Tea-rific educator from Lancashire brews up a royal invite to Buckingham Palace!

A member of the Lancashire Adult Learning (LAL) teaching team found herself rubbing shoulders with royalty last week as she was invited to King Charles III’s first Buckingham Palace Garden Party since his coronation. 

Sarah Haworth, the Head of Curriculum for Health and Wellbeing, Horticulture, Family Learning, Art & Humanities at Lancashire Adult Learning received a nomination from Holex, the lead professional body for Adult Community Education and Learning to attend the party last Tuesday.  

Sarah, who took her mother along with her, enjoyed afternoon tea in the gardens of Buckingham Palace, on what turned out to be a lovely May afternoon. The event took place a mere three days after the King’s Coronation celebrations. Sarah and her mother had the honour of mingling with the Prince and Princess of Wales, as well as many other distinguished guests. 

When asked about the once-in-a-lifetime experience, Sarah said: “I felt extremely honoured to be nominated by Holex and receive an invite to attend the garden party.  

“This was an incredible opportunity, and it was wonderful to share it with my Mum who is 76 and a huge fan of the Royal Family. On the day there were 8,000 attendees who had each been invited in recognition of the positive impact they have made in their community, and it was wonderful to meet some of these people and share stories. Attending this event for me, served as a reminder of all the good that happens every day in so many ways and that the world is an incredible place full of kind and selfless people, which can sometimes be hard to focus on with the volume of negative press that can surround us daily.” 

Sarah’s invitation to the palace was in recognition of her outstanding contributions to adult community education in Lancashire, both through her work at LAL and within National forums. 

In March 2022, alongside her team of fantastic colleagues, Sarah played a key role in the College Group and LAL achieving an “Outstanding” grade with Ofsted, the UK government’s education watchdog. Since then, good practice has been shared to the wider Adult Community Learning sector through Holex to its members. LAL, as a member of the Nelson and Colne College Group, is the only Further Education College in Lancashire to hold the “Outstanding” title. 

Due to the efforts of hard working and committed educators such as Sarah, LAL is now also the number one provider of adult education in the whole of Lancashire, according to the governments most recent National Achievement Rate Tables (NART) – and second in the entire country!  

LAL’s success in engaging adults into education and training opportunities through its innovative curriculum has made a real difference in the lives of countless individuals across Lancashire, and Sarah’s contributions have been integral to this achievement. Her expertise and dedication have ensured that LAL continues to be a pioneer in the field, providing high-quality education that meets the needs of its students and the wider community. 

The recognition that Sarah has received is a testament to the hard work, dedication, and vision of herself and of likeminded individuals at LAL. With Sarah’s contributions, LAL will continue to be at the forefront of promoting health and wellbeing through education, setting an example for other providers to follow. 

“Sarah’s invitation is a testament to her excellent work at the national policy level, which has helped LAL lead the way and influence national policy.” said Andrew Parkin, the Assistant Principal for Adult Learning at the Nelson & Colne College Group. 

Furthermore, Tracey Baron; Deputy Principal for Curriculum and Quality at Nelson and Colne College Group said:

“Sarah consistently goes above and beyond to bring first steps learning and qualifications for adults across the county.  The huge impact that Sarah and her team have in contributing to the health and wellbeing agenda of Lancashire County Council and also providing professional development routes for adult returners is phenomenal!” 

Every journey starts with a first step – from learner to employed in 6 days!

As one of the UK’s largest Adult Community Learning Providers, Lancashire Adult Learning (LAL) aims to provide learning opportunities for all adults across the region, from all walks and stages of life, to learn something new and shape their own futures.

FREE pre-employment training

In collaboration with Rossendale Borough Council, Active Lancashire and Lancashire Adult Learning, local employer Interfloor (highly successful flooring underlay manufacturer) welcomed learners at their factory based in Haslingden to provide the fantastic opportunity for FREE pre-employment training with guaranteed interviews on completion of the course.

With committed attendance for the full 6-day accredited programme, the aim was for learners to achieve positions at the company on successful completion.

A fantastic opportunity

The 6-day accredited programme provided the opportunity for learners to gain experience and training PLUS a chance to gain a qualification. The fully supported training programme provided by Lancashire Adult Learning included:

  • Personal action planning to match the learner’s skills to a job role
  • Be Successful Level 1, aiding learners to overcome challenges in the workplace
  • Equality & Diversity Level 1
  • Health & Safety in the workplace Level 1
  • First Aid (Lancashire Life Savers) in the workplace
  • Manual Handling training
  • CV and Interview masterclass
  • Employer training and factory tours
  • Mock interviews and feedback
  • Final interview (Day 6)

On speaking to learner Kevin Robinson on why he was completing the training, he said “Attending the training at Interfloor has given me the brilliant opportunity to branch out and gain new skills.”

Tom Gee, Head of Curriculum Employability, Volunteering and Skills said “Lancashire Adult Learning is proud to work collaboratively with Rossendale Borough Council, Active Lancashire and Interfloor to deliver this Pre-Employment Programme. Our passionate and talented teachers have worked hard with the learners and we are delighted that there have been three offers of employment following interview.”

Believing that empowering people to learn is at the heart of helping communities thrive, Lancashire Adult Learning offers an extensive range of subjects to learners, with over 2000 courses delivered through more than 300 venues across Lancashire as well as online.

Did you know?

No experience is necessary for our Employability courses. If you are ready to learn to gain employment, find out more about our employability courses here. Most courses are FREE!


Photo: Craig Harrison – Lancashire Adult Learning – Trainer, Daniel Mottershead – learner, Kevin Robinson – learner

Changing lives through an updated curriculum

Raising Awareness around Breast Cancer in Pregnancy

Lancashire Adult Learning (LAL) came across Roisin Pelan’s social media campaign about her incredibly brave battle with breast cancer during her pregnancy.

Nicola Hall, Director – Curriculum Innovation & Partnerships was instantly compelled to reach out and discover how LAL could assist and support Roisin to reach even more people and consequently set out to update the curriculum of LAL’s health courses.

Nicola said “Breast Cancer affects 1 in 7 women, but with early detection it can be treated effectively. We are perfectly positioned at Lancashire Adult Learning to help raise awareness of the importance of self-examination. Roisin – breast cancer kicker and the founder of www.FightyPants.com is from my hometown of Preston and we are delighted to be working alongside her on this campaign.”

Lancashire Adult Learning deliver a variety of Health Literacy courses. The ‘Screening for Prevention & Good Health’ course aims to increase learners’ knowledge about the importance of health screening, and the main screening programmes available. For learners where English is a second language, it provides the opportunity to enhance their language skills and with this enhanced knowledge and confidence, they are then better prepared to deal with health conditions and take responsibility for looking after themselves and their family.

Sarah Haworth, Head of Curriculum – Health and Wellbeing said “By embedding key messages about breast cancer within our curriculum We hope to not only raise further awareness, but help to normalise conversations about cancer so people are confident to carry out self-examination and follow up anything they feel unsure about with their GP. Early detection is vital and can result in effective treatment that can save lives.”

Roisin’s important campaign has also led her to work closely with East Lancashire Hospital Trust (ELHT). Roisin said “The close partnership between ELTH and LAL signifies a change in the way of early detection of breast cancer – through a combination of clinical and academic means. Its work will educate both midwives and new or expecting mums and open up the conversation about breast cancer in pregnancy.”

Read more about Roisin’s personal journey, read her wonderful Blogs and watch her amazing daughter Ivy share her own perspective here.

Photo: Roisin Pelan and Sarah Haworth at Haslam Park in Preston “Kicking Cancer’s Ass!”

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