FEASTED | Opposites Attract


7.00pm – doors open 6:30pm at Wade Conference Centre

Tuesday 25 April 2023

Tickets £80.00 per person

Free Car Parking


They say opposites attract…

Gastronomy and food poverty are far more connected than we like to think. The distancing of these apparent opposing contexts has served it’s time as we look towards the future of our city.

Cris is sharing the F E A S T E D vision for food in the city of Stoke on Trent. It’s more than exclusive dining experiences, although they should be part of what the city has to offer.

The evening is to showcase how the aspirations of our young people, gastronomy and how we feed the most disadvantaged can be combined to create a better food system in the city.

  • Hosted by Cris and we will be joined by guest speakers.

  • Champagne & canapés on arrival and other surprises

  • Sponsored by KMF, The Hubb Foundation with more to be announced

Ticket enquiries:
Telephone: 01782 714 888
or at the NSMI Wade Conference Centre Reception

Read More

Elvis Evening


7.30pm – doors open 6:30pm at Wade Conference Centre

Saturday 20 May 2023

Tickets £7.00 per person

Free Car Parking

An evening with Elvis live on stage

Mark Clay has been performing as the Elvis,the king of rock and roll for 25 years, splitting his time between the stage and the Saverley Green farm where he lives and works.

Elvis tribute Mark Clay, will perform a selection of his hits in his famous jumpsuit, including Suspicious Minds, Devil in Disguise, The Wonder of You and All Shook Up performing live on-stage for a fantastic Vegas-style night of entertainment.

Ticket enquiries:
Telephone: 01782 714 888
or at the NSMI Wade Conference Centre Reception

Read More

Keele student showcase highlights the future of medical research

Events , Grants , Research , Wade Conference Centre

Student doctors had the chance to present their research to leading academics in a showcase event at Keele University.

The ASPIRE Research Showcase – supported by the North Staffordshire Medical Institute and led by Professor Divya Chari – is designed to give the medical researchers of the future the chance to show off their ideas and develop their presentation skills.

This year’s event on Wednesday, November 22nd featured talks and poster displays from 37 medical school undergraduates.

Institute chairman Shaughn O’Brien said: “I was so impressed with the professionalism, eloquence and obvious intelligence of the ASPIRE students and the content of their presentations and posters.

“These are obviously the medical academics of the future and the sooner they can aim their careers in that direction the better.”

The event has taken place annually since 2013 and was recently awarded Institute funding of £15,000 a year, guaranteed for at least five years.

Guest Speakers

This year’s programme included talks by Obstetrics and Gynaecology lecturer Dr Pensee Wu and infectious diseases expert Dr Andrew Ustianowski.

Professor O’Brien added: “The collaboration between the Institute and the Medical School is proving to be very fruitful.

“This is very good use of the charitable donations that the Institute receives and awards.”

Students presented their research on a wide range of subjects including concussion education in elite rugby, the effect of marital status on the risk of cardiovascular disease and the role of genetics in mental illness.

The prize for the best oral presentation was awarded to Jessica Green for her research into preventing intestinal blockages in cystic fibrosis patients.

Meanwhile Will Woods won the best poster award for his work on using chick embryos as models for spinal cord injury research.


The initiative is one of several organised by the NSMI in partnership with Keele University and the University Hospital of the North Midlands NHS Trust.

It has also collaborated with the trust to organise their annual Firelighter awards, taking place for the second time  in spring 2018.

Staff from all over the UHNM will be invited to submit their ideas for new research projects, with the winners to be chosen in a Dragon’s Den-style event.

The Institute is currently considering applications for its next round of pump-priming grants to kickstart new research projects, with the winners due to be announced in February.

ASPIRE is an Academy of Medical Sciences and Wellcome Trust-funded programme that helps medical students to engage with medical research.

It also supports a student-led research network and provides holiday bursaries for students to undertake summer research projects at Keele.

Read More

Physics star Jim Al-Khalili is a quantum hit at the North Staffs Medical Institute

Events , Wade Conference Centre

By Meg Jorsh

TV physicist Jim Al-Khalili revealed the baffling world of quantum biology in a talk at the North Staffordshire Medical Institute.

