A Newsletter is published 3 times a year and sent to all members. To see more details, please click on the link on the right. This contains information about activities both past and to come and information on how to contact Group Leaders. Photographs of and information about past events can be accessed by clicking the links on the right.


The Projectors and laptop will be looked after by Stella Watts until further notice as Jane will be indisposed. Stella’s phone number is 01604 409071 or she can be contacted by email by clicking the link on the top right.

‘Hard of Hearing’ LOOP SYSTEM for groups

We now have an easy to use, portable induction loop system available for groups to use - just plug it in and it is ready to use, with no trailing wires. Please contact Eileen Brown on 01604 407205 or via the link on the right, if you would like to collect it for use by your group.


(NEWS Update}
(17th April}

The Annual General Meeting has been postponed until August when we hope that the lock down rules will allow us to meet.

Theatre Visits to Milton Keynes theatre can still be booked for the following shows, but the settlement date has been extended until June. Click the Theatre Visits link for more details.

Sunny AfternoonWednesday 2nd September, 2020. 2.30pm
DreamgirlsThursday 15th October, 2020. 2.30pm
English National Ballet - RaymondaThursday 29th October, 2020. 2.00pm
Matthew Bourne’s NutcrackerThursday 4th February, 2021. 2.00pm


Latest Advice - Coronavirus for U3A Northampton

17 March 2020

Following the latest advice coming from the government and decisions made by the Northampton U3A Committee yesterday, March and April General Meetings and coach trips to Cambridge and Snowhill Manor are cancelled; but the later one to Sandringham remains open at present. There will be an additional email to those expecting to go on these trips in due course.

The Tea Dance scheduled for April 29th is also cancelled. If you have purchased tickets for the Tea Dance, please return them to Kath Bottwood at 32 Southfields Road, Duston, Northampton NN5 6HN. Please include your bank details, sort code, a/c number and the account name and a full refund will be credited to your account. If you would prefer a cheque to cover the amount, please state who the payee is and include a stamped self-addressed envelope.

For theatre bookings that we have already paid for, we could not cancel now otherwise the loss would be ours; we must wait to see what the theatres do and, if performances are cancelled, we can seek a refund. The performances affected in this way are Strictly Ballroom (21st Oct) and My Best Friend’s Wedding (18th Nov). Bookings for other performances as shown in the newsletter and website will still be taken, but not confirmed until the end of April at the earliest. At that time, if they are cancelled, cheques etc will not be banked; and monies will be returned.

It is worth reiterating what is on the National U3A Website for your general guidance and that you consider signing up to the U3A National Newsletter which is available to all U3A members.

Quotes from Third Age Trust CEO Sam Mauger and Chair Ian McCannah,
“Thank you to all U3As for your support …
We continue to follow the government and NHS advice on coronavirus. As of 16th March, that advice has changed.

The advice is that from now on everyone should stop non-essential contact with others and adopt social distancing. People in ‘at risk groups’ are to be shielded from social contact for 12 weeks. People who should take particular care to minimise social contact are, among others, people over the age of 70 …
We intend to issue regular bulletins – so please keep checking the website. We will put out regular mailings to committees. We will also keep in touch through the national newsletter and newsletter express, where appropriate.

We would encourage all your U3A colleagues and members to sign up directly to the national newsletter on the National U3A website. The national newsletter will allow us to disseminate advice and information quickly to all U3A members.

U3A is an amazing community and we want to encourage members to share their creativity and ideas with us to help support each other over the coming months, and in particular those who will be facing increased isolation and loneliness."

If you have any queries please email Alan Harris or Steve Brame by clicking the link on the top right.
Please endeavour to stay healthy during the coming months; keep in touch with your groups or ‘phone a friend’. This could be for any reason which causes you concern, or just for a chat. I find that all phone calls are tending to be longer just because we need some sort of social contact.

Alan Harris and Steve Brame, for Northampton U3A committee


Do you enjoy going on coach trips to interesting places?
The leaders planning the trips need others to join them to provide new ideas and help arrange the trips. See Trips (by Coach) page for more details or speak to Sue Rowe at the General Meeting.


Gevase Finn talk rescheduled

The Northants U3A Network talk by Gervase Phinn, the fascinating Yorkshire school inspector has been rescheduled to Friday 23rd October. Same venue and same time. The tickets which have already been issued remain valid.

Details are on the poster, which you can see by clicking the link. He is a very popular entertaining speaker and booking early is essential if you want to come. Click here for the G Phinn booking form.

The East Midlands Region of U3A has announced a conference on 21st April 2020 on Making a Difference, which any U3A member can attend. See the Conference 2020 poster for details.
Information on how to book a place will be sent out in the new year.


