LIon-Front--edit-4.gifLectures this term will take place in

Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 from 1pm to 2.30pm.

(unless otherwise stated)

Each lecture will be followed by a vibrant Research & Discussion Forum.

More information on this part of the afternoon can be found here.

Up-to-date information will be added to this page continually as we get confirmation.

Please keep checking back.

Due to current funding issues, we welcome a voluntary donation of £1 per lecture from attendees to cover admin costs and help keep the programme running.

Forthcoming Lectures...

Academic Year 2017/2018

Here's a sneak preview of our confirmed Lunchtime Lectures for this term. This list will be updated in due course.

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25th April 2018 - Peter Reilly, formerly of Lancaster University and retired teacher of economics, politics and business studies.

'Land Value Taxation'

Peter Reilly, former graduate from Lancaster University and retired teacher of economics, politics and business studies will be giving a presentation to the Senior Learner’s group on the subject of tackling income and wealth inequality.

Why is the gap between the rich and poor growing? Is it inevitable in the capitalist system? How far are current government policies responsible? How far can Labour Party policies significantly reduce inequalities without adversely affecting incentives?

Peter will show how economic growth inevitably leads to a redistribution of wealth because economic growth leads to increased land values, and the majority of the land is owned by a small minority of the population. (70% of England is owned by just 1% of the population). Policies to promote growth increases demand for the limited supply of land, driving up its price and benefiting landowners at the expense of others. Public investment in infrastructure, services and amenities actually drives up land prices. Where the taxpayer sews, the landowners reap.

Until this is addressed, wealth inequality is bound to grow. Peter Reilly, who has studied property taxes will be putting the case for a system of land value taxation to regain these land values for the public purse.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


2nd May 2018 - Ryan Evans, PhD Student, Department: English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University

'The Green Crow: An Introduction to the Life and Drama of Sean O' Casey'

When you think of great Irish writers, who comes to mind? Oscar Wilde? John Millington Synge? William Butler Yeats? Samuel Beckett? What about Sean O'Casey, who saved the Irish national theatre from collapse, who was the inspiration of Samuell Beckett, and whom W.B. Yeats defended so valiantly from the stage? In this lecture, Ryan will discuss the life of Sean O'Casey and his brilliant, and often controversial, drama.

Please note: This is a reschedule of the lecture which was planned for 14th March 2018

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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9th May 2018 - Dr Marcia Smith, Research Associate, Lancaster University Management School.

'Co-creating an App with Older Adults in a Rural Community to Reduce Social Isolation and Loneliness.'

Marcia will present Mobile Age, the research project she are conducting in South Lakeland, Cumbria. She will explain her experience of co-creating mobile apps with older adults with the objective to reduce social isolation and loneliness. Marcia will share her learning so far and demonstrate the apps that she has developed.

' My research aims to understand how the confluence of digital innovations and a culture of co-creation is affecting the clothing industry. The main focus is on how new models of businesses and services could instigate amateurs to create their own clothes with the help of digital innovations.
I am a third year PhD student at the HighWire Doctoral Training Centre at Lancaster University. I returned to University in 2008, when I joined the Master course in Design Management and Policy at LICA, Lancaster University. Straight after the MA Design course finished, I enrolled in the HighWire programme where I research, from a post-disciplinary perspective, the issues in the digital economy around how we plan, design and build our digital futures.

I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and started my career as a graphic designer after I graduated in Visual Communication at PUC-RIO. My experience as a designer include working as a trainee art director at the advertising agency JWT - Rio, working as a senior graphic designer in a NHS health promotion agency in South London and running my own studio as a freelance graphic designer.'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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16th May 2018 - Dying Matters Event - Dr Amy Gadoud, consultant in palliative care, researcher at the International Observatory on End of Life Care, Lancaster University.

'Dying Matters- A Doctors Point of View'

Amy’s clinical and research interests are in ensuring good palliative care to all who need it. She especially focuses on palliative care for people with conditions other than cancer such as serious heart and chest diseases. As part of dying matters week she wishes to open a conversation with the public about death and dying in order to breakdown some of the taboos in society about this topic.

' I am a consultant in palliative medicine at Cumbria Partnership and have funded research time as an honorary senior lecturer at the International Observatory on End of Life Care, Lancaster University. I was (2013-2016) a NIHR clinical lecturer at Hull York Medical School. I have been an invited speaker at Kings College, London, University of Liverpool & University of Sheffield. I have obtained research funding from major bodies e.g. NIHR and Academy of Medical Sciences. My research interest is palliative care for people with heart failure and use a range of research methods from analysing large datasets to qualitative studies.'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


23rd May 2018 - The CLG will be hosting a community event in Morecambe...

Lancaster University Continuing Learning Group in conjunction with Lancaster University Centre for Ageing Research
Active Ageing On The Bay
A chance to explore improving well-being with learning and activity
Wednesday 23rd May 2018
12:30 till 4:00
Morecambe War Memorial Hall
Church St, Morecambe, LA4 5QD

This is a free event, open to all.

Welcome Luncheon

Freshly made soup, sandwiches, hot & cold refreshments.


Opening Discourse

Dr Lawrence D Hayes

(Lecturer in Exercise Physiology, University of Cumbria)

Dr Michelle Swainson

(Lecturer in Physiology, Lancaster University)

Both are members of the Active Ageing Research Group with the Department of Sports Sciences, University of Cumbria.

Erik Worsley

(Active Lives Manager, Salt Ayre Sports Centre, Lancaster City Council)

Ceri Mumford

(Lancaster Alexander Technique)

Ann Marie Flynn

(Yoga teacher)


For refreshments

Dr Emmanuel Tsekleves

(Ageing Playfully, Imagination Lancaster)

Digital Presentation

Janet Ross-Mills

(Paddlers for Life, CLG Steering Group Member)

Cllr Margaret Pattison

(Morecambe Town Council, Lancaster City Council,

Morecambe’s Beautiful Back Alley Campaign)

Supported by:
Morecambe Town CouncilUniversity of CumbriaLancaster Alexander TechniquePaddlers for LifeLancaster City CouncilLancaster University

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30th May 2018 - Dr Kathryn Mackay, Lecturer, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.

'Truth, Trust and Propaganda'

I am interested in issues at the intersection of feminist theory, political philosophy, and moral theory. I spent five years working in health promotion policy before completing my PhD, and this experience informs my work. My research focuses on issues related to social justice, truth-telling, social and personal identity, authenticity and agency, and issues at the margins of society. My most recent work has focused on public health promotion campaigns (specifically around obesity), the way that these manipulate the political discourse, and how they undermine and distract from government responsibilities to citizens. I am currently working on authenticity and normative authority in 'agency dilemma' cases, and on health promotion campaigns as propaganda.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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6th June 2018 - Franco Manni, Former CLG Steering Group member and current PhD student, Kings College London..

'Herbert McCabe and his Legacy'

Only some professional Anglophone theologians know McCabe. He was not an academic, he did not write books, his works have not been translated and, even though he was even better in philosophy than he was in theology, philosophers of today do not know him. However, some distinguished intellectuals were influenced by him, such as Alasdair MacIntyre, Terry Eagleton and Rowan Williams. His speech and prose were persuasive at the highest degree.

In this lecture Franco will present a few of his paradoxical and deep ideas: because God is omnipotent, he does not make any change in the universe; the brain is not the organ of human thought; without love you cannot live, but if you love enough you will be killed.

Many of you will know Franco from the work he has done with the CLG in the past including some excellent lectures. We are very pleased to be able to welcome Franco back to present his lecture on McCabe.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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13th June 2018 - Dr Michelle Swainson, Lecturer in Physiology, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University.

'Should Fitness be a Clinical Vital Sign?'

This talk will provide an evidence-based insight into the associations between cardiorespiratory fitness and several health and medical conditions, as well as highlighting the links between fitness and mortality. Fitness is not routinely assessed in clinical practice but this presentation aims to make the case that it should be considered as a clinical vital sign.

' My main research interests are within the field of exercise physiology and preventive health, especially focused on the associations between
fitness, fatness and cardio-metabolic risk This interest spans healthy adults, retired athletes as well as cardiac patients engaging in exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation. I am interested in the role of health screening to identify risk at a younger age, and promote the use of physical activity/exercise for both prevention and management of lifestyle-related conditions, particularly in middle-aged adults and those in sedentary workplaces. I also have a strong interest in methodologies used to determine and monitor obesity, focusing on DXA-derived visceral adipose tissue and measures of central adiposity, which is an area I am keen to advance in relation to cardio-metabolic diseases.'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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Instead The group will attend the Art Student's Degree Exhibition.

Please meet in the foyer of the Great Hall on campus on 20th June, in the run-up to 1pm.

Thank you for your understanding.

20th June 2018 -Trip to Harewood House.

Following on from Dr Brian Hodgson's lectures on historic furniture construction techniques, we hope to take a trip to Harewood House in West Yorkshire to explore the furniture of Thomas Chippendale. This trip is subject to adequate numbers wishing to attend. If you would like to join us to visit and learn more about the stunning Chippendale furniture contained therein, please drop us a message to and we will ba happy to have you come along.

Please note: You do not have to be an established CLG group member to join us on this excursion. Anyone with an interest in learning more about the house/ Chippendale furniture, is very welcome.

For more information on Harewood House:


27th June 2018 - Final session of the academic year.

Screening of 'Stephen Hawking: A Personal Journey'

We end the term, and the academic year, with a tribute to the late,great Stephen Hawking, who died earlier this year.

“My name is Stephen Hawking, for the past 50 years I have travelled the world studying and lecturing about time and space, this film is a personal journey through my life, told in my own words.
Come with me and I will tell you the story of how I became who I am.”

Made for PBS in 2013 and screened in 2014, ‘Stephen Hawking: A Personal Journey’ provides an intimate and revealing look at Stephen’s life. Told for the first time in Hawking’s own words and with unique access to his home and public life, this documentary provides a personal journey through Hawking’s world.

Following the documentary we will have a discussion of Stephen’s work and achievements.

Being our last session of the term, we also invite attendees to bring food and drink to share.

We will then go on to have our Annual General Meeting before we break up for the summer.

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17th January - Dr Sam Clark, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.
'Transformative Experience'

Some experiences—becoming a parent, fighting in a war, becoming seriously ill—are transformative in a double sense: (1) you can’t know what they’re like until you have them; and (2) you are changed by them—maybe so much that you’re a different person afterwards. This talk explores some examples and consequences of transformative experience.

Sam is interested in the self; in good and bad lives it might lead; in its reflexive powers and practices; in the roles of experience, reflection, and institutions in its development and success; and in how to do philosophy so as to advance our understanding of these issues.

These interests have lead Sam to think, write, and teach about capitalism and anarchism; utopias, dialogues, and autobiographies; well-being, pleasure, and self-realization; self-knowledge, self-interpretation, and self-command; the lives and experiences of monks, soldiers, hermits, and solo travellers; and the transformative effects of work and war.

His current work is philosophy of and through autobiography, and as part of it Sam has published articles in journals including Inquiry, Ratio, Res Publica, and The Journal of Applied Philosophy, and in the Blackwell Companion to John Stuart Mill. He is currently writing a book about autobiography, narrative, and self-realization, under the working title Good Lives: see

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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24th January - Dr Brian Hodgson, formerly of Lancaster University Ruskin Centre, member of The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3), member of CLG.
'Thomas Chippendale'

In this second of his lectures on Thomas Chippendale Brian will convey something of the materials and techniques he (or rather his workshop) used. We will look at his place in the Age of Mahogany, the importance of the Cabriol leg and his use of veneers in cabinet work. We will also look again at his Director and study his technical projection techniques.

We will also discuss a proposed future group visit to Dumfries House.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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31st January - Prof Gill Baynes, Former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria, CLG Steering Group Member.

'Unpacking the Human Genome Project'

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 us a lecture on the fascinating subject of the Human Genome Project.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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7th February - Janet Ross, CLG Steering Group Member.
'In search of the North West Passage.'

2018 is the 200 years Anniversary of the first British Scientific Expedition to the Arctic. Led by Captain John Ross, a forgotten hero of Victorian exploration. The expedition had the wrong equipment, an unsuitable crew and no clear leader, but led to many exciting discoveries including the location of the magnetic north pole and strategies for survival in the most inhospitable climate imaginable.

In this lecture, Steering Group member Janet will take us all on an exploration into the life and times of this fascinating explorer.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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14th February- Chris Coates and members of the Halton Senior Co-Housing Project .
'Senior Co-Housing'

Can co-housing for older people offer a convivial and sustainable life-style for older people in the 21st Century?

Chris is a time-served carpenter who now works as project manager on community based construction projects. He was part of the management team for the ground-breaking Cohousing project at Halton and has previously worked on projects for the Ecology Building society and Welfare State International.

Chris has been representing people as both a city and a county councillor in Lancaster district since 2003, and is well aware of public feelings towards the challenges and opportunities we face in achieving a sustainable society.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


21st February 2018 - Proto-type Theatre visit the CLG, Flyde Lecture Theatre 3 (usual venue)

'Rich Tea and Currency'

For the last year, Proto-type Theater have been making The Audit (Or Iceland, a modern myth), a theatre performance about money, global inequality, protest and power. The show premieres here at Lancaster Arts on the 27th Feb, and the company will be in residence with us from 19th – 27th Feb.

The company have made the show to help them think about the economic structures that govern our lives, and how are they affecting us and those around us. Along the way they've been talking to communities across the country to share experiences and widen the discussion.

Proto-type would like to host Rich Tea and Currency with the Continuing Learning Group at 1pm, on 21st Feb. It will be a discussion event with no agenda or objectives. They'd like to serve hot drinks, Rich Tea biscuits (and maybe even currant-cy-buns...) Rich Tea and Currency is an accessible, respectful and confidential space where a group comes together to discuss and freely share their thoughts around the difficult, and oft-times taboo subject of MONEY.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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Please Note:

This Lunchtime Lecture is postponed due to industrial action called by UCU. We will endeavour to reschedule this lecture at a later date.

28th February 2018 -Dr Penny Foulds, Honorary Researcher, Lancaster University.

'How to reduce your risk of dementia - The science behind the myths'

Ageing is the biggest risk factor for dementia and can't be changed. There are however lots of things you can do to reduce your risk.

You are never too young to develop good habits and start making healthy choices (if you’re not already doing so). Many people use changes in their lives – children moving out, a health scare, divorce or retiring – as a prompt to start living more healthily. In this lecture, I will talk about what is thought to be a risk factor, and then look at the scientific evidence that it actually is!

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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7th March 2018 - CLG visit to Campus in the City, St. Nicholas Arcades (St. Nics), Lancaster City Centre.

Street Law - Protecting Yourself Against Scams and Rogue Traders.

Meet at Vincenzo's Coffee House (St. Nicholas Arcades, by Boots) at 1pm to attend the afternoon session.

Campus in the City is a Lancaster University initiative designed to bring the research and activities taking place on campus into the city centre to engage the local community.

With activities ranging from World War I exhibitions to 3D printing demonstrations, workshops on smartphone art and the human body, racing cars, careers and virtual reality we aim to demonstrate what happens on campus on a daily basis and encourage everyone in the local community to get involved.

More information can be found here:

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


Please Note:

This Lunchtime Lecture is postponed due to industrial action called by UCU. We will endeavour to reschedule this lecture at a later date.

Instead, the CLG will visit the Campus in the City Law Clinic session in St. Nicholas Arcades (St. Nics), Lancaster City Centre.

This week’s Law Clinic event at Campus in the City is entitled ‘Street Law: The Importance of Making a Will’.

Meet at Vincenzo's Coffee House (St. Nicholas Arcades, by Boots) at 1pm to attend the afternoon session


14th March 2018 - Ryan Evans, PhD Student, Department: English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University

'The Green Crow: An Introduction to the Life and Drama of Sean O' Casey'

When you think of great Irish writers, who comes to mind? Oscar Wilde? John Millington Synge? William Butler Yeats? Samuel Beckett? What about Sean O'Casey, who saved the Irish national theatre from collapse, who was the inspiration of Samuell Beckett, and whom W.B. Yeats defended so valiantly from the stage? In this lecture, Ryan will discuss the life of Sean O'Casey and his brilliant, and often controversial, drama.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


21st March 2018 - Dr Amin Al-Astewani, Lecturer in Law, Lancaster Law School. Lancaster University.

'The Gay Cake Case: Is English Law Developing a Hierarchy of Rights?'

A body of evidence reveals a growing preference in the English courts for subordinating the right to manifest one’s religious beliefs to the right not to be discriminated against on the basis of sexual orientation even if some form of reasonable accommodation between these rights is possible.

In the 2016 case of Lee vs. Ashers Baking Co. (dubbed the ‘gay cake’ case), the Christian owners of a bakery who had refused to provide a customer with a cake decorated with a slogan in support of same-sex marriage were found to have unlawfully discriminated against him.

The Court of Appeal further held that Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 were not incompatible with Articles 9, 10, and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The judgment highlights the degree to which sexual orientation is not only a protected characteristic, but also a protected ideology, an ideology that now appears to supersede in law the freedom to conduct oneself or one’s business in any way that might signal disagreement with it.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

Previous Lectures...

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11th October 2017 - Dr Brian Hodgson, Formerly of Lancaster University Ruskin Centre/Member of the CLG.

'Material Choices in the Built Environment'

In the philosophy of materials a system is needed to recognized and defined how materials are chosen for buildings and fittings and furniture used in those buildings. Schools of architecture (Metaphorical schools not actual ones), and design, list various criteria. These criteria are often artistic-design orientated using what Ruskin once described as probity of style instead of probity of materials.
Most of the historical definitions of architecture are style or outward appearance based. W R Lethaby in his writings on architecture and furniture makes some very interesting observations; for instance, in Architecture, Mysticism and Myth he talks about the necessities imposed by materials.... and the physical laws in their combination. This is one of the main stays of the Philosophy.
The other is the rather esoteric understanding of the buildings of the ancient civilizations which echoed their builder's understanding of the world and its creation. I do not yet see how these, apparently very different, themes can be unified, but it will one be of the defining tenets of the philosophy. If this is not clear, be assured it still is not clear to me, you will see in the lecture some tentative steps taken to make sense of it all.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


18th October 2017 - Marion McClintock, Honorary Archivist and Honorary Fellow, Lancaster University.

'Caring for the University's Heritage'

Marion McClintock, MBE, BA, has worked for the whole of her professional life in higher education, including more than forty years at Lancaster, where she was Academic Registrar from 1994 to 2006. She is currently Honorary Archivist and Honorary Fellow of the University, as well as pursuing historical and related pursuits in Lancashire and Cumbria.

In this lecture, Marion talks about the University’s historical records; their content, conservation and significance and for the future.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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25th October 2017 - Dr Emma Halliday, Senior Research Fellow, Health Research, Lancaster University.

'Health Inequalities-What are they? What causes them? Who is affected? What can be done to reduce the gap?'

How communities are taking control to address health inequalities.

