Sutton Women's Institute

 

Sutton WI meets every second Tuesday of the month at 7.30pm in Sutton Village Hall.

 

New members are always welcome.

Sutton WI Committee 

President         - Janet Potter Tel:01767262118

Treasurer         - Catherine Brown

Secretary         - Pat Thwaites Tel:01767261016

Minutes/Press - Cynthia Brewerton

Programme     - Jackie Ryan

​                         - Ann Fowler

Hall Rep           - Ellie Daniels

WI Programme 2019 / 2020

2019

 

Oct   8th: Gordon McCann - Samaritan's Purse.

Oct 29th: Sutton hosts the group meeting - Christine Adams, "Miss Savidge moves her house".

Nov  8th: Soups and sweets evening - Catherine's house, 7pm start.

Nov 12th: David Longman - Churches of Bedfordshire. The weird, the wonderful and the curious.

Dec 10th: Alison Ross - New Age Kurling

2020

 

January: Annual dinner - location and date tbc.

Feb 11th: Kate Gardener - The National Garden Scheme reference to Beds Gardens.

Mar 10th: Ellee Seymour - The sales girl - 1940s to 1960s in a ladies' department store in Cambridge.

Apr 14th: AGM. Caron Brooks - make-up talk and demonstration.

May 12th: Chris Ward - 101 things you never knew about garden birds.

News

Miss Savidge moves house

29/10/2019

Firstly the ladies of the seven WIs present at the Sandhills Group meeting paid tribute to Sutton’s past president and long term member, Marion Irons, with a one minute silence when they met for their yearly meeting hosted by Sutton WI last week, on 29th October.

 

The meeting was very well attended with over seventy members present. It began with a fascinating talk given by Christine Adams and entitled ‘Miss Savidge moves house’. Christine is the aunt of Miss Savidge, an eccentric lady who literally moved her old house beam by beam and nail by nail from Ware in Hertfordshire to Wells-next-the-Sea when the County Council threatened to compulsorily purchase it. The original house was built in 1450 and was apparently owned by a wealthy monk.  Despite much badgering and lobbying Miss Savidge lost her battle with the authorities and so set about the enormous task of moving her house. She was said to have said, ‘I might as well…..I’ve got nothing to do all day’. Miss Savidge was an inveterate hoarder and kept every transaction and communication she ever received or sent, all neatly filed in old copies of the Radio Times, some written on the backs of Kit Kat wrappers! She was determined that her home would be rebuilt and was seen scaling scaffolding into her late seventies, sometimes helped by local fishermen.  She died in 1970 and left the house to her nephew but it was his wife Christine who undertook to finish it.  She was able to sell some of the memorabilia her aunt left to help finance the task. Christine has written a best-selling book about this extraordinary story and a film may also be made.

 

The meeting continued with all seven presidents giving reports on the year’s events and then sharing the delicious refreshments that were made by members of Sutton WI. It was a marvellously successful evening which was very much enjoyed by everyone.

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

Samaritan's Purse

7/10/2019

On October 8th at 7.30pm, Sutton WI met as usual at Sutton Village Hall. The speaker at the meeting was Gordon McCann who gave an interesting talk about the Samaritan’s Purse organisation. This is an international body that offers physical and emotional support where natural disasters may have occurred or in war-torn areas where there is need. It has twin charities in Canada, the USA and Australia.

 

Gordon showed us slides of some of the places where he has been able to work, sometimes for months at a time. Previously having been a police officer, he is well qualified to be able to adapt to the many different circumstances he has found himself in.

 

Whilst in Iraq he worked in a camp for over 20,000 people providing tents, clothing, generators and desalination units. In Lesbos he was involved with refugees who were fleeing perilous situations in their homelands. He described how upsetting this could be, seeing them arrive in barely seaworthy vessels, unprepared for the journey they had undertaken.

 

Where possible, the charity aims to employ local people to help, thus giving them some possibility of a degree of independence.

 

Gordon was most informative and we valued the insight he was able to give us into the work of Samaritan’s Purse.

 

The next meeting of Sutton WI is to be held on Tuesday 29th October where local WI groups are invited to attend at Sutton Village Hall at 7.30pm. The speaker is Christine Adams who will give a talk entitled “Miss Savage moves house”.

 

Our next regular meeting is on Tuesday November 8th at 7.30pm when David Longman will speak about churches in Bedfordshire - the weird, the wonderful and the curious. Everyone is welcome to attend so we look forward to seeing you there!

 

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

Sutton WI bell-ringing in the dark!

26/9/2019

On Friday 27th September at 7pm members of Sutton WI met in the church in the village to ring the bells for 15 minutes. This has not happened before and the occasion was a commemorative one. The bells were being rung to mark the 100th birthday of the WI in Bedfordshire.

All the towns and villages across the county where there is a WI were asked to do this to make it a truly memorable and special event.  The church was looking lovely with its harvest display and the ladies drank a toast to the WI before taking it in turns to ring the bells. The bells are not conventional in that the four bells are housed in a wooden case which is reached by a narrow wooden staircase. Once there, it was quite dark and torches had to be used to light up the instructions on the wall. The bells are rung in a sequence which changes after all four bells have been rung once.

The occasion was very much enjoyed and a fitting tribute to 100 years of the WI in Bedfordshire.

