Sign language classes being offered ahead of Deaf Academy opening

PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 January 2020

Emily Wakely, of SignUp BSL, is offering British Sign Language lessons. Picture: Deaf Academy

Emily Wakely, of SignUp BSL, is offering British Sign Language lessons. Picture: Deaf Academy


A university lecturer will be offering a two-day British Sign Language (BSL) class in Exmouth ahead of the opening of the town’s new multi-million pound Deaf Academy.

Emily Wakely, who is profoundly deaf herself, is the director of SignUp BSL and has been a partner of the academy for many years.

As part of the 'Do One Thing' fundraising campaign, the Exeter University associate lecturer will offering a level one BSL course to people interested in learning the basics in a fun and supportive environment.

She said: "I am delighted to be able to support the New Deaf Academy appeal in this way and offer some basics of BSL to the community in Exmouth.

"It is a beautiful language to learn and I aim to make the course as welcoming, fun and friendly as possible.

"Whether you wish to attend with a friend or on your own you will be most welcome and be offered lots of support in learning the basics of BSL."

The two-day course, on Saturday, February 29, and Sunday, March 1, will take place at Ocean from 10am until 4pm.

The course will consist of the BSL alphabet, greetings, numbers, the time, days of the week, weather, directions and basic conversation skills.

Refreshments will be provided and the course costs £100.

Places are limited and will be offered on a first come, first serve basis.

Sarah Shaw, fundraising appeal manager at the Deaf Academy, said: "We have had such wonderful support from the Exmouth community and I have had many people express an interest in learning some basic BSL to be able to communicate with our students and learn something new.

"I have benefitted from Emily's teaching myself, taking my BSL level one and two, with her support and she is a fantastic teacher.

"I am delighted that Emily has offered to deliver this course to support our fundraising appeal and provide some fantastic BSL training to the community in Exmouth."

For more information, or to secure your place contact Shelley at the Deaf Academy on 01392 267019 or email

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