Petersfield U3A Events

Petersfield U3A organises a range of events including three monthly meetings, trips, day workshops, study visits and occasionally two or three day residential breaks. These are open to all members (subject to space available) and may be organised by the main Committee or by one of the subject groups.

Monthly Meetings
There are three monthly meetings all held in the Petersfield Community Centre.

The Main General Meeting is held on the second Monday of every month between 2.30 and 4.00 p.m. with a different speaker talking about a general subject of interest each time.

These meetings are the flagship events for Petersfield U3A. They are held in the extended large hall at the Community Centre on the second Monday of each month (except for August and December). The topics are varied and are intended to be of general interest to all of our members. They commence with a welcome by the Branch Chairman and they conclude with tea / coffee and biscuits whilst members enjoy a convivial chat with the speaker, committee members and their fellow members and friends. The presentation normally lasts for approx. an hour with up to 30 minutes of comments and discussions.

U3A activities are mentioned and some Group Leaders have tables at the back of the hall for Group Business. At the back also are tables for discussions with new members and for recruitment and renewal of membership. Copies of the latest News and Views are available for members to take home, if they are not able to receive it by e-mail.

These meetings are seen as being of special interest due to the greater numbers who attend and the possibilities of socialising and carrying out Branch Business.

The Arts and Heritage meeting is open to all members on the third Wednesday of every month 2.30 – 4.00 p.m. and there is a charge of £2.50 per meeting. Each meeting has a speaker who is well qualified in a subject relating to the arts or a heritage topic. Occasionally talks are linked with visits to local sites or exhibitions. Please note that the meetings originally programmed for September and November 2019 have had to be swapped over, due to changes in speaker availability. Those now shown in the programme are the correct entries.

The Science and Technology meeting is open to all members and is held on the fourth Tuesday of every month from 2.00 to 3.30 p.m. with a charge of £2.50. per meeting. We invite speakers on a range of subjects to give a talk followed by questions, discussion and debate. The 2019 programme of meetings is still being formulated and will include a wide variety and type of topic. The Science Forum is an offshoot of this Group and offers informal learning and discussion on a topic of the day. These meetings are held at the Liss Triangle on a monthly basis.

Other Events

There is a regular series of other events ranging from theatre and concert trips, heritage visits, and special interest sessions organised through individual groups but open to everybody. Other one day subject sessions, short courses and occasional social events are held and publicised on this website and members can receive a regular updating “News & Views Extra” email to keep you in touch.

South Bank Group The Group organises visits to the Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, The Purcell Room and The Hayward Gallery, travelling by train to Waterloo. Availability of tickets and further information may be obtained from Derek Bowtell by contacting him via the South Bank Group page.

(See below for details of the upcoming meetings and events)

Past Meetings

Click the link above to see descriptions of our last few meetings for Arts & Heritage and Science & Technology

Dates for your Diary
April 2019
Tue Apr 23rdScience and TechnologyGenetically Modified Crops and Europe - Euro sclerosis or intelligent precautionary principle? - With John Pidgeon, a retired agricultural scientist and former director of a BBSRC Research Institute.

Dr John Pidgeon led the scientific team that produced perhaps the first evidence anywhere that, properly managed, a GM herbicide tolerant crop could be better environmentally than the same conventional non GM crop. This generated much controversy. John will briefly review this field experimental work, and consider how and why emotionalism triumphed over reason at the turn of the century and thereafter - the onset of the age of un-enlightenment. Specialist molecular biology knowledge is not needed, and John hopes the discussion will generate more light than heat.
Thu Apr 25thCycling for FunRide 21m Rating 2/3 Micheldever to Longparish and return
Fri Apr 26thSouth Bank Group7.30pm Royal Festival Hall
Philharmonia Orchestra and City of London Choir
The Lark Ascending
Join Alan Titchmarsh as he hosts an exquisite programme of great English classics by Walton, Butterworth, Elgar, Holst, Delius, Handel, Rutter and Vaughan Williams.
May 2019
Wed May 1stJazz AppreciationA Summer Jazz Journey – Andy Borthwick

With the winter safely behind us a chance to look forward to some sunshine, warmth and visits to favourite places. And what to listen to whilst on your journey or whilst lazing on a sun lounger? Andy has selected a collection of jazz to keep you company together with some background about the tunes and performers – some the usual suspects but others not so well known.
Thu May 2ndCycling for FunRide 20m Rating 3 Petersfield to Hambledon and return
Fri May 10thCycling for FunRide 24m Rating 3 Lake Petersfield to Stanstead House and return
Mon May 13thMeetingAndy Thomas - “ Unexplained Mysteries and Cover Ups”.

