AGM 2020 Report from New Chairman


Welcome to Newquay-u3a-in-lockdown!

My name is John Woodason and I was voted in, subject to ratification, as Chairman of Newquay u3a at our delayed-AGM held in October 2020. The delay was due, of course, to the existing pandemic that interrupted all our lives. Consequently the AGM was held online and proved to be non-quorate. The decisions made at the AGM will have to be ratified at a further general meeting, where the quorum will be whoever turns up!

We are living in interesting times, to say the least.

One day we will look back on this once-in-a-lifetime event and remember it as a weird dream. But the current reality is quite stark. I write this from my home where I am not permitted for anyone else to enter other than the person I live with – my wife Gret, who happens to be the recent outgoing Chairman. If someone had said that would be our personal circumstance 9 months ago I’d have said they were victims of yet another wild conspiracy theory and must therefore be slightly unhinged.

A few of our Newquay u3a members, primarily a group of creatives, led by our website co-ordinator Valerie and assisted by our previous groups co-ordinator David, quickly embraced the restrictions lockdown brought with it, and birthed the Virtual Newquay u3a blog. Please go and have a look now! Their output was and is prodigious. Walking blogs, music appreciation of all genres, creative writing including memoirs and poetry, quizzes, and so on are there. Even a horse racing betting game. The daily postings are many and various. For some of our members and also a number of visitors it has been a great source of interest, entertainment and a reason for much creative output. Thank you, and well done, Valerie, David and all the other contributors.

Before lockdown I’d never heard of Zoom.

Zoom came looking for me. A number of other organisations I belong to, took to it for seminars, group meetings, committee meetings, general meetings, discussions and suchlike. Personally I’ve become a Zoom-fan and the recently outgoing and newly incoming Newquay u3a committees have used it to continue that aspect of our life together.

I am so grateful that over three quarters of last year’s membership decided to renew their subscription, doing so while knowingly entering into lockdown. I take their membership as a statement of faith and trust both in the committee and also in the future.

In the meanwhile do have a look around Virtual Newquay u3a if you haven’t done so already. Be on the lookout for Zoom-based opportunities to be with other members as we share common interests. It is truly amazing how easy Zoom is to use and how interactive it is.

I trust that as you read this you are able to more than endure the current restrictions. And maybe find ways to flourish within them. My hope is that, for many, Newquay-u3a-in-lockdown may be a component in helping you to flourish, as we all patiently await the arrival of a new-normal bringing with it meaningful participation in ‘live’ Newquay u3a activity.

Please continue to take care.


John Woodason
Chairman, Newquay u3a
17 November 2020