Monday, 26 September 2016

Sporting Events Group

Sporting Events Group

Is there any interest for a new Group which would organise tickets, transport and timetables for attending Sporting Events (a bit like the Theatre Group, but focussed on Sports)?  For example, Twickenham or Harlequins for Rugby Union; Eastbourne/ Wimbledon for Tennis; Lords / Oval for cricket etc.  

Feedback please to Peter Welch at or Brian Swift at

Dowsing Course Two

Dowsing Course

Dowsing Two

Dowsing 2 will take place on Tuesday 18 October 2016 in Edenbridge, starting at 10.30 and finishing by 13.00. The cost is £5 per person.

Depending on the weather, we should have an opportunity to do some Water Divining, Ley Line Finding, Dowse Searching etc. as well as a little bit of theory.

All are welcome and there is no need to have attended Dowsing 1.  If you would like to attend, please contact John Watson at for further details including meeting place.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes

You would never believe that the serious topic of potato growing could cause so much laughter - digging them up, arriving at The Weighing and looking at each other's efforts. In Spring of this year, Victoria, one of our members provided us all with an unidentified potato which needed chitting. The task was to see how many potatoes could be grown either in the ground or in a pot in the allotted time. Early September was digging up time.

Ten of the group took a potato and eight managed to get a crop (of sorts). Some of us fell at the first hurdle when our potato withered away and another threw hers on the compost heap feeling they weren't suitable for display. Eight presented potatoes for THE GRAND WEIGH-IN. It was a very serious matter. Each came forward with their crop and a weight was given. This in itself created much merriment as some crops would not have fed a small child and others were quite respectable. One of them was dug up in front of our very eyes, much to the owner's disappointment with two potatoes not much bigger than marbles. Each had to be brought forward in a plastic bag, de-stoned and washed. There were a number of categories and here are the winners.....

Highest Yielding Crop First Prize         -     Gill Scholey
Highest Yielding Crop Second Prize    -     Pat Canavan
Largest Potato                                        -     Gill Scholey
Smallest Potato                                      -     Lynn Swift
Best Presented Potatoes                       -     Pat Canavan
Commended                                       -     Margaret Fudge.
All others received a certificate for Participation
Next year's competition starting in March 2017 will be to produce a trio of culinary herbs of similar size in a pot either from seed or cuttings. Details to follow.
Participants with their crops
First Prize and Largest Potato - Gill Scholey
Second Prize and Best Presented - Pat Canavan

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Dowsing Course Day One

Dowsing Day One
Edenbridge Leisure Centre
August 2016

Dowsing Course One in the Leisure Centre
Who would have thought that playing with two metal rods and a pendulum with like minded people could be such fun? Well it is and it was.
John demonstrates the use of the pendulum

Nine of us gathered in a room at the Edenbridge Leisure Centre to do just that. It was the first of John Watson's courses on Dowsing or water divining as it is sometimes known. John has been practising this art for many years and is convinced of its possible successes which means that his trainees can practise with confidence and certainly that is what happened.

We started with a description of dowsing and a little bit about its history. Those of us who were around in the early days of Edenbridge U3A will remember John's talk on the subject. He captivated us with his knowledge on the subject of The Arcane Art of Dowsing and it's still one of the most popular posts on the website. You can find it HERE.
The tools of the trade

But this was not to be a course on just theory. John was keen to get us practising what we preached and out of his briefcase came the tools we needed. If you go on Amazon, you'll find dowsing rods for £34 and up or a dowsing pendulum for roughly the same - the sky's the limit. John produced professional quality equipment for a fiver and that included the hire of the room. Rods made of bent metal and a pen and a pendulum made of an earplug and nylon string did the job just as good at a fraction of the cost.
Finding an emotional spot with the pendulum

Firstly we were shown in pairs how to find a valuable object in our own drawings of a room in our homes using a swinging motion with the pendulum which eventually turned into a circulating pendulum. It worked for most of us and with reasonable success for some. We graduated onto finding the house, using a map, in Notting Hill which used to be 10 Rillington Place where serial killer John Christie had murdered at least 8 women in the 1940s and 1950s including his wife. We had approximate success with that one, maybe due to our technique rather than dowsing's ability to find an emotional spot.

We had a break for coffee anticipating the real thing when we would go out into the park to practise like real dowsers with rods! We had an interesting conversation over coffee about whether dowsing really worked and its relationship with other unexplained phenomena such as remote viewing and the paranormal.

