition ‘Wordsworth, War and Waterloo’, this lecture will mark the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo by considering Wordsworth’s complex response to the British victory. It will show that while best known as a nature poet, Wordsworth can also be understood as a war poet whose career and greatest works were shaped by the age of conflict in which he lived.

We will follow on from the lecture with the Research & Discussion Forum, where attendees will have plenty of chance to further explore the issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


Other news…

Lancaster University Theatre Group Presents…
‘The Shadow Box’ at The Nuffield Theatre (on campus)
Nov 19th/20th/21st


‘Exploring the human ability to process tragedy, The Shadow Box by Michael Cristopher delves into the intimate moments between families and lovers of the terminally ill patients Joe, Brian and Felicity.

Performed through promenade, their final days play out in three different cottages on the grounds of a hospital where they are being closely monitored.
This scrutiny into human experience asks what it really means to "cope" with inevitable loss.

Please note that as this performance will be a promenade piece the audience will be required to stand and move about the space. However, there will be chairs available if needed.’

For more information on this performance please visit their website:
https://www.lancasterarts.org/whats-on/lu-theatre-group-the-shadow-box


Also…


Lancaster Arts presents...
Montero & Manchester Camerata

Giovanni Guzzo Director/ Violin
Gabriela Montero Piano

PÄRT Fratres
MOZART Piano Concerto No.14 in E-flat major, K.449
MONTERO Improvisations on audience requests
PIAZZOLA The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires
BRITTEN Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, Op.10

This dynamic programme features Venezuelan-born musicians Gabriela Montero and Giovanni Guzzo, artists whose music brims with energy and colour. Montero who is famed for her extraordinary improvisatory talents, returns by very popular demand to play Mozart’s mighty Piano Concerto No.14 followed by some audience inspired improvisations. The concert also includes the mesmerising Fratres by Arvo Pärt, Paul Desenne’s exotic Two Seasons, performed by the superlative Manchester Camerata.

6.45pm Pre-Concert Talk

For more information on this concert please visit their website:
https://www.lancasterarts.org/whats-on/montero-manchester-camarata


Have a good week,






08-11-15


At the end of a week when Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn faced dissent from his back bench MPs, HMRC came under fire for only answering around half of calls made by taxpayers looking to organise their payments and police and crime commissioners threaten to seek a judicial review over proposed changes to the way police forces are funded in England and Wales, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday, Dawn Stobbart, PhD Student with the Department of English & Creative Writing at Lancaster University gave her Lunchtime Lecture ‘Reading, Watching Playing: Videogames and Narrative’.

Dawn discussed the change in video games, from the simple style of early games such as Tetris and Pacman with their focus on basic geometric solutions to problems and navigation of a modest maze, to the sophistication of modern games which employ complex stories and work more like novels.

Dawn looked at the game ‘Bioshock’, which is not only inspired by the theory of Objectivism that radical author/philosopher Ayn Rand developed and championed in her written work, but features a narrative which functions chiefly as a frightening critique of a society shaped in the image of her political and economic beliefs.

I will be posting the lecture, in audio format, later in the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (11th November 2015 ), Ali Hanbury & Cron Cronshaw, both PhD Students with the Department of Sociology here at Lancaster University will give their Lunchtime Lecture,
'An Introduction to Trans- Identified Young People’s Experiences'

Cron is a second year PhD student, in the department of Sociology, researching the decision-making processes of parents with gender-variant children. Cron is currently doing an ESRC-funded internship with Trans Alliance, an organisation in Brighton, which provides trans awareness training to medical professionals, third sector workers and private businesses.

Ali is a professional youth and community worker with particular interest in anti-discriminatory practice, feminist youth work and sexual health from a pleasure perspective. Ali manages the LGBT centre in Manchester which is the first publicly funded centre of its kind in Europe. Ali’s PhD is funded through the European Research Council and focuses on young women's experiences of the HPV vaccination.

Cron and Ali’s lecture will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where attendees will have plenty of chance to discuss issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

Hope you can make it!




01-11-15


At the end of a week when peace talks, aimed at ending Syria's bloody civil war, get underway in Vienna, the last British person in Guantanamo Bay is released after 13 years without charge or trial and online 'hacktivist' collective ‘Anonymous' announce they will release IDs of up to 1,000 Ku Klux Klan members, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Three people from the National Grid, Amy, Deborah and Gordon, came to speak with us about the ‘North-West Connections Project’. We were expecting Stephen Radford-Hancock, but he was unable to make it due to unforeseen circumstances. The three visitors explained how the project aims to connect the forthcoming Moorside Nuclear Power Station, which will be alongside the existing Sellafield Nuclear Power Station and run by New Gen, to the National Grid.

If you would like to find out more, I will be posting the audio recording of the talk here during the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (4th November 2015) Dawn Stobbart, PhD Student with the Department of English & Creative Writing here at Lancaster University will give her Lunchtime Lecture ‘Reading, Watching Playing: Videogames and Narrative’

Dawn is in the final stages of PhD study here at Lancaster University. She has a B.A. (Hons) in English Literature and a M.A. (Hons) in Contemporary Literature, and is currently focusing on the way that video games function as a carrier for narrative and its role within this medium as part of her study. She has an interest in contemporary literature and especially the way this translates to the videogame. Within videogame studies, she has conducted research into Gothic fiction, Posthuman fiction, folklore, and focused on how video games construct narratives for these genres. Dawn is also interested in contemporary Gothic fiction and is currently exploring Stephen King’s work as a source for academic study.

In this lecture, Dawn will touch on aspects of her topic such as adaptation as well as narrative structure.

Dawn’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where there will be a chance to discuss further some of the issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.


Other news…

Defying Dementia are running a special campus tour on Monday 9th November (as mentioned in a previous CLG News)

‘Our Campus Tours are designed to acquaint you with our friendly campus. The tour begins at 1.30pm in Alexandra Square. Current students will take you on a guided tour of the campus, showing you our award winning student accommodation, social venues, library and a lot more besides! The tour finishes at approximately 2.45pm. After the tour you may wish to visit our state of the art sports centre, located at the entrance to campus. Staff from the Sports Centre will be on hand to show you the facilities and answer any questions you may have about sport at Lancaster.’

Please book if you would like to take part.
http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/campus-tour-9th-november-2015-tickets-15909412481?aff=erellivsim

And finally…

One more reminder that the Roadless Trip is returning to campus on November 5th.
http://www.artsadmin.co.uk/events/3769

If you are on campus for the Roadless Trip, you will also get the chance to see the Lancaster University firework display which also takes place that night. This family-friendly event, run as part of our World at Lancaster programme, will bring together Lancaster’s global community to mark this uniquely British celebration.

Join attendees in Lancaster Square from 5.30pm for brilliant live performances from students and a selection of hot food to keep you warm. The firework finale will start at 7.45pm.

More info can be found here:
http://lusu.co.uk/10680/enjoy-our-spectacular-firework-display/

Don’t miss it!






25-10-15


At the end of a week when the President of the People’s Republic of China, Mr Xi Jinping paid a visit to the UK, one of the major telecommunication companies admitted to having large amounts of customer’s bank details stolen and controversial cuts proposed to tax credit payments threaten relations between the Lords and the Commons, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.


Last week…

Susanna Bleakley of Morecambe Bay Partnership spoke, with great enthusiasm and passion, about the work she does in our region. She explained some of the challenges in working with an area which spans two different counties. She told us all about the new Bay Cycle Way, which is already attracting visitors from afar and she encouraged us all to think what this beautiful bay means to us. We then went on, in the Research & Discussion Forum to discuss the charity, the bay and the joy of having a chance to explore our feelings on this aspect of our environment.

If you missed the lecture, or if you enjoyed it so much you would like to hear it again, I will be posting it to our main website over the coming days:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures


Next week…

This coming Wednesday (28th October 2015), Stephen Radford-Hancock of the National Grid will present the Lunchtime Lecture on 'The North-West Coast Connections Project'.

Stephen’s presentation will aim to enhance understanding of the Energy Challenge facing the country. It will explore this particular Project’s background, the technologies involved, the Development Programme, Engagement with Communities and Stakeholders and the next steps of this considerable undertaking.

The Lunchtime Lecture will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where all attendees will get the chance to discuss further the issues raised.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm onwards.

For more information on Lunchtime Lectures timetabled for this term visit:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures


Other news…

Lancaster Social Work is hosting
@SWBookGroup
Wednesday 4th November at 5pm in Bowland North Seminar Room 23

“We will be discussing Grace and Mary by Melvyn Bragg 'an insightful, moving tale of ageing and our helplessness in the face of dementia'. Dr Lucy Burke from Manchester Metropolitan University, whose current research focuses on the representation of dementia in contemporary literature and cinema is the guest discussant.”

Coffee and cake from 4.30 pm
Please sign up https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/social‐work‐book‐group‐tickets‐18552167031

More information on the blog: http://wp.lancs.ac.uk/social‐work‐book‐club/

Also…

We have traditionally visited the Ruskin Gallery on campus each term to view their exhibitions. They are consistently good and showcase not only the work of John Ruskin, but also the work of associated contemporary artists. This term, with such a packed programme of events, we are struggling to include a visit. So, I would like to bring your attention to the current exhibition so that you might attend it independently if you wish to continue you exploration of Ruskin’s work and the work of his contemporaries.

Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Research Centre presents…

Ever Present Help: Ruskin's Artists

'Ever Present Help: Ruskin's Artists' includes a comprehensive display of the work of Victorian artists, famous and obscure, who assisted Ruskin at different times throughout his life. The Whitehouse Collection holds a wealth of work by artists who worked closely with Ruskin including Albert Goodwin, John Wharlton Bunney, John Everett Millais, TM Rooke, Angelo Alessandri, Arthur Severn, Edward Burne Jones, WG Collingwood and many more.

This wonderful exhibition is packed full of colour and information on Ruskin and his artist helpers.
If you’re a fan don’t miss this exhibition. It runs 5 October - 11 December 2015.




18-10-15

Hello,
At the end of a week when the pros and cons of Trident have come up for debate, items from the Hatton Garden Robbery were discovered hidden in a cemetery and Boris Johnson made the news with a rugby tackle, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…
Construction Project Manager with Dong Energy, Stephen Andrew, visited us to discuss the Walney Extension Wind Turbine Project which, in conjunction with Walney 1 and 2, will be the largest offshore wind farm in the world. Stephen gave a fascinating presentation which clearly demonstrated the advantages of offshore wind farms and their role in our future.

Stephen then kindly stayed around to take part in our Research & Discussion Forum where we explored further the role of wind generators in relation to other forms of power generation.

I have posted some of the company’s video material on the website for you to view:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Next week…

This coming Wednesday (21st October 2015), Susannah Bleakley, Executive Director of Morecambe Bay Partnership will give her Lunchtime Lecture on the charity she directs.

"Morecambe Bay Partnership is a small charity that makes BIG things happen. We're working hard to bring benefits to the communities, heritage and environment around the Bay. The Partnership has secured over £3.5M of external investment. Funding that would not otherwise have come to the Morecambe Bay area. We aim to help secure £10M in the next 10 years to make more great things happen.

Our projects include the Bay Cycle Way and bringing 2020Vision exhibition to the Bay.

Partnerships are at the very core of how we work. It's how we make BIG things happen even though we are small.

Our core team is just 7 dedicated staff, committed to making great things happen, and all of whom care deeply about the communities of the Bay. We have a wonderful team of volunteers running beach cleans and helping in many other ways."

Executive Director, Susannah Bleakley, has led the Partnership for 16 years, and is full of energy and enthusiasm. Originally from Bolton, she taught sciences in a bush school by Lake Victoria and has been an Exploration Geologist with Shell for 7 years, latterly in Indonesia.

Susannah’s Lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, where there will be plenty of chance to explore the issues raised.