In this lunchtime lecture, Emma Halliday will talk about the health inequalities that persist in the UK and the types of actions needed to tackle this. She will explore specifically how initiatives aiming to empower communities to have greater control over decisions that affect them, have the potential to improve health and help reduce the gap in health between more and less affluent parts of the country. The lecture will draw upon recently completed research funded by the NIHR School for Public Health Research.

Emma is a Senior Research Fellow working on a programme of research funded by the NIHR School for Public Health Research. Current projects include:

The Communities in Control Study - An evaluation of the health impact of the place based initiative - Big Local - being rolled out in 150 areas in England
Evaluating the health inequalities impact of reducing the cost of Local Authority Leisure Facilities - funded by the NIHR SPHR Public Health Evaluation Practice Scheme.

Between 2010-2013, Emma worked on a research programme evaluating the health impact of one of England's largest area based initiatives - New Deal for Communities.

Prior to joining Lancaster University, Emma gained a doctorate in history in 2003 and worked in mental health research roles within the public and not for profit sectors.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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1st November 2017 - Dr Joanna Taylor, Senior Research Associate, Department of History, Lancaster University.

'The Romantic Lake District’s Soundscape'

This paper will explore the representation of sound in Romantic-era Lake District literature to reveal the ways in which sound was used to understand place in this period. It will suggest that making noises offered an important means of finding a connection between the self and the landscape that might help us re-consider the way that we respond to the world around us.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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8th November 2017 - Visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre Current Exhibition.

'On Home Ground: Ruskin in England and Scotland'

Those of you who have attended in the past will know that we try to take in all of the exhibitions at the Ruskin as they are generally excellent.

The depictions of French cathedrals, Venetian palaces and the Swiss Alps by John Ruskin (1819-1900) are rightly admired, but he also produced drawings and watercolours on home ground in England and Scotland. This display includes some of his very earliest drawings made in Kent when only twelve; examples from early tours to Scotland and the Lake District in 1837 and 1838; others from his student days at Oxford and later occasional travels; and those made in and around Brantwood, his house at Coniston, after he settled there in 1872.

More information about the Ruskin Centre can be found here:

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the campus roundabout) in the run up to 1pm.

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15th November 2017 - Professor Tony Gatrell, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University.

'We’re Quite Outgoing People - Therapeutic Mobilities & Ageing'

Tony is a geographer by training and his research interests lie in the geography of health and ‘medical geography’. In brief, this means looking at the connections between space, place and health. More specifically, Tony Has interests in: the geographical dimensions of health inequalities; spatial epidemiology; and the geography of health care provision. More recently he has become interested in the links between movement and health, including walking and well-being. Some of this work has been summarised in his latest book, on ‘Mobilities and Health’ (Ashgate, 2011). Tony has collaborated with many health professionals in the past, including those working in: palliative care; public health; neurology; cardiology; and paediatrics.

In this lecture Tony will draw on some recent research that considers ‘getting about’ in later life. He will talk less about the health benefits, which are generally well-known, and more about environmental context, social connections, enablement and disruption.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


22nd November 2017- Dr Susie Balderston, Research Fellow, Lancaster University.

'Changing the Laws for Assisted Dying?: Ethics, Evidence and Mental Health'

Susie is a Research Fellow in social policy and criminology (violence against women). She specialises in tackling social inequalities, ethics and human rights, particularly with regard to disability, violence against women and safeguarding (statutory and voluntary sectors).

Susie gained her Ph.D. from Lancaster University Law School; it was the first Doctorate concerned with interventions, with victims and Survivors of disablist hate crime and rape. Supervisors were Professor Paul Iganski and Professor Sue Wise and the thesis was examined by Barbara Perry (Ontario) and Sarah Beresford (Lancaster University).

Susie is Policy Director of a social enterprise of disabled people in Tyne and Wear (which she co-founded in 2003) and has conducted user-led policy development, training and evaluation in health and social care with the Department of Health, 32 local authorities, NHS Trusts and Police Forces in the last ten years.

Susie has served as an advisor to the Equality and Human Rights Commission Statutory Inquiry into Disability Harassment, EU Daphne four country research project with disabled women after violence and NIHR Barriers and Discrimination in Healthcare research. She was a lecturer in Social Policy at University of Salford for two and a half years until February 2017. She is also currently a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham.

In this lecture, Susie will look at the controversial, and topical area of the laws around assisted dying.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


29th November 2017 - Moujan Mirdamadi, PhD Student, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.

'How culture shapes depression: an Iranian case study'

Psychiatric diagnoses assume the universality of symptoms and manifestations of depression. Yet culture has an undeniable effect on articulations and manifestations of depression, as well as the attitudes and responses patients take towards the illness. This talk explores some of the ways experiences of depression in Iran are shaped by cultural values and belief systems.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


6th December 2017- Dan Degerman, PhD Student, Department of Politics, Philosophy & Religion, Lancaster University.

'Brexit Anxiety: A case study in the medicalization of dissent'

Immediately after the EU referendum, people were reportedly flooding psychiatric clinics to receive care for their Brexit-related emotional suffering. Mental health experts dubbed this suffering ‘Brexit anxiety’, and warned that the anger, fear, and sadness that many people felt – especially those who had voted Remain – were incipient symptoms of mental disorder. This talk will examine the use of Brexit anxiety and other ideas of mental disorder in the aftermath of the referendum, and consider how this affected some citizens’ capacity to participate in the political debate.

Dan Degerman is a PhD student in political philosophy and Society & Ethics Wellcome scholar at Lancaster University. His doctoral research investigates the political relevance of mental suffering. In 2014, he earned an MA in political and legal theory from the University of York, graduating at the top of his class and earning the award for best political philosophy dissertation. Between 2011 and 2012, he was a Researcher-in-Residence at the Center for Neurotechnology Studies at the Potomac Institute for in Arlington, Virginia, exploring the ethical, legal and social implications of human enhancement.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


13th December 2017 - Barbara Coulton, CLG Group Member, Lancaster University.

'The Vikings?'

Barbara studied at the Institute of Archiology, London University...She did a lot of digging! Later she shifted her focus from the Mediterranean to the Near East. She also has an interest in the Anglo-Saxon and Norse people. Though she hasn't studied in the native Scandinavian languages, she has carried out extensive studies in English and has visited a number of important sites as she has gone along.

In this talk Barbara aims to pass on what is known as well as what is not known.

We will finish the afternoon with a Jacob's Join and a good old fashioned chat as we catch up on news and gossip and look forward to our break over the Christmas period.

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26th April 2017 - Lyn Summers, Former Principal Inspector at the Health and Safety Executive's, Nuclear Installations Inspectorate.

'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).

His talk will review the basics of nuclear power technology, what is meant by 'safety' and how the criteria for safety have been developed in the UK and world-wide. He will then discuss how safety is analyzed to establish that the criteria for safe operation are met. Finally, he will talk on various aspects of designing and operating nuclear reactors to ensure they are safe to operate.

He anticipates a vigorous discussion after the talk!

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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3rd May 2017 - Gary Rycroft, Solicitor with Joseph A. Jones & Co. Solicitors.

'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 the with us how we might disinherit our children.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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10th May 2017 - Dying Matters Awareness Week Event...

Hosted by the Continuing Learning Group, the Centre For Ageing Research & Lancaster University.

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 Event

Wednesday 10th May 2017

St Paul's Parish Hall,




10.30am until 3pm

Provisional Programme:

10.30am Welcome and Introduction

10.45am Film-Conversations For Life

11am Advance Planning using free tools with Janet Ross - formerly Age UK

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)

1pm 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 Solicitors.
Can you have a greener funeral? - Gail Capstick, Transition City Lancaster.

2.30pm Death Cafe - Tea and free Cake and chat.

3pm 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 the Continuing Learning Group, drop us a line to

Tea and coffee available: Bread n'soup lunches available to order £4-50

Everyone is Welcome


17th May 2017 - Dr. Jack Brettle, Honorary Fellow at Aberystwyth University.

'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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


24th May 2017 - Professor Alisdair Gillespie, Lancaster Law School, Lancaster University.


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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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31st May 2017 - Dr Samuele Carcagno, Senior Research Associate, Department of Psychology, Lancaster University.

'Wood Choice for Acoustic Guitars & Hearing and Ageing'

Samuele obtained a Master’s degree in psychology at the University of Milan-Bicocca in 2006, and a PhD in psychology at Lancaster University in 2010. In the last 10 years he has conducted research on various aspects of hearing in humans, including learning auditory tasks, and the coding of basic sound attributes such as frequency and intensity in the brain. His research often combines behavioural and electrophysiological measures to understand the relation between the neural processing of sound and its perception.

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.

If you would like to sign-up for the study, or would like to know more you can visit our website:

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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7th June 2017 - Dr Amin-Al-Astewani, Lecturer in Law, Lancaster Law School. Lancaster University.

'English Human Rights Law and the Use of Religious Symbols'

This talk will reflect 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.

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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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14th June 2017 - Professor Stephen Wildman, Director, Ruskin Library, Lancaster University.

'John Ruskin & Stephen Wildman - Two Careers'

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 and 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 he 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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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. 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.

'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. Going beyond this, Varoufakis lays out the options available to us for reintroducing a modicum of reason into a highly irrational global economic order.'

(taken from

21st June 2017 - Lecture Cancelled

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

28th June 2017 - Rescheduled lecture from 21st June 2017 with Jim Ring.

See above for details.

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18th January 2017 - Dr Brian Hodgson, Formerly of Lancaster University Ruskin Centre.

'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!

(Photo Copyright: Fork to Fork Lancaster)

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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25th January 2017 - Professor Kamilla Elliott, Prof of Literature and Media ,English and Creative Writing Dept. Lancaster University.

'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).

'My research interests lie in literature's relationship with other media, especially the visual arts and film. I am currently working on sequels to my two monographs: Rethinking the Adaptation/Theorization Debate follows on from Rethinking the Novel/Film Debate (Cambridge, 2003); Victorian Literature and the Rise of Picture Identification, 1836-1918 continues the research published in Portraiture and British Gothic Fiction: The Rise of Picture Identification, 1764-1835(Johns Hopkins, 2012).'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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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.

'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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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8th February 2017 - Debbie Parkinson (Innovation Agency) & Andrew Michaelson (Care Innovation)

'Get Active: Improving Physical Fitness and Quality of Life through Group Activity'

Debbie Parkinson from Innovation Agency and Andrew Michaelson of Care Innovation will present their Lunchtime Lecture on what maintaining activity can do for us.

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."

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, 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.​"

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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15th 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.

'Forensic Radiology #2'

Gill returns to present the second of her two lectures on Forensic Radiology.
See above for a full outline of the contents of this particular lecture.

Please Note: These lectures are designed to stand alone so don't worry if you were unable to attend the previous one.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


22nd February 2017 - Professor Anne Wichman, University of Central Lancashire, Language, Literature and International Studies.

'It’s Not What You Say But The Way That You Say It'

Prosody : 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. I shall discuss how we use prosody in our everyday interaction, and also some of the challenges it poses for speech technology.

Professor Anne Wichmann visits us from UCLAN to present her lecture on language, intonation and its consequences.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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1st March 2017 - Dr Siobhan Weare. Lecturer with Lancaster Law School, Lancaster University.

‘Legally Recognising the Experiences of Male Victims of Female ‘Rapists’'

The existing 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 either vaginally, anally, or orally. This therefore excludes the female perpetrator-male victim paradigm, and more specifically those cases where male victims are “forced to penetrate” female perpetrators. This paper argues that consideration needs to be given to legally recognising and thus labelling forced to penetrate cases as rape. Applying a methodology that draws upon the lived experiences of male victims, it is argued that there are significant similarities between compelled penetration cases and those cases legally recognised as rape, not only because they both involve non-consensual penile penetration, but because there are clear similarities in the aggressive strategies used by perpetrators, and the subsequent harms experienced by victims.

In addition to lecturing, Siobhan is Deputy Director of Admissions and Director of Communications for the Law School

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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8th March 2017 - Dr Lara Warmelink , Department of Psychology, Lancaster University.

'Deception and Security'

Lara holds a BSc in psychology and an MPhil in cognitive neuroscience (Leiden University, the Netherlands, 2007, 2009, both with distinctions). Her PhD in psychology is from the University of Portsmouth (2012) and was on Lying about Intentions.

"My research focuses on detecting lies about intentions. One part of this is that I study intentions: how they are made, remembered and executed. I’m also trying to adapt traditional lie detection methods to detect lies about intentions: I study 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 research you can read my article here: (The psychologist, oct. 2013)"

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


15th March 2017 - Dr Bela Chattergee, Lancaster University Law School.

'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.

Dr Chatterjee's work interrogates interdisciplinary aspects of cyberlaw. She has interests in cybercrime, international law/international humanitarian law, conflict/war, security, gender/sexuality. She has published in prestigious national/international peer-reviewed journals including Child and Family Law Quarterly, the International Journal of Law and Information Technology and Sexualities.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


22nd March 2017 - Dr Emmanuel Tsekleves, Senior Lecturer in Design Interactions, Lancaster University.

'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.

Previous research in this field also includes the design & development of playful therapy interventions in neurophysiological (such as stroke) and neurodegenerative health conditions (such as Parkinson's). He is currently working with people in the early stages of Dementia, with families of children with autism and in the area of public health on the design of playful technology and interactions that promote healthy behaviours. His current research also looks into how participatory design fictions can be used a s a tool to provoke and generate debate around policy initiatives and emergent technology amongst diverse groups in the areas of ageing and dementia.

Lastly, Emmanuel is a member of the Centre for Ageing Research and the Programme leader for the new BA Design, co-editor of the Taylor Francis Design for Healthcare book to be published in 2017 and blogs regularly for The Guardian and The Conversation on the design and use of technology in Health."


12th October 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.

'Introduction to Magistracy'

In this first lecture of the 2016/2017 academic year, James builds on his previous lecture from last term. James will focus on the concept of magistracy and explain to us how contemporary magistracy operates.

This is the first of a series of lectures/workshops on the subject of magistracy which we are running this term. With this series, we aim to give attendees a good, rounded understanding of this fascinating field.


19th October 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.

'The Mock Trial'

This session, our second of the series on the subject of magistracy, 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 courtroom 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.

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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?'

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 and Wales, post financial crisis.

The lecture is based on research carried out for an ESRC-funded Secondary Data Analysis Initiative by Professor Sylvia Walby, Professor Brian Francis and Dr Jude Towers. The two journal articles from this research project are open access and available here:

Walby, S.; Towers, J. and Francis, B. (2014) ‘Mainstreaming domestic and gender-based violence into sociology and the criminology of violence’ The Sociological Review 62(S2): 187-241:

Walby, S.; Towers, J. and Francis, B. (2016) ‘Is violent crime increasing or decreasing? A new methodology to measure repeat attacks making visible the significance of gender and domestic relations’ British Journal of Criminology:

Further information on this and related projects is available via the Violence and Society UNESCO Centre website:


2nd November 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.


In this last session on magistracy, James will explore the area of sentencing.


9th November 2016 - Janet Ross-Mills, Lancaster University CLG Steering Group and Age UK.

'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, what has been learned and how this worthwhile approach to our end of life care can be beneficial.


16th November 2016 - Dr Garuth Chalfont, Department of Health Research, Lancaster University.

'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.

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23rd November 2016 - Dr Maria Christou, Lancaster University.

'Depictions of Genetically Modified Foods in Contemporary Fiction'

"I completed my PhD on the subject of food in twentieth-century literature and philosophy last academic year. Since then I've been working on another food-based project. The talk I propose to give, which I believe to be of public interest (but you'll be the judges of that!), is 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."

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30th November 2016 - Dr Thomas Mills, Lecturer in Diplomacy and Foreign Policy, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.

'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 much fabled 'special relationship' with the United States in the context of Brexit and the US Presidential election.

"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."


7th December 2016 - Dr John Gilchrist, Retired, University of Cambridge, Centre de Recherches sur les Très Basses Températures, France.

'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

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.

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14th December 2016 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Research Centre Exhibition.

'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.

Previous Lunchtime Lectures...

Academic Year 2015/2016

Summer Term

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20th April 2016 - Dr Penny Foulds, Research Fellow, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Lancaster University.

'Defying Dementia: Compound to Clinic'

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 our 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.

For more information call 01524 592376 or email

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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27th April 2016 - Dr Mary Turner, Research Fellow, International Observatory of End of Life Care, Lancaster University.

'Caring for End of Lifers: Palliative Care in a Prison Environment'

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, including prisons. Mary has expertise in qualitative and mixed methods. She is currently the lead researcher on a project about end of life care for stroke patients, which is taking place in North Wales and North West England, and is also Principal Investigator on a new action research study on end of life care for prisoners.

'My 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.'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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4th May 2016 - Professor Stephen Wildman, Director, Ruskin Library, Lancaster University.

'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 talk, 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.

Further reading:

John Ruskin, Unto This Last and other writings Ed. Clive Wilmer (Penguin, 1985; revised 1997)

Dinah Birch (ed.), John Ruskin: Selected Writings (Oxford University Press, 2004) [Oxford World’s Classics]

John Batchelor, John Ruskin: No Wealth but Life (Chatto & Windus, 2000); paperback edition (Pimlico, 2001)

Kevin Jackson, The Worlds of John Ruskin (Pallas Athene and the Ruskin Foundation, 2009)

Andrew Ballantyne, John Ruskin [Critical Lives] (Reaktion Books, 2015)

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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11th May 2016 - Gail Capstick, Director of LESS

'DIY 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.
She is a housing professional and a member of the Chartered Institute of Housing. The work in housing has largely been for voluntary sector providers although she has also worked for local authorities and a housing association. This included community engagement and service user consultations in housing and with clients of social care. Some of this has been with groups considered hard to reach. She has done some work in connection with older people and their support needs in housing.

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 A grant of £10,000 was given by the then primary care trust. 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 obtained another grant form charitable funding and 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.

Followed by...

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Speakers - Janet Ross-Mills (CLG / Age UK) & Esther Nimmo (Compassion in Dying)

'How to Make an Advance Decision (Living Will) For Free'

Advance Decisions to refuse treatment are legally binding in England and Wales due to the Mental Capacity Act 2007. This workshop event will show how people can let their doctors and loved ones know their wishes about preferred treatment and care. Come along and find out how to make a legally binding, valid and applicable document at no cost.

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18th May 2016 - Professor Kamilla Elliot, Prof of Literature and Media ,English and Creative Writing Dept. Lancaster University.

'Victorian Literature and Film'

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).

'My research interests lie in literature's relationship with other media, especially the visual arts and film. I am currently working on sequels to my two monographs: Rethinking the Adaptation/Theorization Debate follows on from Rethinking the Novel/Film Debate (Cambridge, 2003); Victorian Literature and the Rise of Picture Identification, 1836-1918 continues the research published in Portraiture and British Gothic Fiction: The Rise of Picture Identification, 1764-1835(Johns Hopkins, 2012).'

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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25th May 2016 - Abigail Edmunds, PhD student English and Creative Writing Dept. Lancaster University.

'Revisiting Charles Kingsley's The Water Babies'

"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."

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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1st June 2016 - Abigail Oyston, PhD Student, Dept of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University.

