Forest Town & District

Members Page

Now that we are meeting again I have changed the name of this page.

Make this page your own, send your words, pictures, thoughts or anything you want to share with other members to:

Due to restrictions on how many photographs are allowed on one webpage earlier photographs can be seen on the sub-page - Staying Home 2.

Click on the pictures to see a larger image.


Dignity Poem

Please, dear, take your time with me
I'm not as fast as I used to be...

My mind is willing, my body is weak
But do you realise that when you speak?

"Morning love, it's time to get up"
Covers back, no tea in my cup...

I know I'm slow; I really try
But gone are the days when I could fly...

Up at dawn, housework fun
Kids all sorted, shopping done...

Washing dried and put away
Dinner made for 6 today...

One by one, they all left home
Leaving me and my beloved all alone...

A year or two was all we had
Then my love died, and I was sad...

I couldn't eat, I couldn't cope
I couldn't bring myself to hope...

My days were dark, and I got ill
My tears were many, my screaming shrill...

"Mum, we're really worried about you,
So listen to what we will do...

There's a home, not far, it's nice, you'll be fine,
We're going there tomorrow at nine"

So here I am, possessions few
I rarely get many things new...

The years I gave, they seem in vain
I don't know when you'll visit again...

I've done my job; I've lost my worth
What reason is my being on Earth?

I sit, I rock, I stare and gaze
These are the things that fill my days...

I wonder if you would be feeling blue
If you were me and I were you...

All I ask is small, really
Please, dear, take your time with me...


For music lovers Click on this link: Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, turn the volume up!


Sagradia I am pleased to have had one of my photographs accepted for the u3a Eye Architecture & Buildings theme.

You can see mine and other u3a members submissions by clicking this link: u3a Eye.

Bob Hunt.


Church This fabulous model of St.Thomas’ Church - Yes it is a model, not a real church, but you do need to look more than once! was built by U3A member Pamela Lander who, now things are getting a bit better, Pamela says she wants to share with us the things that have kept her busy during these past few months.


Project 1. The rainy day project.

"The model of St.Thomas’ Church was purchased as a kit last February at a model railway exhibition at Doncaster racecourse.
I chose it because it was different from the usual railwayana, stations, cottages etc. I was told by the stall holder that it was one of the most complicated kits they have produced.

However, up for the challenge we got it, little did I know how much of an important part it would play in the coming months.

Constructed of laser cut wood in over 200 parts, the main building went together as planned.

The Church window windows took a long time with inner stone mouldings, stained glass and outer stone mouldings, followed by stone ledges, outer coping and finally decorative additions, all of which were painted, assembled and glued into position with the aid of tweezers.
The tower and main building were then put together, the outside finish was applied (very messy) and moss finish and coping painted in stone wash.

Lights were fitted inside with some help and the base constructed, again in wood.

Gravel paths and lawns were added, I then set about making the Church yard as real as I could using Pauline Marples Forest Town book for reference, soldier’s graves were placed carefully into position, benches and graves made from card and bits leftover from previous models.
Church - Soldiers graves Church grave
The tree is made from wire and grated latex from railway model suppliers.

Church gate The lychgate, copied from another Church, added style to its surroundings.
Still ongoing, this morning I made the small notice board; a porch light and sound board for hymns will all come in the near future. "


Project 2. The fine day project.

"The garden being on a slope was adapted for my late husband’s garden railway, the bottom part being slabbed, I decided to take up a part of this area and construct a Japanese style garden.

PamelaLanderGarden1 The PamelaLanderGarden2 idea of constructing a dried river bed, 3 corner elevation Japanese lanterns and stones was copied from a small book I had been given many years ago, however, because of lockdown, most of the plants used were grown, and bonsai trees, mosses and ferns were already in different areas of the main garden.

Now things are getting better I want to share with you all the things that have kept me busy on most days during these past few months, working outside on my Japanese garden project or inside on St. Thomas’ Church.

The joys of having spare time are a blessing."
Pamela Lander.


You may remember back in April Tina Shirt sent us pictures and words of her garden projects,
Tina has sent updated photographs of her garden:
Tina's Garden in April and July

Tina Shirt Garden April Tina Shirt Garden July Tina Shirt Garden July (click on the images to see a larger version)


Local History

Hello everyone, we do hope you are all well and keeping safe.
How will we look back on this period in our local history in years to come?

We will look back on a time when we had to stay in and relied on people to help with shopping. When the highlights of this time for Malcolm and me were an outing to the hospital, believe it or not for appointments!
Some of you will be seeing the closed shops, or the ques outside supermarkets because of limited access. What else? please email us and let us know.

