News updates


You may be interested to know that the Twinning Association are holding an art talk on 1 November.

The title of Art Talk is “Franglaise”, the Impressionists’ view of Britain, by Dr Wayne Jefferson.
It will be on 1st November at 7:30pm in the Alton Maltings.

The cost will be £5 (including first drink) received in advance (preferred) or at the door.



Thank you to everyone who attended the trial session on 18 September.

Option 1: The original intention

It had been intended to run 25 weekly two hour sessions – with separate one hour classes for chair and floor exercises.

The cost: gold membership PLUS a supplement to cover the tuition fees of £37.50.

From the response thus far it seems unlikely we have the 40 people we would need to finance it.

Option 2: The alternative

We might be able to organise 25 weekly one hour sessions combining floor and chair exercises. We would need thirty people to sign up (and that would also be the maximum size of the group). If we were oversubscribed the choice would have to be made by drawing names out of a hat.

The cost would be: silver membership (existing bronze and red members could pay the difference to upgrade) plus a supplement to cover tuition fees of £25, payable in advance.

What's next?

We need to find out if we have sufficient interest to be able to run Option 2.

Step 1: If you want to join the class and are willing to pay the necessary fees please leave your details (name, email address (if any) and phone number) in an envelope marked “U3A Keep Fit/Yoga class” at the Community Centre reception by Saturday 19 October at the latest.

Step 2: We will let you know if the class is running and if you were lucky in any draw during the week beginning Monday 22 October. We will need payment in full no later than the start of the first class on Tuesday 30 October at 10.00.

The dates of classes will be:

October 30
November 6 13 20 27
December 4 11
January 15 22 29
February 5 12 19 26
March 5 12 19
April 2 9 16 23 30
May 7 14 21

Any queries: Rob Smith or 01420 768752



A second Current Affairs group is being set up as the existing one was oversubscribed.
The first meeting of the new group will take place on Wed 3 October in Room 3 at the Community Centre at 10.00.
The intention is that it will then meet on the first and third Wednesday of each month. It will be a small group (limited to a maximum of 12 people).
If you are interested in joining (there are currently approx. 6 spaces) please contact Rob Smith on 768752 or.


Social Cycling Group

REPORT ON THE 10 Mile Ride - Tuesday 2nd October 10am starting Alton Community Centre

Our October ride saw the return of Blessed Brian (Our Great Leader). Having returned from his holiday Cycling With Dolphins (or it might have been Pedalling With Penguins - it was definitely exotic) he was in fine fettle - fit, bronzed and raring to go. But OGL is nothing if not compassionate: realising that some of his acolytes were not such finely tuned athletes as he himself is he treated us very gently. Twelve of us followed him out through Holybourne. We took a short stop at Binsted Sports Ground where we mingled with the Walking For Health group who were assembling there (the sense of wellness emanating from our two groups was palpable) before we headed off to Blacknest Golf Club for a welcome coffee, cake and chewing of the cud (and obligatory group photo).

We voted unanimously to avoid the nasty steep climb back into Binsted and instead go via the slightly longer but decidedly gentler route via Bentley. We clocked up an impressive 14.9 miles at an average of 9.1 mph, whilst experiencing much enjoyment and exercise to boot.

There are plans for a second, longer ride on the second Friday of each month. OGL has obviously picked up some Prezzo vouchers somewhere as projected routes all seem to involve visiting one of their restaurants along the way.

Submitted by Rob Smith (Our Even Greater Leader!)- Web Ed


SOCIAL CYCLE RIDES will be on the first Tuesday of the month throughout the year. They will start at 10am and will be at a leisurely pace of a distance that the riders are happy with. As far as possible, routes will follow quiet roads, and occasionally, firm off-road tracks.
No one will be left behind!

Although a reasonable level of fitness is desirable, these are social rides, strictly for
pleasure, and are not intended for racing or intensive exercise.
Riders do not need to be super-fit, and it is OK to get off and push when we reach the steeper sections.
All participants must have an e-mail address so that we can keep in touch in case of any last-minute change of plans.

If you are interested in joining this ride, please email:

Please also ensure that your bike is roadworthy.


ALTON U3A, 25th Anniversary Celebratory Boat Trip

Following a number of earlier activities organised to celebrate our Alton U3A’s 25th Anniversary, they came to a climax on Wednesday 11th July when 86 Members boarded two coaches to travel to Henley upon Thames for a Tea Party on a two hour boat ride on the Thames.

The glorious weather we had enjoyed for several weeks continued to be extremely hot but thankfully the coaches were air-conditioned so we were all comfortable as we travelled the 33 miles, to arrive in Henley at around mid-day. After being dropped off very near to the Thames, we all went our own ways to secure lunches and much needed liquids before gathering at two o’clock to board our vessel. This was a beautiful reproduction of a ‘stern wheeler’ appropriately named the ‘Queen of New Orleans’, with a mock paddle wheel and two enormous chimneys’!

Being a large craft, there was ample room for all of us to gather on the exceedingly hot open top deck, but thankfully as we cast off we were treated to the occasional and very welcome waft of breeze!
The on-board bar soon became very busy as numerous jugs of Pimm’s and other drinks were purchased to quell the thirsts of our, by now very hot passengers.

Progressing up stream we viewed some of the wonderful, expensive properties lining the banks until the anticipated announcement came that High Tea was ready to be served down below in the beautifully appointed main cabin. Here we were met with tables full of food stretching the entire length of the cabin, all set before us on linen tablecloths were china plates, dainty cups and saucers and cake stands laden with a variety of dainty sandwiches, cakes and of course, scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam.

Chairman Rob said a few well-chosen words before we all set too with the serious business of consuming the feast set before us accompanied by plenty of welcome tea and coffee.

With appetites satisfied, those of us capable of movement made our way back to the upper deck to enjoy the scenery accompanied by a small armada of expensive launches which couldn’t get past us until the way was clear.

All too soon our craft turned about to make the return journey back to the boat yard. Going ashore we sadly had a rather lengthy wait before the arrival of our first coach and an even longer one before the second coach hove into sight. Unfortunately both had been called away to other duties and then had been badly delayed by traffic whilst returning to Henley! The only low point of what had otherwise been an extremely successful outing.

Our sincere thanks were offered to Mary and Paddy for all the rather complicated arrangements involved in what was generally considered to be a fitting way to celebrate our 25th Anniversary.

We now look forward to our 50th!

Contributed by Steve Barnes, who would be happy to publish any other Members accounts of this enjoyable occasion!