Data Protection
Data Protection

                                                                                                   Issue 162


Registered charity no. 1108125                                                                                                                          May/June 2022


Newsletter Editor: Elizabeth Stevens                                        newsletter@westoxfordu3a.org.uk           






Welcome to West Oxford U3A


The U3A exists for a group of people to get together to do things with everyone taking equal responsibility.

We meet on the 2nd and 4th Mondays except for July, August and December.  Our ‘year’ begins in September and ends with the AGM, either on the last Monday meeting in May or the first Monday meeting in June.   Once the membership fee is paid there is no further charge, although visitors make a donation.  Membership of West Oxford U3A does not cover membership of Oxford U3A or Headington U3A.


The meetings take place at Dean Court Community Centre, Pinnocks Way, Botley.   The proceedings start at 2.30 pm and (fairly short) notices are given before or after a talk as set out on your programme.  Tea and biscuits are always served after the talk with cake at the end of each term.   Please stay and use this time to get to know new people and meet friends


A list of the Special Interest Groups is on your programme and are open to anyone who would like to join.  Just contact the person referred to as arranging the meetings.  If there is a group you would like to start then, if you think the Committee can give you some help, please ask.


The membership fee entitles you to the West Oxford U3A Newsletter which is sent out every other month, by email or (for those without a connection) by post.  The Newsletter is full of information about forthcoming events, both those arranged by this branch and also those organised by Thames Valley Network.  Please be certain to look at the notice board at the back of the room for additional details of outings and study days and also on www.u3atvnetwork.org.uk as well as this website.


A membership subscription is paid annually to the National U3A office and there is a newsletter which you can subscribe to receive or can be viewed on-line.  If you would like to receive the National U3A newsletter then please contact the Secretary who will tell you the cost.  You are entitled to attend the Summer Schools and other events, details and costs are on the National U3A website.


During the year there is a New Members’ coffee morning for which an appropriate invitation is sent.


Do raise any queries when attending the meetings or write to secretary@westoxfordu3a.org.uk


Lis Froggatt  






A Message from Lis Froggatt, Chairman


What a pleasure it is to meet again in Dean Court, to be able to mix with our members and have the speakers in person. The committee has worked hard to keep our u3a functioning.  During the times when zoom was used for our talks, for which thanks go to Inga Martin for setting it up and running it, and to Mary Gregory for her assistance, and now with actual people, the mutual support of the committee has been vital.


We decided to suspend payment of the membership fee for one year, hoping that members would still return when payment was requested.  There have been a number who for one reason or another have not renewed, but new members are joining all the time.  I hope the word is that we are a friendly and inclusive group, and that we all take the opportunity of the tea and biscuits after the talks to get to know other people.


The Speakers’ Committee has given us a varied and entertaining selection of talks, and already are well advanced with names for our year commencing in September.  They work hard. The Special Interest Groups have had difficulties meeting because of Covid, but are getting underway and always open to new members.  There is no limit to the number or interest of any such group, and if you would like any assistance in setting up another group then do not hesitate to ask.


Monday 24th May is our Annual General Meeting. If you have any matter you would like to air at that meeting then it would be helpful to know in advance. We need more committee members, so please put your name forward, or approach one of the existing committee members, about this.  We need a vibrant committee to provide the best for our members.


My thanks go to all the members of the committee and to all those who help when we meet, the Audio-Visual team, the refreshment providers, those who put out the chairs (and clear them away), and to all who keep West Oxford u3a running so smoothly.


Lis Froggatt





THAMES VALLEY NETWORK  (TVN)                                 Contact: Beverley Birmingham (07799413110)


TVN are still organising plenty of study days via Zoom.  There are a wide variety of topics so there should be something to please everyone.  Please keep looking at the noticeboard at the back of the hall and checking out the TVN study days on the website.


It is hoped that all reps will be meeting again in Benson in July and not using Zoom for further meetings.



YOUR  NEWSLETTER  from Elizabeth Stevens


Please send all contributions, notices, etc. for the next issue covering  July/August 2022 to: Elizabeth Stevens, 104 Kennington Road, Kennington, Oxford OX1 5PE (01865 739252) not later than Friday, 17 June 2022.





Meetings are normally held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month from 2.30 pm onwards. There is always an opportunity for tea and biscuits and a chat from approx 3.45pm.  All are welcome, and we extend an open invitation to any visitors who might like to come along and meet us.  


09 May 2022:            Recital by Launton Handbell Ringers


Music comes in many different genres, and group handbell ringing is one of the less familiar forms for most of us.  For 70 years the Launton Ringers, based in Oxfordshire and Bucks, have not only been maintaining the tradition of handbell ringing but also expanding its repertoire. As well as giving many recitals they have issued a number of CDs showcasing a range of musical styles.


