Hartley Wintney

About Us

Welcome to Hartley Wintney and District u3a

If you are no longer in full time employment, then we are here to fill a gap in your life! We offer an opportunity to meet new friends, learn something new or maybe revive an interest that has been on the back burner for a while. Please browse our website and contact us through this link if you would like some more information.

Most groups have now resumed normal activities and monthly meetings have restarted. Please look under the ‘Groups’ tab for more details of the individual Groups.

Our membership year begins in September but new members are welcome at any time during the year.

We look forward to meeting you.

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History

Hartley Wintney and District u3a came into being in 2006 with 30 members joining during the first year. Initially, meetings were held at the Cricket Pavilion until numbers increased, necessitating a move to larger premises; the Football Club filled this need. Growth continued, resulting in another move to our current location, the Victoria Hall. Our u3a has grown year on year to a current membership in excess of 400. More than 30 Interest Groups cover a range of interests and activities - academic and social, indoors and outdoors, mildly strenuous and physically undemanding.

Monthly meetings are held at the Victoria Hall at 10:30 am on the first Tuesday (except August). This meeting usually has an invited speaker – whose subject could be just about anything. The subscription for new members for the current year (September 2021 - August 2022) is £10, although individual groups may have additional charges to cover room hire, catering, travel, entrance fees, etc.

Our Village

Situated in North East Hampshire, Hartley Wintney is a rural village with a wealth of history, surrounded by idyllic countryside. With a population of approximately 5000 people, the Parish includes Phoenix Green to the south and the adjoining hamlets of Dipley, West Green, Elvetham and Hartfordbridge. The Parish includes large wooded areas such as Yateley Heath Wood and part of Hazeley Heath as well as large expanses of common land with the famous Mildmay Oaks at its centre. The River Hart flows to the north-east of the village with the River Whitewater forming the western parish boundary.

The u3a Story

Founded 40 years ago this year, the UK u3a movement (based loosely on the French model) aims to encourage groups of people in their third age to come together and continue their enjoyment of learning in subjects of interest to them.

From the start, the guiding principles were to promote lifelong learning through self-help interest groups covering a wide range of topics and activities as chosen by their members.

The 'third age' is defined by a time in your life (not necessarily chronological) where you have the opportunity to undertake learning for its own sake. There is no minimum age, but a focus on people who are no longer in full-time employment or raising a family.

Our founders envisaged a collaborative approach with peers learning from each other. The u3a movement was to be self-funded, with members not working towards qualifications but learning purely for pleasure. There would be no distinction between the learners and the teachers – everyone could take a turn at being both if they wished.

From its beginnings in 1981, the movement grew very quickly and by the early 1990s, a u3a was opening every fortnight. u3as grew in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and in 2008 membership was increasing by 11% every year. 2010 saw our membership hitting the quarter million mark.

At the end of 2016 the u3a movement reached the milestone of 1,000 u3as celebrated by a conference with speakers including Eric Midwinter – one of the founders of the u3a movement.

Today, our movement includes over 450,000 u3a members in more than 1,000 u3as and is continuing to grow every day.