Chairman Michael Cochrane opened the meeting on time and advised of three apologies.
Under “Initial Notices” members were advised of the death in London of former Chairman and Member Dr. Edward Bromhead at the age of ninety-eight.
Christmas Lunch bookings were confirmed at sixty-eight/seventy for December 11th.
Today’s Speaker saw Forum Secretary Neil Ramshaw share “Some of my British Sporting Heroes” with the audience. Supported by video clips, photographs and the occasional personal sporting reminisce, past British Sporting Legends from rugby, boxing, athletics, motor sport, snooker and wrestling were revisited. Included were stellar names such as Gareth Edwards, David Hemery, John Surtees, Henry Cooper and Jackie Pallo!! Whilst a nostalgic look back at former sporting giants the talk reflected the Speaker’s enduring and continued affection and interest for all things sporting both as a viewer and a former participant. Questions at the end showed the differences and debate sporting opinion can generate.
The Vote of Thanks on behalf of thirty-nine attendees was given by Richard Brooks.
NEIL RAMSHAW SECRETARY
Today’s meeting started promptly at 1030 a.m. with Chairman Michael Cochrane advising of four apologies. He then read out a letter from our retiring President Reverend Christine Gillespie thanking the Forum for its support to her and the Church and wishing us continued success.
Secretary Neil Ramshaw took a few minutes to reiterate the need for a Second Vice Chairman and more importantly from a time perspective the need for someone to pick up the mantle of Programme Secretary from John Taylor who will not be carrying on in the role after this season but will provide support for the next holder of that office. Members were reminded that it is incumbent on them to ensure these positions are filled and there is no separate management committee that will resolve the matters.
The talk this morning was given by Mr Philip Solity and was titled “An Amusing Insight Into Road Traffic Law”. His fee would be going to St. Gemma’s Hospice. Philip had spent over 40 years as a Legal Adviser in Leeds Magistrate Courts and whist not exclusively on motoring matters much of his time was spent advising magistrates and defendants on those issues.
He started his talk by sharing the Motorists Lord’s Prayer with the audience which set the tone for the morning….at turns amusing, instructive and educational. We learnt about the single justice procedure for guilty pleas; were advised about the various bands of penalties namely A, B and C and the consequences thereof. Speeding Offences; Drink Driving and Mobile Phone offences were covered and the procedures for Speed Cameras disclosed. Some of the loopholes used by famous personalities were detailed but shown to being annoyingly legal.Various knowledge tests were given by Philip on road procedures and laws with responses from members either being reassuring or giving cause for concern!!
The differences between Careless and Dangerous Driving was explained and again the penalties ranging from fines, disqualification to imprisonment highlighted. Driving Capability (affected by illness or disability) was touched upon and the proper/improper use of Blue Badges mentioned. The talk elicited a good number of questions and comment both during and at its conclusion and showed that the audience had appreciated both the amusing anecdotes and knowledge imparted.
The Vote of Thanks on behalf of forty attendees was given by His Honour Judge Derek Clarkson Q.C.
NEIL RAMSHAW SECRETARY
Chairman Michael Cochrane started the meeting with the announcement of five apologies.
Only two places remained available for this year’s Christmas lunch. On Saturday November 17th between 11.00 a.m. and 1 p.m. a Christmas Fayre will be held at the Church.
Last week’s Speaker Mr Stephen Caldwell sends his thanks for the “welcome” he received and hopes to talk to us again at some future date. He also advised that his fee will go to Martin House Hospice.
Today’s Speaker Mr Geoff Queen from Kettlewell is a regular visitor, this being the ninth occasion he has spoken to the Forum. Over the years he has raised £11500 for Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Over the next hour Geoff , supported by his slide show, took us on an A–Z tour of Europe but in the main too some less fashionable places off the beaten track. Starting at A with Annecy and Avignon we stopped at Bayreuth, Carcassonne, Dubrovnik, Formentor, Granada, Krakow, Lisbon, Munich, Prague, Seville, Tallinn Ullswater, Venice, Yvoire and Zürich. Geoff used some “creative accounting” with his E choice being Helsingborg (where Shakespeare sited Elsinore Castle in Hamlet), X became a xtra slide of his favourite picture and I, J, and K were collectively covered under Interlaken!! He told us about Wagner’s influence in Bayreuth and under O showed us the Omaha Beach War cemetery from World War II. At the conclusion of his show the audience felt like they had partaken in a grand tour of Europe without leaving their seats and there was time for some questions and comment.
The Vote of Thanks on behalf of 41 attendees was given by Tom Snelling.
NEIL RAMSHAW SECRETARY
Chairman Michael Cochrane opened the first Open Meeting of the season with a warm welcome to the ten lady guests and also guest Colin Alderton. The Forum also received new member George Hornsea (who likes to be known as Ginger) in the usual manner. Three apologies had been received prior to the meeting.
A reminder that John Taylor was taking Christmas Lunch bookings was given and he was already in receipt of forty-four orders.
Todays Speaker was Mr Stephen Caldwell and his fascinating discourse was “Living and Working in Windsor Castle”. Originally from Bradford where he attended the grammar school Stephen had a varied career taking in the Royal Navy, five years as a maintenance technician at the Halifax Building Society and various positions with other companies before responding to an advert from the Royal Household at Windsor. Two interviews later saw him take up a position as one of the Property Officers with responsibility amongst others of Pension Homes, security of Royal Lodge and Sunninghill Park and the 600 acres of Home Park. He told us about one of his first jobs being the lock on the Queens bedroom door!! Duties included reacting to emergencies, general maintenance, refurbishment of accommodation and “on-call ” emergency duties. His wife had also obtained a royal role namely secretarial working for the Duke of Edinburgh on his award scheme. We were told about attendances at Buckingham Palace Garden Parties; Garter Ceremonies; Duke of Edinburgh Award fund-raising events and Christmas Balls at Buckingham Palace. Being able to use the Royal Box at the Albert Hall and a trip to see the Royal Yacht Britannia in 1996 was also mentioned. Other perks included live in accommodation, the opportunity to purchase maundy money sets and annual gifts from the Queen allowing a collection of minton crockery over the years in addition to the annual christmas card and christmas pudding. Stephen touched briefly on the Windsor Castle Fire of 1992, the devastation caused and the 4 year programme of works to repair.
On his retirement he was awarded the M.V.O. IN 2003. The talk was reinforced with an excellent slide show and questions from the audience at its conclusion.
The Vote of Thanks was given by Peter Staples on behalf of forty-one members and eleven guests.
NEIL RAMSHAW SECRETARY