Monday, 23 December 2013

Welcome to Riseley WEA

Riseley WEA is an adult educational organisation where we offer two sessions of lectures per year on a variety of cultural subjects - a Spring Term and an Autumn term.
With a history going back nearly twenty seven years, we have covered a wide variety of subjects, from history, architecture, music, art, film and many more.
All our lectures are delivered by tutors with extensive knowledge of their subjects and a great deal of experience in teaching interested and enthusiastic adults.
Everyone is welcome.
We meet in the comfort of Riseley Village Hall Lounge where we start each meeting with a welcoming cup of tea or coffee and biscuits.


Spring 2014 Courses 

This term we have two courses running

Europe Between the Wars 
by Stephen Corley

Started Wednesday 15th January 2014

This ten week course will look at the consequences of World War I and the causes of World War II.
The first two weeks lectures dealt with the course and outcome of World War I.
Next will be sessions on the Great Powers in 1918, Making the Peace and Keeping the Peace. The next three sessions will look at threats to peace; the Rise of Hitler; the Great Depression; and the challenge of Aggressive Nationalism in the early 1930's. The concluding three sessions will deal with the growing power of Hitler's Germany, Anglo-French Appeasement and the outbreak of war in 1939.
There will be film clips, handouts, maps, extracts from books,  documents and illustrations. 



Opera - Verdi and Puccini
by Peter Bleasby

Started Tuesday 21st January 2014


This ten week course will look at the great works of these two giants of Italian Opera with excerpts from their combined total of 40 operas
The first weeks lecture examined and compared the early lives of Verdi and Puccini as well as a quick look at the extent of their works.

Future lectures will cover:-

Did the two composers have anything in common?
How did they differ?
How did they get on with their librettists?
What was their attitude to nationalism?
How did they respond to Wagner?
What about their private lives?
How did they deal with failure?
How international were their fames during their lifetimes?

The course looks at all of this and more.

Extracts from all their operas will be seen (or just occasionally heard) and discussed.











Friday, 12 July 2013

Autumn 2013

Welcome to Riseley WEA

Riseley WEA is an adult educational organisation where we offer two sessions of lectures per year on a variety of cultural subjects - a Spring Term and an Autumn term.
With a history going back nearly twenty seven years, we have covered a wide variety of subjects, from history, architecture, music, art, film and many more.
All our lectures are delivered by tutors with extensive knowledge of their subjects and a great deal of experience in teaching interested and enthusiastic adults.
Everyone is welcome.
We meet in the comfort of Riseley Village Hall Lounge where we start each meeting with a welcoming cup of tea or coffee and biscuits.


Autumn Course Riseley

Our Autumn course Songs, Satire and Social Commentary by David Price has now finished.


We enjoyed an entertaining look at history through operettas and musicals – covering both the events depicted in them and the historical context in which they were written.

The course included France in the 19th century (Les Mis√©rables, Orpheus in the Underworld); Weimar Germany (Cabaret, The Threepenny Opera); Belle Epoque Paris and Vienna (The Merry Widow); Depression-era America through Hollywood film musicals; racial tensions in America (Show Boat, West Side Story); the real story of the Trapp Family portrayed in The Sound of Music; pop musicals of the 1950s and 60s and the so-called “Sexual Revolution”; and what some of today’s blockbusters can tell us about our own time.

Illustrated with film clips and musical extracts, photos and cartoons from satirical magazines.
Typical lecture

The course so far- hand outs from each weeks lecture with clips and links from the lectures.




Our term ended with a splendid lunch and social at which 48 of us enjoyed discussing the course and future courses we hope to hold.





Lunch and social after our last lect








Watch this space for next years programme!


See our brochure for courses in Bedfordshire in 2013-2014

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Summer 2013

Welcome to Riseley WEA

Riseley WEA is an adult educational organisation where we offer two sessions of lectures per year on a variety of cultural subjects - a Spring Term and an Autumn term.
With a history going back nearly twenty seven years, we have covered a wide variety of subjects, from history, architecture, music, art, film and many more.
All our lectures are delivered by tutors with extensive knowledge of their subjects and a great deal of experience in teaching interested and enthusiastic adults.
Everyone is welcome.
We meet in the comfort of Riseley Village Hall Lounge where we start each meeting with a welcoming cup of tea or coffee and biscuits.


