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Press Release - 04 February 2008

New programme of free public lectures for Swindon

Local people will be able learn about King Arthur, winning penalty shoot-outs and how to become an astronaut as part of the public lecture series at the University of Bath in Swindon (5.15-6.15pm on Wednesdays at the Oakfield campus, starting 6 February 2008).

The lecture programme starts with a talk on the use of photography and art for war propaganda. Roger Vlitos, a freelance photographer, will discuss the idea that the first casualty of war is truth. His talk, on 6 February, will be illustrated with famous documentary photographs and works by official war artists.

The science behind football penalty shoot-outs is the theme for the 13 February lecture. Dr Ken Bray, from the School for Health at the University of Bath, will go through penalty statistics and explore different strategies for goalkeepers. The lecture will include video clips from important games and tips for improving England’s chances of success in the future.

The series continues with a lecture about the environment and the role of Christianity in conservation (20 February). Mary Colwell, a BBC producer, will show clips of film to highlight the problems and discuss solutions.

The next lecture will explore the history of zoos over the last 150 years and outline the modern role they can play in the conservation of species and ecosystems. The lecture will be presented by Dr Jo Gipps, Director of the Bristol Zoo Gardens, on 27 February.

The legend of King Arthur is the topic of the following lecture on 5 March. Professor Ronald Hutton, from the University of Bristol, will discuss the mysteries behind these legends.

On 12 March, Amanda Parr, from BBC One’s Points West, goes behind the scenes of film-making in a talk about the production of the series ‘Seven Man Made Wonders’ of the West of England.

‘What does it take to become an astronaut?’ is the question of the final lecture of the series on 19 March. Dr Tracey Parker, a physicist from the University of Leicester, goes through the challenges of a space traveller and explores the future of space tourism.

The lectures are run by the University of Bath in Swindon. All lectures are held on Wednesdays, from 5.15pm until 6.15pm in Main Hall of the Oakfield campus on Marlowe Avenue.

Admission is free and everybody is welcome. Free parking is available.

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