REG TAYLOR'S   100th BIRTHDAY

*please click on the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of the event

Reg Taylor  celebrated his 100th Birthday on 28th November 2014


He was a member of the Walkers Group for many years and still walks about 2 miles daily, part of his birthday celebrations was to sign copies at his book “A Century of Wars and Peace” at Caldicot library.    

His Son, Daughter, Sister and other family members were present as well as neighbours & friends including a small group of U3A members who used to walk with Reg. (A report with pictures should appear in the Wye valley review shortly)
REG we wish you many more happy birthdays .

Jenny

I have searched our U3A archives and found some photos of Reg and Esme, they were taken when Reg was 90 years of age, maybe you can also spot yourself 10 years ago at the Castle seat presentation photo.

Ron

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Volunteer of the Year Award.

During September Pam Caines, Chairwoman of Caldicot U3A, received an invitation to attend a function titled 'Making a Difference' at Glen-yr-afon Hotel at Usk, and received an award as Volunteer of the Year. The event was organised by Monmouthshire Housing Association.

The photo shows our Chairwoman with her Certificate at our monthly meeting where we all had the opportunity to congratulate Pam.

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

Dave Edwards

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In September 2014 Caldicot Methodist Church held a successful Flower Festival & U3A Art Exhibition it was called

“A Rainbow of Promises”

*please click on the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of the event

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Photo Worker of the Year Awards 2014

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

On Friday 25th July had our computer end of year social.

During that, John Mills presented the certificates to the first three people in the Worker of the Year Photography Competition.

The results were as follows:-

First: Ann Taylor-Heard.
Second: Nita Fenton.
Third: Jenny Watson.

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BIG INFORMATION DAY July 2014

*please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our Group at the event

 

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The U3A were invited with other community groups to attend a “ BIG INFORMATION DAY “ in the Choir Hall by Jessica Morden MP and John Griffiths AM.  Both are featured on our stand with local councillor Jim Higginson and our members.

The stand was organised by our Chairman Pam Caines with the help from our members. I might be biased but I thought our stand was one of the best displays I have seen over many years, well done.

 
The photo attached shows from the left
Chairman Pam Caines, I.P.C. Jim Hill and Secretary Jackie Hicks.

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Caldicot U3A Open day held in the choir hall on October 2013.


 *please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our Group Displays Open Day

Caldicot U3A Open day held in the choir hall on October 2013.

Photographs by Ron Lapthorn

After a welcome to everyone by our Chairman Pam Coines and a tour of the different groups displays, refreshments were served which included tea/coffee, scones, jam and cream, everyone including visitors and new members had a most enjoyable afternoon. Thanks to everyone who brought in the scones and the volunteers who served and did the washing up.

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Macmillan Coffee Morning

"The Computer Group decided to donate its takings for coffee this week to the Macmillan Coffee Morning. By the generosity of members, both those who brought cakes to sell and those who dug deep into their pockets, we have sent a cheque for £133.10 to the charity."

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Convenors Meeting 2013

Convenors Meeting 2013

The photo is our Chairman Pam Caines (centre front row) and some of our U3A Convenors.
It was taken at the twice a year meeting of Convenors which is held in Caldicot Council Offices.

Photograph taken by David Buckley

Norma says farewell

*Please click the the images below to access larger photographs

Today at our monthly meeting in the choir hall, Caldicot & District U3A members said farewell to Norma Shreeve our Gardening Convenor since 1998.

photo: Pam Simpson, P.C.Glenice Dallow, Hazel Kingdom, Norma Shreeve

In the absence of our Chairman Pam Caines who was on other U3A duties, Pam Simpson our Treasurer did the honours by wishing Norma happiness in her new home back where her family live and roots are, Pam went on to thank Norma for all the work and lovely places and gardens she has taken us over the years.

Photo: A group of ladies say their farewells to Norma

On behalf of our U3A Past Chairman Glenice Dallow presented Norma a Bouquet and Hazel Kingdom presented Norma a framed picture of Caldicot Castle painted by Margaret North, one of our artists.

photo: Watercolour painting of Caldicot Castle by Margaret North

We hope you will be here to see the completed DVD of all our Gardening trips this year, if not we will send you a copy.

You will be missed Norma but the good news is Rosa Morgan has said she will take over the Gardening group.

Editor

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The Last Train from Prague

*please click the image below to access a small photo slideshow

Renate Collins who now lives near Caldicot gave a true and touching story about her early life which was a very dramatic time for lots of young Jewish children who were being evacuated around the British Isles. Renate was in Europe when times were difficult for Jewish people. The Nazis were stirring up trouble and a war in Europe was beginning to look inevitable so Britain became the only Country in the World to say they would accept 10.000 Jewish children.

Last Train

A five year old girl Renate had a temperature of 104 and chickenpox, her mother did not want her to go but a very close friend and nursing sister said it was her only chance and so Renate was the youngest and last child to be put on the last train out of Prague.

The next train with children was due to leave in September 1939, the day that war broke out, all those children were never heard of again.

Renate arrived at Liverpool street station and was met by a very tall man dressed all in black and wearing a dog collar, he was a clergyman come to collect her and take her back to Wales. The next morning when she awoke the first face she saw was this little girl looking down at her, it was Pat Warren the daughter of the house, they became close friends and still are friends 74 years on.

Renate has researched her family, all 64 perished in the Holocaust, she says to those that say we should forget the past and others who say it never happened, “bring me news of where my 64 relatives have been all this time!”

Thank you Renate for sharing your story with us.

Ron Lapthorn

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Caldicot & District U3A AGM April 2013

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

Our 2012 - 2013 U3A Committee at the AGM  in the choir hall

*Please click below to access AGM April 2013 Report

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING April 2013

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Caldicot U3A Member has New Year Honour

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

Wendy White B E M

Wendy White, a member of Caldicot U3A Walking Group has been included in the Queen’s New Year Honours list and been awarded the B E M. She is President of Welsh Netball and the honour is in recognition of her services to Netball in Wales.