Andy is an experienced Speaker and Author on Intrigues, unexplained mysteries and the Paranormal . He has investigated many enduring areas of fascination. This talk will cover Ghosts, Ancient Rituals and Classic Conspiracy theories as well as the background to many famous English folklore rituals.
Mon May 13thCycling for FunRide 15-20m Rating 3 Lake CP Petersfield to South Harting and return
Tue May 14thFamily History 2Helen Whittle: The Civil War and the Interregnum in genealogical records.
Wed May 15thArts and HeritageJonathon Jones - “The Life and Poetry of Emily Bronte”

Jonathon has visited us several times and is always most interesting. This talk will cover the life of Emily Bronte and touching on her novels which are well known, but her poetry less so, and this talk will give an insight into this aspect.
Wed May 15thScience ForumGround Effect Vehicles - A discussion with some videos and slides of Ground Effect Vehicles (GEVs,) also called Wing in Ground Effect aircraft (WIGs). These are like aircraft that skim across the top of the ground, ice or water. We can look at some of the history, such as that of the Caspian Sea Monster, then briefly describe the aerodynamics, followed by a look at more modern craft and some possible future developments. Time 1400 hrs at the Liss Triangle Centre. Coffee available.
Thu May 16thSouth Bank Group7.30pm Royal Festival Hall
Philharmonia Orchestra
Schubert Symphony No. 8 (Unfinished)
Mendelssohn Violin Concerto
Brahms Symphony No. 3
Thu May 23rdCycling for FunRide 15m Rating 2/3 Petersfield TBA
Tue May 28thScience and TechnologyAndrew Ryder ex Environment Lecturer at Portsmouth University - "Climate Change - Disasters and Coping with them"
Thu May 30thCycling for FunRide 13 Rating 1/2 Iping Common to Easebourne and return. Alternative 29 mile Grade 4 from Petersfield available
June 2019
Wed Jun 5thJazz AppreciationJazz a la carte – Derek Bowtell

Do you know what a cymbalon is? Or should it be cimbalom? Come and find out. A chance to listen to a variety of jazz pieces using unusual instruments. Why just stick to the usual clarinet, trumpet, base, sax, etc. when there are a range of other options? Jugs and bassoon both feature along with the cymbalon (or cimbalom) and other instruments. Another fascinating view of the wonderful musical world of jazz.
Mon Jun 10thMeetingRichard Poad “Grandma Flew Spitfires” .

Richard is an authority on Air Transport Auxiliary and knew many flying veterans, so his talk is of a personal nature, illustrated with newsreel and archive films. This will cover the forgotten stories of WW2, of courage, skill and sacrifice of both female and male pilots, flying without the technical devices we commonly use today.
Tue Jun 11thFamily History 2

Visit: details tba.
Suggestions include: London Metropolitan Archives, the Guildford Spike [restored workhouse vagrant's ward]

Thu Jun 13thSouth Bank Group7.30pm Queen Elizabeth Hall
Chineké! Orchestra
Grieg Peer Gynt Suite No.1
Stewart Goodyear Callaloo-Caribbean Suite for piano & orchestra
Dvoråk Symphony No.7
Wed Jun 19thArts and HeritageNote: Change of event.
Alan Saunders on "The Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard". Alan has been a member of the Queen's Body Guard since 2003, but the guards actually date back from 1485. The head of the Queen's bodyguard is now a political appointment. Many famous people were in the Monarch's bodyguard in the past including Walter Raleigh and Thomas Percy so I think we are going to have a fascinating afternoon with Alan who has stepped in to cover for the original speaker who has had to withdraw through illness.
Tue Jun 25thScience and TechnologySara Langston of Southern Health NHS - A presentation on "Controlling anxiety and worry". How stress affects us physically and mentally. Relaxation skills and other practical ways to manage it.
July 2019
Wed Jul 3rdJazz AppreciationPeter’s Two-Part Thing – Peter Lindon

A session of two halves! The first part will be an introduction to Cuban music – with its colourfulness and rhythms. All put into context by a few chosen anecdotes about Peter’s recent visit. The second part will be an esoteric selection from Peter’s collection, with jazz tracks from lesser-known modern artists as well as some on the fringes of the jazz scene.
Sat Jul 6thTrips and OutingsSturminster Newton, Boogie Woogie Festival. A day trip with Grey’s Coaches.

