ISSUE No. 146 NOVEMBER 2009
THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING UNION Creating global understanding through English
ESU Albania is Launched in Tirana The ESU extended its reach into one of the lesser-known corners of Europe with the launch of ESU Albania in Tirana on 7 September. Albania who are keen to promote the EnglishSpeaking Union and its education programmes. Off to a flying start, our newest ESU has already introduced its public speaking programme in schools and entered its first competitor in the International Public Speaking Competition this year, who spoke on The New Start. As part of the launch programme, delegates went on a two-day cultural tour of this fascinating country which has only recently begun to open up to the outside world after 46 years of Communist rule.
Ralph Land and Zenel Hoxha
The first day took the visitors to Berat, ‘the city of one thousand windows’. Here, they toured a castle which overlooks the city and is protected by UNESCO.
Contents Albania Launch . . . . . .Page 1 Albania Launch cont’d . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 2 Green ESU . . . . . . . . .Page 2 Oxford Conference . . . .Page 3 Poetree Competition . . . . . . . .Page 3 Shakespeare Seminar . . . . . . . . . . .Page 4 Competition Round-Up . . . . . . . . .Page 4 Young SSE Reunion . . .Page 5 Capitol Hill Gathering . . . . . . . . . .Page 5 Washington Reflections . . . . . . . . .Page 6 Speech and Debate Tour . . . . . . . .Page 6 English Tuition Starts . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 6 New Faces . . . . . . . . .Page 7 Conference Goes West . . . . . . . . .Page 7 Diary Dates . . . . . . . .Page 8
Thirty-one delegates from nine countries made the journey to the capital to welcome this latest addition to the ESU’s ever-growing network across the globe. Chairman Zenel Hoxha was originally put in touch with the ESU through a mutual contact, Ralph Land, coined as the godfather of ESU Albania. Mr Hoxha is also President of the Albania British Chamber of Commerce. With the support of his committee, there is now a varied and determined group of people in
Some of the local wine was sampled before guests returned to Tirana. The second day introduced the group to Durres, the ancient Greco-Roman port city of Epidamnus-Dyrrachium, where they visited the Byzantine city walls and Roman Amphitheatre. It was evident that insufficient investment in protecting Albania’s heritage has made the promotion of tourism in the country a huge challenge, but nevertheless, conference delegates were impressed by what they saw. Continued on page 2. Tirana at night, www.fotolia.com
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ESU Albania is Launched in Tirana, continued Lord Watson represented the ESU at a press conference celebrating the launch, with the Rector of Tirana University and there was much press interest in the ESU’s launch with eight television channels reporting on the event. All outlined the importance of the ESU’s presence in creating understanding through the medium of a common language. The launch ceremony itself was held in the Residence of the British Ambassador, HE Fiona McIlwham. She was greatly encouraged by the efforts of the new ESU team, underscoring the importance of the presence of NGOs like the ESU in Albania. She said that this marked a positive step towards EU membership. In his speech, Mr Hoxha emphasized how today English serves as the common language of business, technology, commerce and diplomacy. Zenel Hoxha, Lord Watson, Dr Sali Beresha, British Ambassador to Albania HE Ms Fiona McIlwham, Albanian Ambassador to the court of St James’s HE Mr Zef Mazi
The following day, the Prime Minister of Albania attended the ‘grand opening’ of ESU Albania at the National Museum in Tirana amidst more press interest.
Albania joined NATO in April 2009 and is a potential candidate for European Union accession. During the group’s time there, it became obvious that Albania’s entrance into the EU occupied the minds of many. Although the economy continues to grow, the country is still one of the poorest in Europe, with a large informal economy, troubled infrastructure, high unemployment rates and social problems. However, a concerted effort is being made to conform to the standards set by the Copenhagen Criteria.
ESU Albania did all they could to ensure the visiting delegation experienced the best of what the country had to offer. We cannot thank them enough for hosting the delegation so well.
There are many challenges, but Albania has made tremendous positive changes. Efforts are being made to increase government funds with a particular focus on encouraging much needed foreign investment. Inclusion in the EU would give Albania preferential trading rights and the political status needed to drive economic growth.
The support given by the British Ambassador in Albania and the Albanian Ambassador to the Court of St James’s and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is promising for this young ESU as it begins its journey.