The Lunchtime Lecture will run as usual from 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3, with the Research & Discussion Forum following on in the same room after a refreshment break.

Other News…

You may recall that we were recently visited by Arts Admin who presented their show ‘The Roadless Trip’ by Sarah Woods. Immediately following the performance, audience members were invited to share their thoughts on camera, with a view to incorporating this material into the show. Well, I am pleased to say that the company were happy with our contributions and have incorporated them, and you can experience the new version of the show (possibly now starring you!) at the Nuffield Theatre on 5th November at 6:30pm. All are welcome and you can get further information on this event from the Lancaster Arts website:
lancasterarts.co.uk


11-10-15

Well, the new academic year is well and truly underway.


Last Week…

To start our 10th year, founder of the original Senior Learners Programme, Dr Fiona Frank returned to talk with us about two important aspects of her life. Sustainable living and Judaism. Fiona’s talk was both personal and educational and gave us all a glimpse into both these worlds and how they have come to overlap in her own life. Fiona was introduced by George Henson. The oldest member of our group and one of the original members of the SLP. There was plenty of questions and answers and spirits were high. A wonderful start to the year. Many thanks to Fiona who continues to inspire us all!

If you missed Fiona’s’ lecture, you can listen again at our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures



Next Week…

This coming Wednesday (14th October 2015) Stephen Andrew, Construction Project Manager with Dong Energy, will present his Lunchtime Lecture on ‘The Walney Extension Wind Turbine Project’.

Stephen’s presentation will look at the wind turbine project and examine its impact on the local area. He will also provide an introduction to wind turbine science and the types of environmental studies required for a project of this nature.

Following on from the lecture, the Research & Discussion Forum will give everyone a chance to explore themes raised during Stephen’s talk.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm onwards.

More details on the Lunchtime Lectures for this term can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures



Other News…

Healthy adult volunteers aged over 55 are needed for a study of eye movements as an early indicator of impairment in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

Researchers at Lancaster University and the Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust are conducting a study to investigate eye movements as a possible way to help diagnose Alzheimer’s disease. We would like to record eye movements and performance on the cognitive tests to see if they might be useful in the future as an aid to diagnosis.

To complete this study we will need to include a group of people who do not have Alzheimer’s disease as a comparison group. An infra-red eye-tracking camera will be used to record your eye movements while you are looking at a computer screen. You will also be asked to complete some tests of your memory and attention. This will involve a series of simple questions that will help to provide more information to help us identify whether the eye movements are related to other functions of the brain. You will not be paid or compensated for your participation. However, the organisers of this research will be able to contribute towards travel costs.

If you would like to be considered as control participant in this research please contact by telephone or email:

Dr. Trevor Crawford: 01524 593761
email: t.crawford@lancaster.ac.uk

Dr. Thomas Wilcockson: 01524 593164
email: t.wilcockson@lancaster.ac.uk


Also, Lancaster University is hosting a 'Walk to Defy Dementia' on Sunday 18th October! A two mile woodland walk at Lancaster University with regular exciting pit-stops and entertainment. Fun for all the family. http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/a-walk-to-defy-dementia-registration-18285958795?aff=website

…and finally, Professor Allsop is presenting a FREE public lecture at The Dukes, Lancaster on his research into Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Defying Dementia: from the laboratory to the clinic will be held on Thursday 22nd October.
http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/public-lecture-defying-dementia-from-the-laboratory-to-the-clinic-tickets-18259561841?aff=CrossReferralLink





04-10-15


Hello,

I hope this post finds you well and refreshed after a pleasant summer break.

We have an exciting year of lectures and events ahead. This academic year is the 10th year of a dedicated senior education programme at Lancaster University. What a journey it has been, and this year promises to be the best year yet! This term, the Michaelmas term, will focus on three academic areas of interest. Environment, Literature and Social Inclusion.

I’m very pleased to announce that we begin our new term this coming Wednesday (7th October 2015) with a Lunchtime Lecture by the founder of the Senior Learners Programme (the original incarnation of the CLG), Dr Fiona Frank.

Since leaving us to complete her PhD and work closely with Jewish communities throughout Scotland and the Scottish Isles, Fiona has also been heavily involved in the creation of an ecological community and also a thriving business centre. Fiona will present ‘The Reluctant Environmentalist’ which draws on her personal experiences over recent years as an active member of Forgebank, the housing project on the River Lune at Halton, just outside Lancaster.

Fiona’s lecture will be followed, as last year, by the popular Research & Discussion Forum which gives all attendees a chance to explore further the themes raised in the lecture. This part of the programme has really taken off over the last year and we look forward to lots more interesting discussion, to which we can all contribute.

Both the Lunchtime Lecture and the Research & Discussion Forum will take place in our usual venue, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm. The Forum usually concludes around 3:45pm

We look forward to seeing you there. Feel free to bring a friend. Everyone is welcome.

If you have any access requirements in order to attend the lecture/discussion group, please let us know and we will endeavour to put them in place.

You can view the lecture programme line-up for this term on our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Finally, we still have some places available on the Open Lecture part of the programme. This is the part that allows senior learners to sit in on selected undergraduate lectures across the campus. If you think you might like to take part, please refer to the details on the website and contact us. We will then arrange this for you. More details can be found here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28F%29+Open+Lecture+Scheme

Thanks, and here’s to an outstanding 10th year of learning!

Best wishes,

Dave
(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)



17-05-15

Last Wednesday Professor Gill Baynes gave us a lecture on Medical Research. This lecture was an excellent follow-on to Gill’s earlier lecture on Medical Ethics. Gill discussed the tenets and application of the concept of Evidence Based Medicine. She addressed the complex logistics of researching in the NHS before moving onto some of the basic principles of research such as randomisation and "blinding". Finally Gill discussed the types of clinical trials used in medical research. As with her last lecture, Gill concluded with her signature quiz. She also provided us with a number of cartoons throughout the lecture which raised smiles all round.

The lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where we discussed issues raised during the Gill’s lecture. Jean writes…

‘A smaller group than usual explored the participation of patients in medical research and some of the dilemmas faced by seriously ill individuals, clinicians and researchers trialling new treatments before they become officially licensed. We looked at the expectations of patients, the frustrations experienced when treatments are not available and the complexities of public and private access to medical therapies and aftercare. We acknowledged the evolution from a paternalistic to an evidence-based approach and the growing acceptance of patient rights and responsibilities with regard to health and wellbeing. There clearly still existed, however, some confusion as to where, exactly, the boundaries lay between the various stakeholders in a medical environment.’

If you would like to listen to Gill’s lecture, you can do so on the website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (20th May 2015) Janet Ross-Mills (CLG/Age UK) & Esther Nimmo (Compassion in Dying) will present their Lunchtime Lecture on 'The 'My Life, My Decision' Project - Planning Ahead to Ensure Your Wishes are Respected'.

My Life, My Decision is a Flagship project funded by the Big Lottery Fund Silver Dreams programme and is being delivered in partnership with Age UK and Compassion in Dying. The project aims to raise awareness of end of life rights and choices, provide CPD accredited training to Age UKs and other organisations across England and ensure that vulnerable older people can access information and support in their homes to enable them to make informed choices about their end-of-life treatment and to ensure that their decisions can be respected.

In this lecture, Janet and Esther will discuss end of life choices and rights and how you can ensure your wishes are respected.

The Lunchtime Lecture will then be followed by a Forum Death Cafe. In Dying Matters Week, we take the opportunity to enjoy tea and cakes whilst sharing thoughts on end of life planning, death and dying. This is a great chance for attendees to sidestep the usual taboo of death, which has long been the dominant narrative in our culture, and begin to explore the idea of a positive death based on self-determination rather than chance.

You can find out more from either of these websites:
http://www.ageuk.org.uk/southlakeland/our-services/age-uk-south-lakeland-services/my-life-my-decision/
http://compassionindying.org.uk/services-near-me/


You will recall we were recently visited by Bristol based artist’s Ella Good and Nicki Kent who run the ‘A Decade With Mars’ project. They spoke of returning to Lancaster to launch a weather balloon as part of their timetable of project events. Well, the date is now confirmed as Sunday 24th May. It will take place in Williamson Park at 1pm. All are welcome to come along and enjoy the spectacle!

For more information, visit their website:
http://www.ellaandnicki.com/


11-05-15

Last Wednesday we run our first CLG Conference ‘Medicine, Memory and Melancholy’ in The Sanctuary at Lancaster City Library. I’m pleased to say it went very smoothly indeed.

Professor Christine Millligan started the proceedings by welcoming all attendees to the event. She then introduced Mr Sanjay Tanna, Pharmacist and Independent Prescriber who spoke about ‘Understanding and Managing Medication’. This talk focused on the need for regular reviews of medication and the possibilities of conflicts between medications, something which is ever more of a concern as a wider range of medications become commonly used. Sanjay also spoke of the constant need to monitor for side effects and the importance of avoiding prescribing medicines beyond their time of need.

Sanjay’s talk was followed by Mr Ian Williamson of The Silver Line. This is a volunteer service set up to provide telephone befriending to older people who have little or no contact with other people or the outside world. This is an increasingly common situation as families become smaller, relations relocate to other parts of the country or die, leaving older family members isolated and without the human contact we all take for granted. The Silver Line carries out an essential role in supporting those isolated individuals who have little or no chance of maintaining their social connections. If you would like to know more about this service, and how you might become a volunteer befriender, please visit their website:

http://www.thesilverline.org.uk/

The final part of the day was taken on by Professor Keith Percy, who spoke about the ‘Memory and Learning in Later Life’ European project which he has run over the last couple of years, and many CLG group members have been involved with. This was a fascinating project looking at the workings of memory and learning ability in older people from different cultural backgrounds. Keith set a fun task of learning words (cricket terms) with the use of pictures, mnemonics and rhymes. This provided a good illustration of how we might employ one or more techniques to aid our memories and, consequently, still be able to achieve high levels of recollection in advancing years.

Excellent cakes and refreshments were provided by the Friends of Lancaster Library. All in all the day was a very interesting one, with lots of useful information on how to improve life for ourselves and for other people as we age. I would like to thank the events sub-group (Jean, Irene and Rita of the Steering Group) for doing such a great job in organising the event. I hope we might see a similar event taking place next year. I would also like to extend our gratitude to Christine, Keith, Sanjay and Ian for their valuable contributions. Thanks also go out to Lancaster University Alumni, Developments and Events Division, and Centre for Ageing Research for helping to make the event possible.

This coming Wednesday (13th May 2015) Professor Gill Baynes, former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria, currently Chair of Lancaster & Morecambe U3A, will present her Lunchtime Lecture on 'Medical Research'.

Professor Gill Baynes will discuss the tenets and application of the concept of Evidence Based Medicine. She will then address the logistics of researching in the NHS before moving onto some of the basic principles of research such as randomisation and "blinding". Finally Gill will discuss the types of clinical trials used in medical research. After her conclusion Gill will provide her signature quiz!

You will remember Gill from her recent visit to us when she presented an excellent lecture on Medical Ethics. We are pleased to welcome Gill back to talk on the subject of Medical Research.

Gill’s lecture will be followed by lively debate in the Research & Discussion Forum.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1PM.

All are welcome.


19-05-15

Last Wednesday we had a Digital Lecture looking at the contemporary phenomenon of 3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing (AM).

The group looked at the methods employed by current 3D printers to create objects using data held in digital information files. We saw how the machine ‘builds’ the object in slices, and we began to appreciate the full potential of creating an object in this way. The group learned how moving parts can be created in a pre-assembled form when additive manufacturing is employed, and we looked at the benefits of this method when creating objects of microscopic proportions. The advantages of this method of bespoke production were quite clear, and we saw the range of objects which can be produced using such techniques. We were introduced to the benefits of transferring detailed plans to a location where the parts are then produced for use, reducing the need to move objects over large distances unnecessarily. We also understood how amending a design becomes easier and less expensive when the only thing needed to be changed is the design data which is directing the manufacturing process.

