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Shale Gas: Good News for Sussex?

Jane Thomas and Benny Peiser

When?
Monday, August 12 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Jane Thomas and Benny Peiser

What's the talk about?

**THIS IS A TICKETED EVENT** 

Are Sussex's shale gas reserves manna from heaven or a poisoned chalice?

The development of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) has enabled the potential exploitation of an enormous amount of natural gas that is currently stored in rocks deep beneath the Sussex countryside. Continuing exploratory works - and the resulting protests - have put Sussex at the heart of the fracking debate.

In an attempt to establish the facts, Horsham SitP will be hosting a debate between representatives of both sides of the argument.

 

Jane Thomas is Senior Campaigner for Friends of the Earth in England

Dr. Benny Peiser is Director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation and editor of CCNet

 

Both speakers will give a statement, followed by dialogue. After a break, the audience can ask both participants any questions they may have.

 

Due to the anticipated demand we are ticketing this event so that everyone who wants to come along will get a seat. Takings will be used for speaker expenses for this and future events. Ticket price is £2.50 (not the usual £2) due to charges from the ticketing website.

 

TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE

(If you can't buy tickets online, please email horsham.skeptics@gmail.com to reserve a seat)

Michael Brooks

When?
Monday, July 8 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Michael Brooks

What's the talk about?

 The public perception of the scientist is of a cool, logical and level-headed individual. However, many of the world’s most successful scientists have more in common with libertines than librarians. Some of science’s greatest moments came from those who played fast and loose with data and research ethics, got into vicious fights and even took drugs just to get ahead. Making the most brilliant discoveries, and bringing them to the world's attention, often requires more than a little anarchy...

Michael Brooks, who holds a PhD in quantum physics, is an author, journalist and broadcaster. He is a consultant at New Scientist, a magazine with over three quarters of a million readers worldwide, has a weekly column for the New Statesman and is a Huffington Post UKblogger. He is the author of Free Radicals: The Secret Anarchy of Science and the bestselling non-fiction title 13 Things That Don't Make Sense.

His writing has also appeared in the Guardian, the Independent, the Observer, the Times Higher Education, the Philadelphia Inquirer and many other newspapers and magazines. He has lectured at various places, including New York University, The American Museum of Natural History and Cambridge University.

'Michael Brooks is the canniest science writer around. He writes, above all, with attitude.'  The Independent

How Can Philosophy Contribute to Science and Skepticism?

Clio Bellenis

When?
Monday, June 10 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Clio Bellenis

What's the talk about?

 Clio Bellenis argues for the relevance of philosophy for skeptics.

Having been initially sceptical of philosophy's value in an age of empiricism, Clio changed her mind after some years studying the subject.


When Prof. Brian Cox dismissed philosophy (as he actually does with everything but physics though, let's be honest!) she decided to put this argument together in an attempt to win over the undecided.
Clio will discuss how science and philosophy, being different, can complement each other, and so improve our knowledge of the world. She will use examples from areas of thought where philosophy is making significant contributions, as well as some which might just be interesting.

Dr Clio Bellenis is a child and adolescent psychiatrist who has spent all her working life in the NHS.

Meddling with forces we barely understand

Oliver Meech

When?
Monday, May 13 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Oliver Meech

What's the talk about?

Magic boffin Oliver Meech meddles with forces we barely understand, in a comedy magic show for the QI generation. Brain-boggling tricks inspired by mind-blowing science. It’s the Natural Selection!

**** “funny, endearing, impressive showmanship” ThreeWeeks

“real gasps of awe”  Broadway Baby

“could rival superstar Derren Brown” Theatre Wales

Sell-out performances at Brighton Fringe, Oxford Fringe and Green Man Festival.


After melding magic with Time and Neuropsychology in previous hit shows, Oliver turns his attention to the rest of the universe. Oliver Meech studied Experimental Psychology at Oxford University, Creativity at top London ad agencies and Trickery at The Magic Circle. He fuses all three to produce magic that’s “fascinating and different from other magicians” (Girl Who Just Wants To Be Entertained).

When not messing with minds at Fringe festivals around the UK, he’s a regular on the Science scene (Science Museum, Natural History Museum, Skeptics in the Pub Cheltenham and Winchester). Off stage, he’s the author of 3 critically-acclaimed magic books. MAGIC magazine calls him “a breath of fresh air”. Genii Online calls him “wildly creative”. He calls himself Olly.

How we will protect the planet for future generations

Mark Stevenson

When?
Monday, April 8 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Mark Stevenson

What's the talk about?

