Chris was delighted to give a TED talk at a TEDx Event organised along the theme of Momentum; Moving Forward, Gaining Speed and Building Traction. Chris’s talk was titled ‘Seeing isn’t Believing’ as he explained how a working class kid from the Midlands got from an underperforming comprehensive school to Cambridge University, from a rundown 25 yard swimming pool to the gold medal podium at 4 Paralympic Games, from a terraced house to the House of Lords. For Chris this path was not guided by the light afforded by sight, that sight having departed, without notice, overnight. Vision instead of sight and a clear path firmly built on the bedrock of self belief.
Watch Chris’s TED talk
TEDx Whitehall Women
Chris was honoured to be installed as Deputy Chancellor of BPP University. He is a former law student of the university and was at London’s prestigious Guildhall venue on 13th May 2016 to receive the honour during the university’s graduation ceremony. Speaking on the power of higher education, Chris said he was “honoured” to be the university’s new figurehead and “delighted to play my small part in the on-going success at BPP as the University goes from strength to strength, producing excellent graduates across the professions who will go on to make such a positive contribution to our country.” Chris gained a post graduate diploma in law (PGDL) whilst at BPP University’s Law School and in 2002 he completed the Legal Practice Course.
Chris has been announced as the keynote speaker for the Vision UK 2015 conference on Thursday 18 June 2015 at Central Hall Westminster in London.
Titled ‘Working together to deliver the UK Vision Strategy’, the seventh annual Vision UK event will feature a brand new format, with delegates able to choose from one of five conference streams, focused on delivering aspects of the UK Vision Strategy and tailored for different professional interests.
Chris strongly believes that shared space schemes which minimize demarcations between vehicles and pedestrians are dangerous. Shared space schemes remove features such as curbs, road surface markings, traffic signs, controlled crossings and regulations. In the UK, shared space schemes are increasing with many local authorities planning new schemes despite the inherent difficulties. Blind and partially sighted people have particular difficulties with the schemes but this survey also aims to generate evidence from other groups, such as other pedestrians and drivers who, anecdotally, talk of serious concerns when driving in these spaces. Thank you very much if you can spare five minutes to answer the survey.
Transport Network, ‘Paralympic champion Lord Holmes launches survey into shared space schemes‘
Transport Network, ‘Comment: Two Eyes in Inclusion’
Gloucestershire Echo, ‘Are Shared Spaces Dangerous?’
Transport Monthly, ‘Paralympic Champion and Parliamentarian Lord (Chris) Holmes launches survey to investigate public attitudes to shared space’
Facts Magazine, ‘Survey to investigate public attitudes to shared space’
Coach and Bus Week, ‘Shared space survey asks for bus drivers opinions’
Transport for all, ‘Two Eyes in Inclusion’
My Sight Nottinghamshire, ‘Have your say on shared space schemes’
Chris was at one point a lawyer specialising in pensions and was delighted to write a foreword for Michael Johnson’s excellent report for the Centre for Policy Studies, ‘Auto-protection at 55’, which considers the future of pensions and in particular the need for ‘auto-protection’ to address the dangers of ‘auto-enrolment’. Chris’s time as a pensions lawyer informs his interest in this major policy area and he was happy to endorse the report’s central theme of how to make annuity liberalisation safe. The report makes many sensible recommendations including a not for profit national annuities auction house to automate the process of shopping around. Chris feels there is clearly value in a default system for pension protection while challenging the market to produce a still better service for clients and this report is an excellent start in that direction.
Chris speaking on Pension Schemes Bill in the House of Lords
Chris travelled to Doha to take part in the Definitely Able Conference held in the amazing surroundings of the Museum of Islamic Art. Sasol and the British Council, in partnership with Qatar Museums, partnered to organise the conference and accompanying ILHAM art exhibition. The two-day Definitely Able Conference addressed the theme of ‘together enabling inclusion’, which reflects the partners’ belief that through dialogue society can become more inclusive for the benefit of all. The conference brought together an audience of more than 200 stakeholders in the disabled community, the private and public sectors.
Sasol and the British Council work together to challenge perceptions about disability.
Chris was delighted to speak at the awards ceremony for the Department for Education’s Character Awards – a national awards scheme for schools and other organisations to demonstrate their commitment to building character in young people aged 5-16. Applicants were asked to prove that their character building programme developed character traits, attributes and behaviours that underpin success in school and work such as: perseverance, resilience and grit, confidence and optimism, motivation, drive and ambition, neighbourliness and community spirit, tolerance and respect, honesty, integrity and dignity, conscientiousness, curiosity and focus. Congratulations to all the winners.
Winners of Character Awards announced