'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. I use 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. I juxtapose medical journal articles, newspaper reports, and fiction to gain a broader understanding of the social and cultural values associated with murdered babies.

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. "

Abigail is a part-time PhD student in the English and Creative Writing department at Lancaster University. Her thesis examines representations of deaths associated with childbirth in a range of Victorian discourses, including medical articles, diaries, fiction and poetry. Abigail also works in Public Engagement in the department of Health Research at Lancaster, and is an Academic Writing Mentor for the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


8th June 2016 - Lucia Marquart, Environment and Community Projects, Lancashire County Council.

'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. 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 as a whole.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


15th June 2016 - James Dickinson, Deputy Chair of the Lancaster Bench.

'History of the Magistracy'

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

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

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

The second session will be 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 constitutes 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. They will be comprehensive, fun and highly educational.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


22nd June 2016 - Prof Christine Milligan, Director of the Centre for Ageing Research (C4AR), Lancaster University.

Care, coping and identity: older men’s experiences of spousal care-giving.

In this lecture, Director of the Centre for Ageing Research (our home in Lancaster University), and good friend to the CLG, Professor Christine Milligan 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 this, our final lecture of this term and academic year.

We will follow Christine's lecture with a Jacob's Join to close the term.

Christine's lecture also marks 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 the university, to a self-supporting programme of lectures, discussions and research projects run by the group members themselves. We have encountered many changes over the past ten years and have worked hard to keep the programme on track through a harsh recession and many 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 which we are extremely proud of. We are eternally grateful to those that have joined us on this journey, in whatever capacity (departmental staff, volunteers, lecturers, researchers, students, retired people, visitors to Lancaster, organisation members and friends) and we 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.

Our lent term this year focused on the themes of...

Politics, Travel/Transport, China.

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13th January 2016 - Dr. Garrath Williams, Senior Lecturer, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.

'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 ). 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 back and look forward to his lecture, the opening lecture of 2016.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


20th January 2016, Dr Giovanni Bettini, Lecturer, Environment Centre, Lancaster University.

'Unsettling Futures: climate change, migration, and the immobility of climate politics'

Giovanni Bettini is Lecturer at the Lancaster Environmental Centre (Lancaster University) and holds a PhD from Lund University (Sweden).
The focus of his 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 differently. Visualizing the impacts of such severe climate change – and of our responses to it – requires a radical imaginative effort. If we take the possibility of 3 or 4°C warmer planet seriously, we can expect changes in the very ways in which humans understand, plan and experience their (im)mobility. And in effect, the question of how climate change will influence human migration has alimented a florid debate in the last decade. Academics have written reams about climate-induced migration, and policy negotiations have gathered pace. To be sure, various steps forwards have been taken. The securitizing drives once ‘justified’ by the fear of mounting waves of climate refugees have given way to the milder imaginaries of resilience, adaptation and development. While previously signified solely in terms of forced migration, the nexus climate change-migration is looked upon from a more comprehensive vista. Displacement, reduced mobility (with the issue of ‘trapped populations’), voluntary migration (preached as a legitimate adaptation strategy), planned relocation and resettlement are co-protagonists of today’s policy debates.

The environmental determinism previously dominant is thereby gone, and more nuanced understandings of (climate) migration have prevailed. Nonetheless, there is a striking dissonance between the paucity of those debates and the re-imagination necessary for formulating a politicized understanding of so called climate migration. While we should feel no nostalgia for the alarmist narratives of the past, the current mundane discourses anaesthetise the radical challenges posed by the climate-migration nexus. The prospect of unprecedented changes is dealt with through an attempt to reproduce “business as usual”. The emerging discourses contemplate displacement, trapped populations, migration as adaptation and planned relocation in ways that conciliate the agendas of dominant international agencies. The current approaches to climate migration are a re-proposition of the measures predominant in the fields of development, aid, migration, risk management and climate adaptation, which have proved functional to the re-production of neoliberal relations. In other words, the emerging discourses foreclose the political by sterilizing the radical questions that might emerge. To the radical transformations associated to a 3 or 4 °C warmer planet, the “new” discourses on climate migration respond with ‘more of the same’, making sure that nothing can change even in the front of epochal changes.

For more info, find Giovanni on and Lancaster University’s page.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

List of associated reading material...

Black R, Bennett SRG, Thomas SM, et al. (2011) Climate Change: Migration as adaptation. Nature 478: 447-449.

López-Carr D and Marter-Kenyon J. (2015) Human Adaptation: Manage climate-induced resettlement. Nature 517: 265-267.

Bettini G. (2014) Climate migration as an adaption strategy: de-securitizing climate-induced migration or making the unruly governable? Critical Studies on Security 2: 180-195.

Bettini G. (2013) Climates barbarians at the gate? A critique of apocalyptic narratives on climate refugees Geoforum 45: 63-72.

Gemenne F. (2011) Why the numbers don’t add up: A review of estimates and predictions of people displaced by environmental changes. Global Environmental Change 21, Supplement 1: S41-S49.

Chapter 12 in IPCC. (2014) Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability. Part A: Global and Sectoral Aspects. Contribution of
Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Cambridge (UK) and New York (NY, USA): Cambridge University Press.

Methmann C and Oels A. (2015) From ‘fearing’ to ‘empowering’ climate refugees: Governing climate-induced migration in the name of resilience. Security Dialogue 46: 51-68.

Biermann F and Boas I. (2010) Preparing for a Warmer World: Towards a Global Governance System to Protect Climate Refugees. Global environmental politics 10: 60-88.


27th January 2016 - Jenny Brine and Lynne Pickles, Lancaster University Library

'A New Library For You'

As you may know, Lancaster University has recently undergone extensive refurbishment of its on-campus library facilities. In this talk, Academic Liaison Librarian for Content, Jenny Brine and Library Assistant with Operations and Services, Lynne Pickles will talk about all the changes that have taken place and 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


3rd February 2016 - David Waines, Emeritus Professor, Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University.

'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, a few of whom I have mentioned in the bibliography. 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."

Born and raised in central Canada, David's travels began as a university student when he and his younger sister accompanied their parents during a year's sojourn in the Sudan, just after it had achieved independence. That experience determined David's life's trajectory.

After completing his degree in Canada, he travelled by boat from Montreal (laden with a trunk full of books) to Southampton to study Arabic and Middle East history at the School of Oriental and African Studies at London University. An informal year's "study abroad" took him back to the Middle East, living and travelling in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan and Iraq.

David's post-graduate studies were completed in Montreal at the Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University, during which time he wrote his first book on the Arab-Israeli conflict. A teaching post came up at the American University in Cairo where he spent three years before obtaining a lectureship here in Lancaster, where he has been based ever since. There have, however, been teaching and research breaks in other universities in Lebanon, Canada, Spain and Holland, always returning to the north of England, where David is now retired as Emeritus Professor of Islamic Studies.

List of associated reading material...

Tim Mackintosh Smith, The Travels of Ibn Battuta, (Oxford: Picador) 2002.

Ross Dunn, The Adventures of Ibn Battuta: A Muslim Traveller of the 14th Century, (London: Croom Helm) 1986.

L.P. Harvey, Ibn Battuta (London: I.B. Tauris), 2007

Houari Touati, Islam and Travel in the Middle Ages, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press) 2010

David Waines, The Odyssey of Ibn Battuta, (London: I.B. Tauris) 2010

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


10th February 2016 – Prof. Alan Beattie, Formerly of Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University.

'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

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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17th February 2016 - Richard Trevitt, Lancaster Canal Trust

'History of the Lancaster Canal'

Richard Trevitt is a member of the Lancaster Canal Trust. He 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.

More details to follow

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


24th February 2016 - Costain Engineering

'The Construction and Challenges of the M6-Heysham Link Road'

In this talk, Antony Crowley will take us through the link road construction process and discuss the challenges Costain have encountered.

Antony has worked with Costain as a community relations officer for six and a half years now. Prior to taking this post, Antony worked as a police officer in Greater Manchester for thirty one years.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


2nd March 2016 - Prof Sarah Zhang, Chinese Director of Confucius Institute / Professor of South China University of Technology.

‘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 will dedicate herself to the Institute’s programmes of Mandarin teaching and culture exchange.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


9th March 2016 - Feranita Feranita, PhD Student, Lancaster University Management School.

'Challenges of Forming International R&D Alliances'

This presentation focuses 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 to set up and develop R&D alliance with Chinese organisations. Using the programme as a research setting and the R&D 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 R&D alliance with Chinese organisations. In general, the challenges identified by existing research on forming R&D alliances in China include lack of understanding the legal system, IP protection issue, language, and cultural differences.

Born in Indonesia, educated in Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, Canada, and Spain, Feranita is currently pursuing her PhD degree at Lancaster University. Prior to coming to Lancaster, she has worked in various sectors in Indonesia and Singapore, obtained her MBA from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and Master of Research from ESADE Business School, Barcelona, Spain. Her research topic is on collaborative innovation, R&D alliances, and family business.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

16th March 2016 - Dr Vittorio Tantucci, Lecturer of Dept. of Linguistics and English Language

'Chinese Philosophy of Time'

Many (yet not all) aspects of Vittorio's research are centered on Mandarin Chinese and other Sinitic languages addressed from a typological or intercultural-pragmatic point of view. As a theoretical linguist, he is interested in the relationship between cognition, pragmatics and historical phenomena of language change, such as grammaticalization, (inter-)subjectification, chunking, constructionalization and semasiology. In addition, his research is also focused on the intersection of online phenomena of speech production and cognitive mechanisms such as cognitive control and Theory of Mind.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum



Our Michaelmas term this year will focused on the themes of...

Environment, Literature and Social Inclusion.

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7th October 2015 – Dr Fiona Frank, Founder of Lancaster University Senior Learners Programme, Green Elephant Cooperative.

‘The Reluctant Environmentalist’

Fiona will talk about how joining Lancaster Cohousing, with its core group of committed eco-warriors, has led her (and others) to take a few steps that could make a difference, and how she has begun to find out more about how everything we do in the world has an effect on the world. She will also talk a little about care of the environment in the Jewish tradition.

Fiona, MA PhD was the instigator and first coordinator of the Senior Learners Programme, the forerunner of the CLG, when it was based in the Dept of Continuing Education at Lancaster University. Set up at the suggestion of Prof Keith Percy, it ran for 3 years till the department was closed down - at which point the programme was taken over by its members!

When the dept closed and Fiona and the rest of the staff were made redundant, she went to Scotland and finished her PhD which is about Scottish Jewish identity; she has been working for the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities for the last 4 years on Scottish Government funded research and development projects (latterly commuting by bike and train), and since August 2012 has lived in Lancaster Cohousing, an Eco-community in Halton 3 miles outside Lancaster on the river Lune.

She now helps to run Halton Mill, an Eco-Workspace and Event space owned by the Cohousing project, and continues to do some work in Scotland and also in London for the Ben Uri London Jewish Museum of Art. She is secretary of Lancaster and Lakes Jewish Community and plays English, Irish and Klezmer music on melodeon and concertina.

We are extremely pleased to welcome Fiona back to start our tenth year's events.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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14th October 2015 – Stephen Andrew, Construction Project Manager, Dong Energy.

‘Walney Extension Wind Turbine Project’

DONG Energy guest speaker Stephen Andrews will be giving a short presentation on the Walney Extension project and 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.

Stephen Andrews is the Construction Project Manager for the Walney Extension offshore wind farm, which once built, will be the largest offshore wind farm in the world. He has extensive experience in both the public and private sectors within a range of different industries and on a number of major projects both in the U.K. and at a European level, including nuclear, offshore, submarine, shipbuilding, chemical and recently wind energy and renewables. He has a Master’s degree in Systems Engineering from University College, London and a degree in Management. He is a Chartered Fellow and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, a registered Chartered Engineer with the Engineering Council and a member of the Institute of Engineering and Technology

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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21st October 2015 – Susannah Bleakley, Executive Director, Morecambe Bay Partnership.

‘Morecambe Bay Partnership - a small charity that makes BIG things happen for the most special of places - Morecambe Bay'

"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 exhbition 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, commited 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 beachcleans 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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8th October 2015 - Amy, Deborah and Gordon of the National Grid.

'The North-West Coast Connections Project'

This presentation by National Grid personnel will enhance our 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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4th November 2015 – Dawn Stobbart, PhD Student, Department of English & Creative Writing. Lancaster University.

‘Reading, Watching Playing: Videogames and Narrative’

Dawn will touch on aspects of her topic such as adaptation as well as narrative structure.

Dawn Stobbart is in the final stages of PhD study at Lancaster University’s English Department. 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 PhD 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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11th November 2015 – Ali Hanbury & Cron Cronshaw, PhD Students, Department of Sociology, Lancaster University.

'An Introduction to Trans- Identified Young People’s Experiences'

Cron: I’m a second year PhD student, in the department of Sociology, researching the decision-making processes of parents with gender-variant children. I’m 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: I am a professional youth and community worker with particular interest in anti-discriminatory practice, feminist youth work and sexual health from a pleasure perspective. I manage the LGBT centre in Manchester which is the first publicly funded centre of its kind in Europe. My PhD is funded through the European Research Council and focuses on young women's experiences of the HPV vaccination.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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18th November 2015 – Prof. Simon Bainbridge, Department of English & Creative Writing,

Lancaster University.

‘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.

Simon Bainbridge is Professor of Romantic Studies in the Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University. He has written extensively o n Romantic poetry and warfare, including the books Napoleon and English Romanticism (Cambridge University Press, 1995) and British Poetry and the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (Oxford University Press, 2003). Together with Jeff Cowton, he co-curated the Wordsworth Trust exhibition ‘Wordsworth, War and Waterloo’ and co-edited the accompanying publication.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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25th November 2015 – Annie Nissen, Lancaster University Researcher

'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. My 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, I want 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 Nissen 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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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2nd December 2015 – Dr Celia Roberts, Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociology, Lancaster University.

‘Puberty in Crisis? A sociological account of contemporary changes to childhood and the timing of sexual development’.

Celia Roberts 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).

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum


9th December 2015 – Prof. Alan Beattie, Formerly of Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University.

'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’

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

Previous Lectures...

Academic Year 2014/15

Please note: Many of these lectures can be found in audio format on the (E) Recordings of Lectures page.


22nd April 2015 - Dr Shuruq Naguib, Politics, Philosophy & Religion Department at Lancaster University.

'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. Shuruq has written on ritual purity, metaphor in post-classical Qur'an interpretation and Arabic rhetoric, feminist hermeneutics of the Qur'an, and contemporary female exegetes and jurists in Islam. In recent years, Shuruq has developed an interest in Islam in Britain, co-authoring a study of change in conceptions of God in modern Britain and leading a research project entitled Muslim Women Reading Religious Texts in Britain and Egypt (2010-2011). The project investigated how core Islamic texts are read by ‘ordinary' Muslim women in light of their contexts. Shuruq has also been involved in supporting Islamic studies in the UK through her work with HEFCE's Islamic Studies Network until 2012, and currently through her capacity as interim Co-chair of the British Association of Islamic Studies (BRAIS).

In this lecture Shuruq looks at the, often contentious, role of women in the religion of Islam. We feel Sharuq’s lecture will sit comfortably with the previous lectures we've had this academic year on other various aspects of Islam.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: Opinion Polls: What do they actually tell us? Do they influence voting intentions?

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29th April 2015 – Digital Lecture – 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.

**Lisa Harouni: A primer on 3D printing** (15m)
**Klaus Stadlmann: The world’s smallest 3D printer** (9m)
**Scott Summit: Beautiful artificial limbs** (11m)
**Anthony Atala: Printing a human kidney** (17m)
**Marc Goodman: A vision of crimes in the future** (19m)
**David F. Flanders: Why I have a 3D printer** (13m)

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum: The Funding of Political Parties: What is the ideal model?

6th May 2015 - We host our first ever conference...

Lancaster UniversityContinuing Learning GroupHost'Medicine, Memory and Melancholy'atThe Sanctuary, Lancaster Library, Market Square, LancasteronWednesday 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.

Refreshments available

Admission is free, Places are limited and likely to be in demand, so early registration is recommended.

Closing Date for registration: WAS 15/16th April 2015. We are pleased to say that the response to this event has been good. However, the event is now fully booked and we are not able to accept any more applications to attend. Thank You.

for more information,
please contact the event organisers

Telephone: 01524 844295

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This event is supported by Lancaster University Alumni, Developments and Events Division, and Centre for Ageing Research.

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13th May 2015 - Professor Gill Baynes, former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria, currently Chair of Lancaster & Morecambe U3A.

'Medical Research'

Professor Gill Baynes, former Professor of Medical Imaging Education at the University of Cumbria, 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! Gill believes that this topic will promote a lively debate in the research forum.

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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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20th May 2015 - Janet Ross-Mills (CLG / Age UK) & Esther Nimmo (Compassion in Dying)

'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 Ross-Mills (CLG/Age UK) and Esther Nimmo (Compassion in Dying) discuss end of life choices and rights and how you can ensure your wishes are respected.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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27th May 2015 - Dr Patrick Bishop, Senior Lecturer and Head of Politics, Philosophy & Religion Department at Lancaster University.

'Public Services'

Patrick completed his PhD in Politics at the University of Adelaide in 1995. He was previously Head of the School of Politics and Public Policy, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia and retains research affiliations with the Governance and Public Policy Research Centre and the Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice and Governance. Patrick has also held teaching and research posts at the University of Adelaide and Charles Sturt University and visiting fellowships at George Washington University, Virginia Tech and the University of Melbourne. He has been a Chief Investigator on four Australian Research Council (ARC) funded projects on community consultation and democratic practice; ethical governance in the public sector; E-democracy and, most recently, on regional governance. He is guest editor for a special edition of the International Journal of E Government Research (US); was the co editor of the Australian Journal of Public Administration (published by Blackwells) from 2002-2006; has been a peer reviewer for ARC and ESRC research grant applications and for numerous national and international journals and publishers and an external PhD examiner for the University of Queensland and the University of New England. Patrick has also been a regular consultant to a number of agencies of the Queensland State Government, Brisbane City Council, and the Institute of Public Administration Australia.

Patrick is a member of the ECPR standing group on Internet & Politics ( and is also associated with the Centre for Governance and Public Policy at Griffith University, Australia (

Please note Patrick Bishop's lecture will be held in FURNESS LT3 instead of Fylde, for this week only. It will start at the usual time of 1pm.

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3rd June 2015 - Dr Mary Searle-Chattergee, Centre for Applied South Asian Studies

'Why become a Fundamentalist? : A case study of weavers in Varansi'

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.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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10th June 2015 - Digital Lecture - Members of Staff and students from the Department of English and Creative Writing.

Recorded event filmed in Lancaster Castle.

Beyond the Lancashire Witches: Writing and Freedom. Readings and reflections on prisoners in Lancaster Castle.

