Rock Inn Programme

To print off a programme....

  1. Select the section you want to print using your mouse
  2. Click 'File' in the menu at the very top left of your screen
  3. In the drop down menu click 'Print'
  4. In the dialogue box click the button for 'Selection'
  5. Click 'OK' - only your selected area should print off.

The Rock Inn Discussion Circle

Discussion Circle Programme for the Ye Olde Rock Inn, Upper Hulme, Near Leek, Staffs.

Discussion in Pubs at the Rock Inn

Programme Jan to April 2019

Jan 7 – Machiavelli: Was he really bad?

Jan 21 – Veganism: Way of life or fad?

Feb 4 – Cornelia Parker: Installation artist

Feb 18 – Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotions: A bit of a whirl through emotions

Mar 4 – Spanish Civil War: fanned by Hitler and ignored by Britain and USA

Mar 18 – Davd Hulme: 18th century Scottish philosopher – “passion rather than reason governs human behaviour”

Apr 1 – George Grosz - an officially insane artist

Apr 15 – The British Parliament : the evolution of our democracy

Apr 29 - Fairness: so what is fair?

This is a tentative programme and may change at the whim of the participants

Programme Sept to Dec 2018

Sept 24 - Are Mind Altering Drugs Good?- Not sure everything has gone wriggly.

Oct 8 – Perhaps the most influential Philosopher of the 20th century – John Rawls

Oct 22 – World War 1 poets – first hand horror

Nov 5 – Nanotechnology – tiny but perfectly formed , a blessing or a possible disaster?

Nov 19 – Henry Spencer Moore  (30 July 1898 – 31 August 1986) –artist, tight Yorkshireman but a good heart.

Dec 3 – Neanderthals – was their life violent, short and brutish?

Dec 17 - The Day Everything Went Down – Interconnected World

This is a tentative programme and may change at the whim of the participants

Rock Inn DiPs programme Jan to July 2018
All sessions start at 8pm
8 Jan – The Paradox of Choice: is it all too much?

22 Jan - Simon Armitage: the modern, accessible and unstuffy face of poetry?

5 Feb – Fashion: being trendy like what we are

19 Feb – Philosophic dilemmas: mind benders

5 March 2018 - Bernard Leach - Was he as influential on pottery as Josiah Wedgwood?

19 March - 30 years war(1618 – 1648) : One of the most destructive wars in history.

Easter falls on the 2nd April so next one is on…

9 April - Russian Revolution: A defining event in history

23 April - Cognitive bias: How on Earth do we achieve anything?

7 May - Gender: It’s complicated

21 May – Patriotism: Primitive tribalism dressed up?

4 June - Religion in Society: How religion has and continues to shape society.

18 June - Sustainabiltiy and Capitalism: Are they compatable?

2 July - Counter Culture: A different way?

18 July - Travel - Is it all a bit too much now?

These can change at the whim of the participants

Rock Inn DiPs programme Sept to Dec 2017

All sessions start at 8pm

11 Sept
Diet - We are what we eat

25 Sept
Rousseau philosopher - Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains

9 Oct
Picasso - Modern art’s most famous artist

23 Oct
Austerity – Making the poor pay for the excesses of the rich?

6 Nov
Japan – A culture very different to our own

20 Nov
Carol Ann Duffy – The first female poet laureate

4 Dec
Trident – Essential defence or waste of money?

18 Dec
Recycling – Can we stop being drowned in plastic bottles


Other Topics suggested are….
George Berkeley- Philosopher, Health Care, Green Transport, Futurology, Pottery.

Topics from other DiPs ……
Success, Evidence, World population, Romantic Love, Sculpture, Privacy, Masculinity, Volunteers, China, Things we know nothing about.