 

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

Talk on Braille

12/8/2019

On Tuesday 13th August,  Gaynor Tinsdale gave a talk at Sutton WI entitled ‘Working with Children Using Braille’. It was a fascinating talk and members and guests learned a lot. She explained how as sighted people we absorb a lot about life automatically and how children with visual impairment cannot. There is a wide range of visual difficulties with differing levels of severity amongst visually impaired children. Adults recently losing their sight are rarely taught to use Braille for a number of reasons but children benefit from it. Invented by the Frenchman Louis Braille, it provides children with the independence which is crucial for them if they are to function successfully in the sighted world.

 

Braille is based around six dots set out as a grid and initially children need to recognise top, middle and bottom and left and right. Letters are recognised by where they are on the grid.  A Brailler, invented in 1936 is used and the paper is soft so that the dots can be made. Members were given the opportunity to try to decipher some short sentences. Each word has to be read in Braille whereas when sighted people read they miss out words and are able get the meaning. Reading Braille is therefore much more laborious.  In addition, sighted people see the whole word whereas visually impaired people cannot do that. As in sighted reading, prediction plays an essential role

 

Many thanks to Gaynor for such an informative, interactive talk. It was very much enjoyed.

 

The next meeting of Sutton WI will be on Tuesday, September 10th at 7.30pm in Sutton Village Hall. Everyone is welcome so please come along. The speaker will be Beverly Bond who will be giving a talk entitled ‘A History of the English Garden’.

 

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

Sutton WI celebrates its 80th birthday

8/7/2019

​On Tuesday 9th July 2019 Sutton WI celebrated its 80th birthday. We welcomed several guests to this occasion, some old friends and some new. The venue was the village hall in Sutton where the garden there was used and where we ate pizza cooked in the pizza oven by Jackie Ryan, one of our members.

 

To begin the proceedings, we raised a glass of prosecco in honour of the birthday and then began as WI members would have done all those years ago, with 10 minutes of Keep Fit!  Everyone really enjoyed it and thanks must go to Pat Thwaites for organising it and for providing Connor, the personal trainer!

 

Thus energised, the pizzas, salad, strawberries and cream and, of course, the cake were eaten. Thanks must go to Ann Fowler for making the birthday cake so expertly.

 

The evening finished with a showing of a short film which remembered Sutton’s entry into a quilt-making competition in 1995. Some members were most amused to see themselves on the film which was taken nearly 20 years ago! The quilt still has pride of place in the village hall.

 

The next meeting of Sutton WI will take place on Tuesday 13th August at 7.30 pm in Sutton Village Hall. The speaker will be Gaynor Tinsdale and her topic will be about children who use braille. We would be very happy to welcome people to join us so please come along!

Do take a look at the Gallery to see more photos of this celebration.

Letters from the trenches

13/11/2018

Mark Steiner joined us to recount the letters that Walter Croft sent back from the front during the First World War. Being a natural story teller he was able to bring conviction and realism to his task and everyone really enjoyed hearing his rendition of these tragic events as seen through these private letters.

 

The letters themselves were given to the Tower of London by Walter’s sisters. They were often written in pencil on scraps of paper and they offer a very small insight into what it was like in the trenches for this one young man.

 

Prior to the war Walter lived in Derby with his family who were modestly well off. He joined the war initially as a private in the 20th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers. He was offered a commission but he declined it, He trained to become a signalman and in his letters to his family gives vivid descriptions of the conditions under which he and other soldiers served. He talked of dreadful weather, the mostly poor food, the tents and other accommodation they slept in and the mud!  After 3 months at the front he said he felt like a veteran and that many others there wanted to give up. He talked too though of the humour the soldiers shared and of the ways in which they entertained each other.  He wrote and received letters and parcels frequently- at least the postal service was very efficient!

 

As the war went on he was demoted to private for a while owing to a mistake he made and he was wounded and sent home to recover. On his return to France he became an NCO, a corporal, second in command of the Signallers. When he went back to France he was at the Somme where there had been heavy losses. He must have been in a weakened state when at Etaples he received a mortal wound.  He died from it on 7th November 1916 just 23 years old and was buried in France along of course with many others.

 

Our thanks must go to Mark for a very interesting talk. The next meeting of Sutton WI is our Christmas one on December 11th at 7.30pm in Sutton Village Hall where we will be making Christmas crafts.

  

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

Easter baking demonstration

13/2/2018

This month our speaker was Carol Jones who gave us a demonstration of how to make hot cross buns. In addition she showed us some other ideas for Easter cookery. She had been a Design Technology teacher for 42 years and so had some handy hints to pass on to us. For instance if you add vitamin C powder to your yeast mixture it cuts down the time that the dough needs to prove. Carol provided us all with a recipe sheet so I expect we will all be trying our hand at making hot cross buns in the coming weeks.

In addition she showed us some other ideas for Easter cookery including ways to decorate cup cakes and making Easter biscuits. She also touched on making chocolate lollies and chocolate eggs.

Delicious refreshments were provided and the meeting closed at 9.30pm.

 

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday 13th March when our speaker will be giving a talk entitled ‘Jewellery by Design ‘ which focuses on remodelling sentimental gold pieces. Anyone interested is more than welcome to attend, so please come along and join us!

Cynthia Brewerton, Press Secretary

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