If you are a jazz, blues, swing or boogie woogie fan, or, would just like a fun day out in the beautiful setting of this small market town, then this is the trip for you. Cost £23.00pp to be paid at the Grey’s office in town. There are several local pick up points prior to leaving Petersfield at 10.00am arriving back about 8.00pm. This trip will be advertised in Grey’s summer programme at the end of April. However, U3A members are invited to book their required tickets in advance.
Mon Jul 8thMeetingMadeleine Salvetti on “The Planning of D Day Landing & Creation of the Overlord Embroidery”.
This talk covers the planning of the D Day landing and the strategy, and what a huge exercise it was involving many facets which came together like a jigsaw.
The Overlord Embroidery tells the story of the build up of the landing,and the involvement of civilian and military personnel.
Wed Jul 10thArts and HeritageELTHAM PALACE AND GARDENS
Eltham Palace is an intriguing place, some of you may have seen some of it on a recent Antiques Road Show. The original palace was given to Edward II in 1305 by the Bishop of Durham, Anthony Bek and was used as a royal residence from the 14th to the 16th century. It is said that the incident which inspired Edward III’s foundation of the Order of the Garter took place here. Henry VIII grew up here and it was here in 1499 that he met and impressed the scholar, Erasmus. introduced to him by Thomas More.
It has had a very varied history, much of it falling into disrepair until the 1930s when Stephen and Virginia Courtauld acquired the lease of the palace site and restored the Great Hall, while building an elaborate home internally in the Art Deco style.
I think our trip in July promises to be a very good Summer's Day Out.
Details can be found in the booking form, (see Arts& Heritage page), which should be completed and returned to me with your cheque. The cost of the trip is £32 per head, however, if you are an English Heritage Member, or have a National Art Fund pass, you would only need to pay £20 to cover the cost of the coach and Driver’s gratuity.
Joan Shepley
Arts and Heritage Group
Wed Jul 17thArts and HeritageAndy Skinner on “Chalk Figures in England”.
Some years ago Andy did some geophysical work on the Long Man of Wilmington in East Sussex, this started a fascination with the incredible world of chalk cut figures in down land. These embrace such fascinating themes, on identity to religious expressions and even poking fun at the famous.
September 2019
Mon Sep 9thMeetingMalcolm Nelson on “40 years of Catching Smugglers-Part 2 –You're Nicked”
Malcolm gave us a fascinating talk in 2018 and it was requested by many members that he return again, so here we go with Part 2. Drugs having been found, now show the concealments with real life stories behind the pictures.
Tue Sep 10thFamily History 2Chris Lightfoot: writing up your family history
Bringing your family history to life. Getting started - uncovering the stories but who wants to know? How to make it interesting and avoid boring people.
Wed Sep 18thArts and HeritageMark Watts on “The History of Winchester Prison”.
There has been a jail in Winchester since the 13th century at Jewry St (now a pub). The present one built in 1849 in the “Classical Victorian Radial Design”, covers 6 acres of land and has stood punishment, hangings and rehabilitation. Mark joined Winchester Prison in 1988 and retired in 2017 as Head of Security, so will be well qualified to unveil it’s secrets, both dark and humorous.
Tue Sep 24thScience and TechnologyProf. Barnagi - "The Development of Artificial Intelligence and the Support for Health in an Ageing Population". To be confirmed.
October 2019
Tue Oct 8thFamily History 2Topic: On-Line Parish Clerks
The origin and development of OPC projects, including Hampshire; and how they can help our own research
Mon Oct 14thMeetingMalcolm Wells with “So far so good”.
Malcolm has been recommended as a Speaker with a presentation both informative and humorous. It covers his life as an army musician for 24 years, 15 years working with Canine Partners and lastly an insight into the experience of receiving the MBE at Buckingham Palace.
Wed Oct 16thArts and HeritageAlexandra Loske on "Chinoiserie. Alexandra returns once again, this time to talk about the decorations every grand home in mid 18th century had, inspired by the Far East, predominantly China. This lecture (always beautifully illustrated) will explain the origins, with particular focus on various East India Companies around the year 1600.
Tue Oct 22ndScience and TechnologyKeith Betton - "Hampshire's Special Birds".
November 2019
Mon Nov 11thMeetingColin van Geffen on “Lawrence before and after Arabia”
The legend of Lawrence of Arabia is well documented, but what of his life before the Desert War? Described as one of the most influential Englishmen of the 20th century, but he wasn’t even English! There are many myths, but the truth is far more fascinating.
Tue Nov 12thFamily History 2Topic: Ireland and Irish records, using Genuki records
Format tba
Wed Nov 20thArts and HeritageRyan Watts on “People and Archeology of Petersfield Heath”.
Ryan studied at Exeter University with a keen interest in Prehistoric people of Britain. He now works as Learning & Community Engagement Officer at Petersfield Museum & hopes to expand the museum’s reach to schools, colleges and special interest groups. His talk will cover the Prehistoric Petersfield exploring those who lived here 4000 years ago. There have been exciting discoveries on the Heath over the last 4 years and Ryan will talk about the first people to live here, as well as about the artefacts & monuments left behind.
Tue Nov 26thScience and TechnologyThe Battle of Britain - the making of the movie, with Phil Holt.
December 2019
Tue Dec 10thFamily History 2Mince pies again
Format tba
January 2020
Tue Jan 28thScience and TechnologyProf. McGeehan of Portsmouth University - "Plastic Eating Bacteria / Enzymes".
March 2020
Tue Mar 24thScience and TechnologyControlling 911 with Phil Holt