Bulletin no. 24 (December 2019)

We send Season’s Greetings to all our members and wish you a very happy 2020 and a year of continuing enjoyment in our U3A.

Monthly Meetings

Thursday 12 December 2019
Oonagh Gay: The pioneer women MPs

After a long struggle, women over 30 gained the vote in 1918, but little thought had been given to the prospect of women MPs. The first few women who managed to be elected were resourceful and brave. Nancy Astor is well known, but have you heard of Margaret Wintringham or the Duchess of Atholl? In 1929 only 14 women were elected out of a House of over 600 men, and it took until 1957 for Hornsey to get its first woman MP, Muriel Gammans. This talk will bring to life some of these early pioneers who had to navigate a Commons not designed for them.
Oonagh Gay retired from the House of Commons Library in 2015, after 30 years, having researched for MPs on constitutional subjects. She retrained as a tour guide and now leads history walks around London, focusing on women and radical themes. She runs the CEDU3A Shorter Walks Group.

Thursday 9 January 2020 – Andrew Ellis: Art UK: Democratising Access to the Nation’s Art

Andrew Ellis will give an illustrated talk about an ambitious project to catalogue and digitise the nation’s art collection from over 3000 venues across the UK, describing what has been discovered, telling the stories behind a number of the nation’s paintings and sculptures and explaining how people can get involved. At least 80% of the nation’s art collection is in store or in buildings without routine public access.
Before Art UK started its work, much of this art had not been photographed. This project is opening up the national collection of art, making what is publicly owned, publicly accessible.
Andrew Ellis has been Director of Art UK since 2003, with responsibility for the overall strategic planning and direction of the organisation.

Our monthly meetings are held on the second Thursday of the month at Union Church and Community Centre, Weston Park, N8 9PX. They are open to all members (please bring your membership card) and you are welcome to bring a guest: it is possible to join at the meeting. Talks start at 10.45am; tea and coffee are available from 10am – please bring your own cup or mug.
Further details: https://cedu3a.org.uk/monthly-meetings

Union Church has recently invested in proactive health and safety by acquiring a life-saving Defibrillator, which is located on the wall of the Ramp Access corridor upstairs.

Social events

Seventy members and guests enjoyed a great evening at our recent 50s/60s Dance Night. Our live band gave us a terrific selection of songs and a very enjoyable trip down memory lane. Many thanks to the band and to all those who came for making it a fun and successful night.


Following this year’s Christmas Companions initiative, the festive season is much longer than Christmas Day itself and may be quieter than some would like. Friends and acquaintances may be otherwise occupied and classes cease over the holiday period, reducing the opportunities for social contact over at least two weeks.

With this in mind, I am offering an event or activity for Monday 30 December, timed during the Twixmas period, for example a cafĂ© meet-up, outing or walk. Please let me know if you’d like to be kept informed of plans.

Roslyn Byfield (Executive member and convener of the Outings Group) roslyn.byfield@live.cop.uk 07896 268349

Coffee Mornings

These monthly get-togethers, held in people’s homes from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm, are a great way to meet other members. There is one space for the special meeting on December 17, and a couple of spaces for January.

To book please contact Jacki on https://cedu3a.org.uk/coffee-mornings/

There are currently no further coffee mornings scheduled, as we need hosts from February onwards. If you would like to host a morning (the day of the week is your choice), or would like any further information, please contact Jacki, as above.

First Monday Pub Lunches

Our pub lunches are held on the first Monday of every month at the Mossy Well in Muswell Hill. They provide an opportunity for members to meet and chat in an informal and social atmosphere. Members will of course have to pay for their own food and drinks. If you would to come along, please email pub@cedu3a.org.uk

Membership Renewal

We have recently sent renewal notices to members whose subscription runs out at the end of this year. Thank you to all those who responded for Gift Aid. We are still happy to hear from anyone who is eligible but has not yet informed us.