 Mark Stevenson has been to the future a few years ahead of the rest of us – and came back believing we still have everything to play for. His voyage of discovery took him to Boston to visit a robot with mood swings, to an underwater cabinet meeting in the Indian Ocean, and Australia to question the Outback’s smartest farmer, had his genome profiled, and glimpsed the next stage of human evolution … then he tried to make sense of what’s in store.

The result was An Optimist’s Tour of the Future, which is finding fans from schoolchildren through to Nobel Peace Prize winners. Mark will talk of the future of humanity and how technology will help remedy some of these problems.

Mark combines two careers – one as a successful writer and comedian and as co-founder and director of the cultural learning agency Flow Associates and the science communication agency ReAgency, Roving Learner at The Age of Smart, a fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce and Nibmaster General for the Ministry of Stories.

http://anoptimiststourofthefuture.com/

49 Reasons to Doubt, 50 Reasons to Believe

Ian Shircore

When?
Monday, March 11 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Ian Shircore

What's the talk about?

This talk will provide an opportunity for our audience to flex all of their skeptical muscles and promises to be a lively one...

In his book Conspiracy! 49 Reasons to Doubt, 50 Reasons to Believe, author Ian Shircore unveils what he claims are the true circumstances behind the widely talked about deaths of public figures like Princess Diana, Bob Woolmer and Elvis Presley. He also looks at some of our most notorious political scandals such as the government’s cover-up of the Claudy IRA bombing. Not forgetting the weird and the wonderful, the book also examines sci-fi wanderings with UFO landings in Roswell, Mexico, and the downright obscure with claims that the Duke of Edinburgh is a shape-shifting lizard.

Ian Shircore hopes to take what you thought you knew about the mysteries of the modern world, and turn it on its head.

His lifelong interest in cover-ups and conspiracies was stirred by the stream of revelations in recent years in declassified documents and answers to Freedom of Information Act requests. He was handed an amazing bonus, midway through writing his latest book, when WikiLeaks published its treasure trove of secret cables.

Ian Shircore was also publicly accused by The Times of being Belle de Jour. He is not Belle de Jour (but she did recommend his book when she came to Horsham Skeptics in February)


What do you want to talk about?

You

When?
Monday, February 11 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
You

What's the talk about?

 

FREE ENTRY! (Normally £2)

**Very pleased to announce that all donations taken on this night will go towards the Phoenix Stroke Club, a local charity that works with those that have have suffered from stroke and other neurological problems.**

Here’s their page at The Stroke Association

At the January SitP night, the audience voted for the three talks they wanted to hear on the 11th of February. The winners were:

And here are the talks:

Tannice Pendegrass

HOW OUR BRAINS TIE US UP IN KNOTS

Drawing on her experiences at various Holistic and Mystic events of and her background in psychology, Tannice will take you on a brief tour through your own mind to show you how you might find yourself tricked. From pareidolia to praying to psychics, you’ll divine an insight into how the other half live. You might even find some common ground with believers.

Tannice is the assistant editor of The Skeptic Magazine, does a talk about quack autism treatments and runs Guildford Skeptics in the Pub. She is also a committee member of the South East Skeptics Society.

James Smith

ENERGY: FACTS AND FICTION

Can wind turbines make you ill? Are your energy bills going up every year to pay for more renewables? Is nuclear power safe? Can we run the world on solar power? We’ll take a quick look at the most popular energy myths, and maybe uncover a few facts along the way.

Inigo Aranguena

THE SKEPTIC DELUSION
(Where Dawkins and I got it all wrong.)

Through the analysis of interesting (and fun) data, and with the help of other rational tools (for example, we’ll see what we can learn from the recent evolution of technology) I will show that, in spite of what many skeptics believe, the world is not becoming more rational at all. We will see why The-God-Delusion type of approach is never going to work, and that, in fact, can do more harm than good.

_______________

Each talk will be about 15 minutes long, with up to 15 minutes of Q&A and discussion after each. This is the first time we have tried this format and if it goes as well as we think it will then we’ll do these kind of events more often.

 

Dr. Brooke Magnanti

When?
Sunday, February 10 2013 at 7:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Dr. Brooke Magnanti

What's the talk about?

**THIS TALK HAS NOW SOLD OUT - Please email horsham.skeptics@gmail.com to get on a list for returned tickets**

Dr. Brooke Magnanti will be speaking at Horsham Skeptics in the Pub after the paperback release of her latest book The Sex Myth. This book critically examines beliefs about sex, the sex industry and the motivations behind those who set the agenda on these issues in the media and society.

