Future Discovering Britain ‘Zoom’ Meetings:
October 23rd will feature Richard and Eileen Hart, who will talk about the North coast of Devon and Somerset.
November 28th Sonia and Paul Jackson will present 'Wild life and National Trust gardens in Cornwall'.
There will be no meeting in December as the fourth Friday is Christmas Day (not that we’re likely to be doing anything else at this rate!)
If any U3A members would like to join us for Discovering Britain, either as a guest or as a group member, please contact either Shirley or Andrea and we will happily send you the login details.
Stay safe everyone!
Andrea and Shirley
29th Sept 2020 On September the 25th 24 of us were informed and entertained with a Zoom presentation by Bob and Cath Price. They were revisiting a trip they took 10years ago to the Orkneys and the Hebrides. With their extensive collection of photos taken at the time they were able to guide us through some of the many attractions ‘up’ in that part of our country. It isn’t easy to get there from here! (If not on a package tour). Either a long drive up to one of the ports in Scotland or by flying to Aberdeen and then using a mixture of hire car, cruise ship and local ferries, with rented properties along the way, as Bob and Cath did.
The highlights for me were the wonderful scenery and the Stone Age remnants from as long ago as 4500 years. In Jarlshof in the1890 a storm revealed circular Stone Age houses which had been continuously lived in for over 1000 years. Our ancient ancestors lived by fishing and agriculture, as well as trading with other communities, some as far away as Norway and Brittany. There was evidence of a smithy indicating that this place was in use in the bronze age.
This part of Scotland is renowned for its marvellous wildlife too, with sea eagles and many other types of seabirds, along with seals, passing pods of whales and dolphins and not forgetting the Shetland Ponies, small hardy animals built for the often wild weather. Midges were mentioned as a seasonal nuisance, best to avoid the months from September to Christmas when visiting.
More recent history covers the advent of Christianity from the 1100s. in Kirkwall on Orkney there is a stunning cathedral, with its origins going back to 1137, named after St Magnus. It has lovely carvings and stained glass reflecting that at the time it was started Orkney was part of Norway. This changed when in 1486 it became part of Scotland.
There was so much to see and talk about during this talk that I, for one, was left with a wish to go and see for myself this part of our world with its huge range of Neolithic settlements, marvellous countryside and wealth of history. Many thanks Bob and Cath.
28th August 2020
Today’s Discovering Britain Zoom meeting was generously hosted by Steve and Jane Fisher, so we were not time limited, which was just as well as we had a few technical hitches to negotiate…
However, once sorted, 18 of us thoroughly enjoyed hearing Mike and Jenny Barrett tell us about the millions of years of geological history under our feet, in the form of the Geopark Way, and of the places they had passed through and stayed in as they walked the largest part of this 109 mile trail, which crosses the counties of Shropshire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire, from Bridgnorth to Gloucester. Thank you Mike and Jenny for sharing your knowledge and experience!
Our next session will be on 25th September at 10 am. Details will be emailed nearer the time.
24th July 2020
Zoom was kind to us today and allowed us extra time for our monthly ‘meeting’, when 22 of us ‘met’ to enjoy a very informative presentation from Steve Carter about the Jurassic Coast (which isn’t really, we learned ….) Steve took us on a walk from Charmouth to Golden Cap and shared his fantastic photographic skills to show us this diverse and beautiful coastline, before turning East to Old Harry, via Lulworth Cove and Durdle Dor. We learned about different types of rock and erosion as well as where to find award-winning fish and chips (on the Cobb at Lyme Bay). Thank you Steve for a very entertaining session!
Login details will change for our next session, on the 28th August at 10 am. Steve Fisher has offered to host for us, so we don’t need to be so conscious of a 40 minute time limit. Mike and Jenny Barrett will be our speakers. Details will be sent nearer the time.
If you know of any U3A members who would like to join us for Discovering Britain, either as a guest or as a group member, please ask them to contact either Shirley or Andrea and we will send them the login details.
Look forward to seeing you all in August!
26th June 2020
18 fellow Discoverers ‘met‘ via Zoom on 26th June for our first lockdown meeting, which we are pleased to say went very well. Of course, the social aspect of face to face meetings is impossible to replicate online, but we were still able to chat and enjoy an interesting and informative presentation about Scarborough – the place of Bob Walton’s happy childhood holidays. Thank you Bob for being our guinea pig and negotiating the technology to share photographs, paintings and memories with us.
We also shared our answers to the Cryptic UK Towns and Cities quiz, sent out to members previously. If anyone else is losing sleep over it, email me and I’ll try to put you out of your misery!
We look forward to ‘meeting’ again on 24th July (4th Friday of the month) at 10 am, when Steve Carter has offered to present to us – subject to be decided. The meeting link will be sent out a few days before the event – it will be good to see you!
If anyone would like a practice Zoom session in advance of the next meeting, please contact us via the email icon above.
Andrea and Shirley
We hope you are all keeping safe and well during these extraordinary times …..
Andrea and I met(socially distanced, of course!) and spoke about Discovering Britain. Nobody had any idea that this crisis was going to last so long, and we’d like to try to maintain the interest generated by our first meeting until we can all meet again in person.
With your permission, we would like to contact group members by email once a month. (Being aware that those members who have agreed to pass on information to those without access to email may currently find this difficult – let us know if that is the case and we can arrange to post messages out the old fashioned way!)
So many ideas were generated at our first meeting that we feel sure some of you will have some creative ideas as to how to safely pursue our mutual interest during the current pandemic. We look forward to hearing them and hopefully putting some of them into practice in the coming months.
Our first idea: we have emailed out a quiz to exercise the grey matter. Cryptic clues to towns and cities in the UK. Problem is, we don’t have the answers… There are no prizes, either, so be prepared to fight your corner if your response disagrees with someone else’s! We don’t need to see your answers – we can pick it up when we meet face to face in the future.
If you do not wish to receive a monthly email from Discovering Britain, please let us know and we’ll remove you from the mailing list.
Andrea and Shirley
Do you want to find out more about Britain? Would you like to share what you already know? Maybe enjoy days out and holidays not too far from home? If so, come and join us!
Where: Clee House, Lanescourt Close, Tewkesbury GL20 5JQ
When: 4th Friday of each month, from 10 am till 12 noon
If you think this group may be of interest to you, please contact Andrea on 01684 294676 or Shirley on the email link above right.
A £1.50 fee for each session will cover rent, U3A contribution and refreshments
Discovery: The act of detecting something new or something previously unrecognised as meaningful; to gain knowledge or an awareness of something not known before.
Aims for the group: to further our knowledge of the British Isles / to have some fun!
Our first and only meeting (pre-lockdown)generated lots of ideas, which we condensed down to 6 themes with which to guide the group's direction:
Industry / traditional crafts
History / Sacred sites
Out and about
We hope to be able to further our explorations, albeit in a different format!