News updates


MONTHLY MEETINGS Are held on Friday afternoons at the Community Centre commencing at 2pm

They are listed in the Blue Book (Page 3) and also postered on the Community Centre Noticeboard.

Friday January 19th,...Friday February 16th,...Friday March 16th,....Friday April 20th,... Friday May 18th.


First Aid Training

Following the collapse of a member in a class last year, the U3A Committee decided that 1st Aid training should be made available their Group Leaders.

On February 12th a large number of U3A Group Leaders attended a two hour training session on modern First Aid techniques including use of Defibrillators given by a member of the Meon Valley Heart-Start organisation. The trainer gave a very interesting ‘hands on’ talk accompanied by film clips and practical demonstrations in which our members were able to participate.

Established in 2001, Meon Valley Heart-Start is a voluntary organisation relying on public donations. Its aim is to train people in emergency life saving skills and train in excess of 1,000 people yearly in Hampshire. Contact David Williamson on 07730 148920 for information.

The Second and Final training session is due to take place on February 26th and those of you who were unable to attend the First session are strongly advised to come along!


Alton U3a Social Cycling Group.


Report on the February 6th Cycle Ride

The "We Don't Mind What The Elements Throw At Us We'll Go Out On Our Bikes Regardless Group" (formerly known as the Social Cycling Group) went out on 6 February.

After Jolly Wet January we had Frozen Feb to face (this leaves only drought, tempest and a plague of locusts in order to complete a full set of biblical visitations). Ably led by our stalwart leader "Sir Ranulph" Good we enjoyed our outing. To try to temper the cold we had all put on multiple layers beneath our "Hi-Vis" tops, so that anyone seeing us must have thought that there had been a mass break out from the local Michelin tyre factory, but we were undeterred.

We sped our way through Holybourne, Wick and the Worldhams and had a well deserved coffee break at the Rose & Crown in Upper Farringdon.

The long climb up Brightstone Hill to Four Marks tested our stamina but did not find us wanting. "Sir Ranulph" planted a flag at the top, just in case we were the first cyclists ever to have made the ascent. From there we went through Four Marks, across to Medstead and back down Snode Hill.

The total distance was either 11.5 or 18 miles depending on whether you believe Chris' on bike calculator or "Sir Ranulph's" Strava app. Whatever the distance it was great fun and it made us feel good.

All the best, Rob


Report on the January Ride

In the balmy, balmy summer days the fledgling Social Cycling Group swore before all the gods of cycling and in the name of the Consummate Care and in the name of the Greater Good that they would not, on any account, go out in the winter months. But memory (especially at our age) and the dim, dark days of December play funny tricks on the mind. So when a siren call arrived on 1 January summoning us to congregate at the Community Centre on 2 January at 10.30 six of us were keen enough to slough off the effects of too much food, drink and of being confined in a small space with relatives to want to take to the road. The rain held off for all of two minutes. By the time we had climbed Snode Hill we were soaked. Undetected by scientists there are in fact ten levels of wetness. By Preston Candover we had reached level nine and as we pulled up at the Yew Tree level ten. We squelched our way through some deliciously warming soup and then made our wet way back to Alton where (in my case) a hot bath cast the day in a warm sepia glow. There are no pictures of this stirring event, but The Yew Tree Six know who they are; they don't wear medals, but you can tell by the look in their eyes that they have conquered hydrophobia and are ready for anything the next twelve months can throw at them.

Thanks Steve (and also to Brian and Christina for doing a recce on the route and organising us)

All the best


The rides are open to all Alton U3A members but if you intend to join us we will need to know in advance, with an appropriate e-mail contact address, so that notifications can be sent out if the weather, or other circumstances lead to last-minute changes.
Please send your e-mails to

We will simply need:
• Your name
• Your e-mail address
• Name and contact number of a relative or other in case of an emergency
• Details of any medical conditions or medication which might be relevant to this activity

We look forward to hearing from you.


Alton U3a Social Cycling Group - November's Ride in the Rain

Those who claim to know about these things have said that, where
outdoor activities are concerned, there is no such thing as “the wrong
kind of weather”, there is just “inappropriate clothing”!

The Alton U3a Social Cycling Group outing on Tuesday 7 November went
ahead despite a frustratingly ambiguous weather forecast. So far, we
have been very fortunate with the weather for these rides, but good
luck is bound to run out sooner or later. Almost inevitably, on this
occasion, the rain arrived several hours earlier than expected.
Eleven keen riders set out from the Community Centre at 10.00am, full
of eager anticipation. A bracing 18-mile circuit involved a steady
climb up Old Odiham Road to the Golden Pot, before looping round to
Long Sutton and Well, and then swooping down to Bentley for a
well-deserved coffee break at The Star at Bentley. By this time the
occasional light showers had turned to a fairly steady drizzle, and
the warmth, comfort and general camaraderie in the pub led to a
slightly longer-than-usual stay. The return journey via Isington,
Binsted and Holybourne was easily accomplished once the worst of the
rain had passed over. The beauty of the countryside in autumn almost
made up for the inclement weather….

The next outing will be on Tuesday 5 December, leaving the Community
Centre at the slightly later start time of 11.00am

The ride will be shorter-than-usual, too. We plan to ride by a fairly direct route
back to the Star at Bentley, where we have a table booked for
12.00noon. This will be our relatively low-key “Christmas do”, to
celebrate the success of this new group over the past few months since
the initial trial run in June, and to speculate about possible runs in
2018 and beyond.
Anybody who has participated in any the past 5 rides
is warmly invited to come along, but please notify one or both of
your organisers – Brian and Richard – in advance so that we can make
sure that we have a suitably - sized table to fit everybody in!