The testimonies of the women accused of witchcraft in Lancaster in 1612 as recorded by Thomas Potts, show that, for some at least, the narrative of sorcery offered a fantasy of freedom

Starting with a dramatisation of the women’s testimonies filmed in the Witches Tower where they were imprisoned, this talk will explore the ways in which trials and imprisonment at Lancaster Castle produce expressions of freedom, often, paradoxically, opening the doors to new modes of thinking and feeling. Illustrated with live readings by current and former members of the Department of English & Creative Writing, and dramatizations from the key prison sites across the Castle, the talk will compare texts from the seventeenth century, through to contemporary writings within and inspired by the prison and Lancaster Castle.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

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Ruskin Gallery Visit
The Roadless Trip Show

17th June 2015 - Two events...

1pm - Visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre Current Exhibition.

'Towers and Turrets'

Those of you who have attended in the past will know that we try to take in all of the exhibitions at the Ruskin as they are generally excellent. As with most previous visits, we hope to be guided through the exhibition by the director of the Ruskin, Professor Stephen Wildman.

More details of this exhibition will be added here when we receive it.

More information about the Ruskin Centre can be found here:

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the campus roundabout) in the run up to 1pm.

3.30pm -Sarah Woods presents 'The Roadless Trip'

“The future is not some place we are going to, but somewhere we are creating"

John Schaar, Futurist.

An urgent and irresistible invitation to imagine and create a positive future, The Roadless Trip is a very human and often hilarious journey through time. Mixing performance, film, audience interaction and the frenzy of the popular game show, this moving and very funny multi-media production was received with a standing ovation on its very first performance at the Emergence Summit at the Centre for Alternative Technology in 2012.

Updated with current affairs every time it is performed, The Roadless Trip was also presented as part of Artsadmin’s Two Degrees Festival at Toynbee Studios, London

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24th June 2015 - Digital Lecture - Al Gore

'The Inconvenient Truth: A Global Warning'

In this final session of this academic year, we view Al Gore's controversial documentary.

"Director Davis Guggenheim eloquently weaves the science of global warming with Mr. Gore's personal history and lifelong commitment to reversing the effects of global climate change. A longtime advocate for the environment, Gore presents a wide array of facts and information in a thoughtful and compelling way. "Al Gore strips his presentations of politics, laying out the facts for the audience to draw their own conclusions in a charming, funny and engaging style, and by the end has everyone on the edge of their seats, gripped by his haunting message," said Guggenheim. An Inconvenient Truth is not a story of despair but rather a rallying cry to protect the one earth we all share. "It is now clear that we face a deepening global climate crisis that requires us to act boldly, quickly, and wisely," said Gore."
(Written by Plantation Productions)

The film has received many criticisms both positive and negative. Since the documentary came out however, there has been a significant increase of awareness in global warming that did not exist before the movie came out. Al Gore has helped create a social awareness in millions if not billions of people.

Followed by the Research & Discussion Forum

14th January 2015 - Dr Sam Riches, Department of History, Lancaster University.

‘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 is the Academic Co-ordinator of the Regional Heritage Centre, having worked as the Co-ordinator of its predecessor organisation, CNWRS, since 2009. She has responsibility for arranging study days and other public events, managing the Centre's oral history archive and overseeing heritage consultancy and other activities. For more information about the Centre see
Sam is also an active researcher, with a number of publications to her name on the cult of St George and the interplay between gender identity and and saintliness in the late medieval period.

Sam has an interest in distance learning, and has developed and taught online and blended courses in Art History and History for Oxford University and Lancaster University.

Sam is a cultural historian of the late medieval period, with a special interest in the cults of pseudo-historical saints. She has published extensively on the cult of St George, and has also worked on the cult of St Ursula. Sam is primarily interested in the presentation of gender identity and the role of encounters with the monstrous, both in written narrative and visual motifs associated with popular devotion to saints.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Beasts of the Modern Age

21st January 2015 - Dr Claire Hardaker, Department of Linguistics & English Language, Lancaster University.

'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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Modern Communication

28th January 2015 - Dr Mary Searle-Chatterjee, Centre for Applied South Asian Studies

'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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Reflections on Islam

4th February 2015 - Professor Gill Baynes, Lancaster & Morecambe U3A.

'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 be introduced. The current and topical issue of medical delegation to health care professionals will be considered.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: The Medicalisation of Human Experience

11th February 2015 - Dr John Shepherd, University of Cumbria.

'Varieties of Contemporary Islam'

Islam today comes, so to speak, in many shapes and sizes. The 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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Islam in Society

18th February 2015 - Visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre to see the Current Exhibition.

'Returned triumphant: Loans to the Exhibition John Ruskin, Artist and Observer'

(Please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin Centre on campus at 12.50. Thanks)

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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Who Owns Public Art?

25th February 2015 - Claire Mumford, PhD Student, Open University.

'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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: The Value of Silence

4th March 2015 - Ella Good & Nicki Kent, Residence, an artist-led community in Bristol.

'A Decade With Mars - Artist Talk'

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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Space Exploration

11th March 2015 -Digital Lecture - Dame Barbara Monroe, CEO of St Christopher's Hospice and Hon Professor at Lancaster University Observatory on End of Life Care.

'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.

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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: Discussion on the Digital Lecture

8th October 2014 - Frances Sapsford, Neurological Physiotherapist and Senior Lecturer in Physiotherapy University of Cumbria.

'Neuroplasticity : How the brain adapts and changes with experience'

This talk will focus on neuroplasticity and how its principles are used by physiotherapists in treating conditions such as stroke.
An introduction to neuroplasticity will be given discussing how the brain is able to adapt and change. 10 principles for promoting neuroplasticity will be highlighted. Applications of these principles in the field of stroke rehabilitation will be discussed. The talk will end with an introduction to my own research project and an invitation to take part.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: ' Coping with Change '
Ignore it? Embrace it? Defy it? What coping mechanisms do we as individuals devise to cope with the challenges of accelerating change in our lives?

15th October 2014 - Dr Brian Hodgson, Lancaster University Ruskin Centre.

'Seating from Antiquity'

We are very pleased to welcome back Brian, who has recently completed his PhD. here at Lancaster University.

In this lecture an investigation will be made of Egyptian Greek and Roman seating furniture. And 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 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.

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.

22nd October 2014 - Diane Armstrong, Age UK.

'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!

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Living with Dementia'.
We share our experiences of caring for or about someone with Dementia and look at how local support could be improved.

29th October 2014 - The Spirit of '45 - Ken Loach Film

'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.'

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.

5th November 2014 - Rory Daly, Placements and Internships Manager, Lancaster University

'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.

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 .

12th November 2014 - Dr Hilary Walklett, Historian.

'Victorian Morality and Immorality'

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.

I 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."

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?

19th November 2014 - Visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Exhibition Centre to see the Current Exhibition

Permanence and Fragility: Paintings and Drawings by Victoria Crowe

(Please meet in the foyer of the Ruskin Centre on campus at 12.50. Thanks)

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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Thinking About our Legacy'
Following the screening of Emma Thompson’s film on Effie Gray, Ruskin’s wife, at The Dukes, we 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.

26th November 2014 - Dr Mary Searle-Chatterjee, Centre for Applied South Asian Studies

'Travel Writing World-wide in Historical Perspective'.

Debates about the imperial and euro-centric 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.

Followed by a Research & Discussion Forum: 'Travel Experiences'
Travel experiences. Travel Journals. 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.

3rd December 2014 - Anthony Greenwood, Lancaster University.

'Recent Developments with the Google Experience'

After the success of Anthony's previous Lunchtime Lecture, where he enlightened us to the possibilities opened up by Google's 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.

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?

10th December 2014 - Professor Alan Beattie, Lancaster University (retired)

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.

We have all worked hard and had a wonderful term, now it's time to put our feet up and eat cake!

Join us for a drink, a chat, a quiz and a laugh. It's time to celebrate!!!!

Academic Year 2013/2014

30th April 2014 – Jenefer Philp, Dept of Linguistics & English Language, Lancaster University.

‘Supporting Speakers of English as an Additional Language in Academic Contexts’

Jenefer Philp is a lecturer in the Department of Linguistics and English Language. She is Director of Studies for the Masters in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages/Teaching English as a Foreign Language, and for the majority of her students, English as an additional language. Her research centres on how languages are learned, and particularly on how classroom interaction can promote second language learning, for adults, adolescents and children.

‘In this session, we’ll focus on academic contexts and the particular difficulties for second language learners. In many respects, many of these difficulties can be common to all students, so we'll begin by looking at what lecturers and tutors do to support all students' language needs - no matter what their language background. This can include scaffolding learning through pre-teaching key vocabulary, activating students' prior knowledge and building background knowledge (Cummins, 2013), as well as providing models and explicitly drawing attention to features of academic language. I'll illustrate this from research that has been carried out in school contexts, noting principles and observations that are true for adult learners too. We'll discuss needs specific to students with English as an additional language, and finish by considering ways we can support such students, either as members of the University or of the larger Lancaster community.’

7th May 2014 – Val Bissland, University of Strathclyde.

‘Memory: Staying in the driving seat’

‘Normal changes in the brain throughout life affect memory – responding, retaining, recalling and interpreting information and events. Awareness of some changes can make people worry unnecessarily. Some can be softened using memory strategies and aids,and others can be slowed by a lifestyle and mindset that help the brain remodel itself.

Learn how your memory is embedded in the brain, and what researchers are discovering about ‘rewiring’ and staying in the driving seat!

14th May 2014 – Visit to Lancaster Storey Gallery Exhibition.

Alive: In the face of Death

An exhibition from world famous photographer Rankin.

As part of the events taking place to mark Dying Matters Awareness Week we are having a visit to the exhibition of works by English portrait and fashion photographer John Rankin Waddell at the Storey Gallery in Lancaster.

In this exhibition Rankin sets out to explore and challenge our perceptions of death.
Through his lens, the stories of those touched by death are revealed.

Please gather in the corridor outside the exhibitions space (by the stained glass windows) at 12.50.

21st May 2014 – Andy Hornby, Musicologist, Author and Historian.

‘The Winders of Wyresdale’

A presentation with slides and musical illustration about the music of the Winder family of Wyresdale.

Edward and James Winder of Greenbank near Dolphinholme, played fiddle in the village band in the early 1800s. Their music, comprising jigs, reels, hornpipes and quadrilles, song tunes and baroque minuets was hand-written in manuscript books, and forms one of the most complete and important collections of folk music in the country.

Another Winder, (unrelated but familiar to the Wyresdale family) was a dancing master teaching the elegant accomplishment of dancing to ambitious Georgian families in newly affluent Lancaster. He also left a hand-written tunebook from 1789.

The next generation of Wyresdale Winders played fashionable quadrilles up to the First World War, and popular foxtrots and quicksteps up to the 1920s. They were visited by the great English folk music collector Cecil Sharp in 1910 to record a peculiar dance involving three men kicking each other on the backside! Their descendant Bill Winder, a retired builder from Dolphinholme, keeps the family tradition alive playing keyboard in a vocal duo.

In his new book, "The Winders of Wyresdale", Andy Hornby has edited the complete tunebooks and included entertaining and informative background notes on the tunes themselves. In an extended introduction, he illustrates and explains their place in the Georgian world.

For further information and to purchase copies of the book, see

28th May 2014 – Peter Schofield, Project Officer, Oxford Archaeology.

‘A Quick Introduction to the Practice of Landscape Archaeology and a Look at the Results of Some Community Archaeology Projects Undertaken in 2013’

Peter Schofield is an archaeologist currently employed as a Project Officer by Oxford Archaeology, and working out of their northern office based in Lancaster. He specialises in the field of landscape archaeology in mostly mountainous contexts. Peter also kindly supplied the photographs of the Silverdale Hoard which appear on this website.

“I have often been asked the questions ‘Have you found any treasure?’, closely followed by ‘Have you been on Time Team?’, and between gnashed teeth I can honestly say negative to both questions. That is because I look at lumps and bumps on the ground, rarely picking up my trowel in anger to ineffectually prod at the earth. I look for any surface evidence of past human activity that has left tangible archaeological monuments, settlements, field-systems, and in some instances whole landscapes behind. That is mostly not what Joe Public understand as ‘Treasure’ but with a bit of explanation about landscapes that often changes their perception and I get a ‘Wow that sounds like a really interesting job!’”

In this Lunchtime Lecture Peter will look at the results of some recent community archaeology projects:

Windermere Reflections - A project run with the Lake District National Park and the National Trust looking at mining and quarrying sites in the water catchment of Windermere Lake.

Ravensheugh Crags Survey - A project run with Altogether Archaeology and Northumberland National Park looking at a moorland landscape just north of Hadrian's Wall and surveying rock art and a prehistoric cairnfield.

Standingstone Rigg Survey - A project run with Altogether Archaeology and Northumberland National Park looking at a prehistoric stone row.

Long Meg and her Daughters - A project run with Altogether Archaeology using an unmanned aerial vehicle to survey the stone circle.

Peter hosts a beautiful landscape archeology blog entitled ‘Upland Pete’, which is full of fascinating tales of his work and leisure pursuits, along with some wonderful photographs:

4th June 2014 – Dr Hilary Walklate, Historian

‘Vladimir IlyichLenin: His Life and Times (Part 1)’

Dr Hilary returns to present two Lunchtime Lectures on the subject of Lenin.

Regarding Lenin, Wikipedia states…

‘Vladimir Ilyich Lenin was a Russian communist revolutionary, politician and political theorist. He served as the leader of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic from 1917, and then concurrently as Premier of the Soviet Union from 1922, until his death. Under his administration, the Russian Empire was dissolved and replaced by the Soviet Union, a one-party socialist state; industry and businesses were nationalized, and socialist reforms implemented in all areas of society.

Born to a wealthy middle-class family in Simbirsk, Lenin gained an interest in revolutionary leftist politics following the execution of his brother Aleksandr in 1887. Expelled from Kazan State University for participating in anti-Tsarist protests, he devoted the following years to a law degree and to radical politics, becoming a Marxist. In 1893 he moved to St Petersburg, and became a senior figure in the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (RSDLP).’

We have enjoyed a number of lectures by Hilary regarding important figures of Russian history and we expect his two lectures on Lenin (a reduced version of a longer course he runs) to be equally enjoyable.

11th June 2014 – Dr Hilary Walklate, Historian

‘Vladimir IlyichLenin: His Life and Times (Part 2)’

Dr Hilary continues with his second lecture on the subject of the Russian revolutionary, politician and political theorist.

Also from Wikipedia...

‘Lenin played a senior role in orchestrating the October Revolution in 1917, which led to the overthrow of the Provisional Government and the establishment of the Russian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic, the world's first constitutionally socialist state. Immediately afterwards, the new government under Lenin's leadership proceeded to implement socialist reforms, including the transfer of estates and crown lands to workers' soviets. He supported world revolution and immediate peace with the Central Powers, agreeing to a punitive treaty that turned over a significant portion of the former Russian Empire to Germany. The treaty was voided after the Allies won the war. In 1921 Lenin proposed the New Economic Policy, a system of state capitalism that started the process of industrialisation and recovery from the Civil War. In 1922, the Russian SFSR joined former territories of the Russian Empire in becoming the Soviet Union, with Lenin elected as its leader.

After his death, Marxism–Leninism developed into a variety of schools of thought, namely Stalinism, Trotskyism and Maoism. Lenin remains a controversial and highly divisive world figure. Detractors label him a dictator whose administration oversaw multiple human rights abuses, while supporters reject this criticism and promote him as a champion of the working class. Lenin had a significant influence on the international Communist movement and was one of the most influential and controversial figures of the 20th century.’

18th June 2014 – Franco Manni, Visiting Lecturer and CLG Steering Group Member

‘England as Seen by an Italian’

As most of you know, Franco has been here in the UK, lecturing, volunteering, observing and learning since the end of 2013. He has been invaluable in the work he has carried out for the CLG, providing excellent lectures, increasing our membership, as well as proving to be a great friend to us all.

In this Lunchtime Lecture Franco will give us some insight into the things he has learned in his time here in Lancaster.

25th June 2014 – Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Art Gallery

'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: ). This will give us all a chance to reflect on the year, before we all go our separate ways for the summer.

15th January 2014 - Anthony Greenwood, Lancaster University.

'Joining the Google Family'

Anthony kicks off our term with a lecture providing a general introduction to the Google suite of programs, including Gmail, social media (Google+) and cloud storage.

Along with a discussion of the popular ‘Social Layer’ Google+, which aims to bring together a diverse set of applications into a single experience, Anthony will explain the importance of Google integration into the Android system. Android is a leading platform currently used on many smartphones and tablets, which provides an increasingly popular third way beyond the long established Microsoft and Apple platforms.

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.

22nd January 2014 - Frano Manni, Teacher of History and Philosophy, Brescia, Italy,

'Tolkien and the Great Philosophers'

In his works Tolkien never refers to the great philosophers by name, neither classical figures such as Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Descartes, Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer or Marx, nor his contemporaries such as Freud, Bergson, Croce, Dewey, Russell, Wittgenstein, Husserl, Popper or Ryle.

Why is this?

Does this mirror an ignorance of philosophy exhibited by many of the main authors throughout history?

Franco doesn’t think so, and after a keen study of the subject he provides evidence of Tolkien's debt to a range of philosophers, even if Tolkien’s peculiar attitude forbade him to acknowledge this explicitly.

Franco is the author of a number of books and journal articles including:


Laicità e religione in Piero Gobetti (1986)
Gramsci e il liberalismo (1988)
Georges Sorel e la teoria neoidealistica della storia (1989)
Gobetti e la filosofia (1998)
Norberto Bobbio e Benedetto Croce (2010)
A System of Ethics as a Letter to a Friend (2013)


Endore (1999-2014)
Introduzione a Tolkien (2002)
Mitopoiesi: fantasia e storia in Tolkien (2005)
Tolkien tra filologia e filosofia (2010)
A Eulogy of Finitude (2012)

29th January 2014- Dr John Welshman, Department of History, Lancaster University.

‘Titanic: The Last Night of a Small Town’

Group members may recall a previous visit John made to the CLG where he discussed an earlier book, ‘Churchill's Children: The Evacuee Experience in Wartime Britain’.

We are very pleased to welcome John back to discuss his new book about the ill-fated Titanic.

‘John Welshman's research interests are at the interface of contemporary history, social policy, and public health. He was a member of the Wellcome Trust's History of Medicine Funding Committee (2006-09), and his current work falls into five main areas: · the use of autobiographical material in the writing of history; the history of the debate over transmitted deprivation in the period 1972-82, and its links with current policy on child poverty and social exclusion; the history of the concepts of unemployability and worklessness; the history of tuberculosis, medical examination, and migration, in both the UK and Australia; and the history of care in the community since 1948, especially for people with learning disabilities.

His books include Underclass: A History of the Excluded, 1880-2000 (London and New York, Continuum, 2006), and a volume edited with Jan Walmsley, Community Care in Perspective: Care, Control, and Citizenship (London and New York, Palgrave, 2006). His history of the debate over transmitted deprivation in the 1970s has been published as From Transmitted Deprivation to Social Exclusion: Policy, Poverty, and Parenting (Bristol, Policy Press, 2007, paperback edition 2012). He has published a social history of the evacuation of schoolchildren during the Second World War, Churchill's Children: The Evacuee Experience in Wartime Britain (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2010). His most recent book is Titanic: The Last Night of a Small Town (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2012).’

