Harlow Women's Institute

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

Sunday 17 September 2017

Nearly Autumn

The September meeting always feels like the first day back at school for the Autumn term, with members glad to see old friends again after the summer break whilst at the same time a faint sense of melancholy pervades the atmosphere.  However, we hope to keep everyone interested during the increasingly dark days between now and Christmas, with lots of events to look forward to and, above everything else, the hope that we'll be able to start on our plan of building improvements early in the New Year. 

This meeting had a re-arranged schedule as the President, Vice-President and Secretary were all absent for the first part of the afternoon.  They had been attending a meeting on hall management being held at County headquarters at Hatfield Peverel, which didn't close until 1 pm.  Consequently, the remaining committee members had to perform multiple tasks to ensure that the meeting got off to a smooth start.  By bringing forward the talk and making it the first item of the afternoon, the meeting ran as efficiently as ever, with many members saying that they preferred hearing the talk at the beginning - although some thought it seemed a long time before we got to the tea interval!

Mr Brian Billins spoke on Essex Smugglers and held his audience spellbound whilst also managing to make them laugh from time to time.  At the end of his talk, he was thanked by Jean Wright.  He also kindly judged the competition, which was for a miniature bottle (loose connection there with smuggling).  Out of a high number of entries, Angela Keill's bottle was the winner.

When tea finally arrived, it was accompanied by cake - actually a selection of small cakes beautifully decorated to celebrate the centenary of the Essex Federation.  The cakes were the result of a generous donation from the Federation to encourage all the Institutes in Essex to help celebrate one hundred years of the WI in Essex.  We are grateful to them for this gift (picture below). 

After tea, we had the raffle and the distribution of Birthday flowers.  This month there was a bumper crop of flowers - six September birthdays and four from August when we have no meeting.  Pictured below is one of the recipients.
The meeting closed at 4 pm with the singing of the National Anthem.

Forthcoming Events
   Thursday 21 September          Play-reading Group (2-4 pm)
   Friday 29 September              Craft Group (11 am-4 pm)
   Monday afternoons                 Darts and Games
  Tuesday 5 October                  Book Group (2-3.30 pm)
  Wednesday 11 October           WI Meeting (2 pm)
  Thursday 26 October              Cobbin Group Meeting
                                        (1.30 for 2 pm at North Weald)

Donations of small gift parcels for our 'Mystery Gift' stall at the Group Meeting will be greatly appreciated.  Please bring to our meeting on 11 October.  Many thanks.