Halifax Minster to host debates on society’s big issues

Halifax Minster
Halifax Minster

Halifax Minster is returning to its roots with a series of talks from special guests looking at issues affecting all of society throughout Britain.

The Minster Series is a chance to bring debate back to the church and for the building to be used as a space for people to come together and discuss major issues.

The three topics are Culture and Diversity; The Future of Education; and Banking and the Economy.

The three speakers will be Professor Ted Cantle, who established the former Institute of Community Cohesion (iCoCo), former Minister for Schools Lord Adonis, and group director of the Halifax community bank David Nicholson.

Bishops from across the borough will chair the debates which will include expert analysis from local politicians and community leaders before the topic is opened to the floor.

Vicar of Halifax Rev Hilary Barber said: “We want this to be an opportunity for informed debate about what is affecting the town and the borough today.

“We want to include all ages and in particular get young people to engage with politics. We will have a few more planned for next year too.

“For years the Minster was the only covered meeting place in the town.

“We want to continue that tradition and make sure the minster is seen as the gathering space for the community.

“It’s about defining the role of a contemporary urban minster.

“As well as for worship and other religious events it needs to be a prophetic space regardless of faith.

“The relationships between faith communities are really strong in Calderdale.”

The first debate entitled ‘Culture and Diversity, led by Professor Ted Cantle, will be held on Thursday October 17, from 6pm to 7.30pm.

‘The Future of Education’, led by Lord Adonis, will be on November 29, from 6.30pm to 8pm. The final talk will be ‘Banking and the Economy’, with David Nicholson, on February 17, 2014.