Rock Inn DiPs programme May to July 2017

All sessions start at 8pm

22 May
Paula Rego - artist:folk themes in pastels

5 June
Addiction - a diverse ailment or criminal act?

19 June
Tony Harrison - poet and playwright

3 July
The Beginning of the Universe - you couldn't make it up!

17 July
The Philosophy of Nietzche - One of the 20th century's most influencial philosophers


Rock Inn DiPs programme Jan to May 2017

All sessions start at 8pm

16 Jan
Films – the art form of the masses?

30 Jan
Martin Luther – 500 years since his proclamation

13 Feb
Genetics – the science that will produce miracles and challenge our

27 Feb
Imagination – the joy and bane of our lives?

13 Mar
Art as Therapy – There is so much to art but can it heal us?

27 Mar
Democracy – A poor political system which has mythical status

10 Apr
Phillip Larkin - "England's other Poet Laureate"

24 Apr
The Probation Service – Is it working?

8 May
Post Truth – Politician’s blatant lies don’t seem to bother us anymore

22 May
Why are there still so many jobs?

The programme may change at any time at the whim of the participants

Lazy Trout DiPs programme Sept to Dec 2016

All sessions start at 8pm

12 Sept
The Meaning of Life – Do our lives have meaning?
26 September
Zaha Hadid – a remarkable “starchitect”
10 Oct
24 Oct
Revolution in the UK – will we revolt anytime soon?
7 Nov
The Fashion Houses – Engineers of status
21 Nov
Hate and Anger – Negative emotions?
5 Dec
Alain de Botton – co-founder of the ‘School of Life’
19 Dec
Universal Human Rights - Freedom Justice, Protection etc


16 Jan 2017
Films – there has been over a century of this art form. What do they mean to us?

The programme may change at any time at the whim of the participants

Lazy Trout DiPs programme  Jan to May 2016

All sessions start at 8pm

11 Jan
Language – our communication system and much more

25 Jan
Grayson Perry – Mad Potter?

8 Feb
The History of Number - the evolution of the numbers we use today

22 Feb
Saudi Arabia – brutal, conservative and powerful

7 Mar
Couple of poems – playful language

21 Mar
Wisdom and knowledge – we know more but are we wiser?

4 Apr   
Culture is Ordinary – culture is everywhere

18 Apr   
Shakespeare sonnets – poems by the most famous playwright in history

2 May    Early Spring Bank Holiday

16 May   
Being – Why is there something and not nothing?

30 May
Spring Bank Holiday – no session

13 Jun
The EU debate – in or out?

27 Jun
All that are happy are not equally happy – what is happiness?

11 July
Masculinity – based on Grayson Perry’s TV programmes

25 July
The Future of “Work” – what will work look like in a few and lots of years time

The programme may change at any time at the whim of the participants


Programme for the Lazy Trout Discussion Circle –Sept 2015 to Dec 2015

The Lazy Trout Discussion in Pubs(Dips) resumes on Sept 21st with the following provisional programme

Sept 21 - The BBC - How should it change?

Oct 5 - Turkey - What do we know about it and its history?

Oct 19 - What's in a Name? - Branding, Stage names etc

Nov 2- Tracy Emin - But is it Art?

Nov 16 - A letter of the Alphabet. - We'll pick a letter and discuss anything that starts with that letter.

Nov 30 - Shame and Trust - Pillars of social behaviour.

Dec 14 - Nothing and Chaos - How can you talk about nothing?

At each meeting we'll discuss the forward programme and change and extend as appropriate.

Programme for the Lazy Trout Discussion Circle –Jan 2015 to July 2015

Jan 12 - The English Language – a universal language?

Jan 26 - The Working Class – is there anybody there?

Feb 9 - Bertrand Russell – "I think we ought always to entertain our opinions with some measure of doubt…."

Feb 23 – Cosmetic Surgery – tinkering with the body image?

Mar 23 - Is Science a threat to Mankind? – Is science leading us to a sticky end?

Apr13 - Freedom of Speech – we aren't as free as we were.

Apr 27 - Putin

May 11 – Crony Capitalism – It's all about who you know.

Jun8 – Trident - Should we keep it?

Jun 22– Sale of Human Organs – A legitimate market

July 6 – The Robots are Coming – will there be enough work to go round?

July 20 - Newspapers – are they the force they were?