The group was introduced to the range of ideas which can be fully realised through additive manufacturing. We also thought about how this exceptional form of engineering might impact on existing forms of production and, in turn, on employment. The balance between positive advantage and negative impact emerged as a concerning factor in this form of production.

If you would like to view the video material we watched in the digital lecture you can do so via the links on our web page:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

The lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where we looked at the funding of political parties. Jean writes…

“In the Research and Discussion Forum we shared our thoughts on funding for political parties. Inevitably our focus was lost numerous times as we commented on various aspects of the current General Election campaigns and registered our distaste with the offensive denigration of individuals and prominence of negative propaganda. Different types of funding were explored but none was deemed impervious to abuse or corruption of some sort.. However desirable a state-funded approach might appear it was considered extremely unlikely that the British public would consent to it. We concluded an energetic discussion with some amusing examples of antics one or two senior politicians are prepared to indulge in to enhance party funds.”

This coming Wednesday (6th May 2015) I’m pleased to announce, we will host our first ever CLG conference…

Lancaster University Continuing Learning Group Hosts


'Medicine, Memory and Melancholy'


(Half Day Conference)


At The Sanctuary, Lancaster Library, Market Square, Lancaster


On Wednesday 6th May 2015 1.00 - 4.00 p.m.



This event will appeal to older individuals interested in new approaches to the management of medication, memory and social isolation in advancing years.

It will be introduced by Professor Christine Milligan and comprise three key presentations by Mr Sanjay Tanna, Pharmacist and Independent Prescriber, Mr Ian Williams, Volunteer Manager, The Silver Line, and Keith Percy, Professor emeritus, each followed by question and answer sessions.

The closing date for registration for this event was 15/16th April 2015.
We are pleased to say that the response has been good. However, the event is now fully booked and we are not able to accept any more applications to attend. Thank You.

This event is supported by Lancaster University Alumni, Developments and Events Division, and Centre for Ageing Research.

We hope to make this conference an annual event and will keep you informed as to our future plans.

We are back on campus again next week with a Lunchtime Lecture by Professor Gill Baynes on Medical Research. More details can be found here:

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures


23-04-15

Hello,

The term got off to a great start on Wednesday with Shuruq Naguib’s excellent lecture on Islam and Gender.

In her lecture, Shuruq spoke about the role of women in Islam and made reference to the Prophet Mohammed’s wives. Shuruq told us of Mohammed’s first wife, Khadija, and her cousin, Waraqa, and the role they played in assisting the Prophet to understand the first revelation revealed to him by the Archangel Gabriel. This being a pivotal moment in the life of the Prophet.

Shuruq went on to focus on verses of the Qur’an which concern women and their roles. We spent time on these verses exploring ways in which they may be interpreted. We looked at the Islamic ideas regarding menstruation, purification and clothing in contexts both historic and contemporary.

This was a very engaging lecture with plenty of chance for the group to explore the themes. The depth and breadth of Shuruq’s knowledge was astounding and the group felt that there was plenty more that we didn’t manage to fit into the two hours of lecture and discussion. Shuruq kindly agreed to return to talk with us again in the future. We look forward to her return.

As the lecture over ran, due to the myriad of questions the group had on the subject, we didn’t get around to running the Research & Discussion Forum, which was to be on the theme of opinion polls. However we still hope to cover this at a later date.

Next Wednesday (28th April) we will have a Digital Lecture entitled ‘What does 3D Printing Mean for the Future?’

3D printing , or additive manufacturing, is a process of making three dimensional solid objects from a digital file. The creation of a 3D printed object is achieved using additive processes. In an additive process an object is created by laying down successive layers of material until the entire object is created. Each of these layers can be seen as a thinly sliced horizontal cross-section of the eventual object.

In this Digital Lecture, we will look at a number of short video presentations on the concept and uses of this exciting and ground-breaking technology, which has recently come out of the laboratory and into the public domain. There will be plenty of chance for discussion around the topic and group members are encouraged to imagine uses to which this technology can be put, beyond those outlined in the presentations.

The lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: The Funding of Political Parties - What is the ideal model? In the run up to the General Election we discuss why political parties need to be funded, the benefits and pitfalls of the existing system and how it might be improved.

We hope you can join us.

For more information, please visit our website:

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

Finally, I’d like to inform you of an event taking place this weekend…
On Saturday April 25th (this Saturday) between 9:30am and 4:00pm, the University of Cumbria (Lancaster Campus) is running a ‘Towards Zero Carbon’ workshop.

‘The day will start with a presentation and Q&A by Paul Allen, co-ordinator of the Zero Carbon Britain report, the Centre for Alternative Technology’s (CAT) flagship project that details how a modern, zero emissions society is possible using technologies that are available today.

There will also be a presentation from Prof. John Urry from Lancaster University on ‘Designing a car free city’.

The rest of the day will explore what needs to happen to make a Zero Carbon North West a reality. You’ll hear about all the great projects that already exist in the area, and some inspiring ideas and research from elsewhere. There will be plenty of opportunities to collaborate, discuss, tell stories, make plans, share dreams, hopes and fears…

Conference themes will include ‘community energy’, ‘local food & agriculture’, ‘becoming an agent of change’, ‘energy saving’, ‘divestment from fossil fuels’ and ‘changing car use’. The organisers hope that you will go away inspired to really make a difference, and with a group of collaborators who you can work with to develop and scale up your plans.’

This conference is for individuals, community organisations, businesses big and small, – everyone who has a stake in a more sustainable, healthy and prosperous future.
For more details on this event, visit the ‘Towards Zero Carbon’ website.

http://towardszerocarbon.uk
Thanks for your attention.

Best wishes,

Dave

(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group…and currently travelling between Braunston and Cropredy on a slow-moving, spacious narrowboat)


19-04-15

The new term for the CLG starts this coming Wednesday (22nd April 2015) and we begin with Dr Shuruq Naquib of the Politics, Philosophy and Religion department presenting her lecture ‘Islam and Gender’.

Shuruq received her PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Manchester, Department of Middle Eastern Studies. Her research covers two key strands: the classical and pre-modern intellectual and textual traditions, particularly Qur'an hermeneutics and ritual law; and Muslim responses to modernity, with a focus on how twentieth century and contemporary Muslim women scholars read the tradition to intellectually and socially develop their religious authority as knowers of the tradition.

We think Sharuq’s lecture will sit comfortably with the previous lectures we’ve had this academic year on aspects of Islam.

We follow Shuruq’s lecture with the Research & Discussion Forum. The first one of the term focuses on ‘Opinion Polls: What do they actually tell us? Do they influence voting intentions?’
In the run up to the forthcoming General Election, we look at the true value of opinion polls. What do they tell us? What value do they have? What part do they play in the overall event of an election?

Both events will take place in our usual room, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3. The Lunchtime Lecture starting at 1pm, with the Research & Discussion Forum following after a tea/coffe break at around 2.45pm.

I am currently populating the website with a host of lectures for this term, some still to be confirmed. Keep checking by. I can assure you there will be some fascinating and topical Lunchtime Lectures for you to enjoy…

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

…and don’t forget, if you’re unable to attend, then you can listen to our lectures in audio format on the website any time you like.

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures





08-03-15

Last week two artists from ‘Residence’, an artist-led community in Bristol, came to talk with us about their project 'A Decade with Mars'.

Ella Good and Nicki Kent are live artists who make work about meeting people, conversation, local and global communities, and the ways in which we collectively choose to live. Their work is often about creating social spaces that act as a meeting point between art and everyday life, where all kinds of dialogue can happen.

In their talk Ella and Nicki discussed their current work ‘A Decade With Mars’ - a long term project that sees them meeting a group of people who want to be astronauts, over a ten year time scale.

‘We’ve been meeting a small group of people who have applied to become the first humans to live on another planet, as part of a one-way colonisation trip to Mars, due to launch in ten years time. Our project will see us meeting these prospective astronauts again and again over the next ten years, in parallel to the time scale of their proposed mission. We will make work along the way that marks the present and imagines the future, reflecting on sustainability, time and the communities we live in and create.’

The project is currently in its first year. In September 2014 Ella and Nicki launched a weather balloon together and held a launch party with the applicants. Throughout the first year they will be performing a series of launches and talks to continue marking the beginning of the project.

You can follow the project by visiting Ella and Nicki’s website:
http://www.ellaandnicki.com/#adecadewithmars

The talk was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. Ella and Nicki joined us in a fascinating discussion prompted by their project ideas. In the forum we looked at issues around sustainability and ethics around the idea of sending a group of people on a one way journey to a distant planet. We examined both the psychological aspects and the ontological features of such a form of exploration. This provided a rich and fertile ground for ideas to take root. It was felt that the project is an interesting one, which will produce a great deal of worthwhile discussion around a broad range of academic, sociological and psychological issues.

I will post the audio from the lecture online over the coming week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (11th March) we will end our term with a ‘Digital Lecture’. Dame Barbara Monroe, CEO of St Christopher's Hospice and Hon Professor at Lancaster University Observatory on End of Life Care presenting a lecture entitled 'Making Sure Everyone gets End of Life Care - A Shared Responsibility?'

Lancaster University held a public lecture on the important issue of End of Life Care in June 2014 as part of our 50th Anniversary events. This digital lecture is the video recording of that lecture.

Speakers included Dr Catherine Walshe (Co-Director of the International Observatory on End of Life Care at Lancaster University), Sue McGraw (Chief Executive of St John’s Hospice, Lancaster) and Dame Barbara Monroe (Chief Executive of St Christopher’s Hospice, London) discussing how we provide care for those who are dying and their families.

The audience for this sell-out event was a mix of both interested local people and healthcare professionals from organisations across the North West and beyond.

The Digital Lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where the group will have plenty of chance to discuss issues raised in the 50th Anniversary Lecture.

And that, as they say, is that. Our term draws to a close and it has been a very successful term with wonderful lectures and dynamic discussion forums. I hope you have enjoyed it as much as we have.

The new term kicks off on Wednesday 22nd April. Our new programme is currently being planned. Keep checking our website for details as they are confirmed.

Have a good break and we look forward to welcoming you back in April.

Best wishes,

From Dave and the whole Steering Group.



01-03-15

Last Wednesday Clare Mumford of the Open University visited to discuss her current PhD research.

Clare began by giving us an outline of her thesis, which explores the reasons why people stay silent. Clare’s research is focused on organisational settings, but clearly could have implications in a broader arena. She has been looking at how people talk about staying silent - of withholding thoughts, concerns, suggestions - in project group communication as they actually work through the processes of delivering the work, before they know what the outcomes of their actions might be.

Clare has, through her research, created a number of ‘Storylines’ which aim to encapsulate the myriad of underlying reasons individuals might stay silent in an organisational setting. This then facilitates us towards a better understanding of this fascinating and under researched area of communication.

As a group we looked at the effectiveness of these ‘Storylines’ in relation to our own feelings around times we have stayed silent in organisational settings either through conscious choice, unconscious choice or even through feelings of necessity or diplomacy. We looked at such things as group dynamics, personal behavioural characteristics and also philosophical aspects around debate etiquette. We also explored temporality and both natural and organisational hierarchical structures which exist and the effects they have on us. We even touched on what the positive and negative outcomes of staying silent might be for the individual, the group and the project as a whole.

The Research & Discussion Forum followed on from Clare’s lecture. Jean takes up the story…

‘The theme for the day was Communication, silent or otherwise. Our forum members verbally embraced different modes, including body language, to interpret meaning. We differentiated between spontaneous and contrived, authentic and scripted exchanges, and explored the use of role play, and acting skills, and gestures which in our own culture, at least, are deliberately used to signify power and dominance. In a comfort zone of choice, we watched an amusing video clip which added entertainment value to an enjoyable, if light-hearted, look at how we interact at different levels.’

