The 2017/18 season commenced last October with our monthly indoor meetings supported well by members and visitors at most of the meetings.
The speakers have been well received and the topics very varied – this year we had three new speakers. Unfortunately our Christmas evening had to be cancelled due to very severe weather conditions – but there was no speaker to cancel as we had planned a quiz evening.
Summer days out continued again this year – to Quarry Gardens, Coventry; Coughton Court house and garden; Packwood house and garden and Stowe house and garden. The weather was perfect for all the trips and at times almost too hot. We couldn’t fill the coach for all the trips but we covered our costs. All trips seemed to be enjoyed by all who were able to go. Recently we went to Westonbirt but that is in the new 2018/19 season.
The paid-up membership stands at around the 70 mark.
Unfortunately we lost 2 of our regular members and 1 who hasn’t been able to attend for some years, through death – Dr. Bruce Parker who had been an instigator in encouraging us in organising on more summer days out, for which we are very grateful to him, and my husband Gerald Forse who has been a great help to me as secretary especially where computers are concerned. We are missing both of them. Also Eileen Forbes who attended meetings long before I joined but with advancing years and deterioration in her sight had been unable to attend meetings for some years. I was able to represent the association at their funerals and sent sympathy cards to the families.
We received our usual gift of £50 from the Batsford Foundation, this is sent to help off-set the cost of speakers.
The Town Festival usually held in June, when we have a plant stall, had to be cancelled this year so we are a little down on our income this year – but as Linda will tell you later I don’t think the bailiffs are likely to be calling on us anytime soon.
Around 6/8 members and friends continue to help with the garden at Abbeyfield during the summer/autumn season. Also 3 have spent time tidying the garden at the front of Beech Haven care home.
I would like to say thank you to the committee for your continued support, also the refreshment team and to you, members and friends for your support at meetings and on trips. I am also very grateful to some of you for taking on some of my jobs over the last years when I was finding it difficult to continue.
In closing I would like to thank Paula Mitchell and Reg. Cornish for their faithful service on the committee – Paula became chair in 2008 and Reg joined the committee in 2010 and then became deputy chair in 2012. Due to family commitments Reg. feels that he needs to stand down from the committee but Paula is willing to continue to serve on the committee.