Honour for Prof. Brian Groombridge

The ECA’s congratulates its President Emeritus on his election to the International Adult & Continuing Education Hall of Fame.


Professor Brian Groombridge has been named as one of the twelve inductees into the Hall of Fame’s Class of 2009.


The Hall of Fame was founded in 1995 by Thurman White to honour leaders in the field of continuing education and adult learning as well as serving as a record and inspiration for the next generation of education leaders.


Election to the Hall is an acknowledgement of the distinguished contribution to the field of adult and continuing education. Each inductee has provided a crucial nexus between resources and learner and have left lasting impressions on the students, institutions and organisations they have served.


Brian is currently the President Emeritus of the ECA and over many decades has been a member of various ECA committees and in the words of the IACE has ‘helped turn the Educational Centres Association into a formidable advocacy body’


His professional contribution as an adult educator spans an unusually comprehensive range of roles as a student, tutor, program organizer, centre principal, researcher, broadcaster, communication pioneer, academic and, in retirement, active citizen.


His adult education career began with creative periods as warden/principal of two independent adult education centres—at Letchworth and Rugby in England. It has included spells as a researcher and deputy secretary of the National Institute of Adult Education, head of Educational Program Services of the Independent Broadcasting Authority, professor of Adult Education and director of the Department of Extra-Mural Studies at the University of London.


His international work helped to shape the European Broadcasting Union’s adult education programming, through which he was able to develop close links with Finnish university adult education; the University of Helsinki awarded him an honorary degree. Later work with the Finnish Institute in London led to the award of Knight of the White Rose of Finland in 1990.


Brian says that one of the joys of his career has been the opportunities it has given him to be a learner. That certainly applied when he co-founded the U3A (University of the 3rd Age) in the UK and became the first chairman of the ‘U3A in London.’


After retirement he has continued to write, to organize and to campaign for the rights of adults, bringing flair and distinction to everything he does. He co-planned Brighton’s national arts festival in 2006; that year it focused on older people and he gave a keynote lecture about the arts and learning in later life and has argued tirelessly for 50 years on behalf of older learners, and continues to influence public policy in his 80s. He participated in a variety of roles in the UK Government’s “Better Government for Older People” initiative.


More details of Brian’s career can be found by clicking here.


Date Added: November 17th 2009