The launch of ESU Albania coincided with a visit by a trade delegation, also co-ordinated by Zenel Hoxha. Negotiations are underway regarding the improvement of land development and moves are being made to repair the country’s infrastructure. The ESU made useful contacts with government officials including the Foreign Minister.
A statue in Durres
The ESU is Going Green The ESU is running a special season on climate change and green issues. From November 2009 until May 2010, activities and events for members, schools and the general public on topics of ecological significance, climate change and human security will be run both locally and nationally. ESU branches will have the opportunity to take part in initiatives such as tree planting, recycling and sustainable living. And just to prove that the ESU can also practise what it preaches, we are making our own efforts to go green. ESU News is already printed on recycled paper and, as chilled Dartmouth House staff will testify, the organisation has, for many years, reduced its carbon footprint owing to the fact that there is no central heating in its offices! Over the coming months we will be introducing new initiatives to reduce our impact on the environment.
Staff from Dartmouth House wear green to celebrate the launch of Green ESU 2
Meanwhile, we welcome the input of all our members and would love to add photos of your events and activities. Please visit www.esu.org/uk/branches for details of local events. See diary dates online and on the back cover for Green ESU events. More will follow, please keep checking back!
Conference Promotes Global Understanding This is an aspect that is clearly well received and appreciated by those who attend. ‘Each meal time was a valuable lesson in human understanding–listening about home and sharing our lives,’ wrote Warren D. Ashby from the USA. Sheena Kapoor from India felt ‘the rich cultural diversity made it a truly memorable experience’, whilst Turkey’s Berfu Guven said: ‘I think I will remember this conference as one of the turning points of my life. I am 30, and I was together with 34 delegates from 28 countries for one week whom I didn’t know before. It added a lot to me [learning about] different cultures, points of views, lots of English speaking, new acquirements’. Delegates enjoy lunch at Mansfield College
For more than 40 years, the ESU’s International Relations Conference has afforded overseas delegates the chance to expand their knowledge of Britain and discuss its international role in the world today.
Topics discussed during the week included climate change, the 21st century, the end of western dominance, international trade and industry, US politics, global themes in education and the state of the Arts in Britain today.
This year was no exception with 34 participants from 28 countries gathering at Mansfield College, Oxford for the six-day programme. New ground was broken with Cyprus, Finland, Malta and Turkey represented at the conference for the first time.
There was also a hugely enjoyable trip to Stratford to see the RSC performance of As You Like It, at the Courtyard Theatre. As well as the formal conference sessions, the aim of the initiative is to bring together people from different cultures to share experiences and learn from each other.
Ulla Harjulin from Finland summed up the overall sentiment: ‘What a wonderful way of increasing global understanding!’ The English-Speaking Union would like to thank the ESU Cambridge Welland Valley Branch, ESU Epping Forest Branch, ESU London Branch, ESU Oxfordshire Branch, ESU West Sussex Branch and ESU York and District Branch for their very generous sponsorship of the conference and their continued support of the programme.
ESU Merchandise When visiting Dartmouth House, why not take a moment to look at the display cabinet, where you will find an exclusive range of gift items, all featuring the ESU logo. The items for sale are reasonably priced starting from just £3.50 and range from key fobs to an impressive assortment of glassware, ties, and jewellery. Ask at reception for details.
Introducing Poetree The first major initiative in the green ESU season is the Education Department’s Poetree Competition for London primary schools. Imagine a World Without Trees is the theme and is inspired by the 2009 Marsh Award for Children’s Literature in Translation. Administered by the ESU, the 2009 winner is Toby Alone, translated into English by Sarah Ardizzone, a novel with a powerful ecological message. Entry is free, and schools are being asked to submit a minimum of 10 poems of any style and length. The winning school will receive copies of Toby Alone, donated by Walker Books and a workshop delivered by Sarah.
Katherine Plummer, the ESU’s Head of Education Programmes says: “We are excited about engaging with children and schools in London, in this way. It is a great way for branches to become more involved with their local schools and communities and we hope that they will take advantage of this opportunity.” Further information and downloadable support materials about the Poetree Competition can be found at www.esu.org/green or by contacting Katherine Plummer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shakespeare and His Stage Patrick Spottiswoode, Director of Globe Education led workshops on Shakespeare in Several Classrooms and Shakespeare in Several Tongues, to help the teachers consider how Shakespeare is translated both in terms of performance and classroom curricula across the world. Although only twenty teachers attend the course annually, the outreach is much wider as these teachers return to their own countries sharing their new ideas with their colleagues and go on to practice new methods of teaching Shakespeare to their students. Marcos Daud from Brazil wrote, ‘When I return to Brazil I intend to share all that I have learned during the course with the teachers of our school. The new ideas I have learnt during my week, will hopefully lead to fresh discussions and new approaches’. Participants enjoy the opportunity to share ideas over lunch
Teaching Shakespeare in the classroom can often be challenging and making it accessible for students can be a petrifying feat for a teacher. The Globe Cultural Seminar, a collaboration between the ESU and Globe Education, is an intense week of seminars, plays and workshops about teaching Shakespeare to students. It is specifically designed for teachers whose first language is not English.
