Clubs and Societies, January 23, 2014


Retired Gas Employees Association, Weston branch will be holding its annual meeting and lunch on February 25 at The Windsor Castle Public House, Upper Bristol Road, Weston at 12.30pm for the meeting and 1pm for the lunch.

Members are reminded to let the secretary know if they are coming and what meal they require. Telephone the secretary on 01934 627508 as soon as possible.


Concerts are already planned for this year and details will be available very soon. In the meantime, are there any musicians out there that would like to join us? We are looking to strengthen our lower bass section so if you do play the tuba or trombone and would like to give us a try please get in touch, you will not regret it.

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For more information on the band see our website


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The meeting on January 16 started on a high note with the return of Joan McCarthy and her singers. We are always pleased to welcome them because we can be sure of an afternoon of first class entertainment.

They always look so attractive and the quality of their singing is second to none. As always, they sang many old favourites and with Joan conducting and Dennis on the piano, it was delightful. Afterwards, Lily thanked them and the tea committee served tea and cakes which was much appreciated by choir and audience alike.

After that it wasn’t easy getting back into the business part of the meeting, but one by one the important items were covered.

Earlier in the week many had attended the memorial service for our much-loved chairman, Arthur Hill, who died in December. For the sake of those who were unable to get to the church, a basket was passed around for donations, all money going to Weston Hospicecare where he was lovingly cared for in his last days.

After the auction and raffle, the meeting closed.

When we meet on February 6, Jon Glauert will tell us about his experiences as a SAGA rep, along with other stories. So don’t miss it!


Members had a very good start to 2014 at their first meeting of the year. David Usher, who was the head gardener at Hestercombe for 20 years, gave an excellent talk on ‘The history of our gardens from Roman times to the present day’

The next meeting will be our annual meeting on February 13 at St Peter’s Church Hall, Baytree Road, starting at 6.30pm. All members are welcome to come along and see how the society has been doing over the past year. The annual meeting will be followed by the usual monthly meeting at 7.30pm when Don Everett will be giving a talk ‘Colour in the garden all year round’ and will be bringing along some plants for sale. There will be a raffle and refreshments.

We are having a trip on the steam train from Bishop’s Lydeard to Minehead where we will have lunch and then visit Dunster on June 12 costing £19. To book contact Chris Nelson on 625765. The trip to the RHS Gardens at Wisley followed by a visit to Hampton Court Flower Show on July 10/11 is now fully booked but we are starting a waiting list in case of cancellations.

For further details of the society contact Cynthia Filer on 01934 514057.


At the first meeting in 2014, the chairman paid tribute to the late Christopher Manners, a popular speaker.

In her varied programme entitled ‘Reflections’, Mrs Joan Balcombe shared with us music which has been of significance in her life. Opening with Finlandia by Sibelius, she included pieces by Bach, Beethoven, Handel, Debussy and Carl Jenkins amongst many. We heard The Protecting Veil by the late Sir John Tavener, songs by and an interview with Kathleen Ferrier, and Schubert played on the harp by Catrin Finch.

The next meeting will be on Wednesday at 7.30pm when Dr Andrew Borkovski, an expert on Italian opera, will present ‘Great operatic singers of our time’. All are welcome and for further details contact the secretary on 01934 814752.


Following on from a highly successful program last year, A1 Camera Club based in St Georges, new season is now under way.

A few of the activities last year included two very successful exhibitions in the museum and the Winter Gardens, photographing over 10,000 items for cataloguing for Weston and Taunton Museums, themed and open competitions throughout the year with external judges, critique and tutorial evenings, portrait and studio work, along with summer shoots around Somerset.

This year’s programme for 2014 offers an even more varied programme of talks, practical workshops, photographic competitions and annual exhibitions

The club has members of all ages and abilities and is a welcoming, friendly and sociable environment where we all learn, improve and practice our photographic skills. Come along and join us on a Tuesday evening or give us a call on 01934 521780. More information can be found on


Our next meeting will be tomorrow (Fri) at 7.30pm in Corpus Christi Hall, Ellenborough Park South, Weston, when the speaker will be Pauline Kidner describing the ‘Secret World of Wildlife Rescue’.

On February 6 at 2.15pm we will hear from a volunteer on ‘The wonders of Westonbirt Arboretum’. We will welcome our local MP, John Penrose on February 21 at 7.30pm, who will give a talk entitled ‘Know your Parliament and its history’. Visitors as well as members are always welcome at our meetings.


The club will be holding its annual Burns Night Supper on Saturday evening, so get your name on the list for haggis, neeps and tatties!