You can view the video clip here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x9YTxff3pHU

We hope to post the audio of Clare’s lecture further down the line when she has completed her PhD. In the meantime, on behalf of the group, I would like to wish Clare the very best with her forthcoming Viva. We thoroughly enjoyed having the chance to look into this interesting area of research and look forward to hearing more from Clare in the future.

This coming Wednesday (4th March) Ella Good & Nicki Kent of ‘Residence’, an artist-led community in Bristol, will visit the group to give their talk, 'A Decade with Mars’.

Ella Good and Nicki Kent are live artists from Bristol who make work about meeting people, conversation, local and global communities, and the ways in which we collectively choose to live. Their work is often about creating social spaces that act as a meeting point between art and everyday life, where all kinds of dialogue can happen.

They will be discussing their current work ‘A Decade With Mars’ - a long term project that sees Ella and Nicki meeting a group of people who want to be astronauts, over a ten year time scale. They will launch the project in Lancaster as well as six other cities around the UK by launching a weather balloon to film the edge of space. Attendees will be invited along to this free event which is due to take place soon.

Ella and Nikki’s talk will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: ‘Space Exploration’.
In this forum we discuss how much of a priority this scientific endeavour should be and contrast it with investment to sustain our own planet for the future of mankind.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

I’d like to tell you about a forthcoming event hosted by The North Lancashire
Dying Well Community Partnership with the National Council for Palliative Care and Dying Matters…

GOOD GRIEF!
Come and hear what local people are doing to address illness, ageing, dying and loss.


Together we can create a compassionate community in North Lancashire.
What does that mean for you?


Featuring Shane Johnstone, local Artist/Sculptor, plus community and national leaders.


Tuesday 24th March at the Storey Institute, Lancaster 1pm to 4pm.
To reserve your place for this FREE event, please email
n.lancscompassionatecommunity@gmail.com



22-02-15
Last Wednesday we paid a visit to the Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre on campus to view the latest exhibition 'Returned Triumphant: Loans to the Exhibition John Ruskin, Artist and Observer'.

Our visit to the Ruskin took a different form on this occasion as curator, Stephen Wildman, was called away at short notice therefore leaving us without our usual guided tour that we enjoy so much. Being a resourceful bunch, we took in the exhibition and took it in turns to read out aloud the accompanying text to the pictures which made the biggest impressions on us. This served as an ideal catalyst for conversation about the piece, the context and about Ruskin himself. Many thanks to all for taking part and doing their bit. The exhibition was a good one, with some outstanding pieces of beautiful work. Drawings, paintings and daguerreotypes. Highly recommended.

After viewing the exhibition we then went to our usual venue and had our Research & Discussion Forum. Jean writes…

‘After the sedate visit to the Ruskin Library, our forum members were ready to unleash their inner thoughts and ideas on ‘Who Owns Public Art’. We embarked on a conversational tour around a verbal gallery of images, including Banksy’s ‘Slave Labour’ and Henry Moore’s ‘Old Flo’, Antony Gormley’s ‘Another Place’ and ‘Angel of the North’ and , inevitably, the ‘Elgin Marbles’. We explored diverse definitions of ‘Public Art’ and who owns it, and the commodification of Art, juxtaposed with concepts around its function in relation to status, education, and power. We even discovered our university boasts a Barbara Hepworth sculpture in Alex Square! (I stopped to admire it later). We touched on the ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ aspects of some genres and artists, and in conclusion, agreed with the Art Fund Director, who wrote: ‘Art was never meant to finance public services; it is there to nurture souls’.

This coming Wednesday (25th February 2015) Claire Mumford, PhD Student with the Open University will present her session 'Storylines of Silence'

Clare is a final-year PhD student in the Open University Business School in Milton Keynes. She lives in Lancaster. Prior to her PhD study, she worked in the North West in both the public and voluntary sector. Her experience of project group work led her to her current interest in project group communication and in particular silence in project groups.

Her PhD study has approached the study of silence in an organisational setting in a slightly different way than other research conducted in the fields of organisational behaviour, psychology and learning. She has been looking at how people talk about staying silent - of withholding thoughts, concerns, suggestions - in project group communication as they actually work through the processes of delivering the work, before they know what the outcomes of their actions might be. Her ethnographic research has been exploring the ways in which the concept of staying silent is made sensible and coherent in people's talk about their own behaviour: what needs to be communicated? What does not? How do people rationalise and explain the action of choosing not to speak up?

She is now at the writing-up stage of her research, and this session seeks to examine and test with you three "storylines" of silence, to which project members refer in order to construct their own silence behaviour as reasonable. Your feedback on these storylines, their relevance and coherence be most appreciated for Clare's final development of her thesis.
Clare’s session will be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. This week’s theme is ‘The Value of Silence in Communication’. In this session we look at how non-verbal communication informs our understanding of 'meaning'.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

I would like to draw your attention to a public lecture taking place on Wednesday, 11 March 2015
At The Storey, Lancaster.

As part of Lancaster University’s ‘Celebrating 50 Years’ lecture series, Professor Jeffrey Richards, Emeritus Professor of Cultural History at Lancaster University will present his lecture ‘Film and the Teaching of History’.
(Arrivals at 6.15pm for a 6.30pm start until 8.30pm. A reception will be held after the lecture at 7.30pm)

‘There is currently a debate underway, initiated by the previous Education Secretary, Michael Gove, about the content and method of teaching History. In an age where pupils are very visually aware and media savvy, there is a trend towards using film to teach history. This lecture will examine the benefits and dangers of such a development and look more broadly at the relationship of film and national history for the mass youthful audience.

Prof Jeffrey Richards, is Emeritus Professor of Cultural History at Lancaster University and has over forty years’ service to Lancaster University. Jeffrey Richards is one of the leading international experts on the history of film and television and is a regular contributor to the media as well as to academic audiences. He is a published author and broadcasts regularly on BBC Radio 3 and 4. He is general editor of the Cinema and Society series for I.B. Tauris and of the Studies in Popular Culture series for Manchester University Press.’

Thanks for your attention, have a good week.


15-02-15

Last week Dr John Shepherd, retired academic from the University of Cumbria, visited the groupand presented a thought provoking lecture on ‘Varieties of Contemporary Islam’.

In the lecture, John explored the West’s tendency to try to understand Islam through a lens of Christianity and how this can lead to an inaccurate understanding of Islam. John spoke of the different strands of the religion and contextualised these strands and the relationships between them.

The group heard about the Prophet Mohammed, his life and work. We looked at Islam in relation to other world religions and there was discussion around the tensions that can exist between religion, law and society. John was happy to answer questions and explore ideas, making for an interesting session.

We followed the Lunchtime Lecture with the Research & Discussion Forum focused on the content of the lecture. Jean writes…

‘After listening to an alternative perspective on Islam from Dr John Shepherd, our group wrestled with a variety of propositions and theories in an effort to try and interpret and make sense of recent geo-political issues and developments relating to Islam. Education, motivation, cultural traditions and social change all featured in the mix, as did, inevitably, the role of the media in promoting mostly negative stereotypes. The complexities we faced defied our desire to identify simplistic explanations as we explored the evolving nature of ideologies, religious beliefs and practices. Anticipating we would feel enlightened, we had to acknowledge there was still so much more to learn on this fascinating subject.’

This coming Wednesday (18th February) we will visit the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre on campus to see the Current Exhibition, 'Returned triumphant: Loans to the Exhibition John Ruskin, Artist and Observer'.

‘The Ruskin Library (Ruskin Foundation) was the largest single lender to the recent exhibition of Ruskin drawings and daguerreotypes, the most comprehensive since the Tate Britain centenary exhibition in 2000. This reflects the standing of the Ruskin Library in holding the most important collection of Ruskin’s work in the world.

All 49 loans (out of 132 items) are shown in this display, including ten of the twelve daguerreotype photographs used in the exhibition to emphasise Ruskin’s concentration on drawing and recording what he saw, as a means of understanding both nature and human endeavour, especially in the finest Gothic architecture of northern Europe.

Several of the most celebrated works from the Whitehouse Collection are displayed, including The Walls of Lucerne (1866), Vineyard Walk, Lucca(1874) and The North-West Porch of St. Mark’s, Venice (1877). This is a rare chance to see these together, alongside others covering the whole range of Ruskin’s life and interests, over nearly half a century.

If you plan on joining us for the exhibition, please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin Centre on campus at 12.50.

The Lunchtime Lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Who Owns Public Art? In this discussion we will look at the concept of public art in the UK, its benefits and failings.

The RDF will take place after the tour of the Ruskin Centre, in our usual venue, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from around 2.30pm.

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08-02-15

Last Wednesday Professor Gill Baynes presented a fascinating and fare reaching Lunchtime Lecture on the subject of ‘Medical Ethics’.

Gill set out the scope of the lecture early on and, clearly, this is a vast and complex subject of which we could only scratch the surface. That said, Gill moved steadily through and touched on ethical matters in areas as wide and varied as risk versus benefits, ethical principles, duty of care, medical delegation and consent. Gill situated these inside a four part framework of respect for autonomy, beneficience, non-malificence and justice. The lecture was enlightening and expertly given by Gill, who clearly is very well informed in the nuances of this fascinating subject area.

You can listen to Gill’s lecture here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

We followed the lecture with a Research & Discussion Forum on the subject ‘The Medicalisation of Human Experience’. Jean writes…

A lively group examined the medicalisation of human experience in particular, and society in general, from numerous perspectives. Drawing on work by Peter Conrad, Ivan Illich and Ben Goldacre, we delved into the cynical manipulation of the media and consumers by pharmaceutical corporations. We explored ideas about medicalisation and ethics in the context of social control, and acknowledged the constraints historically applied to aberrant behaviours; moral, criminal and medical. And yet, however undesirable and distasteful we find these measures, we appear to be willing participants in the process, we concluded. We look for easy answers, certainty, simplicity and predictability in our lives. We find the idea of pills to solve our complex social difficulties very appealing indeed!

Next Wednesday (11th February) we continue with our theme of Islam over the ages as Dr John Shepherd of the University of Cumbria presents his Lunchtime Lecture 'Varieties of Contemporary Islam'.

Islam today comes, so to speak, in many shapes and sizes. This lecture-cum-discussion will explore a typology of the different kinds of traditions, movements and key thinkers forming the rich pattern that constitutes contemporary Islam.

John’s lecture will then be followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: Islam in Society, where we continue the lecture theme and discuss relevant perspectives.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.

I have been asked to inform all our readers about an appeal for donations being launched by Lancaster University to carry out further research into Alzheimer’s disease.

The Defying Dementia website says…

‘Several years ago our scientists at Lancaster University developed a drug that blocks the formation of the 'senile plaques' that are found in the brains of victims of Alzheimer's disease/dementia. Our drug blocks these plaques from forming, along with their toxic effect on brain cells. It is highly stable in the body and we have very recently found out that it preserves memory!

Unfortunately, the laboratory work has reached the end of funding by Research Councils, but the drug is not developed to the standard where it could be adopted by the pharmaceutical industry.

Therefore, we are launching a major fund-raising campaign to raise money which will ultimately get the drug into human clinical trials!

Prof David Allsop says, "With your help, we will carry on the experiments needed to take our drug closer to the point where it can be used by people with Alzheimer's disease. We are committed in developing this desperately needed drug to help people with dementia, but we need your help to raise the funds needed to get this drug to Phase I Human Clinical Trials and beyond!"

You can find out more about this worthwhile project by visiting the Defying Dementia area of the JustGiving website:
https://www.justgiving.com/defyingdementia

There is also a video on youtube.com which explains more:
https://www.youtube.com/v/Z4SBQM2W96w


01-02-15

We had a very interesting Lunchtime Lecture last week, given by Mary Searle-Chatterjee.