‘The sessions we attended during the seminar highlighted the rich and multiple lines of meaning opened up by the Shakespearean text in performance and introduced us to various exercises and methods that can be used in the classroom to demonstrate that. Such practical approaches to teaching Shakespeare would be particularly useful for my students, as most of them will become teachers of English in the public school sector.’ Stella Achilleos, Cyprus.
Teachers from 20 countries took part in this year’s Globe Cultural Seminar held in August. Delegates were afforded the chance to develop and exchange their ideas on teaching Shakespeare with people across the globe. They also gained active, practical approaches to teaching Shakespeare creatively in the classroom that will inspire, enhance and develop classroom practice. Theatre performances are an integral part of the week and there were visits to Globe productions of Romeo and Juliet, As You Like It and Troilus and Cressida combined with the opportunity to meet and question the company members. Through movement workshops, voice classes and demonstrations in costume and design, the group examined the relationship between actor and audience, considering how it could inform their understanding of the relationship between teacher and student within the classroom.
A full house in the round at the magnificent Globe Theatre
Schools are Eager for ESU Competitions September and October were predictably hectic with schools returning following the summer holiday and eager to enter the schools’ competitions. The ESU Schools Public Speaking Competition is in its 50th year and with former winners including Rory Bremner (impressionist and playwright) and Anita Anand (BBC Presenter), it is one of the leading platforms for young people to develop and prove their oratorical skills. Each year, branches work hard to encourage new schools to take part and volunteers are always welcome to help contact schools, judge at rounds and support students from the audience. Ask your local branch for more information. The Schools Mace is also underway, with almost 500 schools in England allocated rounds and host schools. There are always a few calls for judges and if you would be interested in helping out, please get in touch with Dartmouth House and speak to Alasdair Wallace.
In February and March there will be six Saturdays when the second rounds will be held across the country. Anyone interested in helping and judging should get in touch in late November.
The John Smith Memorial Mace for England, our universities debating competition, is now set for 27 and 28 November. The occasion will see (and hear) the best and brightest from English universities battle it out to become the national debating champion and represent their country in the international final. Last year, the title was won by the Oxford Union who went on to win the international final against the Scottish, Welsh and Irish champions. With former winners including Donald Dewar, Bob Marshall and Professor Anthony Clare, the John Smith Mace, generously sponsored by Baillie Gifford, is a true testing ground for this country’s future leading lights. The ESU – Essex Court Chambers National Mooting Competition has also started. Law faculties around the country are coaching their students for this most prestigious of competitions. A minipupillage, a cash prize and an elevated status are on offer for the winners. The University of Manchester became the 38th winner in 2008-09 represented by Karamvir Chadha and Hannah Gates. The duo will be among the ESU competition winners who will receive their award from HRH The Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace in mid-November.
New Forum for Young SSE Alumni from Western Reserve Academy in Ohio, Lawrenceville School, near Princeton or the Hotchkiss School, Connecticut. All serve to illustrate the breadth of opportunity that SSE scholarships offer. Alumni Officer Cristel Guajardo said afterwards: “The event enabled our young alumni to reinforce friendships, establish new ones and to enjoy a social event and networking opportunities. This is all part of what the Alumni Association hopes to achieve and we will ensure that we continue to cater for younger members in the future.
Cristel Guajardo, Brian Marsh and Sir John Birch
Recent alumni from the ESU’s Secondary Schools Exchange (SSE) programme now have their own dedicated forum thanks to a request from Emma Pinder, who so enjoyed her exchange in 2001-02 that she wrote to the ESU asking if it was possible to keep the spirit of the exchange going. ‘The SSE experience is something very special, but it does not have to end when you return home. The Alumni Association can offer so much to young people if you choose to get involved.’ The ESU duly took note and so, on 15 September, Dartmouth House hosted a reunion for those who went on exchanges between 1988 and 2008. It was a vibrant event where everyone enjoyed talking to and meeting other alumni, as well as hearing Sir John Birch’s reflections on his time as an SSE scholar. Sir John was introduced to guests by Martin Mulloy, Director of Education, who briefly outlined the glittering diplomatic career that Sir John went on to enjoy after his scholarship in 1958-9.
