Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Following the introduction of the 3-tier Covid-19 restrictions by the government, the National u3a have updated their Guidance for Running u3a's during Covid-19 INCLUDING NEW GUIDANCE ON RUNNING INTEREST GROUPS. See the following link for more information Covid-19 Advice on u3a Activities 23/10. The National u3a Website gives further guidance on Running Your u3a during Covid-19 including Checklist and Risk Assessment information. You will need to log-in or register for access to the Advice Section of the National u3a website to view this information.

The Latest Government Restrictions are summarised at Coronavirus - What You Need to Do (www.gov.uk/coronavirus)

If you know of any members who do not have access to the internet and our Newsletters it would be appreciated if you would consider printing and delivering a copy for them e.g when out of the house for other reasons. Thank you.


See the Virus Special Newsletter 8, July 2nd from our Chairman for yet more links to external websites to keep you amused and entertained and a further selection of humorous items - Learn, Laugh and Live

Sign up for your regular personal copyof the National U3A Newsletter here.

How to Guides The u3a Trust team have provided a series of How to Guides to help you stay connected from email to WhyPay? and Zoom - Facebook to Whatsapp. You can find them on the national website here: How-To-Guidance. Also the latest Witney Newsletter October 2020 contains a guide on how to use Zoom for joining our twice monthly on-line speaker meetings and on how to join and host other meetings e.g. for interest groups.

A list of some of the companies and organistions that can provide home delivery and support services can be found at the foot of this page



  • Sources of advice on Coronavirus
  • Information on Useful Sites to maintain interest when isolated at home.

You can continue to contact any member of the committee via the links on the Contact page of this website.

If any u3a member has been directly affected by Coronavirus please contact the Chair immediately. Thank you


Sources of Advice on Coronavirus


Useful Sites to Keep in Touch, Maintain Interest and Avoid Boredom

Whilst we are spending more time at home, and our normal General Meetings and Interest Group meetings and Activies are suspended, the Witney u3a Committee are keen to maintain interest and learning opportunities for those at home. We are therefore providing the following list of websites that can be useful in this respect.

If you have suggestions for further sites that could be useful or have other ideas on how members can maintain interest and interact with each other during the outbreak, please contact any member of the Committee using the Contacts page of this website

Keeping in Touch:

Video Conferencing 4 *WhatsApp https://www.whatsapp.com fast, simple, messaging and calling for free, available on phones all over the world. See How to Make a Call on WhatsApp (https://www.wikihow.tech/Make-a-Call-on-WhatsApp)

  • Whypay (https://whypay.net) free conference call software which allows three or more people speaking on the phone together at the same time. Good for people who don’t have internet access or aren’t confident using it
  • Skype (https://www.skype.com/en/) Online system for audio & video calls, to individuals & for group calls. Useful for setting up Interest Group meetings? The Zoom Video and Audio Conferencing facility is also very popular
  • Soar Valley u3a has produced - thanks to member Paul Fileman - an excellent Concise Guide to Virtual Meetings to help U3As develop virtual meetings and ways of keeping in touch.
  • How to Guides The u3a Trust team have provided a series of How to Guides to help you stay connected from email to WhyPay? and Zoom - Facebook to Whatsapp. You can find them on the national website here: How-To-Guidance.
  • A National u3a Facebook page entiltled 'u3a - Keeping in Touch' has been created to help u3a members to stay in contact with each other and also a place to share ideas u3as are using to maintain learning and interests and to keep in touch. To join this group go to u3a - Keeping in Touch (https://www.facebook.com/groups/2833125070105668/). You will need to have or create a Facebook account to join.
  • In this period of enforced isolation, we thought it was time to resurrect our Witney U3A Facebook page which has been dormant for some time. This page is only open to Witney u3a members and is a good way to communicate with fellow members. You can use it to share ideas and keep each other's spirits up! We are still finding our way around Facebook so please bear with us if there are a few bloopers! You will need a Facebook account to access this page.

Learning (Courses and Talks):

Learning *Open University (https://www.open.edu/openlearn/free-courses/full-catalogue) Open University short courses on a range of subjects including science, the arts, history, languages etc..

  • Futurelearn (https://www.futurelearn.com) similar to Open University but from a range of Universities nationally & internationally. Free.
  • Duolingo (https://www.duolingo.com) fun language learning site for all ages.
  • TED Short Talks (https://www.ted.com/talks) - non-profit organisation offering short talks on a range of subjects from science to business to global issues.


National Theatre *National Theatre Live streaming: a range of plays are available to stream via their YouTube Channel during their closure

  • Youtube (https://www.youtube.com) great for exercise videos to keep you moving. Just search for yoga, tai chi, seniors’ exercise or whatever you fancy.
  • BBC Sounds https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds BBC Sounds to listen again to any BBC radio programme, podcast, audiobooks etc. Free.
  • See the Oxford Playhouse site for information on their on-line and other activities

National u3a Initiatives:

u3a logo *More and more u3a members are getting involved in the u3a Diary Project - keeping a record of what they are doing and feeling in these extraordinary times. The current situation is impacting on people in lots of different ways and you will all have your own experiences, thoughts and reflections on what this time is like for you and how it is affecting you, both on a practical and on a psychological level.

  • The Birdtrack Project is a free and convenient way of storing your bird records online. BirdTrack lets you keep up to date with what others are seeing, view the latest trends, and contribute your data to BTO science.
  • U3A-Eye Photographic Project: The U3A are launching a new on-line Photographic Project U3A Eye to celebrate our budding U3A photographers and encourage them to submit pictures of their surroundings during this unprecedented time. Follow the link for furter details.
  • Virtual u3a (https://vu3a.org) Virtual u3a, lots of “virtual” interest groups, activities & discussions.
  • The National u3a have launched 3 new u3a Discussion Forums covering 'Learning', 'Our u3a Community' and 'Beacon' (discussions around using the u3a Management System). Follow the preceeding link for more details.

The Virus Special Newsletters (see links top right) provide a vast array of further links with useful and interesting ideas

Local Support:

The following local Companies/Shops advertise as offering delivery services for their products: (Witney U3A hope you find this list useful but are not able to take any responsibility for any service listed).

CompanyProductsContact Details
Wates and Co DelicatessenVegetable, Fruit and Stir Fry Boxes, Deli add-ons01993 778680, watesandcodeli@outlook.com
CoolCuisineFresh, Chilled and Frozen Food, Vegetables, Home Basics and Grocery products 01993 866505, info@coolcuisine.co.uk, www.coolcuisine.co.uk/
Denshams Butchers Meats and Basic Grocery Products etc01993 703714, https://denshamsbutchers.co.uk
Jolly FoodsMeats, Fresh Fish, Cheeses and Deli01993, 837500, sales@jollyfoods.co.uk, www.jollyfoods.co.uk
ue-coffeeroastersCoffee and Essential Groceries 01993 706767, www.uecoffeeroasters.com

If you are unable to leave your home because of the Coronavirus epidemic, The Witney Land Army (07784 305521, hq@witneylandarmy.org) are a volunteer group that can help with:

  • Arranging deliveries
  • Picking up Shopping and Medication
  • A Friendly Phone Call
  • Posting Mail
  • Signposting You to More support
  • Topping up Gas or Electricity Key

Video conference and learning images courtesy pikisuperstar:
Designed by pikisuperstar / Freepik