Issue 142


Registered charity no. 1108125                                                                                           July/August 2017


Newsletter Editor: Elizabeth Stevens            01865 739252                   secretary@westoxfordu3a.org.uk





This Newsletter is published on the Internet simultaneously with the printing.  If any material relating to any individual should not be so published, please contact the Editor.



At the last AGM Lis Froggatt kindly agreed to come on to the Committee as the Vice Chairman which is really appreciated.


On Monday 5th June a group of us went to Wisley which was looking lovely.   Joyce Encer managed to organise a dry but not windy day which considering the rest of the week was a miracle.  Everybody enjoyed looking at their favourite areas.  Unfortunately, you cannot see it all, so thank you Joyce.


We have come to end of a very successful year; brand new blinds, extra parking, brilliant speakers and tea with cakes.  A big thank you to the Committee and also to all the people who work so hard behind the scenes.

Our final event is the Summer Lunch.  I look forward to seeing you there.


Have a lovely summer and we will see you in September.

                                                                                                                                    Kay Whittle


TVN Study days for 2017


Please note that there is a link to the TVN website from the Links Button on this website


The William Morris day at Kelmscott Manor is fully booked but if there are sufficient numbers more visits can be arranged for next year.  If this happens, it does get booked very quickly so you would need to apply as soon as possible.

Crop and Climate Change on 28 September is very popular but there may be a few places left.


Gilbert and Sullivan on 18 October – again very popular but worth applying to see if there are any places left.


Aspects of Archaeology in The Thames Valley on 15 November at Benson – recently released.  This is now fully booked and there is a waiting list.


The TVN Workshop on 23 November tba.


Study Days take a lot of planning and are well worth the effort of going.  If interested and transport is a problem, please ask Kay, Lorna or Beverley and we may be able to help.


See: u3atvnetwork.org.uk  OR our website westoxfordu3a.org.uk to print off your own application form. 

Full details are available in the purple folder in front of the notice board at each meeting, as well as online at u3atvnetwork.org.uk   or our own website at westoxfordu3a.org.uk


Please check TVN and our website regularly for additions as several others are in the pipeline




YOUR  NEWSLETTER  from Elizabeth Stevens, Secretary

Please send all contributions, notices, etc. for the next issue covering September/October 2017 to: Elizabeth Stevens, 104 Kennington Road, Kennington, Oxford OX1 5PE, (01865 739252) secretary@westoxfordu3a.org.uk   not later than Friday, 18 August 2017.

A reminder that the current issue can always be found on this website http://www.westoxfordu3a.org.uk/




The representatives, to whom all matters relating to Newsletter distribution should be referred, are:


Botley and Elms Rise: Ian & Eileen Ross   (01865 793083)   

Cumnor:                      Joan Airey (01865 864088)    



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


There is a belief, especially prevalent among the young, that as one ages, sex plays a less important role in our lives.  This may be true for many for a multitude of reasons but we should not ignore the part that it plays in the continuum of life.  To this end, we propose, in the first talk, to hear about sex in the seventeenth century from Tim Healey and we will end next summer with a look at invertebrate sex in the garden from the Ashton Bugman, Roger Umpleby.  In between, there will be diverse topics to stimulate and amuse



11 September

Tim Healey

Sex, Drink and Death in the 17th Century

25 September

Diane Wilson

Wildlife in a Country Garden

9 October

Shan Bristow

Quarry Bank Mill, Styal, Cheshire.  The history and future plans for this National Trust Property.

23 October

Alistair Borland. MBE

 Blood, Bikes and Babies. Emergency Rider Volunteers  to the rescue

13 November

Christina Wartke Dunbar

J.M.W Turner, The artist, the man

27 November

Nick Gill

The Great Sophisticate of American Song Writing - Cole Porter

13 December






8 January

Ian Keable

Charles Dickens. Conjuror

22 January

Lynda Ware

Two bars of chocolate a day can slash your risk of heart attack and stroke -Really?

12 February

Tim King

Ants, ant intelligence and ant hills

26 February

Sir Muir Gray


12 March

Rob Walters

Oxford University Press

26 March

Kate Garnons Williams

Island-Hopping with the Hero Odysseus

9 April

Dr Eric Sidebottom

The History of Penicillin

23 April

Marina Hamilton Baillie

History of the National Garden Scheme

14 May

Mark Davies

James Sadler. The first English Aeronaut

21 May

Alan Rogers

Hazards, observations and driving techniques

11 June

Mark Walsh

‘Here's a funny thing'.   A biographical talk on the life and times of the comedy legends George Formby and Max Miller

25 June

Roger Umpelby

X-rated invertebrates’ savagery and sex in the garden



ART HISTORY/APPRECIATION           (10 members)             Contact: Terence Carter (01865 863379)


Visits to the Ashmolean Museum normally take place on the second Tuesday or the second Thursday of each month, meeting just inside the main entrance to the Museum. For other locations, directions will be given. Please let Terence know if you would like to attend. There are spaces available in this group.


