Banstead Area

Welcome to the Banstead U3A Website

Welcome to the website of the U3A Banstead Area.

The University of the Third Age [U3A] began in France in 1972 and had an emphasis on academic learning guided by the local university. In 1981 the British version of the U3A was first discussed at a conference in Cambridge and, as they say, the rest is history.

The U3A is a non-political and non-religious independent, national organisation with currently more than 1000 branches spread throughout the country. Membership is open to anyone who is retired, semi-retired, no longer in regular employment or whose family commitments have reduced. It suits those who now have time to undertake an interest or pastime or to meet new people.

U3A Banstead Area is one of the oldest established U3As having been formed in 1985 and has over 650 members and 66- plus interest groups.

Members form interest groups covering a wide range of topics and activities. No qualifications are needed and none given. These are self-help groups with all members expected to take an active part. Learning for its own sake and its enjoyment are the prime motives, not awards. Members meet regularly in people's homes, although some groups meet in halls or meeting rooms, depending on the size of the group.

We also hold regular Open Meetings that are available to the whole membership. These are addressed by guest speakers who talk on a wide range of varied and interesting topics. Entrance is free to members and includes teas / coffees and biscuits. As well as an interesting talk, these provide a good opportunity to meet with other members in a social setting.

We issue a Newsletter 3 times a year which keeps members informed of future plans as well as providing reports on what has happened across our U3A especially in the interest groups.

Membership costs £12 per year which is reduced to £10 the following year if renewal is paid by 31st October. Reduced costs exist for those joining later in the year or for those already in another U3A. Please see the Membership Application Form (above right) for details.

To join us please download, complete and return our Membership Application Form as instructed on the form. There are two additional documents attached to the application form. The first contains some extra details which you may find useful; the second is an additional form for you to complete and send in with your application form. This second form is forwarded to our Groups Co-ordinator and provides the basis for considering new groups and identifying possible helpers.

Contact Gill Ross for further information.

We look forward to seeing you.

Gill Ross

Chairman