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Welcome to the Senior Learners Forum...The web home of the Lancaster University Continuing Learning Group (CLG)

All visitors are invited to enjoy the site, view the content and listen to the lectures. This is an open resource for those who like to learn. see Recordings of Lectures page.jpg

Using this website you can:

Lion-Facing-right-V2.gifAt the end of a week when we said goodbye to anti-apartheid activist, academic and feminist

AnnMarie Wolpe, Irish novelist and poet Val Mulkerns, TV gameshow presenter Jim Bowen and theoretical physicist, cosmologist, author and occasional special guest on some of the funkiest American syndicated TV shows Stephen Hawking, we look back over the last week with the CLG and look forward to the coming week.

Last week…

Last Wednesday the CLG paid a second visit to the Campus in the City Street Law sessions. The subject on this occasion being ‘The Importance of Making a Will’.

The session was led by an undergraduate in his first year of law studies, ably assisted by the one of the more experienced Campus in the City staff and Gary Rycroft, the solicitor with Joseph A. Jones & Co. who visited the CLG back in May 2017 to advise us on how we might disinherit our children.

In this short session we learned about the importance of having an adequate will in place, rather than leaving the arrangements to the state to sort out after our death. We learned that a hierarchy exists regarding legacy, and that it does not automatically respect our own particular family structure. Therefore, each person’s legacy intentions should be clearly set out in a will to avoid confusion. The group members were introduced to the pathways open to us when making a will, things to consider, as well as limitations in the breadth and depth covered by a will.

We were also informed about a free Law Clinic which operates on campus during term times. This clinic utilises law students, backed by qualified law practitioners, and aims to provide free advice to all. If you have any legal issues which you need to explore, it may be worth giving the Law Clinic a look. The Clinic is currently having a break, owing to the end of term, but will be available again in around four weeks’ time.

See here for further details:


This week…

This coming Wednesday (21st March 2018), due to the end of the UCU industrial action on campus for this present term, we will once again meet back on campus, for our final Lunchtime Lecture of the Lent term. However, we will be meeting in a different room for this session. Bowland North Seminar Room 8. This building runs alongside the Chaplaincy Centre and can be accessed through double doors to the left, in front of the Welcome Centre.

The Lecture will be given by Dr Amin Al-Astewani, lecturer in law with Lancaster University Law School, and is entitled '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.’

This lecture promises to be an interesting and controversial one. You may recall Dr Amin Al-Astewani visited us back in June 2017 to lecture on English Human Rights Law and the Use of Religious Symbols. His lecture proved so stimulating that we decided to invite him back to give the final CLG Lunchtime Lecture of this Lent term.

We hope you can make it along to Seminar Room 8 in Bowland North for the usual time of 1pm. There might even be some cake, you never know.

Other news…

We were contacted this week by Dr Jess Wang, Lecturer with the Department of Psychology here at Lancaster University. Her email says…

‘On Friday March 23rd, Lara Warmelink and myself will be showcasing our research at Campus in the City. We are both about to launch new research projects on ageing, and we think it would be wonderful for members of the CLG to come for a taster session. We will be offering demonstration of social and cognitive tasks to the public. We will also talk to people about factors that may explain why older people appear vulnerable to being defrauded-- our accounts relate to the ability to detect lies, and to see the world from others' perspectives.

Jess and Lara will be at Campus in the City in St Nicholas Arcades from 10.30 to 15.30 next Friday if you would like to go along.

And finally….

So with that, we approach the end of the Lent term. It has been quite a different term with lots of change regarding building work going on around campus and the industrial action taking place over recent weeks. We expect to run the postponed lectures sometime later in the year, so nothing of our original planned programme will be missed. We will keep you informed about that as we go.

We return on Wednesday 25th April 2018 when Peter Reilly, former graduate from Lancaster University and retired teacher of economics, politics and business studies will kick off the new term with a Lunchtime Lecture on the subject of tackling income and wealth inequality.

And with that I would like to thank everyone for their support throughout this term.

The CLG Steering Group hope you have a good Easter break and we look forward to returning with longer days and warmer temperatures.

Best wishes,

Dave and the whole CLG Steering Group.

Creative Adventures in Dementia
A Life More Ordinary Festival
17 & 18 May 2018
The Dukes, Lancaster

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Still Me Multi- Arts Group, The Dukes

The Dukes are thrilled to present a unique 2 day exploration of how the arts are touching the lives of people living with dementia in wonderful and remarkable ways.

‘A Life More Ordinary’ at The Dukes in Lancaster invites people living with dementia, family, friends, health and care professionals, artists, researchers and clinical commissioning teams to share and discover some of the ground-breaking ways that the arts help us to understand dementia better and play an invaluable part in how we journey through life together.

This event will include keynote speakers, performances and workshops by some of the most pioneering artists, practitioners, researchers and extraordinary people working with people with dementia, in a variety of settings and in unique ways.

Please join us to share your insights.

A Life More Ordinary is a 3 year project led by The Dukes, which aims to improve the lives of people with dementia and memory loss and their friends and families by providing fun creative activities and film screenings in an adapted environment. The programme currently has 13 partner venues across the UK.

There are a limited number of Early Bird tickets available until January 2018.
General release tickets will be announced soon; keep posted for updates, key note speakers and activities.

To book Early Bird tickets to A Life More Ordinary Festival visit http://bit.ly/2iJD5Jp

Find out more about A Life More Ordinary: http://bit.ly/2AqdDmM

For further information contact: ggraystone@dukes-lancaster.org

Interview with George...

This is an audio interview conducted a few years ago with our friend George Henson on the subject of 'Learning Methods' in which George told us a little about his life.
The interviewer is David Pedder.

Thoughts #1 George Henson CLG short film_0001 by CLGshortfilms

An Outline of the CLG...

The Continuing Learning Group is an educational group based at Lancaster University aimed primarily at those middle aged and beyond, but open to everyone.

We are an independent group based in the Centre for Ageing Research (C4AR) in the University's
School of Health and Medicine.

In this Wikispace we aim to provide information and resources for those either enrolled on the
education programme, those who just want casual involvement or even those just browsing the web.
All are welcome.

This is a place to find up-to-date news and information relevant to older learners, listen to
lecture recordings, enjoy presentations etc.

This site exists for your benefit.
We hope you enjoy it!


A varied selection of Lunchtime Lectures delivered by academics take place during term times on

Wednesdays at 1pm in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3 including Question and Answer Sessions.

This is then followed by the Research & Discussion Forum, also in Fylde Lecture Theatre 3.

If you're planning to attend either or both of the above, check the programme:

Lunchtime Lectures

Research & Discussion Forum


If you would like to contact us direct, you can do so by sending an email to:


Please Note: This Wikispace is entirely owned and run by the Continuing Learning Group
and as such Lancaster University and the Centre for Ageing Research are not responsible for the content.

If you would like to make a donation towards our running costs please do so here, thank you:


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

Last week…

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

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

I will post the audio recording of the lecture on our website in due course:

This week…

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

A little information about ‘Care Innovation’...

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

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

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

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

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

We hope you can join us.



(on behalf of the CLG Steering Group)