The April meeting was very well attended and the members were blessed with the view of a spectacular sunset from our lovely Village Hall.
After the business our speaker Pam Martin, of “Somerset in Stitch”, gave an illustrated and practical talk with many examples, giving members the opportunity to try for themselves. She describes herself as a Stitchmaker, not exclusively sewing, or embroidery, but all sorts of work with yarns, wools, silks etc. Her passion however is free machine embroidery, which is apparently possible on any sewing machine by using a darning foot and covering or dropping the feed dogs. Severasl members took the opportunity to use the sewing machine ewhich Pam had brought with her. Using water soluble material and brightly coloured machine threads they added stitches to a frame of soluble fabric. Once sufficiently stitched the item is washed and the soluble fabric disappears leaving a gossamer fine circular structure which can be dried over a form to give it a bowl-like shape.
Pam also showed us her collection of postcard sized machine stitched local views, and large photographs which she has copied in stitching, the quality of which was impressive and could easily be mistaken for photographs. Members were enthusiastic and enjoyed this lively talk. Claire Axten thanked Pam for her talk and said that she might have encouraged members to try a new sewing skill.
The competition was for “a stitched item” and this was won by. The Flower of the Month was won by. and attracted many vases of lovely blooms.
Trish Cox has a Craft Club which meets in the hall on the first and second Tuesday of each month at 9.30 to 12.30. The cost is £2 per meeting but is not exclusively for WI members. Why not drop in to the village hall and have a cuppa with the group, bringing your latest craft item or a half forgotten unfinished project. Trish’s Coffee Morning on the 13th is raising money for St Margaret’s.
Several members will be visiting The Houses of Parliament on July 3rd which is sure to be a most interesting day. Also the Executive Producer of “The Night Manager” TV Series, Simon Cornwell, is speaking at the Oake Manor Lodge Golf Club, with clips and out-takes from the show on June 23rd, with a Carvery and Dessert being served as well. Angie Castle will be attending.
We will be “Walking The World” in May, the date to be announced at the next meeting. Also Bucklers Mead WI will be visiting in July.
This village WI has a very friendly group of women who are always happy to welcome visitors and new members on the second Wednesday of each month at 7.30pm in the Village Hall. We enjoy visits to theatre, gardens, factories exhibitions to name but a few, and we also have a “Ladies Who Lunch” group who meet monthly usually at a local hostelry. You are very welcome to join us at our next meeting on Wednesday May 10th when the speaker will be Michael Malaghan whose talk is entitled “It Shouldn’t Happen To A Writer”. The competition will be a Comical Greeting Card.
The Flower of the Month competition was won by Janet Davies, and the Embroidered Item was won by Claire Axten with a beautiful embroidered picture. Susie Robertson was second and Trish Cox third.
Compton Dundon WI
March Meeting of the W.I. at The Meadway Hall in Compton Dundon on Wednesday 8th, 2017.
Trish Cox, the President, welcomed everyone to the monthly meeting and once the visitors were welcomed and business was completed, she handed over to the speaker, Judith Stewart, who spoke about the “Tapping Therapy”. She was quick to reassure us that we would not be required to tap dance, it was not that sort of tapping! Judith explained that this therapy was used in ancient times and may have been known to the Aztecs or early Chinese Dynasties. It found favour again in the 1960/70s when Dr Roger Callaghan had a patient called Mary, who had a disabling water phobia so serious, that she had to hide away if it rained. Slow progress was being made with conventional phobia treatments, but having knowledge of acupuncture he almost intuitively suggested trying tapping below her eye. Immediately began an incredible improvement and healing and this led Dr Callaghan to develop and promote this type of therapy. It is acknowledged that many physical problems can be caused or triggered by emotional situations which may arise from fears, guilt, cravings, addiction, nervousness, trauma, anger, pain, phobia and insomnia etc. Judith said these can be treated by identifying the negative aspect of the problem and tapping the meridians, or acupuncture pressure points, in order to bring relief. It can also help Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, jet-lag and encourage motivation to prevent procrastination. Judith worked in the Health Service and continues to volunteer at a Hospice, so is well acquainted with general medicine, but she finds that Tapping Therapy can work alongside it. A short breathing and tapping exercise was tried by all and various degrees of effect were experienced after just a short time. Since the meeting, by all accounts from those who tend to suffer from insomnia, their conditions are generally improving.
