Latest news

Keep up-to-date with the latest news from the Lit & Phil and its affiliates here. We are also on social media so be sure to follow us using the links at the bottom of the page.



I would like to reassure all members and guests, that we at the Lit & Phil are keeping a close ear to all the advice being given by Public Health England regarding the coronavirus infection.

Many of our attendees are not 21 anymore and would be more vulnerable to complications if they contracted the virus infection. So, as the venues we use – the RNCM and the MCC – are still open we have not yet postponed any of our upcoming meetings, the next one being on Monday 16 March (RNCM). Can I advise the following –

  • If you are feeling unwell with a cough, fever or other symptoms of a cold, please do not come to a meetings stay at home and stay indoors until well.
  • If you have been out of the country in the previous 14 days, please consider the fact you may have been to an area where there are a high number of virus infections and keep away from meetings.
  • Take extra care washing your hands, especially if you have contact with communal door handles, etc. Use hand sanitisers if you are unable to access handwashing facilities.
  • Do not greet people with handshakes, use another way.
  • Please read your emails regularly, at least daily, in case we must postpone a meeting at very short notice.
  • If you wish to cancel any bookings please do so as soon as you have decided, by email ( or phone (0161 833 4187).
  • If you need to contact the Lit & Phil office, please do so only by email or phone.  Visits to the office are now restricted to planned meetings only until further notice.
  • Consult Public Health England at for up-to-date advice.

Of course, we shall update you immediately if any meeting has to be postponed, as we have staff online every weekday, and we shall try to ensure that the speaker is given the chance to give his or her lecture at a later date.

Dr Susan Hilton, President


As part of International Women's Day 2020, this week we are celebrating 8 women that the Society is proud to have been associated with (in big or small ways). The first one is Elizabeth Percival, aunt or elder sister of one of our founders Dr Thomas Percival.

“To her he is said to have owed much”. What she did exactly to inspire such a quote we don’t know because Elizabeth’s achievements as those of so many other women were written out of history. The boy she took such care of would go on to found our Society and became rather well known for his “Medical Ethics” which you can read here:


The second woman we would like to celebrate is Lucy Winifred Faraday. Hers was the 1st paper written by a woman read to the Society in 1899. Her brother W. Barnard Faraday did the reading. A year later she became the 1st woman elected to the Society as an Ordinary Member. Her election is briefly mentioned in the Proceedings for the Annual General Meeting of 24th April 1900 but we don't seem to have on record what motivated the decision to finally admit women to the Society. Did her brother who was on the Society's Council intervene in her favour?

And this begs the question: how much knowledge, new ideas, opportunities for discussion did the Society miss by forgoing women’s ideas and works for 119 years? This is what happens when women have to wait for men’s permission to have access to spaces.


You can read Lucy's paper by clicking on the link below.



Office closure over Christmas

19th December, 2019

Please note, the Lit & Phil office is closed from 5pm on Thursday 19th December until 9am on Monday 6th January.  Here's wishing you a very merry Christmas!