The honours system recognises people who have made great achievements in public life and people who have committed themselves to serving Britain and have been outstanding at what they do.

The award will be made in Wales later this year.

Well done Wendy.

Wendy lived in Caldicot from the age of 15 when the family moved there. Her father was a railway man. After leaving college she spent some time in Australia working with Australian netball before returning back to Wales.

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U3A Day at the Senedd 22nd January 2013

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of the U3A at the Senedd

Photographer Ron Lapthorn

The planning group led by Anthony Hughes, the U3A Trustee for Wales organised the event for Welsh U3As and their members. Caldicot supplied representatives and the photographer, his photographs of some of the day’s activities and attending members from various U3As are featured in the attached slideshow.

The Purpose of the day.

Demonstrate to AMs, senior officers of local authorities and senior managers in colleges the range and quality of activities taking place in U3As throughout Wales;

Help them to understand the aims and principles of U3As and the many important benefits U3As bring to older people;

Seek their encouragement, support and practical help in setting up new U3As in Wales and in sustaining existing U3As.

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Caldicot Senior School Musicians

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of the musicians

Caldicot senior school musicians kindly visited our January monthly meeting in the choir hall, some for the very first time playing in front a large audience. The young musicians led by their music teacher Sara Humber were loudly applauded at the end of each piece. At the very end our members were full of praise for our School and its students. 

Jim Hill our chairman thanked Sara and the music students for taking time out to visit us every year, this being the fourth and he wished them on behalf of our members, best wishes for the future.

Editorial and photo's by Ron Lapthorn

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Christmas Pantomime "Cinderella" December 2012

*please click the images below to access a photo slideshows of the production

Once upon a time there lived an unhappy young girl. Her mother was dead and her father Baron Hardup who had lost all his money and married a rich widow Devilla to save his property. The widow had two daughters Hernia & Nausea the ugly sisters. Cinderella’s stepmother didn't like her one little bit. All her kind thoughts and loving touches were for her own daughters. Nothing was too good for them - dresses, shoes, delicious food, soft beds, and every home comfort.

But for the poor unhappy Cinderella, there was nothing at all. No dresses, only her ugly stepsisters’ hand-me-downs. No lovely food, nothing but scraps. No rest and no comfort. She had to work hard all day. Only when evening came was she allowed to sit for a while by the fire, near the cinders. That’s why everybody called her Cinderella.

Cinderella used to spend long hours talking to her friend Buttons. Buttons said, Cheer up! You have something neither of your stepsisters have and that is beauty. It was quite true, Cinderella, even dressed in old rags, was a lovely girl. While her ugly stepsisters, no matter how splendid and elegant their clothes, were still clumsy, lumpy and ugly and always would be.

Prince Charming met Cinderella in the countryside where out horse riding and gave Cinderella an invitation to the ball. The ball was to be held at the palace and the ugly stepsisters had been given tickets and were getting ready to go. Cinderella’s stepmother found out she had an invitation to the ball and destroyed Cinderella’s ticket. “You're staying at home to wash the dishes, scrub the floors and turn down the beds for your stepsisters.”

Suddenly something amazing happened as Cinderella was sitting all alone, there was a burst of light and a fairy appeared.  “Don't be alarmed, Cinderella”, said the fairy.  “I know you would love to go to the ball, and so you shall!” “How can I, dressed in rags?” Cinderella replied.  “The servants will turn me away!”

The fairy smiled, with a flick of her magic wand Cinderella’s beautiful dress appeared. “Now for your horse & coach” said the fairy; a flick of her magic wand and a pumpkin appeared! Then a Rat appeared in a box!  With a flick of the magic wand the pumpkin turned into a sparkling coach and the rat became a white horse. Cinderella could hardly believe her eyes.

Cinderella had a wonderful time at the ball until she heard the first stroke of midnight! She remembered what the fairy had said, and without a word of goodbye she slipped from the Prince’s arms and ran down the steps. As she ran she lost one of her slippers, but not for a moment did she dream of stopping to pick it up! If the last stroke of midnight were to sound... oh... what a disaster that would be! Out she fled and vanished into the night.

The Prince, who was now madly in love with her, picked up the slipper and said to Dandini, “Go and search everywhere for the girl whose foot this slipper fits. I will never be content until I find her!”
So Dandini tried the slipper on the foot of every girl in the land until only Cinderella was left.

“That awful untidy girl simply cannot have been at the ball”, snapped the stepmother. “Tell the Prince he ought to marry one of my two daughters! Can't you see how ugly Cinderella is?” But, to everyone’s amazement, the shoe fitted perfectly.

Suddenly the fairy appeared and waved her magic wand. In a flash, Cinderella appeared in a splendid dress, shining with youth and beauty. Her stepmother and stepsisters gaped at her in amazement. Cinderella married the Prince and lived happily ever.

Christmas Pantomime photos taken by Ron Lapthone

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South Wales and Severnside Regional Network of U3A s

On Thursday 1st November your committee played host to 16 U3A groups from across Wales.  Meeting started at 10-30 am, opened by Brian Metcalfe our own Network Secretary.

*please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our South Wales and Severnside Regional Network of U3A s conference

South Wales and Severnside Regional Network of U3A s conference

Photo's by Ron Lapthorn

Local historian Peter Strong gave us a talk on how Monmouthshire came to be part of Wales.   This was followed by a report on the progress of the South Wales Network by Doug Jones the SWSS Network Secretary.

