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Why did I join the U3A? - Bob Alden-Smith
I first noticed Goudhurst & District University of the Third Age was holding an inaugural meeting in the Village Hall a couple of years ago and my immediate reaction was that I did not feel able to cope with a university and all that the name implied.
However, having had further thoughts, together with the fact of advancing years and the loss of a few lifetime friends, I realised I was starting to live quite a narrow existence and wondered how to meet people of a similar age at this stage in life. I loved spending time in my garden, but was missing the company of my contemporaries.
I decided, with a little trepidation, to attend the Goudhurst meeting. That day is now firmly fixed in my memory and my life has certainly changed for the better.
I am of a slightly shy nature and, when attending the meeting, spent a little time walking around reading the notice boards, not asking any questions. A charming lady, noticing my dilemma, came up to me and explained the purpose of the U3A. There was no pressure to join there and then but, by the time I arrived home, I had decided to “give it a go” and the Psychology Group seemed an appealing subject to start with.
U3A is not connected to any university, but is a very enjoyable opportunity to meet new people, learn new things and think new thoughts.
At the first meeting of the Psychology Group, with 8 or 10 people, I immediately felt at ease. We listened to a recorded lecture for about half an hour and then spent another hour discussing our thoughts in a relaxed manner over coffee. As each lecture built on the previous one, by the end of the course we had learnt a lot and made some very good friends. I have since joined the Table Tennis Group as well, meeting once a fortnight in the late afternoon, again with a small number of people. We have great fun with plenty of laughs.
The Goudhurst & District U3A is a very friendly group with many small activity groups within it. It is possible to find an interest that you might not have particularly thought about before. Group meetings are all held at various times during the month, either morning, afternoon or evening, some weekly, some fortnightly and some monthly. There is a variety of subjects which can be found on our website. Should any of them appeal, you can contact the group leader by clicking on the link indicated.
Our monthly meetings, held on the third Wednesday of each month in the Goudhurst Village Hall, have been a great success with speakers giving talks on a variety of topics. After the talk there is a chance to chat to other members and enjoy tea, coffee and biscuits.
Our local U3A is organised by a committee of volunteers, together with a band of helpers, who willingly give their time for your enjoyment.
Come and attend one of our monthly meetings and find out what you might be missing!