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THE MAGAZINE FOR MEMBERS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT FELLOWSHIP SPRING 2014 www.csrf.org.uk

MAGAZINE

the vikings are

coming What the Norse did for us

Secret Gardens

We go behind the walls and peak inside

HELP US RECRUIT

Five reasons why we need your help

P L U S : B O O K C L U B • T H E AT R E

New families Foster carer stories

• GROUP NEWS • POSTBAG • FILMS


contents

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4 FRONT DESK

editor’s letter Hello, and let me introduce myself! David Tickner hasn’t disappeared from CSRF; far from it, he’s now firmly based in the Fellowship office. My name is Radhika Holmström, and I’m the new editor of avanti. I work with the avanti publishers Square7 Media as a journalist and I am really enjoying my new role, learning more about your fantastic charity and working with Jean, David and the team at Fellowship Office. In this first issue, with spring well on its way (even if it doesn’t always feel like it) we’ve gone outside to look at walled, ‘secret’ gardens around the UK and we’ve also asked the experts for helpful gardening tips as well. We’re also very proud to introduce our own resident cookery expert Sophia Hill, who will be running a regular page and kicks off here with her Easter lunch suggestions. Elsewhere, we go back a century to look at the Home Front during the First World War; and then much, much further back to the world of the Vikings (though I’ll confess to a secret disappointment to learn that they didn’t wear horned helmets after all).

News from the Fellowship Office and the Chief Executive’s report

14 THE VIKINGS ARE COMING

With a new exhibition coming to the British Museum, Mark Gould uncovers the little-known world of the Norse

15 ANTIBIOTIC ALERT What’s the fuss about antibiotics?

22 BEHIND THE WALL Secret, walled gardens around the UK

26 A PASSION FOR FOSTERING

The families who’ve taken other people’s children into their homes

30 TAKING THE TABLETS Sally Hall’s easy guide to the new technology

32 THE HOME FRONT

The First World War wasn’t only about the trenches. David Porteous tells the stories of many others who were also involved

26 LEISURE LIFE

From mammoths to superheroes, the culture that’s on offer this spring

41 SOPHIA’S COOK CORNER I’ve very much enjoyed working on this first issue and I’m looking forward to getting to know you all much better, so please do give me your feedback.

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Easter dining with Sophia Hill

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27 COFFEE TIME Jokes, puzzles and gardening tips

47 POSTBAG Your letters and views

50 GROUP FOCUS Group reports and news from around the country

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52 THE PLANNER Find out what your local group is up to

62 MY FAVOURITE THINGS

Writer Michael Rosen shares his

is published by Square7 Media Ltd, 3 More London Riverside, London SE1 2RE t: 020 3283 4055 e: enquiries@square7media.co.uk www.square7media.co.uk

The Civil Service Retirement Fellowship Suite 2, 80A Blackheath Road, London SE10 8DA t: 020 8691 7411 e: info@csrf.org.uk w: www.csrf.org.uk A charity registered in England and Wales No 255465 and in Scotland No SC039049 and a company limited by guarantee in England and Wales No 6297479

Publisher: Gaynor Garton e: gaynor@square7media.co.uk Advertising: t: 020 3283 4055 e: adsales@square7media.co.uk Editor: Radhika Holmström Contact the Editor: Use the CSRF address above e: avanti@square7media.co.uk t: 020 8691 7411 Contributors: Gareth Southwell, David Porteous, Sophia Hill, Sally Hall, Mark Gould Designer: Charlotte Morgan ©2014. avanti Magazine is published by Square7 Media Ltd on behalf of the Civil Service Retirement Fellowship (CSRF). All rights reserved. The CSRF and the publishers declare that any publication of any advertisement does not carry their endorsement or sponsorship of the advertiser or their products unless so indicated. Contributions are invited and, whether or not accepted, submissions will be returned only is accompanied by a stamped addressed envelope. No responsibility can be taken for drawings, photographs or literary contributions during transmission or while in the publisher’s hands. Proof of receipt is no guarantee of appearance. In the absence of an agreement, the copyright of all contributions, literary, photographic or artistic belongs to The CSRF. This publication (or any part thereof) may not be reproduced, transmitted or stored in print or electronic format (including, but not limited to, any online service, database or part of the internet), or in any other format in any media whatsoever, without the prior written permission of Square7 Media Ltd. The CSRF and Square7 Media accept no liability for the accuracy of the contents or any other opinions expressed herein. The views expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the official views of The CSRF.

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front desk

The latest news from Fellowship Office

from the chief executive Words by Jean Cooper

Dear Friends, The Fellowship is about the people it supports, as well as all the people who’re working tirelessly at local group level. We are very proud of what we do, but we also know that to continue as we are today, and to build on all the services we already provide, we do need more people to join us. That’s especially important now that our grant from the civil service has ceased. So the need to recruit new members is stronger than ever. Please do your very best and tell your civil service friends about the opportunity to join us. We’re also offering anyone who joins the Fellowship in 2014 a 50 per cent reduction on the first year of their annual membership which means they’ll only have to part with £13.50. It’s a really great offer and we hope that lots of people will see the advantages in taking it up. If you can’t recruit, do buy one (or better still lots) of our new buttercup badges for yourself, your friends and family. Every penny of the income from these is direct profit to us, and we are very grateful to Benenden Healthcare who sponsored them. In other news, I’m delighted to report that Baroness Liz Symons of Vernham Dean has kindly agreed to take on the role of Patron, and we will tell you more about her in the next issue. Sadly, our Civil Service Champion Sir Paul Jenkins, KCB, QC, is retiring but he will not be leaving us altogether; he was appointed a Vice-President last year so we look forward to working with him in his new capacity! There will certainly

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why you should help us to recruit Chief Executive Jean Cooper

be lots to do for all of us. Our team has a very busy year ahead with a huge amount of effort and energy focusing on fundraising and recruitment. In addition, we’re still pressing full steam ahead with our National Visitors Network, currently supported by the CSiS Charity Fund (and you’ll read more details of this on page 9). Finally, I’d like once again to say a very big thank you to all our supporters. At the Fellowship Office, we’re always overwhelmed by the amount of help and support that’s going on at local group level; about how much you’re doing, and the sheer range and variety of the activities, as well as the way that members have joined in our schemes like the Phone Buddies and the National Visitors Network. Your continued commitment and belief in the Fellowship inspires all who volunteer and work for this amazing organisation. Let’s make this a year in which we bring in even more people to share it. With kindest regards,

1.

New members can benefit from our vital buddying and visiting schemes

2.

We will be able to expand the range of local and national activities on offer

3.

More people means we can continue with the fantastic range of member services we provide

4.

 This year’s ‘special recruitment offer’ is incredible value for money!

5.

Many retirees still don’t know how much they’ll gain from membership. You are in pole position to tell them and help us bring them into the fold!

Let’s work together to grow the CSRF, secure our future and make YOUR charity bigger and better than ever!


Helping with our recruitment drive is simple. If you have a friend or group of friends who’d like to join, then fill out the coupon below and send directly to Fellowship Office and we’ll do the rest. New members can also join online at www.csrf.org.uk or either you or they can contact us directly via at Fellowship office on 020 8691 7411 or email us at info@csrf.org.uk. Thank you!

Your name:

Your membership number (if known):

Name of person you are recruiting:

2014 is our ‘Year of Recruitment’

Full address and postcode:

If each of you can recruit just one new member during the course of this year it will make a huge difference to our ability to grow and expand. 2014 marks the launch of a special Year of Recruitment for the Fellowship to promote the wonderful range of benefits on offer to everyone who subscribes, and to encourage us all to become recruiters for the year in the national push to sign up new members. The more new members, the greater opportunity for us to expand and support our existing services. What’s more, if new members are UK tax payers we can also benefit from an extra 25 per cent on the membership fee by claiming Gift Aid on their subscription fee. As an extra incentive to aid our recruitment plans we’re offering a special ‘golden’ introductory offer to all new members who register this year. If they sign up for our annual direct debit subscription it will only cost them £13.50

for the first year (a 50 per cent discount on our current annual subscription rate). That’s the equivalent of just 56p per week and with a membership package currently worth over £250 it’s extremely good value. We’re also actively looking at new services to add to our existing portfolio, and will keep you up to date with our plans in future issues. In the meantime, you can help spread the word by encouraging any friends who may have worked in the civil service (or are widows/ widowers of a civil servant) to sign up.

Whether people have been a civil servant for one day or 40 years, they are eligible to join.

Daytime telephone number:

Email address (if known):

Please return the form to: CSRF Recruit a Friend, FREEPOST SE4414, London SE10 8BP If you are joining multiple friends. please contact us for extra joining forms, or send this page back with a separate sheet with their details. The more the merrier! www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014 5


NEWS

Breaking News: the 2015 Fellowship Golden Jubilee Holiday

Golden Anniversary Badge We’re delighted to announce the launch of a special lapel badge to help raise funds for our Golden Appeal, celebrating 50 years of the Fellowship. This fundraising initiative has been made possible through a generous donation from Benenden Healthcare, which ensures that every single penny raised directly helps us reach our target. You can obtain a badge from your local group (we will be sending all groups a supply of badges to sell), direct from Fellowship Office or via the CSRF website. The badges have a suggested donation of £2.50 (to include p&p), or £2.00 if you buy from your local group at a meeting. But please do give as much as you feel able to. We hope you’ll wear your badge to show your support and sell some to (or buy for) your friends and family too. The buttercup design is bright, contemporary and full of hope and joy. Wear it with pride, as 50 years of The Fellowship is something worth celebrating and commemorating.

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13 - 17 April 2015 Back by popular demand and timed to coincide with our 50 years anniversary, details are now being finalised for the planned 2015 Fellowship holiday which will take place from 13 to 17 April 2015. The venue will be the Thoresby Hall Hotel, near Ollerton in Nottinghamshire, which

is a beautiful and historic Warner Leisure property. It is part of the Thoresby Estate and set in 30 acres of Grade I listed gardens. Local attractions include the historic cities of Lincoln and Nottingham as well as Sherwood Forest. This is a terrific opportunity to meet and make new Fellowship friends and there will be lots of things going on for you to enjoy. Friends and family are most welcome to come along as well. Our last Fellowship holiday in 2008 was attended by around 400 people, and we can’t wait to do it all again!

Prices and booking details will be announced in the next issue, but save the date for now!


Flower Cards

These lovely cards have proved very popular. We’ve sold nearly a thousand in the last six months! You can help us to hit our Golden Jubilee target by buying a few sets. They’re only £4 for a set of five (price includes p&p to any UK address). There are five different flower designs (painted by CSRF member Jenny Grundy), each card is left blank for any message and they come individually wrapped with an envelope. You can order your sets of flower cards (no minimum order) via the online payment form on the CSRF website or by sending a cheque made payable to ‘The CSRF’ for your order to Fellowship Office with your name, address and telephone number.

Orchid

Iris Germanica

Camellia

Blue Himalayan Poppy

Poinsettia

Donation Boxes Our popular piggy donation boxes put the ‘fun’ into fundraising and they’re free to order. They’re easy to put together and are perfect for all that loose change. If you don’t have one of our free boxes, why not request one today? All you do is pop your spare coins in it and once it’s full you can complete the donation form on the back of the box and send it in with a cheque or make the payment online at www.csrf.org.uk. Don’t forget the Fellowship can benefit from you gift aiding your donation. Call 020 8691 7411 or email fundraising@csrf.org.uk and we’ll send you one free of charge.

Help out near home We don’t just need money: we need time too! And we’re always on the lookout for people who can support their local groups, in all kinds of ways, helping with:

• ‘meeting and greeting’ at the door at meetings • collecting subscriptions • organising coaches, days out and theatre trips • keeping group finances ticking over (you don’t need to be a trained accountant – just good with money!) • hosting lunches, coffee mornings and teas (we always need help with these) • transporting other members • running groups. If you’re interested, do please contact your local group: and if there isn’t one, you might even want to step up and start one! The Fellowship Office is here to support you, but we need people to take the lead locally.

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VOLUNTEERING Contact: Gonul Irfan

E: volunteering@csrf.org.uk

T: 020 8469 9195

The National Visitors Network We’re approaching the end of the pilot year for this new befriending support network and we’ve made good progress in building a network that can serve people who would welcome a friendly home visit. It’s also been great to receive such positive feedback from the volunteers who have participated in the training seminars. As we look beyond the pilot year to developing the network in the year ahead one thing is very clear: tackling the issue of loneliness remains a national concern,

and the feedback from many of you shows how many people need and benefit from a befriending scheme. So whether you’d like to register to receive a visit or volunteer to become a Visitor then we’d like to hear from you. All you need to do is pick up the phone and give us a ring or send us an email and we’ll guide you through the process. All calls are treated in strictest confidence and all Visitors can claim out of pocket expenses.

Some of the things people have said about our National Visitors Network training courses... “The course presenter was excellent.” “The training was detailed and comprehensive, perfect for the role.” “The trainer was very good, he made sure that each element was fully understood by everyone whilst not making anyone feel inferior.”

To register If you’d like to sign up for the National Visitors Network, either as a Visitor or because you’d like to be visited, the first step is to contact us (in confidence). Call Gonul on 020 8469 9195, write to Fellowship Office or email: visiting@csrf.org.uk or use the registration form online at www.csrf.org.uk

Want a Buddy, Be a Buddy If you have some free time this year, why not consider becoming a Phone Buddy to make a regular friendship call to someone who would welcome a friendly voice? It’s up to you how often you call, or how long you call for, and you don’t even have to leave your home to do it! Or if you’d appreciate a call from a Buddy, we currently have a number of volunteer Buddies who are all ready and waiting to call you. So if you’d enjoy a regular friendly chat then please contact us and start enjoying the service.

How to register If you’d like to sign up for Phone Buddy scheme then contact Gonul (in confidence) by telephone on 020 8469 9195, write to Fellowship Office, email: phonebuddy@csrf.org.uk or use the registration form online at www.csrf.org.uk

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N WA

T A BU D D Y

B E A U D DY B

WHY NOT JOIN OUR TEAM? Help with the National Visitors Network Following the successful launch of our National Visitors Network we are seeking at least two volunteers to work with our Volunteer CoOrdinator to help her with a variety of interesting admin work. You do not need to be computer literate; we just need people who would like to work with our friendly team. If you are interested and would like to come along to our office we would love to see you and discuss further. If you live fairly local to the office we do pay out of pocket expenses and light refreshments or lunch.

Pop in to the office Are you computer literate and able to help us with some basic data inputting? Could you help with some general admin? Why not join our terrific volunteer Andrew who comes in on an ad hoc basis to help us out on all sorts of things? If you’re interested, get in touch with Sophia Hill on 020 8469 9192 to have a chat and arrange for you to call. We’ve a great team here. So why not join us and become a much valued and appreciated volunteer? Pick up that phone and give us a call or send an email to: sophia.hill@csrf.org.uk


EXPLORING THE The CSRF’s new befriending scheme was launched with the generous support of the Civil Service Insurance Society Charity Fund. As the end of the pilot year approaches we chat to Gill Noble, Chair of the CSIS Charity Fund, Kevin Holliday, Chief Executive of the Civil Service Insurance Society (CSIS) and CSRF Chief Executive Jean Cooper about the work of the fund and the impact of this support on the CSRF

CIRCLE

It’s like a virtuous circle,” says Kevin With so many deserving Holliday, Chief Executive of CSIS when causes, how do the trustees asked to describe the relationship decide where the money goes? between the insurance society, its “The bulk of our money goes to support policyholders, the CSIS Charity Fund the work of the main civil and public service and the organisations it supports. For charities and we adopt both a proactive the past eight years the CSRF has been and reactive approach to our grant giving,” one of the major beneficiaries of the explains Gill Noble. “We invite the main Charity Fund, and its donations have charities to submit proposals to us each helped support the publishing of avanti, year, especially for new initiatives that subsidised transport for volunteer drivers, we can help them to get off the ground, contributed to social room hire for groups but we also seek out other organisations and enabled the launch of the National where small amounts of money can often Visitors Network. In the last five years make a really big difference. We take alone the CSRF has received donations each proposal on merit, but we are always totalling £400,000. looking for activities that can make a clear Since its reconstitution in 2007, and direct improvement to the lives of the CSIS Charity Fund has awarded individuals in need.” a staggering £4.1 million in financial The Trustees can be very flexible in support to a wide range of charitable their grant giving and there’s a degree of organisations who provide ‘the relief of pragmatism in the decision making process. need, hardship and distress to former However, many of the projects selected for and retired civil and public servants and support are expected to demonstrate their their dependants’. This has been possible ability to become self-sustaining in because CSIS successfully markets good the future. quality, competitively priced insurance “The Charity Fund has pump-primed a products to civil and public servants; and number of new initiatives in the last few thanks to a deed of covenant years and we have been pleased that was established to see them develop into when the CSIS was something that has made founded, all the a positive difference to annual surplus the beneficiaries of that activity the organisations generates is we’ve supported,” given over adds Kevin to support Holliday. charitable The most causes. recent grant Customers awarded to The get a good CSRF was to launch (L-R) Gill Noble (Chair of Trustees, CSIS Charity service, and the the National Visitors Fund), Jean Cooper (Chief Executive, The CSRF) more satisfied Network, which and Kevin Holliday (Chief Executive, customers who take avanti readers will know The Civil Service Insurance Society) a policy, the greater the has been piloting in the surplus available to the south east/London and north trustees of the Charity Fund to west since March 2013. It featured support even more worthwhile causes: on the front cover of the Summer 2013 the epitome of the ‘virtuous circle’. issue and CSRF Chief Executive Jean Cooper

is in no doubt that the scheme has been well-received. “With the issue of loneliness and social isolation a national concern, we have been delighted to be able to launch something that has made such a positive difference to our beneficiaries. Reading the letters and hearing the feedback from those whose lives have been enhanced by the friendship visits reinforces our commitment to expand on our pilot year successes and see a fully integrated national network within the next two years,” she says.

But out of all these many causes that the CSIS Charity Fund supports, is there a particular one that has ‘tugged at the heart strings’? “It would have to be FAB (Families’ Activity Breaks – a charity that provides activity holidays around the UK for bereaved military families). Every time I read about the impact these breaks have on the kids it always reduces me to tears,” Gill Noble explains.

And for Kevin Holliday?

“I’m most proud of the work we’ve done with ‘Help for Hospices’, in particular the support we’ve been able to give to Claire House Hospice in the Wirral for their ‘Butterfly Suite’ which gives privacy to bereaved families. The CSIS Charity Fund has helped many organisations with grants over the past eight years and has made a positive contribution to the wellbeing and lives of many serving and retired civil and public sector workers in real hardship. And with the CSIS celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2015 that looks set to continue for many years to come. If you would like to find out more about who is supported by the CSIS Charity Fund visit www.csischarityfund.org

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FUNDRAISING E: fundraising@csrf.org.uk

T: 020 8691 7411

LIFE MEMBERSHIP

Since we reintroduced life membership, a number of our current annual subscribers have switched over to the new category. You don’t have to be an existing subscriber to benefit from life membership, though. We brought back life membership to help bring valuable funds into the organisation and any existing annual or deduction subscriber is eligible to switch to it. A single life membership is £250 and a joint one is £350. So whether you are an existing subscriber wishing to switch or you’re yet to sign up, the opportunity is always open to you. You can sign up by selecting the Life Member option on the ‘join us’ page of the CSRF website, www.csrf.org.uk. Alternatively, contact Fellowship Office on 020 8691 7411 to request a membership form

All members of the CSRF have access to a whole range of benefits and services. Have you made use of them all yet? • A free quarterly copy of avanti magazine. • Membership of our holiday club which offers great travel deals. Contact them by telephone: 0844 264 2422, email: csrftravelclub@ theukholidaygroup.com • Membership of our theatre clubs (offers are regularly updated and accessible via the members’ area of the CSRF website, www.csrf.org.uk).

HITTING Gold

Our progress so far

Thanks to your generosity last year we made a super start to our fundraising appeal. Now, in order to hit our target of £250,000 by the end of 2015, we still need to raise £145,880.75. If you’ve not made a donation yet your support would be very much appreciated, and there are many ways you can donate.