The Edenbridge Dowsers
Bob and Vivien find the grate with Marian approaching
John explained that it's not just about water but can be used to find anything including metal grates or even your lost wallet if you concentrate hard enough. At least it's worth a try. We practised firstly with things we could see such as the grates just outside with mixed success but the real coup was when we were searching for water, namely the outlet pipe for the pond John explained that he and other dowsers had tried out what we were going to do and, without telling us where the outlet was, he left us to our own devices.

Serious concentration from Vivien as Ken goes "Off Piste"
In the process, two passing young girls split their sides laughing at these 9 people of a certain age wandering around seemingly mindlessly with rods in their hands. At least we gave someone a good day! But, lo and behold, all of us were successful in finding the unseen flow of water proving that, at least on this occasion, dowsing does work.

Thank you, John for an entertaining and educational morning which we are all keen to build upon by having a second session in the near future. If you're interested in doing day two (no previous experience required), contact John.
Final instructions from John before we find the water!

Monday, 29 August 2016

August 2016 News

 Visit to Hampton Court
Normally, during the month of August, Edenbridge U3A takes a rest. Not so this year! We seem to have been as busy as ever starting with our AGM at the beginning of the month and group meetings of all types taking place all over the place throughout the month.

What with such changeable August weather from heatwaves to cool days to stormy weather, what better way to keep up with your friends than going to a whole range of groups in your local U3A? It's all been happening with a visit to Hampton Court, discussing tomatoes with fellow gardeners, short walks and long walks and cycling on the Worth Way. Theatre goers have been "Enchanted" at the Cadogan Hall, members have tasted a variety of wines on a balmy evening as well as visiting a perfect country NGS Garden and many, many more.
Dizzying View from a Backstage Tour of Cadogan Hall

We've also had quite few new members who we'd like to welcome as this is probably their first U3A newsletter. Just a gentle reminder to our existing members - the Annual Subscription is now due. If you have not renewed, please contact the Membership Secretary. And, if for any reason. you have decided to leave us, please let her know also so that we don't bother you anymore. Remember that we will always welcome you back when the time is right for you.

We've also made it easier for you and for us to make the website even better, by appointing a Website Reporter, to work alongside Stephen who will continue together to make our website one of the best around. You can read about it below or on the Home Page. This is essential reading for Committee Members and Group Contacts.

Since the last newsletter...........

And some you may have missed.......
Membership Renewal Due Now!

Existing members can download the Renewal Form HERE.
New Members can download a copy of the Application Form HERE.

We like to think that we are a friendly and helpful group of people in Edenbridge U3A. The following guide is set out to help you to contact the right person by email. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

For general enquiries and information about membership or subscriptions contact:
Estelle Barling
01732 866186

For the Chairman of Edenbridge U3A contact:
Mike Collins

For information about groups contact:
Brian Swift

For new members contact:
Lynn Swift

For information about speakers or apply to be a speaker at a monthly meeting contact:
Molly Ward

For information about finance (not subscriptions) contact:
Sylvia Greenwood

For information about publicity contact:
Christine Byrne

To submit a report for the Edenbridge U3A website contact:
Cathy Booth
For comments or information about the website, equipment or ICT contact:
Stephen Harding

Website Administration

Information for Members and Group Contacts
How to let us know about what your group has been doing.......

This is essential reading for all Group Contacts and Committee Members.

We are streamlining our website administration even more to make it easier for you and for us to get articles on the website even faster and to help you with their preparation.

At our August 2016 AGM we elected a new committee member, Cathy Booth, who will be the new Website Reporter. She will work with Stephen who will continue with the website administration to make our website one of the best in the area if not the country.

You can find out all about this on the Website Administration Page which you will find in the tabs on the Home Page or with a fast link from HERE.

Monday, 15 August 2016

Some information for you

There's a lot going on at the moment in Edenbridge U3A with new groups and a fully updated list of speakers for our monthly meetings almost up to this time next year. You'll find all the details by clicking on the various links on this website.

Our U3A year ended on 30th June and so subscriptions are now a little overdue if you have not yet renewed. If you do not intend to renew, please let our membership secretary know so that we don't bother you anymore.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Groups Page

Do you know about the Groups Page?

