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About Kent Humanists

Kent Humanists meet on the third Sunday of each month at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB. Our meetings are open to anyone interested in Humanism and are not restricted to members, we ask only for a nominal £2.00 contribution towards the hire of the hall.

You can become a full member of Kent Humanists for an annual subscription of £15.00 or £10.00 if you are a member of the national organisation Humanists UK. Students who take advantage of Humanists UK free subscription scheme may also join Kent Humanists for free. Please email for further details.

The 2018 Committee are:

Peter Morgan - Chair

Richard Norman - Joint Secretary

Steve Bowen - Joint Secretary

Wendy Rumsey - Treasurer

Leigh Derbyshire, Martin Nunn, Val Dunhill, Glynis Rollings.

Our Charity of the year 2017-2018

At each AGM Kent Humanists choose a charity to support for the year. This year's charity is The Alkham Valley Community Project and Therapeutic Riding Centre Mount Ararat, Abbey Road, Hougham, Dover CT15 7DJ and there is an opportunity to donate at our monthly meetings.

The Alkham Valley Community Project and Therapeutic Riding Centre is a registered charity providing: a) Therapeutic activities for disabled and disadvantaged adults and children to promote their health and wellbeing. b) Community participation in healthy recreation by the provision of facilities to learn skills related to horse riding, carriage driving and horticulture. c) Promoting the objects of the Riding for the Disabled Association including carriage driving (charity number 244108) Activity sessions run from a 40 acre site in the Alkham Valley between Folkestone and Dover in Kent. The trustees of the AVCP follow the philosophy that being out in the countryside, enjoying nature, taking part in sport, being active, exercising, learning and achieving is beneficial to all.

Our program for 2018

Understanding Unbelief: A talk by Lois Lee

Sunday 20 May 2018, 2:30pm–4:30pm

at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB.

Understanding Unbelief is a major new research programme, based at the University of Kent, aiming to advance the scientific understanding of atheism and other forms of so-called ‘unbelief’ around the world. Its central research questions concern the nature and diversity of ‘unbelief’. Lois Lee is the Programme Leader.

Brush Up Your Brexit: Examining the Political and Social Consequences of Brexit

Sunday 17th June 2018, 2:30PM - 4:30PM

at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB.

The presentation by Dr Hadfield will first review the main political developments between the UK government and the EU, looking at the key agreements of late 2017 and those emerging during Spring 2018. She will then examine broader issues regarding the social impact of Brexit on key sectors like healthcare and higher education, as well as the knock-on effect for regions like the Southeast of England, counties like Kent, and finally the impact on local government and citizens.

The Big Change in Religion and Belief - How might a Humanist respond? A talk by Jeremy Rodell- (Rescheduled from February)

Sunday 15th July 2018, 2:30pm–4:30pm

at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB.

Britain is currently going through what’s been called the biggest change in religion and belief landscape since the Reformation, 500 years ago. But what's really going on? What are the facts? And what are the practical implications? Can the non-religious help make it work?
Jeremy Rodell is co-founder and chair of SW London Humanists, a Trustee of Humanists UK and its Dialogue Officer.

Summer Social

Sunday 19th August 2018, 12:30pm to whenever

at 138 St Stephen's Road, Canterbury, CT2 7JS

An Invitation From Leigh: - "Absolutely EVERYONE is welcome and I will also invite a few of my Humanist friends who don't come to meetings but follow us. PLEASE, PLEASE feel free to bring a friend too. It's often really nice to meet a new group socially rather than walk into the anonymity of the church hall. I will provide bread, crisps, tea, coffee and squash. Please bring a dish and a drink (alcohol or otherwise). You never know, we might have a bit of music too! Please put it in your diary now and come along. We had a lovely time last year and it would be great to repeat it this year too."

The Ancestors' Trail: Back to the origin of life

Sunday 2nd September 2018, Time 10:30 - 16:00

at the village of Downe in Kent - Assembly point 10:30 By St Mary's Church, Downe (BR6 7U) at the intersection of High Street and High Elms Road

Join us on 2nd September 2018 for a gentle 8 mile walk along The Ancestors' Trail back to the origin of life. We will be walking through woods in the vacinity of the village of Downe in Kent where Charles Darwin's home, Down House, is located. Through the facility of one of the most prodigious products of Natural Selection, ie, the human imagination, we will be accompanied on our journey by Charles Darwin (1809--1882) himself and one of his close friends, Baronet John Lubbock, who at one time owned the High Elms Estate through which we will be walking. Lubbock was a great amateur naturalist and had many inspiring and illuminating conversations with Darwin throughout his life and also helped with the promotion of Darwin's ideas. As we move along the Trail we will be stopping at key points in the story of Evolution to hear what Darwin and Lubbock have to tell us about the stages of evolution. Their account will be illustrated and ornamented by poetry, music, song, food, and mixed-media art. The Trail is inspired by Richard Dawkin's book 'The Acestor's Trail' which in turn inspired London Humanists some years ago to conduct this Trail in Epping Forest. This is the first time it has been held around Down House, and as far as we know, with Darwin himself present! Numbers are limited so book your place now by emailing Kent Humanists. There will be a nominal charge of £5 to cover expenses and any profit will go to this year's charity.

Refugee Tales: A talk by David Herd, Professor of Modern Literature at the University of Kent and an internationally acclaimed poet

Sunday 16th September 2018, 2:30pm–4:30pm

at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB.

David Herd is co-organiser of the Refugee Tales project, which seeks to use story-telling as a way of drawing attention to the impact of indefinite detention on the lives of asylum seekers and immigration detainees. David will read one of the tales, The Appellant's Tale, and will discuss the campaign to end indefinite detention. He will explain how the project's annual walk (in solidarity with refugees, asylum seekers, and detainees) underpins its political activities and how the practice of story-telling can influence debate.

A Death Café

Sunday 21st October 2018, 2:30pm–4:30pm

at St Stephens Church Hall, Hales Drive, St Stephens, Canterbury, CT2 7AB.

In February last year we organised a ‘Death Café’ which was well supported, and much appreciated by those who came. Leigh Derbyshire writes: This year we would like to organise it a little differently and more sociably. So, we are going to sit three or four to a table, with tea and Wendy's lovely cake. If there are only 10-12 people I will facilitate it on my own. If there are more, then Richard will facilitate with me and we will split into two groups. For this session we will be asking for numbers beforehand so that we know what to expect. I hope that if you came last time you will feel free to come again. So many things come up for Humanists around this topic and it is always a good thing to discuss them. We look forward to seeing you.