How to make a donation You can donate by cheque, direct debit or by making a credit or debit card payment online. Send your cheque (made payable to ‘The CSRF’) to Golden Appeal, The CSRF, FREEPOST SE4414, London SE10 8BP. Alternatively you can donate online at www.csrf.org.uk or by signing up to a direct debit or deduction from your civil service pension. If you wish to set up a regular donation you can download a direct debit form online at www.csrf.org.uk or call the Fellowship Office on 020 8691 7411 to request a copy. Don’t forget if you are a tax payer the Fellowship can benefit from an additional 25 per cent of your donation at no cost to you.

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• Our member Legal Advice Helpline. This offers advice on setting up a legacy, wills, lasting powers of attorney, care costs, probate costs and funeral plans. Contact the helpline by telephone on 08451 800 939 (between 9am and 5pm weekdays) or email: csrf@mcclure-solicitors.co.uk • Access to useful advice and information (you can ask us any question and we’ll research the answer for you and send you the requested details). • Membership of our book club, photography group and golf tour which we run in partnership with the NHS Retirement Fellowship. • Volunteer training opportunities (sign up as a visitor on our National Visitors Network and you’ll benefit from a training seminar run in partnership with the Samaritans). • Access to our two befriending services, the Phone Buddy Scheme and National Visitors Network.


What will your legacy be? Our future can be your legacy.

A new way to relieve fuel poverty

It’s not as morbid as it sounds, and leaving a legacy to the Fellowship is so important and vital for our future. Your kindness and thoughtfulness really will make a difference to the lives of others. A legacy is a very simple addition to your will, where you leave either a fixed sum or a percentage of the overall estate value. Quite simply, legacies are very important to us, as they allow us to continue to fund our work and build on the services available to our members. So whether you already have a will or you’re planning to make a new one, please consider leaving the Fellowship a legacy.

An estimated 300,000 older people are dependent on heating oil. The South West Forum on Ageing has negotiated an arrangement with the UK’s biggest supplier to community groups which will enable seniors to enjoy discounts of eight to 15 per cent. For more information call 01993 224 111 or visit www.seniorbuyingpower.co.uk

How do I make a legacy?

The most important starting point is to make sure you have a will in the first place! This is the only way to make sure that the people you wish to benefit from your estate will actually do so. If you do not have one then you will die ‘intestate’, which means your estate will be distributed according to the complex laws of intestacy. Intestacy rules can have surprising consequences, which

you really want to try to avoid! The actual process of including a legacy is very straightforward. Our legal partners McClures Solicitors are able to offer advice and guidance to any member wishing to find out more about how to do it. (See the contact details below.)

Frequently asked questions 1. Can I keep my legacy private?

Yes, of course. You don’t have to tell anyone what is in your will. However, if you do decide to make a legacy to us in your will we would love you to tell us, so that we can thank you personally.

2. What happens if I needed to change my will?

You can change the contents of your will at any time. You can either create a completely new will (which will state that it replaces any previous wills) or, if it is just a small change you can complete a simple amendment document (called a codicil) which is attached to your original will.

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3. Would my legacy be taxed?

The good news about leaving a legacy is that it is deducted from your estate before calculating any inheritance tax that may be due. In addition, as there is no upper limit you can be as generous as you like, safe in the knowledge that your legacy won’t be taxed.

To find out more about legacies or how to undertake a review of your will you can call the CSRF Legal Helpline on 0845 1800 939; or email: csrf@mcclure-solicitors.co.uk. Alternatively you can download the free information sheet on legacies from within the members’ area of the CSRF website, or call 020 8691 7411 to request your copy.

Wales comes together to reduce energy bills

The Cyd Cymru collective energy switching scheme is grouping individuals in Wales together to bulk buy energy for a better price. You can find out more about how to register by calling 0800 093 5902 or visit www.cydcymru-energy.com

Online resources at the library

Library members across the country can download e-books, e-audio books and e-magazines and use the free online reference resources. For example, visit www.northyorks.gov.uk/libraries to see how this might work for you.

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SPECIAL INTEREST Book Club: bookclub@csrf.org.uk Golf Tour: golftour@csrf.org.uk Photography: photography@csrf.org.uk The CSRF and NHSRF are grateful for the support received from the Civil Service Insurance Society (www.csis.co.uk) towards the book club, photography group and golf tour. If you’d like to find out more about any of these activities you can call Fellowship Office on 020 8691 7411 or email using the contacts shown below.

CSRF

NHSRF

WINNER

WINNER

Photography Group: Wildlife winners With a very high standard across the 250 entries received for the Wildlife and Pets competition at the end of last year the judges had a hard job to pick two winners. It was judged by Jean Cooper (CSRF Chief Executive), Vic Griffiths (NHSRF Vice President) and Adrian Best from the Civil Service Insurance Society who sponsored the prizes. David Armstrong was the CSRF winner for his picture, ‘Raindrops – Requiem for a fallen starling’ and Pam Melhuish was the NHSRF winner for her picture ‘Ballerina’. Members have until 31 May 2014 to send in their entries for the Seasonal Colours competition and once again there will be two winners (one from the CSRF and The NHSRF) who will each receive a prize of £200. The winners of this category will be judged alongside the winners of the Wildlife and

Pets competition for the title of overall Photography Group winner 2013 to 2014 which will be awarded this summer. Membership of the photography group is free for any CSRF member. To join, contact the co-ordinator, Anthea Graham on 01520 722951 or email: photography@nhsrf.org.uk

According to RSPB statistics (from the annual Big Garden Watch campaign) there are 83 per cent fewer starlings and 63 per cent fewer house sparrows in the UK than there were 35 years ago. For more information visit www.rspb.org.uk

This year’s book list is already underway with members reading our first selected book ‘The President’s Hat’ by Antoine Laurain. But if you’re interested in registering for the book club (it’s free to any national CSRF member) then please email: bookclub@csrf.org.uk

“Thank you for all the work that goes into the book club. It’s most appreciated.” Sandy, Book Club Member

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Seniors’ Golf Tour 2014 A joint initiative by the CSRF and the NHSRF, the tournament is specifically designed and developed as an important membership benefit with the aim of encouraging retired men and women from both organisations, along with their relatives and friends, to come together to share a game of golf, make new friends and renew old acquaintances.

“I thoroughly enjoyed last year’s event; it was excellent value for money. The course, refreshments and accommodation were first class and the class provided by the course pro was a great idea. I’m really looking forward to the 2014 tour.” John, Golf Tour member This year’s event will be taking place at the St Pierre, Hotel Golf and Country Club in Chepstow on Thursday 11 September 2014 – to find out more please email: golftour@csrf.org.uk


Feature

The Vikings

are coming What did the Vikings ever do for us? With a new exhibition opening at the British Museum this spring, Mark Gould uncovers the story of the Norsemen.

D

eliver us, God, from the savage race of Northmen which lays waste our realms.’ So ran a Latin chant written some time after the Vikings first raided England over 1,200 years ago. Today, many of us have half forgotten that ‘savage race’, but things are about to change. A major new exhibition at the British Museum opening on 6 March will offer new insights into Norse warriors, alongside their cultural, social and linguistic legacy. ‘Vikings: life and legends’ is the first major exhibition about the Vikings in the UK for over 30 years. It pulls together extraordinary evidence

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about this part of Britain’s past, including many new archaeological discoveries and objects never seen before in the UK (such as the surviving timbers of a Viking longship) which demonstrate extraordinary shipbuilding skills. The exhibition also features weapons, looted treasures and recently excavated skeletons from a mass grave of executed Vikings near Weymouth in Dorset, which provide a close up encounter with ‘real’ Vikings (as well as showing that things didn’t always go the way they would have wanted). “The reach and cultural connections of the Viking Age make it a remarkable story shared by many countries, not least here in the British Isles,” points out museum director Neil MacGregor. “New discoveries and research have led to a wealth of new information about the Vikings so it is a perfect moment Silver-inlaid to look again at axehead, AD 900s. © The this critical era.” National Museum of Denmark;

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Back in the old country

So who were they? Even though much of Britain was under Norse rule for centuries, many of us just don’t think much of this part of our heritage, relying on the stereotypical image of barbarians in horned helmets. But even that’s wrong; actually they didn’t favour horned helmets and while warfare was central to Viking identity they were also shrewd and pragmatic. The Viking Age dates from around AD 800 to 1050. They came, of course, from what are today’s Scandinavian countries, and shared common features such as jewellery, tools and other everyday equipment as well as the same religious beliefs. Communities had to be largely self sufficient, taking advantage of fertile soils, good pasture, well stocked fishing grounds or whatever else nature had provided. They also had to be experts in fashioning a range of raw materials into the tools and equipment they needed. Most of the year, Vikings were full time fishermen and farmers who spent their time at home producing food by fishing,


trapping or collecting. Only in the summer would they have rallied to the call of a local leader and ventured across the sea to raid or trade. Experts at the Jorvik Viking museum in York explain that local chieftains who felt themselves under threat by powerful neighbours, or by rulers who wanted to strengthen their grip by uniting their territory into one kingdom, opted to look for new lands across the sea.

Coming your way

The word ‘Viking’ itself is originally Anglo Saxon. Before the earliest Norse raids on the monasteries, the Anglo Saxons used an Old English word ‘wicing’ as a generic term for any invader. It meant ‘pirate’ or ‘piracy’. It was only in the late tenth or early eleventh century, in Anglo Saxon poems such as ‘The Battle of Maldon’ that wicing came to mean ‘a Scandinavian sea raider’. UK port settlements and ecclesiastical sites were the focus for the exchange of imported goods, from wine to high quality textiles. Agricultural produce and raw materials taken from the surrounding

lands, and used by the religious community living there, provided attractive pickings for the raiding Vikings. Secular magnates also used churches to store their own wealth so when a Viking sacked a monastery he hit the jackpot. The Vikings soon realised that they could increase their profits from raiding churches by stealing the lavishly decorated manuscripts and Bibles, and then selling them back to the monasteries. Warfare didn’t always go their way, though, explains Dr Pragya Vohra, lecturer in early medieval history at Aberystwyth University. “A lot of the battles with King Alfred ended in stalemate. That’s how the creation of the Danelaw came about, when the two sides drew a line on the map and in exchange for the land in the Danelaw the leader Guthram agreed to convert to Christianity.” However, she adds, pillage and warfare weren’t the only things on the Viking mind. “They were also traders and when they stayed and established settlements it was for practical reasons, again; it would have been dangerous to put to sea back to Scandinavia during

No horned helmets The most common image of a Viking, perpetuated by the Marvel comic’s superhero Thor, is one in full battle dress and a horned or winged helmet. A Viking warrior was well armed and formidable but according to experts at Jorvik they did not wear any particular uniform. Those who could have afforded it might have worn a leather body protector and a shirt of mail, sometimes called a brynie. Iron helmets, either hemispherical or conical in shape, and with some form of simple projecting bar to protect the nose, are very rarely found, and are more likely to have been worn by the rich and powerful than by an occasional fighter.

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Feature

The exhibition Sword, late 8th–early 9th century. Kalundborg or Holbæk, Zealand, Denmark. Photo: John Lee. © The National Museum of Denmark

the winter storms where they would have had to cope with sea ice.”

From Norse to English

The first Danelaw was established in 886 and by 1014 the King Cnut (the Canute of legend) who became the first Viking king of all England. Cnut, a second generation Christian, made great efforts to ingratiate himself with the people by donating funds to establish cathedrals. For a short period of time Christ was simply taken in as one of the pantheon of Norse gods; but over time and as a result of the Norse pragmatism the Norse gods were sidelined (except in times of peril, when people would still pray to Thor and the old gods). A die for minting pennies found in York shows a Christian inscription and Thor’s hammer, summing up the combination of two different seemingly contradictory beliefs. Other things worked in favour of integration too. Very importantly, the languages of Anglo Saxon and Old Norse were similar enough for speakers to understand each other. And in addition, it seems, that Viking personal grooming was also an advantage too. Early chroniclers reported that Anglo Saxon women found Vikings attractive because they bathed once a week, changed their clothes regularly and combed their hair and beards daily…a bit of a change from the usual Anglo Saxon man, it appears.

Fly agaric The Viking warrior prepared for battle with a little magic mushroom, the fly agaric, which may have been an early source of entheogens, hallucinogenic substances used for religious or shamanic purposes. It contains two toxins, ibotenic acid and muscimol, which are responsible for its psychoactive and hallucinogenic effects. To minimise its toxic side effects, the Vikings would drink it

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So today, what have the Vikings done for us? Norse words and references still pepper our language: Tuesday comes from Tiw, the Norse god known for his sense of justice; Wednesday from Woden; Thursday comes from Thor; and Friday from Frigg, a god equal in power to Odin. Words like ‘byelaw’, ‘freckle’ and ‘dirt’ all come originally from Scandinavia too. Farmers still refer to a castrated ram as a wether, while in Yorkshire alone 155 places end in ‘thorpe’, the Old Norse word for village or farmstead and 210 end in ‘by’. (Grimsby was originally ‘Grimr’s town.) Although not invented until hundreds of years later the word gun comes from the Old Norse Gunnhildr: a female name, in which both elements, gunn and hildr, mean ‘war’ and ‘battle’. Norse references may be less acknowledged than Latin ones, but they fill everything from Tolkien to films, TV and comic books. It’s their sense of adventure, says Vohra. “They capture the imagination. They spread themselves across most of Europe and the British Isles and while the communities they established contained certain similarities they were also all very different from place to place.” What did they do for us? A lot more than we usually acknowledge.

ready processed in the form of reindeer urine (yes, really!) dry it, smoke it or make it into ointments. Modern research has also shown that the two active ingredients’ effect on the brain can inhibit fear and the startle reflex, backing up the theory that it helped bring on the uncontrolled rage and fearlessness for which the ferocious Viking Berserkers were renowned. More info at www.treesforlife. org.uk/forest/mythfolk/flyagaric.html

The British Museum exhibition features many new discoveries and objects never seen in the UK alongside important Viking artefacts from its own collection and elsewhere. The centrepiece will be the surviving timbers of a 37m long Viking warship, the Roskilde 6: the longest ever found and never seen before in the UK. The construction of the ship has been dated to around AD 1025, the high point of the Viking Age when England, Denmark, Norway and possibly parts of Sweden were united under the rule of Cnut the Great. The size of the ship and the amount of resources required to build it suggest that it was almost certainly a royal warship, possibly connected with the wars fought by Cnut to assert his authority over this short lived North Sea Empire. For more on the exhibition, see page 39.

The Longship (Roskilde 6). The largest Viking ship ever discovered. The thirtyseven metre long warship was built in southern Norway around 1025, and was deliberately sunk in Denmark in the mid-11th century. © National Museum of Denmark.


Feature

antibiotic alert

Magic bullets or medical boomerangs? avanti investigates

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A

ntibiotics have been treated as wonder drugs ever since Alexander Fleming first identified penicillin in 1929, and with good reason. Penicillin alone is estimated to have added 10 years to the average human lifespan. The scourges of tuberculosis, syphilis and gonorrhoea, not to mention the Black Death bubonic plague (which destroyed around 40 per cent of the European population at one point in the Middle Ages) have all retreated from the Western world as a result of antibiotics’ ability to kill bacteria or to stop them multiplying. They’ve also made a huge difference to our ability to survive operations and cancer. In fact, although we usually think of antibiotics in terms of a prescription from the GP, they’re even more important behind the scenes in hospitals. “Ironically, all the major advances in medicine over the past 40 years leave us at a higher risk of developing infections for a while,” says Professor Alan Johnson, who is a consultant clinical scientist of Public Health England (which now incorporates the former Health Protection Agency). “The drugs used to treat cancer also attack the immune system. Postoperative infections can be devastating: which is why, for instance, the cement used during an operation for a knee joint is often impregnated with antibiotics.” To take just one example, the routine operation for cataracts involves inserting a small antibiotic capsule into the eye and as a result the complications have been reduced to almost zero. They’re also incredibly useful in tackling infections like pneumonia. Yet today, we’re living in a world where these drugs may stop working. Sally Davies, the government’s Chief Medical Officer for England, has announced that the danger

posed by growing resistance to antibiotics should be ranked along with terrorism on a list of threats to the nation. The World Health Organization is similarly concerned; Margaret Chan, Director General, has warned that resistance could signal the ‘end of modern medicine as we know it’. The Department of Health now has a five year strategy for tackling the growing threat…but we’re still queuing up in our thousands for the medication that is causing the problem. So what on earth has gone wrong?

The bacteria strike back

In fact, the professionals have been concerned about ‘antibiotic resistance’ ever since Fleming first found a promising mould growing in his dish. “Very soon after penicillin was introduced, bacteria that resisted it were reported,” Johnson explains.

The number of antibiotics in development is at an all time low

Pretty well every antibiotic in use has met with some resistance. Worldwide, there are now drug resistant forms of TB, typhoid, syphilis and other diseases. Some members of a bacterial strain can just be much tougher than others. They may also be capable of mutating. “Usually, the stronger ones do give in eventually, or very few of them are left. The problems have mainly come about because so many people haven’t taken the full course,” says Dr Ruth McNerney of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “The sensitive bacteria are killed off and the others survive. As a result, you get resistance in one gene to one drug, and then to another. And then there is movement between bacteria, carrying resistance to whole classes of drugs.” In the past, the response has been to develop another sort of antibiotic. “In the 1950’s and 1960’s lots of new ones were discovered,” says Johnson. “The bacteria responded, by developing resistance, so we needed new ones.” It’s partly the fact that this cycle has come to an end that is so alarming to all the health bodies. “At the moment the number of potential new ones in development is at an all time low, so our fallback position may not be an option for the future.” Davies was even blunter in her announcement last year, saying: “If we don’t take action, then we may all be back in an almost 19th century environment where infections kill us as a result of routine operations. We won’t be able to do a lot of our cancer treatments or organ transplants.”

Handle with care

Meticillin antibiotic drug (betalactam class), chemical structure

How does this relate to the prescription you take home from the GP surgery? In practice, antibiotic use can be problematic on three levels: your immediate condition, your longer term health, and the health of everyone else.

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Feature

If you are prescribed antibiotics…

The first mistake a lot of people make is by not realising that there’s a whole class of infections where these drugs don’t work at all. “What people don’t appreciate is that antibiotics only cure infections caused by bacteria. A lot of infections like colds and runny noses are often caused by viruses,” Johnson explains. Sometimes, of course, people get a bacterial infection on top of a virus. It is a delicate balancing act but, Johnson explains, doctors can test which it is; and in fact even when it does turn bacterial, antibiotics are only really a good idea if it’s serious. “It’s generally agreed that antibiotics aren’t needed for infections of the upper respiratory tract,” adds Dr Andrew Hayward, a senior lecturer in infectious disease epidemiology at University College London. “Sinusitis generally won’t respond well either. Middle ear infection is usually viral and even when it is bacterial antibiotics will probably only reduce the duration of the symptoms by about a day.” “For very mild infections, such as a runny nose or a mild cold, it’s better to treat the symptoms with fluids and rest as this will do just as much good and without the side effects,” Johnson advises firmly. It definitely is the case that too many of us are returning from the GP surgery with a prescription for these drugs. Recent research from Cardiff University has found that this is happening right across Europe. Often they’re doing this because patients themselves are demanding them or because they’re convinced that patients will ask at some point anyway. “We expect patients to be wanting antibiotics, which can become a self fulfilling prophecy,” agrees Dr Catti Moss, from the Royal College of General Practitioners’ patient partnership group. Sometimes it is just up to timing. Patients who come in on a Friday night are more likely to get a prescription for antibiotics just in case their infection does turn out over the weekend to be a serious bacterial one. On a Monday morning, with a week to come back if things take a downward turn, this is much

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• A  sk if you really need them and what will happen if you don’t take them • Check they won’t interfere with any other drugs you’re taking • If you know you are likely get a stomach upset, ask for medication in advance • Consider taking probiotics; the argument for these is that they import the kind of bacteria into your gut that you need

• T  ake the whole course (the evidence is that even if they know they shouldn’t, most people just stop when they’re feeling better) • Then dispose of any remaining medication. Please note: always make sure you to speak to your GP if you are worried about any health problems.

less likely to be the case. If you are prescribed them, though, the crucial thing is to finish the course. “At the end of the day, antibiotics are unlike other drugs, because they select out resistant strain bacteria,” Johnson points out. Essentially, antibiotics involve a balancing act. If they’re used for too short a time, there’s a danger that the toughest bacteria struggle through, and the infection reasserts itself (that’s a particular risk with TB, where treatment courses have to be very long). On the other hand, too long a course puts a huge amount of pressure on the bacteria all over the body (not just the ones that are causing the infection in the first place) especially the ones in the gut, which can result in a stomach upset.