We had a very good buffet lunch, supplied local which received very good comments from our guest.  Our Drama group then put on a very good show after which, Lin Jonas, who is the Third Age Trust Company Secretary said how do you follow that, she was giving the next talk. She gave a very interesting and  informative talk on the benefits of being a member of the U3A followed by questions.  Anthony Hughes, Wales Trustee was the last to speak.

A Presentation was made to Beth Butler to mark her contribution & achievement to the U3A. Beth a member of Chepstow was a member of the National Executive Committee for 3 years and one of 2 Vice Chairman for 3 years.  The Presentation of flowers and gift was made by Roger Slade from   Caldicot & District who was Network Secretary for 7 years.
The meeting I am told went down well, with a number of new U3A groups attending a Network Meeting for the first time.

I would like to say thank you to all the committee who helped set up this meeting also our members for doing the teas and coffee.

Jim Hill
Chairman.

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Group Displays October 2012 Choir Hall Caldicot

Jim Hill our Chairman opened the afternoon event by welcoming everyone including those visitors that had come with a view to joining after seeing what we do. I must say that Tony who is also in the photo was representing the Drama group and had no intention of using the trumpet he was holding, or did he?

*please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our Group Displays Open Day

Photo slideshow of our Group Displays Open Day

Photo's by David Buckley and Ron Lapthorn

Our U3A groups were well represented and should be congratulated on their displays. A big thank you to all of you who supplied the scones and those members who looked after us with free tea, coffee, jam/cream scones also the back room helpers in the kitchen. It all came together to make it yet another successful afternoon.

The last picture in the slideshow gives an indication what was going on outside the choir hall while we were inside.

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An award for Ron Lapthorn

*please click the images below to access a larger photograph

Photo by David Buckley

Honorary Membership Awarded to Ron Lapthorn 12th July 2012

photo: Presentation to Ron by Chaiman Jim Hill at the Drama group Performance in July 2012

Thank you Ron for the incredible work he has done over many years for the Caldicot & District U3A.


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Caldicot and District U3A Celebrate their 17th Anniversary in May 2012

Roy Davies and his Jazz Band (Round the Horn) visited us in the Choir Hall and played a lively selection of jazz for the celebration of our 17th Anniversary. Our audience were glued with intent to the sound of jazz (as seen in the photographs) before tucking into the buffet after our Chairman Jim Hill had thanked Roy and his musicians for giving us such a memorable and enjoyable afternoons entertainment. 

*please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our 17th Anniversary

Caldicot and District U3A Celebrate their 17th Anniversary in May 2012

Photographs were taken by David and Brenda Buckley.

Our Chairman went on thank all those that participated in the supplying, preparation and clearing up after the afternoons festivities.

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CALDICOT AND DISTRICT U3A

Annual General Meeting 19th April 2012.


Choir Hall, Caldicot 2-15 pm Thursday 19th April 2012

1: Apologies for Absence

Received from G. Dallow, B. Buckley H. Wormald.

2: Minutes of the previous AGM 21st April 2011

Minutes of the 21st April 2011 were distributed to all those present.

3: Approval of Minutes

Approval of the minutes was proposed by Pat Dawe and seconded by Reg Kelly.

4: Chairsman's Report

Good afternoon everyone thank you for taking the time to attend the A.G.M. This is my first A.G.M. report, as a matter of interest I am the 8th Chairman of Caldicot U3A.
We now have 17 active groups of various sizes.( Walkers have 3 groups) Basic Spanish have 3 members, Table Tennis have 17 members with our biggest group having 45 members.

We did try to restart the French group but there was no interest shown.
This year seems to have more holidays and day trips organised which has been helped with the lottery grant for some of the fuel cost.

Thanks to the hard work done by Norma Shreeve and Mike Tew in sorting the paper work. We will be applying for more grants for the Drama group and Computers in August. (That’s when Norma will have spent up all her grant money.)

All the groups and activities would not have happened without the hard work of our 22 convenors, group Treasurer, helpers and our Special events group. Then we have our U3A web site run by Ron Lapthorn and Paul Tidmarsh, which keeps every one up to date with events and information.

We have 3 members of our committee standing down due to illness and other commitments. I would like to say a big thank you to Glenice Dallow, (committee member since 2002 & past Chairman).

I trust you will join me in wishing Glenice a speedy recovery to full health. I would like to say thank you to Sue Shepherd and Elizabeth Gillum who have both work hard on the committee and played their part.

Thank you to the other members of the committee who have agreed to stay on for another year. Pam Simpson, Treasurer, who has done a lot of hard work on our budget and keeping on top of our cash flow. Brenda Buckley, our Publicity Officer, who keeps Caldicot in the news.

Brian Metcalfe, now taking over as the Network Contact. Rodger Slade was taking over as Vice Chairman, but he was taken to hospital and is not able to take up Vice Chairman or any other committee position at present time. 

Pam Caines, has agreed to be Vice Chairman and will also be part of the network subcommittee. We wish Rodger a speedy recovery. Helen Wormald, committee member, who help out as acting secretary. Which means we still have 3 positions to fill? Could 3 of you step up please?

Thank you also to our newsletter Editor Geoff Barlex. Speakers Secretary Iris Price, and our U3A Representative on outside committees, Peter Shreeve. Membership Secretary Alma Gaskell, who has done a lot of extra work with our new direct mail system. 

June Brown our Link Secretary. Also thank you to the ladies and gentleman who do teas and biscuits at the end of every monthly meeting. Plus our ladies at the door booking you all in.  Plus thanks to Jim and Nita Fenton, Jim deals with all our equipment needs for meetings and Nita our updates on forms.

Finally I would like to pay my respect to Terry Williams who passed away at the beginning of this year. Terry was a member of the committee from 2001 and 2002, Speakers Secretary 2003 up to 2010 plus a convenor of French and arranged a number of trips. Terry was a true U3A member in sharing his knowledge and skills with others.