Other upcoming social events are displayed on the club noticeboard and a programme of planned events over the next three months is featured on our website

RAFA branches and clubs are renowned for their comradeship and friendly atmosphere - why not call in to see what we are all about and, who knows, maybe join the association? You would be sure of a warm welcome as are all members and visitors of other ex-service associations, whether local, on holiday in Weston or just passing through. A representative from SSAFA Forces Help is also available for advice and guidance in the club on a Wednesday between 10am and 12noon.


The Wales, Midland and South West area director, Paul Baker, has sent the following message: “We are hugely fortunate to have the services of such a dedicated group of musicians who help to raise the profile of the association through music. The impact of the band has grown over the past 15 years and has been the catalyst for thousands of pounds of fundraising.

“Credit must go to all the musicians who have contributed a significant amount of their time but especially to Peter and Pauline Skellon who together have galvanised the band.”

In preparation for another busy and diverse year of engagements the band has a few vacancies for competent players on brass, woodwind, especially on Bb trombone. If you are interested in playing please visit our website or ring 01934 820205 for details.

Future engagements include: March 9 - RAFA AGM/reunion, Cardiff; March 21 - Formal dinner, Bristol; April 26 - Concert, Blakehay, Weston.


This is an ‘open’ meeting and anyone is welcome to attend on Monday – SpeakerNite ‘Ever wondered why? Physics simulating teens and third agers’ – by Dr Lawrence Cattermole IOP.

Take the opportunity to search on the internet ‘Ever wondered why – You Tube – IOP’, you will be astounded and fascinated about the subject matter of Dr Cattermole’s demonstrative talk. He is also happy to give some insight into some of the work that he and the Institute of Physics are doing for premiership leaders Arsenal FC regarding the physics of football and rugby.

(Nothing more needs to be. This series of ‘you-tube’ lectures speaks volumes and will whet your appetite!)

The meeting is at the Cadbury House Hotel, Congresbury/Yatton.

You can receive a waiter served hot main course and coffee available at 7.15 for 7.30pm (£10 - must be pre-booked through Rotary, Yatton).

Or just come for the speaker meeting which will start at about 8pm through to 9.15pm (a £2.50 donation to club funds is suggested for non-members).

Hope to see you there.

Please contact Tony Watkins via or 07530 736472.


Members were welcomed to our January meeting by the vice-president as our newly elected president was still away on holiday.

Best wishes to Audrey Bunn who is not well, hope she is soon feeling better.

The walks will go ahead again next month. Weather permitting we will meet at the Royal Sands on Weston seafront for 10am on February 5. The walk will be along the seafront stopping off for coffee/tea somewhere along the way.

There is a birthday afternoon tea organised to celebrate our 54th birthday at the Beachlands for 3pm on March 27, cost will be approximately £10. (There will be the usual meeting on the March 20).

Robert Harding gave a talk on his life as a farmer and a butcher and on the many opportunities it gave him. He had enjoyed a very varied life which covered every aspect of farming from training sheep dogs to carriage driving as well as looking after the live-stock on the family farm. He also worked in the many butchers shops in Bristol.

The World of Aardman Animations with Nathan Sale will be the entertainment at the February 20 meeting.

We meet on the third Thursday of every month at 7.30pm in Hewish Village Hall, new members will be very welcome.


We are a small club, meeting at 2.15-3-45pm on Thursdays in the Uphill Victoria Hall – at the moment we have 20 registered members

We would like to get more members to join us or we are in danger of the club closing, which would be a shame as the club which was founded in 1967 has brought friendship and company to a lot of people.

Members can look forward to a cup of tea and a chat.

We will be meeting for the first time this year today with a quiz and Bingo.

We need new members - please come and join us.

We have entertainment every week which includes speakers, film shows, tea parties, bring and buy, quizzes and Bingo.

We also have mini bus trips once a month in the spring and summer and arrange an annual holiday.

For further details ring Pat on 01934 429678.


Our January meeting was our AGM which was well attended.

Our speaker was Peter Tinney who gave us such an interesting and amusing talk entitled ‘Those were the days’ about his very happy life living in the country, from his birth to the marriage of his daughter.

Our next meeting is on February 4 at Weston Social Club.


Our juniors are working hard ahead of their next concert which will be held at the Boulevard United Reformed Church in Weston on February 9. Join us at 5pm for an enjoyable evening of music performed by our talented young musicians. To find out more about the Weston Youth Orchestra and to view our concert diary please visit our website


An EGM was held to discuss and make amendments to the constitution. Following this at the AGM 32 members heard reports from the chairman, secretary and treasurer on a very busy and successful year. This included the celebrations of the society’s 90 year existence, the 100 years of the RSGB as well as the various special event stations organised throughout the area.

