Monthly Archives: August 2018

Nostalgia podcast with Alan Le Grys

Dr Chris Deacy, Reader in Theology and Religious Studies in the Department of Religious Studies, has released another instalment of his podcast series on ‘Nostalgia’ interviewing the Reverend Dr Alan Le Grys, who taught as Specialist Associate Lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies.

In a very candid interview, Alan talks about growing up in the South London suburbs on the edge of the largest council estate in the UK in a house that, when he was young, was thought might be haunted, and where he felt the presence of his deceased grandparents. Alan reflects on how, at school, he was the last child to be picked in football, but has in later years embraced running. He has, for example, run the London Marathon for charity. Alan also talks about the ritual of ‘dressing the part’, and offers the aphorism that one needs to ‘Make something routine so that it becomes so much part of your rhythm that you are freed to enter into it.’

Alan discusses the role that music has played in his life, principally in the form of ‘Bach, Beethoven and the Beatles’, and we learn which of the Beatles’ eras he considers to be ‘headache music’, and why. He also talks about why he returned to playing the piano in later years to Grade 5 standard, and how he has also recently accumulated around 10 hours of flying experience as a student pilot.

Despite having three degrees from King’s College London, Alan doesn’t see himself as an academic (leading to a riveting conversation around the theme of ‘imposter’ and ‘fraud’ syndrome) and had never considered either ordination or even going to university until it was suggested to him by his school teachers.

Alan talks movingly about the death of his father, and how his ‘world totally collapsed’, which happened while he was in the midst of writing an essay during his undergraduate degree on the Resurrection, and which he refers to as a ‘deep, formative experience’. Then, in the final part of the interview, we discuss the art of competitiveness and whether it is the process or the end goal that matters, and the way in which he believes the past can be thought of as being reframed by the future.

The podcast is available here.


An exhilarating evening of musical classics with Sir Thomas Allen

One of the leading British Baritones of the 20th century, Sir Thomas Allen, will be performing works from a recently recorded CD including composers such as George Gershwin, Cole Porter and Jerome Kern. Taking place on Friday 21 September at 7.30pm, this is an evening not to be missed!

Sir Thomas Allen is an established star of the great opera houses of the world. At the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, where in 2011 he celebrated the 40th anniversary of his debut with the company, he has sung over fifty roles.  The same year he also celebrated the 30th anniversary of his debut at the Metropolitan Opera, New York. He returns to the Metropolitan Opera in 17/18 for his acclaimed portrayal of Baron Zeta (The Merry Widow).

In addition to his dizzying list of performances in iconic roles in his 40+ year career, Allen has shot into 2018 off 2017 opera appearances that include Music Master (Ariadne auf Naxos) at Glyndebourne Festival Opera and Roc in The Exterminating Angel (Thomas Adés) at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

An Evening with Sir Thomas Allen will be held in the Colyer-Fergusson Hall at Gulbenkian on Friday 21 September. Tickets: Full £15 / Student £10. For more information and tickets please visit the Gulbenkian website or call 01227 769075.

Disability Confident Committed

The University is a disability confident committed employer

Learning & Organisational Development are pleased to announce that the University has achieved Level 1 of the Disability Confident Grading Scheme and we are now accredited with ‘Disability Confident Committed’.

Through Disability Confident, we will work to ensure that disabled people and those with long-term health conditions have the opportunities to fulfil their potential and realise their aspirations. Recognition of this scheme will help us to recruit and retain from the widest possible pool of talent and help develop our valuable skills and experience.

As a Level 1 Disability Confident Committed Employer we have committed to:

  • ensuring our recruitment process is inclusive and accessible
  • communicating and promoting vacancies
  • offering an interview to disabled people who meet the essential criteria
  • anticipating and providing reasonable adjustments as required
  • supporting any exiting employee who acquires a disability or long-term health condition, enabling them to stay in work
  • arranging activities that will make a difference for disabled people.

The Certification (pictured) is valid for 12 months and we can now display the Disability Confident Committed badge on University stationery, correspondence and websites.

Please review where and how you can use this badge within your own processes.

Our work will not stop here.

To demonstrate our continued commitment, during the next 12 months we will review the criteria that is required for us to attain the level 2 certification to become a Disability Confident Employer. We will create an action plan and will work across the University with different departments and the EDI staff networks with the aim to achieve the next level of certification.

Palm Deaf Community Services

British Sign Language Courses

The Centre for English and World Languages is delighted to be offering 20-week courses in British Sign Language starting in October 2018.

The course is run by Palm Deaf BSL Training and will allow participants to achieve a Level 1 Award which is accredited by Signature (the awarding body for BSL qualifications).

Due to popular demand, we are now running two groups:

  • 13:00-16:00
  • 17:00-20:00

For more information please visit the CEWL website.