Mary discussed the (disputed) origins of the Islamic traditions that have influenced the vast family of civilizations that have emerged among Muslim people. Interpretations of Islamic traditions vary hugely from China and Indonesia to Morocco and France. Traditions are, in any case, only one factor, among many, that shape the lives of Muslims today.

You can listen to Mary’s lecture in audio format here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Mary’s lecture was followed by an excellent Research & Discussion Forum: Reflections on Islam.
Jean writes…

‘Such was the wealth of fascinating material in Mary's lecture, the forum struggled to find a focus, initially. But momentum was soon established as our discussion ranged across numerous related issues; the positive contribution of Islam in the world, attitudes to women, the distortion of values used to fuel ideologies, the impact of inequality in society, the reduced status of sections of our communities, mindsets as an advantage or hindrance and the varied interpretations of sacred texts. And on the day following Holocaust Memorial ceremonies, we reminded ourselves of how easy it can be for demonism to flourish if statutory and cultural safeguards are not in place.'

This coming Wednesday (4th February) Professor Gill Baynes of Lancaster & Morecambe U3A.
Presents her Lunchtime Lecture 'Medical Ethics'.

Gill will introduce the Medical Ethics presentation by considering ethical principles and then discuss a timeline of medical ethics from before Christ. Some controversial experimentation will be considered. Evaluation of risk versus benefit and the concept of quality adjusted life years, as a means of comparing the efficacy and cost effectiveness of treatments will be discussed.

Gill will continue by introducing the concept of medical accuracy in medical procedures. The principles of consent to a medical intervention and the tenets of confidentially relevant to it will be explained.

Issues around duty of care and medical negligence will also be introduced. The current and topical issue of medical delegation to health care professionals will be considered.

Gill’s lecture will be followed by the Research & Discussion Form: The Medicalisation of Human Experience. In the session we will explore this developing trend and discuss the possible consequences of culturally defining behaviour as a treatable medical condition.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.



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25-01-15

Last week Claire Hardaker introduced us to the world of Forensic Linguistics. In her lecture she discussed the contemporary issue around statements made on social media which may or may not constitute dangerous threats to individuals or national security. We think nothing of using strong terms in everyday language, such as “I’ll kill him if he leaves that door open once more” and “I’ll chop your fingers off if you touch that”. These statements, in context and to a limited audience are almost meaningless. They certainly are not cause for concern. However, when these kind of statements are made on social media, with an audience of hundreds, thousands or millions and without a clear context or tone, then there can be cause for concern. Claire discussed the repercussions which have ensued from such statements as they travel across cultures. Claire also looked at the kind of real threats which are made via internet media by recognised terror organisations and asked how we might differentiate between these very different forms of communication.

You can listen to Claire’s lecture in audio format on our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Claire’s lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. Jean writes…

‘After a fascinating lecture, it was almost inevitable that members of the forum would want to share their thoughts on the use and interpretation of language in digital communications and acknowledge the vulnerability of Internet users, and the potentially sinister surveillance of information largely considered 'private'. But some highly amusing anecdotes featuring inappropriate 'predictive' wording in texts and emails soon lifted the mood of the group and a quiz on common texting abbreviations and acronyms revealed us to be largely 'out of touch' with 'keeping in touch', as it were, in the digital age. Examples of funny actual mobile phone text conversations concluded our light- hearted session. LOL? We certainly did!’

This coming Wednesday (28th January)Dr Mary Searle-Chatterjee of the Centre for Applied South Asian Studies will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Origins and Spread of Muslim Civilizations - A Cultural and Political Approach'.

Mary's talk will introduce the (disputed) origins of the Islamic traditions that have influenced the vast family of civilizations that have emerged among Muslim people. Interpretations of Islamic traditions vary hugely from China and Indonesia to Morocco and France. Traditions are, in any case, only one factor, among many, that shape the lives of Muslims and Islamists today.

You may recognise Mary as she is an attendee at some of our lectures and research groups. She also recently presented us with an excellent lecture on Travel writing.

Mary’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum where we will get a chance to discuss the lecture content.

The Lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm, with the RDF following on at around 2.30.

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18-01-15

The term got off to a great start last week, despite the inclement weather, with Sam Riches’ lecture ‘Exploring the Bestiary’.


Sam introduced us to two excellent bestiary websites which gather together a wide range of representations of beasts, both real and imagined, along with their characteristics. Sam explained how these ideas came about and how closely linked with Christian allegory the bestiary was. Indeed, Sam showed us how the bestiary was a mode of representation of biblical ideas and themes made accessible and memorable to those Christians without the ability to read the messages for themselves.
The two websites used extensively by Sam to illustrate her lecture are: http://bestiary.ca/ and http://www.abdn.ac.uk/bestiary/
Both are extremely good and I would particularly recommend browsing them when listening to the lecture recording, which is posted on our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

We followed the lecture with our usual Research & Discussion Forum. Steering Group member Jean writes…

‘Our topic - ‘Beasts of the Modern Age’ - generated a lively discussion. Introducing the session with an extract from Caspar Henderson’s modern bestiary entitled ‘The Book of Barely Imagined Beings’ featuring images of weird and wonderful real creatures accompanied by scientific text, we went on to explore the application of alarming imagery as a tool and the apparent need for some humans to experience and even enjoy fear, for example, watching films and playing electronic games featuring ‘monsters’ and ‘aliens’. We delved into psychological and sociological theories about human behaviour and moved on via internet images to share our thoughts on different interpretations of modern beasts in the form of threatening ideologies and practices, concluding with recent events in Paris. This extremely thought -provoking and stimulating discussion left much material for future analysis.’

This coming Wednesday (21st January 2015) Dr Claire Hardaker of the Department of Linguistics & English Language at Lancaster University will give her Lunchtime Lecture 'Investigating Tweeting Terrorists with Forensic Linguistics'

This talk introduces forensic linguistics, a field that looks at the intersection between language and the law. We then look at two cases of ‘Twitter terrorism’ and consider how forensic linguistics can help.

Claire's primary research is around aggression, deception, and manipulation in computer-mediated communication (CMC), including phenomena such as flaming, trolling, cyberbullying, and online grooming. Claire tends towards a forensic linguistic approach, based on a corpus linguistic methodology, but due to the multidisciplinary nature of her research, she also inevitably branches out into areas such as psychology, law, and computer science.
This promises to be a fascinating lecture, rooted firmly in modern communication methods and exploring how, and indeed should, these methods might be interpreted.

The lecture will be followed by the RDF on the subject of modern communication, where we will take a light- hearted look at the language, spelling, context and meaning of ‘keeping in touch ‘today. Please bring along some amusing examples of contemporary communication.

The Lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm, with the RDF following in the same venue from around 2.30pm.

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11-01-15

Welcome back!,

I’d like to start by wishing you all a very happy, healthy and prosperous 2015. I hope you’re nicely rested after the Christmas break and looking forward to a brand new term of learning in an exciting range of themes.

The new term for the Continuing Learning Group starts on Wednesday 14th January 2015 with the return of a good friend of the group, Dr Sam Riches.

Sam, who works with the Department of History here at Lancaster University, will present her Lunchtime Lecture ‘Exploring the Bestiary – Medieval Understandings of Animals, Birds, Monsters and More’.

A Bestiary is a collection of short descriptions of all sorts of animals, both real and imaginary, birds and even rocks, accompanied by a moralising explanation and frequently a beautiful image. Some observations of familiar creatures may be quite accurate, but they are given the same weight as totally fabulous accounts. Sam will talk about the history of the Bestiary and introduce some Bestiary websites which you can enjoy exploring in your own time.

Sam’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Beasts of the Modern Age.
In the first RDF of the new term, we discuss the images used to influence behaviour and beliefs in the 21st Century. We examine our thoughts about events in Paris over the past week and explore the possible impact of the images and language used in relation to these events.

If you attended last term you will know that the RDF provides a great chance to explore lecture related ideas and also topical subjects. Both well attended and highly stimulating, we expect the sessions to go from strength to strength.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 at 1pm and 2.45pm, respectively.

I am currently updating the Lunchtime Lecture schedule for this term, and it’s looking really good. Information is being added as we speak, so keep looking in for regular updates and more detailed information:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28D%29+Lunchtime+Lectures

We hope you can join us this term for some or all of our programme of events. However, if you can’t make it along, don’t worry at all, there will of course be plenty of chance to enjoy our lectures at your leisure in audio format here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

We also plan to continue our involvement in research and will be offering research opportunities throughout the term:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28K%29+We+Help+Researchers

Already the term is looking good, we look forward to your company.


Best wishes,

Dave
(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)


07-12-14
Last week Anthony Greenwood, Information Officer for the International Observatory of End of Life Care at Lancaster University, gave his lecture on Recent Developments with the Google Experience.

This lecture followed on from a lecture Anthony gave back in January where he outlined the Google suite of Software including Gmail, social media (Google+) and cloud storage. In this second lecture, Anthony revisited the Google suite, outlining its capabilities and spoke to us about how this advanced software has since been developed further, resulting in an even more capable and impressive collection of applications.

You can listen to Anthony’s lecture here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (10th December) is our last meeting of 2014 and Professor Alan Beattie, Lancaster University (retired) will present his Lunchtime Lecture on the Lakeland Poet, Norman Nicholson.

Norman Nicholson was born in Millom, Cumbria, in 1914 and lived there until his death in 1987 with the exception of two years in his late teens when he was sent to a sanatorium in Hampshire to recover from tuberculosis - an event which shaped his subsequent life. His writing career lasted from 1930 until his death and embraced plays, poetry, novels, criticism and essays. He is best known for his poetry and was awarded the Queens Medal for Poetry in 1977 and the OBE in 1981.

Alan Beattie joined the Centre for Mobilities Research as Hon Research Fellow in September 2007. He was a Module Convenor for the MA in Health Research in the Institute for Health Research 1990-2005, ran an MSc in Public Health 1994-2004 at St Martin's College, and is Emeritus Professor of Public Health and Health Education at the University of Cumbria. Born in Carlisle, he spent 6 years at Oxford University studying and researching in biomedical sciences, and the next 6 years pursuing other interests. Making a turn to environmental and social approaches to health, he then worked in public health across the UK and overseas, along with lecturing at London University: at University College (1973-77), Kings College (1977-79), the Institute of Education (1979-89). Some of his published work is much cited: his model of health promotion is widely used in practice and has long been standard textbook content, likewise his model of community development for health, and his model of curriculum planning for training health professionals. He has also worked extensively for the Open University (1977-2006), for example as course team chair for the pioneering undergraduate course 'Health and Wellbeing' (1992).

This lecture will be followed by a 'Jacob's Join' to celebrate the end of a very successful term. If you would like to bring something for this event, we would ask that you bring finger food which can be eaten easily in a buffet setting. Thanks.

We have all worked hard and had a wonderful term, now it's time to relax and eat cake!
Join us for a drink, a chat, a quiz and a laugh. It's time to celebrate!!!!

The lunchtime Lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm and the Jacob’s Join will follow in the foyer outside lecture theatre 1, 2 and 3 immediately after the lecture.

Our new term starts again after Christmas and New Year. I will send full details out to you at the start of January.

Have a great time. Stay safe and stay warm.

With best wishes from myself and the whole CLG Steering Group.

Dave


30-11-14

Last week Mary Searle-Chatterjee presented us with a fascinating Lunchtime Lecture on 'Travel Writing World-wide in Historical Perspective'.

Mary gave her lecture with reference to the work of Palestinian American literary theorist Edward Said, who helped found the critical-theory field of postcolonialism. She explored Said’s theories around the Western idea of ‘the other’ as secondary and inferior, referencing how this mode of thought has been evident in a broad range of travel writing produced in this part of the world. Mary also discussed the possible audience for much travel writing and how it was often created to inform fellow travellers from the same socioeconomic and educational background, more as a way of preparing the traveller for what they might encounter rather than, in recent decades, as a form of entertainment.

