Thorpe Bay

The View From The Chair

25/03/2020

The three of us were sitting in Sid’s Café yesterday when Misty suggested that we needed to do something to help with the current crisis. Now, Misty, Combo, and I, Clogg, are all over 75 years old but Misty still insisted that we join the local team providing medical help. Well! You can imagine what sort of difficulties we had.

In a military fashion, he took us to Auntie Bradshaw’s emporium to kit us out with a uniform. If you know Auntie you will know that anything is available there, but at a cost, and true to form she did find something for us. I have no idea why we need three old ARP helmets and “excellent condition” World War Two respirators but they have got to be more sensible than the Hostess Dinner Trolley that Auntie sold us to carry our equipment on.

In a short time that seemed just like a change of scene in a film we were back outside Sid’s. As you can imagine, when Jasmine saw the heated trolley, she thought we were complaining about the temperature of the food she served and unceremoniously flung us out onto the square.

The training for volunteers was in a village hall a sort distance across the moor and we had only one way of getting there, the trusty Land Rover driven by Edison. Combo and the Hostess trolley went on the flat bed at the back and Misty and I sat in the passenger seat. The journey sort of went OK for about half the distance then with a loud bang the engine ceased to be, and we were left stranded outside a convivial hostelry. Need I say more? After several pints of the landlord’s best falling down water three of us climbed to a comfortable spot overlooking the town while Edison used a large wrench to tinker with his beautiful piece of engineering.

We never did get to help with the emergency and the helmets and Hostess trolley are lying somewhere on the top of the moor.

23/03/2020

Good Morning Campers!

HI DI HI!

Just a reminder to all of you out there that we have had to cancel our Knobbly Knees Contest by the Costa del Sol Pool opposite the Donkey Derby Track this afternoon due to the lack of Knobbly Knees in the Camp.

In addition, Ernesto will not be able to serve his famous Cottage Pie in the Dining Hall today and his Jelly Trifle will not be available for the foreseeable future as someone put all of the Jelly Powder into the Costa del Sol Pool.

This evenings entertainment was due to be your Camp Green Coats on the stage of the Palais Ballroom with the master of ceremonies Jovial Jaccky Jetson. However, since all of the Green Coats were in the Costa del Sol Pool last night when the Jelly Powder was poured in, they are all unable to be in the Palais Ballroom until we have freed them.

So, tonight we urge you all to stay in your Deluxe Chalets and listen to a recording of last years final of the Sunshine Golden Prunes Talent Competition. The winner has let us know that they are still enjoying their year's supply of Sunshine Golden Prunes and expect to be able to visit us again at the end of the year, if they can find some more toilet paper before then.

TTFN

19/03/2020

Following our earlier decision to cancel the Monthly Meeting due to be held on Friday March 20th we have now also taken the decision to CANCEL THE MEETINGS SCHEDULED FOR FRIDAY APRIL 17TH AND FRIDAY MAY 15TH.

We hope to have the Speakers, Sherlock Holmes, Tim Moorey and Mark Smith, visit us at a later date, once everything is back to normal.

Changes to the June and July meetings will be announced once we have sufficient information to make a rational and reasoned decision.

Our guidance for the Interest Groups is as follows.

We are not instructing Group Leaders to cancel the meetings of their Interest Groups. There is, at present, no guidance from National Office or Government to restrict small gatherings. The decision to cancel an Interest Group Meeting is with, first, the Group Leader and, second, the members of the Group. If you are asked by a Group Leader not to attend a meeting please accept their decision.

Please remember that if you have signs of an infection, or you are in a high-risk group due to poor immune system or treatment for other problems, you should self-isolate and not attend any of your regular meetings.

Due to the changing advice from Government we may amend these measures without notice.

During the current medical situation we may be asked to cancel all meetings. This is not required at present and is unlikely to happen but may occur in the next month or two. Check back here for any updates.

To Group Leaders - If you are uneasy about placing yourself and your group members in a position of risk then you have our full support to cancel the meeting if you wish. We, the Committee, will back you irrespective of the location where you normally meet, your home or a booked venue. If you have to pay for a room that you do not use please contact the Committee to discuss the problem.

