We are delighted to bring you the WEA's award-winning lecture series.

Don't forget to visit this page regularly to find information on new lectures as they are added to the series.

How do I register to attend?

To register to join a lecture, click on the link beside your chosen lecture and complete your details (you will need your membership number handy).  You will then be sent by email a link and password for the lecture which you should access a few minutes before the lecture start time and enter the password when prompted.

Note: You will need a PC, laptop or tablet with speakers (a webcam and microphone are not essential).  A guide to using our Zoom software can be found here.

Find guidance on how to join a Zoom meeting here.

You can access further support from the Zoom Help Centre.

The lectures come with live subtitles to make the series more accessible to those with hearing difficulties.  Specific guidance on how you can control whether you see the subititles (or otherwise) on your own device is available in your weekly 'Membership update' email every Thursday morning.

**To find lecture recordings, scroll down below the list of forthcoming lectures**


 

Thursday 18th August 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Bodysnatching and Burking: bodies for sale in late Georgian Britain, with Jo Bath, WEA tutor

In the early nineteenth century, demand for corpses for medical education was far outstripping supply, and there was one obvious place to look. If students couldn't 'find' bodies, they could always hire the bodysnatchers, a.k.a. resurrection men, to do the deed for them.

In this talk, we'll explore their methods and gangs, the grisly impact on the Royal Mail, and how people fought back - from mortsafes to coffin guns, before turning to the direct solution applied by the notorious Burke and Hare. Why wait to dig up corpses, when you could just make your own?

To register, click here

 

Thursday 25th August 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

The Victorians abroad: foreign holidays for the middle classes, with Cynthia Brown, WEA tutor

Foreign travel became more accessible to the Victorian middle classes from the mid-19th century - at least some had both the time and the money. While some were happy to travel independently, many opted for the ‘comfort and convenience’ promised by Thomas Cook’s organised tours.

In this talk, we’ll explore the other factors that made this possible and discover the rise of Thomas Cook from its small beginnings in a temperance excursion from Leicester to Loughborough in 1841, through its expansion throughout Europe, the Holy Land and the USA, to his first 'Round the world' tour in the early 1870s. We’ll also take in some of the other travel companies of the time, and some of the advice dispensed to Victorian travellers - from suitable clothing to stocking up with gunpowder!

To register, click here

 

More to follow soon - watch this space!


Our most recent member lectures are posted below: for our full archive of lectures (over 80!), click here.

Please note that the availability of lecture recordings is subject to permission.

 

'Somme Cat' and other animal at war - **recording to follow soon** - download list of books and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Fashion designers on film - download the Q&A and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

The little railways of North Wales - download further information, useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Save the bees: impact of modern food production on bee populations - download useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Writing in the shadows: the work of Mark Rutherford - download the list of books, useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

The dramatic art of the London Underground - download the list of books and forthcoming courses by the speaker here

Thatcher: Britain's most successful revolutionary? - download the Q&A and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Football: the origins of 'the people's game' - download the list of further reading on the topic here.

Beyond the dot: a brief journey into Australian Aboriginal art - download the Q&A, useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

A people's history of housing in Scotland and why it matters - download the list of further reading and useful links here.