5th February 2014- Dawn Keyse, Dacrelands Centre for Health.

'Nutrition and Wellbeing'

Dawn works with Dacrelands Centre for Health here in Lancaster, and has a background in Natural Nutrition, Kinesiology (the scientific study of human movement), NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) and Homeopathy. She has a background in teaching in the primary sector but now works with people of all ages and with both physical and emotional conditions.

In this Lunchtime Lecture, Dawn explores the value of nutrition and its relationship to wellbeing.

Dawn will be running a series of talks and workshops on the subject of nutrition culminating with a 4 day master class, at a number of venues in Lancaster and Halton during February and March 2014.

For more information visit her website:

12th February 2014 - Dr Noel Cass (Organisation, Work & Technology, Lancaster University) and Liz Horn, LESS (Local & Effective Sustainable Solutions) Lancaster (a social enterprise promoting sustainable living in Lancaster district).

'The Less is More Game'

'For many years the ‘government-approved’ (to varying degrees!) approach to tackling over-consumption , waste and climate change has been based on treating individuals as ‘rational utility-maximisers’: who weigh up pros and cons, cost and convenience and CO2, and act accordingly. “Provide information, and people’s behaviour will change”. And yet the trends in society are in the opposite direction – more travel, consumer goods, emissions and waste.

LESS propose using the appeal of ‘gaming’ to make adopting ‘pro-environmental’ actions and habits fun rather than worthy – harnessing people’s willingness to play for its own reward, for ‘kudos’, or in friendly competition for ‘high scores’. We are developing such a game system for Lancaster and want feedback on how we propose it to work, as well as getting you involved as players and challenge setters! There is also a ‘hands-on’ way to contribute to the more academic side of the project, collecting your views on how and why people do take action on the environment.'

This is an exciting project for all.
You can sign up now to receive a daily sustainable challenge during the period 10th - 14th February.
Why not take a look at the website and get involved!

19th February 2014 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Art Gallery.

'The Master's Hand: Drawings by G.F. Watts, from the Watts Gallery'

Those of you who have attended in the past will know that we try to take in all of the exhibitions at the Ruskin as they are generally excellent.

Wikipedia says of G.F. Watts...

'George Frederic Watts, OM (23 February 1817 – 1 July 1904) was a popular English Victorian painter and sculptor associated with the Symbolist movement. Watts became famous in his lifetime for his allegorical works, such as Hope (click to see image) and Love and Life. These paintings were intended to form part of an epic symbolic cycle called the "House of Life", in which the emotions and aspirations of life would all be represented in a universal symbolic language.'

More information about the Ruskin Centre can be found here:

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the roundabout) in the run up to 1pm. After viewing the exhibition group members may want to adjourn to a café for refreshments and a chance to discuss the artwork.

26th February 2014 - Dr Fiona Frank, Director, Green Elephant Cooperative.

'The Story of Halton Mill'

'Halton Mill was a disused engineering factory, destined for demolition, till the folks from Lancaster Cohousing moved in next door. Motivated by a condition in their planning permission for their eco-cohousing community - that in order to purchase the site the Mill had to be run as an employment centre for at least ten years - some residents from the community took it upon themselves to manage the Mill.

Four years and a £400,000 facelift later (thanks to some government grants, a loan from Lancaster Cohousing, and a £100,000 mortgage from the Ecology Building Society), Halton Mill has achieved the highest rating possible for its Energy Performance Certificate, almost unheard of for an industrial building of this age.

Dr Fiona Frank, who lives in the cohousing project next to the Mill and is one of the directors of Green Elephant, the non profit making cooperative which has been set up to manage Halton Mill on behalf of Lancaster Cohousing, will talk about how the vision of 'an ecological workplace with a community feel' has been transformed into reality, the creative and talented individuals and organisations which have already signed up to work at the Mill, and how Mill tenants are already changing their attitude to 'going to work'.

Fiona will also touch on the history of this proud building - once famous for precision engineering, but also famous for a herd of mechanical elephants it manufactured in the 1960s and sent out to seasides across Britain.'

While working at the Department of Continuing Education at Lancaster University, Fiona set up and ran the Senior Learners' Programme (SLP), the precursor to the Continuing Learning Group. We are very pleased to welcome her back to talk about another of her life-changing projects.

5th March 2014 - Dr Trevor Crawford and Claire Kelly, Lancaster University.

'Using Eye Gaze in Dementia Research'

'For many patients the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease arrives too late for any effective interventions. Recent work using eye movements in combination with neuropsychological tests as a diagnostic marker for Alzheimer ’s disease suggests that a future clinical test, which could be used to detect early disease, may be possible. Our recent work is aimed at developing new biological markers that will improve the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease. The work in my lab is aimed at finding an early cognitive marker of the disease and tracking the objective changes in the severity of the illness. Our recent work has also explored the relationship between the inhibitory control of eye gaze in Alzheimer's disease and working memory. If this work succeeds we may enable new treatments to be targeted at an early stage in the course of the disease.'

Trevor and Claire visit us with an outline of exciting developments in this highly relevant area of research.

12th March 2014 - Rose Chard, PhD Student, Lancaster University.

'Further Research into Fuel Poverty'

You may remember Rose from a previous visit she made to the CLG a while ago. Many changes have taken place to the economy and standards of living in general since that last visit. We are very pleased to welcome Rose back to present us with further research findings.

'Rising energy prices are affecting many homes in England and the problem looks set to continue for a large variety of households. Fuel poor households are those that cannot afford to heat their home adequately. This talk will explain my research that has looked into what it is like to experience fuel poverty on a daily basis and what help and support is offered. This research worked with three local organisations around England and interviewed older residents in their home.'

19th March 2014 - Centre for North West Regional Studies Presents...

Study Afternoon: Literary Landscapes in the Digital Age.

To finish the term we are planning to attend an event organised by Lancaster University's Centre for North West Regional Studies. It is a paying event and requires attendees to book beforehand.

Further details and booking can be done via this link:

Venue: Meeting Room, Friends' Meeting House, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster.

1.30 p.m. If you would like to meet before the lectures, tea and coffee will be available.

2.00 p.m. ‘Mapping the Lakes’: A Fresh Look at a National Literary Landscape – Christopher Donaldson, Patricia Murrieta-Flores, C. J. Rupp and Ian Gregory, Spatial Humanities Project, Lancaster University

3.00 p.m. Coffee/Tea & Biscuits

3.30 p.m. The Journeys of George Fox 1652-1653 – a pilot electronic project – Alison Findlay, Hilary Hinds and Meg Twycross, Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University

4.30 p.m. Close of study afternoon

Fee for this event: £10/£8 for Friends and Patrons of the Centre (fee includes coffee/tea & biscuits)
Getting to the venue: the Friends’ Meeting House is conveniently located alongside Lancaster rail station and is short walk from Common Garden Street, which is a major interchange for local buses. Lancaster bus station is around a ten minute walk from the Meeting House. The nearest car park is on Dallas Road.

Accessibility: the Friends’ Meeting House has wheelchair access, a wheelchair-accessible toilet and wheelchair-friendly parking behind the building. Please let us know if you require a parking space on site due to limited mobility as we will be happy to reserve one for you. There is a hearing loop system available.

Our events are extremely popular and many book up within the first few weeks. We strongly recommend that you book early to avoid disappointment. If you do have to cancel your booking please give us four full working days’ notice and we will happily send you a refund. Please note that these refunds can now only be made via electronic means because the University no longer issues cheques. Should you require a refund we will need a note of your account name, account number and sort-code. Payments originally made by credit card can be reimbursed via the same card details.

Please note: We do not enrol people on the day unless this has been arranged in advance.


9th October 2013 - Franco Manni, Teacher of History and Philosophy, Brescia, Italy, - 'Exploring the parallels between Tolkien's creation of The Lord of The Rings and the Second World War'

'This September 2013 is the 40th anniversary of the death of John R. R. Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings. He wrote his novel during the very years of the preparing and fighting of the Second World War. Tolkien in his thoughts and feelings was so much impressed by those great facts, that the fictional War of the Ring was strictly linked to the real war in the themes, characters and even in the timetable of the military events. Indeed, Franco Manni, after a short outline of Tolkien's life and works, tells the story of the composition of the novel (often stopped and then restarted again) in parallel with the history of WWII.'

A little about Franco...

'Since 1986 till now I have been teaching in several Italian State “Licei” (a kind of Grammar School, set in Italy since 1923) the following subjects: in the first 4 years Italian Language and Literature, afterwards and till the present day History and Philosophy.

Since 1999 and till 2012 I have been teaching 20 Evening Classes for Adults (each two months long) on various topics of Philosophy, organised by the Town Council of Brescia from 1999 till 2008, and by UISP, a non-profit organisation, from 2008 till 2012. I mention here just the classes dealing with Ethics and Religion : Aquinas's Questio I-II,2 De his in quibus consistit Beatitudo (1999), The Systematic of Ethics (1999), Philosophy of Religion (2003), Virtues and Vices in Ancient Philosophy (2007) , Virtues and Vices in XIX century Philosophy (2009), Theoretical and Practical Reason (2010), The Cardinal Virtues in Antiquity and Middle Ages (2012).'

We are extremely pleased to welcome Franco to Lancaster to work with the Steering Group, assist with publicity of the programme and also to present a number of lectures throughout this term. His knowledge of History and Philosophy, his extensive experience in teaching and his deep understanding of the life and work of J. R. R. Tolkien promise to provide us with some fascinating insights into a broad range of subjects over the coming months.

16th October 2013 - Dr Sue Dewhurst, Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Physiology,

University of Cumbria.

'Balance in Older Age- What happens and what can we do about it?'

'Maintaining balance is essential to successful ageing and maintaining independence. With increasing age balance control becomes more difficult and consequently the risk of falls increases. This lecture will explain the age related changes to the different senses that contribute to making us aware of our body position in relation to our environment and our response systems responsible for reacting to wobbles and unforeseen disturbances. We will offer explanations as to why, with increasing age, we may miss vital clues to changes in our environment or changes to in our body position. Most importantly we will highlight simple interventions which can improve balance control and consequently reduce the risk of falls.'

Dr Susan Dewhurst visits usfrom the Active Ageing Research Group at the University of Cumbria. Dr Dewhurst is in exercise physiology with expertise in the age related changes in the neuromuscular system.

23rd October 2013 - Juliano Ferreira Arcuri, Visiting Researcher, Division of Health Research, Lancaster University.

'Assessing Exercise Capacity in Healthy Older People'

Juliano is visiting Lancaster from the University of São Carlos where he is with the Department of Physiotherapy. The focus of his research is assessment and reproducibility in exercise testing of older people. Juliano will give an outline of his research and, hopefully, share some of his results.

30th October 2013 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Art Gallery.

'Fragments of Nature'

Those of you who have attended in the past will know that we try to take in all of the exhibitions at the Ruskin as they are generally excellent.

'Carrying on from the successful ‘natural world’ themed exhibitions, ‘Ruskin’s Flora’ (2011) and ‘Sketching from Nature’ (2008) we return once again to this rich and wonderful theme. ‘Fragments of Nature’ revisits elements of drawing from the natural world, looking at the joy of landscape as well as detailed studies of flora and fauna. Included in the exhibition are drawings by John Ruskin, his family, and friends. Sketches and notes from private letters and diaries will also be included along with less frequently exhibited works from the collection.'

More information about the Ruskin Centre can be found here:

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the roundabout) in the run up to 1pm. After viewing the exhibition group members may want to adjourn to a café for refreshments and a chance to discuss the artwork.

6th November 2013 - Franco Manni, Teacher of History and Philosophy, Brescia, Italy,

'An Overview of the Ethical-Political History of Italy'

Visiting academic, Franco, follows his extremely successful earlier lecture on the subject of Tolkien with an equally interesting lecture rooted firmly in psyche his native Italy.

In the press and across the internet one can find plenty of information regarding Italian politics -acts of Parliament, Government decisions, details of the judicial trials of Silvio Berlusconi, statements of various political parties etc. In this Lunchtime Lecture Franco aims to look at some of the underlying issues at play. Through an outline of Italian history, he tries to find a key for analysis of the main political features of Italian politics today.

12th* November 2013 - Emma Halliday, Lancaster University

'Public Engagement – What’s in it for older adults and higher education?'

This is a joint workshop hosted by Lancaster University researchers and the Continuing Learning Group for local organisations, researchers and members of the public.

Join us to discuss and debate...

- What are the genuine mutual benefits of engagement?

- How can universities improve how they engage with older adults in research, teaching, and volunteering activities?

Booking is essential. Please contact or 01524 592980 to register interest

* Please note that this is a variation on our regular format. It will take place in the Friends Meeting House on a Tuesday (not a Wednesday) and will run instead of the usual on-campus Lunchtime Lecture for this particular week.

This event will run from 1- 4pm.

20th November 2013 - Celia Cole, Ruskin College, Oxford.

'Life, Ruskin College and Hogarth'

We are very happy to welcome back CLG group member Celia from her 3 year degree at Ruskin College in Oxford. In this Lunchtime Lecture Celia will focus on her time at Ruskin and her studies of William Hogarth, the quintessentially English illustrator, social critic and editorial cartoonist.

27th November 2013 - Dr Amanda Bingley, Lecturer in Health Research, Lancaster University.

'Working in a Rural Environment: Is it the healthy option?'

'As a cultural geographer Amanda has an ongoing interest in psychoanalytic geographies, innovative creative arts and sensory methodologies. She has drawn on psychotherapeutic theory and methods (in particular Object Relations Theory) in her research. Amanda has a background of many years experience in healthcare working in humanistic psychotherapy and homeopathic medicine.'

4th December 2013 - Visit to Lancaster City Museum and Historic Talk.

'The Silverdale Hoard'

We are very pleased to announce that we have been able to organise a visit to see the recently discovered 'Silverdale Hoard', currently held in the Lancaster City Museum, with an accompanying talk about this wonderful find.

NOTE: Please meet at the Museum in the run up to 1pm. Thanks.

11th December 2013 - Digital Lecture to end the term and the year.

'The Berlusconi Show'

We have decided to conclude this term with a digital lecture which will serve as a follow on to Franco's earlier lecture on Italy.
This digital lecture will consist of a screening of a film piece on the subject of Silvio Berlusconi.

Created by the BBC and screened in 2010, The Berlusconi Show explores the life of this controversial figure with attention paid to his business dealings, his political dealings and his personal life.

From the BBC website...

Sex scandals, divorce and a brutal assault in Milan, 2009 was a tough year for Silvio Berlusconi. Reporter Mark Franchetti returns to the country of his birth to assess one of the world's most controversial and flamboyant leaders. Franchetti finds an Italy divided between those who love Silvio and those who hate him.

His story reads like a soap opera, but, despite the public blunders and scandals, despite the allegations of Mafia collusion and financial corruption, Berlusconi seems to thrive in the face of adversity. Few other leaders could survive - can Berlusconi continue to defy his critics?

The screening will be followed by a short discussion on the theme.


Academic Year 2012/2013

24th April 2013 - Dr Mary Turner, Research Fellow, Faculty of Health and Medicine - 'Unpacking The Home'

"After completing her first degree in English literature Mary trained as a nurse at the Middlesex Hospital in London. She specialised in oncology nursing early in her career, and completed an oncology nursing certificate at Sheffield's Weston Park Hospital.

She then moved to Oxford where she worked first as a research sister with the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, and then as nurse manager of the regional bone marrow transplant unit. During this time she undertook a research Masters degree at King's College London. This led to her PhD research, a grounded theory study of nurses' personal involvement in relationships with cancer patients, for which she was awarded a 3-year studentship from the Department of Health.

Having gained her PhD in 2000 Mary returned to clinical practice as a Macmillan Breast Care Specialist Nurse, first at Furness General Hospital and then at Royal Lancaster Infirmary. She undertook a Macmillan Management Fellowship, and was then seconded to Cumbria and Lancashire Strategic Health Authority, where as Assistant Director of Nursing she had responsibility for leading on End of Life Care. She also managed the Preferred Place of Care project for Lancashire and South Cumbria Cancer Network.

In February 2007 Mary took up her current post as a research associate at Lancaster University and joined the growing team in the International Observatory on End of Life Care. Her role is to support Professor Sheila Payne in developing new research into hospice care."

"This research answers important questions about the impact on both family carers and the home environment when an older person is cared for in the home until the very end of their life. It will deepen our understanding of the realities and complexities of dying at home, and the views and perspectives of bereaved family carers. It will also shed light on what help and support should be provided for family carers to enable them to care for their loved one at home at the end of their life."

1st May 2013 - Janet Ross-Mills -'Travels in Cuba in 2012'

Steering Group member Janet recently travelled to Cuba staying in the heart of the slums of Havana. In this lecture Janet discusses how her ideas about values, prices and worth were turned upside down and inside out by the society she witnessed. Janet tells us about the condition of the buildings in Havana and will talk about the fears for the future of some of the least well maintained buildings, as well as discussing the vehicles, many of which were built in the USA and imported before the revolution. She will also touch on the changes that are currently taking place both politically and economically.

8th May 2013 - Prof Elena Semino - 'Why Metaphor Matters in Communication'

"My research interests are in stylistics, metaphor theory and analysis, and the medical humanities.
Stylistics: cognitive stylistics; corpus stylistics; mind style in prose fiction.
Metaphor theory and analysis: metaphor in literature, politics, science, health communication, end-of-life care; metaphor and embodied simulation; corpus approaches to the study of metaphor.
Medical humanities: representations of autism and mental illness in fictional and non-fictional narratives; (figurative) language, creativity and chronic pain."

"Before joining the Department, I taught Italian as a foreign language at Napier Polytechnic (Edinburgh) and Lancaster University.
I hold a Visiting Professorship in the Faculty of Foreign Languages at Fuzhou University in China."

15th May 2013 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Art Gallery

'Teaching Silkworms to Spin: Ruskin and Textiles'

"An exhibition in two sections, it begins with Victorian John Ruskin’s theories of ethical textile production, then offers examples of work inspired by Ruskin from the late 19th Century to the present. These include period examples such as the Langdale Linen Industry, through to contemporary pieces by the Lancs & Lakes Guild of Spinners, Weavers and Dyers."

22nd May 2013 - Dr Hilary Walklett - 'Jiggers and Spelks: The Ports of Morecambe Bay'

" Morecambe Bay has been a thoroughfare for goods and passengers since earliest times. You will take a trip through time, looking at the effect that sea-trade had on life around the Bay."

Following on from his fascinating recent Lunchtime Lectures on the subject of Russia, Hilary returns with a very different lecture focussing on the local area.

29th May 2013 - Ghayas Chowdhury - 'Muslims in Contemporary Britain'

"This discussion seeks to develop an understanding of Muslims in contemporary Britain. The discussion begins by profiling the British Muslim community. There is an outline of some socio-demographic trends of British Muslim societies, including aspects such as size and geographical distribution of British Muslim populations, ethnicity, employment, age, gender, household and residential patterns as well as health and well-being characteristics.

