May Meeting – Gardeners Question Time

WI_May01 WI_May09 WI_May22 WI_May25We were delighted to welcome our very own FGWI expert gardeners at May’s meeting. Based on Radio4s Gardener’s Question Time, Jan, Janet, Penny, Dina and Cathy answered a variety of questions and gave us a few gardening tips. (e.g. don’t throw your banana skins away, they’re good for the roses . Chat to the slugs and snails and ask them whether they want to move away. Putting bran, egg shells & copper bands around your plants deters slugs and snails.) these were some of the tips we learnt on Tuesday as  well as a seed swap and plant sale (proceeds of the plant sale are on their  way to Nepal).
It was a fun lively evening which we may repeat.


Annual Meeting

We had a great AM with the help of Jane Bird, the WI Advisor from Essex

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The new committee were formed.
They are: Adzovi Nyanyo,
Barbara Lumsden,
Elaine Odlin,
Emma Tate,
Hellen Stack,
Karen Kershaw,
Kathy Lancaster,
Laura Glendinning,
Sally King,
Sarah Jaggs,
Stella Wybron
Vicky Grainger.
They will hold the posts for the next twelve months. Exciting times ahead.

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The meeting was followed by People Bingo – a great way to meet and find out about other members, a handful of members admitting to unusual middle names

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We have an exciting 12 months ahead, with the centenary party, bunting, 100 tips and good deeds, trips to the theatre, cocktail clubs, hopefully craft club will resume soon.
Cinema club, the walking group and supper club are all up and running.

March Meeting – Focus E15 mums


We had a thought-provoking talk from Sarah Kwei from Focus E15 mums.

Focus E15 mums started in October 2013 when 29 mums from the hostel (Focus E15) received eviction notices due to funding cuts.
Newham Council said no housing was available in Newham and they would be rehoused but up to 200 miles away. They decided to stick together and refuse this and after the protests every mother was rehoused in Newham.

The campaign continued. Things like the one year contracts that were given were not good enough with children to settle in school.

The Carpenter’s Estate was largely emptied ostensibly on the back of the Olympics but was not used and the housing remained empty so the land could be sold.
In 2014 the occupation began and the group was astonished to find that the flats although long term empty were in good, liveable condition.
The occupation was planned for two weeks and the bond of community grew.
The group had to go to court to avoid eviction before the scheduled two weeks and following this, Newham Council changed tone and said 40 homes would be given to families.

A great deal of experience has been gained and this is shared with other groups in similar situations across London in addition to marshalling eviction resistance through social media and helping families progress to a better deal.

There were many questions asked during a Q&A session following Sarah’s talk, the one that brought the biggest gasp was “How many flats remain empty on the Carpenter’s?” “About 600.”

Give support by visiting the street stall in Stratford every Saturday outside Wilkinson’s.

Sarah had hoped to show some film footage outlining their work but we were unable to arrange this, I hope to be able to give a viewable link either as a post script on here or in the newsletter.

Further information may be found on their webpage, Facebook or Twitter



February Meeting

10906530_10152753855861884_2461144076072362507_nFor our February meeting we had a talk and slide presentation from Christine Hodgson who is a guide at Chelsea Physic Garden.

The garden has Tardis proprtions in that such a lot seems to be fitted into a central London location.

Christine has been a guide there for several years and is very knowledgeable about the individual plants, their uses in medicine and the wider groups they belong to.

Well worth a visit

Members also had a chance to contribute ideas to future programme ideas and who they would feel would be an inspirational speaker, the ideas were to be part of the discussions on the committee awayday.




January Meeting

We began the new year with a quiz night, Sharon who runs a regular quiz night at the Golden Fleece led a lively session.

For so early in the year we had a good turnout with 8 tables 10 (or almost) on each table.

Here are the winners “The Troublemakers”