The Alf Morris Lecture

Stroke of fate: The politics of recovery
With Jackie Ashby and Andrew Marr

The Alf Morris Lecture 2016 was given by the prominent journalists and broardcasters Jackie Ashley and Andrew Marr on Thursday 17th March under the title Stroke of fate: The politics of recovery.

Jackie and Andrew were speaking for the very first time as a couple about the impact on their lives of the major stroke that Andrew survived in 2013. In a discussion ranging from personal experience to national policy, they addressed the importance of practical help in keeping people with disabilities independent.

You can read more about the Lecture by clicking here, and view a recording of it by following the link below:

View the Alf Morris Lecture 2016

Prior to the Lecture, Andrew and Jackie said:

“Every year, millions of British people, either disabled or older, suffer fustration, despair and pain because of relatively simple problems, which can be solved. The help and equipment is all around them; but they can't get to it.”

“This is an enormous, and enormously under-reported national problem. It dosen't require brilliant new scientific advances, just practical, joined-up help to transform innumerable lives which could simply be happier than they are. We are coming together as a couple for the first time to speak at the forthcoming Alf Morris lecture on our personal experiences and the need for expert impartial advice. We are doing this in part to express our support for the excellent work that DLF does in providing practical help to older and disabled people, to their families, and to their carers.”

“Alf Morris and Jack Ashley dedicated their parliamentary careers to challenging the limitations imposed by society on people with disabilities. Both believed that practical help could be transformative, enriching not just indivdual lives but families and whole communuties. The Alf Morris Lecture is just a part of their legacy and, with healthcare provision under increasing strain, we believe its message of empowerment through knowledge is more important than ever before.”

Jackie Ashley is a prominent journalist and broardcaster, whose roles have included Producer and Newsreader on Newsnight, ITN Political Correspondent and Political Editor of the New Statesman. She is currently President of Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge. 

Jackie's father, Jack Ashley, Baron Ashley of Stoke, was a tireless disability campaigner, and a friend and college of Alf Morris.

Andrew Marr is a BAFTA and Royal Television Society award-winning journalist and broardcaster. Formerly Political Editor at BBC News, he has hosted The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday mornings since 2005, interviewing figures of national and international significance. 

Andrew has written and presented numerous series for the BBC, and is the author of several books including, most recently, We British: The Poetry of a People.

About The Alf Morris Lecture

The Alf Morris Lecture is fast becoming the leading annual event oin the disability calendar. Radical, inspirational and agenda-setting, its mission is to carry forward the work of The Rt Hon The Lord Morris of Manchester, whose life-long campaigning on behalf of older disabled people made him one of our greatest social reformers.

With an audience of legislators, activists, professionals and healthcare industry representatives, this is an essential event for anyone interested in the future of disability. 

The Alf Morris Lecture 2015

The inaugural Alf Morris Lecture took place on 10th March 2015 at the Shaw Theatre. Former Sunday Times editor Sir Harold Evans delivered a speech that drew on friendship with Alf Morris that went back to their shared schooldays in Manchester over 70 years ago. Passionate and incisive, his words served as a rallying cry to all who care about our most basic human rights, those of dignity and self-determination. 

The evening was introduced by Channel 4's award winning Health and Social Care Corrospondent, Victoria Macdonald. She then chaired a Q&A between members of the audience and Sir Harold.

The subsequent dinner, held at the adjacent Pullman St Pancras Hotel, concluded with a tribute to Alf Morris from his friend and former Cabinet collegue, The Rt Hon The Lord Owen CH.

Lord Owen, recalling a “tenacity” in Alf “that I've not seen in anyone else”, made a compelling case that NHS funding remains insufficient to cope with the needs of older and disabled people. 

View the inaugural Alf Morris Lecture

The Alf Morris Lecture is in support of The Alf Morris Fund for independent Living.

For further information about The Alf Morris Lecture or The Alf Morris Fund for independent Living, please contact the DLF Team by emailing or telephoning 0300 123 3084.

For information on partnership and sponsorship opportunities, please contact our Partnerships Team by emailing or telephoning 0300 123 3084.

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