Contact Dave Angus- for all updates

I would like to welcome Thurrock U3A Members to our meeting today (now cancelled due to Coronavirus) and trust things run more smoothly as last month we had a Speaker who had to dash off due to unforeseen circumstances. However the Speaker Chris Truran’s talk on “DABS/DNA” was very interesting and he received a good response and some interesting questions too before he had to leave.

Since our last meeting the newly formed Committee has had its second Committee Meeting and we are all gelling together well as a new TEAM moving forwards taking Thurrock U3A into the 21st Century. We hope, for the benefit of Members, to be introducing some changes to our monthly meetings as we progress forward and we welcome comments and suggestions from Members. To this end there is a Suggestion Box at the rear of the Hall together with Forms that can be filled in. We have asked for names on the Forms so that we can contact the Member if necessary. While there may not be lots for Members to see for themselves at the moment things are changing slowly “behind the scenes” as Committee Members take up their new roles.

Our Vice Chairperson Kay Hatter has agreed to be the Group Co-ordinator taking over from Ruth Hood who did a splendid job during her years of office. I will leave Group Leaders to introduce themselves to Kay. Members should note however that we still need Group Leaders for the Bird Watching Group, the Cribbage Group and the History Group and anyone who is interested should contact Kay Hatter.

A list of who does what on the Committee is as follows:

Vice Chairperson
Treasurer No 3 Account
Membership Secretary

Dave Angus
Kay Hatter (Group Co-ordinator)
Paul Heasmer (Speaker Meet and Greet)
Jean Hopkins) Cover for each other should the
Terry Hurley ) need arise.
Mary Scillitoe (Deputy Sandra Hurley) + Publicity Group

Pat Thwaites
Pam Quilter
Mel Lewis
Sandra Hurley
Brenda Stevens
Ray Bygate
Yvonne Simpson
Ruth Hallums
Paul Cutler
Paula Dockrill

Sunday Singles + Publicity Group
Publicity Group
Publicity Group + Petanque/Boules
Trips + Welcome and Greet when required
Local Interest Group + Strollers
Welcome and Greet
Welcome and Greet

A change “behind the scenes” is that our monthly Committee Meetings are now held at The Beehive Community Centre in the centre of Grays which will be far more convenient as a base for the Committee. Being based at The Beehive, which is a CVS building, means that if there is anything of benefit to Thurrock U3A Members about what is going on in Thurrock then we can bring that news back to our monthly meetings to share.

At our Committee Meeting it was decided to have deputies covering some posts in case of emergencies and these are shown above.

Another new responsibility is that Committee Member Terry Hurley has agreed to take on the newly introduced role of being Treasurer of our “No 3 Account” which covers all the financial aspects of the Interest Groups Activities, that account is to be renamed the “Social Account”, Jean Hopkins remains Treasurer of the main Thurrock U3A account and is working with our Bank to see through the changes that the Committee is making. A mandate is being set up with the Bank so that there are five Committee members and any two can sign cheques on behalf of Thurrock U3A these are myself, Kay Hatter, Paul Heasmer, Jean Hopkins and Terry Hurley.

Four members of the Committee Pam Quilter, Mary Scillitoe, Pat Thwaites and Mel Lewis, have agreed to take on the Publicity role of advertising Thurrock U3A so that people know of our existence and what we do.

A new Member who recently suffered bereavement said how pleased they was they had joined Thurrock U3A because of the way they have been welcomed and felt they had turned a corner. So Thurrock Members should congratulate themselves on successfully delivering the U3A philosophy of Living Life and Expanding Horizons. The Committee wants to give new Members the chance to make friends more quickly and soon feel part of the club as a whole.

Maggie Whitbread and Ruth Hood are to be made Honorary Members of Thurrock U3A.

The April meeting will include a Presentation from Martin Harris about the Great Ormand St Children’s Hospital and hopefully we will all benefit from learning more about the wonderful work being done there. I spent some time there as a child a very long time ago and had my Wisdom Teeth Roots removed.

Dave Angus - Chairperson


Today I had the pleasure of welcoming everyone to my first Thurrock U3A meeting as Chairperson. In total there were 237 Members attending the meeting.

I was able to share with Members what my Granddaughter Daisy said to me when I told her I had been made Chairman of Thurrock U3A and she said “does that mean you put the chairs out Gramps” what a laugh that gave us.

The meeting had a slightly different slant on it today because the very interesting speaker, Chris Truran who gave a talk on “DABS/DNA” had to rush off to a funeral in South London so after a very brief introduction he gave his presentation. Chris never fails to give a good presentation sharing lots of interesting facts about his experiences in the Forensic Science Department of the Police Force. He shared slides and film shows of crimes that proved the perpetrator guilty of crimes no matter how much they pleaded their innocence due to DABS and DNA evidence. The case of Sara Payne was a good example of how the Police were able to get evidence from the Velcro on the shoe of Sara that was found some time after the event, by someone walking her dog near the scene of the crime, but that had parts of Roy Whiting’s red top in the Velcro that was found in his van and that nailed him.

After Chris gave his very interesting presentation I was able to take the opportunity to publicly thank Maggie Whitbread and Ruth Hood for all the work they had done for Thurrock U3A and how the New Committee had had one Committee Meeting and how the new Committee were all looking forward to working together introducing change. Also, that Kay Hatter had taken on the role of Group Co-ordinator from Ruth Hood and would be overseeing all the Group activities.

I was also able to remind Members about details of some of the trips they had booked that needed updating by themselves such as menu choices which was helpful. I then closed the meeting and thanked everyone for coming.

Amendments to February Newsletter
The following amendments for the February Newsletter are: There are 6 new Committee Members and not 5, Terry Hurley’s name was omitted as a new Committee Member. Chrystine Moreland’s name was misspelt, apologies to Chrystine.

Dave Angus - Chairperson