2017: Hitting the bar - How can we promote healthy drinking in sporting settings?

At our 2017 conference in Cardiff, we examined the close relationship between alcohol consumption and sport.

There are few things in Wales that unite, motivate and engage people like sport. And whether we’re a participant or a fan, whether we’re celebrating wins or commiserating losses, alcohol usually plays a key role. Many of our major sporting events are sponsored by alcohol companies, and grassroots sports clubs are often reliant on alcohol industry funding and alcohol sales at the bar.

Our one day conference asked whether it’s time to commit to a new game plan when it comes to alcohol. Delegates heared from leading experts in the field, including Dr Patrick Kenny from Dublin Institute of Technology and Dr Melanie Kingsland from the University of Newcastle, Australia, who explored the role of alcohol in sport and encouraged discussion of key questions like ‘What makes a healthy, inclusive sports club?’.

Please click below for their presentations.

Dr Pat Kenny - Dublin Institute of Technology

Dr Richard Purves - University of Stirling

Dr Carwyn Jones - Cardiff Metropolitan University

Dr Britt Hallingberg - Cardiff University

Dr Camilla Knight - Swansea University

Dr Joe Piggin - Loughborough University

Prof Shane Allwright - Trinity College Dublin

Dr Melanie Kingsland - University of Newcastle, Australia

2016: Saving lives - Understanding the links between alcohol and suicide

At our 2016 conference in Swansea we explored the complex relationship between alcohol consumption and suicide.

Each year in Wales, between 300 and 350 people die from suicide, about three times the number killed in road accidents.

Alcohol use is often implicated in suicides and non-fatal self-harm. A fifth of all suicides are thought to be from people dependent on alcohol, and heavier drinkers are significantly more likely to suffer depression and anxiety.

The one-day conference encouraged discussion of key questions including what exactly is the association between alcohol and suicide, who are the groups most at-risk, and how do we best offer support to family and friends after a suicide.

Conference delegates heard from leading experts in the field, including Dr Eve Griffin from the National Suicide Research Foundation Ireland, Dr Ann John from Swansea University and Dr Roger T Webb from the Centre for Mental Health and Safety, Manchester. 

Please click below for their presentations.

Dr Eve Griffin - National Suicide Research Foundation

Dr Ann John - Swansea University

Dr Roger T Webb - Centre of Mental Health and Safety 

Amy Chandler - University of Lincoln 

Ewan Hilton - GOFAL

Sarah Stone - Samaritans Cymru

Andrew White - Stonewall 

2015: Drinking for two - alcohol and pregnancy

Few topics in the field of alcohol policy and practice give rise to more debate than drinking during pregnancy. What is the best advice for parents? What are the risks to the unborn child? Is total abstinence really necessary, or will an occasional drink be safe?

In seeking to come up with some answers to these questions, we heard from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales, Dr Ruth Hussey OBE; Dr Therese Dowswell from Liverpool University on interventions to reduce alcohol consumption in pregnancy; and Dr Pam Lowe of Aston University, arguing against what some see as the over-policing of motherhood. You can download the key presentations here:

Dr Pam Lowe: Policing pregnancy - telling mothers what to do

Dr Lesley Smith: Attitudes and evidence

Therese Dowswell and Nancy Medley: Interventions to reduce alcohol consumption in pregnancy

Sarah Fox and Siân Phillips: Asking the awkward questions: the midwife's role

Jackie Williams and Tom Damsell: 'No alcohol, no risk' It's not just a poster!

Heather Trickey and Rachel Plachinski: Communicating with respect - Person-centered & evidence-based

Lisa Schölin: A qualitative study of new parents' views on alcohol advice during pregnancy in England and Sweden

Ann Saunders: Engaging with mothers with an established drink problem