Mary also introduced us to some non Western writers, Ibn Fadhlan and Ibn Battuta, and we were treated to a reading from around 800 AD describing the details of a Viking funeral. We were asked to consider the characteristics of other major travel writing traditions such as the Chinese, Arabic and Persian. This was a very interesting session which resonated with all who have travelled during our lives and been lucky enough to immerse ourselves in cultures different to our own.

The lecture was followed by a Research & Discussion Forum on the same theme. Jean, the chairperson of the discussion explains...

The intrepid travellers in our group reflected an oral rather than written tradition, in the main, and with eloquence and humour took us on a magical tour from Slovakia to Japan, via Ireland, India, Russia, Norway, Australia, Sweden, France and Italy. By cycle, by train, by air and sea, we shared the joy of engaging with people and cultures, the discoveries made, the challenges faced, the experiences and sense of wonder which enriched our lives. We looked briefly at the impact of our curiosity on those whose territory and customs we explored and concluded with some famous quotes, a relevant one to our discussion being James Baldwin's " I met a lot of people in Europe. I even encountered myself ".

I will post May’s lecture to this website towards the end of the week.
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (3rd December) Anthony Greenwood of Lancaster University will present his lecture 'Recent Developments with the Google Family'.

After the success of Anthony's previous Lunchtime Lecture, where he enlightened us to the possibilities opened up by Google's extensive suite of software, Anthony returns to talk with us about the most recent developments.

Anthony is the Information Officer with the International Observatory on End of Life Care at Lancaster University where he is involved with the continued development of their web pages. He also has a background in palliative care, having worked with the prestigious Sheffield Palliative Care Studies Group before coming to work in Lancaster.

Anthony’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'How Do You Use Yours?' The internet is a vast and multi-dimensional world which we all use in different ways. In this forum we will discuss how we use our broadband connections. Is it forums? Education websites? Youtube? Social Media? What do you use? Why do you use it, and how does it enhance your life?

You may recall I recently mentioned a student, Megan Bennett who is looking for people to take part in a research project she is undertaking into eye movements and memory performance. Megan is still looking for participants aged between 18-25 and 55-95 and you are invited to participate. Current research on the effect of eye movements on memory performance, has involved adults or young people, using words as stimuli. This research aims to replicate these findings and extend this topic area to the elderly, using pictures. Specifically this research aims to compare the effect of different eye movements on memory performance of pictures and also see whether its effect on memory, if any, differs between young and elderly people.

If you are interested in taking part in Megan’s research you can contact her direct at:
m.bennett@lancaster.ac.uk or call Megan on 07523071770.

23-11-13

Last week we made a visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre to view the current exhibition of work by Victoria Crowe.

Victoria studied at Kingston School of Art and the Royal College of Art, London, before being invited to join Edinburgh College of Art in 1968, where she taught drawing and painting until 1998.

Over the last 35 years Victoria Crowe, one of Scotland’s leading painters, has established herself as a painter whose work is instantly recognisable. While the full range of her painting covers landscape, still lifes, portraits, self-portraits and interiors, much of her work defies such precise categorisation. She has been described as ‘one of the most vital and original figurative painters currently at work in Scotland’. Her work is represented in a large number of public and private collections. She lives and works in the Scottish Borders and Venice.
If you would like to learn more about Victoria’s beautiful work, take a look at her website:
http://www.victoriacrowe.com/

The current exhibition runs till 12th December 2014.
After our visit to the exhibition we had a Research & Discussion Forum where we discussed the theme of ‘Legacy’.
The vibrant discussion was inspired by a number of our group members attending the screening of Effie Gray, the British biographical drama film directed by Richard Laxton and based on the life of Euphemia Chalmers Gray who was married to John Ruskin and latterly to Pre-Raphaelite painter, John Everett Millais.
The group began with a discussion of John Ruskin’s concept of legacy, and to what degree this had played a part in influencing the amount and type of output he produced. Attention was given to the single minded upbringing he received from his parents, who had a strong ideology around John’s importance in society from the start.
The discussion focused on the question of how much of our legacy is dictated by us? Or those left behind after our deaths (or indeed, as in Ruskin’s case, by those who went before). It was felt that legacy might vary, markedly, between the classes, with the wealthier in our society giving the concept a stronger role and leaving more of their assets behind, therefore reinforcing their legacy. The group explored how enduring one’s legacy might be along with, on the other hand, how brief it often is.

Digital legacy was also discussed, in particular the increasingly common situation of something commonly used by a living person on a day to day basis, later becoming a memorial or a point for expression for those connected to the person who has died.
Next Wednesday(26th November) Dr Mary Searle-Chatterjee of the Centre for Applied South Asian Studies will present her Lunchtime Lecture 'Travel Writing World-wide in Historical Perspective'.
Debates about the imperial and Eurocentric roots of modern western travel writing have often ignored traditions of travel writing in other parts of the world. The Greek, Chinese, Arab and Persian are the best known of these. Exploration of variations within and between traditions may help us to view our own writing traditions in a new light. It may also help us to consider why the genre of travel writing appears not to have emerged in certain eras, and regions.
You may recognise Mary as she is an attendee at some of our lectures and research groups. She also led a recent workshop in Lancaster on the wearing of the veil. Mary is a retired academic social anthropologist (with a passion for world history) from Manchester University. Her area of specialism has been South Asia. Travel writing is one of her current interests.
Mary's lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Travel Experiences'. Members are invited to bring along a short piece of writing describing a travel experience of interest to share with the group. Verbal contributions also welcome.
Mary’s lecture will start at 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 and will be followed by the R&DF at around 2.30pm




16-11-14
Last week Dr Hilary Walklett spoke to us about Victorian morality and immorality.

Hilary spoke about the time before the welfare state, when the poor relied on charity to live. This charity was generally inadequate and circumstances were often cruel. Families held strong Christian beliefs and Victorian life played out the tensions that existed between the religious imperative and rational pragmatism. There were occasional local government initiatives, as during the cotton famine of 1861-65 when local councils employed out of work cotton operatives to do other public work at a third of the usual pay, but for the most part, the poor in society were kept afloat by desperate measures, including widespread child labour.

Hilary went on to paint a colourful picture of the high moral standards which the Victorians aspired to, mixed with a seedy, often hidden side of widespread gambling, sexual infidelity and crime, frequently violent in nature.

The lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: A Re-emergence of Victorian Values?

Steering Group member Jean outlines the content of the forum…

‘The similarities between the values and attitudes of the 19th Century and today's moralising climate were striking. Parallels were drawn and impassioned views expressed as we looked at the stigmatising of 'have-nots', the tax obsessions of 'the haves', the non- conformist religious underpinning of self-help regimes and the dependence on charitable institutions to meet the needs of those who are disadvantaged. Prostitution, drug addiction and alcohol abuse thrive still, and incarceration persists as a means of maintaining social order. Today, we agreed, it is the influence of the media, reinforcing notions of deserving or undeserving need, which was instrumental in generating judgmental attitudes, perhaps replacing the authority of the clergy in former times. So little change, then, in a hundred and fifty years? But good will and generosity are much more evident now. The response to recent appeals in support of Ebola victims and children in need, in a time of obvious financial hardship, clearly illustrate a sympathy, a desire to help others. We want to believe inherent goodness prevails. Back then, only industrial magnates could afford that level of philanthropy. So is there a distinction here? Or perhaps we have always acted in our own self-interest, actually. This thought-provoking observation ended our discussion, but plenty of material remains here for another day.’

I have posted Hilary’s wonderful lecture to the website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (19th November) we will visit the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre on campus to see the Current Exhibition ‘Permanence and Fragility: Paintings and Drawings by Victoria Crowe’

Victoria Crowe is well known for portraits of artists, writers and scientists including the poet Kathleen Raine (National Portrait Gallery), actor Graham Crowden (Scottish NPG) and most recently Prof. Peter Higgs, for the Royal Society of Edinburgh. She is a member of the Royal Scottish Academy, and was appointed OBE in 2004.

More widely, her work embraces both figure and landscape, often in striking combination. The series A Shepherd’s Life (1970-1985) focuses on life in the Scottish Borders, and one subject has been converted into tapestry by Dovecot Studios in Edinburgh.
She has a passion for the natural world, and also spends much time in Venice, which has inspired large paintings redolent with images of the city’s buildings and history. These interests echo those of John Ruskin, and this exhibition of past and recent work will offer many points of connection.

Please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin Centre, on the roundabout at the top of the drive on campus at 12.50 for a guided tour at 1pm.
The Ruskin Centre visit will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Thinking About our Legacy'.
Following on from the screening of Emma Thompson’s film on Effie Gray, Ruskin’s wife, at The Dukes (currently showing, with an older person’s screening taking place on Monday 17th November at 11am, join us if you like!), we intend to look at how we might choose to be remembered; how history will record our existence; what our legacy might be…..and what we can do about it.

The R&DF will take place after the Gallery tour (at around 2.30pm) in our usual lecture theatre, Fylde LT3.


10-11-14

Last week Rory Daly, Placements and Internships Manager at Lancaster University, presented his lecture 'What will Work Look Like in the Year 2065? A Challenge for Universities and their Students’.

It was great to have Rory back with the CLG where he explained to us how universities are aiming to tackle the increasingly changing world of work. Rory began by drawing our attention to the extent of change which has taken place over the last 50 years and how these changes could not possibly have figured in our imaginations back then. We viewed two pieces of film focussing on work. One, made around 50 years ago, showed female secretaries in a firm working intently with filing cabinets and index cards. The narrow focus of the tasks they were carrying out being clearly evident. The second piece of film, a contemporary piece produced by the Google Company, showed the working environment as a place to play. The focus in this case was on the fun things incorporated into the environment and the things which the company put in place for its employees such as exercise space, relaxation space and laundry services. This was clearly a very different world where the worker is treated more like a small child than an adult. The second film did not in any way focus on actual work and was more about lifestyle aspiration. Clearly the world of work is a place of constant and unpredictable transition, which will continue to change almost beyond recognition over the coming decades. Workload looks set to rise as technology facilitates much of what happens in the workplace. Rory did a great job of illustrating how universities might prepare students to acquire transferable skills to meet the requirements of job roles we cannot even conceive of at present.

After the lecture we further discussed the theme in the Research & Discussion Forum. Steering Group member Jean, who chairs the RDF, outlines the discussion…

‘The word 'shocking' best describes the emotional response to the revealing lecture by Rory Daly. But then our verbal contributions led to an almost palpable relief that most of us were retired! However, the plight of our descendants, many of whom would perhaps not be characterised as ' High Fliers', but destined to work long hours on low pay, with constraints on their life styles and life choices, and possibly little, if any, prospect of retirement or pensions, focused our thinking. We concluded that the rapacious nature of capitalism, the incessant drive for more and more growth would, in the next forty years, be seriously challenged by inherent flaws or by some natural catastrophe triggered by climate change - or both! To relieve a somewhat depressing atmosphere, I shared a quote from Douglas Pagel's 'These are the Gifts I'd Like to Give You’, to remind us there is more to life -
“Sometimes it's important to work for that pot of gold. But other times it's essential to take time off and to make sure that your most important decision in the day simply consists of choosing which colour to slide down on the rainbow".

I will post the audio of Rory’s lecture here later in the week:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (12th November) Historian, Dr Hilary Walklett, presents his Lunchtime Lecture 'Victorian Morality and Non-morality'.

Following on from his fascinating recent Lunchtime Lectures on the subject of Russia, Hilary returns with a very different lecture focussing on Victorian morality. There is a widely-held belief that Victorian Society was prudish and hypocritical, saying one thing in public and doing the opposite behind closed doors. This lecture gives an overview of the reality behind this accusation, to see what society really felt – and did - about sex, marriage, religion, violence, alcohol and drugs. Hilary will also examine the variety of attitudes of different sectors of society about what was “proper” and what they thought of each other’s morals – or lack of them - which led, inter alia, to a great concern by the middle-classes for the morals and behaviour of the lower classes."

