Staff, students, alumni and guests congregated in Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park in early June to mark CREES's 50th anniversary.

In addition to an array of presentations covering developments in the region from political, economic, historical, sociological and cultural perspectives from leading figures in the field such as Richard Sakwa, Luke March, Phil Hanson, Edwin Bacon, Silvana Malle and Roy Allison, the specially expanded annual conference included a talk by Ron Amman, former CREES director, who went on to head the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and was a Permanent Secretary to the Cabinet Office during Tony Blair’s premiership.

Littered with amusing anecdotes it highlighted not just his fascinating career, but showed the rigorous training, ability to see through ideological smoke and the attitude to the importance of collecting reliable empirical data he had acquired during his time at CREES had proven to be an invaluable set of tools for his subsequent jobs.

As CREES Director Dr Tim Haughton who organised the event commented, however, the highlight for all participants was the cutting of the birthday cake by the founding director of CREES, Professor Bob Davies.

Listen to some of ouralumni and staff members thoughts on the CREES Annual Conference 2013.