Member’s Night

Blagdon WI – April Meeting

The  April meeting is called ‘Members Night’ because ordinary members of the Institute, not the Officers of the Committee and those who normally keep the evening running,  take the roles of Chairman and Secretary, and run the raffle, make the tea, provide the entertainment and so on.  But more importantly it marks another birthday anniversary in the life of Blagdon Institute – we are now sixty seven year old.  But first we had the business part of the meeting with President Judith Swetman opening proceedings by welcoming Ann,  a new visitor, to join us, and the singing of Jerusalem (we still keep up the old traditional ways!).  The record of the March meeting was approved and matters arising from it were taken forward.  The Garden Party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace will be attended by our President, and well she deserves to enjoy the delights of the event – we all look forward to seeing the ‘Hat’!  On the 14th April is our Group Meeting and various items destined to be part of our entry into the Group Competition were looked at, mulled over and altered to be better suited to the subject,  which this year is to be  ‘A Gift Box from Queen Mary for a WW2 Soldier’.   After the details of our forthcoming trips to the theatre in Bristol and down to Dunster were given out and various events to be held by the Avon Federation were announced, the meeting was handed over to the Members Night Committee Chairman Pat Hicks.

Pat first asked her Secretary to read out the record of the last Members’ Night meeting; these were approved and thanks were given to the Institute Committee for all its hard work on Members’ behalf, together with all those who work in the background to support them – tonight it’s your turn to relax and enjoy.  Pat gave us out a couple of quizzes to get our brain cells going – we do like our quizzes.  But I must say either they are getting harder or my brain cells are  getting smaller – there were more exclamations of ‘oh, of course it is’, when the time came for the answers, than ever before!

We were in need of a reviving coffee or tea by then and eagerly partook of the inviting supper laid out for us – some Members make the most delicious things to bring.  The larger than usual raffle was drawn and everyone enjoyed the time to chat to new and old members, which sometimes we don’t get in a packed normal meeting.  So much so that time ran out and we had to forgo the planned game of Hoy; however we will squeeze it in on another night soon.   Thank you to the Members’ Night Committee for a relaxed enjoyable evening; our meeting next month is on Thursday 14th May.

May is always the month when we debate the Resolution to be put forward at the National Federation AGM in London in June, this year it is ‘failing to care’ .  The WI has a long history of fighting to put right what they think is wrong in our country – the Resolution, which is sure to be a cracker and highly relevant to a great many of WI members everywhere,  reads

“This meeting calls on HM government to remove the distinction between nursing care and personal care in the assessment of the needs of individuals, in order to advance health and wellbeing”.  Afterwards we have Gina Merret-Smith telling us about the work and life of Marianne North (1830-1890).   She was a prolific English Victorian biologist and botanical artist, notable for her plant and landscape paintings, her extensive foreign travels, her writings, her plant discoveries and the creation of her gallery at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.  Sounds an interesting person – we welcome new visitors to our meetings, 7.30pm in the village club, please join us.