Alternatively, if you have any questions, please email

Design for the timber framed building

Crowd funding a success!

A new Crowdfunding platform set up by the Development Office to support student projects at Kent has successfully raised thousands to build an environmentally sustainable round wooden timber-framed building – using materials taken from the University’s own coppiced woodland.

This exciting project to create a teaching, learning, and social space set within an ethnobotanical garden was launched at the School of Architecture End of Year Show and quickly took off.

‘We raised well over the £3,000 target in a matter of weeks and thanks to generous match-funding this ambitious and ground-breaking project will enter the building phase at the start of next term,’ said Alex Perkins from the Development Office.

There will now be a further launch to coincide with Freshers Week and the Development Office will be working with Kent Union to choose student-led projects to fund raise through the platform.



Griff Rhys Jones

A Distinguished Visitor Lecture: Griff Rhys Jones

The Canterbury Society and the University of Kent are delighted to invite you to attend this Distinguished Visitor Lecture with special guest speaker, Griff Rhys Jones – writer, actor, comedian, television presenter and the President of Civic Voice, the national body for civic societies such as the Canterbury Society.

The lecture will take place on Monday 3 September from 18.30-19.30 in the Templeman Lecture Theatre and is entitled ‘The Future For Our Towns and Cities’.

Griff Rhys-Jones is well known for his concern about the quality of our towns and cities, particularly historic cities such as Canterbury. In this talk he will share his concerns about the way the planning system has handed control of the way our cities are being developed to the construction industry and what this means for the future of our towns and cities.

No booking is required. Seating is on a first come, first served basis and this lecture is open to students, alumni and the general public.

Christmas at the Pavilion

More tickets released – Kent Sport Christmas Party

Thank you to everyone who has purchased a ticket to Kent Sport’s Christmas at the Pavilion Cafe Bar on Friday 7 December 2018.

We were able to secure 50 more tickets, so if anyone has had any disappointment with purchasing more tickets – now is your chance!

At only £6 per ticket, it promises to be a night filled with incredible music by Project F, delicious food, scrumptious cocktails and entertaining games and competitions. We will also have a raffle to win some pretty awesome prizes with proceeds going towards Mike Wilkins Sports Scholarship Fund.

Click here to get your tickets now!

Let us know you’ll be in attendance by clicking ‘Going’ on our Facebook event.

Traditional Japanese Tea Ceremony

A Taste of Japan – 15 August

Try your hand at Japanese crafts and watch performances during our A Taste of Japan event on Wednesday 15 August from 17.00-18.30 in the Chipperfield Building, Canterbury campus.

The event is hosted and performed by Japanese university students studying on the Centre for English and World Languages’ Short Courses.

Entry is free – just turn up on the day!

For more information, please email or phone 01227 824401.


Workshop exploring policies of inclusion to be held in Brussels

A workshop exploring policies of inclusion, in jurisdictions around the world, will be hosted in Brussels in September by academics from Kent Law School and the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG).

It’s the final workshop for Inclusionary Practices, a three-year research project exploring social and economic inclusion policies in Europe, Latin America and the digital domain. The project, funded by a £26k grant from the British Academy’s International Partnership and Mobility Scheme, is led by Kent Law School Professor Toni Williams (pictured) and Professor Fabricio Polido from the UFMG in Brazil.

The workshop, ‘Constituting Inclusion through Law and Regulation: What do we now know? And where do we go from here?’, will critically examine the methodologies, legal and regulatory techniques and theoretical debates involved in the implementation of social and economic inclusion policies.

Workshop papers will explore how inclusionary practices in different jurisdictions and different social and economic domains make use of particular forms of law and regulation and consider the implications of these differences and particularities for social justice, equalities and diversities and development.  Through systematic and critical analysis and comparison of selected case studies, the workshop seeks to create additional knowledge about the meanings of inclusionary practices in different contexts. It will also consider how and to what effect law and regulation are implicated and instrumentalised to advance policies of inclusion.

Workshop case studies explore the roles of domestic and transnational regulation in respect of social exclusion and inclusionary practices in the fields of housing, security, work, education, finance and digital economies and political engagement.

The workshop will be held at Kent’s Brussels School of International Studies on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 September.


Development Office Beach Clean

The Development Office took part in an environmental leave day on 30 July at Reculver Towers which saw staff from the DO giving back to the local community whilst helping the environment.

Armed with rubbish bags and pickers the staff were able to collect 20 kilos of rubbish and waste with items varying from articles of clothing to shotgun shells.

With the help of Coastal Development Officer, Thomas Hawkins, from Foreshore Services the University were able to learn more about the environmental hazards and problems on our shorelines and were able to start making a difference to the local area.