Jim Hill (Chairman)

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"Keeeeeeeep Dancing"

*please click the photograph below to access a photo slideshow of our Christmas Dinner

While winds up to 100 miles an hour blew round parts of the country Caldicot U3A spent the afternoon in the warm comfortable Dewstow Golf Club where their Christmas Lunch was being held.

After a wonderful lunch many took to the dance floor and skipped the light fantastic round the dance floor to our musician Ian Towers (see photographs), I think our members and guests must have been watching the BBC TV Strictly Come Dancing.

At 4.00pm we all left in our carriages for home. Thank you to all the U3A organisers of the lunch, staff at Dewstow and our members for making it such an enjoyable afternoon to end another successful year. 

Photographs Ron and Rodney Imrie

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"Library Wales Caldicot"

At a recent meeting of our U3A art group we were invited by our Caldicot Librarian to join other local artists and art students from our local school to a demonstration by Chris Fisher an illustrator of Children's books. 

In the youtube video there are brief flashes of some of our members including my right hand drawing a cartoon but don't blink otherwise you will miss us!
We have been invited again this coming Friday.

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*please click the You Tube logo above to view a video of the event

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Caldicot & District U3A Open Day in the Choir Hall October 2011

*please click the image belox to access a photo slideshow of our 2011 Open Day.

Photo's taken by Ron Lapthorn

This year the choir hall was set out more like Earls Court or an Olympia event and proved most successful with many people coming for their first visit, with so much to view and chat about the afternoon just vanished but not before everyone had their scones and tea. Well done committee, convenors, members and the members who gave their time for us in the kitchen. We hope the photo's say it all.

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THE BIG BIKE RIDE.

Jim, Chairman and Bill Bewg, Walkers plus our friend Sue.

St. David’s to Chepstow.

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

For the last three months Sue, Jim and I have been training for up to 60 miles a day , three times a week to give ourselves an even chance of not only finishing the ride, but enjoying it as much as possible.

We left Magor on Wednesday the 7th with a fully loaded car, four people, all the baggage and three adult Bikes on a rack at the back. I must admit I was quite relieved to arrive at our over night stop near St David’s without mishap.

Thursday the 8th dawned cloudy but dry, most importantly the wind was behind us. We were waved on our way by Chris and my cousin Monica who lives in the area. We made good time to Haverford west, but from then on several long climbs slowed us down somewhat. We met Chris for a quick lunch stop at Narberth. By this time it was drizzling hard

Proceeding west via Whitland, and St. Clears we entered the last undulating section leading into Carmarthen. Five miles from the town on a muddy downhill lane Sue came off her Bike bringing Jim down as well. Fortunately apart from a grazed knee and elbow all was well, but my heart was in my mouth for two or three minutes.. We arrived at our overnight stop in good heart having covered 60 miles.

Friday the 9th. Weather about the same. We left a little earlier as we had 70 miles to do. Some early climbs gave way to the flatlands through Pembrey forest, Pendine Sands, Burry Port and the Millennium coastal Path around Llanelli. The section was scenic and thanks to the wind direction quite fast.

Just as well for we had Swansea and Port Talbot to negotiate on a Friday afternoon. Swansea was quite easy as they have an excellent coastal path around the Bay. Port Talbot was the exact opposite. Not the prettiest of places at the best of times, on a damp Friday evening not a place to be. We made progress by luck and Sue’s ability to see the Bike route signs regardless of where they had been hidden.

We then had a hard climb round Margam Park, and went of course near Bidgend which had us climbing a long hill just to do a Grand Old Duke of York job and ride all the way back down again. Eventually at 6.30pm we arrived at our Wetherspoons Pub having covered 72 miles in just under 9 hours.

Saturday 10th dawned cloudy. The forecast had been dire, but at least the wind was still in the south west.  This was our mountain crossing day and we were all a little apprehensive.  Fortunately we had ridden the route in training which cut the delays down considerably. Twice in the first 20 miles we climbed over 400 feet, the second time the length of climb forcing us all to walk.

Lunch was taken in the grounds of Caerphilly Castle, which left us with just the mainly flat run in to Chepstow.  The weather had the last laugh when with less than 5 miles to go the heavens opened and we got soaked to the skin.

Fortunately the sun came out just before the finish, we crossed the line at Chepstow Methodist Church to a warm welcome from Michael Bale and the Chepstow committee, our nearest and dearest and friends. The good people of Chepstow provided us with an excellent tea. We had covered a further 62 miles making a total of 192.

Now there only remains the large job of getting the sponsor money in. If all is collected then we should exceed £2000.

I would like to thank my two companions for their company and support, our respective wives and husbands for their help and tolerance, and the many friends who have donated to Action for Children.

Bill Bewg.

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Minister opened the Chepstow to Blackrock coastal path


Welsh Government Minister, John Griffiths AM opened
the Chepstow to Blackrock section of the Wales Coast
Path in Chepstow on Monday, 19th September 2011.
This 9.5km stretch leaves the historic town of Chepstow to meet the Severn Estuary, following the sea defence wall to Monmouthshire County Council's picnic site at Blackrock, near Portskewett.

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The official opening took place at 11.30am at Chepstow's bandstand on the banks of the Wye.

The Wales Coast Path starts near the Old Town Bridge, Chepstow and finishes 850 miles (1,370 km) away at Queensferry in the north. Completion of the entire 850 miles is scheduled for May 2012.

Over the last four years Monmouthshire County Council has been making improvements to rights of way on or near to the coast with funding from the Welsh Government's Coastal Access Improvement Programme administered by the Countryside Council for Wales.

Crucial to the sustainability of the project are the voluntary coast path wardens who regularly check the path to keep it clear of vegetation and litter, report problems and undertake minor repair work.