Programme for the Lazy Trout Discussion Circles – Jan 2014 to Apr 2014

13 Jan 2014


27 Jan 2014

Progressive taxation

10 Feb 2014

Protest songs

24 Feb 2014


10 Mar 2014

Michel Sandel

24 Mar 2014

Architecture can make you ill

7 Apr 2014

Charles Dickens versus Irvine Welsh


Programme for the Lazy Trout Discussion Circles – Jan 2013 to April 2013

28 Jan 2013 Nursing – do we care?

4 Feb 2013 The Belgian Congo – a country constantly torn by war why?

18 Feb 2013 The Cosmos – we are part of it what do we know about it?

4 Mar 2013 Social Services – part of our civilisation but somehow under threat.

18 Mar 2013 Wither the WWW – what has happened and what will happen as a result of electronic media.

8 Apr 2013 The Eiger and Mt Everest – they are still there!

Lazy Trout Programme Sept 2012 to Dec 2012

1. Sept 17.
Eugenics – Will it re-emerge?

2. Oct 1.
Innovation and patent law – is it good for us consumers?

3. Oct 15.
Introverts – do they get the short straw?

4. Oct 29.
Co-operatives – are they wholesome again?

5. Nov 12.
The Olympics and Paralympics 2012 – sport for all?

6. Nov 26.
Televising criminal trials – Look who's on tele now!

7. Dec 10.
What makes a good discussion? – then mince pies or some such.

Christmas Break

This programme is subject to change at the whim of the participants!

Lazy Trout Programme Jan – July 2012

Jan 9 - How would we change the capitalist system? - Occupy

Jan 23 - Arab Spring

Feb 6 - Charity

Feb 20 - The English Civil War

Mar 5 - The Honours List

Mar 19 - Reputation

Apr 2 - Tourism benefits the World?

Apr 16 - A poem or two

Apr 30 - Secularism

May 14 - Inquisitorial v adversarial law systems

May 28 - Film "The Lives of Others"

Jun 11 - Regulate the internet?

Jun25 - Scottish Independence/ English Parliament

July 8 - Compulsory Vaccination

July 23 - Fair Trade holds back the developing World?


Programme June to Dec 2011

13 Jun 2011 – Wind Turbines. The Marmite of Energy Generation.*

27 Jun 2011 – Torture. Is it always wrong?

11 July 2011 – Freemasonry.  Does it do good or is it just social climbing?*

Summer break

5 Sept 2011 – Hinduism. What do we know about it?

19 Sept 2011 – A painting and a sculpture.

3 Oct 2011 – Understanding and Forgiveness. Old fashioned values?

17 Oct 2011 – Anti – Matter. Does it matter? Why do we have the LHC?

31 Oct 2011 – Aesthetics and the Golden Ratio. The Planners attempt at rationalisation.

14 Nov 2011 - Should prisoners have the right to vote?

28 Nov 2011 – Taboos. Things we should not talk about.

12 Dec 2011 -  Christmas. What's it all about?

Christmas break

* Topics requested.


Jan 2011 -May 2011
All discussions start at 19-45hrs

10 Jan 2011 – What is Biodiversity?

24 Jan 2011 – How do we know we are happy?

7 Feb 2011 -   Has television been a malign influence on society?

21 Feb 2011 - Should Children be smacked?

7 Mar 2011 – Should we spend so much on Space?

21 Mar 2011 – Multiculturalism

4 Apr 2011 – A double header …..
The paintings of Salvador Dali.
Aviation environmental issues.

18 Apr 2011 – How can we create a fairer society?

2 May 2011 – Factory Farming and cheap food.

16 May 2011 – Are we too close to the USA?

30 May 2011 – Torture in Interrogation


This programme can be changed at anytime at the whim of the participants.


The Lazy Trout Discussion Circle

Discussion Circle Programme for the Lazy Trout, Meerbrook, Near Leek, Staffs.

Sept April - Dec 2010
All discussions start at 19-45Hrs

Sept 20th        - Ideology and Belief

Oct 4th           - Freewill, does it exist?

Oct 18th          - Gender or class, which has most effect on a life?

Nov 1st            - Target culture

Nov 15th          - Greed

Nov 29th          - Funding of political parties

Dec 13th          - What is Madness?