I think our new look U3A newsletter is good and it was packed with information. You may also wonder why there was not a Local History report. I did send one in plus a photo about the chemists unfortunately Helen ran out of space and decided this was one she could hold over till next time - she did let me know. We may even get two in next time depending on how much information people send in.

Take care all of you, thank goodness for modern technology and we can keep in touch.

Pauline & Malcolm


Life in the slow lane.

Uninterrupted time gives us the opportunity to take up ‘slow’ activities. Phil, my husband, is stone carving in the garden using a Mason’s dummy and claw chisel on a lump of limestone. Will it be a gargoyle or maybe a stone feature? I don’t know.
Otherwise some of his time is spent pondering chess moves with his on-line chess opponent - one in Moldova and one closer to home.
Me? Getting to grips with cable stitches in a new piece of knitting and trying to solve a cryptic crossword gives me a change from gardening, reading and planning an on-line photo scrapbook.
Keep safe.

Susan Wright (Photos on the right).


Hi everyone, good to hear how lots of you are passing your time – gardening projects, “Good works” projects like knitting for the Police convoy and making scrubs, time spent in reflection - some in poetic form.
And then there’s those of us who are blessed by being able to take advantage of technology.

That’s where I come in – I feel I have two to thank - God for technology and Bob for teaching me how to use it in his Technology group, I would never have believed how much of my time during a lockdown would be spent using either my phone or my laptop.

I have joined two prayer groups – a daily one using Zoom and a weekly one using What’s App. Also I am taking part in a weekly Bible study using Zoom. I am connecting with Christians from all over the place. I absolutely love each Sunday because of the wealth of online services from which to choose. You can visit several different churches every week!

And then there’s all my online study that’s involved in training to be a local preacher. I am trying to take advantage of this opportunity, of no distractions, to make as much progress as possible. I hope to be close to qualifying when we come out of lockdown – or, at least, I pray that is the case. !
I never thought there would come a day when I would say, “Thank you for computers and smart phones,” that is until now!

Lynne Cooper



During the last 2 weeks I was recruited to make scrubs for local NHS and care home use.
This has been very rewarding and certainly kept me busy.
If any sewers out there fancy helping out take a look at Scrubs for Frontline NHS - Ravenshead & North Notts on Facebook or drop me an email.
The group rely on donations to buy fabrics to keep this enterprise going.

Jane Atkins
You can email Jane via the Contact page on this website


Hello everyone,

In Addition to the gardening information below, each morning I spend time with my sketch book and paints.
Our daughter in Scotland encouraged me to join this online drawing group, so seeing as my art 'skills' have been very hit and miss over more years than I care to remember I thought I would have a go.
We are given a brief each week of what to do ( I don't always understand it) but I find I am really enjoying it.
Will I venture out into the countryside with my sketch book and paints once we are allowed out? who knows!
Malcolm has not taken up this challenge, he prefers playing chess via the mobile phone!

Pauline (Marples)



A message from Beryl.

Just thought I would send this to you as I was amazed when my son in law went through everything, via the help of WhatsApp video, and taught me how to access YouTube on my TV.
Last night I was able to watch Andrew Lloyd Webber's show Jesus Christ Superstar as a friend had told me that there is one at 7pm Friday night and is accessible for 48hours.
This is a wonderful way to spend the evening and I'm sure a lot of members would enjoy it.
My daughter also sent info on getting shows from the theatre Royal.
Hope you are keeping well and safe,
Beryl Guest.


Blossoms -


Aloe Vera,

I am offering a 15% discount on all of my products and I will donate a further 15% value in products to the NHS nurses who need gentle soaps and hand creams . I already have a contact at the Queens Med but am happy to donate them to Kingsmill if anyone in the U3A has a contact.

Our aloe Vera drinks are fantastic at supporting a healthy immune system , healthy digestive system and general health and well being as they are packed full of vitamins and minerals, our liquid soap is very gentle and detergent free and is great for protecting our skin during these times of very regular hand washing - this with our beautiful nourishing propolis cream soothe and moisturise our skin . To browse our full range members can visit my online shop.

Message or call me to order so that I can give the discount. I can arrange non contact drop deliveries and payments. Toni Hall 0787 2954657 Thankyou




Soupmaker Today's task - Defunct soup maker

My soup machine won't heat or blend
I'll have a go and try to mend
Out come the tools I need to use
(I must locate a brand new fuse)

Expertise? I haven't any
Tiny screws, there are so many
But undeterred I make a start
Base and top must come apart

Off comes the lid, all wires exposed
Bits and bobs all juxtaposed
Coils and springs, a rubber stopper,
Circuit board and roll of copper.

