December 2022

 December opened with a lively discussion at Book Club of the much-enjoyed Love after Love by Ingrid Persaud. The following week our annual Christmas party was kindly hosted once again by Frances – with all the members contributing to an outstanding ‘bring & share’ buffet. The charades were a touch challenging (‘The Shawshank Redemption’ anyone?!) but prizes were eventually won and Secret Santa gifts shared.

Tennis doubles continued in Queen’s Park throughout the month – with play only stopped once by the ice & thick snowfall. Friday park walks took in Queen’s Park, Gladstone Park, a spectacularly beautiful winter walk on West Heath, and Kensal Green Cemetery, giving much-needed escapes from the pre-Christmas rush – not to mention excellent opportunities for a good natter!

November 2022

November has been a busy month with four new members elected to the committee although we were sad to see Louise, who has had many committee roles and always filled the gaps step down from the committee.  Time to enjoy being a member!  We had a record 18 at Dining Club in Willesden Green this month, very efficiently organised by our new Dining Club Rep, Desi.  We started our Friday park walks again, followed by the most important part – coffee and a chat!

October 2022

The month got off to a great start with a talk on the Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Beekeeping by our very experienced beekeeping member, Patricia.  Patricia brought along an observation hive and it was amazing to see the bees up close.  Janet hosted Craft Club and Rebecca led a walk around Roundwood Park with coffee afterwards.  There was another walk across Riddlesdown, Kenley, Coulsdon commons, which led onto Happy Valley and then we had a fantastic view back to the city of London from Farthing Down.    I think everyone enjoyed our book choice, Michael Rosen’s Many Different Kinds of Love.  Fifteen of us went to see Handbagged at the Kiln theatre, made memorable as we went on the day the then Prime Minister resigned!

September 2022

This month got off to a great start with an outing to see the Feminine Power exhibition at the British Museum, which was much enjoyed by all.  Next we had a fabulous stall at the Queen’s Park Festival, with many of our members helping either by baking or on the stall and it was great to meet so many people from Queen’s Park.   Next we had a really therapeutic Tai Chi taster session with Sam at St. Anne’s.   We celebrated National WI day with a walk around Gladstone Park followed by coffee.   Our longer September walk took us over Oxshott Heath and Esher Common with a pub lunch stop on a lovely Autumn day.    Last but not least was a very popular and enjoyable meal in Ravels in Hampstead.  Several members are planning to go back.

July and August 2022

We had another fabulous picnic in Queen’s Park with lots of food and drink to share.  Our Summer continued in August with an outing to Eastbourne to enjoy traditional British seaside treats including a fish and chip lunch.    Craft Club resumed in person in July and August with the lovely summer evenings in Caroline’s garden.   Dining Club came south to St. John’s Wood and we had a very sociable meal at Crocker’s Folly.  Our monthly meeting at St. Anne’s was a talk by a nurse who had been on the front line during the pandemic and it was great to hear how the staff and community responded to support one another.  Next month we’ll be at Queen’s Park Day, so we’re all planning our baking, come and see us if you’re passing by!

June 2022

We’ve had a great month in June, a fascinating guided walk around Kilburn taking in sights and buildings some of us had never noticed before.  Who knew that Kilburn once had the largest cinema in the country?  We all loved the mural of June Rose Barber.   We rounded off the walk by celebrating our oldest member’s 80thbirthday at a pizza restaurant.   Doubles tennis and more importantly coffee afterwards with our non-playing friends continues to be popular.  We had a really good discussion of Helen Lewis’s  ‘Difficult Women A History of Feminism in 11 Fights’. Everybody enjoyed reading the book and the discussion ranged across many of the topics highlighted in the text, with members focusing on issues which had particularly resonated for them and sharing some personal experiences to illustrate the points that Lewis was making. 

May 2022

Where did May go?  It seems no time at all since the Bank Holiday weekend and we’re definitely into the long evenings now.  We had a super-interesting talk from one of our former members about her work as an architect on renovating the Courtauld Gallery at Somerset House.   The local park walks have continued on Fridays and are very popular.  We had a good  turnout at the Spasso restaurant and  enjoyed real Italian cooking very much.   Our FLAT walk through the Colney nature reserve and along the Grand Union canal was much appreciated, probably helped along by the ice-cream stop towards the end.

April 2022

We started April with a move to our new venue at St. Anne’s in Salusbury Road an excellent talk by one of our members on Quakerism – ‘What Quakers believe and how they put it into practice’, which prompted much discussion.   Tuesday tennis and Friday walks continued as well as a strenuous longer walk across the Chilterns where there were some excellent carpets of bluebells.   Our book club had a long discussion about our book of the month ‘Notes from an Exhibition’.

March 2022

We’ve had a busy month.  We got off to a great start with a talk on the history and personalities of the Pinnacle Club, a women’s climbing club who celebrated 100 years in 2021.  We’ve had several walks, most very ably led by Rebecca around the local parks and one spectacular outing to Kew Gardens to see the Spring flowers, much enjoyed by all.    Another longer walk  through Ruislip woods was enjoyed by all and we made the most of a fine Spring day.  Some of us went off to the V&A to see the much praised Faberge exhibition, which we agreed was fabulous.   Tennis has got going again, having been rudely interrupted by rain on several occasions, so coffee in the park on Tuesdays is back on.  Deb hosted café club through the winter and was enjoyed by all who attended.    Craft and book clubs are continuing via zoom.  Dining Club proved very popular and we went to Dhaba49  in Maida Vale.