Wantage & Grove


See Notice Board on WELCOME page for late changes to this programme.
All Meetings start at 2pm in Grove Parish Church Hall unless stated otherwise.

For more information on activities etc within individual GROUPS, click on the relevant GROUP heading below

Dates for your Diary
Tue Sep 3rd Speaker: Sophie Matthews - Music in Art
Sophie began playing flute at the age of ten but is now more well-known for her prowess on the English border bagpipes and has become one of the foremost players of the instrument in the UK.
She also plays a variety of early woodwind instruments such as shawm, rauschpfeife and recorder. She’s also one of a handful of British players of the baroque musette, an 18th century French bagpipe similar to the Northumbrian smallpipes. Sophie is also recognised as a superb interpreter of narrative song with a clear, pure and unaffected soprano voice. When not touring with GreenMatthews, Sophie also makes instruments (she made her own baroque oboe) and works with respected luthier Tony Millyard on his flutes. She’s previously worked with the Oxford Waits as well as the respected early music collective Piva. Sophie is self-taught on all of her instruments.
Tue Sep 17th Speaker: Tony Hadland - From biplanes to BAC via bouncing bombs
Tony studied architecture at the Oxford School of Architecture and surveying at Reading College of Technology. Between 2004 and 2009 he was administrator of the Vale & Downland Museum.
Tue Oct 1st Speaker: Martin Lloyd - Passports, Assassins, Traitors and Spies
Martin Lloyd is an experienced and popular speaker. He travels throughout the country giving talks to all kinds of groups and associations.
Tue Oct 15th Speaker: Hugh Granger - Thomas Alva Edison
Hugh is an Advanced Toastmaster, and has been a speaker for many years. We were one of his first clients, and this is his 10th visit to us. His last topic was “Can Plants Think?”
Tue Nov 5th Speaker: Derek Niemann - Birds in a Cage
A freelance writer and editor, he writes a fortnightly Country Diary column for the Guardian, and is a frequent contributor to BBC Wildlife magazine. A Nazi in the Family is his second book for adults. His first, Birds in a Cage, is the uplifting story of birdwatching British POWs in WW II. Derek’s most recent is A Tale of Trees; the Battle to Save Britain’s Ancient Woodland.
Tue Nov 19th Speaker: David Barber - The Queen's Swan Marker
David Barber, MVO, has worked on the River Thames for his entire adult life. He served his apprenticeship at Andrews Boatyard and runs a marine company at Cookham. He has been The Queen’s Swan Marker since 1993.
Tue Dec 3rd Speaker: Jenny Mallin - Five generations of my family who lived through the days of the Raj
With her passions for cooking, India, research and writing, Jenny’s award-winning cookbook “A Grandmother’s Legacy” has been a labour of love – a memoir that mingles the history of her family when they lived in India, with her grandmothers' recipes that were prudently passed down through the generations. Each recipe has been lovingly researched, leading Jenny on a road of discovery about her ancestors, with her grandmothers’ legacy continuing to assist in providing clues to their rich and eventful past. Now a writer, Jenny has had a colourful career as a Travel Buyer (which spawned her passion for travel and meeting people) and before that was in television production at the BBC in London. Any spare time that she has is spent doing painting, home decorating, jewellery making, listening to music, photography and enjoying nature.
Tue Dec 17th Christmas Social
Tue Jan 7th 2020 Speaker: John Caldicott - Daisy's Story - What happened to Daisy after she gave her baby into the care of the Foundling Hospital?
John talks on the history of Thomas Coram’s Foundling Hospital, the UK’s oldest children’s Charity, and the lives of the children. He is Governor of the Thomas Coram Foundation for Children and Secretary of the Old Coram Association.
Tue Jan 21st 2020 AGM
Tue Feb 4th 2020 Speaker: Jennifer Cowling - From the Page to the Stage
Drawing from her experience of a lifelong hobby in amateur theatre, on and off the stage, the talk gives insight into what is involved in putting on a musical show.