In this session the group will demonstrate the art of handbell ringing, with a history of the bells and their music.  They will accompany that with a recital to demonstrate the versatility as well as musicality of handbells.  There will be an opportunity for members of the audience to participate.  Come along and join in!

23 May 2022:            Shelley Edwards: Keep Safe: Avoiding Conmen and Other Risks 


The fastest growing area of crime and the biggest crime risk to us as ordinary citizens is now the financial scam. The elderly and less tech-savvy are particularly vulnerable. In this talk Shelley Edwards, Liaison Officer at Trading Standards for Oxfordshire County Council, will give us insights into how scammers operate and advice on how to detect scams and protect ourselves against conmen. Let’s keep safe, and avoid being landed in distressing and potentially expensive scams. It is not all gloom and doom; we can learn to take charge and look out for ourselves. 


13 June 2022:            Peter Hague : Inside the World of a Film and Tv Extra 


Peter Hague will tell us about life "Inside the World of a Film and TV Extra". He says that until age and Covid made him stop two years ago he was working as an Extra and as a professional drummer. Nowadays he uses his experience in these fields as a basis for his presentations as well as guiding groups to stately homes in Buckinghamshire where he lives. 

27 June 2022:            Graham Horn – “Heirs and Spares”


West Oxford U3A is looking forward to a visit from Graham Horn, a highly experienced and qualified Blue Badge Tourist Guide and tour leader.  Graham also finds time to research family histories, often of the aristocracy, which provide him with material for his talks.







BRIDGE                                                                                     Contact:  Membership Secretary 


The U3A Bridge Group looks after itself. It has 8-9 regular players of Intermediate level, meeting on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month at the invitation of whoever will be hosting in their home. Players respond directly and make up tables at each session. We are a social, learning group - exploring elements of bidding and play each time we meet and having tea together. Bridge players interested in meeting us for an introductory session or two should please enquire, initially, of Liz Jones, Membership Secretary, membership@westoxfordu3a.org.uk, 01865 202227, who will put you in touch with the next host for an invitation to join us for a trial visit or two. We would be very pleased to meet you.



CHURCHES AND PUBS                                                           Contact Hugh Manson (01865 244175)


The Group resumed on 1 April to the delight of us all after a hiatus of two years. Ten members visited St Michael and All Angels in Blewbury with lunch at the friendly Red Lion after.  Our next trip is to All Saints in Marcham followed by lunch at the Doghouse in Frilford.  There will not be a June visit because of the Jubilee celebrations. 



CINEMA GROUP                                                                      Contact:  Mary Chait (07342964870)


The Cinema Group is back in action.  We have been meeting face to face for a few months now.  It is indeed great meeting up again over lunch at Tumbling Bay Café to catch up and discuss the movies we have seen.

Members are mainly still watching on TV but a few of us have ventured out to the cinema.

We meet on the 2nd Tuesday of every month at 12.00pm at Tumbling Bay Café which is run by a lovely couple, Vladimira and her husband at the West Oxford Community Centre.

We look forward to inviting new members to join us.  If you are interested, please e-mail me at smchait@gmail.com and I will gladly add you to our mailing list.



CRAFT GROUP                                                                          Contact:  Sally Strang (01865 240310) 


The Craft group hopes to meet on Friday, 29 April.  Venue to be confirmed.


DISCOVERING MUSIC  (7 members – new members welcome) Contact: John Grimshaw (01865 861949)


This friendly and sociable group meets in members' homes during the third week of each month, at 2.15 pm.  The host introduces and plays recordings of their own choice, of broadly classical music, usually on CD or DVD. Thus, we have made many delightful musical discoveries, have learnt much, and we freely express our reactions.  We often finish with something of lighter mood.



GARDEN CLUB                                                                        Contact:  Mary Gregory (01865 865887)


The Group visits gardens and nurseries by arrangement – no fixed programme. Winter activities will include sofa-gardening.  All welcome.  Contact Mary Gregory – mary@nandmg.me.uk.


SCRABBLE                                                                               Contact:  Margery Dent (01865 862534)


The group meets mostly on the 3rd Monday of the month or on an agreed alternative, from 2 - 4.30 pm.  We meet in the homes of different members - with the windows open.


WALKING GROUP                                                                  Contact: Mary Chait (07342964870)


We are a small friendly group who meet on the 2nd and 4th Friday of the month, usually at 10.30 am.  Our walks vary in length and terrain but there is normally no problem if a group member has difficulty.  We aim to be as flexible as we can.  We always recommend walking boots and cancel if wet but this is the prerogative of the walk leader.  Walks are usually planned in advance and we try to share the organisation.  The organiser will inform all members via e-mail of walk plans.

Mary Chait is overall organiser for the group so please contact her if you would like to join us, even if it is for a trial run!






U3ARegistered charity no. 1108125