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5 speakers 15 minutes each
Tue 1st May 2012
Terry Waite is a humanitarian and author who previously worked as a hostage negotiator in the 1980s. He was Archbishop of Canterbury Robert Runcie's Assistant for Anglican Communion Affairs in the 1980s. As an envoy for the Church of England, he travelled to Lebanon to try to secure the release of four hostages including journalist John McCarthy. On 20 January 1987, he was taken hostage. Waite remained in captivity for 1,763 days, the first four years of which were spent in total solitary confinement, and it was not until 18 November 1991 that he was released. Following his release, he wrote the book Taken on Trust which became an international bestseller, as did his second book, Footfalls in Memory. Waite is also president of the charity, Y Care International (the YMCA's international development and relief agency), and patron of AbleChildAfrica and Habitat for Humanity Great Britain. He is also president of Emmaus UK, a charity for formerly homeless people.
Chris Moore, before joining The Clink Charity in 2010, worked for Fenwick Ltd as head of group restaurants for which he created and operated 37 restaurants over 12 UK sites. The Clink Restaurant operates within HMP High Down and is pioneering a scheme that aims to reduce the number of re-offenders by equipping prisoners with qualifications, skills and real restaurant and kitchen experience whilst they serve their time so that can be put to use once released.
Nikita Lalwani was born in India and brought up in Cardiff. Her first novel, Gifted, was released in 2007. It was long-listed for the Man Booker Prize and short-listed for the Costa First Novel Award. In 2008 Lalwani was nominated for the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year. She has previously contributed to the Guardian, the New Statesman and the Observer. In 2008 she also contributed to AIDS Sutra: Untold Stories from India. She also works with the Dalit Foundation to champion support for caste and gender equality in India, Liberty and The Lawyer’s Collective.
Noel 'Razor' Smith was born in South London and first became acquainted in crime and developed a hatred of the police after being violently attacked. After going into prison, he became more entangled in a criminal lifestyle and he went on to spend most of his adult life inside for a range of crimes including armed robbery. Smith was largely uneducated but he went on to teach himself to read and write while on the inside, entering prison story competitions and after some time coming to the attention of the author Will Self. He managed to secure a publishing contract for his first book A Loaded Gun. It wasn't until after the death of his son, (he missed the funeral as he wasn't allowed out of prison to attend) that Smith really decided to reform his ways, voluntarily entering an intensive rehabilitation programme. Smith has managed to turn his life around and is now the Editor of Inside Time.