Issue 147    Sept 1st   to December 1st 2020

Our U3A has been in place for a little over three years and has over 150 members in their ‘third age’ – that is, retired or winding down from full-time employment, and seeking to further existing interests or explore new ones.  Although not age specific, this tends to mean that the majority fall into the more vulnerable category in relation to the Covid-19 virus.  Unsurprisingly, therefore, our activities like so many others ground to a halt as the lockdown came into effect.

In normal times we run a number of social occasions open to all members – usually a coffee morning with a speaker and Q&A session – and these too have been suspended.  However, the whole concept of the U3A revolves around Groups, smaller gatherings – typically only 5-8 people – who meet regularly to explore their mutual interest.  There are over 20 such Groups ranging from Art, Languages and Creative Writing to Geology, Exercise, Board Games, and more.

Some of the Groups have been able to continue their activities using video-conferencing.  (Note that the Italian Group doesn’t really include a member hailing from the South Seas – that’s just a background you can pull up to pretend you’re on holiday!) The Groups with more physical interests are having to wait to restart their activities, although we are hopeful that Table Tennis will be able to resume soon.

As regards the general open meetings, we are planning to run a trial event online in September with a guest speaker, using the technology to record the event and then make it available via our website.

We did manage to run our AGM – a legal requirement – by post/email, and two important motions were adopted: to put in place an updated constitution, and to re-elect our Officers.  It was also decided to extend the membership year until the end of September 2021 (instead of ending in April), and the full year’s subscription has been halved to £8.  This includes receipt of the regular U3A newsletter.

Please visit our website for up to date information and links to various activities: