Wirksworth Twinning – Cabaret

February 28, 2021

Wirksworth (UK) Die (F) Varallo (I) Frankenau (D)

Stay ‘in touch’ without touch! Online Zoom talks that have social distance but offer a mix of inspiration, new knowledge and human stories.

May 22, 2020

Hershey – Cuba’s Chocolate railway. TBC

In 1916 the famous American chocolate company built an electric railway to bring sugar to the coast. The sugar refinery is now closed but the railway is now legendary as it uses Spanish-built trains from 1940 to cover the 95 kms with over 40 stations. As Alastair discovered, all Cuban life is on the train

In the wake of  Narrow Boat ‘Cressy’ Sunday 28 June 7.00pm BST


All talks are offered at no charge but if you are satisfied you may like to make a donation afterwards (eg £4-£6).

email to alastair@aclark.eu


Visite de Limoges 25-28 Remembering Octobre 2018

October 28, 2018

Avec sept étudiants nous avons passé un bon séjour à Limoges, cependant nous avons parlé beaucoup de français.

Trois jours a Limoges

July 9, 2018

Trois jours a Limoges


An informal visit to LImoges with structured nad semi structured opportunities to practise and develop language skills

Who for?
Any adult learning French – this is not aimed at  a particular level.

Because this has worked well in the past and people have asked for it.

Who is running this?
Coordinated informally by Alastair Clark but this is not an official trip



Monday 8 October

21.30 meet Kings Highway  Rowditch, Derby, DE22 3NH


Thursday 25 October –

11.00 Meet East Midlands Airport

13.45 Depart East Midlands on Flight Ryanair FR 1632

16.30 arrive Limoges airport and take shared taxi to Ibis Budget Limoges

17.30 approx – arrive at hotel and check in.

18.30 Short walking tour of Limoges

19.30 Meal in restaurant together.

21.00 return to hotel free time.




Friday 26 October

8.00 Breakfast

9.30 joint cultural visit (TBC but associated with history of Limoges and ceramic industry)

12.00 Free time and project groups set off to:   find lunch venue for each group, undertake research project to present to others.

16.00 all groups meet to share experiences at location near to hotel.

19.30 group joint meal.

21.00 return to hotel


Saturday 27 October

8.00 Breakfast

9.00 individual visits based on recommendations from feedback from research groups.

13.00 Rendez-vous lunch time to share experiences

13.50 Free time with option to take local train / bus to explore areas beyond central Limoges

19.00 Evening Meal

Sunday 28 October

Free time in Limoges and return to airport for flight at 12.40



At time of writing, return fare with Ryanair is well under 100 pounds (this may change). Participants book their own flights. 


Thursday 25 October Depart East Midlands 13.45 arrive Limoges 16.30

Sunday 28th October Depart Limoges: 12.40    arrive East midlands 13.20



Ibis Budget Limoges

About 40 pounds per night

Cost of cultural visit   about 10 Pounds

Other costs


Amount on shared taxis   approx 20 pounds

Three evening meals approx 100 pounds

Three lunches approx 30 pounds

Incidentals and drinks are at your discretion.





Good advice


Bring an EU medical card

Ensure that you have adequate travel insurance.


You will need cash and for this you can change money in advance but also you can take cash from ATMs in France using your debit card


More details  alastairclark@yahoo.com    07847417027

I’m a CMALT are you?

May 9, 2018

I was delighted to learn that, after submission of an updated portfolio, my Certified Membership of the Association for Learning Technology has been confirmed for another 3 years.


BadgeALT CMALT 2017%2F8.jpg

CMALT is widely recognised as demonstrating professionalism in application of technology to learning.

Although I took a step down from heading the Digital Learning Team at the National Institute for Adult Continuing Education, I have kept up my practice and have particularly focussed on the potential of video to inspire and enhance learning.   The recent Nos Weekends project was just one such example so I offer a big Merci to professional partners Helen Rogers in Derby  and Vincent Poyet in Mauriac – not to mention the inspiring group of adult learners who seized the opportunity of trying new ways to learn.

My message to fellow professionals:

It is well worth going through the portfolio process just to remind yourself of how much you have achieved in your career and then obtain the recognition of your peers and managers.  

Alastair Clark
To find out more about CMALT

March 27, 2018


Wirksworth on show at ‘Ecologie au Quotidien – French environment conference.

January 30, 2018



Seventeen people from Wirksworth contributed to an environment conference in our twin town of Die (pronounced ‘dee’)  in South East France this week. However, only three actually traveled there.


The other participants travelled to France in video form on a small computer USB memory stick!

Rob Tresidder, John Horak and Alastair Clark animated a conference session supported by the montage of messages collected from Wirksworth people.

Responses from the participant in Die to like minded people in Wirksworth were conveyed on cardboard cut out figures which will be used a feedback meeting in Wirksworth in March.

The video taken from Wirksworth to Die

Des Voix de Wirksworth from alastair clark on Vimeo.

Local radio station – Radio Diois – took an interview from the Wirksworth team who were able to explain in French some of the key initiatives in Wirksworth including Stoney Wood, Transition Wirksworth, the Farmers Market and the Derbyshire Eco Centre.


Nos Weekends – Première mondiale du film.

January 4, 2018



Adult Learners of French create film in France with French partners

This 6 month project brought together adult learners of French in Derby with a group learning video techniques in Mauriac in France. The result was a 30 minute film written and performed by both groups and shot in France in December 2017  . We were joined by friends and supporters at parallel World Premier showing in Derbyshire and Mauriac on 14 January 2018. 


The film itself and the Back Story can be seen on the web site of our French partner


Les groupes

October 14, 2017

You can access your work areas as shown below

Scène 2  – Monaco
DERBY: Kevin  et Guy
MAURIAC: Michèle
Votre éspace

Scène 3  La Rochelle (le moulin a vent)
DERBY: Carol, Andy et Lyn
MAURIAC:  Frédéric
Votre éspace

Scène 4 Camping
DERBY: John, Judith et  Maria
MAURIAC:  Michel Vincent
Votre éspace

Scène 5 – Deauville 
DERBY: Maureen et Chris
MAURIAC: Paulette et Guy
Votre éspace


Example first message

Bonjour – nous tres content de travailler avec vous.

Je m’appelle  Jo Bloggs

Je suis aussi dans le groupe – je m’appelle Cindy Jones



  • Les deux voyageurs arrive a la gare
  • Il n’y a plus de taxis
  • Ils demande a un gendarme
  • Le gendarme propose qu’ils attendent 10 minutes
  • Apres une heure………
  • …………………..






Nos weekends – an Anglo French video Project

June 29, 2017

Ce projet vous propose la possibilité de participer dans une collaboration entre Derby (UK) et Mauriac (Fr) .


What ?

A video making project where a group of Derby-based adults learning French work with a partner group in Mauriac in France.  The two groups will use the French language to create a video in which they collaborate in creation if and in taking roles.

It follows a very successful collaboration in Autumn 2016 which started with films made in Derby and then a collaboration in Mauriac on ‘Le Songe de Theo


Who for ?

This is for anyone who has a basic knowledge of French (eg at least one year of evening class) .

Who for ?
This is for anyone who has a basic knowledge of French (eg at least one year of evening class) .

Why ?
This is a great way to practise existing language skills and to learn more vocabulary and structures through informal use rather than in a  formal class. It will also provide contact between groups of people and give an insight to life in ‘real France’ away from tourist locations.

When ?
This project will run during the Autumn of 2017 and will include a joint session filming in Mauriac late November 2017.

By November everyone has booked:

  • plane to and from Limoges
  • Hotel Ibis Budget in Limoges  Thurs 30 November

We have some confirmations of additional costs:

  • Travel- Limoges – Mauriac and return (coach)  100 Euros
  • Hotel Mauriac: Single rooms 48 Euro/night plus 8 Euro Breakfast: 112 Euro Total
  • (Double room = 116 Euro per night plus 8 Euro PP breakfast)
  • 4 meals at Mauriac approx 25 Euros per meal     100 Euros

What this is not!
This is not an official Derby Adult Learning Service activity. It is also not a package tour. Participants can make their own travel arrangements and will pay directly for hotel accommodation.

Le film

Scene 1 A group of workers meet on Friday in  a cafe to discuss their plans for the weekend.


The text read by French partners 

Our first attempt at acting the scene (not for public view)


Le group de Derby.



Scenes 2,3,4,5  

Text created by anglo French mini groups

Each group ends with a secret disaster.


Les ‘mini groups’

septembre – octobre

Scene 6


Ca deviens claire que les screts ne sonts plus secrets! Le group de Mauriac

novembre – decembre

Le programme

19  July / juillet Face to face meeting kicked off the project at the Markeaton Pub ‘
August / aout  Stay in touch by email
Saturday 23 September / le 23 séptembre

9.30 – 12.00

Please sign up with Derby Adult learning Service for this. To sign up 


Project Launch- Play reading practice

Record Scene 1

Visio conference avec Mauriac

Establish groups Derby/ Mauriac

October / octobre Groups communicate over their work on scenes 2,3,4,5.
November / novembre

30 novembre – 3 decembre


Joint filming weekend



Thursday 30 Nov

East Midlands: dep 18.40
Limoges arr. 21.20

Hotel a Limoges

Friday 1 December

Arrive Mauriac 10.30

Saturday 2 December
Filming all day

Sunday 3 December

Depart Mauriac ??

Arrive Limoges  ????

Limoges dep: 12.40
East Midlands arr:  13.20

Les Prix (approx)

Ryanair                                                100 GBP
Hotel                                                    150 GBP
Travel Limoges – Mauriac             100 GBP

Plus some meals.

Interested? Contact: alastair@aclark.eu