"I would like to thank Hearing Help Uttlesford for their generous donation of £1510 which has helped to fund the second phase of Lipreading practice."
Finding Inspiration and other Acknowledgements
When I first lost my hearing I was very depressed and worried about how I was going to cope. Then I heard Jack Ashley speak. I was so impressed by his positive attitude and his tireless work on behalf of people with disabilities of all kinds. He became totally deaf during a routine operation. He continued as an MP but had to lipread in the House of Commons. He was well respected on both sides of the House and was helped not only by his wife but by other MP’s who would slip him notes or gesture to let him know how his speech delivery was coming across. In an interview he described how difficult it was, because lipreading is so imprecise. For those of us with some hearing we are better able to make it work for us but there are still difficulties. He was behind most of the campaigns for legislation that has helped those with disabilities access all areas of life. I greatly admired him and felt that here was someone who really overcame his difficulty and worked for others. My one regret is that even when I was a British Tinnitus Association Trustee's Board member,I didn’t meet him. Sadly he is dead now but I still think of him when I have moments of doubt.
I was so lucky to meet Ivy Court and Margaret Pickerill, who were working in rehabilitation in the Addenbrookes’ Audiology Department that I attended. They helped me to try to recognise the sounds that I was now hearing. It was a revelation. I was used to teaching the sounds to children, and to find that I could no longer recognise them accurately was, to say the least, difficult to accept. With their help I began to build my confidence and believe that I could continue with my job (By now I was a Junior School Headteacher).
Another inspirational person in my life was my lipreading teacher Judy Knox. She made the classes so interesting and such fun that it was a joy to be a member of the group. I learned so much from her and was inspired to eventually take over some of her classes when she retired. Her positive attitude and brilliant teaching inspired me to want to help others as she had helped me! I’m happy to say that I am still in contact with her to this day.
I would like to thank Adult Community Learning Essex and Suffolk Deaf Association for giving me the opportunity to teach lipreading in their areas thus meeting some amazing people, many of whom have become personal friends. In particular, I would like to thank Nola Marshall, ACL Curriculum Manager in Essex, who has always given me such positive feedback, encouragement and support.
Thanks too, to two of my friends, Tim Viaene and Geoffrey Hodge who encouraged and gave me technical advice when I was trying to create this programme on my own. Also to the filming team led by Andy Taplin (Peninsula Films) and to the design team, Andy Squires and Steve Morphey at The Design Business, who created this web site and who gave encouragement and advice on the presentation of the work.
Finally thanks to my family for their constant encouragement and belief in me. Thanks to Simon Wyatt, Robert Lewis and Robert McGregor for their support in helping to produce this website. Especially thanks to John, my husband, who has supported me in every aspect of my work, especially in creating this website. He has driven this project so that we can now present a lipreading practice programme.