Two stones bearing the coast path logo at Chepstow will mark the official start point. One is of local pennant sandstone donated by Forest of Dean Stone Firms Ltd and its partner is a piece of halkyn marble donated by Cemex and Flintshire CC.

Similar stones will stand at Queensferry. In a joint project with Monmouthshire's Countryside Access Team and adventa (Monmouthshire's Rural development programme), an artist will be commissioned to enhance the area around the stones at Chepstow to create an iconic gateway to both the start of the Coast Path and its link to Offa's Dyke Path National Trail.

The local AM and various other dignitaries were opening up the coastal path from Chepstow. Brenda Buckley our PRO spoke to a few in U3A and they all agreed that we should participate as U3A. Member later walked from Chepstow to Blackrock on the new path.

Photos of our members at the opening of the Chepstow to Blackrock coastal path

*please click on the images above to access larger photographs

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Swansea U3A 25th Anniversary Celebrations

On July 20th Pam (Caines) and I were invited by Swansea U3A to their 25th Anniversary celebrations.  Swansea U3A has had close association with the university who provide meeting halls, speakers and finances.

The opening address was by Jean Goodeve the former Chairman of the Third Age Trust and member of Pembroke U3A.  She congratulated Swansea and welcomed the founder Chairman Dr Edwin Lewis.  We were told that there are over 270.0000 members and 801 U3A’s in the UK.  She  went on to explain abut the International U3A where one of the four founders of 3rd Age Trust was the 1st British Chair of the International U3A.  The largest U3A is in China with 4 million members and over 2000 U3A’s.  One of their members on a visit to Bromley office of 3rd Age Trust was surprised to hear that we were self funded and such a vibrant organisation.

Singing for pleasure group 2011

photo: Singing for pleasure group 2011

The Group Showcase, introduced by Mr Michael Edmonds, the Vice-Chairman entertained us with various sketches by their individual groups.  The Creative Writing group wrote several amusing pieces relating to the story of Swansea U3A, followed by the French, Tai chi, Italian, Welsh, MOTO (members on their own) including an excerpt from Dylan Thomas.  There was a brief interval mid-morning where we talked to Jean Goodeve who has been impressed by Caldicot U3A.

After a very good lunch, the highlight of the afternoon was when we welcomed the Guest Speaker Jamie Owen, who is  a very popular presenter and newsreader from BBC Wales and has written several books. 

Jamie Owen

photo: Jamie Owen and Glenice Dallow

He is aware of U3A because his mother is an active member of Haverfordwest U3A.  His talk - 25 years in broadcasting and the next 25 years was very entertaining and amusing with anecdotes from his working life from novice reporter sent out to various locations to find out people’s views on a variety of subjects, often proving quite embarrassing!.  He then asked for questions from the members.  We were delighted to meet him afterwards where he was signing his books for members.  This was followed by showcase members from Singing for Pleasure with songs for audience participation.

The Chairman Anthony Hughes invited Dr Edwin Lewis to close the meeting which he did with the story of the difficulties of finding somewhere to meet for their 1st meeting and he congratulated Swansea on reaching their 25th Anniversary.

Glenice Dallow

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Launch of Monmouthshire’s Voluntary Sector Compact

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

I.P. Chairman Pam Caines and P.Chairman Glenice Dallow attended the launching of Monmouthshire’s Voluntary Sector Compact on  Monday 16th May 2011,

The event provided an opportunity to meet and network with other groups and organisations working in Monmouthshire.  A photograph of our display can be seen.

Glenice and Pam said It was an ideal time to just sit and chat to people about the activities we provide.

The Big Lottery was there to let us know about their Grant Schemes and GAVO staff was also on hand although the art groups recent design and successful production of a postcard for Caldicot was sponsored by the art group themselves.

Editors note:- A link is situated on our Home page which will take you to news of our grants associated with the Big Lottery. "click here"

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Caldicot & Distrist U3A 16th Anniversary Celebrations 19th May 2011

*please click the image belox to access a photo slideshow of our Anniversary Celebrations

Photographs taken by Ron Lapthorn

At our May monthly meeting we were pleased to welcome a very special Old Tyme Music Group from South Wales The Pencoed Players to entertain us at our U3As 16th Anniversary Celebrations.

16th Anniversary Celebrations

To celebrate 16 years of Caldicot U3A we were treated to an afternoon of Old Time Music Hall supplied by the Pencoed Players. The players are a group of men and women, 35 in number and whose ages range from 55 to 85 years. Most of the members are in their 70s.

They are all amateurs and have performed over 600 times since they formed for a 'one off' performance.They support many charities and have sung all over Britain. Several U3A members took the trouble to dress in appropriate costume and after some short speeches, chairman Jim Hill announced the start of the show.

The acts were introduced by Mistress of Ceremonies, Connie. Connie is one of the oldest members at 85years (plus!). A master of alliteration, she introduced every act with a veritable dictionary of words.

Songs such as ' I do like to be beside the seaside' and 'kiss me goodnight sergeant major' were interspersed with comedy sketches and there was much audience participation.

During a short interval refreshments were served before the second half. The show was a wonderful hour and a half of good old fashioned entertainment and received rousing applause from the audience.

Sharyn Harris

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Caldicot & District A3A 2011 AGM

*please click the image belox to access a photo slideshow of our 2011 AGM

photo: Welcoming team at our AGM 2011

AGM report will be posted soon!

Annual General Meeting April 2011

The Annual General meeting of Caldicot and District U3A took place in April 2011 and was well attended. 

Pam Caines announced that she was standing down after serving four years as Chairman and introduced her successor Jim Hill, who has served as Vice Chairman for the past year.

In her closing speech Pam advised everyone that she had thoroughly enjoyed her term as Chairman but now felt it was time to hand over to “new blood” .  

