Harlow Women's Institute

Member of the Federation of Essex Women's Institutes
Charity Registration Number 228992

Thursday 10 July 2014

Just an afterthought ~  another outing is planned for September.  On Wednesday 17 September, it is proposed that we go to Maldon to spend the day.  Likely cost would be £7.50, setting off from the WI Hall at 10am and leaving Maldon at 3.30pm.  Anyone interested should contact the President.

9 July

Forty-five members and two visitors attended today's meeting to hear Mark Lewis enthuse about the traditions and customs of Essex.  He took as his topic a calendar of customs, some of which were quite ancient in origin whilst others were of much more recent innovation.  Amongst the latter is the Maldon Mud Race which sprang into being (allegedly as the result of a bet) during the nineteen-seventies.  Originally taking place in January, it now occurs later in the year depending upon tides.  One of the oldest recorded customs is that of the Maypole.  In various forms, this was common across much of Western Europe.  Mr Lewis's talk was illustrated with photographs.  He was thanked by Dot Spriggs.

Harlow WI has recently had a Hearing Loop system fitted in the Hall, intended to improve audibility for those with hearing difficulties.  It has, however, enhanced the performance of the PA system generally so everyone has benefited. 

Amongst the members present today was Daphne Stringer, who retired as President in 2013.  Daphne has been very unwell after suffering a heart attack earlier in the year, and this was her first meeting since her illness.  We look forward to seeing her regularly, and wish her all the best for the future.

Another member who is experiencing changes in her life is Eleanor Hills, who grew up in Canada but has been in Harlow for a very long time.  Eleanor and her husband have made the momentous decision to 'downsize' and, although they had hoped to remain in Harlow, are in fact going to Braintree.  Members signed a card wishing Eleanor and her husband well.

After the tea interval, the competition for an Essex photograph was judged and the prize was awarded to Pam Marsh for her picture of the River Stort (taken on a WI walk). 
 Birthday flowers were presented to members with birthdays in July and August (when there is no formal meeting), and the raffle was drawn.  The National Anthem was sung and the meeting closed at 3.55pm.

Forthcoming events

Wednesday 16 July - outing to Saffron Walden

Friday 18 July - walk through Parndon Nature Reserve.  Meet at Terminus Street Bus Station, at the No.3 bus stop at 10.30am.

Wednesday 23 July - play-reading group meets at 2pm in the Committee Room at the Hall.  All welcome.

Wednesday 13 August - informal fish & chip lunch in the Hall (12.45 for 1pm, tickets £5)

Wednesday 22 October - Cobbins Group Meeting in Harlow WI Hall (2pm start, tickets £5)

Orders are now being taken for the 2015 WI Diary which costs £3.70.

A big thank-you to all those who helped with the Strawberry Tea on 2 July.  The event was attended by 44 members and visitors who all appeared to enjoy themselves.