To U3A members - If you feel unwell please remain at home and follow the Government advice. Phone 111 or Contact 111.nhs.uk for further information. Do not attend your Doctors surgery.
If you are worried about catching any infection or you feel that you are in a high risk group then contact the leaders of any group you would have been attending and let them know that you will not be present.
You may be contacted by a Group Leader who is cancelling a meeting. They have the full support of the Committee to do so and we ask that you accept their decision.

Due to the speed of change of circumstances we will not be able to send advice by the postal services.

There is little risk, at present, of infection by COVID-19 in this area but we suggest you practice the Government's suggestions for handwashing as this will also cut down the risk of contracting any of the other seasonal illnesses.

If you wish to see the U3A National Office's statement please click on the "COVID-19" link on this page. The message will also give you a link to the .gov.uk website for the up to date recommendations.

16/03/2020

MARCH GENERAL MEETING CANCELLED

Following the Committee Meeting this afternoon it has been decided that we should cancel the General Meeting on Friday.

We decided that the turnout may have been very low and also that we shouldn't expose our members to unnecessary risk. So, unfortunately, there will be no Speaker or Meeting this month. We hope to arrange for a visit on an alternative date from Sherlock Holmes sometime in 2021.

At present we have not taken a decision on whether to continue with the April Meeting, we will let you all know when we have heard all of the Government's statements and when we have a feed back from you all.

We are not yet going to dictate to Group Leaders about their Interest Groups. The decision for the Group meetings is with the individual Group Leaders and the members of their Groups. Please accept that some Groups may not go ahead if the Leaders feel that they are in an "At Risk" category.

15/03/2020

Up-date on the current situation

To Group Leaders - If you are uneasy about placing yourself and your group members in a position of risk then you have our full support to cancel the meeting if you wish. We, the Committee, will back you irrespective of the location where you normally meet, your home or a booked venue. If you have to pay for a room that you do not use please contact the Committee to discuss the problem.

To U3A members - If you feel unwell please remain at home and follow the Government advice. Phone 111 or Contact 111.nhs.uk for further information. Do not attend your Doctors surgery.

If you are worried about catching any infection or you feel that you are in a high risk group then contact the leaders of any group you would have been attending and let them know that you will not be present.
You may be contacted by a Group Leader who is cancelling a meeting. They have the full support of the Committee to do so and we ask that you accept their decision.

There is a Committee Meeting on the afternoon of Monday 16th March. If there is any change in our advice it will be communicated here, and by all methods available to us. Due to the speed of change of circumstances we will not be able to send advice by the postal services.

08/03/2020

"May you live in interesting times" is allegedly a form of threat or curse used in China, but is more likely a 19th Century invention of Joseph Chamberlain who came from Camberwell and was later resident in Birmingham. He was father of the Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain.
Well, we certainly are living in interesting times with an on-going medical situation that, if you believe the Red-Top Newspapers, could close the Country down.

So to give you something to look forward to I have a list of newly announced events occurring in your U3A.

This month's Speaker on Friday, 20th March will be Sherlock Holmes (Yes, really!) who will be explaining why he knows who Jack the Ripper was. He may also tell us the name of Whitechapel's most infamous resident.

Next month, we have the return of Mark Smith on Friday, 17th April. He will be continuing the story of the Victoria Cross.

Wednesday, June 3rd is National U3A Day and we intend to join in with a number of other local U3As to raise the profile of the U3A whilst clearing some or all the rubbish from Joscelyn Beach in Chalkwell. Once we are exhausted by our labours, we will crack open a bottle of Bubbly (fizzy pop of course, but not Corona!) and have a picnic to celebrate. We haven’t yet worked out what to do if it is raining but maybe some of you will have ideas for that.

Tuesday, June 30th at Shoeburyness and Thorpe Bay Baptist Church, we are having a special concert. We will have 200 tickets on sale from next month, at just £1.00 each. The programme will include performances from some of your very own performers. Including a Ukulele Ensemble, the Guitar Band, the Play-Reading group, the Tap-Dancing group, and more.

