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The function of the Religious Experience Research Centre is the study of contemporary spiritual and religious experience.  It is situated at the University of Wales, Lampeter, together with its archive of accounts of spiritual experiences and specialist library

The Research Centre was founded by Sir Alister Hardy in 1969 as the Religious Experience Research Unit at Manchester College, Oxford. It moved to Lampeter from its previous home at Westminster College, Oxford in July 2000.

The Centre’s aim is to study, in a disciplined and as scientific a manner as possible, contemporary accounts of religious or spiritual experiences and to publish its findings.

Trinity and Lampeter welcome £14.3 million funding boost for new university.

University of Wales Lampeter and Trinity University College Carmarthen have today welcomed the news that Education Minister Jane Hutt has approved a £14.3 million funding package in support of their proposed merger which would create a brand new university in South West Wales.

The creation of University of Wales Trinity Saint David will build upon the heritage and strengths of Wales’s two oldest institutions, and will go towards providing enhanced facilities and resources for students and communities in the region.

The £14.3 million funding award from the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) will ensure that the new university can respond to the economic and social needs of Wales.  In particular it will enable the University to address skills needs through the creation of a number of initiatives including a public services academy, a skills technium and a centre for rural health and social care.  The University of Wales Trinity Saint David will build upon existing partnerships with key agencies including further education colleges and schools to transform the provision of education and training across the region.

The new university will provide bilingual higher education opportunities to a diverse student base .  A programme of investment will now see the development of enhanced facilities at both campuses, and staff at both Trinity University College and UW Lampeter are already working closely with each other to bring the functions of the two universities together as they prepare to complete the merger by July 2010 in time to welcome the first students in September 2010.

Dr Medwin Hughes, Vice Chancellor Designate of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David

Dr Medwin Hughes, Vice Chancellor Designate of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and Vice Chancellor of University Wales Lampeter and Trinity University College said: “We are delighted with today’s news. The collaboration between two of Wales’s oldest institutions will create an exciting and vibrant university not only for students in Wales but also from the UK, and the rest of the world.

“With its home in South West Wales but with an offer that will have an international appeal, University of Wales Trinity Saint David will be nationally rooted but in a global context.

“This is history in the making, which will not only create a powerhouse for education in South West Wales but will also bring a much needed boost to the regional economy.

“Through building on the strengths and heritage of Trinity and Lampeter, and enhancing facilities, courses and academy programmes across both campuses, University of Wales Trinity Saint David has an exciting and vibrant future, and it is set to become an internationally acclaimed higher education establishment.”


Dr John Walters, Vice Chair Trinity Council, The Venerable Randolph Thomas, Chair Trinity Council, Dr Medwin Hughes, Mrs Tricia Carter, Chair UW Lampeter and Dr Brinley Jones, President UW Lampeter.


The creation of the new university is subject to Privy Council approval, which is expected in the New Year.

Applications for University of Wales Trinity Saint David for the academic year 2010/2011 will be made through existing routes for study at Lampeter and Trinity.

For further information, please contact:

For further information, please contact:

Dr Jane Norris-Hill
Direct Tel: 01570 424799
Email: [email protected]
University of Wales, Lampeter, Ceredigion. SA48 7ED


Eleri Beynon
Direct Tel: 01267 676790
Email: [email protected]
Trinity University College, Carmarthen, SA31 3EP

The Centre’s findings are published in books, reports, articles, occasional papers etc. the most important being, The Spiritual Nature of Man by Sir Alister Hardy, Exploring Inner Space and Religious Experience Today by David Hay, The Original Vision and Living the Questions by Edward Robinson and A Sense of Presence by Timothy Beardsworth. These are obtainable by purchase, or on loan, from the Centre. To see a full list, click on Publications and Books link

Research Projects completed or sponsored by the Centre include:

w Religious Experience as Liberation –  Dr. David Hay
w Religious Experience in Childhood –  Edward Robinson
w Religion and Values at 16 Plus –  Edward Robinson & Dr. Michael Jackson
w Psychosis and Religious Experience –  Dr. Michael Jackson
w Spiritual/Religious Experience in
Modern Society
–  Dr. Geoffrey Ahern
w Environmental Influences on the
Nature of Religious Experience
–  William Ord
w The Relation of Functional Theology –  Dr. Newton Malony
w Negative Religious Experiences –  Dr. Merete Jakobsen

Current Projects/Initiatives include:

A study of the common features and common outcomes of spiritual/religious experience across religious traditions.
A study of the results of spiritual and religious experience.
Educational programmes, and a programme of lectures and workshops across the UK which increase awareness of research into spirituality and religious experience.
Running an MA course in Religious Experience in conjunction with the University of Wales, Lampeter [see M.A. Course]. The course can be residential in Lampeter or taken part-time at a distance.

The Centre welcomes accounts of spiritual/religious experiences (however people define these terms). Send an account of your experience to the Director of the RERC [address, click on Contacts]. All accounts are treated in confidence. Give as much information as possible, including what you think might have led to and/or ‘triggered’ the experience(s), when (including date if possible) and where you had the experience(s) and how it/they may have affected you subsequently. Please include, also, some personal details, eg. about your age at the time, religious upbringing and affiliation (if any) and anything else which you might think relevant.