The BBC star – best known for his Radio 4 show The Life Scientific – joked if the insanely complex subject did not give his listeners a headache, he would not have been doing his job.

Professor Al-Khalili spoke to a sold-out audience of 150 at the medical research charity’s 48th annual Wade Lecture.

He told them: “If you haven’t got a headache then clearly you don’t understand quantum mechanics. If you think ‘maybe I’ve got it’ then you haven’t. It’s meant to be confusing.”

Prof Al-Khalili explained that the quantum theory of physics, when applied to biology, could potentially reveal how the atoms in animals and plants behave differently to those in inanimate objects.

But he admitted the new field – which looks at the behaviour of subatomic particles – was a controversial topic for many traditional biologists.

He added: “Quantum biology is still in its infancy; it’s still speculative. Quantum mechanics is weird and very sensitive, it’s hard to understand and biology is complicated enough as well.

“There’s still widespread scepticism among biologists, mainly surrounding the question of ‘so what?’

“It does seem that there are some mechanisms within living cells that need some help from the quantum world, but we don’t know how this happens.

“To observe quantum mechanics in the non-living world you need to cool things down to near-absolute zero in a vacuum and even then the quantum effects don’t last very long.

“Has nature hit upon shortcuts to give it an advantage? Can we learn from nature to develop new or more efficient quantum devices?”

Having wrapped up his hour-long presentation, the popular scientist stopped to sign autographs and take selfies with dozens of fans.

Prof. Al-Khalili, who was awarded an OBE in 2008, explained that respect for his audience was key to his success as a science broadcaster.

He said: “I’m of a generation when I first started doing science communication it was just becoming acceptable for science researchers to talk to the public. Before that you had to do one or the other.

“Richard Dawkins, brilliant though he is, once he wrote The Selfish Gene he was no longer seen as an academic. But people like me and like Professor Brian Cox, I still spend half my time at the University of Surrey, I still have PhD students, I still publish papers. It was still only my generation that it’s become acceptable to do both.

“Public engagement in science acknowledges that it has to be a two-way process. Part of that is acknowledging that the audience you talk to is no less clever than you, they’ve just not devoted their lives to studying this stuff.

“I couldn’t perform an operation – I can’t even do my own bank statements.”

The professor, who still spends half of his time teaching at the University of Surrey, later joined Institute members, staff and supporters for a formal dinner.

He decided to attend in part because he had never visited Stoke before.

“So far it’s been very pleasant,” he added. “If tonight is indicative of the good people of Stoke then it’s a lovely place.”

Institute bosses hope to welcome Professor Al-Khalili back in 2021 to speak at a series of talks planned for the Year of Culture.

The event on Thursday, October 5th, came just a week after the Institute’s annual awards evening, at which more than £100,000 was handed over to top local researchers.

The money will be used to fund groundbreaking studies into a range of health conditions, including childhood asthma and sleep apnoea, lung disease and brain injuries.

Experts in prostate and bladder cancer, bowel disease and health literacy will also profit from the funding injection.

The North Staffordshire Medical Institute, based on Hartshill Road, Stoke, is a medical charity funded by public donations and the revenue from its purpose-built conference facilities.

For more information about their work, visit https://nsmedicalinstitute.co.uk/, like them on Facebook @nsmedicalinstitute or follow them on Twitter @nsccentre.

Read More

Success at the NSMI Research Awards Presentation Evening

Events , Medical Awards , Wade Conference Centre

More than £100,000 was handed to top local researchers at the annual North Staffordshire Medical Institute awards evening.

The money will be used to fund groundbreaking studies into a range of health conditions, including childhood asthma and sleep apnoea, lung disease and brain injuries.

Experts in prostate and bladder cancer, bowel disease and health literacy will also profit from the charity’s funding injection.

Chairman Professor Shaughn O’Brien announced the projects that had made it through an exhaustive selection process at the Institute’s headquarters in Hartshill Road, Stoke-on-Trent.