Friday, December 11th sees a return to our monthly meeting by The Music Man Project. These young performers were warmly welcomed by you all when they last came to perform for us. Please speak to me if you need to be reminded of David Stanley and his hard working singers and musicians. Tickets for this event will be £1.00 each and will go on sale during the Summer.

Coming up in the Summer is also our renewal date for membership. After allowing you to have a discount on the Membership fees for a number of years we are having to return the annual membership fee to £16.00. This is still great value at only £1.33 per month and in return for the extra outlay we have a special offer that you all will enjoy, but more of that next month.

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URGENT NOTICE - PLEASE READ
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During the current medical situation we may be asked to cancel all meetings.
This is not required at present and is unlikely to happen, but may occur in the next month or two.
There is little risk, at present, of infection by COVID-19 in this area but we suggest you practice the Government's suggestions for handwashing as this will also cut down the risk of contracting any of the other seasonal illnesses.

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PLEASE CHECK THE EVENTS PAGE FOR UPDATES BEFORE ATTENDING ANY GROUP OR MEETING.
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01/01/2020

Here we are at the beginning of another new year.
My suggestion is that this year you try something new. We have over 100 Interest Groups covering more than 50 subjects for you to try, we are going to be pushing to get more of our members to join some of the smaller Groups we have. In addition we will be advertising a Current Affairs Group and a Creative Writing Group shortly. So watch the web-site and listen out at the Monthly Speaker Meetings for more details.
As usual, I will add that if there is a subject that we don't cover then contact us and we will help you to set up a new group. It may take a while to arrange but I am sure that we can satisfy your needs, the only exceptions we make are that we cannot sanction anything that may be dangerous, remember the problem we had when we ran the Lion Taming Group! You don't need to be an expert on the subject, remember that all of the Group can contribute to the learning process, but we will need someone to co-ordinate these new groups. We will give advise and guidance to who ever takes the role of running an Interest Group. So, step forward and offer your services to our membership. Who knows? You may enjoy it!

15/12/2019

Well, we have come safely through Friday the 13th. We were still waiting for further information following the eruption of the Volcano on Whakaari or White Island in New Zealand that had occurred on Monday, but we got through Friday without further mishaps. It was, as every year, World Violin Day and most importantly it was the Thorpe Bay U3A monthly meeting. This month, being December, we had some festive fun for you.
The meeting commenced with a performance by the Southend Harmony Singers. A local choir formed in 1975 and led since 2006 by Janice Gray. The choir have won many trophies at the Southend and Leigh Music Festivals, whilst continuing to entertain audiences throughout the borough with their lively and varied concerts. They entertained us for 40 minutes, finishing with a medley of seasonal songs.
After refreshments we came to the main act. A pantomime performed by many of your very own members. Written for us by a Shoebury & Thorpe Bay U3A member, Steve Bishop, and directed by Carole Jonas it was the tale of everyday members of a U3A in Thorpe Bay. The pantomime was enthusiastically received by the audience, and the actors enjoyed every minute of the show (Oh yes, they did!). There were many great moments from the cast, although I am not sure about the antics of that nasty villain who managed to forget which scene he was in at times!
My thanks and those of the Committee go out to the Southend Harmony Singers and to all the talented performers who entertained us so well and managed to make it such a successful afternoon.

10/12/2019

I hope you are all looking forward to a wonderful afternoon's entertainment on Friday.
We will open with half an hour in the company of a gifted choir in the shape of the Southend Harmony Singers. Then after the obligatory tea or coffee and biscuits we will have some of our own members treading the boards to bring you "Thorpe Bay - The Pantomime". I am sure you will recognise some of the characters and their performers (Oh! Yes you will!) and will be ready to join in and give them your full support.

Don't forget that, as has become expected for our December meeting, it is one week earlier than the usual date and will start half an hour before the normal time at 1:30pm (13:30).

See you there!

