Hello and welcome

The U3A is a national organisation bringing educational and social opportunities to people no longer in full-time work. It creates an environment where we can share the knowledge that we have acquired during our lives or by getting together to try something completely new.

This year Havant U3A celebrates its 10th anniversary. Our monthly Monthly Meetings are held in the Bedhampton Community Centre (formerly Bedhampton Social Social Hall), Bedhampton Road, HAVANT, PO9 3ES on the third Thursday of each month, starting at 2.00pm - free tea and coffee are available. New members are welcome to attend.

Small groups meet during the month to pursue their particular interests or discuss a wide range of subjects; most of the meetings are held in members' homes. These groups are self help and self funding and rely entirely on member participation. See our list of current interest groups on the next page. We are always keen to create new interest groups, if you have some other interest idea that is not catered for. We also organise outings.

Facebook - Calling all members. Just a reminder that our Facebook group page is now live. Just click on the link (top right) and request to join and we will let you in. We will be using this page to keep you informed of our latest news and conversation. See you there!"

Returning to Normality - a message from our Chairman

With the relaxation of Covid restrictions, many of you will have attended monthly meetings at Bedhampton Community Centre in February and March this year.

We were treated to two excellent presentations. In February, we heard from David Gane, who took us through the evolution of man in a talk entitled, “Evolution and Natural Selection: a whistle stop tour through life’s evolution on Earth” and in March we met Terry Smith, himself partially sighted, who spoke about the support offered by “Open Sight”, a charity devoted to helping people with sight loss. He gave us some valuable advice about good eye healthcare and the avoidance of sight loss.

Exbury Gardens

Many of you will be aware that it has been our custom to offer two or even three trips each year. The restrictions imposed as a result of Covid curtailed these activities for some months, but I am pleased to say that Val Worthington has arranged a coach trip to Exbury Gardens on Wednesday 11th May to see the world-famous collection of rhododendrons and azaleas, which are at their best at this time of year. It is proposed that we should meet the coach at Market Parade, Havant, and elsewhere from 9.15am and leave Exbury by 4:00pm. So far twenty nine members have expressed a desire to take part, but we need more to fill the coach and reduce the cost.

The cost will be £31.00 each if only thirty members participate, but this will fall to £26.00 if thirty nine members participate. If we find that less than thirty members wish to join, then regrettably the trip will be cancelled. As you will know, transport costs have risen significantly, and may rise further, and so this is good value. The price includes the cost of admission and an introductory talk, but you will have to provide your own food, or buy it there. If you would like to join the trip, please contact Val Worthington on 07359 146372 or valatthecottage@aol.com

New Activity Groups

You will be pleased to hear that we have two new groups in the process of formation:

Art: Nigel Gossop has agreed to lead a new Art Group, which he is calling: “Learning by Art”. The group will meet at The Spring Arts Centre on the first Friday of every month from 10:00am until noon with the first meeting planned for Friday 6th May.

The group aims to offer the opportunity to learn from each other through discussion, sharing ideas and skills, whatever your preferred art medium. Such was the enthusiasm for the group, that all places on offer were immediately filled, but as always there is the prospect that not all of those who were minded to join may be able to take up the commitment and so if you are interested, please contact Nigel on 02392 375594 or westermanyarns@gmail.com and you may be lucky.

Singing: Havant U3A have enjoyed the benefit of a singing group from time to time, the last group killed off by Covid. Now, I am happy to announce that a fresh group is being formed under the leadership of Terri Freeman and Louisa Niland. The group plans to meet at Bedhampton Community Centre every first and third Tuesday for 1.5 to 2 hours, between 1.00 and 4.00 pm, final timing to be confirmed. If you are interested, please contact Terri Freeman at tf.ladybirde@gmail.com or Louisa Niland at louisa.niland@virginmedia.com. If you do not have the internet or you wish to discuss the matter, please give Bob Child, our Groups co-ordinator, a ring on 07711 734560.

Strollers: Given the known benefits of exercise, now that the warmer weather has arrived, we are hoping to begin a Strollers group for those who are less athletic than they were in former times. Whilst we have an exceptionally active walking group, it may be that the demands of this group are beyond the reach of some who would prefer a more leisurely form of physical activity. Peter Newman, who leads our walking group, would be happy to offer advice in setting up a Strollers group. If anyone would like to lead such a group, please contact Bob Child 07711 734560.

Further New Groups?

If any member has ideas for setting up and leading a fresh group, please contact Bob Child at robert.child@sky.com

The next Monthly Meeting will be at Bedhampton Community Centre on Thursday 21st April when Andy Thomas will tell us about the “Conspiracy History of the World”. This sounds an intriguing title, but we must await Elizabeth’s circular a few days before the meeting to find out more.

Best wishes,

John West (Chairman)

Havant U3A is registered as a charity and the Registered Charity Number is 1188205