The Lazy Trout Discussion Circle
Discussion Circle Topics for the Lazy Trout, Meerbrook, Near Leek, Staffs.
April - July 2010
All discussions start at 19-45Hrs

April 12 – Confidence. How important is it?

April 26 – Karl Marx. Is all forgiven?

May 10 – The age of criminal responsibility. Do we treat young offenders right in the UK?

May 17 – A Greener Way of Life

May 31 – Is Hollywood a benefit to the world? Does the US film industry warp the world?

June 14 – Transport. How should we get about in the future?

June 28 – Two subjects as an experiment. "The Badger Cull" and "Why do we need royalty"

July 12 - TBA 

This programme is subject to change at the whim of the participates!

ODD Circle Programme for

the Lazy Trout, Meerbrook, Near Leek, Staffs.
Jan - March 2010

Everybody welcome.  Free of charge. Visit for background and notes.
All discussions start at 19-45hours.

Monday 18 Jan 2010 – Hunting right or wrong? – This will embrace all Field Sports.

Monday 25 Jan 2010 - The Future of Museums and Art Galleries. – Will they survive into the 22nd century?

Monday 8 Feb 2010 - Conflict resolution - Middle east.

Monday 22 Feb 2010 - John Ruskin - Art critic and thinker

Monday 8 Mar 2010 – Memorialisation – Why has it become so popular?

Monday 22 Mar 2010 – Faith Schools – Are they a good thing?

This programme is subject to change at the whim of the participates!


Open Democracy Discussion Group
Proposed Programme -  Autumn/Winter 2009
Fortnightly on Mondays  at The Lazy Trout pub, Meerbrook, nr Leek  19.30 for 19.45 >  21.15hrs

07-Sep-09 Thatcherism - love her or hate her she did make a difference
21-Sep-09 Dignitas and a poem on death - new for us, we will firstly review a poem and then discuss Dignitas and euthanasia.
05-Oct-09 Long life and its effects - average life span is increasing, what will it mean for society?
19-Oct-09 Do animals have ethics? - we are finding more and more that animal behaviour is more complex than egocentric humans thought.
02-Nov-09 To be decided by the group - somthing topical or whatever.
16-Nov-09 Buddhism - discussion on the basic concepts of this eastern way of life.
30-Nov-09 The Teenagers years -
the highs and lows of being a teenager
14-Dec-09 What is art and culture? - two words with many, many meanings.

Christmas break

Reconvenes 04-Jan -2010

These are previous programmes

Open Democracy Discussion Group
Programme -  Summer/Autumn 2009
Fortnightly on Mondays  at The Lazy Trout pub, Meerbrook, nr Leek  19.30 for 19.45 >  21.15hrs

15 June – Is the USA a spent Force? - Will the top dogs of the 20th century hack it in the 21st?

29 June – Should we get out of the EU? - Is membership of the EU a good thing for Britain?

13 July – English nationalism – Why are the English so backward at nationalism? Is it being high-jacked by the nasty right?

27 July – Why are we in Afghanistan? – Why are our soldiers dying in a very foreign land?

------------------------------- Summer Break ---------------------------

To be continued.......


Open Democracy Discussion Group
Programme -  Spring 2009
Fortnightly on Mondays  at The Lazy Trout pub, Meerbrook, nr Leek  19.30 for 19.45 >  21.15hrs

16th March - Inequality in Society. -from a 'Start the Week' programme on Radio 4. Inequality can have nasty knock-on effects.

30th March - Do we get the Politians we deserve? - Do we expect too much. Is the 'blame culture' counter productive?


20th April - Is Public Art worth it? - The funding of it and is it accessible to all?

4th May - Individual Freedom in the UK. - Has freedom been eroded too far in the name of security and cultural harmony?

18th May - 'History is Bunk' - this misquote of Henry Ford has many interpretations. Should we live in the present and look to the future?

1st June - Life Changing Moments - We've all had them. How the course of life and history can change in a moment.

15th June - Primary Education, how is has affected us. - Can we see lasting effects from our early education? What are the implications?