26/11/2019

Having just returned from an hour of Pilates in the local gym it has reminded me just how much we need to keep moving.
There is an old adage Use it or lose it! and I have to remind you all that this is as true for us as for a teenager (I know we are all teenagers at heart).
We do have a number of groups that include some exercise. We have the London Walking Groups, Local History Walking, Walking for Health, and one of our longest running Groups the Walking Group who have pre-planned routes for the serious Rambler (if I am allowed to use that description).
We also have Cycling and various Dancing Groups, more sporting pastimes such as Ten Pin Bowling and Table Tennis. Have a look at the list on the Groups page and see what you fancy.
I can't guarantee at this point that any of those will have spaces but if they don't then perhaps you can help set up another group to provide that activity to others waiting to join in.
In addition, if you know or want to take part in an activity that we don't list then contact our Group Co-ordinators via the contact page on this web site and we will provide help and support for your new venture (with some big festival coming up we may be slow in responding but we will get back to you).
Some disciplines or activities (such as Pilates and Yoga) we cannot offer without a trained teacher as we do not want to risk injury to any of you, but perhaps you do have a suitable qualification and wish to impart your knowledge to others?
By this time next year will we have one of our members competing in the World's Strongest Man or Woman competitions?

Kevin

17/11/2019

My thanks to Barry Linton for stepping up at short notice to fill the session left vacant by the non-availability of Pam Jones the ex-Chairman of the UK U3A.
Barry managed to end his presentation at exactly 3:00pm (much to his own surprise) and I think we all learnt something new from his presentation on Cyber-Crime (Yes! Even Me!).
So don't forget, if you wish to live in a modern world, not just online, you must take some simple but important steps.

14/11/2019

Just a reminder to you all - The Monthly meeting is on Friday 2:00pm at Shoeburyness & Thorpe Bay Baptist Church.
Be prepared to learn how to protect yourself from Cyber Crime. This is not just online but also the protection of your Debit and Credit Cards whilst out on the street.

07/11/2019

Now a call out to you all.

Our U3A is an organisation run on your behalf by volunteers. The volunteers come from within our own members, in other words YOU!

All of the Group Leaders / Co-ordinators are volunteers and the Monthly Meeting can only continue with the support of the volunteers.
We do not expect that any one person should work 24/7 to provide their services to help us survive, rather we would like to see many, or even all, of the membership taking part in running our business.
None of the roles are onerous and many just involve a few minutes work or attendance at the Monthly Meeting.
If you feel you are able to lead an Interest Group, and remember you do not need to be an expert in the field you are studying just able to contact other members of the Interest Group each month, or act as a member of the Refreshments Team, or a Fire Steward at the Monthly Meetings.

Additionally we will, or even do, need Committee Members to run Thorpe Bay U3A. Anyone who comes forward for this will be helped to understand the tasks required by shadowing existing Committee Members and then taking over from them in a later year whence they, too, will have a shadow they can train up for the future. For instance, do you want to look after this website or our Newsletter or e-magazine? Do you want my job in a few years time?

So please consider whether you can help us make our U3A even greater than it is now!
Contact me or any other Committee member and we will give you more information.

If you wish to contact me directly please use the following e-mail address

chair.tbu3a@gmail.com

Kevin Eason
Chairperson
Thorpe Bay U3A

04/11/2019

As promised a couple of titbits that some of you may find interesting.

On this date in 1922 - British archaeologist Howard Carter and his team found the entrance to Tutankhamun's tomb in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt.
If you want to see the treasures that were removed from the tomb they will be on display for the last time in this country from the 2 November 2019 - 3 May 2020 at the Saatchi Gallery in the Kings Road London.

And in 1890 – The City and South London Railway: London's first deep-level tube railway opened between King William Street and Stockwell. The C&SLR was the first major railway to use Electric driven engines. The tunnels now form a part of the Northern Line.

01/11/2019

Welcome to all of you who have visited this page wondering what is behind the button!

I hope you had an uneventful All Hallows Eve last night and are now able to relax without the threat of hundreds of young children pleading for chocolate and candy.

At all sorts of odd intervals I am going to be typing short messages that may be useful to, or interesting to, all Thorpe Bay U3A members.

So check back whenever you visit the website and see what I have for you.

Kevin