Taking the medicine

If you are prescribed antibiotics, the key thing is to finish the course

Nobody’s saying that antibiotics ought to be refused entirely. “You’d expect people to get a prescription for lower respiratory tract infections like acute bronchitis which are largely viral but can lead to serious bacterial complications like pneumonia,” says Hayward. “Antibiotics are a seriously good idea if you’ve got bacterial pneumonia, or you’re chronically bronchitic and you’ve got an attack, or you have a soft tissue infection,” recommends Moss. The worry, say Davies and many others, is that if the researchers cannot come up with new options, eventually the ones that are still available won’t be much use at all. “I think the key thing is if you go to your GP, talk to them. Don’t feel embarrassed about raising the issue!” Johnson concludes. Take them, but take them carefully. They won’t be around for ever.


Feature

“These children are our future”

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a passion for

fostering What does fostering involve and who are the people taking other people’s children into their homes?

F

ostering is something that many people think about at some point: maybe if they’ve not had children, or alternatively if their own children are older and have left home. However, most people leave it at that, and don’t take the idea any further. Yet fostering agencies are crying out for new foster carers of all kinds and ages and many of the people who do it, especially later in life, find it incredibly rewarding. Foster carers look after children in their own homes when those children are unable to live with their birth families. That can be for a number of reasons, from mental health problems onwards. Some children need a foster home for just a few days, until they return to their birth family or move on elsewhere, while others will need a family to care for them for many years. Fostering is usually arranged through the local authority, but that is not

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the only route. There’s a growing number of independent fostering agencies too. Almost anyone can apply to foster: single or partnered, any religion or sexuality, and certainly people over retirement age as long as they are in reasonably good health. You do usually need a spare room, and anyone who applies has to go through preparation and assessment. Above all, you need to have the time and energy to look after and support children who have usually gone through some pretty difficult experiences before they came into care. “People who have led a full and active professional life are often still yearning for a new challenge in middle age and beyond, and may relish the opportunity to support children who desperately need a stable family life. Fostering can provide this and a lot more besides,” says Jackie Sanders of the Fostering Network. Three foster carers tell us their stories.

ohn Stanbridge, from east Sussex, is 52 and a retired retail manager and a magistrate. He and his wife Sally have been fostering for around seven years now. “We’d always wanted to foster, and had done a lot of voluntary work with young people, but we moved around a lot so we waited until we settled in a permanent home and our children had grown up and moved on. It does help, I think, that we’ve been there, done that and got the T-shirt in so many things because that’s given us the ability and confidence to deal with it all a lot better. When we started, we had no idea at all about what we needed to do, and we didn’t know anyone who fostered, so we looked around for organisations that provided fostering and came across an agency we really liked, because it was very focused on the children but also gave foster carers a lot of support. It took us about a year before we got signed off by the panel to foster children, and then our first young person arrived. Mind you, we had one vision of what we wanted to do, and the reality was quite different. We wanted to look after teenagers…but in fact our first child was nine, and he stayed with us for four and a half years. The interesting thing was that we realised how much more we could do for a child with a long term placement. There’s much more time to help, and to help them get back on track. Since

It helps that we’ve been there, done that and worn the T-shirt so many times


“When we’re out together, we look just like any other family.”

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then, we’ve had a number of other placements, and the two who are with us at the moment will also stay with us until they’re independent. It’s incredibly rewarding, and it can also be very tough. These are young people who have been quite traumatised by very sad lives. They’re anxious, they may be behind in their development, and they’re in choppy waters. That’s why we have to be the safe harbour, stabilising them and making it possible for them to go out into the world with much more than they had before. We’re not doing it alone. Our fostering agency has a whole network of people, from psychologists to educationalists, and we work with all the professionals at the local authority too. But we are the people who know these children best, and the people who will advocate for them. Day to day, we’re the people taking them to school and to after school clubs, and making sure that they have as normal a life as possible. It really is a massive, massive piece of work. You can’t go into it with rose-tinted glasses. But if you’re up for it, and you love the kids, it’s really worthwhile. These children are our future, and we owe it to them to help them to have a stable life of their own.”

obert Monteith, 58, is from Falkirk. He fosters full-time with his wife Christine. “Nine times out of 10 people tell me ‘I couldn’t do that’ but of course they can. We’re not special and we’re not superhuman; we’re just people who can give them love, attention and a stable home. Of course it can be incredibly difficult, and I do think that it helps to be older and to have more experience. I didn’t start until I’d finished a career that had covered a great deal, and that life experience has been really important. I started fostering pretty well by accident, 17 years ago. I’d left the army,

and I was looking for another vocation. I had all sorts of plans, but I ended up working with disabled adults. Around then, I spotted an advertisement for foster carers. We had no idea what it involved, but we went along to a meeting and the rest is history. Three months after our first child came to us, I took a sabbatical from my day job to get him through some difficult times, and I’ve never been back. Over the years, we’ve fostered nearly 80 kids, and it’s been a big mix: from a couple of weeks to 17 years, and across the whole age range from babies to teenagers. And it’s always different. The training and the preparation are essential, but until you’ve got that child physically in your house you don’t know how it’s going to go or if you’ve bonded or not. The flip side is that the satisfaction is unbelievable. It’s the best job I’ve ever had. Christine and I had always planned to take early retirement three years ago, but we kept fostering because the children we were looking after asked if they could stay with us until they become adults. They’re like our own now. When we’re out together, we look just like any other family. They’ve kept us young and kept us fostering.”

The types of foster care include: • E  mergency, where children need somewhere safe to stay for a few nights. • Short-term, where carers look after children for a few weeks or months, while plans are made for the child’s future. • Short breaks, where disabled children or children with special needs or behavioural difficulties enjoy a short stay on a pre-planned, regular basis with a new family, and their parents

or usual foster carers have a short break for themselves. • Long term and permanent: not all children who cannot return to their own families want to be adopted, especially older children or those who continue to have regular contact with relatives. These children live with long-term foster carers until they reach adulthood and are ready to live independently.

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Feature

The difference between adoption and fostering

“I’m not some sort of saint.”

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vril Head, 61, lives in Surrey and fosters with her husband Ron, 63. “I’ve always tried to explain to children that they are loved for who they are. The love isn’t conditional and it isn’t dependent on whether they behave well or badly. They are their own person and they have to be thought of as a separate individual in their own right’. At the same time, you do have to be on their side. You learn to be a backup and a bit of a punch bag sometimes but that’s parenting, learning about how your child reacts to different situations and getting there in the end. It can be a struggle, but coming through and seeing that your child is moving on to a better life is what it’s all about.

If one member of a family wants to foster, everyone needs to agree and be behind it

We’ve been foster carers for 30 years, along with bringing up our own three children. We started with offering respite care to children with disabilities, and since then we’ve adopted two and fostered around 140 children and young people, from a night or two to nine years. Today, along with our adopted disabled son we have two long-term placements, who are very profoundly disabled. My day is extremely full and busy, because on top of the usual meetings and appointments we see a lot of medical specialists for the children. At the same time, we’ve had lots of adventures with the children. We go camping regularly, and last winter we all went on holiday to New Zealand to see our daughter. It was a huge amount of work but it was absolutely worth it and there was no way that we’d have left any of the children behind. Long term fostering is much more settled and secure for everyone and I think that’s a big plus, especially for older people. Having said that, fostering’s not for everyone and if one person wants to do it the whole family has to agree and be committed to it, as a long-term responsibility. You have to be resilient and aware of some of the situations that may come up. It’s a huge responsibility. But I don’t foster because I’m some sort of saint: I just enjoy doing parent-type things! I am so glad we did it. There’s never a day when I’d say I was sorry we became foster carers. We’ve had a ball. I feel we’ve done something we’ve had all these children through our hands. And it has, I hope, affected their lives in a positive way for their futures.” For more information on how to get involved as a foster carer visit www.fostering.net or call 020 7620 6400.

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Fostering is different from adoption. In adoption, a child is legally moved from one family to another; they gain new parents, a new birth certificate and a permanent family unit even if their adoptive parents divorce, they are still the child’s parents. Fostered children are still part of their original family however long they live with their foster carers and they’re usually in contact with their birth parents too.

The foster carer shortage At the moment, there are over 52,000 foster families across the UK, looking after nearly 63,000 children. But that isn’t enough to cope with the number of children who are coming into foster care. During 2014, fostering services will be looking for at least 8,600 new foster families, particularly for teenagers, children with disabilities and sibling groups. It’s not just about finding a home: it’s about finding the right home, with carers who have the right skills and experience to support these children and young people.

talk to us We’d love to hear from any readers who have fostered, too. Do write to us at the Fellowship address on the front of the magazine, or email avanti@square7media.co.uk


Feature

behind

the wall Walled gardens hold an enduring fascination for us. We go inside, to investigate‌

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LEFT: The Rose Garden at Sissinghurst Castle Garden, © National Trust; RIGHT: Clumber walled garden, NTPL, David Noton; ABOVE: The Fruit and Vegetable Garden, Rosemoor; A view of the Rose Garden, Sissinghurst.

I

t’s an extra room. A garden within a garden. A private sheltered spot sealed off from wider open space. The walled gardens in country house estates continue to fascinate and delight us, with their combination of outside and inside, shelter and nature. Historically, walled off gardens date back to well before country estates, says Richard Wheeler, who’s a garden historian with the National Trust. “The medieval gardens were private by necessity. Any garden had to be enclosed to keep out predators and rabbits. Then later on, in the 17th century, big houses started constructing ‘private gardens’, which could only be approached by the house. Even in the next century, when the fashion was for landscaping right up to the front of the house, there were still the ‘ladies’ flower gardens’, often quite a way from the house and sometimes quite amazing. They’d be really private, secret places, walled or hedged around.” A real boom in walled off secret gardens came from the mid 19th century on, adds Dr Brent Elliott, historian at the Royal Horticultural Society. “The 1860’s and 1870’s started a revival in the ‘old fashioned garden’, enclosed by walls and

hedges. During the last quarter of the 19th century these were the ones that attracted the most interest in the gardening press, right up till the 1930’s: with gardens divided into a whole series of gardens by walls.” Most of these flower gardens also grew fruit; and of course the other form of walled garden was the purely productive ‘kitchen garden’, which fed a substantial part of the whole estate. In fact, Elliott explains these were the most important, heavily staffed and cultivated gardens right up until around the second world war. “Percy Thrower used to say that all the people of his generation were trained on country house gardens, and then after the war that whole area was lost. They were abandoned or used for other purposes right up to the 1980’s, and it’s only now that we’re restoring them.” So why the enduring attraction? “The idea of solitude in nature is immensely compelling,” Wheeler suggests. “It’s paradise in the wild but also it’s a safe place to retreat to, and in its way it’s very domestic too.” Outdoors, indoors, safe yet open to the elements: it’s no wonder that walled gardens continue to hold their particular spell over us.

The secret garden First published in 1910, Frances Hodgson Burnet’s children’s book has been dramatised, filmed and even turned into a musical. It is the story of Mary Lennox sent back from India to Yorkshire when her family dies, her sickly cousin Colin, and their friend Dickon, who plant and revive the ‘secret garden’, hidden behind a wall, which Colin’s dead mother loved and nurtured. By reviving the garden, both Mary and Colin are restored into full health and happiness themselves. The power of the garden itself runs through this novel and through other novels written at the same time. “The whole theme of the walled garden, something that was there already, was an important one in the 19th century,” Wheeler notes, pointing out that a German novel published 30 years earlier had very similar themes.

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Feature

Five walled gardens to get you started… RHS Rosemoor, Great Torrington

“The revival of the walled kitchen garden is a combination of education and nostalgia,” says Elliott and indeed, sometimes those kitchen gardens have been specially constructed. At Rosemoor in Devon, the garden is rather different from those of many country estates, because it all dates from the 1960’s, when Lady Anne Berry revamped the original site. Yet, explains curator Jonathan Webster, the fruit, vegetable and ornamental garden has firmly taken hold. “There’s a mix of fruit, vegetables and ornamental planting,” he says. “There’s a mix of peaches and nectarines as well as the more usual apples, pears, soft fruit and vegetables in raised beds. We want to inspire the gardeners who come here to grow their own wide range, too.” It may be relatively young but it’s definitely well established by now. “Vegetables don’t take time to establish, while the trained fruit growing up espaliers along the walls has reached a good age by now.” The result is a beautiful insight to one of the RHS’s flagship productions.

of planting. Each separate garden was a small scale enclosure of a different kind. Wheeler particularly highlights the White Garden, which was designed to be seen in moonlight, as “the most amazing concept”, full of grey, white and silver flowers and foliage. By contrast, the Cottage Garden is planted in warm reds, yellows and oranges, and the roses originally on the site of the White Garden now fill an enclosure of their own.

Address: RHS Garden Rosemoor, Great Torrington EX38 8PH Opening times: 10am-6pm (5pm OctoberMarch) Closed on Christmas Day Adult admission for non RHS members £8.50 (including Gift Aid) Groups of more than 10: £6.70 per person www.rhs.org/gardens/rosemoor

Address: Biddenden Road, near Cranbrook, TN17 2AB Telephone: 01580 710700 Open from 15 March, 11am-4pm: gardens close at 15.30 Adult admission £12.40 (including Gift Aid). Free to National Trust members. Groups of more than 15: £9.90 per person www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sissinghurst-castle

Sissinghurst

Clumber

Sissinghurst is one of the most famous walled gardens of all. Vita Sackville-West and her husband Harold Nicolson started work on the medieval moated site in the 1930s, in a collaboration that put him in charge of design and her in charge

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Set in the original country estate of the Dukes of Newcastle, the walled garden at Clumber Park is part of 3,800 acres of land most of it parkland, including heath, woods and a lake. This is a classic kitchen garden, and a fascinating glimpse into

the estate’s past. “It’s a real testament to the head gardeners’ arts,” explains head gardener Chris Margrave. “They produced a food superstore, with peaches, nectarines and asparagus. They even grew pineapples, and if you could do that it was a true feather in your cap.” Today, the walled garden is back in use: there are no pineapples, but instead rare breeds of fruit and vegetables. “We’ve got over 50 regional varieties of apple, including ones that are only grown by specialists. We’ve got ‘outlaw’ vegetables (which we can’t sell commercially) and my big passion is 130 varieties of rhubarb.” But that’s not all: there are walls within walls, including a soft fruit garden and rose gardens where the flowers bloom in the traditional red, white and blue of the dukes’ colours. Address: Worksop, S80 3AZ Telephone: 01909 544917 The walled garden is open from 31 March, 10am-4pm Monday to Friday and 9am-4pm Saturday and Sunday. Vehicle admission charge £6 per vehicle and £2.70 to access the Walled Garden. Free to National Trust members. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/clumber-park


LEFT: Cambo walled garden; The White Garden to House at Loseley.

Other gardens to whet your appetite The National Gardens Scheme is offering CSRF members discounted copies of the Yellow Book 2014. Published each year in February, this is a county by county guide to the thousands of welcoming gardens in England and Wales, many of which are not normally open to the public. To purchase your copy of the Yellow Book 2014 at the offer price of just £7 (rrp £9.99) including both post and packing to UK postal addresses please order via www.ngs.org.uk and use the following promotional code: CSYB14 Offer valid until end July 2014. Please allow 14 days for delivery.

Cambo

At Cambo in Fife, the two and a half acre walled garden is another relatively modern construction, dating back to the 1970s, within Georgian brick walls. It’s a ‘garden for all seasons’, with successive flowering from snowdrops in springtime through to late autumn grasses. A central rocky burn flows right down to the sea, while the garden blends traditional Victorian and modern features. “Most gardens are quite flat, whereas ours is sloping, with different views,” says head gardener Elliott Forsyth. “We’ve gone very much for a romantic, informal feel: it’s a Victorian garden, but with naturalistic plantings inspired by habitats around the world: the north American prairie, Japanese woodland, the Russian steppe, and the Mediterranean and select plants that are found there.” Address: Cambo House, Kingsbarns, St.Andrews, KY16 8QD, Scotland. Telephone: 01333 450 054 The gardens are open daily, 10am-5pm. Adult admission £5: free tours 1.30 pm on Tuesdays. www.camboestate.com/gardens

Loseley Park

Loseley, also home to the famous ice cream, dates back to the 17th century and the 2.5 acre walled garden is divided into different ‘rooms’, each with its own unique planting scheme and personality. There are three ornamental gardens: the rose garden with over one thousand old English varieties; the flower garden with traditional herbaceous plants and mixed shrubs; and the tranquil white garden with its borders of white, cream and silver around a central water feature. Then there’s the herb garden, which has played an important part in the house’s history, from the culinary to the medicinal; and finally a good old traditional organic vegetable garden. Address: Loseley Park Guildford Surrey GU3 1HS Telephone: 01483 405112 The gardens are open from May to September, Sunday to Thursdays, 11am-5pm Adult admission to garden and grounds £5. Groups (pre booked only): garden and grounds £4.25. www.loseleypark.co.uk

WORLD GARDEN We’ve also got a 2 for 1 offer on the World Garden at Lullingstone Castle in Kent. Just bring this copy of avanti. There are no restrictions on days, and the garden is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 12-5pm, from April to September.

CSRF group offer

During May 2014, Loseley Park is offering a special 10 per cent reduction on group entry to CSRF members, for groups of 15 or more and this includes a 10 minute introductory talk from a member of the gardening team too (subject to availability). To book this offer, please contact the groups coordinator on 01483 405112 or by email to groups@loseleypark.co.uk

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Feature

taking the Tablet sales are booming, and some experts say they’re replacing PCs. Sally Hall explains what tablets can do for you.

I

If you’ve been contemplating buying a desktop computer or a laptop but are having second thoughts (perhaps you feel you might not use all its functions, you’re worried about the cost or you just don’t know where to start) there is an alternative. Compact, lightweight and portable, tablets are a surprisingly powerful computer that comes in a neat little package that works in a similar way to a computer but with the accessibility of a smartphone. The first and perhaps best known is the Apple iPad, launched in 2010. Since then, Samsung, Google, Amazon and many more companies have also developed tablets, giving you lots of choice.

What they offer The reason tablets are a popular choice is that they offer so many functions. You can use programmes to write, just like a supplementary computer, and you can keep track of finances, shopping lists and bank balances. They are easy to carry around, fairly simple to use and give you instant access to the internet. They have touch screens (you don’t need to press buttons) and you can download lots of different programmes to help you manage and enjoy your life. You can use it in any part of your house, or when out and about. The only additional thing you need is a Wifi internet

Acer Iconia W510 from £319

Apple iPad Air 32GB from £450

Samsung Galaxy Note 2014 Edition from £449

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connection: a wireless internet modem or router. Like smartphones, what tablets use is ‘apps’. Most people use the Apple store or iTunes to download these. There are quite a lot of free ones but beware: if something is free it’s not necessarily good. There can also be a bewildering number that look similar, promise to do lots of amazing things and have different prices. So do a little homework before you buy, check reviews and read the description before making sure it’s right for you. You can choose from an enormous range of apps, meaning that you can personalise yours to be perfect just for you.


