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British Deaf Association premiere lost film footage in ground-breaking documentary – ‘Power in Our Hands’

Power in our Hands’ is a compilation of historical archive footage of the Deaf community. The idea for the film began in 2004 when, in an exciting twist of fate, a group of builders accidently stumbled across the long-lost film from the BDA, dating back to the 1930s.

The forgotten footage has now been compiled into a documentary (lasting 70 minutes) with its narrative being the recognition of British Sign Language (BSL) and Deaf rights. Unlike the Civil Rights movements of other minority groups, this isn’t a topic that is well-known in the hearing community and the footage gives a fascinating insight into what the Deaf community has had to go through in their struggle for equality.

To see more information please go to the BDA website by clicking the link below:


The film premiered at BFI Southbank on 11 November 2015 with a large number of people from the Deaf community in attendance and the public screenings will take place in cinemas across the UK from February 2016.

There will be a showing of this at Broadway Cinema Sunday 28th Feb

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Nottinghamshire Deaf Society ‘Hearing Deaf Voices’ Project secures Heritage Lottery Fund support

Nottinghamshire Deaf Society (NDS) is today announcing the launch of an exciting new project as the culmination of its 125th anniversary celebrations. The Nottingham-based charity has received £60,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund for the ‘Hearing Deaf Voices’ project to celebrate the rich cultural history of deaf people from across the city and county.

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Walking Hadrian’s Wall

Walking Hadrian’s Wall                                               125 logo


I had the chance to walk along Hadrian’s Wall eight years ago when Stewart Simpson, retire Chief Executive of CACDP invited me – but I was already booked for a holiday.  Eight months ago John, a fellow walk leader for “Walking for Health,” asked me to join him.  We both wanted to fundraise but were afraid of asking for sponsorship – as at 68 we have weak knees and ankles.


Now we’ve achieved the walk please make it more memorable by donating to the NDS’ “125 year fundraising appeal”.


We started on the west coast at Bowness of Solway and walked 16 miles into Carlisle.  I met Philip and Jane Kilgour for an evening meal and to reminisce – as Philip was Chief Executive of Leicester Deaf Society at a similar time I was with Nottinghamshire Deaf Society.


Second day we set off at 9am and walked until 4pm.  Sadly it was windy and wet although it was the middle of June!  Luckily the wind was mainly westerly – so behind us.  It rained 6 out of 7 days so we had to wear waterproofs and dry our boots etc. every night.  The other weather problem was the mist which spoilt the tremendous views from the top of the crags, as I imagine you could normally see 30 miles in all directions.


Each day we would stop to talk to people we passed.  The questions were always the same – “where did you start from today?  What is it like?  Where is your home?”


We met people from all over UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, USA and Canada.  One day I counted that we spoke to 55 people and one was a Deaf Sign Language user.  I noted he had 2 hearing aids and although he was walking with 2 other people he did not join in with the conversation.  I soon put a smile on his face when I signed to him.


We stayed each night in a different B& B and having so much fresh air and pub dinners (with a few beers) we were going to bed fairly early.  In the morning we would have enormous full English breakfasts.  Yet, even with all the exercise I put on half a stone in weight.


The most impressive aspects of the Wall was the design, thought, and strength to build 84 miles – mostly 9 feet wide and high over an undulating height of 1,132 feet with 16 forts, 80 mile castles and 158 turrets.


We were so pleased to arrive at Wallsend and especially on a dry day, our first one in seven days.  We were also pleased to be able to use our ‘Bus Passes’ to go back to our car at Bowness.  It was a long tiring journey, but a worthwhile achievement.


Please give generously to the ‘NDS 125 Campaign.’ I can associate with the last 40 years, as I joined the NDS on the 1st of August 1975.


*Currently, £240 has been donated to the NDS 125 Campaign as a result of this fundraising effort.

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