Monthly Archives: March 2014

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Secretary’s Report

Chairman Roger Bancroft opened the meeting by offering five apologies from absent members. He gave a news update on one former member and one current member. Dr. Edward Broadhead Chairman in 2000 and renowned expert on insects and plants now lives in London and had written to Mrs Mountford about George’s death. He has happy memories of the Forum and is still going strong at the age of 94 pursuing bugs in Kew Gardens as opposed to Harlow Carr. Alan Norton has now recovered from his pre-Christmas fall and living happily at Belmont House Starbeck. He hopes to attend a number of meetings next season and thanks all members who helped when he attended regularly particularly naming Tom Snelling, Roland Moor and George Wells. Secretary Neil Ramshaw gave advance notice of the A.G.M. on April 29th and advised members to submit any proposals for tabling and discussion to him in the next two weeks.

A returning Speaker Mr Tony Burkitt informed today’s audience with his talk ” The Rush For Wind ” which was a study of the rationale for wind farms. This was presented in an even handed fashion and covered climate change issues, carbon emissions and looked at the statistical changes of the last two centuries. He demonstrated the impact of countries such as the U.S.A. and China with their conventional energy dependencies whilst also looking at the U.K.’s record and the changing usage mix in the last 30 years which now sees transport as the biggest area of concern. Renewables in this country currently account for well under 10% of energy usage (Wind Farms 1.5/2% ) whilst having signed up in the E.U.  to a 15% target for these sources by 2020. He looked at the economies and efficiencies of Wind Farms onshore and off shore highlighting the lack of consistency in their productive usage, their associated costs including subsidies which are paid for by consumers and showed some calculation of the number of turbines needed to increase energy production to target and beyond over the forthcoming years. The talk and accompanying slide show with its associated facts and figures stimulated the Forum’s thought processes and led to a number of questions and comments at its conclusion.

The Vote of Thanks was given by John Corby on behalf of the 33 attendees.

 

NEIL RAMSHAW   SECRETARY

 

 

Secretary’s Report

The third open meeting of the season and also the “Ray Coggan Memorial Meeting” was called to order by Chairman Roger Bancroft who welcomed all attending and in particular the nine lady guests who it was particularly pleasing to see. Three apologies for absence were offered and members were reminded that John Taylor was looking for four or five members to give ten minute talks on Members Morning on April 8th . Mention was also made of a Spring Fayre at the Church Hall this coming Saturday at 10a.m. with homemade cakes being a highlight!!

The Speaker for today’s meeting was a returning favourite  Mr Ken Humphreys who was to share the “Music of Cole Porter” with the assembled throng. Amongst the pantheon of great songwriters from that era such as Gershwin, Romberg and Berlin, Cole Porter stood out because of his privileged upbringing . Born in Peru, Indiana he came from a wealthy family and in 1916 he saw his first and unsuccessful production”See America First” open and close on Broadway in a two week period. In 1919 he married Linda Lee Thomas also from a very comfortable lifestyle and with luxury apartments in Paris, expensive rented accommodation in Vienna they enjoyed the good life. Throughout the late 1920’s and 1930’s Porter was memorably linked to many famous shows and some of the songs and standards continue to be enjoyed by appreciative audiences to the present day. Ken Humphreys then delighted us with a number of great songs from terrific shows performed by outstanding artistes such as “Lets Do It” from Paris; “Anything Goes” from Anything Goes; “It Was Just One Of Those Things” and “Begin The Beguine” from Jubilee with performers including Fred Astaire; Tony Bennett ; Ethel Merman and Frank Sinatra (“I Get A Kick Out Of You”). In 1937 Porter was seriously injured in a horse riding accident which left him an invalid for the rest of his life but he continued his songwriting career through the 1940’s and 50’s perhaps not as productively but still with some outstanding numbers in shows and films e.g. Kiss Me Kate and High Society. Cole Porter passed away aged 73 in 1964 but his memory and legacy lives on and will continue to do so whilst there is an appreciation for top quality and entertaining music and songs.

The thoroughly entertaining morning’s proceedings were much enjoyed by a larger than normal assembly and the Vote of Thanks was given by Ken Roberts on behalf of the 43 members and guests. He also paid his own tribute to Ray Coggan which was well received by all.

