Beccles

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Christmas Meeting: 11 December 2019 - 9.30am
Doors Open 9.30am for refreshments
Venue: Beccles Public Hall
Admission: £2 per person - members only

Monthly Meeting Report for November 2019

On its way

To see minutes from previous meetinsg, please to go Meetings

Monthly Talks

Monthly Talk November 2019

Decoding Stonehenge – Lionel Sims

Stonehenge Decoded Lionel Sims is Emeritus Head of the Department of Anthropology, Development and Politics at the University of East London. He continues to be research active, is Vice President of The European Society for Astronomy in Culture.

Lionel gave us his explanation of how he believed Stonehenge was formed and an interesting insight into his research as to why it may have been built.

Stonehenge is perhaps the world’s most famous prehistoric monument. It was built in several stages: the first monument was an early henge monument, built about 5,000 years ago, and the unique stone circle was erected in the late Neolithic period about 2500 BC. In the early Bronze Age many burial mounds were built nearby. Two types of stone are used at Stonehenge – the larger sarsens (sandstone slabs) and the smaller ‘bluestones’. The sarsens were erected in two concentric arrangements – an inner horseshoe and an outer crescent or ring; some were assembled into the iconic three-pieced structures called trilithons that stand tall in the center. The bluestones were set up between them in a double arc.

Probably at the same time that the stones were being set up in the centre of the monument, the sarsens close to the entrance were raised, together with the four Station Stones on the periphery. About 200 or 300 years later the central bluestones were rearranged to form a circle and inner oval (which was again later altered to form a horseshoe). The earthwork Avenue was also built at this time, connecting Stonehenge with the river Avon.

Stonehenge’s sarsens, of which the largest weighs more than 40 tons and rises 24 feet, were likely sourced from quarries 25 miles north of Salisbury Plain and transported with the help of sledges and ropes; they may even have already been scattered in the immediate vicinity when the monument’s Neolithic architects first broke ground there.

The smaller bluestones, on the other hand, have been traced all the way to the Preseli Hills in Wales, some 200 miles away from Stonehenge. How, then, did prehistoric builders without sophisticated tools or engineering haul these boulders, which weigh up to 40 tons, over such a great distance?

To read more please go to Monthly Talk

Programme of talks for 2020 - From Jazz to Astronomy and Antiques to Contraception, there is an excellent range of talks planned for 2020.

Group News

Fun Rowing - The rowing group has changed its name to Fun Rowing; same lovely people, same fun on the river. The group is now suspended until next Spring when the weather brightens up.

Madrigal Singing SATB We always welcome new singers and at the moment are particularly looking out for a male tenor and another 'top sop'. If you have always wanted to sing madrigals, why not get in touch?

New Group - Saving Young Trees If you are passionate about saving Britain's natural woodland and unique landscape, this is the group for you. Please take a look at what the group aims to do and contact the convenor, Philip Evans, by email or phone.

Art for Fun New Group - Art for Fun We are very grateful to a new member who has come forward offering to teach people to paint still life. This is a great opportunity if you have always wanted to learn but never had the opportunity. The initial program would be for 12 weeks, every week and then a break. If group members are committed and passionate about their learning then a second 12 week programme may be run culminating in an exhibition.

If you are interested then contact the Chairman on Chair or ring 07835 509773. A meeting will be set up to discuss the day, time and venue etc and a course syllabus will be available. More information on Art for Fun

Historic Walks 3 - What better way to round off a year of fascinating historic walks than a amble around 'Secret Bungay' with Chris Reeves followed by a tea at Earsham Street Cafe. Walk starts at about 2pm (I think) with tea at 3.30. Historic Walks 1 and Historic Walks 2 are invited to join in. Please let Sally know via the bird on Historic Groups 3 if you wish the join the walk and / or tea. The 2020 programme of walks for Historic Walks 3 is now available on the group page.

Groups closed Unfortunately the following groups have had to close:

  • Drama
  • Ballroom Dancing 1 and 2
  • Spanish 2

On the bright side, if anyone is interested in Ballroom Dancing but couldn’t make the day or time or venue please get in touch by ringing 07835 509773

Events News

Lots of new outings added for 2020, so why not take a look on the Outings page