What you see here on this page is just the tip of the iceberg in the Edenbridge U3A website. We have a large site linked to this one which is dedicated to information about groups. You can easily access it by clicking on the Groups Page Tab above or going HERE.

You will find information about all of the groups and regular features from our group coordinators. If you haven't been there before, why not have a browse and see what's going on?

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

AGM 2016

AGM Report 2016

Dear Members

The third Annual General meeting was held at Crockham Hill Village Hall on Tuesday 2nd August 2016. Final details were ratified by the Committee on 31st May 2016.

In Short, all agenda items were passed unanimously by the members present. You will find the agenda below and the minutes of the meeting will be published HERE when they are completed. The Chairman outlined what a successful year we had had with now 54 groups and almost 220 members.

There were a few small changes to the committee and you will find details below:-
Chairman    -    Mike Collins
Secretary   -   Michele Harrison
Treasurer    -    Sylvia Greenwood
 Vice Chairman  - Molly Ward
Publicity   -    Christine Byrne
Membership Secretary    -    Estelle Barling
Groups Coordinator - Brian Swift
Business Secretary  - Colin Fairman
New Members Secretary - Lynn Swift
Website Reporter - Cathy Booth
Monthly Meeting Speakers - Molly Ward

Stephen Harding has resigned from the Committee as his three year term is complete and committee members may not continue unless they take up one of the officer roles. It was agreed that he will continue as before with responsibility for the website, equipment, ICT and Communication to assist the executive committee as a non committee member.


For the purpose of considering and where appropriate, and if thought fit, approving the following items
  1. Apologies for absence.
  2. Chairman’s Report.
  3. Approve minutes of the second annual general meeting held on 28th July 2015
  4. Approve Option 1 of clause 7 in the constitution as approved in 2015.
  5. Receive the Treasurer’s Report and approve the accounts for the year 2015/16.
  6. To report on nominations for Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary and put these to the vote.
  7. To report on nominations for the remaining Executive Committee members and put these to the vote.
  8. Approve the annual subscription rates for 2016/17 which the Executive Committee has recommended remain unchanged from 2015/16.
  9. The re-appointment of the Financial Adviser Graham Brown.
  10. Any other business.

The Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 28th July 2015 can be found HERE

The Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 2nd August 2016 can be found HERE

The Constitution which was formally ratified in Item 3 of the Agenda in 2015 may be found HERE

The Independent Examiner's Report to the Executive Committee as Trustees of U3A Edenbridge can be found HERE

The Accounts for the Financial Year 2015 - 2016 can be found HERE
The Membership Fees for 2016/17 remain the same and can be found HERE

We are committed to saving paper and money. Notice of the AGM was sent out to all members by email and by post to those who had requested otherwise. Details of the agenda, minutes, accounts etc were displayed on a screen and the notice board. 

Mike Collins
May 2016
Updated August 2016

Sunday, 31 July 2016

AGM 2016 Thanks

Tuesday 2nd August 2016
2pm - 4pm
Crockham Hill Village Hall

Thanks to all those who attended a very successful AGM!

You will find all of the details and a Report HERE

Saturday, 23 July 2016

1000th U3A Celebration

1000th U3A Celebration

Friends House, Euston Road,  London, 22nd November 2016 starting at 2pm.

Our keynote speakers will be Baroness D'Souza and Eric Midwinter.

Tickets will be £5.

We have a hall with a capacity of nearly 1000 and we would love as many members as possible to join us and make it a celebration worthy of this wonderful organisation.

So please note the date and tell your members. More details will follow including how to apply for tickets.

Lin Jonas
SEO/Company Secretary

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Antiques Roadshow Ightham Mote

BBC One’s Antiques Roadshow at Ightham Mote on Thursday 16 June

We advertised this because we thought it might be of interest to members. We know that a few of you went and avoided the rain including my family. To be clear we had no antiques (probably with the exception of ourselves).

It was a great day out if you managed to dodge the showers especially if you were NT members and like us had a baby with us - that gave us two reasons to be allowed to jump the queues which we were told were the longest the show had experienced in a long time. There must be a lot of antiques in Kent, although some of the things people were carrying required an awful lot of wishful thinking.

One man showed an eastern coffee maker which he bought for £90 which he was told would have a starting price of £2,000. Lucky man.

I think I'll let the pictures do the talking and, if I find out when it is being aired, I'll post it on here.

£2,000 + worth of coffee maker

The queues
Fiona Bruce