For inspiration, I stare a while
And then 'eureka' it made me smile,
I see the problem- know what to do
Was only moisture leaking through

So dabbing here and poking there
With cotton buds, taking care
And scraping off the rusty bits
Especially where the handle sits

A final blast with hairdryer heat
And wires tucked in ,all nice and neat
Screws all fastened, nice and tight
Could it be some soup tonight.....?
Marilyn Redfern.


From Beryl Guest,
2 weeks ago on Saturday evening my daughter, Wendy, arranged a time for her, my son-in-law, Granddaughter and 8 year old Granddaughter should share a virtual meal, we did that and then played charades which youngest member thoroughly enjoyed!

On the Sunday it was a grandson who joined me, Wendy and Paul for a game of monopoly, as it goes on for a long time after 3 hours Wendy took a photo, cashed up what we had and we resumed the game last Sunday afternoon. I even managed, with the aid of Google!, to get the monolopy board on my laptop, another enjoyable time with my family especially as I won.

I also keep in touch with friends in Spain who aren't as fortunate as I am because the majority of them can't go out and are in apartments therefore no garden to escape with their dogs. They have been in lock down longer than I have so I arrange ta time and we meet up for a virtual coffee, again via WhatsApp!

Also been in touch with some U3A members some of which I know don't do emails. Hopefully we will soon be able to meet up with everyone very soon.

Best wishes, stay safe and well,

TinaShirtGarden This little area in front of my garden room was lawn, only little bit of lawn I had and got fed up with getting wet feet walking over it every time I went out to the garden. ...and if I'm honest dragging out the mower to keep it under control was a pain.
So lawn removed, turfs laid over into new raised bed to clear the ground.
Posts, postcrete, trellis & 24 bags of gravel delivered and a few weeks later resulted in this.
Luckily, the new fence and raised bed timbers to the right in the photo were put in prior to isolation, all the raised bed timbers have had a few coats of Ronseal wood treatment colour "Blackbird" (delivered direct).
The new raised bed has been planted with herbs, rhubarb, & some soft fruit and is just waiting for a few runner beans to germinate.

Next project is underway...a couple of slabs have been removed from the small patio area. Was thinking of a water feature but will now be planting a few more veggies once I've finished digging the ground over. As you can see it this is work in progress.

My battered old window box will then be tarted up for salad leaves..but that's for next update

Stay safe and well everyone
Tina Shirt ( Edwinstowe)

Easter Easter message from Pauline - One of the things I have been doing is painting Easter cards which have been posted to members of a church group I belong to and to family members. I am sending it to one or two people as an ecard.

From Malcolm and myself - we would like to share it with all of you. Pauline Marples


From Kelvin our Welfare officer:
Good afternoon to you all,
I have not sent any messages out since the government issued the lockdown.
Today (Wednesday) is a lovely day with the sun shining and giving a great overall feeling.

We all know what we should do, and can do; I have been out for a walk in the sun today once around the block.
It had a very uplifting feel, a great to be alive feeling. But I am aware that within our families and friends some people are struggling to remain alive, they are unable to feel the immense warmth from the sun.

Even our Prime Minister Boris Johnson has become one of the many people that is suffering from this dreadful illness, Covid 19

Many people will recover from this illness, and many will not.
Remember we are all part of a far bigger family, we belong to the U3A. Think of all the divisions, groups and wider diversity amongst us.
So, if you feel vulnerable, frightened of being alone reach out and contact your family of friends, who are in the same situation. We cannot help anyone unless you tell us what it is that you require.

I feel great today and the wonderful weather we are experiencing makes me believe we will all overcome this dreadful illness in the days and weeks ahead. I for one am looking towards the month of our next U3A meeting whenever that maybe.

So stay safe, stay well, stay home and look after one another.

Kind regards

Kelvin, Forest Town & District U3A Welfare Officer


St.Pauls I have recently re-awakened my interest in Kirigami, cutting and folding paper, this image of St Pauls is cut and folded from a single sheet of A4 paper. Bob Hunt.

Are your days getting hazy, are you going stir crazy ?
Need something to do but your ideas few ?
Well read on below, 'cos you just never know
This could be your task, ( I thought I would ask)

Hello everyone
I hope you are all managing to stay well at this difficult time.
I expect some of you, like me, keep looking round for something different to pass the time.
Let's face it daytime TVs is uninspiring! We still have a way to go before we recommence pre-covid activities so here's an idea:
I have been in touch with 'police convoy' who transport aid to third world countries, they are always in need of items such as knitted blankets, jumpers and cardigans for school age children and would be pleased to receive any items from us.
Many of us can knit and could probably complete an item during 'confinement', or maybe a group can knit some same size squares for a blanket ( talk to each other). If wool or needles is a problem let me know.
If we can't get out to help in our local community we can at least be doing something useful for 'post-covid'. Just a thought!

Marilyn Redfern.


Marilyn's poem.


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