Next is to provide a cultural narrative of British Muslim societal developments since post Second World War. This discussion observes what was happening amongst British Muslim societies before the 1970’s where there were significant race relations problems, after the 1970’s which was seen as the period for embracing the idea of multiculturalism and the need to understand diverse societies, leading on to the most recent decades, such as the 1990s and early 21st century which witnessed the 9/11 and 7/7 attacks. The discussion considers some of the impacts of such events on British Muslims. Certain themes emerge such as the rise of Islamaphobia and the discussion gives consideration to some of the wider implications of such phenomenon for British Muslim societies."

Following on from his excellent Lunchtime Lecture last term on Islam and environmental issues, Ghayas returns to discuss Muslims in the context of Britain today.

5th June 2013 - Jeff Cooper and Christine Cooper - 'The Dymock Poets'

Jeff Cooper, author of Lascelles Abercrombie and the Origin of the Poets’ Colony at Dymock, and his wife Christine, visit us to present a lecture on this interesting group of poets who lived and worked around the village of Dymock in Gloucestershire prior to the start of the first world war and whose work has been described as 'the Georgian Style' by some and the precursor to Modernism by others.

12th June 2013 - Dr Marije Michel - 'Myths and Truths about Second Language Learning'

“In my research I focus on second language acquisition. I am particularly interested in cognitive processes of memory and attention underlying language learning. I wrote my thesis on task complexity and interaction during task-based L2 performance at the University of Amsterdam (Netherlands). As a post-doctoral researcher at Mannheim University (Germany) I focused on preschool teachers' language training competences. Currently, I work on projects about the external validation of task complexity and on priming during task-based computer mediated communication.”

19th June 2013 - David Pedder and Janet Ross-Mills - 'Online Learning Opportunities For All'

In recent times, online learning has really begun to come into its own with a broad range of professional lectures on a host of subjects just waiting to be viewed or downloaded. Steering Group members Dave and Janet demonstrate some of the vast array of exciting online learning courses, lectures and educational resources available free of charge. There will be chance to discuss the pros and cons of online learning and, if you have used any online resources of late, you might want to share your experiences with the group.

26th June 2013 - End of Term Celebrations - A Bite To Eat On Campus

In this, our final session of this academic year, we will converge on one of the many eateries on campus for a leisurely bite to eat, a drink and a good old chat around the Lunchtime Lectures we have enjoyed this academic year. The venue is still to be decided. Please meet outside Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 at 12.55 as usual and we will take it from there.


16th January 2013 - Dr Hilary Walklett - 'Leon Trotsky: His Life and Times'

“Trotsky is, to many people, a shadowy, mysterious figure whose name is usually used, in this country, to denote “loony-left” political factions. Yet he was a key figure in both the 1905 and 1917 revolutions in Russia. He was “written out” of Russian history by Stalin and eventually assassinated – which in itself is a clue to how important he was deemed to be by the Communist Regime. This lecture will look – necessarily rather briefly – at his background and development from son of a successful peasant farmer to a great leader and towering intellectual of left-wing philosophy.”

This lecture will act as a chance for further exploration of Russian political events, which Hilary began last term with his lecture on the Russian Revolution. Hilary has run a number of courses on the subject in recent years. He is kindly condensing those into single lectures. This lecture promises to be packed with information and, if his previous lectures are anything to go on, will be very colourful and stimulating.

23rd January 2013 - Harris Koloudis - PhD Student, Dept of Sociology - 'Developing a Homeshare Scheme in Lancashire'.

Note, this lecture will take place in Fylde Lecture Theatre 1 (next-door-but-one to our usual venue).

"Harris is a first-year, PhD student at the Department of Sociology. He is originally from Greece but he has studied and worked in the UK for more than 10 years (although you would not be able to tell by his accent which has hardly improved within that time). Prior to starting his PhD, he was working in adult social care commissioning for Lancashire County Council. The outline of the topic he will be presenting can be found below. Harris hopes that you will find this interesting enough to be persuaded to to join him as co-researchers in this piece of research undertaken in partnership with Lancashire County Council.

Welfare services in the UK are changing massively. Successive governments have been trying to square the circle of meeting population needs and demands without committing more resources to welfare provision. One answer that has gained prominence in recent years is that of 'social capital'. Along with 'choice and control', 'early intervention and prevention' and 'universal services', 'social capital' is a cornerstone of new policies and practices. Loosely defined, 'social capital' refers to the network of local, community relationships that maintain, protect and enhance the well-being of individuals supporting them emotionally and practically in everyday life and in emergencies. So, the term may refer to a wide array of things, e.g. local, voluntary associations of common interest e.g. flower arranging; giving and receiving practical help to neighbours e.g. with gardening, or keeping an eye on children playing in the garden; the sociability afforded by the local pub. The question then arises for central and local government of how to influence these social networks that people build between them. One answer has been to try to facilitate meaningful interactions between people and one way of doing this is to help people with complementary needs to find each other. Volunteering and timebank initiatives have been two practical developments of this idea. My project aims to explore a third: Homeshare.

Homeshare is a way of helping people to help each other. In Homeshare, someone who needs help to live independently in his or her own home is matched with someone who has a housing need and can provide a little support. "Householders" are often older people who own or who are tenants in their home, but have developed some support needs. "Householders" can also be disabled people or people with mental or physical ill health. "Homesharers" are often young people entering the labour market, public sector keyworkers, students or those facing a life change such as a divorce or bereavement. The homesharer provides an agreed level of support to the householder whilst living in their home for an agreed length of time without paying rent and maybe in an area or property that would have been financially out of their reach.

But the idea of a Homeshare service for Lancashire raises many questions. Is it workable in Lancashire? Is it worthwhile and appropriate? What do we know about social isolation in Lancashire and to what extent is Homeshare an appropriate response? What are the barriers to housing in Lancashire and to what extent is Homeshare an appropriate response? How should a Homeshare service be developed and by whom? What do we know about Homeshare schemes elsewhere in the UK and across the world?

30th January 2013 - Dr Rachel Cooper, Senior lecturer in Philosophy - 'Classification of Mental Illness'

"My major research interests lie within the philosophy of science and medicine. My research to date has culminated in two books, and a third is underway. My first monograph Classifying Madness(Springer, 2005) concerns philosophical problems with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, more commonly known as the D.S.M....

...My second book is called Psychiatry and the Philosophy of Science and came out in Acumen's Philosophy of Science series in 2007. This book examines the ways in which psychiatric science is like and unlike more established sciences. The book is structured around five features that distinguish psychiatric science from many other sciences. These are that a) The subject matter of psychiatry is contested, b) Psychiatry employs particular modes of explanation, c) Mental health professionals work within different paradigms, d) Psychiatry is problematically value-laden, and e) Psychiatry is essentially action-guiding...

...Over the next couple of years I plan to write a book on the concept of disease. This book will develop the account of disease that I proposed in my 2002 paper "Disease". On this account, by "disease" we mean a condition that it is a bad thing to have, that is such that we consider the afflicted person to be unlucky, and that can potentially be appropriately medically treated. The book will develop this account through three case studies, examining Deafness, Female Sexual Dysfunction, and ADHD. Together these illustrate how it becomes unclear whether a condition is pathological in cases where it is uncertain whether all of my three criteria for disorder are met. Thus, Deafness is problematic because it may not be bad, Female Sexual Dysfunction is arguably too common to be a disorder, and many question whether the symptoms of ADHD are an appropriate object of medical, as opposed to disciplinary or educational, concern."

6th February 2013 - The Dukes Theatre - 'Pierrepoint - The Hangman's Tale'

Please note we will meet in the Dukes Foyer at 10.45ish for the start of the performance at 11.00

Tickets should be bought beforehand to avoid disappointment.

'Pierrepoint - The Hangman's Tale'

By Peter Harrison
Directed by Kevin Dyer
With Martin Oldfield
1957. England’s most famous hangman Albert Pierrepoint is resigning. It’s time for him to tell his own story, the true story, of being the ‘Official Executioner’.
Lancashire pub landlord Albert has been following in his father’s footsteps for over 25 years as the last face to be seen by more than 400 men and women sentenced to death. In that time he has grown into something of a local celebrity.
Hear the chilling truth about a career in the civil service from the man whose executions included women, innocent men and war criminals.
With an outstanding central performance from Martin Oldfield as Albert Pierrepoint, this moving and honest production brings charm and humour as well as a unique perspective on the use of capital punishment in the British justice system.
There will be a thrilling talk in The Gallery before the performance on Tue 5 Feb at 6.15pm with Colin Penny (Museum Manager, The Shire Hall, Lancaster Castle). This talk is free, but please reserve a ticket in advance.CLICK HERE for more info.
Age guidance: 11+
BSL interpreted performance: Fri 15 Feb 7.45pm

Audio described performance: Wed 20 Feb 7.45pm


£5 - £16.50
Matinees: £8
Concessions a further £2 off (not including matinees)
Early Bird:

Book before Dec 31st and save a further £2 with our Early Bird offer

Thu 31 Jan 7.45pm, all tickets £5
Group Discount:

Buy 10+ tickets and save £1 per ticket

Buy 40+ tickets and save £2 per ticket

£8 and one teacher free with every ten pupils
Book tickets

[information courtesy of The Dukes Theatre website]

13th February 2013 - Anthony Greenwood- Information Officer, Dept of Health Research - Computer Related Session - Details to be Confirmed

Anthony is the Information Officer with the Department of Health Research and a great supporter of our programme. He will give a lecture on an aspect of computing decided between Himself and the us. At present this is undecided. Is there an aspect of computing that you would particularly like to hear a lecture on? We are currently gathering ideas and input from group members is very much appreciated. If you have a suggestion then please send it to us at we will keep you informed as to the subject matter over the next few weeks.

20th February 2013 - George Savona, 'The Arts and the Russian Revolution'

(Postponed from last term)

"New forms for the new age!" was the cultural battle-cry as the political and social upheaval of the early decades of the twentieth century in Russia both generated and was reflected in an extraordinarily prolific and radical diversity of artistic outputs. Such revolutionary aspiration, and its ultimate defeat as Lenin's wished-for utopia gave way to dystopia under Stalin, may be traced across the range of art forms: architecture (Vladimir Tatlin), cinema (Sergei Eisenstein), fashion (Olga Rozanova), literature (Alexandra Kollontai, Vladimir Mayakovsky), music (Dimitri Shostakovich), painting (Luiba Popova), photography (Alexander Rodchenko) and theatre (Vsevelod Meyerhold). Topics to be considered include the Commissariat of Enlightenment (the joint ministry of education and the arts); the demystification and democratisation of art as cultural production; the art into production movement; and the deployment of art as revolutionary propaganda.

27th February 2013 - Brian Hodgson, Doctoral Student of the Ruskin Centre - 'The Geometry of Gothic'

Nature and Gothic are not opposed in Gothic design, but the one controls the other--true or false?

Can we detect commonly used proportions in the overall plan of Gothic churches?

Why don't the cathedrals of Il-de France have central towers?

What rules are there in designing window tracery?

Why aren't true ellipses used in masonry?

These are just some of the issues Brian will touch upon in this exciting lecture.

Brian, regular lecturer for the CLG and also group member, is a Master Craftsman of The Worshipful Company of Carpenters, and The Worshipful Company of Joiners and Ceilers, The Carpenters Company and the City and Guilds. He is also a Licentiate of the City and Guild Institute and Fellow of the Institute of Carpenters. He has had responsibility for teaching, training and assessment and holds the Royal Society of Arts Training and Assessment Award. He has lectured in Colleges for 14 years as well as put these criteria to work in craft projects in the wider world.

(Please note, this is a change of subject matter from the previously listed theme of 'Tree Diseases')

6th March 2013 - Ghayas Chowdhury- 'Understanding Muslim Scholarly Thought Towards Contemporary Environmental Debates'

"One major aspect of modernity which Muslim scholars are dealing with is global environmental change. We are currently facing extensive resource depletion and human induced pollution that is adversely affecting natural and social systems. Various frameworks of contemporary Islamic thought have been proposed to understand the ways in which Muslims are responding to modernity including Tariq Ramadan’s (2004) spectrum of text and reason in his book tilted as “Western Muslims and the Future of Islam”. This spectrum may ideally be used to classify forms of thinking that different Muslims intellectuals are taking towards natural environment. Do these scholarly thinkers engage in the sole use of the Islamic textual tradition such as the Qur’an and the Prophetic Tradition (Sunnah) or do they opt for approaches that elevate human reason? Or quite simply do they capture both elements of text and reason in their responses towards the environmental crisis.

There are two elements that need consideration. First is “Contemporary Islam” which includes the following discourses: gender approaches towards the environment, vegetarianism and animal rights extending beyond instrumental value. These discourses originate from western environmentalism and seen as extra-Islamic or modernist ideals. Another discourse considered in this section of contemporary Islam is obstacles and solutions for Muslim environmental practice within Islamic nations. This theme is relevant here because it relates to Muslims in the modern period. Second is “Classical Islam” because although discourses discussed here do not originate in classical Islamic period, they do however make use of classical Islamic sources like Qur’an and Hadith. The kind of Muslim discourses discussed in classical Islam section includes the following: the meta-physical, natural and human dimensions of nature. The human aspect includes human relationships with nature such as vicegerency, subjection and inhabitation. Also the classical Islam section discusses the medieval discourses including Sufism ideas on the environment. Finally of the chapter considers the causes of and solutions for global environmental problems from an Islamic perspective."

13th March 2013 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Art Gallery

'A Noble Invention:Ruskin's Daguereotypes of Venice and Verona'

The 125 daguerreotype plates in the Whitehouse Collection (now in the Ruskin Library, under the care of the Ruskin Foundation) form one of the most important surviving groups of early photographs in the world. Following exhibitions of those covering Tuscany (2010), Northern France (2011) and Switzerland (2012), this last display focuses on the 28 plates of Venetian subjects and 16 of Verona.

Made between 1845 and 1852, most are of St. Mark’s basilica, with three details of the Ducal Palace in Venice and one of the Palazzo Bernardo a Polo, near the Rialto. The Verona subjects include the Cathedral and the churches of San Zeno and Santa Anastasia, as well as the remarkable medieval Scaliger Tombs.

Drawings by Ruskin, contemporary engravings published by him, and manuscript material relating to The Stones of Venice accompany this rich display."

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the roundabout on campus) in the run up to 1pm.

20th March 2013 - Dr Sam Riches, Centre for North West Regional Studies

'There Is No Spring Without Saint George'

This is a joint lecture with Lancaster and Morecambe U3A - The venue for this event is still to be confirmed.

You may remember Sam from previous Lunctime Lectures she has given based around myth and legend in this part of the world. Sam has lectured on dragons and the role they have held in the European psyche. In this lecture she will explore the history of Saint George and his relevance in our culture.


10th October 2012- Dr Hilary Walklett- 'The Russian Revolution'

'Russia’s history has always been turbulent: since the 1860s, there had been many rebellions, put down by the Tsar by a mixture of coercion and cajolery. So what was different about 1917? This short talk examines the complex field of Russian politics to see why the February and the October revolutions were successful.'

Those of you who have attended Lancaster University community lectures in the past will be familiar with Hilary's work. You may have attended one of his extremely popular Storey Institute talks organised by Lancaster University Department of Continuing Education (our original department) around 10 years ago. Hilary gave a number of public lectures on historical themes to packed audiences in Lancaster city centre. We are very pleased to welcome Hilary back to talk to us in our present incarnation.

This Lunchtime Lecture sets the scene for our term theme, which this term is 'Russia'.


17th October 2012 -Jan Maskell - 'Co-Housing Project'

Jan will discuss the exciting new housing development in Halton designed with ecological matters in mind.

'Cohousing is a housing development that balances the advantages of home ownership with the benefits of shared common facilities and connections with your neighbours. These co-operative neighbourhoods are designed to encourage both social contact and individual space, and are organised, planned and managed by the residents themselves.

Private homes contain all the features of conventional homes, but residents also have access to a common house with shared facilities such as a dining room, an area for childcare, workshops and laundry. Resident cooked dinners are often available in the common house for those who wish to participate.'

24th October 2012 - Dukes Theatre Visit - @ 2pm - 'An Instinct For Kindness'

Written and performed by Chris Larner
Directed by Hannah Eidinow

This week, in place of the usual Lunchtime Lecture and Research Circle, there will be a theatre visit.

We ask those who wish to attend this performance to arrange their own tickets and to meet in the foyer of the Dukes Theatre in Lancaster at 1.45pm.

Dukes Website:

Dukes Phone Number: (01524) 598500

"In November 2010, Chris Larner accompanied his chronically ill ex-wife to Dignitas in Switzerland. He returned home with an empty wheelchair and a story to tell.

This extraordinary solo performance has been acclaimed by press and public alike. With the contentious issue of assisted suicide currently being debated in parliament, this is an urgently relevant piece of theatre.

The production premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe 2011, where it won the Scotsman Fringe First award and has played a West End run in 2012.

Powerfully moving and gripping, Larner’s show is by turns funny and heart-rending. His brilliant script and performance draw us inexorably into the haunting, human story of a woman making the ultimate decision about her own life. "


31st October 2012 - Alison Findlay, Professor of Renaissance Drama, Director of the Shakespeare Programme at Lancaster University - 'Desecrated Ceremonies in Macbeth'

‘When shall we three meet again?’ asks the first of the weird sisters, inaugurating a series of perverted ceremonies that lead to tragedy on personal, national and cosmic levels in Macbeth. This illustrated talk will consider the connections between different types of ceremony and their emotional effects in the play. We will look at how ‘everyday’ ceremonies of politeness like greetings, partings, eating and drinking are corrupted, leading to the violation of rituals surrounding kingship and government in the play, in Shakespeare’s Britain and in post-Reformation Europe. The desecration of royal ceremony, religious rites, and rituals of personal interaction ultimately violates the natural and supernatural order with deeply disturbing effects for individuals and communities. The talk will ask whether the performance of ceremonies in Shakespearean drama can provide an emotional hotwire connecting the feelings of actors and audiences 400 years ago and now.


7th November 2012 - Dr Anna Tarrant- 'Who is the modern day grandfather? Identities, Meanings and Caring Relationships'

Please Note: This lecture, which is run in conjunction with Lancaster U3A, will take place at the Friends Meeting House (next to the railway station in Lancaster town centre) at 2pm.

' The following statement may be unsurprising to men who are grandfathers, but men do actually care for their grandchildren! Academic research is very interested in care work in families and how this is gendered. Typically men are associated with work life, productivity and bringing in a wage, highly valued activities in society. Women continue to be associated with (often less valued, unpaid) caring, nurturing and childcare roles even if they are employed as well. But what happens in grandparenthood? Do these gender roles change when people retire and have grandchildren? This presentation will explore what older men who are grandfathers do with their grandchildren, the extent to which they value their relationships and what this means to them. I will show that this creates lots of distinctive grandfather identities that in different ways challenge and support traditional gender roles in families.'

