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 26th May 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Wicked plants: which ones are hiding in your garden?, with Marion Dale, WEA tutor and RHS medal winning garden designer

Do you know what’s hiding in your garden?

In this talk, we’ll explore some of the plants we regularly grow in our gardens which may be the culprits that can kill, intoxicate, irritate or otherwise offend. Join WEA tutor Marion Dale who will take us through some well-known 'wicked plants' and others with a hidden secret. Taking in plants which have had an impact on history through misuse as well as others which have us running for the smelling salts, we’ll finish with a look at some of the plants which were considered to be bad guys who have now made a positive impact on medical science!

To register, click here

 

No lecture on 2nd June due to extended Jubilee holiday weekend

 

Thursday 9th June 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Margaret Thatcher: Britain's most successful revolutionary?, with Dr Michael Lynch, WEA tutor

Nine years after her death, Margaret Thatcher, admired and detested in equal measure in her lifetime, continues to divide opinion.  ‘That bloody woman’, ‘conqueror of fascism’, ‘feminine icon’, ‘a woman but not a sister’, ‘saviour of the economy’, ‘destroyer of British industry’, ‘Churchillian war leader’, ‘Cold War victor’, ‘outstanding international stateswoman’: such are some of the contradictory epithets applied to her.

Leader of the Conservative Party for fifteen years, Prime Minister for eleven, she won three general elections in a row, and can be said to have changed the character of UK politics. In this talk, we will survey the key features of her extraordinary career and offer an assessment of her legacy.

To register, click here

 

Thursday 16th June 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

The dramatic art of the London Underground, with Mike Grundy, WEA tutor

The stations of the London Underground are adorned with works of art depicting the dramatic events and famous figures from ten centuries of London life. The platform walls also feature copies of London’s finest artworks and portray some of the prime artefacts of its great museums.

In this lecture, we will take you under ‘the West End’ on a journey up the Northern Line from Waterloo to Mornington Crescent and on the way, we will celebrate the fine art of the National Gallery, the ‘Eleanor Crosses’ surviving from 1294, and the amazing décor of Eduardo Paolozzi and Daniel Buren at Tottenham Court Road. Join us to discover the treasures of London’s largest art gallery, hidden in plain sight!

To register, click here

 

Thursday 23rd June 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Writing in the shadows: the work of Mark Rutherford, with Dr Mark Crees, WEA tutor and Chair of the Mark Rutherford Society

What role can writing play in the battle against depression? And reading - can that help us too? In what way?

In this lecture, Dr. Mark Crees will look at the work of Mark Rutherford, a little-known Victorian writer who sincerely hoped that his books might help others come through the darkest moments in their lives. Rutherford wrote his books in secret and saw to it that they would remain unpublished until after his death, the first not appearing until 1881. Yet these books still hit home today, over a hundred and forty years later. Rutherford hoped that his writing might free others ‘from that sense of solitude which they find so depressing,’ despite the fact that his own life was, in many respects, so ordinary and undazzling.

Join us on National Writing Day as we explore, with Mark Rutherford, the most important aspects of creativity, the imperatives of mental health and the pursuit of a deeper, lasting happiness.

To register, click here

 

Thursday 30th June 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Art and architecture: Glasgow's stained glass legacy, with Keira McLean, WEA tutor and glass artist

Stained glass has played an important role in the history of art and architecture in the UK since medieval times. It can be found all over the UK, but particularly in Glasgow, one of the centres for stained glass worldwide, producing some of the highest quality windows for homes, churches, palaces and even luxury liners until the demise of the British Empire in 1945. Pioneering and innovative, these windows represent a history of Scotland seldom heard or seen.

Today none of the large studios remain but the art and craft has been kept alive by many individual and small team businesses who continue to innovate and create. Join WEA tutor and glass artist, Keira McLean as she introduces Glasgow’s stained glass past and present, its legacy and its future.

To register, click here

 

Thursday 7th July 2022 - 5.00 - 6.00pm

Save the bees!: impact of modern food production on bee populations, with Catherine Wilcock, WEA tutor

What is it about these small buzzing creatures that captures our imagination? Why are they so important?

In this lecture we’ll discover the variety of species, lifestyles and habits of bees, simple changes we can all make to encourage bees into our outside spaces and why bees are so important within farming, exploring practices which impact on populations both in the UK and the wider world.  We’ll also explore honey production – is it a by-product of farming or an industry in its own right (or a bit of both)? A great way to mark Don’t Step on a Bee Day (10th July)!

To register, click here


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

Spring film club: visual magic in the musicals - download the list of clips, useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Introduction to fungi ecology - download the book list and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Wojtek: the bear who went to war - download useful links, book list and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.

Animal psychology: the wolf in your dog - Download the Q&A, useful links and forthcoming courses by the speaker here.