2017

Series 10: Saturdays in 2017   11.00am – 12.30pm
The Hexham Debates seek to carry on the tradition of active, radical debate essential for ensuring freedom and justice for all. We hope that the programme will demonstrate ways in which a government’s power depends for its legitimacy on the consent of its citizens – and perhaps reveal how far we have moved away from that ideal.  

Saturday 14th January 2017
‘Protecting cultural heritage during armed conflict’
Prof Peter Stone
 UNESCO Chair of Cultural Property Protection & Peace at Newcastle University
It’s war: people get killed and things get damaged and destroyed. There’s nothing you can do about it.” Is this really true? Should we even think about protecting old things when people’s lives are at stake? Is the protection of cultural heritage important? And if so, what can be done during conflict? This lecture will address these and other issues relating to the protection of cultural heritage during armed conflict. Click here to watch the Video

Saturday 11th February 2017
‘The Nuclear Ban Treaty – will it make a difference?’
Timmon Wallis Programme manager in peace and disarmament for Quaker Peace & Social Witness
The nine nuclear states continue to insist that nuclear weapons are ‘essential’ for their security. The 186 states which do not have them (and have promised never to obtain them) are now committed to negotiating a new international treaty that will ban nuclear weapons. Is this the beginning of the end for them, or will it make no difference? Click here to watch the video

Saturday 18th March 2017
‘Working for racial and religious harmony in the North East’
Hari Shukla

Chairman of the North East Centre for Transformative Education and Research
A multi-faith community is an asset and not a liability. Drawing on his experience as Newcastle’s Director of the Racial Equality Council, Dr Shukla will describe some of his many successes in promoting understanding and respect between the 142 nationalities in the city and show how, since the EU referendum, the community is facing the challenge of increased racial harassment.

Saturday 22nd April 2017
‘The UK and Saudi Arabia: fuelling war and repression’
Ann Feltham
Parliamentary Co-ordinator, Campaign Against Arms Trade
Saudi Arabia is the UK’s biggest arms customer and most shameful relationship. One of the world’s most authoritarian regimes, its repression at home and aggression abroad is propped up and facilitated by UK arms sales. The UK has continued to sell arms to Saudi and to support air strikes in Yemen, despite strong evidence that war crimes may have been committed.

Saturday 6th May 2017
‘How to turn your child into a killer’
John Bourton & Daniel Lenham
Veterans For Peace UK
Veterans For Peace UK is a voluntary organisation of ex-services men and women who collectively have served in every war that Britain has fought since WW2. Through their work they aim to educate young people about the true nature of military service and war, to resist war and militarism through non-violent action and to stand in solidarity with people resisting militarism and war. Veterans for Peace hope to convince people that war is not the solution to the problems of the 21st century.

Saturday June 10th 2017
‘Prospects for a more peaceful world’
Paul Rogers
Professor, Bradford University Department of Peace Studies
While we face huge problems – the widening wealth-poverty divide, climate disruption and the mistaken belief that we can maintain control through war – there is also no lack of new ideas, positive thinking and action. Can we use the many opportunities we have before us to work for a more peaceful world, is there time to do it and how do we best go about it as individuals, communities and even countries?

Saturday 8th July 2017
‘Prison Reform’
Guy Opperman
MP for Hexham Constituency
The public does not want custody to be soft, but if prisons fail to change offenders’ behaviour, they become a short term fix and not a long term solution. Successful rehabilitation is highly unlikely when offenders are released with no basic skills, poor levels of literacy, often addicted to drugs and with little work experience. Guy will show what went wrong with prison regimes in the past, make suggestions for future policies and assess how things are changing.

Unless indicated otherwise the debates take place at 11.00am – 12.30pm 

in
St Mary’s Centre
St Mary’s RC Church
Hencotes
Hexham
NE46 2EB

Chair: Gillian Orrell

Admission Free – Retiring Collection
Sponsored by Northumbrians for Peace and  Hexham Quaker Meeting