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Monday, 1 February 2016

Here we are in February already and there is lots of exciting stuff going on at the University of Chester.

Time flies

On January 13th and 14th I attended the Accommodation Fair organised for students by Chester Students’ Union.  I handed out over 350 postcards to students looking for private rented accommodation.  The post card has top tips for living in the community for our students.  It was a really nice opportunity to engage with our students about being responsible residents in Chester.

On 21st January I accompanied a colleague who was giving a talk to the Here and Now group for older residents of Chester.


Dominic Langmead from the Faculty of Science and Engineering gave a lovely talk to the members of the group about the Air Cadets, as he is an officer in the Air Cadets.  Several of the members of the group had been in the forces during World War II and really enjoyed the talk.  Dominic also chatted to the residents about his work at Thornton Science Park and about the outreach work that the Faculty does.
Many thanks Dominic!

Our University and Community Liaison Committee will be meeting in February and the meeting will be treated to a report on my activities since I took up the post of Community Liaison Manager in October. 

The  Committee meets once a term and is made up of various stakeholders, including: Resident Association representatives, Chester and Cheshire West Council Officers, Cheshire Constabulary, Chester Students’ Union representatives and various University staff. 

Last year a member of University staff decided to form a local branch of The Women's Institute, Chester Devas WI.  Chester Devas WI is the local Women's Institute within the Chester area and members of the community are welcome to join.  A member of the WI from the University has very kindly agreed to send through this short blog about the group.

 Chester Devas WI
From a tentative post on the University electronic notice board just over a year ago and an initial meeting of just six, Chester Devas WI has grown to a fully-fledged branch with over 30 attendees at every meeting.

As our motto says, our goal is to ‘Make Friends, Make Stuff, Make Change’. This has been the focus of our monthly meetings where we have formed friendships and learnt a variety of skills from self-defence to paper craft as well as discussing how the branch can make a difference to the lives of others. Rebecca Collins, a Lecturer in Human Geography at Chester and President of Chester Devas WI, and our ever-enthusiastic committee of eight (a mixture of women from inside and outside the University) have, with the invaluable assistance of our WI mentors, established a vibrant, welcoming and active group in a very short time.

2016 looks set to be another busy year with a packed calendar of meetings and social events. Our next meeting will be held on Tuesday 9th February between 7pm and 9pm at the Quaker Meeting House, just off Frodsham Street in the centre of Chester. We will be making t-shirts and banners and flags for our one year anniversary ‘Walk Along the Wall’ event on Sunday 21st February and enjoying the usual tempting selection of refreshments provided by our extremely talented members.

You can find out all about Cheshire Devas WI including information on all of our events and meetings on our facebook page and twitter feed. If you are interested in becoming a member, you are very welcome to join us as a guest up to three times at a cost of just £3 per meeting. For information on becoming a fully paid up WI member, visit the Cheshire Federation website or send an email to  

Did You Know That You Can Use Our Library? 

Members of the public are welcome to come into the Library at Parkgate Road Campus or the Faculty of Health and Social Care Library at our Riverside Campus and refer to the collections for reference

We ask that members of the public report to the Helpdesk where they will be asked to sign the Visitors' Book. Library staff will be pleased to advise and direct them.

Normal library regulations will apply. Journals are not available for loan to any borrower. Photocopying facilities are available from the Helpdesk.

Access to eResources

The University of Chester supports widening access to electronic resources where licensing agreements and University regulations on the use of IT facilities permit.

We provide access for visitors and external users to: the Internet; those electronic information resources we subscribe to which allow walk-in access for visitors; access to standard desktop software and printing facilities charged at the current rate. Use of these facilities must be within the library premises and for educational purposes.

If you have any questions about using the Library as a member of the public please feel free to get in touch on:

Telephone: 01244 511 234


Free Public Events at the University

This month I will be visiting the Faculty of Health and Social Care Riverside Museum on one of their open days to meet with the volunteers who help staff the Museum, many are local residents, and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to talk to local residents about their engagement with the University. 

The Museum is open to all on:

Date:  3 Feb 2016

 Time:  13:00 - 16:00

 and there will also be a public lecture on that date at the Museum:

Scottish Women’s Hospitals: The Nurses of Royaumont in France 1914-1919  

Dr Alison O’Donnell, Honorary Lecturer, University of Dundee, and member of the Royal College of Nursing’s History of Nursing Society’s Steering Committee. 

Date:  3 Feb 2016

Time:  16:00 - 17:30 

Admission is free but booking necessary. 
Please contact Roger Whiteley (, 01244 511619) to confirm your place.

 There is no car parking available at the Riverside Campus (formerly County Hall) and access to the lecture rooms is through the main entrance, opposite the River Dee. The address is: University of Chester, Riverside Campus, Castle Drive, Chester CH1 1SL.
Workshop - Chinese Kun Opera

The University of Chester China Centre is hosting a workshop on the aesthetics of Chinese opera through the story of The Peony Pavilion.  This is open to members of the public.

Wednesday, 17th February, 2016

14:00 - 17:00

The University of Chester China Centre, 3rd Floor, Gateway House, 86 Northgate Street, Chester, CH1 2HT, Entrance opposite Renew theatre. The workshop is to be led by Kathy Hall, founder of the London Kun and Beijing Opera Association. It will introduce Chinese aesthetics, theatre, dance and music.

Attendants will also learn the gestures of Chinese opera and how to put together some key movements to make a short story of your own.

The workshop is FREE.

Booking is essential by emailing 

‘The poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.’
G.K. Chesterton

Are you a poet based in Cheshire?  Would you like to win £2,000? Perhaps you could be the first prize winning Cheshire cheese poet?

This month the University of Chester launches The High Sheriff’s Cheshire Prize for Literature and for 2016 the prize will be for poetry. 


Important Dates

Our Student Development Week takes place in the week beginning 15th February.  We provide our students with careers advice, academic skills help and support with preparation for exams. 

Some of our students also take this opportunity to catch up with academic work at home.



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