Lipreading Practice

Afternoon tea to raise deaf awareness

02 March 2019

Last week was an amazing week.   As the Mistress of the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers I have the opportunity to organise an event for my fellow consorts of other Livery Companies.   In April last year I decided that I would like to have an afternoon tea to raise deaf awareness.   It took a lot of planning!   I wanted to have a musical interlude. Last year at the City Lit Deaf Day I met Eloise Garland, who is a professional musician, teacher and Deaf Ambassador.  I then contacted Ruth Montgomery, who is also a professional musician, teacher and worked with Eloise for charities teaching music.  They both agreed to help! Together they would be amazing! Finally, last Tuesday, the event day arrived and the three of us made our presentations. We all had different backgrounds and experiences which was very good because we could show many aspects of hearing loss and the impact it had on our lives. Ruth and Eloise spoke about their backgrounds and then played together and individually and also spoke about the work that they do with the charity Decibels. They played their instruments beautifully and it was wonderful to listen to. I was so pleased for them.  I felt so fortunate to have them to show case what talent, hard work and determination can do!  This definitely showed that people with hearing loss can do everything hearing people can do, except hear. I have had so many messages from our guests and their response was amazing. They thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon and said what an insight it had given them into hearing loss. The presentations by Ruth and Eloise were so well received. So many people said that they could have listened to them play all afternoon. Money was raised for the charity Decibels, which aims to enable all people to have the opportunity to develop their creativity and to discover their talents; and for the Lord Mayors’ Appeal which is working to make the city a better place for all. More information can be found on their websites.

I must also mention the help of a young man, Dale Archibald, who has taken so much time and trouble to help me produce information literature for the afternoon event. That too was a great help and contributed to its success.    We were fortunate to have a volunteer sign interpreter who also made a great contribution to the afternoon. The staff of the Livery Company Hall were very helpful and so too were the caterers.

Back now to reality.  The next big hearing loss event is Deaf Day at City Lit on Saturday April 27th, 2019. Deaf Day has become one of the biggest events in the deaf community calendar with deaf, hard of hearing and hearing people of every age from across the UK coming to City Lit to socialise and celebrate deaf issues’. This year is the centenary of City Lit and there are many events planned. For more information see their website.


Finally, one of my lipreading group emailed me to say that she was going to have her cochlea implant on March 11th. I hope it goes well for her and look forward to hearing all about it in due course.  

I hope you all had a good weekend. Speak to you soon.