Annual Report 2019

This is our 12th Annual Report, our membership stands at 48 with a committee of 11.

In past years, this section of my report has been like a game of musical chairs! At the AGM, Pat was at the helm with Janet and myself looking after money and communications. Daphne and Lynn joined us to run the programme and Sally joined us to cover publicity. Rosie, Julie, Joyce and Tina stepped down at the AGM and Audrey, Gill, Eunice and Jo stayed on. On behalf of the membership, I thank you all for your continued support and hard work. It doesn’t sound like much to report but for that I’m quite glad, as we’ve managed to achieve quite a lot with a good, solid team.

So we start with our thanks Daphne and Lynn for providing such a great programme of speakers for us during the last year, from Paul with his Wigs, Julia Payne about the Cold War, Amanda cooks paella, Marion Leeper talking about the Kitchen Cat, Carol McBraine talked about movement and balance, Sallie Crawley about handling stress and last month Peter Murphy talked about the Cambridge Spies. Probably my favourite evening was brought to us by Caroline Meyrick from Fine Cell Work, a charity that teaches stitching to prisoners, aiming to provide them with an income, a skill and an opportunity not to reoffend. I bought a little bag that is now home to my crochet hooks. My other favourite evening was our Christmas Social, we had a lovely time just being social and I won the raffle again!! Outside of our meetings, we visited Island Hall in Godmanchester and went to see My Fair Lady at the Arts Theatre in Cambridge. They were fab days out for all who went and a big thank you goes to Pat, Daphne, Lynn and all involved in organising the trips.

Our lunches have experienced fine cuisine from all corners of our locality, with thanks to all those who have organised them. The Choir continues to go from strength to strength with performances at the Flower Festival at the church, Ely Cathedral, Bethany Care Home in St Neots and lots of others. Thank you all for your time and generosity.

I thought our support of the community reached new levels last year but we absolutely smashed it this year. Sally organised the planting of bulbs in the Village Centre and again we were inundated with your generosity. We served Vintage Tea at the Papworth Fete in June making over £1000 which we donated to good causes within our community. The Day Centre, the church, our choir and Papworth Hospital all received a share of the spoils! I absolutely loved helping at the fete! Never have I heard so many people shout the name “Pat!”. I made a new friend in Pat’s husband, Tony who helped me crack why our generator kept cutting out at about lunchtime. You see, we hired the correct wattage to power 2 tea urns and 1 kettle, and we couldn’t work out why the generator couldn’t cope with what we had plugged in. It wasn’t until we noticed that Angela the puppet lady had also plugged in her mega wattage hair dryer into the power source that the pieces all slotted together. The hair dryer was draining all the power and overloading the generator. We also found some of our members had some hidden talents, as Julie Day now holds the record for amount of dishwashing performed at an outdoor event! We also provided a Vintage tea at the Pamper Evening in November and this time we kept the takings for our own kitty and didn’t need a generator.

Our generosity didn’t stop there as collections at our meetings raised nearly £180 for Macmillan from cake baking and our combined Christmas card raised money for Sue Ryder in memory of Janet Kemp. At our annual appearance at Pendragon school, we awarded prizes at the school’s leavers assembly. Huge thanks to you all.

To everyone that helps out at meetings, thank you. Thank you to the refreshment teams, the meeters-and –greeters, to the birthday card posse, to our scrapbook ensemble, to our darts team and captain, and to our archivist. To everyone involved in producing and serving the fabulous food we’ve enjoyed at special meals throughout the year; to everyone that attends, a big thanks.

So this time last year, I said that I looked forward to working with our President Pat this year but that didn’t really happen. In fact, I’ve loved every minute of it! Capable, sharing, caring – I have no words to describe this lovely lady. We’ve laughed, been bemused and amused, and very nearly lost our minds and tempers over that poxy generator but I wouldn’t have changed it for the world. Thanks Pat, you’re amazing.

So what does 2019 have in store for Papworth Everard WI? Well, Lynn and Daphne are working on an interesting and varied programme of speakers and plenty of other things happening with the community throughout the year. Sadly some familiar faces will be leaving the Committee. Janet – we will miss your financial updates regarding your cruises. We thank you for your service and all you’ve done for PEWI, you will be greatly missed. The accounts have probably never been in such good shape for our next Treasurer.

The other face you’ll be missing at the top table will be mine but I’m leaving you in Joan’s capable hands (I hope)! Its been a blast for three and a half years but it’s now time to hand over to fresh eyes (and wits). It’ll be nice to experience our evenings from the cheap seats for a change! Thanks all, you’ve been amazing. Clair Stroud who sends emails as Clair Smart now signing off as PEWI secretary.

Clair Stroud

Secretary PEWI