For those who might like to read more, information can be found at www.emofree.com there is also a heading “Gold Standard EFT” tutorial. Mary Hayward gave the vote of thanks to Judith.
Ladies Who Lunch will be meeting at The Unicorn in Somerton on Wednesday, March 22nd at 12.30. Please let Angie Castle know as soon as possible if you would like to attend as the Wednesday Carvery is very popular. Several members will be attending the Polden Group Spring Meeting at Middlezoy on Monday, March 20th at 7.30pm. Members expressed interest in both the Walking Treasure Hunt at Ilminster on May 5th, and Somerton Historic Walk on May 7th. Both these events are being organised by the Somerset Federation. The visit to the Bridgwater Police Custody Unit has been arranged for May 3rd and more information will be available next month.
Our speaker judged the two competitions and Trish Cox won Flower Of The Month with her blue “Star of Bethlehem” (Chinodoxia), while Mary Hayward won the Pillbox competition with a green enamelled box in which her mother used to store earrings!
Next month’s speaker will be Pam Martin on “Somerset in Stitch”, so the competition will be an embroidered item.
With Janet in hospital having undergone a hip replacement Angie assisted Trish with the meeting. Janet has returned home and is recovering well. The correspondence included a thankyou from Tina for flowers and from YMCA Mendip for the Christmas shoe boxes. We welcomed a visitor, Libby.
A report from the Polden Hills Group stated that the Christmas Concert had been excellent with the profit going to Charlton House Hospice for children. Weston Zoyland were winners of the league skittles competition. There are now only four teams remaining in the league, Ashcott, Puriton, Walton and Woolavington.
Seven members are attending the Soup and Pud lunch at Walton. Trish will host a coffee morning on March 9 in aid of St Margaret’s Hospice. Ladies Who Lunch meet on February 10 at the Castlebrook Inn. The Annual General Meeting of the Meadway Hall will be held March 23. Patricia Heap is standing down as our representative on the village hall committee, Trish expressed our heartfelt thanks to her for all the hard work she had put in on our behalf. A new representative is required and Trish asked for a volunteer. Monday April 24 a W I Speakers Audition will be held at the hall and we are required to supply the catering service. This will involve tea, coffee, cakes, and soup or ploughman’s for lunch.
Sandy Bateman, our speaker introduced us to the Magic of Minack. Her talk consisted of two parts, a brief history of the Minack Theatre and secondly her personal involvement in the theatre. Sandy is a retired primary teacher, a member of Dundry W I and a Friend of the Minack. Rowena Cave established the Minack in 1931 practically building it single handed with the help of two local labourers who were knowledgable of building materials and methods.
Sandy decided she wanted to be an actress when she was 16 years old, she was allowed to attend a theatre school part time whilst working by day in a book shop at Bristol. The proprietor of the theatre school took pupils to perform at the Minack. John and Jacky Isles of Abbots Leigh Bristol formed a theatre company called Abbots Leigh Players and through this Sandy had the opportunity to perform at the Minack. The Minack is a magical place and Sandy has remained enamoured to
this day, although no longer taking part in performances.
The procedure is for a theatre company to pay rent to the Minack in order to perform there, in the early days the facilities were very limited but now are much improved. A committee chooses several plays to be submitted for consideration the trustees of the Minack making the final decision. Sandy’s first performance was in The Admiral Creighton, with rehearsals taking place at Abbots Leigh.Sandy would have to work around her commitment to her work as a school teacher which meant only performing at the end of July and throughout August but in 25 years Sandy always managed to do this. In the early days lighting was supplied by equipment taken down in a van and additional lighting supplied by car headlights but modern lighting equipment is now installed.
Saturday mornings were “get in and out” days, Sunday mornings, on stage at 10 am and rehearse all day. Sunday night major dress rehearsal the audience consisting of trustees and friends.
The weather can be awful but rarely stops a performance except on one occasion when it was halted half way through due to a violent thunderstorm. Amongst Sandy’s adventures was an occasion during a performance of Hay Fever when it rained so hard the toast on a plate was floating. Her final appearance was in 2004 in The Owl and the Pussycat, when, in costume, she decided she was really too old to clamber up and down rocks.
