Newsletter from your Chairman April 2023

Mike Collins

Dear members

I hope this newsletter finds you all well – at last we have seen some sunshine this Easter weekend and the bird song has intensified.  A sure sign that Spring is ongoing.

Our March speaker, Paul Robbins, certainly brought back many memories of the 1960s for all of us in the audience.  It certainly was a decade that was memorable in so many ways and Paul managed to put those ten years into context for us in an amusing and pleasant way.


One thing is for certain, despite all the snow and frequent rain this Winter, it is now the month for tulips.  Interesting that all the new ones planted last Autumn to fill up gaps in the garden have flowered well before the established tulips that have been there for many years.

And now for something completely different!

Our speaker for this month is Lucy Allen.  Are you a person who stays after the end of a film in the cinema to look at the credits? After the key acting roles there is a section for the stunt actors. Well, our speaker is one of those. She has over 120 credits for her stunt performances.  None of us would choose to fall down a set of steps, neither do most actors.  So, a stunt double is employed to complete that dangerous action.  Lucy has many credits to her name, both in film and television, as a stunt lady who has appeared in many films and TV programmes. (A Bond movie, two Harry Potter films, Eastenders and Holby City to name but a few!)  Sounds like she has a few wonderful stories to tell – she also has a role in theatre as a stunt action co-ordinator. A speaker not to be missed!  See you on the 26th April.

Last month I gave you details of speakers for the next four months. Sadly, Bernard Lockett has had to pull out of our May meeting (31st) where he was due to talk about Gilbert and Sullivan.  Maureen, our speaker co-ordinator, has been able to get a replacement and the new speaker for May is now Major Paul Whittle who will be talking on “Toy train to the Clouds”. This is now a World Heritage site and is a mountain railway built by British engineers that climbs 7000 feet to the old hill station of Darjeeling.  That is quite some climb!


So, the revised speaker list and their presentations now looks like this:

31 May - Major Paul Whittle - Toy train to the clouds

28 June - Jane Ramsay - Duke and Duchess of Windsor

26 July - James Dickinson - Arundel Castle /Fizalan Howards

All at Crockham Hill Hall, 2pm start


Committee members:


Good news – we have a member agreeing to take on the Treasurer’s role.  So, as you know, Peter Welch is standing down from the role of Treasurer at the end of our financial and membership year in June.  At the AGM we will be proposing that Bill Salmond will be appointed as our new Treasurer to start officially in July. When we get closer to the AGM in July, I will publish a full list of the committee including all the new members taking up their positions.

More good news – despite there only being three more months of membership left this year we are still taking on new members.  Thank you if you have been responsible for persuading someone new to join.

Even more good news – at the committee meeting in March we agreed to reduce our membership fees for the next year (this maybe the only thing that costs you less in 2023 than it did in 2022!)

From 1st July 2023 Single membership will be just £15, and Joint membership will be £25


That’s all folks – stay safe and stay healthy, see you on the 26th

Mike Collins

Chairman                  Email ([email protected])

PS - Mike Buckingham, who is setting up the snooker group, needs just a few more to make the group viable.  Please give your name to Brian Swift if you want to join this group.


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Previous editions  of our newsletter can be found in the Newsletter archive