He gave out the awards in front of invited guests including the cream of North Staffordshire’s scientific and medical community. Also present was Paul Williams, who is leading Stoke-on-Trent’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021.

Paediatrician Dr Will Carroll, based at the University Hospitals of the North Midlands (UHNM), was leading a study that received £19,244 to investigate the link between vitamin D deficiency and childhood asthma.

He believes it will show that children with healthy vitamin D levels are less likely to have asthma attacks.

He said: “As you know, vitamin D is the answer to everything and it’s as easy as going out into the sunshine. But to prove it we’re going to have to do a randomised controlled trial.”

His colleague Dr Martin Samuels, a fellow paediatrician, received £20,000 for his research into obstructive sleep apnoea in children.

He said: “We’re going to look at a very large database of several thousand studies to see if we can better find out how to make the diagnosis.

“There’s a lot of controversy about this at the moment and whether children need to have their tonsils and adenoids taken out.”

Dr Paul Campbell, a disease control expert from Keele University, collected £14,769 towards a study into public health literacy.

He said: “What we want to do is to identify people who have got low levels of health literacy within general practice. We want to find an algorithm to flag up to a GP that they may need to change their consultation.

“We’re going to look at a medical records data set and thankfully the medical institute have pump-primed us to do that.”

Researcher Dr Abigail Rutter received £18,000 towards a study into pleural effusion – known as ‘water on the lungs’ – which can be a symptom of a wide range of health problems. She plans to analyse the fluid using cutting-edge SIFT-MS technology.

She said: “We’re going to take the fluid and effectively ‘smell it’ and hopefully we will be able to make a non-invasive diagnosis from the results.”

Mark Kitchen, a urology lecturer at Keele University, received £4,200 towards designing a urine test for prostate and bladder cancers.

He said: “We’re effectively looking for non-invasive biomarkers for cancers.”

Awards of just almost £26,000 in total were announced for the winners of the Institute’s Firelighter Awards, held in collaboration with the Research and Development Department at UHNM.

Staff at the trust were invited to submit their research ideas to a Dragon’s Den-style panel of experts who would then award grants of up to £10,000 for the best projects.

Consultant gastroenterologist Adam Farmer collected the awards on behalf of the three winners – doctors Arun Kurup, Stuart Harrison and Jackie Mclennan.

He said: “We invited applications from across the trust and I’m pleased to say that we awarded three prizes for projects which we felt would have a direct clinical impact in the near future.”

Dr Kurup will be researching bowel disease, Dr Harrison traumatic brain injuries and Dr Mclennan nosebleeds.

The North Staffordshire Medical Institute is a medical charity funded by public donations and the revenue from its purpose-built conference facilities.

For more information about our work, visit https://nsmedicalinstitute.co.uk/, like us on Facebook @nsmedicalinstitute or follow us on Twitter @nsccentre.


Read More

Institute chairman exhibits sculptures in London

Events , Wade Conference Centre

Institute chairman Professor Shaughn O’Brien is set to show off one of his lesser-known talents at a major London art show.

The renowned obstetrician will unveil three of his sculptures at the Royal Society of Medicine in London as part of the Medical Art Society’s annual exhibition. His haunting figures and abstract works draw inspiration from his medical background.

Prof. O’Brien, who is Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Keele University Medical School, has dedicated Fridays to his artistic passion for the last three years. His works on display at the RSM include a bronze portrait of a young woman and a second bronze piece inspired by the Mozart opera La Finta Giardiniera.

He will also be showing a plaster model called ‘Imaginary Public Commission for Stoke-on-Trent Year of Culture 2021.’

The art show comes just a fortnight after Prof O’Brien addressed doctors from the country in a lecture at the RSM called Premenstrual Syndrome – All You Need To Know. It covered his latest research into the subject, new disorder classifications and treatment guidelines.

The Medical Art Society was formed in 1935 to celebrate the work of doctors who paint, draw and sculpt in their spare time. It’s annual exhibition took place this year in the RSM’s atrium from Monday, July 24th to Saturday, July 29th.

Read More