Hilary’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'A Re-emergence of Victorian Values?'
Are contemporary politics attempting to restore Victorian Values in society? Are we becoming a nation of deserving and undeserving citizens as defined by the media? What do you think? Come along and have your say.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm

I’m pleased to announce that the CLG, in addition to our popular website and our Facebook group, now have a Twitter account. This allows us to widely publicise our lectures, discussions and events. It also means that other Twitter users can retweet our posts, resulting in a very wide dispersal of information indeed. Our posts are often retweeted by Lancaster University, which means that they appear in the Twitter feeds of all Lancaster University followers, over 28,000 people in total. We aim to post regularly and to co-operate with other like-minded organisations to publicise a whole range of topics of interest to older people. If you are a Twitter user and would like to follow us, you can find us as ‘CLG_tweets’.


02-11-14

Last Wednesday we viewed the Ken Loach film ‘The Spirit of ‘45’. This documentary focussed on and celebrated the radical changes which took place in post-war Britain under the Labour government of Clement Atlee, which came to power in 1945. The film took the form of a documentary using archive footage and contemporary interviews, exploring the extreme poverty which was rife in pre-war Britain, the sense of optimism resulting from victory in the Second World War and the subsequent expansion of the welfare state. Particular attention was given to the formation of the National Health Service and the nationalisation of many of the major industries. Loach went on to focus on the radical changes made by the Conservative governments of Margaret Thatcher, resulting in widespread and sustained unemployment, the deregulation of the financial institutions and, ultimately, the entrenchment of many of the socio-economic problems which have, unfortunately, become so familiar in Britain today.
During the Research & Discussion Forum which followed, attendees reflected on the film’s content and discussed whether we could, or should rekindle the spirit of the post world war age. There were mixed emotions; horror at the state of the nation; disgust at the living conditions for working class people; nostalgia and pride at the progressive changes inspired by the Beveridge Report. There was also sadness that the momentum was not sustained. Could that collective energy be harnessed again for the benefit of society? The passionate discussion explored the disintegration of social structures, the emasculation of the Unions, the rise of individualism, the erosion of class boundaries and the absence of 'Marshall Plan' funding for a modern age. Despite a general appreciation of the values of the post-war era, the group concluded that the strength of Capitalism and the lack of cohesive structures in society made the prospects of regenerating the spirit of '45 very remote indeed.
This coming Wednesday (5th November) Rory Daly, Placements and Internships Manager, Lancaster University presents his Lunchtime Lecture, 'What will Work Look Like in the Year 2065? A Challenge for Universities and their Students'.
Rory is a graduate of Lancaster University having completed a BA in Politics and Philosophy and an MA in Applied Research and Consultancy. He has worked at the University in student facing roles since 2005, focusing on academic and soft skills development, coaching, and recruitment. With a particular interest in diversity issues, and community based learning, Rory is a member of the AGCAS Diversity Task Group.
This year’s graduates will approach retirement in 2065. With developments in technology and the changing demands on employees, what should universities do to prepare their students for this work environment and what are the implications for our students’ graduates careers? What are the potential impacts of these changes for those that use services provided by graduates?
You may know Rory, he has been involved with our programme in a supportive role over a numbers of years.
Rory’s lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'The Future of Work'
We will explore the implications of approaching changes in working age, practices and pensions for the lifestyle and expectations of older people.
Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm.
We have some interesting research opportunities to pass on to you.
Researcher, Megan Bennett says...
As part of my undergraduate degree in psychology, I am completing research on the effect of different eye movements, on memory performance in the young and elderly. I am looking for participants aged between 18-25 and 55-95 and you are invited to participate.
Current research on the effect of eye movements on memory performance, has involved adults or young people, using words as stimuli. This research aims to replicate these findings and extend this topic area to the elderly, using pictures. Specifically this research aims to compare the effect of different eye movements on memory performance of pictures and also see whether its effect on memory, if any, differs between young and elderly people.
If you are interested in taking part in Megan’s research,
or you can contact her direct at:
m.bennett@lancaster.ac.uk
or call Megan on 07523071770
Or you might be interested, or know someone who would be interested, in taking part in Charlotte Ingham’s research project…
Are you 65 or over? Female? Do you identify as non-heterosexual? Or have you ever been in a same-sex relationship?
I am conducting a study into the experiences of women who have been bereaved by the loss if a same sex partner.
It is hoped that this study can:
-Help shape future services
-Ensure services are providing the best support for people 65 and over who have lost a same-sex partner.
-Increase society’s understandings of partner loss in same-sex relationships
My name is Charlotte Ingham and I’m a Trainee Clinical Psychologist. If you are interested in taking part in this study, you can contact Charlotte at c.ingham@lancaster.ac.uk or call Charlotte on 07508375658
If you want to know more about these research projects, you can read about them here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28K%29+We+Help+Researchers


26-10-14

Last Wednesday, Diane Armstrong from Age UK came to visit us to discuss the ‘Dementia Friends’ project.

This worthwhile project aims to bring a greater understanding of dementia to the wider population through dissemination of information and discussion. People with dementia get by with a little help from their friends, and anybody can become a Dementia Friend. It’s just about understanding a bit more about dementia and the small things you can do to help people with the condition.

People with dementia want to carry on going about their daily lives and feeling included in their local community, but they sometimes need a helping hand to do so. Dementia Friends learn a little bit about what it's like to live with dementia and turns that understanding into action. This could be helping someone find the right bus or being patient in a till queue if someone with dementia is taking longer to pay. Every action counts.

Being a Dementia Friend isn’t about volunteering or fundraising (though you can do that too if you want).

To become a friend you just need to watch the ‘Dementia Friends’ short video or join an information session in your area. This is a valuable first step towards gaining some tools needed to deal with this condition. Why not check out the Dementia Friends website and learn more!

https://www.dementiafriends.org.uk/Home

The lecture was followed by a vibrant discussion around the subject. Attendees looked at the change of status in society of older people and those who work with them. A number of valid points were made including: the crisis stage is not the time to put things in place, limitations on provision add extra strain onto carers, the home environment takes on a non-homely aspect and modern, Western family structures do not accommodate dementia as well as they might. This was a well attended group discussion consisting of those currently dealing with dementia, those who have yet to come into contact with dementia and also some younger people who have vocational experience in this field.

This coming Wednesday (29th October 2014) in our Lunchtime Lecture slot, we will be viewing the Ken Loach film - The Spirit of '45.

'1945 was a pivotal year in British History. The unity that carried Britain through the war allied to the bitter memories of the inter-war years led to a vision of a better society. The spirit of the age was to be our brother's and our sister's keeper.

Director Ken Loach has used film from Britain's regional and national archives, alongside sound recordings and contemporary interviews to create a rich political and social narrative. The Spirit of '45 hopes to illuminate and celebrate a period of unprecedented community spirit in the UK, the impact of which endured for many years and which may yet be rediscovered today.'

The screening will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: ' The Spirit of '45 '.
We reflect on the content of Ken Loach's film and discuss whether we could, or should rekindle the spirit of the post world war age.

The viewing will commence at 1pm in the usual venue (Fylde Lecture Theatre 3) with the discussion taking place in the same room.


19-10-14

Last week Dr Brian Hodgson of the Lancaster University Ruskin Centre presented us with his Lunchtime Lecture, 'Seating from Antiquity'.
Brian began with an outline of his doctorate, and explained how he moved his focus from the Arts & Crafts movement to the Gothic idiom. He then went on to show us the fundamental seating designs which have endured, in one form or another, over the centuries. This was an interesting journey, accompanied by photographs to illustrate his points. We were able to see the variations introduced to the styles, making them more suitable for use, and we debated the production techniques used in ancient times from artistic illustrations from ancient Egypt.

Brian’s lecture was enlightening in terms of design and form. He vividly illuminated the subject for us all and in doing so, created a comfortable atmosphere for discussion and a good question and answer session was enjoyed by the group.

If you would like to listen to Brian’s lecture, you can do so via this link, I will add some photos to enhance the lecture over the coming weeks:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Brian’s lecture was then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum. The forum revisited the Scottish Referendum - the process, the politics and the implications for nationwide constitutional change. A vocal flow of impressions ensued; from the menacing undertones of nationalism to flamboyant displays of enthusiasm; fine statesmanship to desperate political interventions; arrogant complacency to energetic visions of an attainable future. A decentralised model of governance south of the border was then explored with cautionary tales from a bygone age finding voice alongside ideas on devolution. No consensus, much passion and just a sprinkling of cynicism!

This coming Wednesday (22nd October) Diane Armstrong of Age UK will present her Lunchtime Lecture, 'Becoming a Dementia Friend'.

The Dementia Friends website states...
'People with dementia get by with a little help from their friends. And anybody can become a Dementia Friend. It’s just about understanding a bit more about dementia and the small things you can do to help people with the condition.
People with dementia want to carry on going about their daily lives and feeling included in their local community, but they sometimes need a helping hand to do so. Dementia Friends learn a little bit about what it's like to live with dementia and turns that understanding into action. This could be helping someone find the right bus or being patient in a till queue if someone with dementia is taking longer to pay.
Every action counts.'

Why not come along and find out more about this worthwhile project, which has now gained over 400,000 participants!

The lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Living with Dementia'.
We will share our experiences of caring for or about someone with Dementia and look at how local support might be improved. If you do not have any experience of dealing with dementia, you will still be welcome to take part in the discussion. We aim to increase awareness around this debilitating condition and help in the process of creating a wider understanding and promoting a free flow of information.

The Lunchtime Lecture will commence at 1pm with the Research & Discussion Forum following at 2.45. Both will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3

12-10-14

Our term got off to an excellent start last week as Frances Sapsford, Neurological Physiotherapist and Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy at University of Cumbria, presented her Lunchtime Lecture on Neuroplasticity to a packed lecture theatre.

For many years, we believed the brain to be an inflexible organ with certain areas being slavishly dedicated to certain functions. We also believed the brain’s processes where formed early in life and were, from then on, set in stone. We now realise that the brain is extremely flexible in how it operates and that, in fact, we continue to lay down new neurological pathways throughout our lives. This clearly has implications for the brain and its function after trauma, stroke or other damage. In her lecture Frances outlined the possibilities and some of the experiments that have been carried out, leading to a greater understanding of what can be achieved when important aspects of brain function have been lost.

I would like to thank Frances for a wonderful and informative lecture which was both inspiring and, in many ways, reassuring. If you missed this lecture, then you can listen to it here:

http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Frances’ lecture was followed by the Research & Discussion Forum where a group of fifteen attendees engaged in a lively discussion on how we cope more from a psychological perspective with change, emotional, cultural, social or technological. It was acknowledged that the sheer pace of change as we age seems daunting, but aided by extracts from works by Piotr Sztompka, Adam Dachis and Rhoda P. Curtis and with reference to Alvin Toffler’s seminal ‘Future Shock’, we navigated our way through a range of ideas and experiences, some highly amusing. We concluded that free from the constraints of formal employment and the apparent ‘obsession’ with unremitting change, we, in our later years, could afford to be more selective about which change we embraced, and be philosophical about the consequences if we choose to defy it.

This coming Wednesday (15th October) Dr Brian Hodgson of the Lancaster University Ruskin Centre will give his Lunchtime Lecture entitled 'Seating from Antiquity'.

‘In this lecture an investigation will be made of Egyptian, Greek and Roman seating furniture. The three main proto-types will be traced through the Middle Ages and into the Tudor and Jacobean era. Because we have no existing examples of the very earliest seats a study of wall painting from Egyptian tombs and sculpture from Greece will need to be examined. Some of the earliest British seating furniture still around is found in cathedrals and other ecclesiastical structures. Stools, chairs, settles and thrones all stem from the ancient three proto-types and we still employ these master designs today.’