WEA Centenary

100 miles, 6 counties, 1 day - 1 July 2013

Reaching the ripe old age of 100 is no mean feat for any organisation; it's a birthday worth celebrating!  The Eastern region centenary calendar is filling up with events and activities, and now Media Officer Tim Arnold has set himself a centenary challenge: to cycle 100 miles through all six counties in the Region - in one day!  But there's another reason why Tim's celebrating: this is his tenth year of working at the WEA, and the ride will take place exactly a decade to the day when he started on 1 July 2003.
He is doing this to raise money to support the region's work with those facing social and economic disadvantage, so please visit his fundraising page to dontate through Virgin Money Giving.
Tim said: "I was already thinking about doing something to mark ten years of working at the WEA when Eastern Region became part of my remit.  I started thinking about how I could tie the centenary in, and then it came to me: a century cycle ride.  I am a fairly keen cyclist - I commute by bike as much as possible and have done a few long rides before, most notably the Dunwich Dynamo - but since becoming a dad I haven't had as much time to ride, so I'll need to train hard to get fit enough - it won't be easy!"
Tim decided to add to the challenge by designing a route which takes him through all six counties in the Region.

"I've mapped out a rough route which allows me to pass through all the counties in Eastern Region, ending up at the Regional Office - Cintra House in Cambridge.  Over the next few weeks I'll be working out how I can meet as many WEA people as possible along the way, and hopefully tie in some quick learning activities!  I'll be using social media and geotaggingmy content so people can track my progress along the way.
I wanted to highlight the fact that the WEA is a charity, so this is fundraising activity, too.  I'm aiming to raise £1,000 to support our mission in the Region, and will also be looking for sponsors - decent tyres aren't cheap!  And by coincidece rather than design, this ride also fits nicely with one of our education themes - health and wellbeing."

Click here to visit Tim's fundraising page with Virgin Money Giving


Tim will be blogging about his preparation for the ride over on our blog.  Follow Tim's progress on twitter @TimArnoldWEA. He will be using #WEAEastern100 to tag related tweets.  Good luck, Tim!



Autumn Course Riseley

This Autumn's course will be Songs, Satire and Social Commentary by David Price.

An entertaining look at history through operettas and musicals – covering both the events depicted in them and the historical context in which they were written.

This course will include France in the 19th century (Les Mis√©rables, Orpheus in the Underworld); Weimar Germany (Cabaret, The Threepenny Opera); Belle Epoque Paris and Vienna (The Merry Widow); Depression-era America through Hollywood film musicals; racial tensions in America (Show Boat, West Side Story); the real story of the Trapp Family portrayed in The Sound of Music; pop musicals of the 1950s and 60s and the so-called “Sexual Revolution”; and what some of today’s blockbusters can tell us about our own time.

Illustrated with film clips and musical extracts, photos and cartoons from satirical magazines.

Details of date, time and cost to follow.



Northamptonshire WEA
Our friends and neighbours in Northamptonshire will be running a programme of guided visits during summer 2013 - just one remaining!

VISIT TO DRAYTON HOUSE LOWICK NNI4 3BG
Fee £11 Wednesday, 3 July at 10.30 am

Drayton House has been a family home for almost
a thousand years. The core of the house built by
Simon de Drayton about 1300 and has a unique
spiral cantilever oak staircase of c.1680 and a
superb embroidered State Bed of 1700. The house
passed to the Sackville family in 1770, but only two
rooms were changed. The house, therefore, still
reflects its medieval origins and the taste of the
Baroque period, and remains very much a family
home. Please note there are many steps and
staircases on the tour.
Meet in front of the house
 Further Information from Peta Jellis 01933 356914
Booking essential - tickets needed