Tablets GETTING STARTED Most tablets are simple to use straight out of the box. They come with a charging cable although some may arrive fully charged (it’s usually best to let the battery run almost down before re-charging). Once it is charged up, simply turn on the button and the device will usually take you through the steps to set it up according to your personal preferences. To use, you ‘swipe’ your fingers on the screen to reach apps you need and then tap the icon to open the ‘app’. A couple of tries will make you proficient and if you need help, look at the manufacturer’s instruction video on their website. Some stores even offer free training sessions to get you started. Download the programmes you’d like to use, which can include the ones that’ll enable you to write and use spreadsheets. If there are other programmes you’ve used, from Google to Facebook and Skype, do add those as well. Next add some media ‘apps’:

the major newspapers all have them and so do news channels. A radio player enables you to listen to digital radio stations, while music players like Spotify and iTunes allow you to play your favourite tunes. Travel applications are really handy as you can check how long until your bus arrives, book a train, see if your plane is delayed or find your way on a map. If you love to read books, look for a book reader ‘app’ that gives you a good choice of screen lighting and font size. Those with poor eyesight will really appreciate the ability to be able to make the text nice and big. Remember that a basic Kindle or Nook is just for books and it doesn’t have all the extra functions of a tablet. Audio books and podcasts (recorded audio programmes and lectures) are great when you want to give your eyes a rest. Entertainment, books and newspapers are also excellent to use on tablets. There are artistic ‘apps’ that even David Hockney uses and many people play games from Scrabble to Candy Crush Saga. You can watch television programmes you have missed, send and receive emails, make Skype and video calls.

Apple iPad Mini 16GB from £313 Tesco Hudl from £119

Google Nexus 10 from £319

HOME AND AWAY The only thing to consider when choosing the size of a tablet is that the bigger the screen, the easier it is to use with small type and tricky ‘apps’ like Excel. The smaller and lighter it is, the easier to transport. So think about how you’re going to use it and make your choice based on that. A tablet might not be for you. But they’re lightweight, convenient and incredibly versatile; so if you’re thinking about expanding into the world of computing, remember that there’s a great alternative to a solid computer: and it could just change your life.

talk to us we’re particularly interested in finding out if you’re using social media sites, whether on a tablet, a smartphone or a ‘regular’ computer. Do let us know…. Contact us at the Fellowship Office address or email: avanti@square7media.co.uk

(Prices correct at time of going to press, but do shop around for best deals)

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Feature

the

home front The First World War changed the lives of millions of people in Britain who never went near the trenches. On the Home Front, writes David Porteous, men and women from different backgrounds had their own battles to fight: against prejudice and inequality, hardship and privation, and to uphold their convictions and beliefs.

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T

Truth is the first casualty of war, it is said. Within days of the outbreak of WW1, stories began to circulate in Britain of allegations of ‘atrocities’ committed by the German army during its invasion of neutral Belgium in August 1914.

Hatred for the ‘Huns’

Whether true or false, all tales of the invaders’ brutality were eagerly exploited by the Allies for propaganda purposes. Some have been documented since, such as the incidents at Dinant and elsewhere where men, women and children were executed as the Germans sought to crush civilian resistance. On the other hand accounts of soldiers bayoneting children and raping nuns, spread by rumour and the popular press, were baseless but nonetheless widely believed. Hostility towards all things German was fanned in the first weeks of the war by wholesale arrests of thousands of ‘aliens’ on espionage charges. In London the Metropolitan police rounded up 300 Germans and detained them at the Olympia exhibition halls in Kensington. Alexandra Palace became another holding camp. Residents of German origin, even those who had lived in Britain for many years, were guilty until proven innocent and interned for long periods on the Isle of Man until the authorities were satisfied they posed no threat. In October 1914 growing public disquiet forced the resignation of Prince Louis of Battenberg as First Lord of the Admiralty. He was German by birth and related to the Kaiser. Later in the war King George V ordered the Royal Family to drop their German titles and names: Saxe Coburg and Gotha became Windsor and Battenberg became Mountbatten. Even dogs were affected by Germanophobia as people threw stones at dachshunds in the street and the German Shepherd breed was renamed Alsatian. Anti German feeling fermented throughout the conflict, boiling over into hysteria at times of particularly high tension. After the Cunard liner Lusitania was sunk without warning off

the Irish coast by a U boat with the loss of 1,400 lives in May 1915, angry mobs smashed the windows of German shops. Shopkeepers with foreign sounding names were forced to display a notice which declared: ‘This is not a German shop. God Save the King.’ Draconian laws to imprison suspected spies and saboteurs without trial were brought in by the Defence of the Realm Act (DORA), an all embracing piece of emergency legislation approved by Parliament four days after the start of the war. This gave the government sweeping new powers to direct the economy and various aspects of public life. Among other measures, ministers swiftly took control of the mines and railways, doubled income tax to help pay for the war, requisitioned 165,000 horses for army service and introduced censorship.

Food and drink

Price controls on basic foodstuffs were also imposed. As more and more merchant ships were sunk by German submarines, seriously affecting supplies, controls on the distribution of food steadily tightened until general rationing for meat, butter, margarine, cheese, tea and sugar was introduced in 1918. Unlike the populations of German and Russian cities, households in Britain faced only privation and not starvation. In fact, rationing had one unexpected side effect for the middle and upper classes, according to a report in the Illustrated London News: ‘The health of the nation was never better, which leads much colour to the statement frequently made before the war that three fourths of the maladies of well to do people were caused by overeating.’ Of great concern to the government was the nation’s penchant for alcohol, which it feared was hampering vital war production. David Lloyd George described Britain’s three main enemies as ‘Germany, Austria and Drink’. Prohibition was contemplated but deemed impractical and bad for morale, though there was a law banning people from buying rounds in

ABOVE: Propaganda; LEFT: Cyclist despatch riders, Wandsworth Home Defence Battalion.

pubs. Instead campaigns were launched to cut excessive drinking and the King took a lead by giving up alcohol for the duration of the war.

Women to the fore

The millions of workers who joined the armed forces had to be replaced and urgent government appeals for women to sign up for war work were supported by leaders of the suffragette movement. Emmeline Pankhurst said: “Women are only too anxious to be recruited.” They were, not just for patriotic reasons but to bring in a wage to support their families. Some 1.6 million went to work in industry, though the trade unions only accepted them on the basis that it was for the duration. Women were employed in trades and professions up until then entirely male dominated, performing manual jobs such as gravediggers and road menders. Over 113,000 worked as farm labourers and thousands more joined the Women’s Land Army after it was formed in 1917. Women and girls (as young as 14) made up the bulk of the workforce in munitions factories, typically working 12 hour shifts for six days a week. Filling shells was a dirty, dangerous job and those who did it were nicknamed ‘canaries’ because the explosives turned their skin yellow. Around 100,000 women became nurses, as the flow of wounded soldiers from France and Flanders overwhelmed the nation’s medical facilities. Many civilian hospitals and large civic buildings

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Feature

FAR LEFT: Girls operating cranes in a shellfilling factory at Chilwell, Nottingham.; A female trolley driver signals a left turn on a platform at Liverpool Street Station, London.

were converted into military hospitals. Recently discovered photographs show Indian soldiers recuperating in the gardens of Brighton’s Royal Pavilion. The Red Cross also established 1,786 temporary auxiliary hospitals in buildings ranging from schools to stately homes. Besides military or civilian doctors and nurses, hospitals were staffed by local women from the Voluntary Aid Detachments, St John’s Ambulance, YMCA, the Friends Ambulance Unit, and hundreds of private and charitable ventures. These volunteers were given minimal training but through their war work acquired considerable nursing skill. Their experience of tending the sick and dying are vividly painted in a number of personal memoirs, the best known of which is Vera Brittain’s Testament of Youth. The contribution of women on the Home Front was crucial for the war effort. It also had far reaching social and political consequences. Most women had never gone out to work before and relished their new found freedom and sense of power. In 1918 women railway workers and tram and bus conductresses in London went on strike to demand the same pay as men (which the government had promised in 1915). Even though they had to give up their jobs when the men returned home, they had been given a taste of independence and now wanted to start careers. The part they played in securing final victory undoubtedly advanced female emancipation. In February 1918 the Representation of the People Act was passed, giving the vote to women over 30. In October of that year the House of

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Commons voted by 274 to 25 to allow women to become MPs. Kate Adie, in her new book Fighting on the Home Front: The Legacy of Women in World War One (published by Hodder & Stoughton) writes ‘…with fighting still raging on the front line, the Home Front could at least call one victory its own.’

The refusers

Those who opposed the war on moral, religious or political grounds suffered for their pacifism. Amid the unbridled patriotism that engulfed Britain, they were reviled for their supposed cowardice and the target of female vigilantes who handed out white feathers to men not in uniform. With mounting losses and an increasing shortage of volunteers, the government introduced conscription first for unmarried men, and then all men in 1916. The Conscription Acts recognised claims for exemption from conscientious objectors. Yet, ‘conchies’, as they became to be known, were often treated like criminals when they appeared before tribunals. Of the 16,500 men who refused to fight, most agreed to work as non combatants in hospitals and on farms. Others served as stretcher bearers at the front, and some inevitably became casualties themselves. Committed idealists who would not undertake any kind of service were imprisoned; around a thousand were given sentences with hard labour and sent to Dartmoor and other prisons. One of

these was the Quaker Stephen Hobhouse, who had renounced his inheritance to work with the poor in London’s East End. Another was Clifford Allen, president of the No Conscription Fellowship, who emerged a broken man and died prematurely. Their treatment sparked a public outcry. Pacifists who were not called up continued to face derision. Bertrand Russell, then a philosophy don at Trinity College, Cambridge, was attacked in the street and lost his job when he campaigned against conscription. He was subsequently imprisoned for six months, found guilty of sedition after calling on the Allied governments to open peace talks with the Germans, and was released just before the Armistice on 11 November 1918.

When the boys came home

In many ways, the years leading up to the outbreak of war were still part of the 19th century. By the end of 1918, the 20th century had firmly begun, and it was a new world for many. Lives of people on both sides of the conflict had changed forever. For the conscientious objectors, their punishment did not end with the war’s end. While many women could vote for the first time in the general election on 28 December 1918, ‘votes for everyone’ would take another 10 years. Yet there was, for better or worse, no going back. The home front, as much as the fighting in the trenches, had made sure of that.


entertainment

Our regular mix of books, culture and entertainment Counting Sheep The Pastoral Heritage of Britain

By Philip Walling (Profile) Published in April

The Cheesemaker’s House By Jane Cable (Jo Fletcher Books)

A secret history of the countryside and the animal that shaped it. From the beginning, the British landscape has been covered in sheep; from the words we speak to the roads and the waterways, sheep have helped define the idea of ‘Britain’. Our economy was once founded on the wool trade, and across the length and breadth of the country sheep farming is still a way of life for some. Philip Walling meets the modern sheep farmers still following in the steps of their forebears: the herdsmen, shepherds, merchants and yeomen of the past. Along the way, he encounters the eccentric characters who populate the British countryside: the mole catchers, the stick makers, the tobacco twisters and clog wrights. Exploring this great artisan heritage, he finds a lifestyle parallel to modern existence, struggling to remain unchanged; and at its heart, there are always sheep.

books

‘The Cheesemaker’s House’ is the story of a divorce, starting again, love and the supernatural. After her marriage breaks up, Alice Hart moves to a North Yorkshire village with her dog William to make a new life for herself. She even meets a couple of delightful men…but then starts to realise that things in her house and village aren’t quite what they seem, as the present and past seem to be mingling around her. What, or when, are the strange noises coming from? And is her new boyfriend literally a ‘charmer’? Jane Cable’s novel won the Suspense and Crime category of the Alan Titchmarsh Show’s People’s Novelist competition, reaching the last four out of over a thousand entries. In fact, Jane wrote the book originally for her mother Betty Simpson, who retired from the Welsh Office in 1984 as an antidote to the predictable ‘boy meets girl’ type stories.

member giveaway We have five copies of Jane Cable’s book to give away to readers. To enter send your details to: Book Giveaway, The CSRF, Suite 2, 80A Blackheath Road, London SE10 8DA. Closing date: 21 March 2014. The first five entries drawn will be the lucky winners. Judges’ decision is final.

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The Fateful Year

By Mark Bostridge (Penguin)

As we approach the anniversary of the first world war, this book tells the story of England in 1914; the suffragettes destroying works of art, schoolchildren going on strike in support of their teachers, and celebrity aviators thrilling spectators by looping the loop. A theatrical diva prepares to shock her audience, while an English poet in the making sets out on a midsummer railway journey that will result in a poem that remains loved and widely known to this day. At the same time, war is looming. England is beset by rumour and foreboding and in the book’s final pages, a bomb falls from the air onto British soil for the first time, and people live in expectation of air raids. As 1914 fades out, England is preparing itself for the prospect of a war that may be ‘all over by Christmas’ or may last rather longer than that.


The One Plus One

film

By Jojo Moyes (Michael Joseph) Published in February The latest from bestselling author Jojo Moyes: this time it’s the story of Jess, who does the wrong thing for what she believes to be the right reasons but then finds herself in torment. Moyes is one of those novelists who pulls off compelling, gripping fiction that’s also very well written and her latest is up to her usual high standard.

Lost and Found True tales of love and rescue from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home (Michael Joseph)

What happens to the animals adopted from the famous south London shelter? This book tells the story of some of them, including pets which have helped their new owners through cancer, couples brought together by their animals, and the former Battersea hound which became a search and rescue dog.

Under a Mackerel Sky

By Rick Stein (Ebury: out in paperback in March) Rick Stein is one of the UK’s most popular cookery writers, a champion of sustainable fishing and the recipient of an OBE for services to West Country tourism. Here, he charts his personal journey.

Thursday’s Children

By Nicci French (Michael Joseph: out in April) The latest from husband and wife team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French involving psychologist Freda Klein. In ‘Thursday’s Children’ we return to Klein’s world, where the suspense runs high and the characters (including the protagonist) are very complex indeed.

The invisible woman

Lionsgate (out now)

At the height of his career, Charles Dickens meets a younger woman who becomes his secret lover until his death. Directed by and starring Ralph Fiennes along with Kristin Scott Thomas and Tom Hollander.

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL

Fox (released 7 March) With a star-studded cast

including Ralph Fiennes, Tilda Swinton, Jude Law and Saoirse Ronan, this is the story of Gustave H, a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars, and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend.

Grace of Monaco

Warner Brothers (released 14 March) The story of former Hollywood star Grace Kelly’s crisis of marriage and identity, during a political dispute between Monaco’s Prince Rainier III and France’s Charles De Gaulle, and a looming French invasion of Monaco in the early 1960’s. With Nicole Kidman in the starring role.

Muppets most wanted

Disney (released 28 March) While on a grand world tour, the Muppets find themselves caught up in a European jewel heist caper headed by a Kermit lookalike and his dastardly sidekick. It’s meant for children, but judging from the previous movies there’ll be a fair number of adults packing the audiences too.

Captain America: the Winter Soldier

Disney (released 28 March) Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world and battles a new threat from old history: the Soviet agent known as the Winter Soldier. The Marvel comic superheroes just keep on giving. Many of the national cinema chains offer special discounts for afternoon screenings for older people. Check your local press for further information www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014

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culture theatre A TASTE OF HONEY

National Theatre

Written by Shelagh Delaney when she was 19, A Taste Of Honey is one of the great defining and taboo breaking plays of the 1950’s, offering an explosive celebration of the vulnerabilities and strengths of the female spirit in a deprived and restless world. The play opened at the Theatre Royal, Stratford East in 1958 before transferring to the West End, and was later made into a feature film with Rita Tushingham, Dora Bryan and Murray Melvin in 1961. Bursting with energy and daring, this exhilarating and angry depiction of harsh, working class life in post war Salford is shot through Until mid April.

The Threepenny Opera

On tour

The Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill classic: imagine a world where evil goes unpunished, money is corrupt, the law is fickle and lowly souls remain on the poverty line. London’s most notorious criminal, Macheath, has recently married Polly, the daughter of Jonathan Peachum, leader of the beggars. This new production is co directed by Jenny Sealey, who directed the opening ceremony of the 2012 Paralympics, and involves disabled actors from the Graeae Theatre Company. Nottingham Playhouse :21 February to 8 March New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich: 12 March to 22 March Birmingham Repertory Theatre: 27 March to 12 April West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds: 24 April to10 May

The Full Monty

Noël Coward Theatre, St Martin’s Lane, London They’re back…In 1997, a British film about six out of work Sheffield steelworkers with nothing to lose, took the world by storm. And now they’re back, live on stage! Oscar winning screenwriter Simon Beaufoy has gone back to Sheffield where it all started to rediscover the men, the women, the heartache and the hilarity of a city on the dole. Booking from 20 February to 14 June

Much Ado About Nothing

Royal Exchange, Manchester

Much Ado About Nothing is a play of parallel love stories. There’s the impetuous Claudio and Hero, who meet and fall desperately in love and plan to get married in seven days’ time and the vulnerability and awkwardness of the wiser and wittier Beatrice and Benedick. 27 March 14 to 3 May 14 For some great deals on theatre tickets, why not try the avanti theatre club. Call 020 7492 1566 or log into the members’ area of the CSRF website

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Henri Matisse: The Cut Outs

Tate Modern: 16 April to 7 September 2014 Henri Matisse (1869–1954) is one of the leading figures of modern art and one of the most significant colourists of all time. A draughtsman, printmaker, sculptor and painter, his cut outs are among the most significant of any artist’s late works. In a career spanning over half a century, Matisse made a large body of work of which the cut outs are a brilliant final chapter. Tate Modern’s major exhibition will be the most comprehensive exhibition ever devoted to the artist’s paper cut outs made between 1943 and 1954. It will bring together around 120 works, many seen together for the first time, in a groundbreaking reassessment of his colourful and innovative final pieces. Tickets priced £18 (£16 concs). For more information call 020 7887 8888 or visit www.tate.org.uk ABOVE: Blue Nude (I) 1952, Gouache painted paper cut-outs on paper on canvas, Foundation Beyeler, Riehen/Basel; BELOW: The Snail 1953, Gouache on paper, cut and pasted on paper mounted to canvas, Tate © Succession Henri Matisse/DACS 2013


The colourful world of Kaffe Fassett

American Museum in Britain, Bath: 22 March to 2 November 2014 World renowned knitwear and textile designer Kaffe Fassett returns to the American Museum in Britain in 2014 to celebrate his 50 years of working as an artist and colourist. This exhibition showcases Fassett’s maxim to ‘find colour in a grey world’. Over one hundred works of textile art a kaleidoscope of knitwear, needlepoint, beading, and quilts will be on show in this dramatic exhibition alongside vibrant mosaics and still life paintings by Fassett. Nearly all the objects on view are from his personal collection, and in fact, part of the exhibition will be a recreation of his studio space. Tickets priced £9 (£8 concs). For more information call 01225 460 503 or visit www.americanmuseum.org © 2009 The Field Museum

Mammoths of the Ice Age

National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh: Friday 24 January to Sunday 20 April 2014 Unlike dinosaurs and other prehistoric mammals, mastodons and mammoths lived side by side with humans for thousands of years. In Mammoths of the Ice Age visitors can again come nose to trunk with these intriguing animals. An extensive collection of significant objects from the Ice Age is brought together for the first time in the UK, from some of the oldest human art in existence to woolly mammoth hair, which could grow up to a metre long, preserved Columbian mammoth dung and giant tusks and teeth. Visitors can get hands on with skull casts, teeth, tusks and fossil jaws to learn about early evolutionary adaptations and manipulate a mechanical trunk to pick up objects and help a mammoth balance the weight of its tusks. Tickets priced £9 (concs £7.50). For more information call 0300 123 6789 or visit www.nms.ac.uk

ABOVE: Charleston Summer Needlepoint, 60 x 65 cm Courtesy of Hugh Ehrman RIGHT: Vegetable Rug Needlepoint, 177 x 133 cm Courtesy of Hugh Ehrman © Kaffe Fassett Studio

Vikings: life and legend

British Museum, London: 6 March to 22 June

As our feature which starts on page 14 shows, there was a lot more to the Vikings than grunting and pillaging. In this exhibition swords and axes, coins and jewellery, hoards, amulets and religious images show how Vikings created an international network connecting cultures over four continents. The exhibition will capitalise on new research and thousands of recent discoveries by both archaeologists and metal detectorists, to set the developments of the Viking Age in context. These new finds have changed our understanding of the nature of Viking identity, trade, magic and

belief and the role of the warrior in Viking society. And fittingly, given that the sea and ships were central to Viking society, at the centre of the exhibition will be the surviving timbers of a 37m Viking warship the longest ever found and never seen before in the UK. Tickets priced £16.50. For more information call 020 7323 8299 or visit www.britishmuseum.org

© http://www.paleoart.com

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Sophia’s Corner

Sophia Hill joined the team at Fellowship Office in October 2013 and currently works as PA to Chief Executive Jean Cooper. Before that, she a ran her own catering business cooking up a range of tasty treats for friends and clients. A past winner of Bristol Junior Masterchef (when only 16) it could be said that cooking is in her DNA. So she’s a perfect candidate to head up our brand new cooking section.