Pam advised that she had been very fortunate during her term to have someone like John Sherrington as Secretary and Marion Guppy, a previous Vice Chairman.  John has retired from the Committee after serving six years as Secretary.

No-one has come forward to fill this position so at present another member of the committee, Helen Wormald, has agreed to be “Acting Secretary” for the time being. Marion Guppy, has also retired.

Pam thanked both for their valuable support.

Three new members were welcomed, they were Brian Metcalfe and Lyn Gilmore and although not new to the Committee having served as Chairman previously, Glenice Dallow.  Pam wished them well.

As no-one has come forward to take the position of Vice Chairman , Glenice has agreed to take the position of Acting Vice Chairman until such time as some-one will take over.

Pam thanked everyone (too many to name in this report) involved  in the running of the U3A for all their help and dedication and most for their full support during her term.

The Treasurer enlarged on the statement of finances which had been attached to the Newsletter and advised that once again we would not be raising membership subscriptions and these would remain at £10.00 per year.

Everyone agreed on last year’s minutes and following the above, the AGM was closed.

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CALDICOT SCHOOL BAND PERFORMANCE 20th January 2011

*please click the image belox to access a photo slideshow of the event

CALDICOT SCHOOL BAND PERFORMANCE 20th January 2011

The photos and editorial from the school visit to our monthly meeting in the Choir Hall Caldicot

Sara Axon, Director of Music

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Our October Open Day

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of our October OPen Day

photo: The Open Day cream teas are ready

In the photo slideshow above is a selection of photo's, some serious and some fun taken at our October meeting where various groups have the opportunity to display their activities, it also allows existing, prospective and new members to view what we are doing, the afternoon finished with tea and scones.

Our thanks must go to our team of volunteers who arranged all the displays and refreshments plus the cleaning up. The last photo of our slideshow shows our chairman Pam in the thick of the cleaning up.

Today we would like to welcome ten new members to our U3A.

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The Midnight Walk

Four of our walkers  Pam Simpson, Rosemary Brown, Sue Shepherd, Wendy Rudd
and two of their friends walk for charity raising £1000.

*please click the images below to access larger photographs

photo: Pam Simpson, Rosemary Brown, Sue Shepherd & Wendy Rudd walk for charity raising £1000.

The day had finally arrived for 4 of the strollers.  The day of the 10 mile Midnight walk in aid of St Anne’s Hospice.
I picked up Rosemary and Wendy and we headed to Pam’s at 8.30 for a light supper, my friend and her sister who were doing the walk as well also joined us.  We dined well and set off for Newport at 10.15 making the mistake of using the motorway and getting stuck in a traffic jam but we arrived on time and checked in.

photo: 240 walkers at stadium in Newport

There were about 240 of us in the stadium and there was a lot of hilarity when the sprinklers come on and nearly wet our starter.

We were “warmed up” for about 10 mins and then we all set off.  We were soon straggled out as we walked to the Coldra here the Hilton Hotel provided a comfort break, off again down Chepstow Road to our check in and another comfort break at the Kensington Hotel. 

It was over the George Street Bridge  where we had a welcome breeze, down passed the Royal Gwent and then we turned down Mendalgief Road.  We were all tired by now and our feet were started to ache, but not much farther.  Over the New Bridge and then back to the stadium.  The 4 of us crossed the finishing line at 2.58.

We had done the 10 miles in less than 3 hours and felt very proud of ourselves.
Back to Pam’s to finish off the sandwiches we had not eaten earlier and a well deserved cup of tea.
Between the  6 of us  we have raised £1000.00

website link: www.stanneshospice.org.uk

Many thanks to everyone who kindly sponsored them.

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Caldicot & District U3A 15th Anniversary Meeting

*please click the image below to access a larger photograph

photo: Pam Caines and Jim Hill

Pam Caines our Chairman bravely took our 15th anniversary meeting not long after breaking her leg in two places, we are pleased to say that with the help of our Vice Chairman Jim Hill the anniversary went well, especially the food which you all kindly brought with you and of course the volunteers in the kitchen who supplied endless cups of tea and coffee.

The speaker seemed very appropriate for the occasion, he was dressed as a surgeon from Nelson's day and his talk and demonstration on Jim about the type of wounds and treatment given in those times I think made Pam wish she was at the back of the hall. We are pleased to say she was last seen out of her wheelchair and hobbling about at a meeting and full of cheer.  
 
Get well soon Pam
Editor

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CALDICOT & DISTRICT U3A ART EXHIBITION

Friday 27th August 9.30am - 3.30pm
at Caldicot Methodist Church, Town Centre, Caldicot

*please click the images below to access a larger photograph

photo: Our artists photographed outside their meeting place at Portskewett.

The Artists work will be displayed on the railings and in the hall, some of the pictures will be for sale with a percentage going to the Church Teas etc. can be purchased during the morning

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AMERICAN  MUSEUM  BATH Saturday June 26th 2010

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of our visit to
the Music Festival at The American Museum June 2009

photo slideshow of the visit to Mini Music Festival at The American Museum

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There are still some seats left for this trip to the American Museum in Bath.  On this day the museum are hosting the “Concord Women’s Choir” from Massachusetts USA who are on tour in the UK   They will be performing at 2.00pm on the  afternoon of our visit .

There is also a Special Exhibition of “Classic American Quilts” in the Exhibition Hall

If you would like to join us on this outing   please tell us at June monthly  meeting  or contact us on 01291 422117

Coach cost £8.00  Museum entrance £6.00

Many thanks
Peter and Pam Dormer

Website link: www.americanmuseum.org

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Caldicot & District U3A AGM 16th April 2010

*please click the photos below to access a large images

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Now down to work! - Report to follow.


