U3A North West Region Newsletter – March 2014

Newsletter for March 2014       No. 29

 From the Chair

 Thank you for your prompt and enthusiastic response to our last two North West events.  The second Web Masters’ Workshop in St Helens was attended by 20 experienced or brand-new Web Masters and all of them appeared to have benefitted from the experience.  We will run this Workshop again in Penrith on 6 May.  This will be organised by Grete Hughes of Workington U3A, who is the Secretary of the local Network. We are so grateful for this help and it’s exactly the way in which an individual member can support our small Committee.

The Group Leaders/Coordinators Workshop on 3 March had 100% attendance, with 51 members from 23 U3As attending in Manchester and taking an active part in the discussions.

Our next Workshop is advertised in this newsletter – based on several requests to our Trustee as she travels round the Region supporting and advising our members.  “Growth” matters in so many ways: either in a small, struggling U3A, one that has become static or one that is experiencing rapid growth.  We will run parallel sessions for every situation and hope that all who attend will share problems and help to find solutions. 

Sue Watkinson

In this edition of the newsletter you will find

Page 2 – Third WebMasters’ Workshop in Penrith and “Growth Matters to all U3As”, a new Seminar in Warrington,

Page 3 – Details of AGM in Lancaster and Reminder about the Summer School

Page 4 – Trustee topics, other news and Committee details

 A final reminder about this Study Day, there are still places available so do get in touch


(supported by the North West Region)

at the Castle Street Centre, Kendal

on Saturday 29 March 2014 from 10.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.

(Registration from 9.30 a.m.

There will be four presentations:

  • “Starting Family History and how a Family History Society can help”  John Steel.
  • “Wills and how to find them”                                                                           John Harman
  • “Police Ancestors”                                                                                             Chris Payne
  • “World War 1 Ancestors”                                                                                Ken Tulley

Cost: £2, payable on the day, to cover the cost of drinks.  Please bring your own picnic lunch).

The Castle Street Centre is 5 minutes from the town centre, opposite St George’s Church and on the east side of Stramongate Bridge. Unfortunately, there is only limited parking at the Centre, itself. There is some on-street parking nearby and there are multi-storey car parks in the town. For those using satnav directions, the post code of the Centre is LA9 7AD.

The contact person is John Harman on 01995 603232 or email jandcharman@gmail.com

The Deeside and Wirral Network Literary Day.

on Friday 4th April. 10.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m. at Hoylake Community Centre

This is now fully booked and there is a waiting list so if you find you can’t attend, please let the organiser know so that your place can be re-allocated.


For more information please contact Gill on 0151 633 2796 or email grussellmeols@hotmail.co.uk

Web Masters’ Workshop

The work will centre on the U3A Site Builder on Tuesday 6 May from 11.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.

Hot drinks will be provided from 10.30 a.m.

at Penrith Methodist Church in Wordsworth Street, CA11 7QY

Just off M6, Junction 40

Who should attend?

  • Webmasters and budding Webmasters
  • Those interested or involved in creating content for websites

 The day will be led by Jenny Carley, Regional Trustee

There will be on-line demonstrations and opportunities for hands-on experience.

There will be a break for lunch (please bring your own – drinks provided)

Grete Hughes, Secretary to the Cumbria Network, is managing the event on behalf of NWREC.

Register on line using the Booking form  on the North West Website or contact any of the committee

 This Seminar is funded by Third Age Trust

and is FREE to NW U3A Members


At The Gateway, 85/101 Sankey Street, Warrington, Cheshire, WA1 1SR

Monday 28th April 2014

 A set of Three Seminars

  1. U3As concerned about increasing growth
  2. U3As whose numbers are static
  3. U3As whose numbers are declining

 Who should attend?

This day is intended for all committee members who are concerned with the growth of their U3A. The day will be a shared session on Publicity followed by a choice of three separate seminars to share ideas.


Morning session – Publicity

Buffet Lunch provided, (the centre does not allow own food in any of the rooms)

Afternoon sessions

                                Group 1                                U3As experiencing fast growth/larger U3As

                                Group 2 U3As                    which are static/small

                                Group 3 U3As                    with declining growth

 The application form is available on the website

 This Seminar is funded by Third Age Trust and is FREE to NW U3A Members

Caption Competition

Thank you to all who submitted very amusing captions for the tortoise photo.

I have put the captions onto the front page of NW region website – have  a laugh – you know it’s good for you!. They will only be there for the next couple of weeks.

 Jenny Carley, North West Trustee

 AGM and Guest speakers – 10th June

at the Ashton Hall within Lancaster Town Hall

11.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.

10.30 a.m.           Hot drinks will be served

11.00 a.m.           Professor Christine Milligan, Centre for Ageing Research in the Faculty of Health and Medicine at Lancaster University, with an informative approach to the many processes involved as the body grows older

12.15 p.m.           Lunch break – bring your own or go out into the city

1.30 p.m.             The AGM of the North West Region (each member U3A is invited to send two representatives)

2.30 p.m.             Our afternoon speaker is the Story Telling Laureate, Taffy Thomas from Grasmere who will tell us about the importance of storytelling within U3As, illustrated by his own tales.

 Members from all North West U3As are invited to attend to listen to our two speakers and a £5 charge covers these and tea/coffee and biscuits, an application form will shortly be available.

