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Charity investing in talented scientists to boost hearing research in the UK

Action on Hearing Loss has launched a new initiative to support the early careers of scientists working towards new treatments and cures for hearing loss and tinnitus. This follows the merger with Deafness Research UK.

The new Pauline Ashley Awards are now open to applications from research scientists in the UK aiming to further their careers in hearing loss research. The research grants have been established in memory of Lady Ashley of Stoke who co-founded Deafness Research UK along with her husband Lord Ashley of Stoke.

Scientists from across the country can apply for funding to support research projects that will generate data to strengthen future applications for long term funding from national funding agencies.

Caroline Ashley, daughter of Lady Ashley said: ‘My Dad, Jack Ashley, described hearing loss as being like a bird, suddenly shuttered into a glass cage. He could watch the busy world go by, cut-off from its conversations and cadence. The family, and particularly my Mum, Pauline, witnessed the devastation of deafness and the massive energy and resilience required to keep going, keep up company, in the face of isolation.

‘Thankfully research into hearing loss bears fruit: cochlear implants provide some sound for some people. But so much more research is needed to find causes and cures. The Pauline Ashley grants will help ensure new talent is cultivated, building our chance for long-term treatment for all affected by hearing loss.’

Dr Sohaila Rastan, Executive Director of Biomedical Research at Action on Hearing Loss said: ‘As a result of merging with Deafness Research UK we are delighted to be able to support talented new scientists in the field of hearing loss research through the Pauline Ashley Grants Scheme. This is a great opportunity for researchers at the start of their careers and for scientists changing fields who often struggle to secure long term funding from the main national funders.’

To apply for the Pauline Ashley Small Grants Scheme, please visit www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk/Ashleygrants


On 31st March 2013 Deafness Research UK merged with Action on Hearing Loss (formerly the RNID, registered charity numbers 207720 England and Wales and SC038926 Scotland) with the aim of increasing awareness of and support for research into hearing loss and tinnitus. Deafness Research UK was set up in 1985 by the late Lord Ashley of Stoke and Lady Ashley of Stoke.

For more information about Action on Hearing Loss’s Biomedical Research programme, visit, www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk/biomedicalresearch
All applications must be received on or before Monday 15 July 2013 (5pm GMT). Further details can be requested further details, telephone 020 7296 8233 or email research@hearingloss.org.uk 

The scheme will support projects up to £30,000 and will be run twice yearly and as always, eligible proposals will be peer-reviewed by experts in the respective fields and ranked by an advisory panel, to be chaired by Professor Alan Palmer, Director of MRC Institute of Hearing Research, Nottingham. Applications are invited from areas including:

- medical devices, improved benefit from hearing aids and cochlear implants

- treatments to protect or restore hearing

- diagnosis of hearing loss

- treatments for middle ear conditions (such as glue ear)

- central auditory processing disorders

- tinnitus.

Deadlines - First round Application deadline Monday 15 July 2013 at 5.00pm GMT - Final decision: October 2013. Second round Application deadline: November 2013 Final decision: February 2014

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