V If you or any of your guests are vegetarian, these individual Spinach, Feta and Butterbean Filo Tarts use similar spices and seasoning which means you can serve them with the same accompaniments.

Serves

4-6

Cooking a leg of lamb for Easter lunch is a popular choice but it can be expensive. Mutton leg or lamb shoulders are cheaper alternatives that are full of flavour, especially when slow cooked in this Moroccan Mechoui recipe. And though mutton can be tricky to find in supermarkets, a good butcher should be able to find it, or tell you where it’s available. Ingredients

Recipe

2kg Mutton leg or lamb shoulder 150g butter 1tbsp ground cumin 1tbsp ground coriander 3 large sprigs of rosemary 4 cloves of garlic 1 lemon Salt and pepper to taste

 Preheat your oven to 200°c/400°f/gas mark 6.  Finely chop the rosemary, zest the lemon and crush the garlic. Combine with spices, seasoning and butter to make a paste.  Make incisions (cuts) in the mutton. Rub the spiced butter over the joint and into the incisions to cover the whole joint.  Place the mutton in a deep roasting tray with a cup of water in the bottom and foil over the top. Immediately turn the oven down to 150°c/300°f/gas mark 2. Cook for six hours, basting occasionally.  Remove and allow the meat to rest for half an hour, still covered with foil. The mutton should be tender and come away from the bone easily.

Shred the leftover meat for shepherd’s pie… or try this way to make your mutton go further!

Preheat your oven to 180°c /350°f / gas mark 4 and gently melt the butter in a saucepan. From a packet filo pastry sheets, cut each in to 4 squares. Line a non-stick Yorkshire pudding tray with two squares of filo per tart. If your tray is non stick, melt a little extra butter and brush the tray with it. Brush the melted butter over all the filo cases but make sure you’re not overly generous or the pastry will not crisp up! Bake the cases in the oven for three minutes. Meanwhile, drain a can of butter beans and finely chop two garlic cloves, fry in a little oil on a medium heat along with 1tsp ground cumin and 1tsp ground coriander. Take the pan off the heat and add the 200g spinach to the pan, letting it cook in the residual heat. When the spinach has just wilted, spread the mixture out on to a plate. Zest 1 lemon over the plate and season, then leave to cool. Put a few slightly crushed butterbeans in the bottom of each pastry case. These will soak up some of the liquid from the spinach. Top the tarts with the spinach and crumble 150g feta over them. Bake for a further seven minutes and serve immediately.

Mutton and Pomegranate Salad

Thinly slice half a red onion and a quarter of a cucumber. Pan fry the red onion with bite size pieces of leftover mutton on a high heat for 30 seconds. Meanwhile, tear some mint leaves and bash the seeds out of half a pomegranate by hitting the back with a spoon. Mix all the ingredients with a generous handful of watercress and a balsamic vinegar and oil dressing then serve. Bon appetite!

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coffee break

Animals all around… What do you get if you cross…

Trivia and titbits to keep your mind in gear!

… a cow with a duck? Cream quackers.

have a CHUCKLE A mime in a zoo One day an out of work mime artist is visiting the zoo and attempts to earn some money as a street performer. As soon as he starts to draw a crowd, a zoo keeper grabs him and drags him into his office. The zoo keeper explains to him that the zoo’s most popular attraction, a gorilla, has died suddenly and the keeper’s worried that people will stop coming. He offers him a job to dress up as the gorilla until they can get another one. So the next morning the mime artist puts on the gorilla suit and enters the cage before the crowd comes. He discovers that it’s a great job. He can sleep all he wants, play and make fun of people and he draws bigger crowds than he ever did as a mime. However, eventually the crowds get bored with of him and he gets

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fed up with swinging on tyres. He begins to notice that the people are paying more attention to the lion in the cage next to his. So he climbs to the top of his cage, crawls across a partition, and dangles from the top to the lion’s cage. Of course, this makes the lion furious, but the crowd loves it. At the end of the day the zoo keeper comes and gives him a raise for being such a good attraction. And this goes on for some time: he keeps taunting the lion, the crowds keep on coming and his salary keeps going up. Then one terrible day when he is dangling over the furious lion he slips and falls. The mime artist is terrified. The lion gathers itself and prepares to pounce. He is so scared that he begins to run round and round the cage with the lion close behind. Finally, he starts screaming and yelling, “Help, Help me!”, but the lion is quick and pounces. The mime artist soon finds himself flat on his back looking up at the angry lion and the lion says, “Shut up, you idiot! Do you want to get us both fired?”

…an elephant with a kangaroo? Big holes all over Australia.

…an owl with a skunk? A bird that smells but doesn’t give a hoot.

ERRATUM We apologise for a couple of misplaced answers in the festive quiz last issue. The answers to questions 29 and 31 on page 47 were printed the wrong way round. Many thanks to Joachim Auerbach for writing in to point that out


Get out in the garden! If the gardens feature on page 26 has inspired you to turn your hand to your own plants, here are some tips for making spring gardening easier, from the advisory team at the Royal Horticultural Society. • If bending’s a problem, try bringing your plants higher. Large planters (60-70cm high, and 50-60cm wide) are relatively affordable and can be a good alternative to raised beds though they do take a fair amount of maintenance. • Both containers and raised beds do dry out quite easily, so think about an automatic watering system, rather than constantly lugging buckets and watering cans. This equipment consists of plastic pipes that either seep water themselves or bootlace type pipes that carry water to ‘emitters’ that deliver water exactly where it is needed. • Long handled tools save much bending and give good leverage to take the strain out of lifting. Some are well known and traditional such as long handled Cornish

spades and Dutch hoes, both of which are widely acknowledged as less tiring to use. Others such as the ‘Swoe’ are developments of traditional hoes and the Swoe is an especially easy to use hoe substitute for easier weeding. • Moving things round can get tricky, and there is a lot of moving ‘stuff ’ in gardening. Barrows with two wheels at the front are much more stable than the one wheeled variety. For heavy objects, like containers full of potting media, consider a sack barrow. They are sturdy but light, and often fold flat. • If you’re more of an indoor gardener, the houseplant of the day is the formerly humble Streptocarpus, with its striking flowers and sturdy plants. Leaf cuttings are reasonably easy so you can boost your stock at no cost. However, don’t over water them or expose them to too much sun, a north facing window is ideal!

…about chocolate? With Easter looming, here are 10 eggstra (sorry!) facts about our favourite confectionary Chocolate is actually made from a fruit the cocoa bean. There are about 40 beans in every cocoa pod. The first chocolate Easter eggs were made in Europe in the early 19th century. Three great Quakers of their time (George Cadbury, Joseph Rowntree and Joseph Storrs Fry) created an immensely wealthy industry producing cocoa and chocolate as an alternative to the demon alcohol. According to research published last year, drinking two cups of hot chocolate a day may help older people keep their brains healthy. The first chocolate factory in Britain opened in 1657. John Cadbury made his first ‘French eating Chocolate’ in 1842 but left it till 1875 to make the first Cadbury Easter eggs. Twelve per cent of the chocolate sold in the UK is Fairtrade. Research published last year at Columbia University showed a link between a nation’s chocolate intake and the number of Nobel Prizes it wins. On average, each person in the UK eats over 10 kilos of chocolate a year.

SUDOKU EASY

MEDIUM

HARD

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WORD SEARCH PUZZLE Find the titles of the following books hidden in the grid below

1984 Anna Karenina As You Like It Berenice Blubber Carrie Deenie Dune Emma Fear No Evil Hamlet Henry VI Howard’s End Infidel Ivanhoe Jane Eyre Jo’s Boys Macbeth Midwives Oliver Twist

CODED WORD PUZZLE

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abut admixture alert beanpole capillary Epicurean ethnic flux gazump hymeneal inadequate inexact kanji observer operate proverb quarrel quisling real-time rehearsal risked scramble sneaker spumes stipple strike back teapot tempo ultra walk-up

SPRING 2014 www.csrf.org.uk

Othello Pandora Robinson Crusoe Roots Shiver Tara Road The Aeneid The Chosen The Firm The Iliad The Prince The Raven Walden War and Peace

Clue: Letter 24 is S

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Prize Crossword

Congratulations to Mr B Bishop from Combe Down, Bath who was our lucky winner for the festive crossword. Try your hand at this issues prize puzzle and you too could win £100 worth of M&S vouchers. Good luck!

Across

6 Belief (5) 7 Like some knots (8) Another word for aluminium 10  oxide (7) 11 Placing an item upright (7) 12 Ursa minor (4,3) 13  A red condiment originating from pepper (7) 14 Woman in charge of a residence (11) Essential accessory for Women’s’ 19  Institute member? (7) 21 Far-out (7) 23 Guarantee a seat or ticket (7) 25 A crime against the state (7) Device for dispensing poison 26  darts (8) 27 Bring up the rear (5)

Down

1 Hand down (8) 2  Imaginary belt of the heavens with twelve constellations (6) To run one thought to the next line 3  without a syntactical break (10) 4 Burlap fiber (4) 5 Perfect excursion to see animals (6) 6 Bad-tempered (6) 8 To go into more detail (2,5) 9 To Examine or analyse (5) A person who owns many 13  houses (10) 15 Unfasten or open (7) 16 An adjustable electrical resistor (8) 17 Abundance (5) 18 Plant from the parsley family (6) 20 Boot part (6) Cardinal number, product of ten 22  and two (6) 24 Cut, maybe (4)

Solution to Winter Prize Crossword

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TO ENTER: Please send the completed crossword, along with your name, address and postcode to: PRIZE CROSSWORD, CSRF, Suite 2, 80A Blackheath Road, London SE10 8DA. The judges’ decision is final. Winners will be notified by post. Closing date: 28 March 2014 NAME: ADDRESS:

POSTCODE:

EMAIL:

TELEPHONE NUMBER: Please tick if you do not wish to receive our e-newsletter

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postbag

POSTbag CHRISTMAS MEMORIES Dear Postbag, After reading the article in the last issue about Christmas during the 1914 Great War I wanted to share my memories with other readers. In 1944, I was serving with 13 Platoon, C Company, 2nd Battalion, The Essex Regt (The Pompadours). We had just moved back into Nijmegen for a well-deserved rest prior to Christmas when we were returned to the line at the village of Valburg. Due to Rundstedt’s offensive, it was rumoured that a strong force of Germans were in Arnhem ready to push towards Nijmegen and beyond, and hence we were rushed into Valburg within 24 hours. We were going to have dinner and festivities in Nijmegen, but Rundstedt put paid to that. We dug in around Valburg in bombed and shelled houses and our platoon then thought about celebrating Christmas. We decorated one room of a shelled house where we had positions outside and inside. Decorations were found and put up, also tables and chairs. A chicken appeared from somewhere,

together with potatoes, green vegetables and Xmas pudding. The boys shared their cakes which they had received from home, together with cigars, compliments of the Wehrmacht. There were even napkins and the dinner, when laid out, was a joy to behold. We toasted with our rum ration which we had saved over a period of time. I will never forget that Christmas, the boys were terrific and it certainly was the spirit of Christmas and goodwill to all men. Len Oliver, Colchester, Essex Dear Postbag, As a conscript I served in the Royal Engineers Postal Section and in 1946 was posted to London to join

NEW KNEE, NEW LIFE Dear Postbag, Like many hundreds of patients expecting to have a knee replacement in the future, I was more than apprehensive from the consultations and x-ray stage to the expected date with the orthopaedic surgeon. For two years my health had been below par, to the say the least. By 1990 I was almost housebound, finding the pain too severe to venture far. Travelling, shopping and appointments were an ordeal. At last I could stand no

Your letters and STORIES

an Army Post Office Mail Distribution Centre which collected mailbags from the London railway stations for the boys to check before being sent out to Germany for the mail to be sorted and sent out to the various units. On arrival at the distribution centre I was issued with a sleeping out pass, ration book and payment of 6 shillings and 4 pence. I was employed on the night shift and given a room to sleep in a requisitioned house in Mayfair. We had to buy our own food and as my allowance was tight I used to go and eat at the Church Army canteen at Euston station (they served a staple diet of pie and beans)! We were working on Christmas Eve and hoped the canteen would be open as we were on the night shift. At 1am on Christmas morning we finally got to the canteen expecting our usual pie and beans but were surprised and delighted to find a wonderful Christmas dinner of turkey with all the trimmings and Christmas pudding. It was very welcome and I’ve never forgotten the experience. George Stredwick, Whyteleafe, Surrey

more pain, although I tried many remedies (mostly herbal). My operation was carried out in Surrey and after convalescence I returned home in good health to a better future. Paula May, London

Ed’s Note – It’s wonderful that your operation was successful and that as a result your life has changed for the better. Your letter will no doubt be inspirational for any members about to embark on their own surgery or procedures.

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Audio avanti is

FLORAL PRAISE Dear Postbag, I ordered some of the flower cards after seeing them in the last issue. They are lovely and I endorse everything that Mary (Collins) said in her postbag letter. Thanks very much. Miss A Taylor, Leeds

Ed’s Note – We are delighted to hear such positive feedback about our flower cards from many of our members. You can still order sets and help with our fundraising on page 7

CIVIL SERVICE STORIES Dear Postbag, After completing my war service in 1945, I was referred to an advertisement in a newspaper for applicants for posts in HM Customs and Excise. The process required I sit a written exam followed by an interview in London. After completing this I received instructions to report to the Waterguard Superintendent H.M. Customs at Manchester docks following which I was installed in the Waterguard office as an ‘Assistant Prevention Officer’. I then began a new life which I had never envisaged, having originally held the belief that Civil Servants just sat in offices processing paperwork of one kind or another. I discovered that the Waterguard was completely different. To begin with I was measured for a uniform similar to a Royal Naval uniform sporting a ‘2nd Lieutenant stripe’. I was then informed I would be a member of the ‘rummage crew’. The job of the ‘rummage crew’ was to search ships arriving from abroad looking for possible hidden contraband. If any was found it was necessary to try and find the owner, who would either have to pay the

import duty or in some cases be taken to court. Searching a ship could be quite demanding and also very dirty particularly in the old ships where you could be searching coal bunkers and under engine room plates. To do this it was necessary to wear overalls. It was a fascinating job, and at my age now (89 years) I have many memories. Sadly now the Waterguard is no longer in existence despite its very ancient history. But I think I may be right in saying it is the oldest civil service department. N. C. Henshaw, Newry, Co.Down

Ed’s Note – Dating back as far as 1671, you can find out more about the history of The Waterguard at www.hm-waterguard.org.uk Dear Postbag, Sitting in the comfort of my armchair listening to the cricket commentary from the Oval last year, I was pleasantly reminded of the momentous event of 75 years ago; I had left school just one month previously and was scheduled to start my Civil Service career in just two weeks’ time. My friend and I travelled by train to Vauxhall, then proceeded to Harleyford Road to the cricket ground and took our places in the terrace of concrete seating overlooked by the still familiar gas holder.

free

If you are finding it difficult to read the magazine, then sign up to receive our FREE audio version which includes all the main features, news and information that are contained in the printed version. It comes on a CD (kindly produced by Kent Association for the Blind) and is posted out to you just after publication of the print version.

The match against the Aussies was an enjoyable event and more so as we were able to experience the excitement of the spectators when Len Hutton reached the mammoth score of 364 before losing his wicket. At close of play I managed to get the great player to autograph my score card but sadly, with the passing of the years, including several changes of residence, I no longer have it. Two weeks later, I was working at the Ministry of Labour Claims and Record Office at Kew Gardens. After serving for four years in the ATS as an Intercept Wireless Operator, I accepted a voluntary transfer to the Public Trustee Office, working in various accounts departments dealing with executorships, intestacies, trusts and family settlements. The work was challenging, very interesting and I remained there until I retired. Throughout my adult life, I have been interested in sport of all kinds, I played club hockey for many years and lunchtime netball in Lincolns Inn Fields for the Office. I had the occasional invite to play cricket but neither my bowling nor batting skills were of any consequence. Although mobility problems now limit my sporting interest, I still enjoying watching and listening to sport on the radio and television. Trixie Davison, Bognor Regis, West Sussex

talk to us If you have a story or picture to share, write or send it to the Editor using the contact information at the front of the magazine. The Editor regrets it is not possible to enter into correspondence

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SPRING 2014 www.csrf.org.uk

with individual readers. All submissions unless otherwise indicated will be considered for publication. It’s lovely to hear from you and read all of the letters you take the time to write. But

unfortunately due to space constraints we are often unable to print the full version of some of them. In these cases, letters will be edited to fit within the allotted space we give to Postbag.


group news

GROUPFOCUS The latest news from around the branch and group network

Dorchester

Report by Mike Rogers

Our group recently laid on a recruitment event to raise awareness and interest about our activities to all beneficiaries within the area. Fellowship Office kindly advised and supported the initiative and provided valuable administrative support (sending out and collating all invitation responses). The result was very positive with a 70 per cent response to our letter. On the day our visiting speaker Bob Ayers gave a splendid talk on Dickens’ London and we followed the talk with some refreshments. Judging by the decibel levels during the meeting it was clear that everyone thoroughly enjoyed the occasion, and as a result we’ve attracted a number of new recruits.

Members waiting for the speaker

Sutton

Report by Peter Hodson

The group has enjoyed a number of ‘culinary related’ social activities in the past few months with an American supper in November, Christmas lunch and afternoon tea at the Waldorf Hotel in central London just before the

end of the year. Sutton has an active programme planned for this year with speaker highlights including a talk in March about moving house and one in April on Quakers and chocolate makers.

ABOVE: Group members enjoying afternoon tea at the Aldwych and the Christmas lunch

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Roll Call! Group Chair Mike Rogers checks how many members are in attendance


Liskeard and Pensilva

Report by Sylvia Allkins

It’s been a busy time for the group in the past few months. At the end of November 2013, 35 members and friends went to the Royal York and Faulkner Hotel in Sidmouth for the group’s annual

‘Turkey and Tinsel’ break including several local day trips to attractions in the area. Members enjoyed visits to Tuckers Maltings at Newton Abbot, Britain’s only working malthouse, and to the Bygones Museum in Torquay which houses memorabilia from Queen Victoria’s days through to the 1940’s and 50’s. The museum also has a huge working model railway display; the trains run through a ‘Fantasyland’ with tunnels, mountains and towns. At the end of the week we enjoyed our annual drinks party and seasonal corsage competition. This year’s winner was Mrs Marion Baughan and the runnerup was Mrs Olga Williams. A big thank you to Miss J Slade and Mrs M Ball for organising such a wonderful trip. Group members who entered the annual seasonal corsage competition

The Greywell Ringers performing for the group

Basingstoke

Report by David Cowling

Our chairman, Janette Davies welcomed 64 members and two visitors to our December group meeting, where everyone enjoyed a very tasty Christmas buffet. There was a festive feel throughout as lunch was followed by a performance by the Greywell Ringers,

led by Barbara Kimber, of a number of Christmas carols and tunes. These included some foreign carols, traditional English ones and a modern arrangement of ‘See Amid the Winter’s Snow’ by Sandra Winter, an internationally acclaimed hand bell tune composer.

GOLDEN GROUPS A huge thank you to the following groups for their wonderful contributions to our Golden Appeal: Bexhill who raised £80 during 2013; members collected money in their Piggy Donation boxes.

