Saturday, 4 June 2011

WEA North East centenary summer school


Friday8-Sunday 10 July
The Workers' Educational Association North East Region is celebrating 100 years of providing adult learning in our region. As part of our Centenary celebrations we will be holding a very special weekend residential Summer School this July to coincide with the 2011 Durham Miners’ Gala at the beautiful College of St Hild and St Bede, Durham. Join us for three days of fun, friendship and learning!

The sessions will be interesting and enjoyable in themselves, but there is even more to this attractively priced weekend!

The summer school also includes an opportunity to take part in the historic 127th Durham Miners' Gala at which we will be unveiling the WEA North East Region's new Centenary banner. The Gala involves a huge procession with banners and bands through the centre of Durham City, leading to the Big Meeting on a nearby field with tens of thousands of people from all over Britain and the world.

There will be speakers galore from the trade union and other movements, and for the first time in many years, the Leader of the Labour Party will also be addressing the crowd.

The Big Meeting has its other features as well - a famous tea tent, union and Co-op displays, more of the bands, and a huge marquee in which you can find historical and other stalls, and not least the annual WEA stall where we launch our courses brochure for the coming year!

Every year, the Gala grows in size and variety. Although the pits have closed, the traditions of the mining villages bring about the yearly parading of former Lodge banners, and many local schools in County Durham have now made their own banners for the Gala. A video of the 2010 Gala can be found on the Guardian website (there's a slightly tedious wait before the introductory advert finishes!):

So, one of the sidelights of the Centenary summer school is that you get to stay in accommodation right in the centre of Durham City at a very reasonable price and within easy reach of other sights such as Durham Cathedral.

We would like to invite WEA friends from all over the country to join us for the weekend.   For more information contact: WEA Regional Office, Joseph Cowen House, 21 Portland Terrace, Jesmond,
            Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 1QQ. Telephone: 0191 212 6100 or email:

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