Womens Institute
Meeting Reports 2018
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January 2018

President, Elaine Barker, wished everyone a Happy New Year and gave a particularly warm welcome to the speaker, Maralyn Jenkins, who was ably assisted by her two very well-behaved companions, Chihuahua’s Jumbo and Nellie.


All three are volunteers with Pets as Therapy, which is a community based Animal Assisted Therapy charity operating across the length and breadth of the UK. It was founded in 1983 by Lesley Scott-Ordish and is the largest of its kind in Europe Maralyn now also “vets” new owners and dogs who wish to join.


Thousands of people of all ages benefit every week from the visits provided by the PAT Volunteer Teams, who visit residential homes, hospitals, hospices, schools, day care centres and prisons. Their newest project is helping to improve literacy in children by developing their confidence, interest and enjoyment in reading through their read2dogs scheme.


Maralyn said that it was a most rewarding experience seeing the positive response that “man’s best friend” can make to many different people in a great variety of circumstances. There are now approximately 5,000 dogs and 100 cats (plus owners) volunteering and it was inspirational to hear all the different stories.


After a delicious tea and chat, the meeting continued. Jill Morton was warmly welcomed back after a long absence through injury. Vanessa has resigned from the Committee and thanks were given for all her contributions. Best wishes were sent to Christine, who is returning to the Committee, but unfortunately was unable to attend as she had slipped on ice and broken her wrist.


Everyone had a lovely time at the Christmas party with lively entertainment and a delicious meal, again provided by Morreen, who is now retiring. Elaine thanked all those who had helped set up the tables with decorations. Suggestions were requested for replacement caterers for this year’s Xmas party.


A thank you letter had been received from The Pepper Foundation for the donation of £680 given to them last November. It was agreed that the charity for the present year is to be in memory of Doreen White, whose daughter suggested The Small Project Scannappeal Scheme, which raises funds to purchase life-saving equipment for Amersham, Stoke Mandeville, Wycombe and Community Hospitals.


There are still spaces in the two Board Game sessions which are held in members’ homes. On 7th March the BFWI are holding their now annual Investigation and Discovery Day in Aylesbury from 10-4pm. This is always an excellent science themed event. Tickets are £14.


One free Delegate ticket is available for the BFWI Annual Council Meeting in Aylesbury from 10.30-4pm on 18th April. In the evening of 18th April, Hyde Heath are hosting the Spring Beechwood Meeting at 7.45pm. Also, it is our turn to send a Link Delegate to the NFWI Annual meeting which is being held in Cardiff on 5th and 6th June. Ticket, travel on the Federation coach and overnight accommodation is free.


Elaine introduced the five shortlisted Resolutions proposed for the 2018 NFWI Annual Meeting, then Members selected individual Resolutions which will go forward to the Annual Meeting in June.


The next meeting will be at 8pm on 8th February when Sandra Telford will talk about “Colour, Style & Confidence”. The competition will be “Something colourful



Gillian O'Flynn

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February 2018

On a very cold evening a warm welcome was given to all members by President, Elaine Barker. Several people were unable to attend, and thanks were given to Mary Collins and Gillian O’Flynn for their help.


Details of fund raising events for both the Scannappeal Charity and the Institutes’ funds were given. The Charity Evening Ramble and Supper will be on 4th July, the Summer barbeque will be on 9 August, and Joyce Guthrie has very kindly agreed to hold a tea party at her home in the early summer. Other fundraising ideas would be gratefully received.


A free delegate’s ticket for the BFWI Annual Council Meeting in Aylesbury on 18th April is still available. Avril Sherratt will be our delegate attending the WI Annual Meeting in Cardiff on 5/6 June.


Volunteers to make up a team of three were requested for the BFWI Quiz on 27th March being held in Prestwood.


National Women’s Day will be on Sunday 11th March in Maidenhead to discuss “What have we achieved”.


The Beechwood Group Spring meeting is being held in Hyde Heath at 7.45 for 8pm on 18th April when Patricia Purcell will talk about “Tales of the Opera”.


Sue Flint, who trains Hearing Dogs, thanked everyone for saving stamps over several years for the Charity, but they are now no longer collecting them.


Sandra Telford then gave a talk on “Colour, Style & Confidence”. After a career in sales and marketing, including helping at the London Olympics in 2012, she took voluntary redundancy but after a year was looking for a new challenge.


A friend gave her a personal colour and style consultation and asked if she would be interested in a position with the organisation, Colour me Beautiful, who are the leading colour consultants in Europe and are also worldwide. Sandra is now an award-winning consultant.


Wearing the right styles and colours gives everyone, including men, confidence. It was most enlightening when Sandra selected various members to show which colour ranges flattered them most. She also gave advice about what styles suited different shaped people.


The next meeting will be at 8pm on 8th March when Tony Mealing will talk about “Punch and Judy”. The competition will be “A Puppet”.

Gillian O'Flynn
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March 2018

Unfortunately, along with several members, the Punch and Judy speaker was ill and unable to attend the March meeting.

However, President, Elaine Barker, stood in and gave a very interesting and amusing talk entitled “You Never know what you will find at the bottom of your garden”.

She spoke about her childhood living in Hanger Lane when some of the old West Twyford village fields still remained, and we could see from her photos and postcards how lovely the now built-up area used to be. Elaine then produced a surprise, a quarter jaw of an elephant found in her family’s back garden, probably a landowner’s status symbol from colonial times!