Suzy Stephens, Jenny’s guest and Jenny Lowthrop
”The reunion ended with a lot of energised alumni who are willing to help the ESU in any possible manner and we welcome their suggestions. I would also like to thank Sir John for his contribution.”
Our guest speaker spoke of the striking differences between his travel to the US on the Queen Mary and how scholars travel to the US today. He showed his appreciation of the great opportunity that the ESU gives scholars during a year when they encounter a different educational style that includes a lot of hard work. “I hold the US in special regard and consider it part of my life,” he said. He spent a great deal of time at the reception talking to young alumni and listening to their experiences, whether they were
Camron Miller with his guest, John Tomlinson and Neil Stoker
Capitol Hill Reunion At the end of September, 35 Capitol Hill alumni returned to Dartmouth House to see old friends, meet new ones and to catch up with news from Washington. The evening was possible thanks to the support of Braxton Moncure who travelled from Washington for this memorable occasion. He was pleased to see many of the alumni with whom he had strong links and was delighted with the event. The reunion drew participants from a variety of years, including an alumnus from 1987, the year that the programme was founded.
We were also delighted to welcome a group newly returned from the US. It is always heartwarming for the ESU to hear the personal experiences of alumni and this event served to reinforce the value that that interns put on the Parliamentary Exchange Programme to Capitol Hill and the Assemblee Nationale in Paris. Alumni events, such as this, are important occasions that enable fond memories to be re-kindled and often, key contacts to be made or re-connected. The ESU Alumni Association hopes to organise more events for Capitol Hill alumni in the future.
L-R - Pantellis Palividas, Ian Noble and Chris Holder-Ross, Capitol Hill interns 2009 5
Report from Capitol Hill In these competitive circumstances, the ESU and CUA, with help from the Washington DC branch of the ESU of the US, found placements for nine of the British students, a situation deeply regrettable for our one unsuccessful scholar. The lucky interns who did spend their summer working on the Hill returned full of enthusiasm for the new administration. Whether placed with Republicans or Democrats, they spoke of the immense feeling of change that has captured the imagination of politicians and public alike. Another British student spent the summer in Paris, working in the offices of the Assemblée Nationale, exchanging directly with a French student who interned for Simon Hughes MP, Liberal Democrat member for Southwark and Bermondsey. All the 2009 interns are now back in the UK, and several attended the reunion on 28 September (see p 5).
Capitol Hill alumni including James Probert, Head of the Centre (second from right) with Braxton Moncure (third from left) and ESU Governor Bilal Mahmood
Never has enthusiasm been higher amongst young Americans for their political system. According to Professor Greg Baldi of the Catholic University of America (CUA), the ESU’s partner in the trans-Atlantic part of the scheme, “the Obama factor has led to an unprecedented number of internship applications from the US this summer - most offices are refusing to accept young people from outside their own state or district.”
However, the last few weeks have been tinged with sadness for alumni of the programme on hearing of the death of Senator Edward Kennedy. Senator Kennedy had taken scholars on the programme almost every year since the ESU started sending students from the UK in 1988. Sir Patrick Cormack MP, who arranges placements for the CUA students in the offices of MPs at Westminster, sent his condolences to the office and family of Senator Kennedy, and alumni who had worked in his office shared their own memories and signed a letter of condolence at the reunion of Capitol Hill alumni at Dartmouth House.
Speech and Debate Show Hits the Road The annual schools competitions road show took place in September and toured seven locations this year starting in Brighton before taking in Leicester, Durham, Hereford, Liverpool and Plymouth, finishing back at Dartmouth House on 27 September. Alasdair, Kallina and Sayeqa, members of Centre staff, were joined by Ben Jasper, an experienced debate mentor from Oxford University. More than sixty schools attended the sessions across the country gaining valuable insights and training for both students and teachers to help them prepare for the debating and public speaking competitions. Mace sessions began with a show debate from the mentors, which students were asked to analyse as if they were judges. There were also games and exercises to teach the important skills which they will need to do well in public speaking and debate competitions. As part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the ESU Schools Public Speaking Competition this year, Anthony Harris (of ESU Brighton) gave up his own time to accompany the road show and deliver a dedicated session on the public speaking competition. Many hours of work went into preparing and editing video material from public speaking rounds to give all the students and teachers a master class in the competition. This added a new and exciting element to the usual tour.