New social events have been announced. See Social page for details about how to get your tickets.


A new Finance Policy has been published in July 2019 and be viewed on the Committee page. This is particularly important for groups who use rented premises or organise outings or events to be paid for in advance.


The Ultimate Outdoors 15% Discount Scheme is back! Click the link for details.



Membership is changing! During this year Northampton U3A signed up to the Beacon system of membership management. Since the 1st July we have been using this system live, and your details are now held securely centrally. On renewal, you will get a new card (colour-coded) AND you will keep the last four digits of your present number. This last is something a lot of members have wished for.

We’ve included the membership renewal form again in this Newsletter because many of you found it helpful, as did we, not having to wait until the March issue. It will also be available to download from the website from mid-January 2020. Renewals, due 1st April, will be accepted at the general meetings from January onwards.

Please read the form carefully and make sure that you have answered both questions and ticked the boxes you wish to tick. Note that there is now space for your mobile telephone number and for emergency contact details which were never previously held centrally, but which your group leader(s) always asked for.

If you are a taxpayer and would like to provide a Gift Aid authority not having previously done so, please download the form from our website, or ask the membership secretary or treasurer.

Tom Keyes is taking over from me as membership secretary from the end of this month and I wish him all the best. I have enjoyed my time doing the work and thank all of you for helping me in what is a busy role. I know Tom will similarly appreciate your continued help.

You can send the completed form with payment and a stamped self - addressed envelope to Tom from mid-January onwards. Please use the Membership Renewal form 2020 for postal or personal renewals at the general meetings. Come with your form and cheque ready completed, saving paper and time and speeding up the queue!



We are planning a U3A holiday for next year to Newquay, Cornwall; holiday details and booking form can be viewed/downloaded by clicking this link.

As the deadline for booking is quite tight, we are emailing this information and have sent letters to members who are not on email. A booking form is also included in the newsletter available on 26th November, at the general meeting.

Please complete the booking form and return it to Jackie Brame together with a cheque for the deposit if you wish to be included. There are a limited number of places, so please reply as soon as possible and no later than 5th December.


Can you help

Committee Advert We need additional help on the Committee and at Meetings and Events. Please talk to a committee member if you are willing to help.



May I remind you about Gift Aid ?
If you are a UK taxpayer and register with us for Gift Aid, we are able to claim back 25% of your contribution. For full paying members, this amounts to £5 per person and makes a substantial contribution to our income.

This year we have made some grants available to individual groups from our Gift Aid budget and hope to continue to do so next year.

When you first joined U3A, you would have been sent a Gift Aid form to complete and return if you wanted to help us with this contribution. If you are in any doubt as to whether you have registered with us for Gift Aid, please do not hesitate to contact me.

You can find a reference to Gift Aid on the CONTACT page. When you renew your subscription for April 2019/March 2020, you will be asked to tick the box for Gift Aid contributions to confirm you are still eligible to register for Gift Aid contributions.  We have added this to comply with GDPR regulations.

Similarly, if you are no longer a taxpayer, but are registered for Gift Aid, please let me know, as I shall need to take you off the list.

Kath Bottwood (Treasurer)



The new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) are now reflected in our forms for joining and renewing membership. We also have in place Privacy and Data Protection Policies. Click the the links to access the documents. It is recommended that all our members read them.



There is some money available from Gift Aid, to help groups improve the content of their meetings. There may be some equipment you feel would enhance the quality of your learning, and, if this is the case, please apply in writing to me. Your request will then be taken to the Committee for their approval.

Marie Catling

Do you do outdoor activities and would like to benefit from the discounts available for U3A members at Ultimate Outdoors at Riverside? If you are interested, please see the Walking Groups page for more details.


The Big Sing

Due to the success of the Singing for Fun group, we will no longer be able to host Big Sings as our regular monthly attendance is such that the capacity of the hall (80 sitting) will not accommodate many extra singers.

If the membership drops we will of course review the situation.


Northampton U3A have been approached to provide volunteers to help children to read, by Beanstalk, and a number of members have shown interest. MORE VOLUNTEERS are needed to help local children for a few hours a week.

More details about Beanstalk can be obtained by clicking on the link or contacting the Beanstalk NORTHAMPTON OFFICE Tel: 01604 720969 or emailing Jo Burns by clicking the link on the right.


Our Current Membership is 1127 members.


Group News is published each month and the latest one can be accessed by clicking the link on the right. This provides information on Planned and Existing Groups. See also New Groups for details of relatively newly formed groups.

Please send your pictures taken at any functions, events and group meetings, in jpeg format (.jpg) to the Webmaster using the 'CONTACT' page.