Issue 40

October 2011

STRAY NEWS
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Group News (Cont’d)

Table Tennis

The next quarter of U3A table tennis will start on Tuesday, October 4 at Bishop Monkton Village Hall and will take place each Tuesday afternoon from 2 to 4pm for the succeeding ten weeks.

The resumption follows a break during the summer months when many of the members were taking part in the U3A Croquet, also held at Bishop Monkton.

The table tennis leader, Richard Field, says the Tuesday afternoon session is filling up fast. Once it is full, and if there is sufficient demand, he will try to organise a second U3A table tennis session on Monday mornings from 10am to 12 noon.

If you would like to join either of these sessions please contact Richard Field by e-mailing him at indicating which group you would like to join, assuming vacancies still exist.

There is a £20 subscription for each 10-week quarter, or £35 if you sign up for two consecutive quarters.

Table tennis is enjoyable, fun, and just a bit competitive. It offers a good healthy workout as well as being a way of meeting new friends.  Beginners or players with previous experience are both welcome.

Tai Chi

This is the fourth year that Tai Chi has been on the programme - but sadly, although there appears to be lots of interest - not many people join this group. However there is a core of folk who keep coming - but we do need more people to ensure continuity. There is no need to be expert and although we all try, perfection is a long time coming - so do not be afraid to join. We meet on Thursday afternoons at 3.30pm for an hour at the Styan Community Centre, Jennyfield. The form is tailored to the older person so there is no need to be athletic. The aim is breathing, posture, balance and controlled movement. Why not come along and give it a try.

Contact for more information.

Textile  Crafts

During the rest of the year, members will be working on their individual projects  which include goldwork, stumpwork and crewel embroidery.

BUT – there is also a challenge : to complete a “Fantasy Landscape” of sky and fields. Each section has to be in a different colour( avoiding green ) and in a different stitch and it’s hoped that this will stimulate interest in a variety of stitches. When I was looking through my books of stitches in preparation for this project, I was struck by how many stitches are named after the World of Nature. Plants are shown by Tulip, Rose, Daisy, Oak Leaf, Fern, Seed, Moss and Thorn stitches while there are also Herringbone, Beetle, Bee,  Bull’s Head, Centipede, Fishbone, Fly, Feather, Mouse, Pekinese and Spider stitches to  represent creatures.

Early embroidery usually took sources from the natural world so this is not really surprising. Members of the group can make their own choices so, fortunately, do not have to face the intricacies of Spanish Knotted Feather Stitch!


– Group Leader

Writing for Pleasure

The recent AGM/Open day saw the launch of the anthology of the U3A Creative Writing Group. It is a memorial to Robin Coatman, who was a well-known and well respected member of the U3A. Probably best remembered for the unstinting support he gave to his wife Janet, when she was chairperson for so long.

He is sadly missed by all the members of the Creative Writers Group where he was a very popular and talented writer. The anthology incorporates a selection of Robins work, as well as some short stories/poems by other members of the group. It is on sale at £3:50 with all profits going to MacMillan Cancer Support.


Ron Williamson.

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