Brad relates a career in comedy writing and working with famous comedians.

Dr Khamael Al-Faris has a PhD in Criminology and Criminal Justice from Plymouth University and is currently co-ordinating the Scams Prevention Service in Norfolk Constabulary.

The talk will take in the history of the musical from 1927 to the present-day including Showboat, Oklahoma, Guys and Dolls and many more

The talk is being given by Dr Ian Bedford, an entomologist based in Norwich.

Mention wasps and most of us think of an annoying, angry yellow and black striped flying insect that delivers a painful sting when confronted.  However, there's around 9000 different wasp species in Britain and their value to us is immense. We'd certainly have a lot of problems without them. This talk explains why. Dr Bedford ran the Entomology Department at the John Innes Centre in Norwich until he retired and now works as an independent consultant entomologist offering advice on safer plant protection products, and he promotes wildlife friendly home gardening. He is also a well known speaker to Garden Clubs, Horticultural Societies and National Garden Shows, and has appeared on TV and Radio, in Gardening and News programmes, and even in Harry Hill's Alien Fun Capsule when "Killer Slugs Returned to Norwich"

Trailblazer: Memoirs of the first female firefighter in England

Hailed as the first full time female firefighter in the UK, Britain, Jo Reynolds joined Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service in 1982 at just 17. She was determined never to be the weakest link. Using that determination and inner strength to overcome prejudice, she proved that women could make great firefighters.

Free spirited and adventurous she left the fire brigade  after 7 years to work on expeditions in the most remote regions of the globe. This nomadic lifestyle suited her, and meant that she found ways to follow her heart, and live a life that is true to her. She is now an entrepreneur and motivational speaker.

Josephine’s talk, drawn from her published memoir, Fire Woman: The Extraordinary Story of Britain’s First Female Firefighter,  will give us a glimpse of her triumphs and crushing defeats, from the daily post-training vomiting sessions brought on by fatigue and the feelings of loneliness as the only woman in the position, to the emotional strain of responding to horrific road accidents and suicides, to the powerful camaraderie she gained among the members of her squad.

Trailblazer - Memoirs of the first female firefighter in England

Josephine Reynolds

Jo’s talk began at the very beginning with her early life and how Jo came to be in Norfolk from living in West Wales following her parents’ divorce and how her early work experiences led to the decision to apply to become the first full time female firefighter.  Jo described how the strenuous selection process included hanging from the top of a ladder to check for fear of heights and crawling through obstacles in an unlit room to test for claustrophobia. 

Chris Forse is a former Hong Kong resident who has travelled extensively in China since 1978 and portrays a fascinating pictorial story of its transformation based on his personal experience.  This is our first use of the Mirthy platform to access recorded talks.

Local resident Nigel Redman is a leading figure in the world of Birds and Natural History guiding 140 tours in 90 countries around the world. Co-author of Where to watch birds in Britain and author of Birds of the Horn of Africa he guides us round this fascinating region visiting well-trodden sites in Ethiopia as well as the less well-known countries of Eritrea, Djibouti and Somaliland.

Tulip Mania

Charles Lewis, former curator of Great Yarmouth Museum, has become a regular speaker and is always entertaining and informative. In the 17th century, tulips became a coveted luxury item. The market in tulips became fierce and at the height of tulip mania some single bulbs sold for more than ten times the income of a skilled worker. Eventually and inevitably the market crashed. Charles will tell us how tulip mania came about and its consequences.

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Waste is not a rubbish subject

Dr. Liz Goodwin OBE has spent the last 20 years of her life as a scientist and CEO of WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme) working on the subject of waste and its impact on the sustainability of our lives and the planet. On 20 January, she gave us a fascinating talk about our waste, what happens to it, how much progress is being made in reducing it and treating it as a resource. Liz is clearly used to talking to Ministers, Chief Executives of Supermarkets, Food producers and Local Authority officials so there were plenty of facts to illustrate her points, but her analysis was down to earth and relevant to all of us.