Members of the CLG may recall Anna from a Lecture she gave us a while back when she was embarking on her PhD into the role of the Grandfather in society. Well Anna completed her PhD and now returns to give us a comprehensive lecture on the discoveries she made along the way.

We also look forward to this chance to continue our educational partnership with Lancaster & Morecambe U3A.

14th November 2012 *Please note last minute change to lecture timetable*

'Digital Lecture' - Lancaster University Fylde Lecture Theatre 3

'Empire: Putin's Russia'

For our Digital Lecture this term we will be viewing the Al Jazeera programme on issues faced by contemporary Russia.
As Vladimir Putin begins his third term as Russian president, we ask: can Russia become a superpower once again?

This Lunchtime Lecture is the third on our theme, which this term is 'Russia'.

21st November 2012 - Visit to Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Gallery, 1pm.

'Ruskin And The Sacred'

We have timetabled a visit to the Lancaster University Ruskin Library and Gallery on campus to view the current exhibition ‘Ruskin And The Sacred’.

‘The Ruskin Library's exhibition Ruskin and the Sacred explores a variety of ways in which the sacred plays a part in John Ruskin's life and work. The exhibition brings together work by Ruskin, including examples of his drawings and studies, letters and books from his library, alongside the work of friends and family and paintings that he commissioned. It demonstrates Ruskin's approach to both art and nature and looks to his wider social concerns, with his belief that “there is no Wealth but Life”.

The expression of the sacred is considered with examples of religious subjects in art, and with landscape pictures and mountain studies. The display includes detailed drawings of churches and cathedrals, studies of sacred sculpture and the work of Angelo Alessandri, Raffaele Carloforti and Charles Fairfax Murray. Also included are Ruskin’s notable life-size copy of Zipporah, after Botticelli , the Study of the central portion of Tintoretto’s ‘Crucifixion’ and the North West Porch of St. Mark’s, Venice.’

Those of you who have attended in the past will know that we try to take in all of the exhibitions at the Ruskin as they are generally excellent. This one, a departure from the architecture and flora of recent exhibitions, promises to delight us all with its great beauty.

We will meet at the Ruskin Library (the attractive oval building on the roundabout) in the run up to 1pm. After viewing the exhibition a number of us have a meeting regarding some forthcoming research work but other group members may want to adjourn to café for refreshments and a chance to discuss the artwork.

28th November 2012 - David McWillams, PhD Student, Lancaster University

'Vampires and Vampire Hunters in Gothic Literature'

David is a Ph.D student here at Lancaster University under the supervision of Catherine Spooner and Lee Horsley. His thesis looks at representations of folk devils in contemporary American culture and how they interrogate discourses of monstrosity about extreme criminal deviance. David is a critic of contemporary genre fiction whose reviews have appeared in Vector, Foundation, the Interzone website, and Strange Horizons. He has also written articles on politics and culture for the Manchester Evening News and Lancashire Evening Post newspapers, as well as a number of articles for 'The Gothic Imagination' an interdisciplinary forum for lively discussion and critical debate concerning all manifestations of the Gothic mode.

David recommends viewing some related material from Channel 4 which can be found via this link:


5th December 2012- Dr Christine Milligan, Lancaster University Dept of Health and Medicine- 'Men and Sheds'

Christine is the head of the department on campus which we in the CLG call 'home'. She is a great supporter of our pragramme and the work we do. She is also Associate Dean for Postgraduate Studies.

Christine Milligan's research interests are focused around: the voluntary sector, activism and social welfare; aging and older people and informal care-giving; mental well-being and therapeutic landscapes. She also has an interest in ethics in social research and is currently PI on an ESRC RTI on Ethics in Social Research.

In this Lunchtime Lecture Christine will explore the concept of the shed and its relevance to men.


12th December 2012 - End of Term - See You in 2013!


Previous Lectures...

Academic Year 2011/2012

25th April 2012 - Fiona Frank

'Being Jewish in Scotland'

Our friend and founder, Fiona, returns to bring us up-to-date on developments in her current work as Project Worker with SCoJeC, the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities. Fiona is working on a Scottish Government funded inquiry called 'Being Jewish in Scotland' - a very fitting continuation to her PhD, which was about intergenerational transmission of Scottish Jewish identity (and which she spoke about at one of our lunchtime lectures last year).

Most of the data collection is complete (though Fiona is off to Inverness the Sunday before the lecture and Dunoon the Sunday after the lecture, where she’s organising celebrations of Jewish culture and running focus groups with local Jewish people). Survey responses have been received from around 130 people and focus groups have been held with another 150 Jewish people from all over Scotland - from the larger Jewish communities in the central belt, in the smaller communities in Aberdeen and Dundee, and in rural areas many miles from the nearest Jewish community. Fiona will talk about the early findings of the inquiry, what led the Scottish Government to fund the project, and what the next steps might be.

We look forward to a vibrant lecture from Fiona to open our new term, which will give us an understanding of the issues affecting Jewish people living across Scotland and will draw some links to the situation of members of the tiny Jewish community of Lancaster.

2nd May 2012 - Roger Clough, Emeritus Professor of Social Care.

'Getting To Grips With Getting Greyer: perspectives on how we want to live as we move into old age and contemplate the end of life.'

"Roger Clough is Emiritus Professor of Social Care at Lancaster University, having moved there in January 1994 from the post of Chief Inspector of Social Services with Cumbria Social Services. He started work as a teacher/housemaster in senior boys' approved schools. From there he moved to residential work and social work teaching. At Bristol Polytechnic he was tutor in charge of one of the new courses for senior residential staff working with adults following the recommendations of the Williams Committee. At Bristol University he tutored and lectured on the generic CQSW and DipSW courses which trained residential workers and social workers on a common programme. He was also a tutor on Bristol's postqualifying courses for residential child care staff, which later developed into a specialist post qualifying training for residential workers with all age groups.

He was a county councillor for 8 years, including being Chair of the Social Services Committee, Vice-Chair of the Finance Committee and party spokesperson on the Police Authority. He says that he thinks he is one of the few people who mourns the passing of the county of Avon!
His major current interests is into policy and practice for the provision of housing and care for older people: 'What are the various alternatives available to older people when they are no longer able to stay in their own homes: residential care, nursing homes, specialist housing with very good care services?' His thesis is that housing provides a better model as people whether as tenants or owners have a different relationship with the accommodation than when they are residents; they also get far more housing space.

He is mounting a campaign to get a policy review which crosses housing and residential/nursing care, and crosses local authority/voluntary private providers and includes national charities.

The campaign will include research of different types: ESRC CASE funding for individual students; a research programme in different parts, sponsored directly by private/voluntary bodies. The aim of the research will be to examine the characteristics of the people who live in different types of accommodation and care. From this, to develop some action research which will study whether people of similar characteristics to those in nursing homes and residential care homes can live well in specialist housing plus care.

He has written about residential work with older people and young people. He is a member of The Residential Forum , the newly established body to take on the work of Wagner, Warner and Utting and has been on the Residential Forum working parties which have produced their first document Creating a Home from Home and their soon to be published review of training for residential staff subtitled, The Forgotten Service He is a member also of CCETSW's England Committee ."

Steering Group members recently heard Roger present his ideas as a guest at a C4AR event where we also gave a presentation regarding our work as organisers and planners of the GLG. Roger's Lunchtime Lecture will focus on planning and the ageing process.

9th May 2012 - Professor John Burgoyne, Lancaster University Management School.

'History of Management, Leadership and Organisation in the North West'

John’ professional roles include: Associate Editor, British Journal of Management Editorial Board, Journal of Health Service Management Member, British Academy of Management: Research Policy Working Party. He is also Professor of Management Learning at Henley Management College.

John’s research interests include: The learning organisation; Corporate management development; The nature of management, knowledge and competence; Theories of learning and teaching; Training and development methods.

John is currently involved in a range of research projects including: Corporate management development - what do and should work organisations do about management development, how should this be embodied in roles and practices? Theory and practice of learning.

We have had a couple of topical and thought-provoking lectures from John in the past. The most recent dealing with the role of inappropriate management focus as a contributing factor in the current financial crisis. In this week's Lunchtime Lecture John will look at the history of management in the North West.

16th May 2012 - Dr Eleanor Rycroft, Lecturer in Early Modern Literature.

Lecture around the theme of 'Witches'

"Following a DPhil in pogonophilia in the work of Shakespeare and his contemporaries (currently being revised for publication), I was appointed as the Postdoctoral Research Assistant on the AHRC funded ‘Staging the Henrician Court’ project run by Oxford Brookes and Edinburgh Universities. The project staged John Heywood’s The Play of the Weather in the Great Hall of Hampton Court Palace in order to investigate the organisation and policing of space through drama at the court of Henry VIII. I played a key role in coordinating the scholars, curators and theatre professionals involved in the project and organised a related symposium on the ‘Early Tudor Theatre’ at Hampton Court in 2010, bringing together international scholars to discuss issues of space, audience, and modes of performance at the Henrician Court. During the course of the project I have produced work on gender and performance, the figure of the Vice and audience/actor relations in the early English drama: all of which demonstrate my interest in the practice and performance of early modern theatre.

Since September 2011 I have been Lecturer in Early Modern Literature at Lancaster University, teaching on the Shakespeare and Renaissance to Restoration modules, and supervising undergraduate dissertations.

My work is interdisciplinary and draws on a wide range of printed sources, historical records and objects in order to present fresh ways of thinking about Renaissance literature and identity. My other main research interest concerns the gendered subjectivities of the Renaissance and especially how manhood and boyhood were constructed during the period. I have recently submitted work on ‘Masculinity and Morality in Youth and Hick Scorner’ for The Oxford Handbook to Tudor Drama (eds. Tom Betteridge and Greg Walker), ‘Gender and Status in The Play of the Weather’ for Henry VIII and the Tudor Court (eds. Tom Betteridge and Suzannah Lispcomb) and a report on the Hampton Court performance for the journal Medieval English Theatre. My work on John Rastell has been accepted for publication for the Blackwell Encyclopedia of English Renaissance Literature (eds. Garrett Sullivan and Alan Stewart) and I am currently writing an article for Literature Compass (ed. Claire Jowitt) on ‘Facial Hair and the Fashioning of Early Modern Manhood’ in the travel literature of the English Renaissance.

I have extensive teaching experience in Renaissance literature, drama and critical theory. "

23rd May 2012 - Ruskin Library Exhibition with Professor Stephen Wildman.

'100 Years of the Library Edition of the Complete Works of Ruskin'

We will be given a guided tour around the current exhibition commemorating the centenary of this mammoth 39 volume work at the Lancaster University Ruskin Centre by the Director and Curator, Professor Stephen Wildman.

Lancaster University is home to a rather wonderful centre for research into the life and work of artist, John Ruskin. We have had a number of visits to view the ever-changing exhibitions organised to present the large body of Ruskin's work, which is housed in the vaults of the building. These visits provide a chance for our group members to get a good grounding in the artworks and thoughts of this wonderful artist/ thinker.

'Stephen Wildman took up his appointment at Lancaster University in November 1996. A graduate of Queens' College, Cambridge, where he was Research Fellow and Director of Studies in History of Art from 1976 to 1979, he became Deputy Keeper of Fine Art at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery in 1980, and remained Curator of Prints and Drawings until October 1996. In 1991 he was appointed Professor of History of Art to the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists. Between 1982 and 1992 he served successively as Secretary and Chairman of the Victorian Society (Birmingham Group). An Honorary Research Fellow at Birmingham University (School of History, Department of Fine Arts and Art History) from 1991 to 1994, he was a Visiting Fellow at Yale University, New Haven (Yale Center for British Art) in 1994, and has been on the Consultative Committee of The Walpole Society since 1999.

Stephen is Director and Curator of the Ruskin Library on the University campus, and is responsible for works from the Whitehouse Collection displayed at Brantwood. He is also an Honorary Research Fellow, Department of Art (Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences), a course tutor for the M.A. in Ruskin Studies (and member of the Management Committee, Ruskin Centre) and a member of the Academic Advisory Committee of the Centre for North-West Regional Studies. In May 2008 he was awarded a Personal Chair in the History of Art, and in August 2008 was appointed Director of the Ruskin Library and Research Centre."

We would like to thank Stephen for his enthusiasm and support in introducing us to the excellent exhibitions of the Ruskin Centre and the stunning collection of works held at Lancaster University.

30th May 2012 -Rose Chard, PhD Student at Lancaster University.

'Older People and Fuel Poverty'

Please Note: This lecture, which is run in conjunction with Lancaster U3A, will take place at the Friends Meeting House (next to the railway station in Lancaster town centre) at 2pm.

Rose completed her BSc (Hons) in Geography here at Lancaster University. She then completed her MSc (Hons) in Environmental Sustainability, Fuel poverty, Energy, Sustainability, Community at the University of Edinburgh before returning to Lancaster where she is currently involved in her PhD dealing with 'The implementation of recent fuel poverty interventions and their capacity to improve access to energy services for vulnerable older people'.

We are very happy to welcome Rose to speak to ourselves and members of U3A on this topical subject of older people and fuel poverty.

6th June 2012 - Dr Anna Tarrant, Managing Editor of

You may recall Anna from a while back when she was working on her PhD which was, amongst other things, looking into Grandfathering and family relationships. Well Anna has completed her studies and is currently working as the Managing Editor of PhD2Published, a website which provides academic publishing advice. She returns to talk to us about the results of her PhD research.

We are thrilled to have Anna back with us and look forward to hearing the results of her fascinating study.

You can take a look at Anna's advice website by clicking the link below:

13th June 2012 – Janet Ross-Mills, Lancaster University CLG Member.

‘John Ross - Lost Amongst the Icebergs’

Please Note: As part of our aim to bring the work of Lancaster University into the community, this lecture will take place in The Meeting Room, Lancaster City Library, Market Square, Lancaster and will start at 2PM.

Our very own Janet Ross Mills, Senior Student and member of the CLG Steering Groupkm will present a Special Lunchtime Lecture in Lancaster Library on the research project she has been engaged in as her personal study project during her time with the CLG.

Soon to be published online in eBook format and including a new original artwork by Dumfries and Galloway artist Val Macadam, Janet’s book focuses on the fascinating story of her distant relative, the Scottish explorer John Ross.

John Ross, along with his nephew James Clarke Ross, survived four long years lost in the frozen Arctic whilst searching for the North-West Passage. During this time Ross learned how to adapt to the deadly harsh conditions endured by the native peoples. His time in the Arctic included an epic journey on foot which lasted around 16 months. His return to his homeland was marked with great celebrations and a hero’s welcome by those who had resigned themselves to the idea that he and his entire crew had perished in the frozen wastelands.

The lecture will be followed by a discussion on the issues raised, and you are invited to ask questions relating to Janet's research and online publishing plans.

20th June 2012 - 'Digital Lecture' - Lancaster University Fylde Lecture Theatre 3

'Mickey B' Directed by Tom Magill

As our Digital Lecture this term we will be viewing the 2007 adaptation of Shakespeare's 'Macbeth'.

Johnny McDevitt of the Guardian describes it as...

"Not classic Shakespeare, for sure. This is Mickey B, the Educational Shakespeare Company's adaptation of the jet-black tragedy Macbeth, shot in HMP Maghaberry in Northern Ireland. Twenty-four of the 25-strong cast are still behind bars - and probably will be for a long time. In this version of Macbeth, usurpations are carried out with shanks, paid for with packs of Golden Virginia tobacco and the poison of choice is LSD, not hemlock...

...There was a frisson of disgruntlement in the Northern Irish press about the close-to-the-bone nature of the project, some of which centred around the decision to film one of the more macabre of Shakespeare plays. But Mickey B director Tom Magill (who is also ESC's artistic director) believes the logic behind producing a film based on Macbeth - the tension of which resonated strongly with the detainees, many of whom experienced brutality on the streets of Belfast - is that it helps on the long road to rehabilitation. "Look at it like this," he says. "We're dealing with non-conformed prisoners, with people from both sides of the sectarian divide, loyalist and republicans. There are people here with no qualifications whatsoever. Here, they can be awarded with educational active citizenship awards."

The film will run for approximately 1 hour and will then be followed by a discussion.

27th June 2012 - Ruth Passman, Senior Health Policy Adviser, Department of Health.

'Health and Wellbeing'

"Ruth Passman is a Senior Policy Advisor for the North West Public Health Team. Her portfolio includes the development and implementation of regional health strategy and the support and co-ordination of health input to regional partnerships. Holding a regional lead on Sustainable Development across NW NHS and DH NW, Ruth has a strong involvement in regional policy formulation and implementation, most latterly in spearheading the North West Regional response to developing and implementing an ambitious Carbon Reduction Action Plan, working closely with Health Trusts, SD Champions, voluntary sector groups and professional specialists.

Holding the Local Area Agreement health and social care portfolio lead for the North West, Ruth has been closely involved in the strategic coordination of the development and implementation of the region’s Local Area Agreements and their health and social care reward targets and endeavours to make the health links across this agenda on carbon emissions, fuel poverty, physical activity and other related targetry areas.

Ruth has had a diverse career working in the voluntary sector, health and academia where she taught social policy, cultural studies and sociology. In the field of health and regeneration, Ruth has acted at Director and Chief Executive level, establishing and leading organisations and renewal programmes."

Summer Term Ends

18th January 2012 - Brian Hodgson, Doctoral Student of the Lancaster Ruskin Centre,

'From Trees To Furniture'

Brian Hodgson has spent much of his life as a Master Craftsman working with wood until embarking on his Doctoral studies at Lancaster's Ruskin Centre. Following on from his lecture on Furness Abbey, Brian returns to talk to us about the processes involved in furniture production. Brian will give us insights into the process and touch on how this process has changed over the generations from the Gothic period up until the present day.



25th January 2012 - Ricardo Lima, Doctoral Student of Lancaster Environment Centre.

'The Effects of Land-Use Changes on the Biodiversity of São Tomé'

Ricardo's talk will be about the effects of land-use changes on the biodiversity of São Tomé, an equatorial island located off the West coast of Africa. This tiny island holds remarkable numbers of endemics, biological varieties that occur nowhere else. Ricardo's research has focused on understanding how bird and tree communities, and specifically the endemic species, change along a gradient of land-use intensification, in order to find ways to protect the island's unique natural heritage.


1st February 2012 - Ali Birkett, Doctoral Student of Lancaster Environment Centre.

'Dung Beetles and Ecosystem Function in UK Uplands'


Ali's PhD project will assess whether future climate and land-use changes could alter dung beetle communities to the detriment of ecosystem function provision in British moorlands. This involves field surveys, distribution modelling and manipulative experiments. It has already included the first known survey of the dung beetle community of the Peak District National Park. The end result will improve understanding of the effects of global change on biodiversity and the functions that biodiversity provides.



8th February 2012 - Dr Sam Brown, Lancaster Environment Centre,

'Older People and Climate Change'

Sam’s research interests lie in understanding how people can begin to adapt to the needs of a changing climate, and the ways in which everyday practice might be reconfigured as part of a more sustainable and lower carbon future.

