Newsletter from your Chairman May 2022



Hi everyone,

I am writing this newsletter some 1000 miles away looking out to sea on a beautiful day in Ibiza.  Like you, the last two years have been a blur – almost like putting life ‘on hold’.  So it’s good to be out here once more meeting friends and catching up! The weather here in Spain had been pretty miserable until last week when the sun came out and the wind direction changed! Now, with the sun shining here, the locals are determined to get the season off to a flying start.


The island depends on tourism to survive and, with lockdowns, many businesses have gone under after the last two very lean years. All businesses that are left are hoping that people will come back this year and revive their ailing economy.

The photo is taken on the west coast of Ibiza.  Talking of photos, our own website is looking a little dated and we need to have more up to date images.  So, group leaders, here is your challenge for the next two months – please try and take some photos of your group in action and get them to Sue Farrell, our website organiser ([email protected]).  But please check that any members of your group appearing in any photo are happy for their image to be used

wine group 3


Apologies to wine group 3 who sent me a photo last month of their group meeting on the evening of Pancake Day which I forgot to include in last month’s newsletter – but here it is now!


This month sees the return of Andy Thomas – one of the best speakers we have had at our u3a. He researches areas of interest with some reflection on conspiracy theories, and many of you will remember his excellent talk about crop circles. I think we all left that meeting buzzing about whether they were a natural phenomenon or man-made!  This time he will be talking at the 25th May meeting on the Lewes Bonfire Society history and why it has become such a national event.  Many of you will know that Lewes has a very old Bonfire Society full of tradition linked to the Guido Fawkes story. They have strong links with our own Edenbridge Bonfire Society and always send representatives to our local event.  Andy is an excellent speaker and this promises to be a very stimulating event in our calendar.

Our current membership stands just below 200 members – down on our pre-covid numbers.  Our membership year runs from July when we have our Annual General Meeting. Please check our minutes of previous AGMs on the website ( One of the unfortunate side effects of the lockdowns and covid infections is that this past year our membership secretary and the treasurer have had real difficulty chasing up late payers.  We are proposing that, from the AGM date this year, members who have not paid their subscription for 2022/23 by the end of September 2022 will have their membership details removed from our database and will no longer be eligible to attend monthly meetings and group events.  I am pleased to announce that our local membership fee for next year stays the same, i.e. £20 for single members and £35 for a couple.

WANTED - Of course the AGM is a time when we may lose some of our committee and gain new people.  If you would like to join our vibrant committee please approach one of the members of the committee – you will be made very welcome! 

Finally, enjoy the warm summer-like weather, stay safe, stay healthy and see you all soon!

Best wishes

Mike Collins

Email [email protected]

Download the newsletter as a pdf

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