Film his­tory of sign lan­guage

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Helping Others -

An Ash­ford man will fea­ture in a ground-break­ing doc­u­men­tary about the UK deaf com­mu­nity.

Power in Our Hands will premier at the Gul­benkian Cinema in Can­ter­bury next Wed­nes­day, and Dr Terry Ri­ley, a well-known in­ter­na­tional deaf cam­paigner, will hold a Q&A af­ter the screen­ing.

The doc­u­men­tary con­tains lost pho­tos and film from the Bri­tish Deaf As­so­ci­a­tion ar­chives, in­clud­ing rare footage of the Na­tional Deaf Choir Com­pe­ti­tion be­ing per­formed in Can­ter­bury Cathe­dral.

Dr Ri­ley, an Ash­ford res­i­dent, is a for­mer editor of BBC See Hear who has ben elected to both the Euro­pean Union of the Deaf and the World Fed­er­a­tion of the Deaf.

He is also a driv­ing force be­hind the 70-minute film, which ex­plores the recog­ni­tion of Bri­tish Sign Lan­guage (BSL) and deaf rights in the UK.

Dr Ri­ley said: “To see this old film footage is an emo­tional oc­ca­sion for me.

“For many years, I never re­ally knew or saw my lan­guage on screen. So to be able to sit down and see BSL on a par with any other lan­guage is a won­der­ful thing. To watch a by­gone era – one I thought was lost for­ever to the world is just mag­i­cal. This film will give the deaf com­mu­nity a feel­ing of his­tory.”

For more in­for­ma­tion or to book tick­ets for the screen­ing visit www.theg­ul­benkian.co.uk.

‘EMO­TIONAL’: Terry Ri­ley

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