In particular his work focuses on issues related to the challenges of producing and sustaining comfortable and safe indoor climates in a warmer and more sustainable world. His PhD asked how and why older people living in care homes are vulnerable to the effects of heatwaves. Using an ethnographic approach their vulnerability was linked to the material infrastructure of the home itself and the way power relationships in the home shape the use of space and time.

15th February 2012 - Dr Liz Oakley-Brown, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences,

'Loves Labour's Lost and Forthcoming Conference/Performance'

Please Note: This lecture, which is run in conjunction with Lancaster U3A, will take place at the Friends Meeting House (next to the railway station in Lancaster town centre) at 2pm.

You may remember Dr Liz Oakley-Brown from her recent lecture on aspects of translation in Shakespeare and the construction of national identities. Liz is lecturer in Shakespeare and Renaissance Writing in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Lancaster University. In this lecture Liz will concentrate on 'Loves Labour's Lost'.

This lecture provides the perfect lead-in to the forthcoming 5th Biennial British Shakespeare Association conference which will take place here at Lancaster University on 24th-26th February 2012.

More details about this conference can be found here:

And the Dukes Theatre of Lancaster will be performing ' Loves Labour's Lost' from 21st to 25th of February. Full details of these performances can be found here:

Lancaster Castle will host a performance of 'Much Ado About Nothing' from Feb 28th through to March 24th. Full details of these performances can be found here:

22nd February 2012 - Digital Lecture - Dr Kathleen Richardson, UCL Anthropology.

'Will Robots Take Over The World?'

We continue our occasional on-screen series with a lecture from the UCL archive...

"[Last year was] the 90th anniversary of the robot, first imagined as a character in a play, performed in Prague in 1921. It [was] also the 50th anniversary of the first use of robots in industry with the robot ‘Unimate’ for General Motors in 1961.

Since the origin of robots they have undergone a number of transitions from the popular idea of the robot as a domestic, a vision popular from fiction such as the 1970's cartoon ‘The Jetsons’, to the last fifteen years imagining robots, not just for work, but to act as companions, exercise coaches for the elderly or stroke patients, and assistants for children with autism spectrum conditions.

This lecture will explore the history of the robot, and how it has changed and been re-imagined in fiction and labs over the last 91 years."

The lecture will be followed by an informal discussion.



29th February 2012 - John Burgoyne, Lancaster University Management School.

'The Villainy of Leadership and a Route to Salvation'

"I will argue that leadership, as fashionably constituted over the last decade or more, is to a significant degree responsible for the credit crunch, recession and related crisis.

This is because it has concentrated on mission, vision, empowerment, transformation and all those good things while losing sight of reality, or even the possibility of its existence, and certainly the analytics, for example, of the content of those sub-prime mortgages (though I am assured that the relevant banks were full of people who knew exactly what was in them, but they were ignored).
So it is time for leadership that is scientific and lean, that recognises that it follows as well as leads.

I am also going to argue that the scientific blind spot of leadership has contributed to the green, ecological crisis, a phenomenon to which Business Schools have at least been complicit in.

Corporations and organisations as we know, manage and lead them are systems with elements from the whole spectrum from the physical through the zoological, biological, psychological, sociological and anthropological (and possibly spiritual too, to be discussed later). It is the zoological and biological that are largely missing from the disciplines that the business school curriculum and research agenda calls upon."

7th March 2012 - Brian Hodgson, Doctoral Student of the Lancaster Ruskin Centre

'Creativity and Craftsmanship: An Exploration of Definitions and Stages'

Brian, regular lecturer for the CLG and also group member, is a Master Craftsman of The Worshipful Company of Carpenters, and The Worshipful Company of Joiners and Ceilers, The Carpenters Company and the City and Guilds. He is also a Licentiate of the City and Guild Institute and Fellow of the Institute of Carpenters. He has had responsibility for teaching, training and assessment and holds the Royal Society of Arts Training and Assessment Award. He has lectured in Colleges for 14 years as well as put these criteria to work in craft projects in the wider world.

In this Lecture the stages of developing creativity will be explored as will the various criteria he has set out for assessing the degrees of craftsmanship and creativity. These criteria are applicable to any skilled crafts work and to interpretative performances in the Arts and in some sport.


14th March 2012 - Mark Rotherham, Film Maker, Transition City, Lancaster.

Film - 'TCL Unleashed'

Mark presents his comprehensive film focusing on the possibilities for Lancaster as a Transition City.

"The film starts with a moving vision of Lancaster in 2030. It then builds on Rob Hopkins presentation on Peak Oil, Climate change and Transition with an inspiring and creative flare that compliments Rob's sincere and heartfelt journey through the challenges ahead.

The film skillfully illuminates the issues with clever and amusing use of animation sequences and some wonderful footage of Lancaster old, new and yet to come."

This is a truly inspiring piece of work which shows us all why it is urgent and important that we come together to act to build a resilient Lancaster for all our futures. The film will, I'm sure, prompt a vibrant 'question and answer' session with Mark.


21st March 2012 - Bilqees Abdeiga,

'Towards the development of a new tool for assessing biodegradation potential of organic contaminants in crude-oil contaminated sites'

"Petroleum hydrocarbons are group of ubiquitous and environmentally persistent organic compounds (HOCs) found in crude oil refineries, transformer plant stations and former gas plants. They are potent carcinogens and mutagens; therefore they have been classified as priority pollutants whose clean-up is a matter of global concern.

In recent years there have been increased scientific interests to develop a technique for measuring biodegradation potential of HOC and by inference the success of bioremediation as a clean-up strategy for most persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in soils. Proposed methodologies range from organic solvent extractions to non-exhaustive, aqueous based extractions. So far these have demonstrated mixed successes with limitations mainly imposed by the nature of contaminants or soil organic matter or a combination of both.

I am proposing a new methodology based on desorption of compounds from soil to interstitial spaces where biodegradation occurs."



More Lunchtime Lectures will be added as they are confirmed.

Next term we have...

Rose Chard - 30th May-Older people and fuel poverty
Ruth Passmore- 27th June- Well being/health issues
Roger Clough -TBA
Anna Tarrant -TBA

More details to come

Below is a selection of previous Lunchtime Lectures.

These are now available as audio recordings in our 'Recordings of Lectures' archive on page (E) of this website.

12th October 2011 - Welcome Day!

We start our new term with a day of finding our feet....

Amongst other things, Jenny Brine will be along to talk to us about the University Library, its collections, knowledgeable specialist librarians, exhibition space, and many more things which members of the Continuing Learning Group are able to make use of.

The Lunchtime Lecture series will be outlined including our special ‘Digital Lecture’ which we introduced last year and the exciting possibility of a forthcoming, once-a-term lecture merge with U3A.

We will have a chance to discuss the Research Circle, what format it will take, as well as exploring what it can offer each of us in terms of our learning over the coming months.

The Open Lectures (where Senior Students are able to attend undergraduate lectures) will be discussed including the protocols for CLG members when attending these lectures.

There will also be a demonstration of the Senior-Learners-Forum (website) and a short discussion of the Senior Learner Society (Student Union Society) and the type of events which we have attended in the past, and hope to attend in the future.

All students will get the chance to get to know each other and meet the volunteer Steering Group members who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.



19th October 2011 - Brian Hodgson, Doctoral Student of the Ruskin Centre

"An Exploration Of Furness Abbey".

We are very pleased to welcome Brian back this term to talk to us about the glorious Furness Abbey.

Brian will look at the social and economic as well as the ecological impact of the Cistercian monastery of St Mary's of Furness. He will explore how the wilderness was tamed and became the Furness Plain and how, after the dissolution of the monastery under Henry VIII, the economic and social life of the area was changed together with the farming practice and the susequent effect on the environment.

On the following Saturday (22nd Oct)CLG students, and others with an interest in history are invited to join Brian at the Abbey where we will be able to look at the picturesque ruins in situ and relate it to various theories on how the site was laid out. The area around the monastery on the Furness peninsula is rich in romantic history and the fight for religious freedom.

Students are invited to bring cameras to capture some of the fantastic views available.

Full details for this event will be covered at the Lunchtime Lecture and then posted here when finalised.



26th October 2011 -Digital Lecture - Professor Dame Linda Partridge

(UCL Genetics, Evolution and Environment)

"The New Biology of Ageing"

Research into ageing has been rejuvenated by the discovery that genetic alterations extend the lifespan of laboratory animals. These mutations keep animals healthy for longer and protect them from many of the diseases of ageing.

Professor Partridge will look at how this and other discoveries have led to a new wave of research directed at understanding how these changes can increase healthy lifespan in humans. The lecture will then be followed by a group discussion on the subject, where everyone will be able to share ideas.


2nd November 2011 - Susan Balderston (Lancaster University, Visionsense UK, Breakthrough UK),

"The Current Situation Regarding Disablist Hate Crime In The UK"

Susie is Policy and Training Director for VisionSense, a user-led organisation of disabled people in Jarrow. She is part of the Breakthrough UK Policy Development Think Tank, dealing with disabling inequalities at the start and end of life, and is currently studying for her PhD here at Lancaster University, exploring collective interventions with disabled women after hate crime and rape. Susie will talk to us about disablist hate crime in the UK, with particular focus on recent changes and events.


9th November 2011 - Becky Messham (PhD student, University of Hull)

"Doing Business Underwater: Flooding, Entrepreneurship and Resilience"

In Hull and Sheffield Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) play a critical role and benefit the economy, communities and individuals. However, despite the fundamental role they play, SMES within the two cities are vulnerable to a catalogue of physical and business risks, which if not addressed could impact upon their welfare. Flooding is just one in a ‘package of risks’ faced by these SMEs, yet research has found that the risk of flooding is not only increasing exponentially but also changing in nature. Accordingly businesses within Hull and Sheffield are at risk to this increase and change in flooding. Nevertheless, despite the economic and social importance of SMEs and the increasing risk of flooding these two concepts remain uncoupled. Consequently my research is using qualitative and quantitative methods to uncover the effects of floods upon SMEs, examine what ‘kind of risk’ floods pose to organisations and how significant this risk is (compared to other risks businesses face). In doing so, it is hoped that this research will help SME owner/managers to become more aware of the changing flood risks, their associated vulnerabilities and assist them in discovering the steps necessary to increase their resilience to flooding in the future.

16th November 2011 - Joint Session with Lancaster and Morecembe U3A.

Professor Robin Tucker of the Department of Physics at Lancaster University.

Robin's lecture is entitled 'Gravity'.

Please note the venue for this lecture:

This Lecture will take place the Friends Meeting House on Meeting House

Lane in Lancaster at 2pm. All are welcome.



23rd November 2011 - Guided tour of the current Ruskin exhibition,

Ruskin Library and Research Centre, Lancaster University.

The exhibition is entitled 'Ruskins Flora'.

The guided tour of the exhibition will be given by Stephen Wildman.

Stephen is Director and Curator of the Ruskin Library.

The guided tour will start at 1pm and we ask all those students interested

to meet at the Ruskin Library rather than the usual lecture theatre.

Included in the exhibition are:

MODERN PAINTERS: drawings and paintings used to illustrate Modern Painters
(1843-1860), Ruskin's great work on art, together with additional
tree studies.

FLORA OF CHAMOUNI: drawings and paintings of Alpine plants, together with
pressed plants collected near Chamonix and associated notes and other

PROSERPINA: drawings and paintings used to illustrate Proserpina
(1875-1886), Ruskin's fascinating but controversial botanical work,
together with additional studies of flowers and leaves.

FLORA OF CUMBRIA: an introduction to the modern botanical work, A Flora of
Cumbria, by Geoffrey Halliday, published by Lancaster University (1997),
together with material from the Lancaster University Herbarium and
illustrations of Cumbrian plants by John Ruskin.

INSPIRED BY RUSKIN AND THE PLANT WORLD: contemporary artwork inspired by
Ruskin's drawings and paintings and the plant world.

Some of our students will be familiar with Stephen from the
wonderful Ruskin related Lunchtime Lectures he has given us in the past.
We are very excited to be able to experience some of Ruskin's lesser known
botanical works in this exhibition and very pleased to have Stephen offer
to guide us through it.



30th November 2011 - CLG meeting cancelled due to national strike action.

Due to the extensive strike action planned, it has been decided by the Steering Group to postpone
our weekly meet till next Wednesday (7th Dec). We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
There will be a staff picket line at Lancaster University for those who wish to show support,
and a rally and events will be taking place in Market Square in Lancaster from 11am onwards.


7th December 2011 - (Moved from last week) George Savona (Lancaster University)

"The origin and social functions of Greek drama and theatre"

European drama and theatre find their origins in the civic festivals of Athens in the Classical period. The tragic dramas of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides, and the surreal comedies of Aristophanes, reflected the city back to itself. Drawing for narratives on both well-known mythic cycles such as the tale of Troy, and recent historical events such as the Battle of Marathon, the dramatists made their plays from an engagement with the moral, philosophical, political and spiritual preoccupations of the age. For the citizen audience, a visit to the theatre offered participation in a continuing learning event, commissioned by themselves; in religious observance and political debate; and in a daylong set of performances that combined elements of theatre, opera and dance.


George is a favourite with the group due to his wonderfully interesting lectures. He began his life as a theatre director and continues to research and publish in the fields of drama and film studies. His focus is on semiotics in the field of Theatre. He has taught and practised as a director in Australia, France and Greece. George returns with another of his fascinating lectures on an aspects of Greek drama.


14th December 2011 - Jill Robinson - Feedback from the Balearic Summer School

and End of Term Jacob's Join.

4th May 2011 - Brian Hodgson, Doctoral Student of the Ruskin Centre, "Doctoral Studies of Gothic Buildings".
In this lecture Brian discusses and demonstrates the beauty of Gothic architectural form and explains
how he made the move from Master Craftsman into his Doctoral studies at Lancaster's Ruskin Centre.

11th May 2011 - Fiona Frank, Doctoral Student at Strathclyde University and founder of the SLP education programme.
"Jewish Immigration to Scotland: Anatomy of a PhD"
Fiona Frank, who was made redundant when the Department of Continuing Education closed last July, has just returned from spending six months in Glasgow finishing the PhD that she had been working on part-time for the previous seven years. She is currently waiting for final corrections on her full draft, and hopes to graduate this Autumn. Her PhD is entitled: '"An Outsider Wherever I Am?" Five Generations of Scottish Jewish Identity' and is a study of an extended Scottish Jewish family, tracked through the whole of the twentieth century. She has used oral history life story interviews with the middle generations, examination of historical data like census documents, marriage certificates, school records and wills for the older generations, and, in a novel departure from the usual historical surveys, she has engaged with the younger generation using electronic focus group interviews on 'Facebook', the social networking site. She originally wanted to examine how Jewish identity was transmitted between generations, but as always with research projects, a closer look at her data found her answering some new questions that she didn't set out to ask. In this talk she will outline the story of the Hoppenstein dynasty, starting with Rabbi Zvi David Hoppenstein and his wife Sophia, who arrived in Edinburgh in 1882 and had nine children. She will also be discussing the process of turning a series of fascinating stories into a PhD (with nods to Bourdieu, class, gender, grounded theory, and social network analysis), and she will be fantasising about what she hopes to do once she actually becomes a Doctor of Philosophy.

18th May 2011 - Dr Sally Watson "leadership in a changing world/leading your own life"
Dr Sally Watson is Director of Executive Education. She gained her BSc at Manchester in 1972 and her PHd at Lancaster in 2002Sally has been involved in leadership training programmes for Airbus, BAE Systems, Hospices and Islamic organisations. She has recently been researching the Northern Ireland Peace Process.

Sally will be helping us to reflect on how we operate as leaders in a changing world.

25th May 2011 - John Schad -Professor of Modern Literature , Department of English and Creative Writing

John will discuss a fictional account of 3 actors who took part in a performance of “Waiting for Godot” in Blackpool in 1956.

1st June 2011 - Liz Fawcett, Senior Library Assistant and a member of the Library’s Special Collections team.
“The Jack Hylton Archive at Lancaster University Library”
Jack Hylton – band leader and impresario – was born in Bolton and spent a lot of time in Blackpool, and so it is very appropriate that his archive has stayed in North West England, at Lancaster University Library. The archive includes his sheet music, posters, scripts, letters and papers and is complemented by a lot of recorded music.

Liz has been working on the Jack Hylton Archive for many years. She brings to it not only her skills as a librarian but also her training in music. The illustrated talk will include examples of Jack Hylton’s music.

8th June 2011 - Hungarian Visitors - "Aspects of Hungarian Life"

As a follow-on to the SEVOCA exchange, where a number of older learners spent 3 weeks in Budapest helping out in the Cultural Centre, we are very pleased to announce that we will be hosting a small group of Hungarian older learners who will spend time getting to know our region. They will have a chance to explore cultural and historic sites and get a feel for Lancashire life. As part of their time here they will host a Lunchtime Lecture on apects of Hungarian life and culture.

15 June 2011 - Dr Greg Myers- Professor of Rhetoric and Communication - "Wikipedia"

Greg teaches several modules on the B.A. in English Language and the Media. He is interested in the social context of scientific and academic texts and has written about language in relation to Jerry Springer, Princess Diana, advertising and branding. He will focus on Wikepedia in his lecture to the CLG.

22 June 2011 - Dr Liz Oakley- Brown- "Have You The Tongues?: Translation Matters in Shakespearean Drama"

Dr Liz Oakley-Brown is lecturer in Shakespeare and Renaissance Writing in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Lancaster University. Today's talk comes out of her long-standing engagement with translation and the construction of national identities.

29 June 2011 - David Jackson,- Musician and Teacher - formerly Music Tutor at The Adult College, Lancaster: "Musical composition is for everyone...?"

Paul Hindemith thought of musical composition as an everyday activity we can all enjoy, not as the sole prerogative of specially trained, gifted or motivated people. After exploring some of our ideas about the nature of music and the concept of musical composition, we shall work individually, in pairs and all together, trying to ascertain whether Hindemith was right...or not!

Previous Lectures...

26th Jan 2011 - Dr Sam Riches, Mediaeval Historian, "Monsters and the Medieval Imagination"

2nd Feb 2011 - Dr Fiona Measham, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, " Legal Highs and the Government's Conundrum"

9th Feb 2011 - Digital Lecture (on screen), Tim Berners-Lee on Linked Data / Julian Assange on Wikileaks

16th Feb 2011 - Dr Daphne Wallace, Retired Consultant Psychiatrist, "Dementia, Personhood and Cognitive Decline"

23rd Feb 2011 - Prof David Milman, Professor of Law, "The Debt Issue"

2nd March 2011 - Dr Kamilla Elliot, Senior Lecturer in English Literature "Turning Books Into Films"

9th March 2011 - Dr Mike Roberts, Lecturer in the Lancaster Environment Centre (tbc). "Plant Diseases"

16th March 2011 - Prof John Burgoyne, Professor of Management Learning, "Leadership and Education"

23rd March 2011 - Prof RogerPickup, Professor of Biomedicine and Life Sciences, "Mountain Rescue"

<span style="background-color: #ffffff; color: #212121; font-size: 15px;">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. </span>