We are very pleased to welcome back Brian, who has recently completed his PhD. here at Lancaster University.

Brian’s Lecture will be followed by a Research & Discussion Forum 'The Referendum on Independence for Scotland'. Now we have the result, our passions have been stirred by the process. We explore the impact of the referendum.

Both events will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3, with the lecture starting at 1pm and the discussion forum starting at 2.45pm.

We have information regarding an opportunity to be involved with some interesting on-campus research.

Claire Kelly, a PhD student in Psychology is looking for volunteers (aged 18-90 years) for a research study titled ‘Sequential cognitive task performance’

As part of her PhD, Claire is conducting a study at Lancaster University, which aims to investigate the effect of completing two or more cognitive tasks in close succession. The study lasts approximately 30 minutes and involves completing two or more tasks that assess your cognitive performance, one of which might include an eye tracking task. Detailed instructions and information about each task will be provided at the beginning of the study and before each task. Your results will be strictly confidential and will not be name identifiable. Participation is voluntary and therefore you have the right to withdraw your consent at any time during the study.

Unfortunately, there is no availability of funds for travel expenses but Claire can arrange to see people on Wednesdays (whilst attending the CLG) or any time participants happen to be on campus.

If you would like any further information and/or would be interested in being a participant in this study please contact Claire by email: c.kelly1@lancaster.ac.uk

Also:

More participants are required to take part in the interview process for next year’s intake of medical students. Applicants should have experience of being a patient and be available for one or two full days between December and February. Attendance allowance and travel expenses will be paid. Lunch is provided. The organisers would particularly like to hear from men. If you are interested in being involved then just drop us an email to seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk or speak to Steering Group members Janet Ross-Mills or Irene McGill at the Lunchtime Lecture.






22-06-14
Last week visiting lecturer Franco Manni spoke to us about his stay here in England and shared some of the things he has learnt and observations he has made during his time with us.

Franco spoke of the way the English are viewed in Italy, and how that has, in many cases, proved to be inaccurate. He told us of the characters from British history who have made the strongest impression on him and he explored some of our idiosyncrasies.

Franco then went on to talk about the British philosophers, detailing the strengths and weaknesses which they have brought to international philosophy and lamenting the lack of philosophical content in mainstream British schooling.

He praised the media in the UK for its quality and variety, and touched on this country’s commemorations of the two world wars, noting how the English tend towards remembrance of the wars and the huge and terrible losses incurred, in contrast to Italy’s tendency more towards forgetting.

We heard how difficult our language is to learn, despite Franco’s long term familiarity with written English, he explained how he can still be caught out by its unpredictable nature. The breadth and variety of sources being quite remarkable for a single language, adding to its complicated nature but also to its richness.

The structure and workings of British families came under discussion, as did the intergenerational character of our social lives. Equal marriage and gender issues in the UK were also touched upon.

The level of equality and inclusivity came up for praise in regard to Franco’s experience of the Church of England and a number of other organisations Franco has visited over the last 10 months. Observations, both good and bad, of the higher education system in this country were also made.

If you would like to listen to this Lunchtime Lecture, or read the transcript, you can do so via our website:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

Franco will leave us at the end of this month, and I would like to take this chance to say what a pleasure it has been having him here since September of last year. He has been a valuable member of our Steering Group, bringing good ideas and a fresh perspective to the work we do. Having worked hard to increase our numbers and make people more aware that we exist, Franco has successfully navigated his way through a culture quite different to his own, and at times I know it has not been easy for him. Above all Franco has become a valuable friend to us; we will miss him a great deal. I would like to thank him for what he has given us and I hope we have been able to make his stay here in Lancaster a good one. We hope that he will return to pursue his education and research, hopefully embarking on a PhD in this country in the not-too-distant future. Good luck Franco!

This coming week is our last week of term and the last week of this academic year. How quickly it has arrived! We will end the term on Wednesday 25th June with a visit to the Lancaster Ruskin Library and Gallery on campus to visit the current exhibition 'This Mountain Paradise: Ruskin on the Continent, 1835’

“By the time of the Ruskin family’s continental tour lasting from 2 June to 10 December 1835, the sixteen-year-old John Ruskin (1819-1900) was already a seasoned traveller. Taken by his parents John James and Margaret Ruskin to Scotland, the Lake District, Wales, the west of England and Kent between 1826 and 1832, he had also been with them to Paris and Brussels (including the field of Waterloo, in 1825) and across the Alps as far as Milan and Genoa in 1833. The 1835 itinerary helped to establish what would become Ruskin’s ‘old road,’ a familiar route through France and Switzerland into Italy.”

Please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin building on campus in the run up to 1pm. Thanks.

We will follow the viewing of the exhibition with a Jacob’s Join in Fylde A30 (close to our usual lecture theatre LT3, it’s actually diagonally opposite across Fylde College courtyard. You can find a map here: http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/home ). This will give us all a chance to reflect on the year, before we all go our separate ways for the summer.

It has been quite a year, with some outstanding Lunchtime Lectures, Research Circles and group discussions. I would also like to acknowledge the valued contribution made by our group member and friend, Susan, who sadly passed away earlier this term. We all miss her and remember her fondly.

I’d like to thank all those who took part in this year’s programme. If you would have liked to take part but were unable to do so, don’t worry. You are welcome any time, we will be happy to see you.

Have a great summer and we’ll do it all again in October.

Best wishes from myself and the other Steering Group members: George, Jean, Jill, Janet, Irene, Franco and Rita.

Regards,

Dave and the CLG Steering Group.


15-06-14

Last week Hilary Walklate concluded his two-part series of lectures on Lenin.


In this lecture, Hilary discussed the February revolution, resulting in Alexander Kerensky’s Provisional Government which ran until October of the same year. We were told of Lenin’s travels across Europe, facilitated by Germany and his time in Scandinavia. Lenin’s promise of ‘Peace, Land and Bread’ came up for discussion and the consequential rise in Bolshevik party membership from a couple of thousand in March 1917 to around half a million by October. General Kornilov’s aspirations to carry out a coup against Kerensky’s government, Kerensky’s arming of the Bolsheviks and the subsequent outcome for the provisional government was expertly told by Hilary. We also heard of the difficulties faced by the Russian people when the initial euphoria of revolution gave way to the realities of a new Russia.

You can hear the second of Hilary’s lectures here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

After the lecture, Hilary kindly stayed with the group for a discussion around the subjects of WWI and WWII and the effects these events had on our lives. The discussion was vibrant and interesting with a focus on the outcome of the two wars on family members and the psyche of the nations involved in the conflicts. The quality of the discussion being enhanced by the presence of our Italian volunteer, Franco and a German lady, Karin, who was visiting Lancaster as part of her involvement in the Memory Project. Both brought valuable contributions which made the discussion all the more pertinent to us all. Many thanks to those who took part.

This coming Wednesday (18th June) Franco will give his Lunchtime Lecture entitled ‘England as Seen by an Italian’, where he will talk with us about the things he’s observed and learned in his time here in Lancaster. Franco will leave us at the end of the month and we are looking forward to hearing what knowledge he has gained whilst here in Lancaster. Franco will discuss his feelings about British culture and society, looking at differences between the UK and Italy in terms of literature, family, inter-generational mixing, multiculturalism and more.

Following Franco’s lecture, in the Research Circle slot, there will be a chance to discuss themes for inclusion in the new Research & Discussion Forum, which will officially launch next academic year. We see this as an exciting chance for group members to contribute to the programme, both in terms of topics for discussion and also in contributing to the discussions. The taster sessions which have taken place this term have shown the great potential of the new format. If you are unable to attend this session, but wish to suggest a topic, just email it to us at seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk and we will consider it for inclusion in the programme.


Thanks.

08-06-14

Last week Dr Hilary Walklate gave the first of two lectures on Vladimir Lenin. Hilary told us of Lenin’s middle class background in Simbirsk, his great intellect (evident from early childhood) and his hero worship of his brother Aleksandr Ulyanov. We were told how Aleksandr’s involvement in political events, namely a plot to assassinate Alexander III, led to him, and four of his comrades, being hanged in Shlisselburg. This had a huge effect on Lenin and added greatly to his developing sense of class consciousness.

As Lenin became more politically orientated, liberal associates began to distance themselves from the family and the Russian secret police began to take a greater interest. At university Lenin had few friends. After being involved in a demonstration, Lenin was (wrongly) identified as the ringleader and was expelled from university. He then studied alone before attaining the equivalent of a first class degree with honours in law in 1890.

Hilary went on to explain how Lenin moved from Populism to Marxism, becoming a committed Marxist, and in doing so, created a defining form of Russian Marxism. Hilary explained how Lenin’s political thought was closely linked with the industrialisation which was taking place in Russia at that time. After being arrested for producing and distributing political pamphlets, Lenin spent a year in prison and 5 years in Siberia. During this time he continued to send out political material concealed as coded messages in books.

Lenin’s political development was discussed, along with his analytic work and theoretical output, with attention being given to the political and economic context within which Lenin’s ideas took shape. Hilary’s primary lecture on Lenin was thorough and very enjoyable, we look forward to part two next week.

You can hear this first part here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

We have exciting new developments regarding the Research Circle. Due to the changing nature of the research part of our programme, we are developing the circle into a more relevant and flexible forum which allows for vibrant discussion groups as well as organised, single-focus research projects similar to the recent ‘Memory Project’. The discussion part of the forum will give group members a chance to explore a broad range of themes ranging from topical issues (like the recent discussions on the subject of the European Elections and Dying Matters Week), social and political developments (like the recent discussion around possible changes to availability of medications) and any themes which group members would like to explore. We hope to have a timetable in place, so that group members will be able to know what discussions are coming up. So, we are currently putting out a call to all of you to let us know what themes you would like to discuss in the future. What themes interest you? What subjects do you think will provide us with food for thought and make for lively discussion? Drop us an email to seniorlearners@lancaster.ac.uk and we will timetable it in for our next academic year. Thanks.

Don’t forget Hilary’s second lecture this coming Wednesday (11th June), which will be followed, in the Research Circle slot, by a discussion based on the two lectures.

Events run from 1pm in our usual room, Fylde Lecture Theatre 3.

Hope you can join us.



01-06-14

Last week Peter Schofield of the Lancaster branch of the Oxford Archaeology organisation visited us and presented us with an interesting Lunchtime Lecture based around landscape archaeology with a particular focus on some recent community archaeology projects.

Firstly, we heard how landscape archaeology differs from the type of archaeology we are mostly familiar with. Landscape archaeology looks at artifacts which indicate the use of land over time. It deals with ruined buildings as well as integral landscape features which are indicative of its use. This type of archaeology is often undertaken by landowners/ land keepers who wish to gain a fuller understanding of their land in order to preserve it, or just to help them avoid damaging its integrity. It produces data which provides an extremely important key to understanding our past.

Peter explained how there are levels of landscape archaeology, from basic observation of the landscape, often undertaken by groups of volunteers, to thorough and comprehensive studies which take all details into account. A thorough study requires a professional knowledge of the craft and employs delicate tools and, often, computer technology.

Peter also showed us some recent projects which have taken place around Windermere and Hadrian’s Wall. He showed us the remains of important quarries, standing stones and cairn fields. There were also impressive photographs taken by remote controlled aerial vehicle, showing how 21st century technology plays an important part in gaining a better understanding of our environment.

Peter was very kind in offering his services to the CLG. He has supplied us with lovely photos for our website and helped to inspire us to gain a better understanding of the fascinating environment around us. If you have an interest in learning more on this subject,why not take a look at Peter’s excellent internet blog:
http://uplandpete.wordpress.com/

You can listen to the lecture here:
http://senior-learners-forum.wikispaces.com/%28E%29+Recordings+of+Lectures

This coming Wednesday (4th June) historian Dr Hilary Walklate returns with the first part of a double lecture on the life and times of Vladimir Ilych Lenin.