The meeting was followed by an interesting talk by Terry Gilmore-James who played recorded excerpts from early recording of sounds, singers and music broadcast by the BBC Radio as far back as 1922. Thank you Terry and we look forward to your next visit.

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On Thursday the 16th April 2010 the Annual General Meeting took place of the Caldicot and District U3A.  Following the usual discussion of last year’s minutes, which were approved and seconded by members of the audience, the business of the new Committee was discussed.

Due to the fact that no-one had come forward to take the position of Secretary, John Sherrington agreed to stay on for another year. 

This was approved by the members present. 

The position of Chairman was also not applied for and Pam Caines agreed to keep the position for another twelve month. 

This was approved with a show of hands from the members. 

Beryl Lewis has vacated the positon of Treasurer and this was taken over by Pam Simpson.  

The Vice Chairman was handed over to Jim Hill and Marion Guppy the previous Vice Chairman will remain on the committee for another twelve month.


The committee is now as follows:

Chairman
Pam Caines
Vice Chairman
Jim Hill
Secretary 
John Sherrington
Treasurer
Pam Simpson
Public Relations
Brenda Buckley
Network Secretary
Roger Slade
Committee
Marion Guppy; Rosemary Brown; Helen Wormald; Sue Shepherd

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Caldicot School U3A performance

On January 21st Caldicot School came to the choir hall Caldicot to entertain over 100 of our U3A members to a musical afternoon.  Our members were spellbound by the wonderful talent of the musicians and vocal students, so much so that we have been invited to support their production of ‘My Fair Lady’ in March, I for one cannot wait to hear the musicians and voice of Luke Hart and the angel voice of Kaleigh Hallworth who is playing the part of ‘Eliza Doolittle’


Sara

Would you please pass on our congratulations to everyone concerned with the show My Fair Lady.  My Vice Chairman and I came to the Wednesday performance and we were absolutely thrilled, each member of the cast added their own interpretation of the part and they worked well.  It was a really good show and I felt I could have been in any large theatre watching it.  WELL DONE!
 
Cheers: Pam Caines Chairman U3a

*please click the image belox to access a photo slideshow of the event

Photo: Annabel Guppy Year 12.

Thank you to Sara Axon, Director of Music and Laura Bradburn, Teacher of Music and to the Students  who came and gave us such a fantastic insight into what is going on in the world of music at the school. We hope it is not too long before we see you all again. We wish you every success for the future.

Ron Lapthorn.

Please find attached details of the performance Thursday afternoon. 
Staff members were myself Sara Axon, Director of Music and Laura Bradburn, Teacher of Music.
 
Many thanks for giving this wonderful opportunity to our pupils.

Caldicot School U3A performance

  1. Emily Batten Year 8 – ‘Quick Brown Fox’ clarinet.  Emily recently passed Grade 7 clarinet with distinction.
  2. Owen Williams Year 9 – ‘On the Sunny Side of the Street’.  Trombone.  Owen recently passed Grade 6 trombone with merit.
  3. Daniel Holland Year 12 ‘Waterfall’ piano.  This is one of Dan’s own compositions, and will contribute to his AS level in music.  He is one of this years music award winners.
  4. Annabel Guppy Year 12.  ‘Summertime’ trombone.  Annabel is studying towards Grade 8 trombone, AS level music, and is a member of the Greater Gwent Youth Modern Ensemble who recently performed at the Royal Albert Hall during the Schools’ Prom series.
  5. Luke Hart Year 11 ‘Haven’t Met You Yet’ Vocal solo.  Luke also plays guitar and drum kit.  Luke will perform the part of the Professor Higgins in our forthcoming production ‘My Fair Lady’ in March.
  6. Ryan Williams Year 11 ‘Neopolitan Song’ Trumpet.  Ryan is studying towards Grade 6 trumpet.
  7. Ryan Williams and Christian Russ Year 11 – ‘Wind Christ Mary’ electric guitars and vocal duet.  Christian will perform the part of Freddie in My Fair Lady.
  8. Luke Hart and Kayleigh Hallworth Year 11 – ‘A Little Fall of Rain’  - Vocal duet.  Kayleigh will play the leading lady ‘Eliza Doolittle’ in My Fair Lady.

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RED RIDING HOOD

Performed by

Caldicot and District U3A Drama Group

December 17th 2009

*Please click the photograph below to access photo slideshow of the
rehearsal and performance of "Red Riding Hood"

Photographs taken by Ron Lapthorn & David Buckley

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Caldicot & District U3A Webmaster Honored for 10 years service

*please click the photo below to access a large image

Photo: Pam Caines presented the Honour to Paul in front of a U3A audience

Paul Tidmarsh, our webmaster was made an Honorary member of Caldicot and District University of the Third Age.

Our Chairman, Pam Caines presented the Honour to Paul in front of a U3A audience, just before the Drama groups Christmas production of "Red Riding Hood" which was held in Caldicot choir hall.

Our Chairman said that Paul had given an unbroken 10 year voluntary service, updating the site over the years from information passed to him from various website editors. She thanked him for keeping the site up with the times and even being dedicated enough to update it while visiting his family in Sri Lanka. The Chairman said that our website was the envy of many other U3As.

Paul gave a response, thanking our U3A for the Honour and that it had come as a complete surprise. He said that it had always been a pleasure to work on our site and he was always amazed at our energy and enthusiasm for the various educational activities and trips that we undertook.


Ron Lapthorn (website editor)
Well done Paul.


Iris Price with the bouquet of flowers presented to her by Alma Gaskell on the occasion of her retirement from the position of Convenor for the History Group.