Sandy still goes down in June July and August to see the Friday night performances. Rowena’s legacy is carried on with Proms at the Minack in September whilst in the winter months the famous Fishermans’ Friend Singers perform.A continuing legacy is that of Cambridge University students performing Gilbert and Sullivan music.
In conclusion, Sandy told us of an occasion, when by this time she found herself being a single parent and finding it difficult to pay for accommodation for herself and her daughter to attend the Minack, having talked to Jacky Isles, Jacky and her husband paid the rent of her bungalow. This kindness,said Sandy illustrates the magic and wonderful atmosphere of being involved with and associated with the Magic of Minack.
Verity Linnett thanked Sandy, saying how much she had enjoyed both sections of the talk. Sandy had set up a very comprehensive picture display of the history of Minack which we were able to browse whilst Sandy judge the competition A Theatre Programme which was won by Denise Larson second Diane Mitchell with Mary Burt’s programme which was for a Strode Theatre production featuring her granddaughter, Hannah, third. The Flower of the Month winner was Trish Cox with snowdrops.
Next month’s speaker is Judith Stewart subject, Tapping Therapy with the competition for a pillbox.
The Christmas celebrations kicked off with some members taking part in the Compton Capers at the Meadway Hall in November.
December 7 and members attended the carol service at Wells Cathedral. In the evening we went to the Lime Kiln for our annual Christmas meal, this was well attended and the food and service could not be faulted. The only thing missing was sparkly earrings, another of our quirky traditions which seems to have lost its appeal – pity. Thanks go to Val Day for the excellent organisation of this event.
Dec 5 saw the Group Christmas Concert at Walton village hall and once again members performed a sketch.
We welcomed a visitor, Libby, to our meeting. Janet told us of a request from the village hall committee for any ideas we might have for improvements or additions to our already excellent hall.
The unanimous feedback was for replacement of the existing noisy heating system, but this might prove to be a bridge too far with problems situating radiators etc.A thankyou letter was received from A C W W for our donation. It seems likely that the proposed visit to the Houses of Parliament in the new year will go ahead as will the visit to the Custody Unit at Bridgwater on January 31 at 10 am but we may not be lucky enough to be allocated a place.
Resolutions were voted on.
Presentation of Cups. The winner of Flower of the Month – Angela Castle
The competition cup – Pat Maddaford
And last but not least, the Skittles cup – Mary Burt.
This month’s flower of the month was won by Janet Wall with Christmas Roses and the competition for a Christmas decoration won by Pat Maddaford second Trish Cox third Christina Napper.
Our speaker, Deanna de Burgh who hails from Mells, the village famous for its daffodil festival introduced us to the making of hand crafted chocolates. Deanna, formerly a yoga teacher, suffered a life changing illness in 2010 which resulted in her becoming almost housebound. Undeterred Deanna learnt the craft of making chocolates in all manner of patterns and shapes.Deanna despatched her husband to buy the moulds and the Belgium chocolates needed to get started. Although Deanna favours Belgium chocolate, many of her pupils sing the praises of the chocolate from a well known discount store.
Interesting facts from the history of chocolate beans, the currency was three cocoa beans for the services of a lady of the night and one hundred to purchase a slave.
Deanna manufactured a corgi and a crown for the Queen’s Jubilee and having sent these to Buckingham Palace received a very royal acknowledgment.
Useful tips, do not keep chocolate in the fridge. Kitchen needs to be at a good room temperature when working, it is very therapeutic and grandchildren can be very useful when it comes to wrapping the finished article in attractive packaging. Claire Axten thanked Deanna and we were then able to take advantage of the colourful display of goodies brought by Deanna. We were all tempted to buy, even if we had finished our Christmas shopping, deciding to spoil ourselves instead of everyone else.
Sheila Taylor thanked the craft ladies for all the articles produced during the year, the sale of which has helped to swell the coffers.
Great excitement as we chose a present from Secret Santa drank wine and ate mince pies. This was followed by a very amusing sketch a parody of Cinderella performed by Janet Davies, Mary Burt, Trish Cox, Val Day and Anthea Bell. Finishing with the singing of carols, we acknowledge the ending of another memorable year, we look forward to meeting up again in January when the speaker will be Ian Williamson My Trip to Nepal the competition being for a holiday souvenir. Remember, subs will be due in January.
Happy New Year to all W I friends far and wide.