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Institute of Continuing Education (ICE)


2023-24 Weekend Courses - Bookings now open!

We're delighted to announce that bookings are now open for our 2023-24 Weekend Courses. With both residential and non-residential places available, these courses offer the opportunity to learn from some of our finest academics in the inspirational setting of Madingley Hall. Over the course of each weekend there will be plenty of opportunity to get to know your tutor and fellow students, take part in lively classroom discussion and explore the beautiful landscaped gardens.

Course delivery and format

All courses follow a similar format: seven 1.5hr sessions delivered between Friday evening and Sunday lunchtime. The courses begin with dinner on Friday evening, followed by the first session. There are four sessions on Saturday: two before lunch, and one before and after dinner. There’s a break on Saturday afternoon just after lunch, offering time to rest, read, or explore Madingley’s beautiful grounds. The final two sessions take place on Sunday morning, and the course finishes with lunch. 

Stay at Madingley Hall

Our Weekend Courses take place in the beautiful setting of Madingley Hall, where you can book accommodation in comfortably furnished rooms with pleasant views over the woods, gardens and courtyard. Each en suite room has internet access, digital television, a direct-dial telephone, as well as tea- and coffee-making facilities. Non-residential course places are also available. As a student on our Weekend Courses you will enjoy award-winning cuisine in our elegant Dining Hall.    

Who can attend?

Designed for personal interest and professional development, our weekend courses are open to anyone over the age of 18. Although they are taught at approximately first-year undergraduate level, no academic qualifications are required and most courses are suitable for students who are new to the subject.

2023-24 Weekend Courses

27-29 October 2023

The Literary Gothic - Dr Jenny Bavidge
From Baroque to Romanticism: the operas of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Dr Robert Letellier
Minds, machines and butterfly wings: the catalysts and consequences of the Industrial Revolution - Dr Graham McCann

3-5 November 2023

Virginia Woolf’s early fiction: The Voyage Out and Night and Day - Dr Claire Nicholson
The basics of starting a business - Andrew Hatcher
The art of innovation: Impressionism and Post-Impressionism - Jo Rhymer
AI and society - Dr Jonnie Penn

17-19 November 2023

France under the Occupation - Dr Seán Lang
Plant hunters - the quest for the world’s edible and exotic plants - Caroline Holmes
The view from both sides: propaganda films and World War II - Dr Colin Shindler
Foundations of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam - Dr Karim Esmail

1-3 December 2023

Moonlight on Stonehenge and other stone circles - Professor David Jacques
Lesser-known stories of the Special Operations Executive - Dr Peter Dixon
World Order under stress - Sir Tony Brenton
Yes, you can write: an introduction to creative writing - Derek Niemann & Elizabeth Speller

26-28 January 2024

Fairy tales past and present - Dr Jenny Bavidge
The World of Verismo, and the Genius of Giacomo Puccini - Dr Robert Letellier
Reading Classical Greek: Thucydides The Peloponnesian War Book 7, chapters 42-48, 59-75 and 84-87 - Dr John Taylor

9-11 February 2024

From Swift to Spitting Image: 300 years of British politicial humour - Dr Graham McCann
All smiles: discovering Dante’s Purgatorio - Dr Scott Annett
Seven Cambridge Nobel Prizes - Dr Vasos Pavlika
Philosophy as therapy: from good counsel to consolations - Dr Alex Carter

23-25 February 2024

Palaeography for local and family historians: reading 16th- and 17th-century handwriting - Dr Heather Falvey 
The Making of the Modern Middle East - Rupert Wallace
The pillars of business success: the essential elements - Ken Dickson
The British Empire in two World Wars - Dr Seán Lang

8-10 March 2024

International Development: past, present, and future - Dr Calum Nicholson 
Tudor art and its setting - Dr Christina Faraday
Telling your family story – learn how to write of the past with flair and verve - Derek Niemann & Elizabeth Speller 

26-28 April 2024

Defending Scotland - Dr James Petre
Creativity in business: putting theory into practice - Dr Alex Carter
If these halls could talk: an introduction to writing historical fiction - Dr Yvonne Battle-Felton 
The role of beauty in scientific practice - Dr Milena Ivanova

17-19 May 2024

The catastrophic 14th century - Professor Mark Bailey
An introduction to the theory and practice of archaeology and fieldwork - Professor Stephen Upex
The Golden Age of Elizabethan music and culture - Dr Francis Knights
Moby Dick an introduction to a great American novel - Dr Andy Wimbush

7-9 June 2024

Reading Classical Greek: Homer Iliad Book 6 - Dr Janet Watson
‘The melody of letters’:  reading literature as a musical exercise - Polly Paulusma
The Renaissance world in seven Italian cities - Dr Sarah Pearson
Fossils and the history of life - Dr Peter Sheldon

12-14 July 2024

Creative editing: how to revise your manuscript - Dr Joseph Reed
From violent Expressionism to Neo-Romantic sunset: the operas of Richard Strauss - Dr Robert Letellier 
Closing the health/wealth gap? An introduction to the sociology of health and illness - Dr Nigel Kettley
Love and war: readings from Rome in the 50s BC - Dr Charlie Weiss

16-18 August 2024

Unexpected pasts: ancient discoveries that should not exist - Dr Matthew Symonds
Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution - Dr David Smith
The essentials of astronomy - Dr Matthew Bothwell
An introduction to mental health conditions and clinical disorders - Dr John Lawson

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