*please click the photo below to access a large image




Along with Iris are four of her helpers who have given her continued support throughout her term of office


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*please click the photo below to access a large image

photo: Pam Caines with Ron Lapthorn receiving his award

Ron Lapthorn our website editor receives 2nd Prize award and certificate in a National Digital Photo Competition from Pam Caines on Thursday 18th June at the group monthly meeting in the choir hall on behalf of Older & Bolder - niace - promoting adult learning and supported by Mature Times.

***News article below***

"Amazing"

Caldicot U3A Win Prize in a UN NIACE National Digital Photographic Comp.

the subject was "Growing Old Disgracefully"

*please click the image above to access a larger photograph

The 2nd prize awarded to our editor Ron Lapthorn for his photograph titled "Amazing"

 

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On the 21st May 2009 we celebrated our Fourteenth Anniversary and once again the members surpassed themselves with a sumptuous spread fit for royalty.

Pantodoc

Pantodoc

Photographs were taken by John Sherrington

The entertainment was exactly what was required for a relaxing afternoon of fun and laughter. Richard Westacott made sure this is what we had. Richard was a smartly dressed man standing on the stage and telling us about some of his experiences as a Panto Dame.

Whilst talking he removed his shirt and proceeded to don make-up explaining as he went what he was doing. By the time he had finished his face was completely changed into that of a Dame.

He then removed his trousers to show a wonderful pair of bloomers. He told us that he had travelled from Birmingham with them on in order to save time on stage.

He had brought several changes of costume, wigs, hats, shoes, accessories and he was unrecognizable as the man who stood on the stage at the beginning of his performance.

He also managed to get the audience to join in with the usual "he's behind you" and also singing. He called upon our Chairperson Pam Caines to help him with a quick change which was timed, and in 35 seconds he was from one dress into another, which is how it is done behind scenes in the real pantomime.

Everyone enjoyed the afternoon and joined in the fun. It certainly was different and brought out the child in very person who attended the meeting.

Mercy Ships

*Please click the images below to access larger photograph

photo: Ken and Coralie Payne presented with a cheque for £250-00 by
Pam Caines Chairman of Caldicot U3A.


The April monthly meeting in Caldicot Choir Hall was addressed by Ken and Coralie Payne who , at very short notice, presented an inspiring illustrated talk about ' Mercy Ships'.

Mercy Ships is a global, Christian based, charity which operates a modern hospital ship in the countries of West Africa.

The ship, The Africa Mercy, has six operating theatres and beds for about 78 patients, together with all the technical, scanning and treatment back up.

The ship has a staff of around 450 people, which includes the medical staff, the captain and his officers, the admin team, the IT team, cooks, galley staff , cleaners, electricians, plumbers, teachers [there is a school for staff children who might number 40] chaplains ,and land based, practical team.

All members of the crew have to pay to be working on the ship! Some crew are long term workers and some short term. Some, like surgeons and other other medical staff, might give two weeks, three weeks or even a month. People offer whatever time they can. Some return again and again.

Surgeries are offered free of charge to the African patients. Surgeries offered include dental, eyes, maxillo facial [hare lips, cleft palate, removal of tumours], orthopaedic, dealing with burns, ENT, VVF,etc.

Help is offered to any whom we can help with no discrimination over race, gender or religion.

Ken and Coralie Payne, who are both U3A members, worked as chaplains to the crew and familes. The patients have their own African, lady, chaplain.

The collection following their talk, which amounted to £170-00 was given to Mercy Ships and they were also presented with a cheque for £250-00 by Pam Caines Chairman of Caldicot U3A.

For details go to www.mercyships.org.uk

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Young Musicians

At our January 2009 monthly meeting in the Choir Hall, Caldicot we were given an excellent recital by music pupils from Caldicot School. They were accompanied by staff members, Sara Axon and Laura Bradburn.

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of the Young Musicians

The programme was compèred throughout by music teacher Sara Axon and started with Amy Gibbs and Hazel Guppy singing For Good from the show Wicked.

This was followed by individual items some of which were accompanied by Sara Axon on the piano and performed with enthusiasm and confidence by Emily Batten (clarinet) Prelude (Reade), Nathan Mowetts (guitar) Tears in Heaven, Calum Greenhalgh – Head boy (trombone) The Ash Grove, Cerys Cheeseman sang Make you feel my love accompanied by Tilly Harris on the piano, Glen Greenhalgh (horn) A Time for Peace (Graham), Ella Greenhalgh (piano) The Buccaneer (Arnold), Cara Williams (violin) Vivace (Telemann) and concluded with Owen Williams (trombone) Acrobat (Skinner).


The exceptional musical skills of these young performers were greatly appreciated by the U3A members.

Photographs and Editorial by David Evans



Our U3A Christmas Party held at the Choir Hall Caldicot
18th December 2008

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of our
Christmas Party

*please click the image to access a photo slideshow of our Christmas Party

On the 18th December we had our Christmas party which was a great success. Our Chairman Pam Caines said Caldicot and District U3A could look forward to entering 2009 as a strong and successful U3A, she then went on to wish us and our families a Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year but first enjoy our afternoons entertainment, good food and good company.

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Our U3A Turkey and Tinsel Holiday December 2008

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of our holiday

Our U3A Turkey and Tinsel Holiday December 2008

In December our Special Events team had arranged for a coach party of us to go to Bodelwyddan Castle Hotel for a four day Turkey and Tinsel.

We feasted, wined, were entertained and made merry and even found time to visit Chester, Llandudno, Conwy and Snowdonia where we were given a guided tour of the Electric mountain.

Thank you Pam and your team.

Thanks go to Mo Baker, Rita Cox, Adrian and Glenice Dallow and Dorothy Witcomb for taking the photographs


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Our U3A Christmas Dinner held at the Dewstow Golf Club on the
4th December 2008

*please click the image below to access a photo slideshow of our
Christmas Dinner

photo: Ron Lapthorn, our website editor on the dance floor.

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