Parkham WI is a thriving and diverse group of around 40 members ranging in age from late 20s to over 90. Part of the Devon Federation of WIs, the rich and varied programme of speakers and events at Parkham provides a broad range of subjects to interest all. It’s an inclusive, friendly and sociable group and there is so much friendship and support for each other demonstrated whenever we meet. Plenty of opportunities to chat over tea and coffee with homemade cake and biscuits – always a lively and enjoyable time and there is an annual lunch where partners are also included.
Some notable meetings in recent times have included a highly interactive talk by Exmoor Zoo (all sorts of creatures came to visit!); croquet and cream tea at Tapeley Park; an Indian cookery demonstration and tasting; a talk about the work of the North Devon Air Ambulance; an insight into the work of the wonderful ChemoHero charity with a bring and buy sale afterwards to support the charity; walking tours of Bideford learning about the fascinating history of our town… there have been too many special evenings to list them all, but the forthcoming programme is looking great too.
The weekly programme of ‘Walk and Talk’ caters for all abilities, with interesting local walks ranging from short and level so that walkers can turn back when they’ve had enough to day-long walks on Dartmoor and Exmoor for those with a bit more energy to burn! A fortnightly gathering of singers has proved most popular with regular requests for small performances locally. We have such fun singing together, laughing, drinking tea and chatting – we all agree that we leave feeling uplifted and happier.
After what has felt like a VERY long time, we were finally able to meet for a proper WI get-together in the Allardice Hall in September and thirty happy Parkham WI members were delighted to be back together once again. Our new President, Nicky Williams, introduced herself to those who were new to the group, and conducted our first face-to-face business meeting for nearly 18 months. The committee members are remaining for now and will be re-elected in April. After some discussion, we voted to continue our monthly raffle, and we will decide as a group how the funds raised by this activity should be used in the future.
As things are starting to get back to normal, it was agreed that our lovely singing group would restart soon, fortnightly on a Monday evening in the Methodist Chapel. It will be more informal that previously, and Nesta will join the group rather than lead from the front! Walking will also start again in November on the first Wednesday of the month, Nicky will send out details of the programme soon.
Parkham WI will be hosting a tea in the Allardice Hall to celebrate World Kindness Day. It will be on Monday 15th November from 2pm and copious quantities of cake are guaranteed! All welcome.
We spent a very happy time introducing ourselves to our new members and then holding an interactive and highly enjoyable quiz to end the evening. Big thanks to Nicky for her hard work in organising our first proper meeting which was obviously much enjoyed by all who attended. We are always glad to welcome new members, and anyone interested in joining our friendly group should call Nicky on 01409 240168. Our next meeting, with a speaker, will be on Thursday October 7th at 7.30pm.