She answers the question often asked: "Why does it cost so much to see an AMATEUR show?" It explains that “amateur” only means “not paid” and in every other respect the aim is to be as professional as possible. Included is a short quiz for you to guess which songs are from which musical – time for toe-tapping.
Tue Feb 18th 2020 Speaker: Keith Hooper - Jane Austen
Keith’s area of expertise is Victorian literature. Awarded a doctorate from Exeter University for his work on Charles Dickens, his commissioned biography of the author came out in the Autumn. Available internationally and well reviewed, it seems to be selling well.
Speaking on Dickens, Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell and Charlotte Bronte, he has appeared at literary festivals, county library sponsored events, U3A groups and historical societies. In addition to talking about the above, he is more than happy to talk about 'my experiences as a writer' - they have been the subject of three recent local BBC Radio interviews.
Study Days
Fri Aug 30th Kelmscott Study Day The work of William Morris. (waiting list)
Run by Thames Valley Network
for more details go to Thames Valley Network on Links page
Tue Oct 22nd Ukulele Day at Benson Parish Hall
Sat Nov 16th TVN Day at Benson Parish Hall
Thu Nov 21st Britain’s Ancient Past at Benson Parish Hall
Wed Sep 25th I have booked a visit to the Royal Mint (near Cardiff) on Wednesday 25 September 2019. I anticipate that the price will be in the region of £30 per head (includes coach and entry cost at the Mint). I will be taking names at our next meeting on 3rd September. If you are not able to be at the meeting, but would like to be included, please message me via the CONTACT Page. George Goldsmith
Mon Sep 2nd No specific topic.
Art Appreciation
Tue Aug 27th Art which is outdoors. Meet at Pauline's house.
Tue Sep 24th Visit to Chedworth.
Current affairs
Fri Sep 13th at Ron's house.
Film studies group
Tue Sep 10th The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Society 2018 starring Jessica Brown Findlay and Tom Courtenay.
In the aftermath of World War II, a writer forms an unexpected bond with the residents of Guernsey Island when she decides to write a book about their experiences during the war.
Tue Oct 8th Mamma Mia - Here we go again 2018 starring Meryl Streep, Lily James and Amanda Seyfried.
Five years after the events of Mamma Mia! (2008), Sophie prepares for the grand reopening of the Hotel Bella Donna as she learns more about her mother's past.
Tue Nov 12th Swimming with Men 2018 starring Rob Brydon and Rupert Graves.
A man who is suffering a mid-life crisis finds new meaning in his life as part of an all-male, middle-aged, amateur synchronised swimming team.
Tue Dec 10th The Greatest Showman 2017 starring Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams.
Celebrates the birth of show business and tells of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a spectacle that became a worldwide sensation.
Thu Sep 5th Member's garden. Paddock Close, Wantage
Thu Oct 3rd Worcester College Meet at the Porter's Gate on the junction of Beaumont Street, Walton Street and Worcester Street at 2.00 pm. Free admission.
Thu Nov 7th tba
Tue Aug 27th NO meeting in August.
Tue Sep 24th NO meeting in September.
Tue Oct 22nd Meetings resume.
German Conversation
Thu Sep 5th The group will not meet in August or September.
Historic Towns
Mon Aug 26th No meeting (Bank Holiday).
Mon Sep 23rd

Wallingford ** Please note that this meeting ONLY will be held at 10.00 am and not 2.00 pm as usual.

Wed Sep 4th Books by Thomas Hughes
Music Makers
Wed Sep 4th No meetings in August.
Grove Village Hall.
Wed Sep 18th Grove Village Hall
Musical appreciation
Thu Sep 26th Theme TBA
Mon Aug 26th No meeting (Bank Holiday)
Mon Sep 23rd Medical Ethics, at Barbara’s house
Poets and their Poetry
Wed Sep 18th at Sarah's flat
Pub Quiz
Tue Sep 3rd Abingdon Arms, Wantage
Tue Sep 17th Abingdon Arms, Wantage
Fri Sep 27th Linda's house
Walking A
Sat Sep 28th Ardington, 5 mile circular. Leader: Keith Mansell
Sat Oct 26th Details to follow
Walking B
Mon Sep 9th Hungerford. Leader Trevor Matthews
Mon Oct 14th Oxford college. Details to follow (Keith)
Writing for fun
Fri Sep 20th "Lost" or "The Arch" or a subject of your choice.