Trip to Shrewsbury

25 members of our WI, with some friends, joined our long postponed coach trip to Shrewsbury on Wednesday 4th May. We were dropped off at the top of The Dingle/Quarry park, where a gentle downhill stroll took us the beautiful gardens (inspired by Percy Thrower who was Park Superintendent here for 28years), where we saw a wonderful display of sprint bulbs/flowers.

We continued down to the River Severn and along to the ‘Sabrina’ boat, where we had pleasant refreshments and a very informative and picturesque trip along the river loop from the ‘Welsh bridge’ to the ‘English Bridge. We then walked to the centre of the town where we split up so everyone could follow their own interests. Some walked through the medieval quarters and down to the Castle, with great views of the town, and all found interesting and different places for lunch – in Church tearooms, one of the many little eateries in the market area, or in the centre of town.

Retail therapy was another popular pastime, with Lakeland proving very popular. All remarked on the large number of independent shops, and the lack of the empty premises we see in so many places. A really enjoyable and sociable day out.

April 2022 Main Meeting – Different Shades of Green

Our Positive Planet group arranged this evening for us. We split into small groups and 4 members visited each table for 15 min or so to lead a discussion on different aspects of looking after our planet. Pat showed us different potting composts, encouraging us to go for peat free options. Chris joined Kirsty from Weigh of the World in Northwich and talked about zero waste packaging.

Sue explained the life cycle of the huge Bumble Bee we see in our garden at this time of year and Gill showed us environmentally friendly bathroom/cleaning products.

A really informative and sociable evening, thanks to our group leaders for making it so interesting.

Members were given their programme for the coming year, and a pack of sunflower seeds – watch this space in September to see whose grows the tallest. The Darts Team were congratulated on winning the Group League – their trophy was on display.

A calendar of the different activities for the coming month or so was shared– a visit to Smiths garden centre, an outing to Shrewsbury, a garden party at Helen’s, the Cheshire Literary Lunch and meetings of our various subgroups, Lots going on to keep us busy.

March 2022 Main Meeting – Advanced Driving

We had 33 members at our meeting on 3rd March and they enjoyed a very interesting talk from Steve Segar from the Warrington Advanced Driver’s group. He spoke about the role of theInstitute of Advanced Motorists in improving driving standards and about the importance of being aware of hazards when driving.

He particularly spent time on the topics members had asked to be included – the new changes to the highway code and hierarchy of road users, driving at night and smart motorways. There was plenty of lively discussion on these topics.

Members also had the opportunity to sign up for upcoming events including a Scrabble afternoon, a Gardening talk by Sam Yould (retired Head Gardener from Tatton), a Group Flower Arranging demonstration and a proposed trip to Shrewsbury on May 4th.

A subscription of £44 for next year’s membership was agreed.

Our next meeting will be ‘Shades of Green’, where we will meeting in small groups to discuss 4 different aspects of caring for our planet – at last an opportunity to sit down and chat with each other as we emerge from the pandemic.

February 2022 Main Meeting – Dogs for Good

Melanie welcomed 26 members and 2 guests to our 84th Birthday meeting, and introduced our visitor Mary Lamb with her dog Kingsley.

She gave us a fascinating talk about the Charity ‘Dogs for Good’ . They breed and train dogs to help adults and children with disabilities, children with autism and adults with dementia.

She read a poem, illustrated with pictures, about her first dog Yan which gave a great insight into the very special bond which they built together. Yan is now retired and her new dog Kingsley is settling in well with her. They demonstrated how Kingsley helps her pick things up, brings medication etc on command, helps her undress and gives her invaluable support around the house and outdoors.

After a short break Chris Jones showed us the beautiful button tree that Annette and many members have helped create with her. It illustrates the way friendship within Whitley WI blossomed over her 3 years as President.

Mary and Kingsley
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Jan 2022 The Whitley Olympics

To celebrate our first face to face monthly meeting at Whitley Village Hall since August 2020, we decided on a topical theme – the Tokyo Olympics. Pat Sharp organised a most wonderful evening of games, quiz and much more. Lots of smiles and laughter and we optimistically look forward to meeting up again in September.