On a crisp December evening, President Dinah Barrand welcomed members, four guests and five visitors to the final meeting of 2018 – and what a party it was!
Members had ‘dressed to impress’ and, in party mood, all settled down to enjoy Dawn Gracie a well-known vintage entertainer. Beautifully dressed as ‘Mistress Christmas’ (who wants to be boring Mrs Christmas),
Dawn talked about her career being kicked off in 2011 by being selected as the winner of the Best Dressed award at the Goodwood Revival. A lover of all things 50s and 60s, Dawn has since entertained a wide range of people and was full of wonderfully funny anecdotes about her experiences. Dawn sang a range of numbers – we did join in – and then invited volunteers to join her in having a burlesque experience.
Two members, Lesley and Stella, and Sharon, a guest from Aldwick Revival WI, were provided with boas and then tutored in the art of burlesque. Their performance was stunning and at 92 years young, Stella is seriously considering her new career as a burlesque dancer so if there are any agents out there……
On behalf of members and guests, Debbie gave a warm speech of thanks to Dawn for such a joyous start to the festive season.
Following a break for drinks and a sumptuous spread of party food, the meeting reconvened to play the Secret Santa game and exchange their presents of eco-friendly wrapped books. The game involved quick swaps left and right and, as it was much harder than it sounds, much hilarity ensued and nobody left without a present.
Following this, President’s Awards were given to those members who had made particular contributions to the life of BRWI so, in no particular order, the following were honoured with (handcrafted by Dinah) their awards:
- Techie Queen:- Kate Claisse
- Interesting Cakes Queen:- Manuela Andani
- Creative Star:- Katie Lyne
- Not-Acting-Your-Age Star:- Stella Elms
- Care Bear Award:- Sue Harris
Congratulations and thanks to you all.
Following this Jeanette, one of this year’s bursary winners, gave a talk about how the money was spent – in her case on a residential course on Machine Embroidery at Denman College. She loved the experience and exhorted all members to experience Denman if they could.
Read her complete presentation here …
Jane Sedgwick also won a bursary this year. Jane was not at the December meeting but she has sent a report on her visit to Denman …
The results of the Craft a Cracker competition were announced with Joyce taking first place, Barbara taking second, and Sarah and Lesley Guppy sharing third place. It was also the first time that one of the entries (Jack’s) had looked so delicious that it was assumed to be part of the supper and partially eaten!
Finally, it was super to have a visit from BRWI’s first President, Janet, and therefore to have all past and present Presidents in the room. Lovely to see you Janet!
At the end of this joyful and fun filled party, Dinah wished all members and guests a Happy Christmas and safe journey home.
To see lots more photos click here.
Words by Gina Fitch-Roy
Photos by Kate Claisse
To read Katie’s full record of the meeting click …