Expressions of gratitude were also extended to the social club for providing the society with such an ideal venue. All the officers were re-elected unopposed and seven committee members were co-opted.

The club holds its main meeting on the third Monday of the month but meets every Monday for a construction and natter night at the social club. The club can be contacted at


With no engagements until March you would be forgiven in thinking that this was a quite time for members of Weston Brass, but you would be wrong. It is this time of year that the band starts preliminary work on its concert programmes. Trawling through the bands’ extensive library, trying out different pieces and looking for music that’s a bit different, exciting, but most of all entertaining is crucial. On top of all that, the band is seriously rehearsing the set test piece for the area finals in March. It sounds onerous, but its not, it’s great fun, and every Tuesday and Thursday night, will find the men, women, boys and girls of Weston Brass doing what they love to do, playing music with good friends.

The band needs to look to the future and is very keen to recruit enthusiastic learners of any age, who think that they might enjoy playing with the band. Conductor of the training band is Steve Howard, who would welcome new players to his ensemble and an instrument and teaching would be supplied at no cost.

To contact the band for any reason, our comprehensive website is full of facts and information, and our band secretary Gill Rogers is on 01934 824461.


The next meeting will be today (Thurs) at 2.30pm at the museum in Burlington Street. The speaker will be Alan Clegg who will be showing us his antique bottle collection. Visitors are welcome to attend.

Members have also been invited to a private preview of the Face to Face Exhibition tomorrow (Fri) at 7pm. This is an exhibition of North Somerset People in Photographs and will be on display to the public in the downstairs gallery at the museum for the next few weeks.

Our February meeting will be on 26th, for a musical presentation entitled ‘Wind in the Willows’ at 2.30pm. This will be by duo Tim Lewis and Sheila Furneaux who play and sing and tell us about the music.

However we will be holding an EGM before the show at 2pm in order to adopt our new charity constitution and to elect the six trustees who are standing for election to the Board of Friends Trustees. By becoming a charity we will be able to offer much more assistance to the museum refurbishment in the form of fundraising.

Our meeting on March 26 at 7pm will be our regular AGM, followed by a talk and museum update by John Crockford-Hawley.

The Friends have been selling used books and bric-a-brac in the museum courtyard to raise funds and will be pleased to receive donations of items for sale. All our fundraising goes towards buying items for the museum or for the museum refurbishment fund.

The Friends exist to support the museum in many different ways, and welcome new members and visitors at our meetings. Membership forms can be obtained at the museum shop.


The club now accepts credit/debit card payments for a minimum transaction of £5 for bar or restaurant purchases.

You can also use your card to load your loyalty scheme with credit, so no need to carry cash with you. Free WiFi has arrived at last. The log-in details are available in the club.

A computer will be provided for members to be able to surf the web free of charge. If you require the computer for a long period of time, we respectfully ask you to book the time to avoid upsetting other members.

Homemade cakes are now available all day from the bar priced at just £1 per slice. Date for your diary: February 8, Alan Hill is holding one of his infamous charity skittle nights. Tickets are £6.50 and this includes a hot meal. All proceeds go to this year’s charity, Weston Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Come along, it really is a great night out. For further details contact the secretary on 01934 621231.


We are a self-help group for anyone with a lung complaint.

We meet on the third Wednesday of each month at the Weston Cricket Club Windwhistle Lane at 2pm.

Our next meeting is on February 19 when our speaker will be pharmacist Margaret Hook, followed by a light exercise session and refreshments.

Anyone with an interest will be welcome.

For more information contact Ann on 01934 251380 or Nick on 01275 873322.


This year’s demonstration nights are as follows: February 17, Rosemary Bulled, Woolley Thinking; March 17, David Martin, Visions of Cornwall; April 14, Sue Scott, Wooden Wonders; June 16, Toni Smith, Fleurtations; September 15, Nicky Heal, Creative Creations; October 20, Shirley Preston, As I Like It.

All the above are area demonstrators and visitors are welcome to join us on our club night, in St Andrew’s Church Hall, Burnham on Sea, commencing at 7.30pm. The visitor charge is £5.

July 21, Katherine Lee - national demonstrator - to be held in St Andrew’s Church Hall, 7.30pm. Open meeting - Price to be advised. November 24, Nigel Whyles - national demonstrator - to be held in The Princess, Princess Street, Burnham.

Open meeting - £10 entry.

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