Tuesday 11 July, at the Ashmolean Museum: Raphael Exhibition: “The Drawings”. Meet in the Ashmolean foyer at 3 pm for a guided tour at 3.30 pm. Concessions 10. Usually cheaper with a National Art Pass.


August – no Meeting.


BRIDGE GROUP          (20 regular members)                                    Contact Annie Lorton, 01367 718331


We are a really friendly group of around 20 players who have a game every Wednesday starting at 2.00pm and finishing around 5.00pm.  We meet in each other’s houses and all can play bridge to an enjoyable level.  We alternate the sessions with one being a bit more structured playing Chicago, and the other {Splinter} session being a time to learn through playing Rubber Bridge, with pauses to discuss hands as required.


Our dates during July are as follows: 5 July at Annie’s home, 12 July at Barbara’s, 18 July at Judy’s, and 26 July at Mike’s home.  We continue to play throughout the year.


This is not a group for total beginners but please enquire if you have a basic knowledge of Bridge and would like to know more.


CHURCHES AND PUBS            (15 members)                         Contact:  Brian Cox (01865 872720)


The group meets at a church on the first Friday of the month and lunches together afterwards, usually at a local pub.

Members of West Oxford U3A who would like further information should contact Brian Cox by e-mail please at briancox30@btinternet.com


CINEMA GROUP - 2    (10 members)             Contacts:  Pam and David Eyton  (pameyton@gmail.com)


We meet on the second Thursday of the month to discuss a variety of films (mainly from the Phoenix) over a shared meal in a member’s house. 

The membership is restricted to 10 because of the dining arrangements. 

If you are interested in going on a waiting list or being invited when space is available, please e-mail Pam.


CINEMA GROUP – 3   (new members welcome)                  Contact:  Lis Froggatt (01865 249828)


Cinema Group 3 continues to meet on the second Tuesday of each month at The Punter on Osney Island at 12.30pm.  Everyone welcome for a discussion about films seen, recommended and plans to view new films.



COMPUTER  USERS’ GROUP  (7 members – new members welcome)   Contact: Richard Sills (01865 721644)


All meetings will be held at The Map House, Vernon Avenue, OX2 9AU at 10.30 am.  We meet as usual on 3 July then not until September.


CRAFT GROUP                                                                        Contact:  Sally Strang (01865 240310)

Our next meeting will be on Friday, 21 July at 4 Copse Close.


GARDEN CLUB                                                                                    Contact: Mary Gregory (01865 865887)


Like our gardens, the Garden Club is full of action as summer hots up.  Organised by Joyce Encer,  and with support from the U3A, a full coach-load of us enjoyed an excellent visit to the flagship RHS garden at Wisley – a first for this sort of activity but surely not the last.  Another first was the Garden Club reaching its first anniversary, celebrated with birthday drinks – in the garden, of course.  A record number have signed up for the upcoming private group visit to an NGS garden in Horton cum Studley.  With the enthusiastic membership activities will continue to roll.


LANGUAGES                                                                           Contact:  David Taylor (01235 525455)  


We have completed our study of German for the time being, and from July we shall turn to Spanish.  Due to the limitations of space, we cannot unfortunately accommodate any more in the group.


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


These convivial meetings are normally held on the third Thursday of each month, at 2.15 pm.  We meet in members’ homes and the host introduces and plays recordings, usually on CD or DVD, of broadly classical music which can be secular or sacred and can include extracts and arias from opera.  Members freely express their reactions.  We may finish with something in lighter mood.


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, at 4 Long Close.  Please ring if you are interested in coming.


WALKING GROUP      (15 members)             Contacts: Sally Roberts (721596) and Norman Robinson (862845)


Walks normally commence at 10 am on the 2nd and 4th Fridays of each month and are arranged a few weeks in advance.   It is important to note that if bad weather threatens, you should ring the named leader of the walk, on the day, to check whether it is going ahead; otherwise you may have a wasted journey. (If it is actually raining, the walk will almost certainly be cancelled).  Walking boots are always recommended.