A roadshow workshop in Leicester
Several ESU members came along to various sessions to meet some of the students and the staff from Dartmouth House. A special mention should go to Brighton College, Archbishop Blanch School (Liverpool), Hereford Cathedral School and Plymouth University which were all generous enough to provide free venues for the tour and we are most grateful to them all.
English in Action September brought a new term of English in Action at Dartmouth House, with many new students starting their lessons with their volunteer tutors. This programme works to help adults or whom English is an additional language with their English conversational skill.
There are benefits for both the student and tutor with many volunteers reporting that they have picked up cookery tips, travel advice and knowledge of far distant countries from their students!
At the moment, there are around 16 students enrolled on the scheme who come from places such as Italy, Thailand, Japan, Brazil and Indonesia. The ESU is always looking for additional English in Action volunteers. You just need a love of meeting people, an enthusiasm for sharing English conversation and a little free time. Please contact the Education department for more information, email@example.com or on 020 7529 1550.
New Faces committees and identify ways in which we can increase our income in order to fund the further development of ESU’s programme of charitable activities.” The Centre for Speech and Debate welcomed two new members of staff in September. Alasdair Wallace, Competitions Officer, is responsible for administering the Schools Mace, the national debating championship. This is a flagship of our work with schools. Alasdair will also manage the relationship between the Schools Mace and that and the Schools Public Speaking Competition, run by branches across England and Wales.
Jill and Alasdair
Jill Lloyd joins the ESU as Director of Administration and Finance, a newly created post. She explains her background for us. “I have previously worked for KPMG and Coopers & Lybrand managing family trusts for high net-worth individuals. I moved into the voluntary sector in 1996 in order to be more directly involved with the day to day activities and decision-making of charitable trusts. I first worked for a children’s charity associated with Great Ormond Street Hospital, then a disability charity, and a research charity. Most recently, I project-managed the creation of a think tank for Lord Sainsbury. “At the ESU, I am working closely with Mike Lake on a deep review of the governance, administrative operations, use of assets, the trading subsidiary and public benefit of our activities. So far, the main focus of my work has been to review and up-date Human Resources procedures, draft terms of reference for the myriad of
Alasdair is a former national public speaking champion, having won the Rotary’s competition in 2004 representing Hutchesons’ Grammar School in Glasgow. He studied international relations at the University of St Andrew’s, where he was a leading light of the radio station, and he comes to us with formidable experience of youth work and outreach, administering a major annual festival in London, and pioneering innovative approaches to publicity and communication in the new media. Sayeqa Islam, who hails from Bangladesh, via New Zealand, is our new Debate Education Officer. She is responsible for carrying out the majority of teaching in pupil workshops and teacher seminars across the country, as part of our important outreach project Discover Your Voice. Her experience in coaching and assessing debate spans Australasia, Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East; her competitive success is just as global, including winning not just national championships in New Zealand, but also one of the largest British competitions, alongside top rankings at a number of international tournaments. Sayeqa has degrees in both law and criminology from the Victoria University of Wellington.
Branches Conference Heads West This year’s Branches Conference was hosted in Wales, for the first time, and its location could not have been better – the Angel Hotel, right in the heart of Cardiff, opposite Cardiff Castle and just around the corner from the Millennium Stadium. A welcome reception was held at Techniquest, the amazing interactive discovery centre on Cardiff Bay and the opening dinner at the Angel entertained guests with the well-known Bridgend Male Choir (Cor Meibion Penybont)! Writer and biographer, Hugo Vickers was the guest speaker at the Saturday Gala Dinner. A full report on the conference appears in Branches News.
