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For this year’s Forum we bring you four events focusing on the way we produce, supply and regulate the food we eat, and finish with a debate about the future for our energy production. Full Day ticket allows entry to all five sessions: , , ,  and .
Global meat consumption is on an unhealthy trajectory. Short of cutting meat out of our diet entirely, from mega-farms to self-sufficiency, chicken sheds to free-range and organic, we discuss the options available and their pros and cons. And then of course there are the edible insects…The BBC Food Programme presenter Dan Saladino talks with Louise Gray, author of The Ethical Carnivore, Joanna Blythman from the Sustainable Food Trust and author of Swallow This and farmer Peter Greig, former Food Producer of the Year in Radio 4's Food and Farming Awards.
Culture-grown lab meat is becoming big business. It can be taking a few animal cells, feeding them nutrients, growing them in to meat and allowing them to self-renew indefinitely; or taking the fish out of fishing by helping fish cells to multiply in a brewery-like environment to create fish fillets. The benefits could be huge, not only in removing the need to kill animals but also in the reduction of methane production and water use. However, it raises lots of potential ethical concerns too. To discuss the benefits and drawbacks, Dan Crossley, Executive Director at the Food Ethics Council, farmer Illtud Llyr Dunsford, Marianne Ellis, Senior Lecturer in Biochemical Engineering in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Bath University and Alexandra Sexton, researcher at Wellcome Trust "Livestock, Environment, People' project, talk to Andy Fryers, Sustainability Director at Hay Festival.
A new future beckons for the British countryside, with the spotlight on achieving a ‘Green Brexit’ threatening to steal the limelight over food production in the UK. As we adjust to life outside the European Union, will we need to increase imports of groceries? Will we need to implement regulation-lite policies, while delivering a smarter way to feed ourselves and look after the environment? Minette Batters, elected in 2018, is the first female NFU President in its 110-year history. She talks to rural commentator Rob Yorke.
Join us in this uplifting schools choir event. Choir leader Fiona Evans has been working with hundreds of local primary school pupils to create this fantastic concert where the children invite you to Imagine the World through song.
‘Small is beautiful’ was the rallying cry of the early environmental movement, whilst cynics dismissed it as a lot of hippy dreaming. Now small, it seems, is back and going Big. Small scale renewable energy technologies like solar and wind, along with the huge progress in battery storage, are now fast becoming some of the cheapest sources of electricity on the planet. How long before every home becomes its own power plant, every home owner their own power company? And how long before local green energy sources combine with digital technologies and 3-D printing to revive local manufacturing? Can small really stay beautiful, or will big prove to be best? Chaired by Writer and Green Futurist, Martin Wright.
From planetary exploration and micro-sensors to tropical disease and psychosis, two Royal Society Research Fellows discuss their work at the forefront of science. Lowe’s research at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine involves understanding how environmental and socio-economic factors interact to determine the risk of disease transmission. Modinos’ work at King’s College London attempts to understand the neural mechanisms of emotion and stress response in schizophrenia. Chaired by Hannah Critchlow.
To mark the centenary of women in Britain first getting the vote, the women’s rights campaigner and great-granddaughter of suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst charts how women’s lives have changed over the past century and offers a powerful and positive argument for the way forward.
We have been repeatedly told that the UK will be looking to create new free-trade partnerships following Brexit, above all with the 'Anglosphere'. Why then do we need to study or learn other languages? Everyone speaks English. This session will unpack some of the monolingual attitudes that sit behind such views and ask participants to think about the role of languages and language learning for Britain's relationships with a brave new world post-Brexit. #unpack
If we want a world that is beautiful, kind and fair, shouldn’t our activism be beautiful, kind and fair? The campaigner and founder of the global Craftivist Collective shows how to respond to injustice not with apathy or aggression, but with gentle, effective protest. With thoughtful principles, practical examples and honest stories from her own experience as a once burnt-out activist, Corbett shows how activism through craft can produce long-lasting positive change.
The Ice King is an extraordinary portrait of the figure skater John Curry who was the first openly gay Olympian at a time when homosexuality was barely legal. The film charts the rise and fall of this forgotten cultural icon whose story encapsulates art, sport, sexuality and rebellion. Including unseen footage of some of his most remarkable performances; access to Curry’s letters, archives and interviews with family, friends and collaborators, this is a portrait of the man who turned ice skating from a dated sport into an exalted art form. Introduced by the director, James Erskine. Followed by Q&A.
A message from the Finnish embassy launches Horatio Clare on a voyage around an extraordinary country and an unearthly place, the frozen Bay of Bothnia, just short of the Arctic Circle. Finland is an enigmatic place, famous for its educational miracle, healthcare and gender equality – as well as Nokia, Angry Birds, saunas, questionable cuisine and deep taciturnity. Aboard the icebreaker Otso Clare gets to know the crew, and explores Finland’s history and character. His most recent books include Down to the Sea in Ships and Myths and Legends of the Brecon Beacons. Chaired by Peter Florence.
The UK voted to leave at the peak of its economic inequality. In hindsight this appears to have influenced the decision. Many British citizens are likely to be impoverished as a result. Those without citizenship already live in great fear. So, can we actually afford to walk out on this relationship? Dorling is Professor of Geography at the University of Oxford. His books include Why Demography Matters, Inequality and the 1% and Population 10 Billion. Chaired by Tom Clark of Prospect magazine.
How does automatic translation work and will machines ever be able to replace a ‘human’ translator? A panel of experts from University of Cambridge discuss latest developments. Sanson is a Reader in Italian Language, Literature and Culture, Byrne is Professor of Information Engineering and Tomalin is Research Associate in the Speech Research Group of the University Engineering Department.
Up Top was the name given locally to the Mid Wales Mental Hospital above Talgarth; a double meaning like 'round the bend', which often located asylums elsewhere – out of sight and out of mind. Purcell’s hitherto untold history, based on archives and oral testimony from staff and patients, shows how mentally ill people were treated through the 20th century. At first the ‘lunatic asylums’ relied on a strict regime of fresh air and bromide. Then they became ‘mental hospitals’, trying desperate measures like leucotomy, deep sleep narcosis and electro convulsive therapy. Then the word ‘mental’ was dropped and ‘psychiatric hospitals’ moved into the era of heavy drugs and psychotherapy. Finally, community care took over. The history of the Mid Wales’ was typical of many institutions that lie as ruined monuments to our attempts to help the mentally ill.
Webb has been a male for his whole life. As such, he has been a boy in a world of fighting, pointless posturing, and the insistence that he stop crying. As an adult man, he has enjoyed better luck, both in his work as the Webb half of Mitchell & Webb as an acclaimed actor and comedian, and as author of this part memoir, part call to arms.