NEIL RAMSHAW    SECRETARY

Secretary’s Report

Chairman Roger Bancroft brought the meeting to order by announcing three apologies. He reminded members of the Local  and Family History Day this coming Saturday at the Pavilions of Harrogate and the possibility of sharing John Taylor’s sandwich!!

Today’s speaker was Mr Roger Nightingale from Kirby Malzeard who would share his experiences as an “Olympic Volunteer” at London 2012. His talk was split into two parts with part one being about how he became a volunteer and what he did. He reminded the audience of the long lead in time from London securing the 2012 nomination ahead of Paris at Singapore in 2005. His journey as an Olympic Volunteer started with his  interview at Gateshead; initial training at Hackney; collecting his uniform in West Ham and then more specific training at Lords Cricket Ground for his role looking after the radio communications ( walkie-talkies ) and at the venue where the Archery contests took place with the Olympics themselves running from 27th July 2012 to 14th September 2012. From a volunteer standpoint much was done on a shoestring budget apart from the provision of uniform, meals when on duty and some limited transport arrangements. It was therefore incumbent on him to make much use of his own transport  requirements by good use of his bus pass, budget coach and rail travel and the ubiquitous Oyster card when in London. He was fortunate in having a daughter living in the capital and was able to utilize her accommodation for his own domestic situation during the Olympics.  The second part of his topic centered on the “Experience of a Lifetime” with reminisces amongst other things of the other volunteers he met from home and abroad, people he met including Paul McCartney and some of the sights of London he experienced during this period.He touched on the security issues caused by GS4’S failures and the use of the Army and Police to support. He shared some technical terms from the Archery  Contests with us and we now know what a Kisser, Lady Paramount and Re curve Bow are!!More importantly we were reminded of some of the splendid memories from those highly successful Games and Roger transmitted some of his own personal enjoyment over to us. The talk was well illustrated with pictures and some appropriate music. The subjects covered raised enthusiastic questions and comment at the conclusion.

The Vote of Thanks was given by Roy Smith on behalf of the 32 attendees.

NEIL RAMSHAW  SECRETARY

Secretary’s Report

The meeting was opened with three apologies being offered by Chairman Roger Bancroft. Last weeks prospective new member Richard Wright today became a full member and is welcomed to the Forum numbers. Two notices were announced to the audience, the first being a request for old bicycles for Jame Stamford on behalf of Marie Curie as part of a fund raising exercise–anyone who can help please contact Programme Secretary John Taylor. The second notice was an update on Member Ken Burcher who is home from hospital and in Suffolk to convalesce with his son but he  sent thanks to the Forum for the card that had been sent to him.

Today’s Speaker Mrs Angela Henson , returning for the seventh time, took us on a trip to ” Norway: Land of Mountains and Flowers “. This would involve her on taking us on her various visits ( over a 45 year period ) and a distance of approximately 1,000 miles. We were made privy to some of the splendors of the Fjords, the capital Oslo, Trondheim  the Royal Capital  and its great museums and Town Hall building and Viglen’s sculptures in Frogner Park. Stavanger was the first port of entry and the base for the Norwegian oil industry and we then moved on to Bergen which was built on a number of hills and still possesses its charming old wooden 18th century houses. To our delight Angela shared the discovery of a mini Fountains Abbey 15 miles from Bergen and founded by the same family of Cistercian monks associated with our more immediate locality. The Oslo–Bergen Railway of 1909 , electrified in 1964 was shown and pointed out that it never fails to run!! Some of the incredible roads in the country were also shown and discussed as were another standout feature Stave Churches. Viking Hall Ice Rink at Lillehammer was the only permanent building from the 1994 Winter Olympics , the rest of the buildings used having been transported around Norway for use as other things.. We enjoyed pictures of elks, reindeer, various mountains, the Hardangervidda plateau , lakes and glaciers and a wide selection of Norwegian flora such as glacial buttercups, King Charles candlesticks, blind campions and various orchids including the Lady Slipper. The presentation was accompanied throughout by a range of excellent slides and provoked interesting and thoughtful questions and comment at the end.

The Vote of Thanks was given by John Taylor on behalf of the 32 attendees.

NEIL RAMSHAW SECRETARY