We wish all our members, friends and visitors a Happy New Year


The Swansea Branch’s

Outclass Courses








The Normans in Europe: A Story of Dukes and Kings

Colin Wheldon James & Peter Rees

Monday mornings from 8 January 2018 at Canolfan y Bont, Pontardulais

This course will form an introduction to the Normans, whose impact on medieval Europe was influential and extensive. It will trace the founding of the duchy of Normandy early in the tenth century, and will consider the Norman character through warfare, intellect and culture. It will consider the cause of the Norman invasion of England, having regard to the main characters involved, and the consequences of the Norman Conquest, including William the Conqueror’s consolidation of power following his victory, and how the Normans changed the cultural and administrative identity of the country. Also examined will be the Norman identity in southern Europe with particular reference to the challenge to the might of both Byzantium and Islam, culminating in the establishment of the kingdom of Sicily. Consideration will be given to the character of the Kingdom of Sicily and southern Italy after the conquest by the Normans, including the metamorphosis of the Byzantine and Islamic cultures involved.


The 1960s: Revolution! 

Dr Anthea Symonds

Monday afternoons from 8 January at the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea

In Britain and Europe a new spirit of change and questioning led many to espouse revolutionary ideas of social, cultural and political change. From the Beatles to the Paris uprisings, from the Freedom Rides in America to revolution in Cuba, new heroes emerged. But this cultural and social upheaval in social class, racial identity, post-colonialism, which found expression through popular music, cinema, theatre also raised opposition and fear.

A History of Llangyfelach Parish from Antiquity to Modern Times

Jeff Childs

Tuesday mornings from 9 January 2018 at Morriston Library

This course will examine key aspects of the ecclesiastical parish of Llangyfelach’s rich history from antiquity to modern times.


Radical Change: Art and Artists in Wales and England, 1870s–1950s

Richard Lewis

Tuesday afternoons from 9 January 2018 at the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea

This course will appraise the changing movements in art in Wales and England in the late-19th and early-20th centuries, together with a study of the artists that spurred these radical changes forward. It is hoped that some visits to the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery can be arranged as well as a visit to the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff.


The Rise and Fall of Liberal Government in the UK, 1860s–1920s

Richard Lewis

Wednesday evenings at Forge Fach Community Centre, Clydach

This course will examine a period of dramatic, far reaching change. This was the age of colourful figures such as Gladstone, Disraeli, Joe Chamberlain, Emmeline Pankhurst, Parnell, Salisbury, Balfour, Kier Hardie, Ramsay MacDonald, Randolph Churchill, Asquith, Lloyd George and many more. This era saw vital developments in this country’s evolution.