South West U3A Region


New U3A Chudleigh & District
On 20th April Marion Clemens and I met up in Chudleigh, Devon to try out a cold start up! I had completed half of my training for starting new U3As and Marion is both wise and experienced, so I was looking forward to the day. First stop, a coffee in a wonderful community hub establishment, where we met lots of helpful people and were given sound advice and suggestions. We booked the Town Hall for the launch, ordered the publicity materials from National office and went home happy.

The Launch in May was a truly best of U3A affair with Ashburton, Teign ,Exeter, Exmouth, Paignton and Torbay U3As turning up to support us, and to welcome the 60 plus people from Chudleigh to U3A. A steering committee was enlisted and the pre- launch planning meeting was put in our diaries. There followed a very busy few weeks, and on 11th July the launch meeting was held. Around 60 people, not all the same ones as before, paid their membership and now Chudleigh & District are the 1021st U3A.
Frances Berry, Regional Volunteer.

National Workshops
At the Devon link meeting on 30th April, there was enthusiasm for the National Office Workshop Keeping it Legal, to be held in our county. Sophie Wellings the Advice and Volunteering manager was very helpful and in a short time she had, with help from the team, found a venue and date.
I also found through my links with U3As that there was support for an Interest Groups Matter workshop. Again Sophie Wellings has arranged for this to take place locally.
Keeping it legal at The Devon Hotel Exeter on 21st August (sold out) Interest groups matter at The Devon Hotel on 20th September
Frances Berry
Devon link representative

Jill's Visit to Guernsey
May has been very busy and I apologise for not getting to this sooner. I’ve visited some of your meetings, but there are still some of you I would like to meet, particularly in the SE part of our region.
Pam Jones, National chairman, and I visited Guernsey for their AGM at the end of the month. They are only two years old and already have 700 members! We were welcomed to the meeting by a combined musical entertainment of their ukulele band and the choir performing some old favourites. Their displays were inspirational - who’d have thought you could have such fun with scrap metal! The sewing group had collectively created a wall hanging of the island’s Little Chapel.
These visits always spark ideas off in my brain and trips to Wales and Guernsey have got me thinking about a project for the whole region. As I said at the presentation I did in North Somerset we have a very diverse region and one end probably doesn’t know much about the other end.

Can we draw upon our talents to explore and share the aspects of our areas that are special? I would like to include photographs, writing, sewing, music, paintings and drawings and others you may come up with. It will be a means to include our more remote members in a big community effort.
This cannot be a one woman task so I’ll be asking for help via our Regional volunteers ( not for you to do the work, but make recommendations). I’ll leave it at that for now and hope for some responses.
Have a lovely June

Frances Berry Devon link representative, has the latest information about Insurance, GDPR, Safeguarding and Equality Diversity and Inclusivity. See the link "Keeping it Legal" for the detail.

Research into Life Long Learning#
Sam Mauger is organising focus groups for the research into the impact of the U3A.

Honiton U3A Current Affairs group visit the Houses of Parliament
15 members of the group visited the Houses of Parliament, were given a tour and then listened to a debate from the public gallery. See Honiton Visit to the House of Commons
Members of Honiton U3A have just finished the online course called 'Beyond the Ballot' which was a very interesting course on Women's suffrage from 1866 to the present day.We would be very interested to follow this up & were wondering if any other U3A's in the South West have met to discuss the course & taken it a step further with extra research, articles,or anything that would give us some ideas to base our project on.
Looking forward to hearing from you,
June Brown

October saw Honiton U3A host their first ever ‘Study Day – Aspects of Devon History’. see link.

Click on a picture below to see it full-size with more details.