Dumfries and Kirkcudbright who raised £50 from the sale of raffle tickets at their Christmas lunch.

Norwich who sent in a £20 donation. Is your group planning a fundraising event to help raise money for our Golden Appeal? If you’d like any support or advice you can request a copy of the Community Fundraising guide from Fellowship Office or download direct from the Members’ area of the CSRF website.

Certificates of

Merit/Ap preciation If you’d like to nominate someone you feel deserves recognition within your group then you can recommend them for either a Certificate of Merit or Appreciation. Requests should normally come from either a branch or group committee member. They are free and there are no forms to fill out either but please allow plenty of time for the certificate request to be processed, signed and sent out. For any requests, please contact Sophia Hill on 020 8469 9192 or email: sophia.hill@csrf.org.uk

To help with your group fundraising you can request a supply of free individual donation boxes or a general donation box (ideal to display on the registration desk at group meetings) to collect funds. Call 020 8691 7411 or email: fundraising@csrf.org.uk to request your donation boxes

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1

in pictures 2

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1. Salisbury Plain chairman Jeffrey Vincent (centre) presented Certificates of Appreciation to Outings Organiser Ruth Steward (left) and Treasurer Richard Dunscombe (right) in recognition of their service to the group. 2 & 3. Scarborough branch held its final Christmas lunch in December and made two presentations of Certificates of Merit to Mrs Jean Courtney and Mr Ray Pollin for their work on behalf of the branch. 4. Banbury group enjoyed a talk on the lives and traditions of Sulgrave Manor. Speaker Martin Sirot-Smith came to the meeting dressed in the style of a Lord of the Manor in Tudor times.

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5. Lisburn Group members on a visit to Crumlin Road Gaol, Belfast. 6. Some members and friends of Liskeard and Pensilva enjoying their Christmas lunch at the Trethorne Leisure Centre in Launceston, Cornwall. 7. Princetown Group members enjoying their Christmas Party.

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8. (from l to r) Neath Port Talbot chairman Eira Northcott and group members Daphne Winter and Mavis Evans ran a ‘Buttons and Things’ stall at a local craft fair to help raise funds for their group.

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8 All these images have been sent in by local groups – thank you very much and do keep them coming! But if you can send us digital photos, these are always of a much higher quality and can be printed much better. What’s more, you can email them directly to us at groupsupport@csrf.org.uk and save on the postage!

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group info SCOTLAND Dumfries & Kirkcudbright John Walker CHAIRMAN 01387 261889 j.walker215@btinternet.com We do not hold regular meetings but if you would like further details about coach outings and to book, please contact Doreen Beck on 01387 268824. 12/03/14 AGM/Lunch: 11.30am Moreig Hotel, Annan Road, Dumfries

Edinburgh (Central)

SPRING PLANNER

Our group network operates across the country and provides a mix of leisure, social and welfare activities for your benefit and enjoyment. So why not show your support by popping along and making some new friends? Bangor

Isabel McKnight SECRETARY 028 9186 3410 IR3410@yahoo.co.uk Hamilton House, Hamilton Road, Bangor Second Wednesday of the month at 2.30pm

Liz Beedie SECRETARY 0131 229 7422 Edinburgh Quaker Meeting House, First Floor, 7 Victoria Terrace, Edinburgh. Buses to George IV Bridge (there is a lift). Third Tuesday of the month (October to April) at 2pm for speakers etc. We run walks (jointly with Corstorphine Group) throughout the year, meeting at Lakeland on the corner of George Street/Hanover Street at 1.30pm on the first Friday of each month. Organiser: Trudy Thomas Summer coffee/tea meetings start again on the last Tuesday of May at St. Johns Café at 2.30pm.

Cynthia Morgan SECRETARY 0151 678 6266 Victory Hall, 61 Salacre Lane, Upton, Wirral First Tuesday of the month at 2pm

Edinburgh (Corstorphine)

Bury

Belfast George Glenholmes SECRETARY 028 9048 0339 McElhinney Room, The Pavillion, Stormont Estate, Upper Newtownards Road First Monday of each month at 2.30pm

Birkenhead/Wirral

Liz Beedie SECRETARY 0131 229 7422 Martin Shields Hall, St. Ninian’s Church, Corstorphine, Edinburgh for coffee mornings. Third Thursday of each month October-April at 10.30-11.45am. We run walks (jointly with Central Group) throughout the year, meeting at Lakeland on the corner of George Street/ Hanover Street at 1.30pm on the first Friday of each month. Organiser: Trudy Thomas. Summer coffee/tea meetings start again on the last Tuesday of May at St. Johns Café at 2.30pm.

Gerald Beadling CHAIRMAN 01706 633674 The Mosses Community Centre, Cecil Street Each Wednesday at 2.15pm

Highland (Scotland)

Miss Grace Harding CHAIRMAN 01270 250677 Wells Green Methodist Church Hall, Brooklands Avenue, Wistaston, Crewe First Tuesday of each month at 2pm (unless otherwise stated) 04/03/14 Dialects: talk by Derek Poulson, Head of Theatre, 6th Form College 01/04/14 Jonathan and Pam Baddeley: 1950s and 1960s revisited. Jonathan plays clarinet and ukulele and Pam sings 06/05/14 Confessions of a Landscape Gardener, from 1981 to 1986: talk by Derek Jones

Mrs Pam Barnet LOCAL CONTACT 01463 790265 MacDougall Clansman Hotel, 103 Church Street, Inverness First Wednesday of each month at 2pm and coffee morning on third Wednesday of each month at 11am. Lunch club on selected Fridays throughout the summer.

Rosneath William Lauchlan SECRETARY 01436 842723 The Howie Pavillion, Rosneath First Monday of the month at 1.30pm

NORTHERN IRELAND AND NORTH WEST ENGLAND Antrim Brian Shields CHAIRPERSON 028 9443 2615 Crown Buildings, 20 Castle Street, Antrim Second Wednesday of each month at 2.30pm

Banbridge Adrian Howlett SECRETARY 028 4062 7979 3rd Floor, Old Tech Building, Downshire Road First Wednesday of each month at 2pm 05/03/14 Speaker from Tesco on St. Patrick’s Day tips 02/04/14 David Elliott with his nonsense verses 07/05/14 AGM

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Craigavon George McConnell SECRETARY 028 8676 4395 joannearcher1@hotmail.co.uk Portadown Library, 24-26 Church Street, Portadown, Craigavon First Tuesday of the month at 2.30pm

Crewe

Lisburn Ann Allen SECRETARY 028 9266 1943 Bridge Community Centre, 50 Railway Street, Lisburn Second Monday of each month at 2.30pm 10/03/14 Visit to Tayto Factory, Tandragee 14/04/14 Visit to the White House Heritage Centre, Newtownabbey 12/05/14 Visit to Annetts ‘Outside Living’ and Garden Centre

Penrith Richard Roscoe CHAIRMAN 01697 472383 A local hostelry each quarter First Tuesday of the quarter (March, June and September) at 12.30pm for lunch and in December for a Christmas lunch

Southport Mrs E Milne CHAIRPERSON 01704 560850 Conservative Club, Bath Street, Southport Third Thursday of each month at 2pm onwards 20/03/14 Monthly get together 17/04/14 Monthly get together 15/05/14 Monthly get together

Stockport/Grove Park Joan Broadbent SOCIAL SECRETARY 01625 873740 Brookdale Club, Bridge Lane, Bramhall First Thursday of each month at 2.15pm 06/03/14 James Watt and Abney Hall: talk by Howard Green 03/04/14 New England in the Fall: talk by Rodger Burgess 01/05/14 The Third Planet from the Sun: talk by Brian Hallworth

Waterloo (Merseyside) Mrs Joyce Nicholls SECRETARY 0151 931 5265 nichollsjoyce@yahoo.com Mersey Road Methodist Church, Mersey Road, Crosby, Liverpool Second Tuesday of each month at 10.30am

NORTH EAST ENGLAND Blaydon Elizabeth Pearson SECRETARY 0191 488 0840 Ridley Room, Blaydon Library, Wesley District Precinct, Blaydon Second Tuesday of each month at 10.30am

Boston Spa/Wetherby Mrs Janet Walker RECORDS SECRETARY 01937 842216 Deepdale Community Centre, Deepdale Lane, Boston Spa, Wetherby Second Tuesday of the month at 2pm 11/03/14 AGM and buffet lunch (prebooking essential) 08/04/14 The Old Curiosity Shop: talk by Mr D Drummond 13/05/14 Night shift at York Minster: talk by Mr R Pawsey

Bradford Mr N Griffiths SECRETARY 01274 586410 Conference Room, Centenary Court, St Blaise Way Third Tuesday of each month at 2pm 18/03/14 An apothecary’s assistant: talk by Mrs Astrid Hansen 15/04/14 Eve: Three destinies: talk by Geoff and Marsha Thorndike 20/05/14 An open meeting to welcome new members


Gateshead Elsa Jackson CHAIRMAN 0191 267 4728 Gateshead Legion Club, 142 Coatsworth Road, Gateshead (please note new venue) First Thursday of the month from 10am to 12 noon

Harrogate and Ripon Margaret Terry SECRETARY 01423 885297 Wesley Chapel (Lower Hall), Oxford Street. Venue may vary from March 2014 as the premises are being renovated. Third Thursday of each month at 2.15pm 20/03/14 Talk or Slides: Alex Eckford. Contact the Secretary for details of the venue and date 17/04/14 Talk or Slides: Alex Eckford. Contact the Secretary for details of the venue and date 15/05/14 Contact the Secretary for details of the venue and date.

Horsforth, Rawdon and District Mrs M J Taylor 0113 267 8110 Venue varies. We meet in local hostelries for lunch. Please contact Mrs Taylor for more details. Last Tuesday of each month at 12.30pm

Hull Brian Mitchell TREASURER 01482 653973 Age UK Healthy Living Centre, Porter Street, Hull Third Tuesday of the month at 2.15pm 18/03/14 Travels around the world: talk by Mrs Helen Burns 15/04/14 Radio nostalgia: talk by Terry Richards 20/05/14 The Hull link to Grace Darling: talk by Philip Walker

Middlesbrough Lilian Lloyd SECRETARY 01642 315439 St. Marys Centre, 82-90 Corporation Road, Middlesbrough Last Tuesday of the month at 2pm 25/03/14 Bring and Buy and team quiz 29/04/14 AGM and musical quiz 27/05/14 TBA

Newcastle West Mrs E Jackson CHAIRMAN 0191 267 4728 Bentinck Social Club, Bentinck Road, Newcastle upon Tyne Second Wednesday of each month at 10am to 12 Noon

Sunderland and Washington Ivan Bell SECRETARY 0191 549 4130 Age UK, Bradbury House, Stockton Road, Sunderland (1st Floor Room) First Monday of each month 2pm to 3.30pm (except May)

Whitley Bay Peter Harris MBE CHAIRMAN 0191 447 4066 Age UK Centre, Park Avenue, Whitley Bay Second Thursday of the month 10.30am to 12 noon 25/03/14 Spring social buffet 05/05/14 Summer holiday to Wales (5 to 9 May)

WALES AND WELSH BORDERS Caerphilly Mr Gwion Lewis TREASURER 029 2086 8643 robertgwion@talktalk.net No.2 Meeting Room, Caerphilly New Library, The Twyn, Caerphilly (please note new venue) Second Monday every month at 10.15am (please note change of day) 10/03/14 Age Concern Cymru Gwent: talk by Mrs Debbie Johnston 14/04/14 TBA 12/05/14 The Gentry Houses of Gelligaer, including Llancaiach Fawr: illustrated talk by Mrs Jean Kember

Church Stretton John Brewer SECRETARY 01694 722965 johnbrewer1@talktalk.net Mayfair Community Centre, Easthope Road, Church Stretton First Friday of the month at 2.30pm: with additional events as well 07/03/14 Church Stretton Gardening Club – talk by Mrs Margaret Mercer (2.30pm at Mayfair) 04/04/14 AGM and tea party (2.30pm at Mayfair) 06/05/14 Day trip to Hampton Court Garden, near Leominster (9.30am)

Llandudno Mrs B A Rennie ASSISTANT SECRETARY 01492 876238 Queen’s Hotel, The Promenade, Llandudno First Tuesday of each month at 10.30am for coffee mornings and third Tuesday for lunches/ walks 18/03/14 Lunch at Black Cat followed by a walk 15/04/14 Lunch at Black Cat followed by a walk 20/05/14 Spring lunch at the Queen’s Hotel

Llanishen (Cardiff) Mary Corke SECRETARY 029 2073 3427 Park End Presbyterian Church Hall, Rhyd-yPenau Road, Cardiff CF14 0NZ First Tuesday of each month at 10am 04/03/14 Russian history: talk by Graham Penn 01/04/14 On the banks of the Nile: talk by Alistair McGee 06/05/14 Care and repair: speaker TBA

Ludlow Peter Waite LIAISON 01584 872639 peter.waite@dsl.pipex.com Local public houses, various venues, in and around Ludlow Third Tuesday of each month at 12.30pm

Neath/Port Talbot Mrs E Northcott CHAIRMAN 01639 887851 Moose Hall, Castle Street, Neath Last Wednesday of each month at 2pm 26/03/14 An investiture at Windsor Castle: talk by Olive Newton 30/04/14 World War I: talk by Andrew Vollans 28/05/14 Swansea Castle: talk by Ray Savage

Oswestry Ruth Haile CHAIRMAN 01691 650993 The Wynnstay Hotel, Church Street, Oswestry First Tuesday of each month at 10.30am

04/03/14 The world famous Froncysllte male voice choir: talk with music by Trevor Wilford 01/04/14 Stones: talk by Geoff Evans 06/05/14 The seven ages of man: talk by David Ryan 13/05/14 Spring lunch

Swansea Mrs Sylvia Edgell CHAIRMAN/SECRETARY 01792 851125 sylviaedgell@btinternet.com The Vestry Hall, St Mary’s Church, Swansea Last Friday of each month at 2pm, plus St David’s Day lunch 04/03/14 St. David’s Day lunch at the Vanilla Pod, Swansea College at 12.30 28/03/14 Japan: talk by Myrtle Prowse 25/04/14 Talk with keyboard: talk by Robin Campbell 30/05/14 Tanzania: talk by Maggie Cornelius

Whitchurch (Cardiff) Mrs Mary Minty SECRETARY 029 2061 4445 Ararat Baptist Church, Plas Treoda, Whitchurch, Cardiff Second Wednesday of the month at 10am 12/03/14 Laura Carpenter, medical herbalist 09/04/14 Chairman’s contribution 14/05/14 TBA

Ynys Mon (Anglesey) Mr Eric Maynard CHAIRMAN 01407 720146 Please contact the Chairman for venue details. Second Tuesday of each month at 12.30pm for lunch

MIDDLE ENGLAND Amersham Lavinia Syson SECRETARY 01753 884992 michelsyson267@btinternet.com The Community Centre, Chiltern Avenue,amersham First Wednesday of the month at 2.30pm. Walks take place every third Wednesday of the month. Please contact Jim Campbell on 01494 722558 for details.

Banbury Anne Garton SECRETARY 01295 750151 agarton@btinternet.com Hanwell Fields Community Centre, Rotary Way, Banbury Second Tuesday of each month at 2.15: 4.15pm 11/03/14 The Mitford sisters: talk by Gillian Cane and Raffle 08/04/14 Local nature: illustrated talk by Graham Soden 13/05/14 Social afternoon: cream tea, raffle and quiz

Bedford Patricia Waters SECRETARY 01234 347443 Bunyan Meeting, Mill Street, Bedford First Tuesday of each month at 10am 04/03/14 Coffee morning and talk by Oakhouse Foods 01/04/14 Coffee morning with speaker from Stepping Stones 06/05/14 Coffee morning: ‘The good old days’

Birmingham June Oakley CHAIRMAN 01952 604922 Please note all meetings will now take place at Five Ways House, Islington Road, Five Ways, Edgbaston Third Wednesday of each month at 11am www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014

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Bromsgrove Mrs Catherine Kealy LOCAL CONTACT 01527 876166 Bromsgrove Golf Club, Stratford Road, Bromsgrove First Wednesday of each month at 11.30am for coffee. Bar snacks and lunches also available.

Coalville and Ashby Terry Watson CHAIRMAN 01530 835373 Thringstone Community Centre, The Green, Thringstone Third Wednesday each month 2pm to 4pm

19/03/14 Lunch at Rowberry’s at 12.30 16/04/14 Coffee morning 21/05/14 Coffee morning

Lincoln City Jannette Hook SECRETARY 01522 803412 Mothers Union Centre, St. Benedicts Church, St. Benedicts Square, Lincoln First Wednesday of the month at 10.30am 05/03/14 Tax, care and toy boys: talk 02/04/14 Coffee morning and Bring and Buy 07/05/14 Coffee morning

Louth

Mrs J Turner CHAIRMAN 024 76 465382 Room 2, Gilbert Richard Centre, Broadway, Earlsdon Third Tuesday of each month at 2pm

Mrs Margaret Bradley SECRETARY 01472 388928 Elizabeth Court, Church Street, Louth Second and fourth Thursday of the month at 10.30am (please note change from first and third Thursday)

Donnington

Luton

Betty Pugh CHAIRMAN 01952 811355 Turreff Hall, Turreff Avenue, Donnington Every Monday at 1pm (except Bank Holidays)

John Barrett SECRETARY 01582 519886 barrettjb@ntlworld.com The Chaul End Centre, 515 Dunstable Road, Luton First Monday of every month at 2.00pm (except Bank Holidays) 03/03/14 Brenda will talk to us about Hawaii 07/04/14 Street pastors: talk 05/05/14 No meeting (Bank Holiday) 19/05/14 Outing to Finchingfield

Coventry

Dunstable and Leighton Buzzard Mrs Janet Bliss SECRETARY 01582 661795 j.bliss35@btinternet.com Scout HQ, Grovebury Road, Leighton Buzzard First Wednesday of the month at 2pm 05/03/14 Dogs saving lives: talk about medical detection dogs. Raffle and book table. 02/04/14 Dunstable born and bred: a talk about Gary Cooper. Raffle and book table. 07/05/14 Laughter is the best medicine: stories to make you smile. Bring and Buy, raffle and book table.

Lutterworth

Rutland Mrs Peggy Brown CHAIRMAN 01780 480314 Various locations for pub lunches Third Wednesday of each month

Shefford Eileen Devereux CHAIRMAN 01462 814765 Community Hall, Ampthill Road, Shefford Third Tuesday of the month at 10am: 12 noon (except May 12 noon: 2pm) 18/03/14 Light hearted quiz 15/04/14 Speaker 20/05/14 Meal at a local pub

Skegness Ray Morris SECRETARY 01754 762060 ray@bermond.co.uk Phillip Grove Community Rooms, Church Road South, Skegness First Thursday of each month from 10am to 12 noon

Sleaford and Ancaster Mike Smith CHAIRMAN 01526 833273 mjs_consultation@hotmail.com Sleaford: Bristol Bowls Club, Boston Road, Sleaford. Ancaster: Angel Court, Ancaster Sleaford: First Thursday of the month from 10.15am to 12 noon. Ancaster: Second Wednesday of the month from 10.15am to 12 noon

Solihull

Mrs J Law CHAIRWOMAN 01455 552141 Cricket Pavillion, Coventry Road, Lutterworth Third Monday of each month at 10am

Margaret Smith SECRETARY 0121 744 6150 me.smith@talktalk.net Solihull Assembly Rooms, Poplar Road, Solihull Second Monday of each month at 10am

Melton Mowbray

Stamford

Mr M Johnson CHAIRMAN 01664 566821 School Room, United Reform Church, Chapel Street, Melton Mowbray First Tuesday of each month at 1.45pm

Mrs B Smith CHAIRMAN/SECRETARY 01780 755437 Tenter Court, Wharf Road, Stamford Last Thursday of the month at 2.15pm

Eric Marsh GROUP LIAISON 01386 421460 ericbrenda@btinternet.com Foyer of the Methodist Chapel, Bridge Street, Evesham Second Tuesday of each month at 10.30am. We hold tea and coffee mornings and occasionally have lunch afterwards.