As well as discussing this book, Dr Magnanti will be talking about her latest work on “the failure of drug discovery”. Horsham’s connections with the pharmaceutical industry make this the perfect place for a discussion on this subject.

Dr. Magnanti is perhaps best known as the author behind Belle De Jour. These best-selling books were dramatised in the popular TV series The Secret Diary of a Call-Girl. Brooke Magnanti is also a regular writer for the Telegraph and often appears on TV and radio. We are absolutely delighted to be hosting her at Horsham Skeptics in the Pub.

Horsham Skeptics in the Pub uses admission money to cover the costs associated with bringing interesting speakers to Horsham. Our guest speakers are not paid other than for their expenses.

Sam Fremantle

When?
Monday, January 7 2013 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Sam Fremantle

What's the talk about?

Sam Fremantle, from the London School of Philosophy will guide us through the content of the various Humanism courses he has taught, highlighting contemporary ethics and describing some of the ongoing debates relating to the subject.

Sam specialises in ethics and political philosophy.  His first degree was philosophy and economics at the University of Bristol which was then followed by the MA in political philosophy (the idea of toleration) at the University of York.  He is currently completing his doctoral thesis on the subject of distributive justice at UCL.  He has taught at Morley College, Lambeth and continues to teach at Birkbeck College.

You can also currently find him teaching the Humanism courses at London's Conway Hall

Conscious presence and interoceptive awareness

Kate Genevieve

When?
Monday, December 10 2012 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Kate Genevieve

What's the talk about?

 Kate Genevieve is currently Artist-in-Residence at the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science at the University of Sussex.  Kate has been investigating the Sackler Centre’s research into conscious presence and interoceptive awareness through the creation of multi-sensory installations.  She will talk about the digital performance NO PLACE, that employs immersive visuals, multi-sensory effects and binaural soundscapes to take participants on a journey that plays with their awareness of the environment and of their own bodies. She will also show her new project, an installation that combines eighteenth century illusion techniques with contemporary biosensor technology, to stage a visceral encounter with the audience’s heartbeat.

Kate is an artist and director who works with moving image, sound and the human body to create immersive environments for audiences that explore the interaction between embodiment and perception.  Kate founded Chroma Collective in 2010, a group of artists, animators and technologists brought together by an interest in investigating the human body in relationship to technology and the environment.

Do have a look at the wonderful work she's been doing, including the truly amazing NO PLACE which Kate will talk about a bit more on the night.

Adventures of a skeptical paranormal investigator

Hayley Stevens

When?
Thursday, November 1 2012 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Hayley Stevens

What's the talk about?

As a special post-halloween treat, we are having a one-off Thursday night event on the 1st of November. Hopefully you'll all be full of halloween cheer and in the perfect mood for a bit of hands-on ghost-scrutinising.

Allow skeptical paranormal investigator, Hayley Stevens, to introduce you to the often confused & somewhat scary world of paranormal research. From sham ghosts and paranormal politics to cursed houses and things that go bump in the night. Get hands on with ghost detecting gadgets, experience how sneaky the human brain really is, and witness for yourself the latest evidence for an afterlife (don’t get too excited, now…)

Hayley Stevens is one of Britain’s most vocal skeptical paranormal investigators and blogs as ‘Hayley is a Ghost’ where she documents her journey from being a belief led ghost hunter to a sceptical non-believer. Once referred to by BBC News as ‘a mix between Jonathan Creek and Scooby Doo’ she has been actively investigating ghosts and monsters since her teens in 2005 and is, quite frankly, weird.

“These guys know what they’re talking about!” (re: a panel Hayley sat on)  
Dr Steven Novella, Skeptics Guide to the Universe Podcast 

Simon Clare

When?
Monday, October 8 2012 at 8:00PM

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Where?

78 Brighton Road
Horsham, West Sussex RH13 5BU

Who?
Simon Clare

What's the talk about?

 

The Alpha Course runs in 169 countries and has been attended, according to their website, by 19 MILLION people.

Over a 10 week period, students are guided through Christian theology in an attempt, ostensibly, to “Explore the meaning of Life”.

In 2011, Simon Clare, a full-on atheist and organiser of Horsham Skeptics in the Pub, signed up to his local Alpha Course in Brighton, wondering if he would end up converted. Spoiler: He wasn’t converted but did learn some surprising things about humans and about faith.

The Alpha Course is living proof that organised religion is far from dead and that it knows how to adapt. Can atheists adapt in the same way, or has the church stolen a march on them?

In this talk, Simon will take you through the entire course, fairly but critically, in 45 minutes.