Current Affairs Group 2
A second Current Affairs Group meets monthly on the first Wednesday of the month, from 11am-12.30pm at a house in Muswell Hill, to discuss politics, current affairs, cultural and social developments. Our aim is to shed more light than heat on the topics under discussion. Members suggest one or two topics per meeting and once agreed one person undertakes to circulate one or two interesting articles to stimulate the discussion. If interested please apply via the website at cedu3a.org.uk/current-affairs-2/
New Intermediate/Advanced Italian Conversation Group
The new Italian Conversation Group will now be Intermediate/Advanced and we would like to gauge interest in this. Please contact newgroups@cedu3a.org.uk if you would like to join. You need not reapply if you expressed an interest last month.

Remember that if you are interested in any of our many groups, you can find full details on our website, together with details of how to contact the convener. Go to https://cedu3a.org.uk/interest-groups/

Writing Groups’ book of short stories

Thank you to everyone who has bought a copy of the Writing Groups’ book of short stories Reflections and Echoes. So far, we have sold 189 books and raised over ÂŁ900 for CARIS Haringey, a local charity for homeless families. The eleven remaining books will be on sale at the monthly meeting on December 12: ÂŁ5 minimum donation per book. Three ways to pay – cash, cheque payable to CARIS Haringey or proof of online payment at https://www.carisharingey.org.uk/ – click on Donate Now.


Thank you so much for your offers of help, we need just a few more members …
Your success so far…
We had 23 responses about the membership roles of deputy and administrative help, which we are currently following up.
We had one volunteer to help at Monthly Meetings and with the projector: if anyone would be prepared to share this role, please let us know.
Social events – two people are happy to help out but not take on overall responsibility; we will be putting their offer to good use.
External Relations Group – we have two and maybe three people willing start up this new venture. We could still use one or two more, especially people willing to write up notes of our Monthly Meetings. Contact Sue (chair@cedu3a.org.uk) or Sally (vicechair@cedu3a.org.uk) for more information.

We still need members to help with:

Equipment Coordinator
We need someone to coordinate the booking in and out of storage of our audio-visual equipment and ensure everything is working properly. The equipment will be used by groups and at our regular open meetings. Time commitment: 1-2 hours a week at most: this can be done from home, basic IT skills needed.
Volunteering coordinator
We need one person or a small team to work with our Database Coordinator as a point of contact for those offering their skills and interests to see where these can best support the work of CE&DU3A. Some experience of working in teams would be helpful.
Time commitment: 2-3 hours a week at most and will depend on demand, less if we have a small team; needs to be IT literate.
For more information on these two roles, contact Sue (chair@cedu3a.org.uk)

Community listings

Organising a concert, gig or art show (or something completely different)? Here’s a chance to publicise it via our website’s Community Listings section (https://cedu3a.org.uk/community-listings/). Entries (50 words or less) should include your U3A group(s), membership number (which won’t appear) and link. The listings are open to CE&DU3A members only, for non-U3A events: nothing religious, political or profit-making. For further details, or to submit a listing email Chris Howe: listings@cedu3a.org.uk

Social Media : Facebook

We know that many of our members are in choirs, bands or orchestras and will be performing at various concerts over the festive period. We love hearing about these and one way to promote them is to post events on our CE&DU3A Facebook page. If you are a Facebook user, just go to the page and post a description or a screenshot of a flyer in the comments box. If you are not a Facebook user, then please send details to facebook@cedu3a.org.uk and we will post them on your behalf. https://www.facebook.com/groups/300181150556772/

External Events

U3A Study Day 10 January – Interest Groups Matter
A National Workshop organised by the London Region of U3As. This interactive workshop has been designed to generate discussion and ideas around running and coordinating effective groups.
Objectives include:
to discuss and identify the role of group leaders/convenors
to discuss and identify the role of the Groups Coordinator
to discuss and agree what constitutes participative learning
to consider how this can impact on learning
to analyse the barriers to learning and consider how to ensure that groups are accessible.
Who should attend?
This event will be useful for committee members, particularly the Groups Coordinator, potential committee members and those in or considering the group leader/convener role.
The workshop, facilitated by Third Age Trust volunteers, will be participative and attendees will be encouraged to network and share their experiences with those from neighbouring U3As. There is no cost for attendance. Lunch and refreshments will be provided. Refreshments will be available from 10.30am.
Date and Time : Friday 10 January 2020 11.00 – 3:30
Venue: National Union of Journalists (NUJ) Headland House 72 Acton St London WC1X 9NB
Tickets: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/interest-groups-matter-london-tickets-83639840013