. . . NEWSLETTER
This is our Bumper Issue of the year, dealing with our major functions of St Andrew’s Night and Burns’ Night, and including photographs of a great variety of events. Our thanks go to Peter Neale for the St Andrew’s pictures and to Eleanor Huskisson who thoughtfully takes photos at all our other events.
Social, Wed 30 October: Tony Welsh organised a most entertaining - and nostalgic - evening of table games, many of them beautifully crafted by his uncle and still used by the family on special occasions. Bagatelle, for example, was familiar to many but other wooden games were unique. In attendance were Jim Nicol and his son, to display their impressive photographs of the veterans’ D-Day Anniversary Cruise, - attending ceremonies and meeting dignitaries(see pictures). Refreshments - lots of cake!Talk, Wed 20 November: Malcolm Nelson was as entertaining as ever, with Part 3 of “40 Years of Catching Smugglers”. The tricks that criminals attempt beggar belief at times! We law-abiding citizens very much enjoyed the tales, told with humour and rhetorical skill. N.B. If you wish to hear Part 4, let me know as soon as possible since Malcolm is in great demand.St Andrew’s Service, Sunday 24th November: Thanks go to: Mary, for leading the service; Anne Ford for rearranging the Saltire flowers; Una & Sheena for decorating the hall and serving coffee & shortbread. President Hugh and the Mayor of Slough read the lessons; the Mayor and her consort stayed and socialised with the congregation over coffee.St Andrew’s Dinner & Dance, Sat 30 November: A very happy atmosphere prevailed throughout the evening in the comfortable surroundings of Maidenhead Golf Club. Our guest speaker was Paul Lea (an ambassador for LIFELITES who provide computers for children with learning difficulties); music throughout the evening was provided by Strathallan, and George the piper played a set of tunes between courses in addition to piping in/out the President and the haggis; Una despatched the haggis with flair, Tony Welsh toasted ‘The Toons’, Mike Scott was the amiable (but firm!) toastmaster, and Bob Oxtoby led the dancing; Naomi Hennessey performed 2 Highland dances in the interval which was also when the raffle was drawn (thank you, Eleanor, Alan & friends). The meal itself received very many compliments, even more than usual, so we are delighted that MGC can accommodate us again -on 28 November 2020.Christmas Party, Wed 18 December: Mulled wine, games, entertainment, dancing and, of course, generous refreshments - all these contributed to a very jolly seasonal party. Thank you, Alan & team.
New Year Lunch, Sat 4th January 2020: A delicious plentiful lunch, as ever, by Jacky Williams and her trusty team, plus 2 hours of entertainment, charades, dancing, etc. Auld Lang Syne was sung promptly at 4pm - and within minutes the Christmas decorations were dismantled, with thanks to all for their help.Quiz, Wed 15 January: Alan Goddard always includes an interesting mix of questions, delivered with good humour and patience. The paper plane competition provided further amusement! After our mental exertions, the shared supper - always plentiful and tasty - was much enjoyed.Burns’ Supper & Ceilidh, Saturday 25th January: As anticipated, a highly enjoyable evening. Our piper - Cameron, aged 14 - was accompanied by his younger brother on the drum; they were nervous but completed their duties beautifully. Una gave a rousing Address to the Haggis, David MacLeod (President of the Clan MacLeod Society of England) spoke informatively and entertainingly in his Toast to the Immortal Memory, Fergus Bain from Maidenhead toasted The Lassies, with a confident Reply from our own Cath Hockley. Even after an abundance of very tasty haggis, guests were very willing to join in the dancing afterwards which was interspersed with items from The Three Thistles, 2 Burns’ poems recited by David MacLeod, a comic reading by Andrew Sutton and - of course - a performance of Una’s mini-play by the SADS, this year introducing many new actors. Thanks go to Una for a very successful evening.Talk, Wed 5th February: Ian Grant held us captivated for over an hour with his inspiring presentation on “ Medical Detection Dogs”. Some dogs detect diseases in a controlled lab setting, others are assigned to individuals with a life-threatening condition to warn them of an imminent ‘episode’. Ian’s wife Jane brought along Ralph (a Golden Labrador who slept peacefully during the talk!) and looked after the sales table - which did a roaring trade. A very substantial Shared Supper completed a very special evening.Dancing: There has been a pleasing attendance at the Dance Classes. Our ‘outreach’ has included 2 groups of Guides in Windsor, Winkfield Brownies and Burnham Beavers. We thank Lesley, Dick, Una, Douglas, Alan, Eleanor & Carol for giving time and effort to introduce these youngsters to our dancing.
Long-standing members will remember Chas Coombes, an Honorary member of our Society whose tall figure was outstanding in the Dance Team for many years. He retired to Scotland but retained a close interest in the Society. He has died, aged 93; his funeral was held in his home town of Warrington.
We look forward to seeing you soon.
Carol Berry, Hon. Secretary