We will be sending out the formal notice of the meeting in early May to all Chairs or Business Secretaries.

The notice will include a nomination form for new members of the Committee and for the officer posts

We need your help to maintain our programme of workshops and seminars – please volunteer

North West Region’s Residential Summer School at Newton Rigg College

Tuesday 26 – Friday 29 August 2014

 Newton Rigg College is an open campus very near to Penrith and just five minutes’ drive from the M6

Ullswater and the Northern Lake District is on the doorstep. 

Digital Photography (Rod Marsh), Geology (Chris Arkwright) now have waiting lists

Places still available on Archaeology (Carol Allen), Art (use of colour-Jacqueline Cartwright), Creative Writing (Maggie Smith), Novels of 1961 (Meg Shaw) and A Musical Journey from Renaissance to Romanticism (Gillian Russell)

The Summer School starts mid-afternoon on Tuesday 26 August and ends with lunch on Friday 29 August. Accommodation is in single, en suite rooms and all meals are provided to residential students.

Day students are welcome too, with buffet lunch, teas/coffees included;

evening meals can be taken at the College for an extra charge

Several of the courses will include a day out (all expenses included) to cover field trips or visits

We have held our prices at £300 (£150 Day rate) with an early bird discount of £40 (£20 Day rate),

provided a deposit and completed booking form is received by 31 March 2014

Full details and application forms are available on the North West website,

or phone David Joseph (member of NWREC) on 01625 861 327 for more information

Trustee Topics – Third Age Trust website – a mine of information! From Jenny Carley, NW Trustee

As many of you know, the national website is a useful resource of all kinds of information from how to build a web site to national events. You may have noticed that it has a new look: much of the same information is there but in different, easier to find places. There are now two areas – a public area and a U3A “members only” area. If you have not already done so you need to create a new login and password. Verification is then sent to you before you may enter the members’ area. If you wish to use the Resource Centre then you must first register as a member and then register with the Resource Centre. Pages on the web site are continually being up dated so it is advisable always to check to make sure you are reading the latest information. Some updates which were done in January 2014 are:

Advice Note 1                    Disabled members

Advice Note 2                    is being updated

Advice Note 3                    Gift aid

Advice Note 14                 Group Leaders, etc

Overview of Insurance Policies

Information Booklets – Committees and procedures

Information for Treasurers

                                                Insurance Information

                                                Interest Groups

                                                Objects and Principles

Please have a look and update your knowledge – and take a look at the video of the AGM/conference last September – to see what you missed.  I hope to see you at the National AGM in Cirencester

Trustee Notes from Jenny Carley, NW Trustee


 This year we have organised seminars/workshops for you, supported your events, taken part in promoting the U3A, started new U3As, answered your queries, organised a summer school, Study days and much more, many of you know just how much more!. We are only six VOLUNTEERS and we cannot continue this level of support unless we have more committee members. It is a serious situation – those of you who can bring expertise, maybe have just left your committee, please ask your U3A to nominate you.

If you feel that you have enough experience to join us on the committee please contact Sue Watkinson. If you don’t want to make the full commitment to the committee we need help to facilitate seminars, organise events, prepare publications and a whole lot more.  Please get in touch.

 Other News

 The 50 Plus Show in Manchester takes place on 28/29 March in Manchester Central (formerly G-Mex),

from 10.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m..  North West Region has a stand and there is a huge amount of information available from other stall holders.  Why not come along and say “hello” to the team while you are there?

 Piano Recital Aughton & Ormskirk U3A was recently entertained by a first-class pianist at their monthly speaker meeting.  Andrew Wilde talked about his life and music and played for over an hour.  The visit was organised with the North West Music Trust, an organisation committed to bringing the wonderful world of piano to all.  If your venue has a piano and you would like to find out more contact nwmusictrust@aol.com or telephone 01942 797225

 The South Lancs Network has successfully negotiated discounted admission tickets for U3A members for the Southport Flower Show.  Advance tickets cost £17 but the reduced price is £13, when bought before 31 July.  Contact details are on line or by telephone 01794 547 147 (£1 fee applies to phone bookings) Use discount code U3A

 Lucy White of Sadlers Wells, London, is looking for dancers and/or choreographers over the age of 60 to take part in a festival at Sadler’s Wells. The Elixir Festival is dedicated to celebrating lifelong creativity and she wonders if any members would be interested in getting involved. The festival takes place in London but they are looking for participants from all over the country. An e-flyer is available, just get in touch.

Tel: 020 7863 8104 Fax: 020 7863 8199   www.sadlerswells.com

The Committee of the North West Regional Executive for 2013/14

Sue Watkinson (Aughton & Ormskirk U3A), Chairman                  01695 422 423

Peter Monaghan (Carlisle U3A), Hon. Treasurer

Beverley Jones (Clitheroe U3A), Hon. Secretary

John Harman (Lancaster & Morecambe U3A)

David Joseph (Macclesfield U3A)

Bill Fowler (Sandbach U3A)

Gillian Russell (Hoylake)

CONTACT ANY OF THE ABOVE via NW Region website www.u3asites.org.uk/north-west or (CTRL+Click) on the link below


Trustee for the North West Region is

Jenny Carley (Chester U3A)                                                                        01244 680 460

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