Annual Report for 2016/17

As the Treasurer reported, our balance has again risen during the year, and we are once more in a secure financial position, having recovered from a poor year a couple of years ago. This is despite a drop in membership, as the figures in the accounts indicate, from 67 to 56 paying members, all at the full 5, (itself an increase of 13 over the previous year.) We have a few memberships unpaid at year end however, which I have good reason to believe may be renewed in the current year, although sadly one loss was through the death of our long standing member, and regular dinner companion, Francis Celoria, in late April, at the age of 91. He will be much missed. We were also successful this year in maintaining the higher attendances reported in the last two years, and in continuing to attract engaging and interesting speakers.

In the Autumn we opened in late October with a lecture at Keele by Peter Brown (Oxford) on The Origins of the European Comic Tradition (attendance 16), for the Roman Society joint meeting. This was followed by return visit by John Prag (Manchester) to speak on How to Look at a Greek Vase at St Wulstan's School (attendance 21) and a reading of Book XII of the Aeneid at Keele (attendance 6).

We resumed in February on our traditional Shrove Tuesday, with a reading of Ovid's Metamorphoses Book III at our Chairman's house (attendance only 4), and then a Play reading of Euripides' Iphigeneia in Tauris (attendance 11, keeping up the higher numbers for play readings). Paul Millett (Cambridge) then lectured on Winston Churchill and the Classics at Keele (attendance 25, Hellenic Society joint meeting.) Finally in the lecture programme, David Langslow (Manchester) returned to speak on The Development of Writing & the Alphabet in the Roman World (attendance 35).

We are grateful to the school and to Keele SCR for free use of the rooms for these meetings.

Our annual trip, in May, was as usual open to other bodies and was to Cirencester and Chedworth Roman Villa (attendance 36), with a concluding meal in Tewkesbury. We are grateful as ever to Andy Fear for leading us round both the Corinium Museum and the Villa and Deerhurst Saxon Church sites.

The Latin and Greek reading groups have continued successfully to run approximately monthly throughout the year, independently of the core programme, as has the Beginners Latin Group, thanks to Nigel Coulton (Latin) and Monica Swinburne (Greek).

Sadly this was our last AGM at this house, due to our Chairman's impending move to a new Parish in Lichfield. Both Fr Anthony Dykes, who remains on the Committee, and the outgoing Treasurer, Richard Wallace, were thanked for their sterling services to the Branch over many years.

Events 2016/2017

LECTURE: Mr Peter Brown (University of Oxford)

7.30 pm, Tuesday 18 October 2016
Senior Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG
Joint meeting with the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies

LECTURE: Professor John Prag (University of Manchester)

7.30 p.m., Tuesday 1 November 2016
St Wulstans's (RC) Primary School, Church Lane, Wolstanton, ST5 0EF

READING: (in English translation) of Aeneid Book XII

7.30 p.m., Thursday 17 November 2016
SCR, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG

Texts will be available, but please bring the Penguin Classics translation, if you are able.

READING: (in English translation) of Ovid: Metamorphoses Book III

7.30 p.m., Tuesday 28 February 2017
Priest's House, St Wulstan's, Church Lane, Wolstanton, Newcastle, ST5 0EF

Please bring any translation you may have.

PLAY READING: (in English translation) of Euripides' Iphigeneia in Tauris

7.30 p.m., Thursday 16 March 2017
SCR Bar, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG

      Roman Theatre, Orange,  Stephen Clifford, June 2004 The Roman Theatre at Orange.

Copies will be available, but please bring the Penguin Classics edition, if you are able.

LECTURE: Dr Paul Millett (University of Cambridge)

7.30 p.m., Thursday 6 April 2017
Senior Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG
Joint meeting with the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies

LECTURE: Professor David Langslow (University of Manchester)

7.30 pm, Tuesday 2 May 2017
Senior Common Room, Keele Hall, University of Keele, ST5 5BG


ANNUAL COACH TRIP, Saturday 20 May 2017:

Cirencester Roman Museum & Chedworth Roman Villa, led by Dr Andy Fear, Chedworth being subject to access. The coach will leave Keele at 8.30 a.m., and stop for an evening meal in Tewkesbury. There is a charge for this event expected to be about 25.

      Roman Mosaic, Cirencester,  Andrew Fear, March 2005 Mosaic floor with image of Hare.

The booking form can be downloaded here. Bookings now closed.

Annual General Meeting

The AGM of the Branch will take place on Thursday 22 June 2017, at 7.30 pm, at the Priest's House, Wolstanton. This event is for members only.

Latin and Greek Reading Groups 2016/17

The Latin and Greek reading groups continue to meet approximately monthly, in the morning, independently of the general programme, for those who wish to read ancient (and medieval Latin) literature in the original, and to work together on deciphering the meaning, in a relaxed atmosphere. These groups are not for beginners, but thanks to Nigel Coulton a Beginners Latin from Scratch weekly Group is also now available, strictly limited to 5 members. This group began its course on Tuesday mornings in March 2016.

Last year's programme and Annual Report

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