The members then took part in a fun Cryptic Quiz that Felicity Beynon and her husband had composed, which enjoyably filled the evening before a longer chat with refreshments.

Gillian O’Flynn gave a report on the very popular Investigation and Discovery day held in Aylesbury on 7 March when 4 eminent people gave talks on varied subjects.

We wish our team of Jayne Faversham, Avril Sherratt and Anne Underwood good luck for the BFWI Quiz on 27 March.

Mary Collins will be our delegate at the BFWI Annual Council meeting on 18 April, accompanied by Ann Crook.

The Beechwood Group meeting at 7.45 for 8pm on 18 April is being hosted by Hyde Heath. Patricia Purcell who was with Sadler’s Wells will give a talk on “Tales of the Opera”. Volunteers were requested to help with refreshments.

As always, the Institute will provide tea and cake in the cricket pavilion at the Village Fete on 12 May. Di Coombes and Sylvia Childs volunteered to represent the WI at the Flower Festival held in St Andrew’s Church on the same day.

On 28 June, Joyce Guthrie has kindly offered her home and garden for a fund-raising afternoon tea. Family, friends and neighbours will be very welcome.

The Summer Evening Charity Ramble, with Supper in St Andrew’s Church afterwards, will be on 18 July and the Indoor Barbeque will be in the village hall on the evening of 9 August.

Next Month’s meeting will be at 8pm on 12 April when Ken Brazier will talk about “Cycling the Pilgrimage Routes to Santiago de Compostela. The competition will be Something Spanish.

Gillian O'Flynn
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April 2018

President, Elaine Barker, welcomed everyone on a rather dull and damp evening with the news that, thankfully, Irene had found a replacement speaker as the original one was unfortunately ill.


It was announced that very sadly former member and President, Sheila Compton had passed away on 22 March 2018. She and her husband had moved from Hyde Heath to Saltburn-on-Sea 15 years ago and was remembered with fondness.


Margaret Dunn had sent a reminder to everyone about WI Teas at the Village Fete on 12 May The support of as many members as possible was needed for donations of cakes and help on the day.


It was confirmed that the Afternoon Tea Party at Joyce Guthrie’s house will be from 2.30-4.30pm on 28 June. The Summer Evening Ramble & Supper will be on 18 July. Friends and relatives are welcome to both events, which will raise funds for Scannappeal, our charity for this year.


On the evening of 9 August, the Annual Indoor Barbeque will be held in the Village Hall.


Congratulations were given to our team of Avril Sherratt, Jayne Faversham and Anne Underwood who took part in the BFWI Quiz on 27 March and enjoyed a challenging evening finishing just over half-way down the list of 34 teams.

Our speaker, Jeff Rozelaar, then gave a fascinating and amusing talk, his third

one of the day, on Bagels and Bacon. He was born in the East End of London where Jack the Ripper preyed on his poor victims. Some of his neighbours past and present included Lionel Bart, the Kray brothers and Barbara Windsor!


The title of the talk emanates from the smells of the cafes and stalls serving this food. Even though he was Jewish, he couldn’t resist buying the bacon to go in the bagel.


Jeff described his life, living about 600 yards from the Tower of London in the 1940’s and 1950’s, illuminating it with snippets of songs from music halls and musicals. He had produced a book of his experiences, which was available to purchase.


The next meeting will be at 8pm on 10 May when the Resolution “Help us End Plastic Soup” will be discussed. There will also be a Bring & Buy table.

Gillian O'Flynn
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May 2018

Although there were quite a few absences for the Resolutions meeting, Elaine welcomed everyone and reported that she had received several very positive comments for the Beechwood Group Meeting last month and for the entertaining and amusing Opera Singer, Patricia Purcell.


Thanks were given to all the members who had provided food and helped set up the hall.


Di Coombes and Sylvia Childs had volunteered to provide an arrangement for the Flower Festival in St Andrew’s Church and Margaret Dunn was again organising the rota to provide tea and cakes in the cricket pavilion on the day of the village fete, which was very much appreciated.


The afternoon tea party being held at Joyce Guthrie’s home will be on 28 June from 2.30-4.30pm. There will be a raffle and Bring & Buy and the cost on entry will be £2.50.


The Summer Evening Ramble with Supper will be on 18th July at 6 for 6.15pm. Tickets cost £6. Supper will be at approximately 7.45pm when non-walkers should arrive.


WI members, friends and family will be most welcome to each event and the proceeds of both the Tea Party and Ramble will go towards our Charity, Scannappeal.


Also, the Annual Indoor Barbeque will be held in the village hall on the evening of 9 August.


Jayne Faversham then presented the Resolution “Mental Health Matters” which was discussed and voted for unanimously. Avril Sherratt will be the delegate representing Hyde Heath at the NFWI meeting in Cardiff on 6 June.


There was a request in the Newsletter for all BFWI’s to submit an entry to be included in a new Buckinghamshire Village Book in time for the Centenary in 2020. Pam Epps volunteered to help.


It was agreed by members to continue to give a subscription to Bucks Bounty (previously the Friends Club).


The next meeting will be on 14 June when Paul Rabbitt will talk about “A Life in Landscape: Park, People and Places”. The competition is “A Scenic Postcard”. Volunteers to organise a monthly walk were requested.

Gillian O'Flynn
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