Chichester speakers series proves a big success

The list of speakers stretches months into the future for a new and increasingly-popular series launched in Chichester earlier this year by Marilyn Humphrey.

Marilyn and her son Freddie. a key part of the team
Marilyn and her son Freddie. a key part of the team

Talks at Six is a new forum at The Studio, New Park Centre, Chichester, generally three Thursdays a month, where you can enjoy interesting talks on a wide range of subjects in a relaxed atmosphere and engage in active discussion. Admission is free, with donations to the speaker’s chosen charity.

It has got off to an impressive start, as Marilyn explains: “We have had 14 talks so far on a wide variety of subjects from politics to Roman villas. We have averaged 29 in the audience and have raised over £1,280 for different charities. The speakers have all enjoyed giving the talks as the atmosphere is friendly and relaxed with many questions and interaction, maybe helped by a taster of wine provided by us!”

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Part of the reason for its success is its in-between time, starting at 6pm and so allowing people plenty of time to go on to other things later in the evening. But the main reason for its success so far, Marilyn believes, is the sheer wealth of information the series is pouring out.

“As far as I am concerned, the whole thing is just incredibly-good fun. That’s the reason I am doing it. I am having a ball. I thoroughly enjoy meeting the speakers and hearing what they have to say, and it is lovely to have an audience thoroughly enjoying themselves, and at the same time making a lot of money for charity. It has been great.

“To start with, I relied quite a lot on friends and people I know to support it, but every time they come, a speaker brings his own audience. I have been surprised that the speakers have been so lovely and so willing. And every time, you always find out something you didn’t know. I am trying to keep it very much local interest at the moment. If we had people from outside the area, it would be more difficult. The talk on the A27 was very well attended, and the Brexit one was overwhelmingly well attended. It was a very good debate and all very well mannered!”

Finding the speakers has proved straightforward: “And I love it now when somebody asks me if they can do a talk – or if somebody suggests a subject and then I have to go off and find somebody to talk about it.”

The talks are Thursdays at 6pm; talk 6.15-6.45pm; discussion after. Drop in or reserve a seat. Call: 07960 346922 or book a place on Marilyn estimates that roughly half the audience book in advance: “But I do really love people to drop in. That’s terrific when they do.”

Talks coming up include: Sept 8 – Mary Rose – Trevor Sapey; Sept 15 – Artist of South Downs, Richard Whincop, ideas and inspiration; Sept 29 – Shakespeare celebrated – Duncan Salkeld, 40 things about the Bard; Oct 6 – Hospice Care in Sussex – Kathy Gore; Oct 13 – Farming – John Pitts; Oct 20 – Cook Shop Christmas – Richard Simpson, entertaining ideas; Nov 3 – Tinwood Wines – Art Tukker, tastings; Nov 10 – Jazz Club – Hugh Ashton; Nov 17 – Art of Magic – Charlie, children’s entertainer; Dec 1 – Syrian Refugees – Children on the Edge/Jonathan Brown; Jan 12 – Fitness/Territorial Arm – Lee Strange, personal trainer; Jan 19 – Juice it! – Denise Kelly, healthier ways to live; Feb 2 – Hired: The Apprentice – Donna Carr, Chichester College; Feb 9 – Love Where u Live – Vicki Meddows-Smith; Feb 16 – Liz Walker – a view on the collectors;.

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