Adult Learning in Heritage (12 May, 2016)

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Join us here on Thursday 12 May, from 12.30-1.30pm to discuss the ins and outs of adult learning. It's an area of practice that has always been an integral part of the educational work that we do in the heritage sector. 
The chat is timed to coincide with the inaugural Festival of Learning – an expanded, celebratory successor to the hugely successful, long-running Adult Learners’ Week. The Festival – delivered by the Learning and Work Institute (formerly NIACE) – is a major celebration of lifelong learning across England, from informal, participatory and community-level learning, to work-based training. 
So, join me and my HLF colleague Amy, as well as Sara Peskett from First Base Housing in Brighton (@BHT_Sussex); Dean Veal, from UCL Museums (@deanveal); and freelancer/consultant Essex Havard (@_ALACS), and colleagues from the Learning & Work Institute (@LearnWorkUK) to discuss different types of adult learning programmes in heritage, and the positive impact they can have on everyone involved. And of course, ask us any questions about your own heritage learning programmes or ideas.

In the meantime, you can also read this new HLF blog on adult learning, heritage and the Festival of Learning:

View John McMahon's profile John McMahon May 9 2016 - 4:50pm
  1. Hello, and welcome to our Online Community live chat.

    Today we’ll be discussing all things adult learning in heritage, and I’m joined by my colleague John, as well as some special expert guests and grantees who have been there and done it before. They'll be on hand for the next hour to answer our questions, and yours.

    Before we get started, a little bit of housekeeping:

    • We encourage everyone following along to ask questions at any time, but we may wait until the end of the chat, once we’ve got through our initial, over-arching questions, to answer these.
    • The screen will not automatically update as each comment is posted, so we would encourage you to refresh your screen every 5-10 minutes to see the latest posts. (Hit F5 on your keyboard to refresh, or if you're using a Mac, Command + R.
    • And when links are posted, you might want to open these in a new window, so you don't lose your place in the chat. To do this, hold Control + click on the link, or on a Mac, Command + click.

    Now, without further ado, I’ll let my guests introduce themselves.

  2. View Amy Freeborn's profile Amy Freeborn
    Offline | Last seen: 1 day 8 hours ago
  3. Hello all, and thanks for joining us this afternoon for this Live Chat about adult learning and heritage.

    As ever, we’ve got a set of questions on the topic that we’re going to run through with our excellent panel; but it’s also an opportunity for you to share your comments and questions, as we go along. 

  4. View John McMahon's profile John McMahon
    Offline | Last seen: 5 months 3 weeks ago
  5. We’ve got quite a large panel here today, so we’ll start off with some introductions!


    Please tell us a little about who you are, what organisation, a flavour of the types of heritage/adult learning work you’ve been involved in…

  6. View John McMahon's profile John McMahon
    Offline | Last seen: 5 months 3 weeks ago
  7. Hello I’m Steve Mulligan, Assistant Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Learning and Work Institute. Learning and Work Institute was formed in January 2016 after a merger between NIACE (National Institute of Adult Continuing Education) and CESI (Centre for Economic and Social Inclusion

    Whilst we don’t directly deliver Heritage provision, we have long supported learning in Heritage sector, and have over the years published a wealth of compelling evidence on the importance of the sector in engaging learners, especially for family learning and engaging older learners. We have previously also provided grant funding for initiatives such as Learning through our Heritage with museums and libraries across the UK. The heritage sector have been longstanding and strong supporters of our flagship Festival of Learning/Adult Learners Week Campaign - notably Museum’s at Night. Also delighted that many libraries across the country pt on events during the festival, helping us to reach a much wider cross section of the population - and central to the campaign’s success.  

  8. View Steve Mulligan's profile Steve Mulligan
    Offline | Last seen: 2 years 5 months ago
  9. Dean Veall here, Learning and Access Officer at the Grant Museum of Zoology which is part of University College London’s Museums and Collections along with the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology and the UCL Art Museum. Here at UCL Museums we run a wide diversity of adult learning programmes such as film nights, drawing classes, lunchtime talks and walks.

  10. View Dean Veall's profile Dean Veall
    Offline | Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
  11. Hi everyone, I’m the Heritage Project Officer at BHT First Base and I deliver a heritage learning and skills-development initiative, providing conservation training and research activities for adults who are street homeless in Brighton & Hove.

  12. View Sara Peskett's profile Sara Peskett
    Offline | Last seen: 2 years 3 months ago
  13. Joy Hart – Manager Hive

    Claire Wellesley Smith – Project Co-ordinator Fabric of Bradford

     Hive is a community arts centre using creative processes to engage people in Bradford District. Our work focuses on development, wellbeing, sustainability and cohesion to build stronger communities. ‘The Fabric of Bradford’ (2012-2015) was funded by HLF. It explored the textile dyeing heritage of the city 1800-1913 using community research and hands on craft engagement with people from across the city. We engaged in archive research, site specific projects exploring local textile dyeing businesses and set up community gardens growing heritage dye plants for use in practical sessions exploring the colours important to the Bradford Trade. We worked with families, young people, older people, BAME community groups and  mental health organisations during the project.

  14. View Joy Hart's profile Joy Hart
    Offline | Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
  15. Hi Essex here…

    I am a consultant, specialising in adult learning and the culture sector but am most interested in where they overlap.

    Briefly, my career has been split between museum education and event organising (Nat Mus Wales, Bath City Council, Council of Museums in Wales) and the promotion of adult learning to those in most need (as a member of staff at NIACE in Wales).

    I have attended, and spoken at, many conferences including several on continental Europe where I have developed an interesting network of people who are doing innovative things with museums and adult learning.

    On leaving NIACE I decided that I was long enough in the tooth, and loud enough, to go my own way and have the freedom to say what I liked about both sectors and work for whom I liked too.

    Clients of my consultancy (Adult Learning and the Culture Sector) include National Army Museum, Groundwork South East and St. Mary's Priory Church, Abergavenny.

    I'm also a drummer and a cyclist, but not at the same time…

  16. View Essex Havard's profile Essex Havard
    Offline | Last seen: 2 years 5 months ago
  17. A nice, open question for us all, next!

    Why are learning programmes for adults important for you/your organisation?

  18. View John McMahon's profile John McMahon
    Offline | Last seen: 5 months 3 weeks ago
  19. Our vision is for a society in which everyone has opportunities to learn and work and be supported to achieve their ambitions in life, community and work.

    Our ambition is for:

    Higher rates of employment and better jobs: learning and skills are a key barrier to work for many, and can provide a hook into engagement.

    Higher productivity for a stronger economy: learning and skills are a key driver of productivity and successful businesses.

    Equality and inclusion for more social justice: learning and skills can help people find work, progress in work and boost earnings potential.

    Active citizens and healthy communities: the wider benefits of learning and skills support more vibrant, tolerant, safe and healthy communities.

    The Heritage sector is a critical partner to help us achieve these aims.

  20. View Steve Mulligan's profile Steve Mulligan
    Offline | Last seen: 2 years 5 months ago


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