Rotary Club of Romney Marsh newsletter ISSUE 37 – MARCH 2021
Who would have thought zooming at Christmas could be so much fun? Well, despite all the doom and gloom, heartache and loss we managed to get together to overcome our phobias with technology and enjoy a little time on online with our virtual Christmas Party. Everyone involved brought something special to the party, be it jokes, poems, anecdotes or information on Christmas history. And let’s not forget our Christmas Best Silly Hats competition – we were all winners there! But most especially and best of all was the seasonal camaraderie everyone shared.
To add even further to the camaraderie, on 18th December a few of our members. joined a virtual Christmas Party held by our friends at the Rotary Club of Gelsenkirchen Buer and were entertained by photographs of the beautiful Christmas decorations in their homes (I think they’d had a competition) and also by wonderful live music recitals, and singing, by their talented Club Members.
Wow! Thanks to Lindy and Andrew who kindly provided quizzes, encouraging us to utilise our brains during lockdown via Zoom and bringing together not only the Club members but also their partners. Hilarious and competitive fun had by all, even if certain members nearly always came tops, namely Andrew, Gill and Mark.
We were fortunate to be given an interesting and informative talk by Anyes Reading, highlighting and informing us about “Dandelion Time” a Kent based charity which has been established for over 20 years.
The charity works with abused and neglected children and, where possible, a nominated family member. Their professional staff and helpers work hard to try to establish a relationship of trust and promote self-esteem for the children, working to re-engage them within the community.
Part of their ethos is teaching children how to care and work with animals within their farm estate, engendering in the children the same non-judgemental attitude as the animals provide. In addition, the charity encourages the children to do craft and cooking activities together, providing them time and space to relax and be safe, during which time professional counselling is available. Club members agreed to make a donation to this worthy local charity.
“My Job Talk”
Trevor Harrison gave an interesting talk regarding his working career, taking us on a journey commencing with his Grammar School and moving forward to his four year course to qualify as a quantity surveyor, which he studied in Ewell. In 1975 he worked for London Transport, and it was during this time that he met his much loved wife Penny. Throughout his working career he travelled extensively around the world especially in the Middle East, and during this time he obtained his RICS qualification. He outlined some of the many projects in which he was involved and described how he enjoyed all his experiences – well, most of them!
One of his most challenging, interesting and memorable jobs, which he spoke about with enthusiasm and pride was working on the construction and installation of the Wimbledon Centre Court roof. Trevor said that during his working career he had the pleasure of meeting many people, some of whom have become lifelong friends. He recalled many good, and some challenging, times with experiences that on occasion were extraordinary and sometimes a little scary too.
“Those Magnificent Ladies in their Flying Machines”
Those Magnificent Ladies in their Flying Machines” was the title of a talk given by Peter Stammers a Fellow Rotarian from Sutton-Nonsuch Club. Peter had spent his working career in Education, however through the years he had developed a particular interest in aviation. It was from his personal interest that he developed an extremely detailed knowledge of the subject and he proceeded to enlighten our group regarding the role of women throughout aviation history.
He commenced by giving a preamble and a brief synopsis on the history of flying, especially around World War II. He took us through time, commencing with Hilda Hewlett, the first woman to obtain a UK pilot’s licence, who then set up the first British Flying School in 1910 at Brooklands.
Peter moved on to talk about various outstanding and brave women throughout aviation history, speaking at length about women’s’ progress within the flying industry and portraying many detailed accounts. To mention just few: Amy Johnson, who flew from England to Australia, Jackie Cochrane, the first woman to break the sound barrier, who took various speed and distance records following the war, and Pauline Gower, an inspirational woman who started the women’s branch of the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA), the organisation which delivered aircraft from factories to operational RAF squadrons during WWII. Pauline successfully pushed for women to be part of the ATA, enabling and empowering them to take an active flying role and to be acknowledged for their major contribution to the war effort.
There were many fascinating anecdotes and statistics from the earliest days of flying to the present day. A spellbinding interesting talk, bringing back to life those brave and wonderful forgotten women pilots during the war.
STOP PRESS! The Club has just launched an appeal to the public and local businesses to donate any laptops, tablets and desktops that they may have which are no longer needed to help students in our local schools without devices of their own with home schooling. See our website (details below) or Facebook page and look out for posters in your local shops for details of how you can help.
Coming up …
- 4th March: Julie Lawrence Quiz/Puzzle Night
- 25th March: Mark Singfield presenting a talk about his career.
- 28th April: Charity Golf Day – check out our website for details
- 29th April: Roger Constable presenting a talk about his career.
So what do I do if I want to join?
We would be delighted to welcome new Members to the club. If you are interested in joining us, get in touch via email firstname.lastname@example.org or check out our website – www.romneymarshrotary.co.uk where you can also find out a little more about who we are and what we do.
Reg’d charity no 281361