Delegates enjoy Techniquest in Cardiff Bay
Albania Factbox Here a few facts about Albania, the country where our latest ESU has been launched. Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912, but was conquered by Italy in 1939. Communist partisans took over the country in 1944. Albania allied itself first with the USSR (until 1960), and then with China (to 1978). In the early 1990s, Albania ended 46 years of Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. GDP: $21.81 billion (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 117 Population: 3.6 million (2009 est). 7
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Wednesday 4 November Fortnum & Mason owns a collection of British and overseas paintings dating from the 18th century to the present day. Fortnum’s archivist, Dr Andrea Tanner, will give a brief talk on the background of the collection before a guided tour of the artwork on display. In aid of the Chilton Art History Scholarship. Doors 5pm, Reception 6pm, followed by talk and tour at 6.30pm. Tickets: £22.50 to include wine and canapés. Contact: Gillian Parker Thursday 5 November at 6.00 pm Panel discussion in conjunction with the Pilgrims Society on President Obama’s first year. Stryker McGuire, lately London Bureau Chief at Newsweek, and now editor of the new London-based magazine International Quarterly, will return by popular demand as anchorman, to be joined by Greg Katz of Associated Press and Jennifer Siebens of CBS News. Tickets for this event are £27.00 each, and guests are welcome. For those who wish to stay on at Dartmouth House following the reception, a dinner will be available for a further £43.00 each. Contact: Tessa Wells, Tel: 01622 606404 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tuesday 10 November at 7.00 pm Mike Hulme will be speaking at Dartmouth House on his new book, Why We Disagree About Climate Change. Drawing upon 25 years of professional work as an international climate change scientist and public commentator, Mike will provide a unique insider’s account of the emergence of this phenomenon and the diverse ways in which it is understood. He uses different standpoints from science, economics, faith, psychology, communication, sociology, politics and development to explain why we disagree about climate change. In this way he shows that climate change, far from being simply an ‘issue’ or a ‘threat’, can act as a catalyst to revise our perception of our place in the world. Why We Disagree About Climate Change is an important contribution to the ongoing debate over climate change and its likely impact on our lives. Tickets: £8 to include a glass of wine or fruit juice. Copies of the book will be available for signing and purchase. Contact: Alison Wakefield Wednesday 11 November 10.30 – 11.30 am Coffee morning at Dartmouth House for members and their friends. Contact: Alison Wakefield
Tuesday 24 November at 7.00 pm International Action: Too Little, Too Late? Q&A session chaired by Professor Robert Spicer. As part of the ESU Green season, a panel of experts will be questioned at Imperial College. Contact: Cristel Guajardo Friday 27 November Walter Hines Page and Chautauqua Scholarships This is the deadline for applications to both scholarships to be submitted to your union. For more information, please see www.esu.org.
DECEMBER Monday 7 December at 7.00 pm English pre-eminent military historian Sir Max Hastings will be speaking on his new book Finest Years: Churchill as a Warlord 1940-45, at Dartmouth House. Winston Churchill was the greatest war leader Britain ever had. In 1940, the nation rallied behind him in an extraordinary fashion. But thereafter, argues Max Hastings, there was a deep divide between what Churchill wanted from the British people and their army, and what they were capable of delivering. Tickets: £8 to include a glass of wine or fruit juice. Copies of the book will be available for signing and purchase. Contact: Alison Wakefield Wednesday 9 December 7.00 pm The English-Speaking Union Carol Concert You are invited to attend the 2009 concert with readings and carols at Dartmouth House. Tickets: £15 to include mulled wine and minced pies. Contact: Alison Wakefield Wednesday 9 December 10.30 – 11.30 am Coffee Morning at Dartmouth House for members and their friends. Contact: Alison Wakefield Thursday 10 December at 6.15 pm The 2009 ESU Churchill Lecture will take place at Guildhall. The guest speaker is Her Excellency Madam Fu Ying, Chinese Ambassador to the Court of St James. The event will be followed by a reception. Tickets: £30 ESU members, £45 non-members, £100 VIP tickets Contact: Gillian Parker
Wednesday 11 November Poetree Competition for London Schools. Deadline for submissions. Contact: Katherine Plummer
Dartmouth House will be closed from Wednesday 23 December 2009 and re-open on Monday 4 January.
Wednesday 18 November at 7.00 pm Martin Bell will be speaking on his new book A Very British Revolution: The Expenses Scandal and How to Save our Democracy. Former BBC reporter, Britain’s first Independent MP in 50 years and tireless campaigner for trust in politics, Martin Bell had vowed never to write another book; an 88p bathplug changed all that as he will explain. Tickets: £8 to include a glass of wine/fruit juice. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing. Contact: Alison Wakefield
The Bar will be closed to members during lunchtime on Wednesday, 3 December 2009. Drinks can still be purchased by members and consumed in the Wedgwood Room or Foyer. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
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