Milton Keynes

Wellington

Grantham

Northampton

Mr Maurice Whincup CHAIRMAN 01476 572425 mewhincup@gmail.com Church of the Ascension Hall, Edinburgh Road, Grantham First Wednesday every month from 10am to noon

Mrs Betna Bradley SECRETARY 01604 454501 Holy Sepulchre Church Rooms, Church Lane, Northampton Alternate Thursday mornings at 10am

Evesham

Hucclecote Mrs B Arnold SECRETARY 01452 618069 Evangelical Church, Colwell Avenue, Hucclecote, Gloucester First Thursday of the month at 2pm, as well as the additional carvery lunch 06/03/14 AGM 19/03/14 Carvery lunch 03/04/14 Lives of narrowboat women: talk 01/05/14 The strange history behind your cup of tea: talk

Kidderminster Pam Hussey LOCAL CONTACT 01562 755632 Various venues Third Wednesday of each month at 11am (except when lunching out)

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Pamela White SECRETARY 01908 677289 Centrecom, 602 North Row, Secklow Gate West First Monday of each month at 1.30pm (second Monday if first is a Bank Holiday)

Nottingham Pam Bradley CHAIR 0115 938 4676 The Nottingham Mechanics, 3 North Sherwood Street, Nottingham Second Wednesday of each month from 10.15am to 12 noon 12/03/14 AGM 09/04/14 Come and hear about ‘Water babies’ 14/05/14 The Yemen: presentation by Mike Kelley

Nuneaton Rachel Homer SECRETARY 02476 385845 rachel.homer@tesco.net The Sycamore Tree, 2 Chapel Street, Nuneaton (next to the Ropewalk) First Tuesday of each month at 11am for Coffee mornings.

Emrys Jones CHAIRMAN 01952 254252 emjones7wizard@yahoo.co.uk Belmont Community Hall, New Street, Wellington, Telford First Thursday of the month from 10am: 12 noon

Wigston Mrs J Collins VICE CHAIRMAN 0116 288 7802 The Elms Social and Service Club (formerly Royal British Legion), Launceston Road, Wigston Second and fourth Mondays of each month from 1.30: 4.00pm (Bank Holidays permitting: see below) 10/03/14 My childhood years: talk by Mrs Trudi Whiles 24/03/14 AGM with tea/coffee and cakes 14/04/14 Sweetness from strength: talk by Mike Leonard 28/04/14 An apothecary in the 1640s: talk by Trevor Parr (in costume) 12/05/14 Waterways of Russia: talk by Dr Sue Ablett 19/05/14 Meal out (TBA)

Worcester Leigh Watkins SECRETARY 01905 774034 Perdiswell Young Peoples Leisure Centre, (A38) Droitwich Road (opposite Checketts Lane) Second Wednesday of each month at 1pm 12/03/14 AGM followed by Legal Matters: talk by McClures Solicitors (CSRF Partners)


09/04/14 Worcestershire Wildlife Trust: talk by Ann Williams 14/05/14 Musical quiz with Janet Hughes

EASTERN ENGLAND and EAST ANGLIA Attleborough Mrs D Parker SECRETARY 01953 456958 Methodist Church Hall, London Road, Attleborough Third Thursday of the month from 10am: 12 noon 20/03/14 Speaker from Contact Care 17/04/14 Attleborough pubs in the Past: talk by Cliff Amos 15/05/14 Bring and Buy sale

Aylsham and District Pam Bailey SOCIAL SECRETARY 01263 731421 Friends Meeting House, Peggs Yard, Red Lion Street, Aylsham Second Monday of each month at 10am (unless it’s a Bank Holiday) 10/03/14 History of soap: talk 14/04/14 John’s Film Show 12/05/14 The muffin man: talk

Billericay Mr J R Smith LOCAL CONTACT 01277 622156 Various venues for lunches at 12.30pm

Bury St Edmunds Mrs Doreen Ginn CHAIRMAN 01284 755256 West End Home Guard Club, Abbot Road, Bury St. Edmunds Second Wednesday of each month at 10am 12/03/14 Congo, then and now: talk by Brian Davies 09/04/14 Hearing dogs for deaf people: talk by Margo Harrison 14/05/14 The English Gypsy caravan: talk by Geoffrey Kay

Colchester Joan Gomer SECRETARY 01206 794656 Straight Road Community Centre, 329 Straight Road, Colchester Third Monday each month at 2pm (with exception in April) 17/03/14 Fire prevention: talk by Les Nicoll 14/04/14 The story teller: talk by John Lilley (please note this is the second Monday) 19/05/14 A cop with a sense of humour: talk by Bill Pirie

Croxley Green and Rickmansworth Frank Brown 01923 779070 fctbrown@btinternet.com Red Cross Centre, 1 Community Way (off Barton Way), Croxley Green Second Thursday of alternate months (ie March and May) at 10.15am and on the first Monday of intervening months for a pub lunch from 12 noon.

Hertford Mrs Olive Smith CHAIRMAN 01992 550753 Methodist Church Hall, Ware Road, Hertford First Monday of each month from 2pm to 4pm (except Bank Holidays) with some additional events 03/03/14 A trip to America: talk by David Attrill MBE 19/03/14 Pub lunch at the cricketers, Clavering 07/04/14 Living with a guide dog: talk by Mrs Sue Gilkes 12/05/14 The Abbeyfield Society: talk by Mrs Val Langsford 21/05/14 Trip to Southend on Sea

Ilford Mrs Sylvia Green SOCIAL SECRETARY 020 8594 5284 sylviagreen@rocketmail.com St. Andrew’s Church Hall, The Drive, Ilford Third Monday of the month at 1.30pm except for April 17/03/14 Papua New Guinea: illustrated talk by Angela Schaffter 14/04/14 AGM (please note this is the second Monday as the next Monday is a Bank Holiday) 19/05/14 The Memories of an East End Childhood: talk by Ann Hardy

Ipswich Eva Stevens SECRETARY 01473 688040 evajs@yahoo.co.uk Museum Street Methodist Church Hall, Blackhorse Lane, Ipswich First Wednesday of each month at 2pm and some additional social events as well 05/03/14 Handbell ringing: Margaret Mellor 26/03/14 Lunch at Peak Lodge at 12.30pm 02/04/14 Creating a living landscape: Suffolk Wildlife Trust 07/05/14 Carry on cooking: Gavin Hodge 14/05/14 Lunch at Peak Lodge at 12.30pm

Loughton Eric Adams CHAIRMAN 020 8508 7207 Jazz Archive Room, Loughton Library, Traps Hill, Loughton Third Monday of each month at 2pm 17/03/14 Discussion on local affairs 21/04/14 No meeting (Easter Monday) 19/05/14 Holiday memories

Lowestoft Kate McNamara TREASURER/SECRETARY 01502 714380 kate_mcn@talktalk.net Victoria Hotel, Kirkley Cliff, Lowestoft and ExServicemen’s Club, Lowestoft First (at Victoria Hotel) and Third Wednesday (Ex-Servicemen’s Club) of each month at 10.30am

Mildenhall

Mrs Edna McNaughton SECRETARY 01279 865102 edian.mcnaughton@tesco.net Toby Carvery, Harlow First Friday of the month at 12 noon

Alan Benton CHAIRMAN 01638 715492 Mildenhall Social Club, Recreation Way First Tuesday of every month at 2pm with some additional events as well 04/03/14 Charlotte Prud’Homme: Extended music to movement 01/04/14 Cooking for one: Diane Patrick from AgeUK 09/04/14 Trip to Norwich Theatre to see ‘Cats’ 06/05/14 Speaker (TBA)

Harpenden

Newmarket

Mr Tony Thomson GROUP REPRESENTATIVE 01582 713250

Mike Hastings CHAIRMAN 01638 661065 michaelhastings@mypostoffice.co.uk

Harlow

The Ancient Order of Foresters Hall, Kingston Passage, Newmarket (please note new venue) Second Wednesday of each month at 2.15pm 12/03/14 Victoria Fordham, poet: talk by Mike Petty 09/04/14 Life in colour: talk by Mandy Martin 14/05/14 Gredley bus trip

Norwich Mary Weatherhead SECRETARY 01603 410821 Reading Room, Doughty’s Hospital, Golden Dog Lane Second Monday of each month at 10am for 10.30am 10/03/14 Mardle and squit: talk by Mrs Julie Slaughter 14/04/14 Thailand: talk by Mrs E WilsonStaniforth 12/05/14 Boudica: talk by Dr Natasha Hutcheson

Radlett Mrs Shirley Herbert SECRETARY 020 8953 2999 Local restaurants for coffee or lunch Monthly: details from the Secretary

Rayleigh Mrs F Cohen SOCIAL SECRETARY 01702 342426 Cloister West, Parish Rooms, Rayleigh Church, Rectory Garth (off Hockley Road), Rayleigh First Thursday of each month from 2pm to 4pm 06/03/14 Canals Talk III: by Bob Dulgarno

Rochford Mrs F Cohen SOCIAL SECRETARY 01702 342426 Parish Council Rooms, 82 West Street, Rochford Third Thursday of each month from 1.45pm to 3.45pm 20/03/14 Shoebury Garrison: By Bob Dulgarno

Saffron Walden Mrs E Mansfield CHAIRPERSON 01279 755458 The Chequers Public House, Cambridge Road, Ugley, Bishops Stortford Second Monday in the month (around four times a year) for lunch. Please contact the Chairman for details.

Shoeburyness Mrs F Cohen SOCIAL SECRETARY 01702 342426 The Salvation Army Hall, Frobisher Road, Shoeburyness First Tuesday of each month from 2pm to 4pm 04/03/14 Canals Talk III: Bob Dulgarno

St. Albans Mrs B G Hill SECRETARY 01727 858198 barbara.hill5@ntlworld.com Friends Meeting House, Upper Lattimore Road, St. Albans First Thursday of the month at 10am

Stevenage and Baldock Helen Leisk SECRETARY 01438 355131 helen.leisk@firenet.uk.net United Reformed Church, Cuttys Lane, Stevenage First Thursday of every month at 2pm, with some additional events as well 06/03/14 How the potato shaped history: talk by Mark Davis 18/03/14 Mystery coach trip 03/04/14 Bletchley Park: talk by Terry Webb 01/05/14 The fishermen’s mission: talk by Paul Jarrett 08/05/14 Coach trip to Blenheim Palace www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014

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Swaffham David Moore CHAIRMAN 01760 723740 Methodist Church Hall, London Street, Swaffham Third Tuesday of each month at 10.15am

Westcliff-on-Sea Mrs F Cohen SOCIAL SECRETARY 01702 342426 Balmoral Community Centre, Salisbury Avenue, Westcliff on Sea Fourth Wednesday of each month from 2pm to 4pm 26/03/14 AGM 23/04/14 Quiz/beetle drive

Wickford Peter Blake CHAIRMAN and SECRETARY 01268 583060 Christchurch Hall, R/O 44 High Street, Wickford Second Thursday each month 1.30pm to 3.30pm

07/05/14 Basics Hampshire: talk by Lynne Caine 16/05/14 Outing to Hawk Conservancy Trust, Weyhill 28/05/14 Open meeting starting at 2pm (includes cream tea)

Bexhill Hilary Markham SECRETARY 01424 210985 Bexhill Sailing Club, Marina, Bexhill-on-Sea Fourth Tuesday of each month at 10am 25/03/14 Guide Dogs: talk by Barbara Grice 22/04/14 Receiving the MBE: talk by Megan Traice (Chairman) 27/05/14 Talk by J Linsley

Bognor Regis and Chichester

Mrs Pam Rogers GROUP SECRETARY 01376 514539 Methodist Church Hall, Guithavon Street Last Tuesday of each month at 10.30am

Heather Olive CHAIRMAN 01903 778543 Jeneses Community Arts Centre, 45 Linden Road, Bognor Regis Last Thursday of each month from 2pm to 4pm 27/03/14 Easter Parade competition and quiz 24/04/14 St Georges Parade and Red, White and Blue quiz 29/05/14 Speaker TBC

SOUTHERN ENGLAND

Bournemouth: Boscombe and Southbourne

Witham

Aldershot Gloria Wetherill SECRETARY/SOCIAL SECRETARY 01252 345318 rayglo227@talktalk.net Holy Trinity Church, Galpin Hall, Windsor Way, Aldershot Second Thursday of every month at 1.30pm to 3.30pm

Arun: formerly Littlehampton Jim Underwood TREASURER 01903 709033 jimunderwood9@hotmail.com St Joseph’s Convent, Franciscan Way. Please use the entrance in East Street if you are arriving by car. Second Wednesday of each month at 2pm 12/03/14 AGM 09/04/14 Nelson: talk by Steve Harris 14/05/14 Old Littlehampton:talk by Juliet Nye

Ascot and Sunningdale John Cook CHAIRMAN 01344 429391 johnwgc@btinternet.com De Vere Venues, Sunningdale Park, Larch Avenue, Ascot Third Friday of each month at 12 noon 21/03/14 Jack the Ripper: talk by David Bullock 11/04/14 Dropping the habit: talk by Marion Dante (second Friday as the third is Good Friday) 16/05/14 Spring Fair and AGM

Basingstoke David Cowling PUBLICITY OFFICER 01256 327806 Brookvale Village Hall, Lower Brook Street, Basingstoke First Wednesday of each month at 10am with some additional events 05/03/14 AGM and lunch 25/03/14 Outing to Cheltenham (do as you please trip) 02/04/14 The sex lives of kings: talk by Tony Stratford 28/04/14 Outing to Eltham Palace (includes entry to House and Gardens)

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Paul Tabor CHAIRMAN 01202 422493 paul.tabor@tesco.net St Katherine’s Church Hall, Church Road, Southbourne First Wednesday of each month at 10am with some additional events 05/03/14 An Ecuadorian adventure: talk by Jean McMillan 27/03/14 Bournemouth District lunch 02/04/14 Group AGM and quiz 07/05/14 Do you remember the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s?: talk by Brian Toft

Bournemouth: Central Alan Carter 01202 292720

Bournemouth: Christchurch and Highcliffe Paul Tabor 01202 422493 paul.tabor@tesco.net

Bournemouth: New Forest Sandy Whittaker CHAIRMAN 023 8028 2157 New Milton Community Centre, Osborne Road, New Milton Second Tuesday of each month at 10.15am with some additional events 11/03/14 Discovering Dorset: talk by Rev Stewart Timbrell 27/03/14 Bournemouth District lunch 08/04/14 AGM 13/05/14 Talk by Howard Nichols (subject TBA)

Bournemouth: Ringwood and District Ron Fisher CHAIRMAN 01202 896315 ronf.nottington@homecall.co.uk Greyfriars Community Centre, Ringwood First Friday of each month at 10am with some additional events 07/03/14 Remembering great entertainers: talk by Stuart Gillespie 27/03/14 Bournemouth District Lunch

04/04/14 Group AGM. Books, Jigsaws, CDs/ DVDs and Bring and Buy 09/05/14 History of the Sandbanks Chain Ferry: talk by Brian Andrews

Bournemouth: Swanage Mrs Irene Greenway 01929 423394

Bournemouth: Wimborne and Ferndown Eric Basire SECRETARY 01202 897158 eric-rita@tiscali.co.uk Ferndown Village Hall, Church Road, Ferndown Third Wednesday of each month at 10.30am. Skittles meetings, New Forest walks and other events are held from time to time: ask Eric Basire for details.

Brighton and Hove Mrs Anne Cobby saglibcob@googlemail.com Ventnor Hall, Blatchington Road, Hove First Wednesday of the month at 2.15pm

Burgess Hill Mike Mason CHAIRMAN 01444 245289 michael_mason6@hotmail.com Millfield Suite, Cyprus Hall, Cyprus Road, Burgess Hill Fourth Wednesday of each month at 10am for Coffee mornings

Chandlers Ford Ken Willcocks CHAIRMAN 023 8076 0102 Chandlers Ford Community Centre, Hursley Road, Chandlers Ford First Friday of the month at 10am 07/03/14 AGM 04/04/14 Have gravel will travel: talk by Derek Drew 02/05/14 Snowballs in June: talk by David Allport

Crawley Jim Piercey CHAIRMAN 01293 409332 Bill Buck Room, Crawley Library, Southgate Avenue, Crawley Fourth Friday of the month at 2pm

Emsworth and Havant Ralph Whitehouse CHAIRMAN 01243 374081 Emsworth Community Centre, Church Path, Emsworth First Friday of each month at 10am

Hastings and St Leonards John Hall CHAIRMAN 01424 813355 All Saints Church Hall, All Saints Street, Old Town Third Tuesday of each month from 10am to 12 noon

Newbury Roger Walker CHAIRMAN 01635 44575 colonelrog@hotmail.com St. Johns Church Room, Newtown Road, Newbury Second Monday of the month at 2.15pm with some additional events 10/03/14 Citizens Advice Bureau: talk 27/03/14 Skittles evening at Thatcham FC 07/04/14 Committee meeting, Broadway House at 2.15pm 14/04/14 Chocolate: from tree to treat: talk 12/05/14 Local tourist attractions: talk 15/05/14 Pub lunch: venue tbc 26/05/14 Group Holiday to Llandudno (26 to 30 May)


Reading West and Tilehurst David Cox SECRETARY 0118 958 6311 United Reformed Church Hall, Polsted Road, off Armour Road Last Wednesday of the month at 2pm unless otherwise stated 26/03/14 Musical bingo with Marrion 30/04/14 The changing face of reading: talk by Mr A Copeland 28/05/14 TBC

Southsea Mrs Emily Kitching SECRETARY 023 92 785427 emilyshiels@hotmail.com St. Simon’s Church Hall, Waverley Road, Southsea Second Wednesday of the month at 10.30 and fourth Wednesday of the month at 2.30pm, with some additional events as well 12/03/14 Coffee morning 20/03/14 Tour of the Groundlings Theatre 26/03/14 Canine partners: hearing dogs 09/04/14 Coffee morning 23/04/14 TBA 14/05/14 Coffee morning and cakes and provisions stall 28/05/14 Looking forward to summer: Brian Kidd

Stubbington Peter Stilwell SECRETARY 023 92 527346 amy_stilwell@hotmail.com Catholic Church Hall, Bells Lane, Stubbington Second Thursday of each month at 2pm (meeting) and last Tuesday of each month at 10.30am (Coffee morning). On the Tuesday following the Thursday meeting we have a pub lunch. On the last Thursday of the month we have lunch at a local pub and play skittles.

Tadley Mr D MacLean CHAIRMAN 0118 970 1290 Tadley Community Centre, Newchurch Road, Tadley First Thursday of each month at 1.15pm for 1.45pm (except in unusual circumstances when advance notice is given to our members) 06/03/14 Hawk Conservancy Trust: talk 03/04/14 Tales of the unexpected: talk by Alan Copeland 01/05/14 Gorgeous Galapagos: talk by Gwen Barton

Worthing David Keeling CHAIRMAN 01903 248663 United Reformed Church Hall, Shaftesbury Avenue (just south of Durrington Railway Bridge: entrance in Barrington Road) Third Tuesday of each month at 10am (coffee at 9.45am) 18/03/14 Coroner’s office: talk by Jenny Fifield 15/04/14 Local policing: talk by Jo Banks 20/05/14 The Worthing Journal and journalism: talk by Paul Holden

SOUTH WEST ENGLAND Amesbury Mrs Freda Hedge SECRETARY 01980 590499 Antrobus House, 39 Salisbury Road,amesbury First Tuesday of each month at 2pm (unless otherwise stated)

Barnstaple

Chippenham

Peter Mumby CHAIRMAN 01271 815021 Committee Room, Roundswell Community Centre, Roundswell, Barnstaple Last Friday in the month at 11am in February and May, and 10am in March and April 28/03/14 Committee meeting 10am followed by coffee morning at 11am 25/04/14 AGM 10am followed by coffee morning at 11am 30/05/14 Coffee morning at 11am

David Gardner CHAIRMAN 01249 658431 Rotary Hall, Station Hill, Chippenham First Wednesday of each month at 2pm

Bath Roy Burnett CHAIRMAN 01225 426583 St. John’s Parish Hall, South Parade, Bath First Thursday of each month at 10.30am for Coffee mornings as well as events listed below. Short Mat Bowls held every Friday at 2pm at The Scout Hut, The Avenue, Bath 06/03/14 Coffee morning 03/04/14 Coffee morning 09/04/14 Witches of Eastwick at the Theatre Royal 01/05/14 Coffee morning 02/05/14 Table for Two at the Roper Theatre 21/05/14 Skittles Lunch

Bideford Griggs Close Community Centre, Northam, Bideford Second Friday in the month at 10.30am. Please contact Fellowship Office for further information on 020 8691 7411

Blandford Forum Mrs M Chambers SECRETARY 01258 456572 Contact Secretary for venue details. Second Friday of each month at 11am

Bradford-on-Avon

Crediton Miss M Steer CHAIRMAN 01363 866256 Various venues: contact the Chairman for details. We mostly meet at The Rose and Crown, Sandford, Crediton First Friday of each month at 12 noon for lunch when there is a trip planned. Trips are announced in the local paper.

Dawlish Mrs M Carter SECRETARY 01626 888275 The Manor House, Old Town Street Second Friday of each month at 2pm 14/03/14 Spring lunch 11/04/14 50s Music: talk by Mr R Lampstone 09/05/14 Visit to Dawlish Museum

Dorchester Mike Rogers CHAIRMAN/TREASURER 01308 420755 michael@mikerogers3.plus.com Dorset Youth HQ, Lubbecke Way, Dorchester Third Thursday of the month at 10.15am for 10.30am till around 1pm

Exmouth Carol Brett SECRETARY 01395 442671 Wings Club (formerly RAFA), Imperial Road, Exmouth First Wednesday of each month at 10am 05/03/14 Coffee morning with AGM 02/04/14 Coffee morning 07/05/14 Coffee morning

Liskeard and Pensilva

Mr P F Nuttall SECRETARY 01225 862919 United Reformed Church Hall, St. Margarets Street, Bradford on Avon Second Monday of each month at 2.15pm with additional events as well 10/03/14 Post a letter: talk by Michael Turner 17/03/14 Spring lunch: Leigh Park Hotel 14/04/14 Shackleton’s unfinished journey: talk by Veronica Shaw 28/04/14 Lunch at the Dog and Fox 12/05/14 Old buildings of Bradford on Avon: talk by Pam Slocombe 29/05/14 Coach outing: West Somerset Railway: Bishop Lydeard to Minehead

Shirley Waye CHAIRMAN AND SECRETARY 01579 346089 shirleywaye@gmail.com Refreshment Rooms, Liskeard Town Hall, 3 West Street, Liskeard Last Wednesday of each month at 10amm with additional events as well 05/03/14 Hall for Cornwall: ice show 26/03/14 The poetry of David Prowse: talk by Val Budgen-Cawsey 23/04/14 Mystery trip 30/04/14 Little Harbour: illustrated talk by Judy Pride 14/05/14 Visit to Padstow and boat trip. Fish and chip supper, Lanivet 28/05/14 Kim Coumbe: Introduction to Anchor and Modern Care

Brixham

Minehead

Mrs Brenda Smith SECRETARY 01803 559466 brenda54@talktalk.net Various local restaurants, usually Waterside Paignton Usually second Thursday of the month at 12 noon: contact Brenda Smith for details.

Isabel Dobson 01643 703199 Foxes Hotel, The Esplanade, Minehead Coffee mornings on the last Tuesday of the month at 10.15am (except March)

Burnham-on-Sea Joyce Beard SECRETARY/TREASURER 01278 782650 ohbejoyful2003@yahoo.co.uk Burnham Area Youth Centre, Cassis Close, Burnham on Sea Fourth Tuesday of each month from 10.30am

Chard Gordon Baker SECRETARY 01460 73333 The Donyatt Bowling Club, Ilminster Third Thursday of the month at 10.30am

Princetown Mike Fitzpatrick SECRETARY 01822 890799 mikeandkate3@talktalk.net Prince of Wales, Tavistock Road, Princetown First Thursday of the month at 12.30pm and other dates listed below 06/03/14 Monthly meeting with guest speaker Doreen Bell, from Hearing Dogs for the Deaf 03/04/14 Monthly meeting with guest speaker, Colin Vosper, from the Kelly Tin Mine Preservation Society www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014

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23/04/14 St. George’s Day Lunch at a secret destination (only the Social Secretary and coach driver know where!) 15/05/14 Coach Tour of North Devon visiting a couple of attractions and incorporating an early dinner in a select hostelry

Salisbury Plain Mr Roy German SECRETARY 01980 653446 royandvi@live.co.uk The Village Hall, High Street, Durrington Third Tuesday of each month at 2.30pm, with some additional events as well 18/03/14 The Fovant Badges: talk 07/04/14 Holiday to Cliftonville (7 to 11 April) 15/04/14 The ladies of the tower: talk 20/05/14 Iona, the dove and the wild goose: talk 27/05/14 Outing to Exbury Gardens

Sidmouth Margaret Adams CHAIRMAN 01395 577622 rjadams39@waitrose.com Sidholme Hotel, Elysian Fields, Temple Street Second Wednesday of each month at 10.25am and an additional event 26/03/14 Lunch at Moore’s, Newton Poppleford, 12.30 for 12.45pm

Somerton Colin Mclntyre SECRETARY 01458 223953 The Two Brewers, Leigh Road, Street Third Tuesday of the month at 11.30am

Tamar/Tavy (Tavistock) David Askew SECRETARY 01822 612274 daveandjennyaskew@gmail.com Burrator Inn, Princetown Road, Dousland, Yelverton Second Thursday of the month at 12.30pm 13/03/14 The Burrator Reservoir: talk by Neil Reeves

Taunton Mick Grigg CHAIRMAN 01823 272046 mfgrigg@talktalk.net Lawns Social Club (formerly Royal British Legion Club), St. Mary Street, Taunton Second Friday of the month at 10.30am (unless public holiday in which case third Friday)

Trowbridge Peter Collins SECRETARY 01225 340580 csrftrow@which.net Old Manor Hotel, Trowle, Trowbridge/ Trowbridge Cricket Club, The County Ground, Lower Court, Trowbridge First Wednesday of each month at 10.30am (Old Manor Hotel) and the third Wednesday of each month at 2pm (Trowbridge Cricket Club) 05/03/14 Coffee morning at the Old Manor Hotel 19/03/14 Monthly Meeting and ‘Running a travel business’: talk by Margaret Chandler 02/04/14 Coffee morning at the Old Manor Hotel 16/04/14 Monthly Meeting and ‘Hearing aids’: talk by Rob Iles 07/05/14 Coffee morning at the Old Manor Hotel 21/05/14 TBA

60

SPRING 2014 www.csrf.org.uk

Westbury (Wiltshire)

Beckenham

Ken Holloway CHAIRMAN 01373 864049 kenmoholloway@metronet.co.uk Paragon Hall, Haynes Road, Westbury Third Monday of each month at 1.45pm for 2pm, with some additional outings 17/03/14 Life of a Tour Guide: Talk by Mrs R Wyeth 19/03/14 Outing to Oxford 16/04/14 Outing to Beaulieu Motor Museum 21/04/14 Butterflies of Britain: talk by Mr D Remington 19/05/14 Bhutan, land of the thunder dragon: Talk by Mrs F Fearne 21/05/14 Outing to Bournemouth

Eileen Morgan CHAIRMAN 020 8650 8784 Beckenham Public Hall, 4 Bromley Road, Beckenham First Tuesday of each month at 2pm

Westbury-on-Trym Beryl Webb SECRETARY 01454 614451 Studland Court, Henleaze Road, Henleaze First Thursday of each month at 2pm 06/03/14 Monologues, anecdotes, recitations etc: talk by Paul Evans 03/04/14 Life on the ocean wave: talk by Cyril Routley 01/05/14 Jasper and the Kings National Parks: talk by Chris Holloway

Weston-Super-Mare Alan Jackson CHAIRMAN 01275 858766 jackson-a21@sky.com Friends Meeting House, on the corner of High Street and Oxford Street, Weston-Super-Mare First and third Thursday of the month at 10am (for coffee mornings: other events listed below) 06/03/14 Coffee morning 11/03/14 Coach outing to Devizes and Lacock 20/03/14 Coffee morning 03/04/14 Coffee morning 08/04/14 Coach outing to Portsmouth 17/04/14 Coffee morning 01/05/14 Coffee morning 13/05/14 Coach outing to Gloucester and Warwick Railway

Weymouth Geoff Greenstreet SECRETARY 01305 832432 St. Nicholas Church, Buxton Road, Weymouth Second Thursday of each month at 2.30pm at St. Nicholas Church and fourth Wednesday for coffee mornings (unless otherwise stated) at the Coffee Shop in Weymouth Bay Methodist Church, Melcombe Avenue (near Green Hill) 13/03/14 TBA 26/03/14 Coffee morning 10/04/14 AGM 23/04/13 Coffee morning

Yate and District Donald Kirkham CHAIRMAN 01454 317242 donald@kirkham3.orangehome.co.uk Yate Parish Hall, Station Road, Yate Fourth Tuesday of each month at 2pm (except April) 25/03/14 Bristol Zoo: talk by Don Packham 29/04/14 Annual lunch 27/05/14 Travels with Silver Ring Choir: talk by Mrs Beach

Bexleyheath Brian O’Brien-Wheeler CHAIRMAN 020 8311 1608 St. Andrews Church Hall, Brampton Road, Bexleyheath First three Wednesdays in every month from 1.45 to 3.45pm. Every second Wednesday is a social afternoon. 05/03/14 Stairway to Heaven Memorial Trust: talk by Sandra Scotting 12/03/14 Social afternoon with quiz, bingo, etc 19/03/14 Tony Buckland, Entertainer 02/04/14 The humorous side of acting: talk by Jonathon Fryer 09/04/14 Social afternoon with quiz, bingo, etc 16/04/14 43rd Anniversary Celebrations 07/05/14 The Spirit of Invicta: talk by Bob Ogley 14/05/14 Social afternoon with quiz, bingo, etc

Camberley Anne Morris SECRETARY 01344 772419 anne.morris@btinternet.com High Cross Church, Knoll Road, Camberley Fourth Tuesday of each month at 2pm

Enfield Susan Bentley SECRETARY AND PROGRAMME 020 8360 4361 St. Andrew’s Church Hall, Silver Street, Enfield First Monday of the month at 10am (unless a Bank Holiday when it will be the second Monday) 03/03/14 A ‘Bygones’ Presentation by Ian Torrance 07/04/14 Women and their destiny: illustrated talk by Maggie Radcliffe 12/05/13 ‘It’s driving me mad’: humorous recollections by Bernard Ecker

Hounslow Roy Woods CHAIRMAN 020 8230 5533 United Reformed Church Hall, 114 Hanworth Road, Hounslow Second Tuesday of each month from 1.30 to 4pm 11/03/14 Birthday tea party 08/04/14 Life in the Diplomatic Service: illustrated talk by Michael Peacock 13/05/14 Another surprise package: illustrated talk by Tom Edbrooke

Kingston and District

LONDON AND SOUTH EAST ENGLAND

Mrs Jean Hall SECRETARY 020 8942 2309 Kingston Methodist Church Hall, Avenue Road, Fairfield South, Kingston Third Tuesday of each month at 2pm. For outings programme contact the Secretary. 18/03/14 AGM, Bring and Buy sale and quiz 15/04/14 TBA 20/05/14 TBA

Banstead and District

Leatherhead

Miss Marion Pevy SECRETARY/TREASURER 01737 812129 Banstead Methodist Church Hall, The Drive Last Tuesday of each month from 10.30am to 12 noon

Anne Thomson SECRETARY 01372 373258 anner.thomson@talktalk.net John Rumble Hall, Fetcham Village Hall, The Street, Fetcham First Friday of each month at 10am


07/03/14 Lunch at La Meridiana 04/04/14 AGM followed by Bring and Buy stall 02/05/14 Speaker TBA

London: Catford and Lewisham Doreen Hughes SECRETARY 020 8461 4800 St. Laurence Church Hall, Bromley Road, Catford Second Tuesday of the month at 10am 11/03/14 Coffee morning and The Crystal Palace Museum: talk by Barry McKay 08/04/14 Coffee morning and Jack Tar’s Sayings: talk by Cmdr John Dankerty RN 13/05/14 Coffee morning

London: Clapham SW4 and SW11 Miss M Farley SECRETARY 020 8870 7361 Staff Restaurant 4th Floor, PCS Headquarters, 160 Falcon Road, Clapham Junction First Thursday of each month at 10.15am. We also have a monthly lunch: for details please contact the Secretary

London: Dulwich and Norwood Miss M J Bacon SECRETARY 020 8761 2158 Railway Club, Selhurst Station Approach Fourth Tuesday of each month at 10.30am

London: Edmonton Mrs Sheila Lamonte CHAIRPERSON 020 8886 7873 Ambassador Room, Millfield House, Silver Street, London N18 Third Monday of each month from 10am to 12 noon 17/03/14 Around Kent: illustrated talk by Frank Bayford 28/04/14 Funny Girls: illustrated talk by Geoff Bowden 19/05/14 Plant and Bring and Buy sale followed by a game or quiz

London: Eltham

First Wednesday of the month at 10.15am. Please contact Fellowship Office (020 8691 7411) for further details.

London: Hendon Harry Hunt SECRETARY 020 8202 7647 harrycarman@hotmail.com Various venues each month for lunch: phone the Secretary for details First Thursday of every month at 12.30pm

London: Southbank SE17 Joy Creamer CHAIRPERSON 020 7407 2332 Penrose Tenants Hall, Penrose Estate, Walworth Second Wednesday of each month at 10am

London: Stockwell SW8 and SW9 Mr D Stannard SECRETARY 020 7720 0982 Job Centre Plus Offices, 246 Stockwell Road, Brixton Fourth Thursday of each month at 2pm

London: Streatham and Norbury: SW16 Mrs J E Winter SECRETARY 020 8764 6450 The Glebe Sheltered Housing Complex, Prentis Road, Streatham SW16 1QR Second Tuesday of each month at 2pm 11/03/14 Greenland: talk by Sue Henning 08/04/14 Produce and plants mini market 13/05/14 Collective legal solutions: talk

Maidstone Keith Hunter CHAIRMAN 01622 746792 Methodist Church Centre, Brewer Street, Maidstone Second Monday of the month at 2pm 10/03/14 Spring Fayre, quiz and raffle 14/04/14 Natural health products: talk 12/05/14 A musical presentation by joan burfind

Orpington Peter Standen VICE CHAIRMAN 01689 833358 The Memorial Hall, Methodist Church, Sevenoaks Road, Orpington First Friday in the month at 1.45pm

Romney Marsh

Phyllis Duignan CHAIR 020 8265 0810 phyllis.duignan@gmail.com United Reformed Church,Sherard Hall, Court Road, Eltham Fourth Thursday of each month at from 10am to 12 noom, with additional events 06/03/14 Outing to Churchill Theatre, Bromley to see West Side Story 13/03/14 Coach outing to Shepherd Neame Brewery and lunch 27/03/14 Coffee morning followed by AGM and bingo 10/04/14 Coach outing to Canterbury Cathedral 24/04/14 Coffee morning followed by a talk by Isobel Coaker on teaching infants in wales 08/05/14 Coach outing to Camden Lock for cruise and lunch 22/05/14 Coffee morning followed by a talk by John Beckham on common birds in parks and gardens

Mrs Win Owen CHAIR 01797 362598 winefride@aol.com The Assembly Rooms, Church Approach, New Romney Second Wednesday of each month at 10am 12/03/14 Emma and Nelson: talk by Sheila Boyd 09/04/14 Flying for fun: talk by Tony Harris 14/05/14 Outing (details to follow)

London: Fulham SW5, SW6 and SW10

Mrs June Brown SECRETARY 020 8891 4680 junebrownuk@hotmail.com Various venues, dates and times 05/03/14 Katie Cox Lunch at All Hallows Church Hall, Erncroft Way, Twickenham

Mrs Grace Phillipson CHAIRMAN Waterford House, Waterford Road, Fulham

Sanderstead and Selsdon Ralph Perryman LOCAL CONTACT 020 8657 3487 ralph.perryman172@btinernet.com The Selsdon Centre for the Retired (Sainsbury’s Supermarket), 132 Addington Road, South Croydon Second Thursday of each month at 3.00pm 13/03/14 Afternoon tea 10/04/14 Afternoon tea 08/05/14 Afternoon tea

South East Middlesex

10/04/14 Outing to Lewes 20/05/14 Outing to Isle of Wight

Staines Dorothy Dib SECRETARY 01784 441990 Various restaurants for lunch. New members always welcome. Third Tuesday of each month

Sutton Pam Davis SOCIAL SECRETARY 020 8641 2114 Friends Meeting House, 10 Cedar Road, Sutton Last Monday of the month from 2pm to3.45pm with additional events 03/03/14 AGM and social afternoon (revised date) 17/03/14 Informal lunch at the Nonsuch Inn, North Cheam 31/03/14 Monthly meeting: Moving house is fun! Christopher Bishop talks about his experiences with Pickfords 14/04/14 Informal lunch (tbc) 28/04/14 Monthly meeting: Jean Vasey talks about Quakers and chocolate makers 19/05/14 Monthly meeting: speaker to be announced

Whitstable and Herne Bay (including Canterbury) Linda Swift LOCAL CONTACT 01227 276583 lindaswift2@sky.com Swalecliffe and Chestfield Community Centre, St. Johns Road, Whitstable Fourth Thursday of the month at 2pm 27/03/14 Beetle Drive and AGM 24/04/14 TBA 22/05/14 TBA

Worcester Park Peter Tharby CHAIRMAN 020 8337 7423 petertharby@blueyonder.co.uk Old Malden Scout Hall, 411 Malden Road, Worcester Park First Monday each month from 2pm to 4pm (If this is a Bank Holiday, then we meet on the second Monday) 03/03/14 My Mongolian Adventure: talk by John Pullan followed by the AGM 07/04/14 You’re my local councillor, can you help me please?: talk by George Crawford 12/05/14 The classic Post Office 1900 to1969: talk by Paul Wood

NO GROUP IN YOUR AREA? Then we’d like to help you establish one. If you’d be interested in working with us to open up a new group for your area then contact David or Belinda at Fellowship Office on 020 8691 7411. www.csrf.org.uk SPRING 2014

61


the last word

My

favourite things…

Former children’s laureate Michael Rosen is one of the UK’s best-loved writers for children, from ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’ to ‘Michael Rosen’s Sad Book’. He’s also professor of children’s literature at Goldsmiths, University of London and has a new book out for adults: ‘Alphabetical: how every letter tells a story’ (John Murray).

1

PAINTING

Breughel’s ‘Children’s Games’ because it reminds me of the fun that children can have when they’re not forced to do things they don’t want to do.

2 3

NOVEL

 Cockroach, the great survivor.

Catch-22: the most humane and moving account of war and the corruption of war.

  Piece of music

 Anything from Miles Davis ‘Kind of Blue’ because it evokes for me the vigour and diversity of city life.

CITY

COLOUR

5

QUOTATION

The law locks up the man or woman/ Who steals the goose from off the common/ And leaves the greater villain loose/ Who steals the common from the goose (Anonymous)

Paris is special for many reasons: because of what it was in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, because of my visits there as a late teenager and in my early twenties, and because of the visits I made to the city with my wife and children.

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SPRING 2014 www.csrf.org.uk

7 6 8

ANIMAL

I like all colours.

Historical Figure

William Cuffay, who was born into slavery in St Kitts, became a free man, joined the Chartists and fought for freedom, was arrested and transported to Australia, worked his sentence, and on his release fought for free speech in Australia.

9

FLOWER

 I rather like dandelions. I like their vigour and persistence and jolliness.


Avanti Magazine - Spring 2014  

The membership magazine for The Civil Service Retirement Fellowship, a charity that supports all retired civil servants, their partners and...

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