New and old Recipes!

At our January meeting we were asked to provide recipes that would use up the dreaded left-over Christmas turkey. Some of our members rose superbly to the challenge and we now have 5 excellent recipes, all quite different, that have been added to the recipes on this site under the subheading ‘To use up left-over food’….

Turkey Enchiladas

Turkey and Mushroom Pie


Turkey and Ham Hollandaise

Turkey Pithivier

I actually still have some frozen left-over turkey so look forward to trying out one of these. If you don’t have any turkey left, why not try chicken.

Many thanks to Maggie, Chris, Ann, and Jack for their contributions.

I am quite sure that next Christmas we will be getting comments from around the world about some/all of our new recipes. As Sue said at our last meeting, our recipes are proving popular, in particular the Victoria Plum Jam recipe has been praised from as far away as Australia. I have checked and the Apple Charlotte recipe is the one with the most complimentary comments, one also from Australia and our latest one from Sarah, Treasurer of Ribby with Wrea WI in Lancashire. She was delighted to find her mother’s old recipe made with breadcrumbs and suet. After trying it, she reported:

OMG… that brought back memories! Dad’s eyes lit up just at the sight of it, and hubby was most impressed too. The lemon addition really lifts it… a bit exotic/expensive for a 50’s bride perhaps. A permanent place in my repertoire awaits. Delicious 


Kate Claisse

Weather we like it or not

At our February meeting we had a very interesting talk by Gina, who is our Climate Ambassador, on the weather and climate change. Her talk is included in this month’s Buzz (our newsletter), and I am including it here also as it provides a clear analysis of the weather over the last 4 years, the jet stream, and climate change. Thanks Gina for drawing all this information together for us.


Recent UK weather

It will not have passed unnoticed that we are just coming out of the Beast from the East 2. We were in fact in the grip of an unusually cold period of weather thanks to a flow of cold easterly winds from Siberia. On the morning of February 11, the village of Braemar in the Scottish Highlands recorded -23.0°C, the UK’s coldest temperature since 1995 and coldest February temperature since the 1950s. The two cold spells of 2018 and 2021 bookend a volatile four years of winter weather. In February 2019, the UK experienced a “winter heatwave” when the temperature reached 21.2°C at Kew Gardens in London. The following year saw the country’s wettest February on record stretching back to 1862, with winter storms Ciara and Dennis producing some of the rainiest individual days on record. Extreme cold, a heatwave, a deluge, and another cold snap: the succession of different extremes raises questions about climate variability and climate change.

Atlantic Jet Stream

Western Europe is at the mercy of the Atlantic jet stream – a band of westerly winds which steer powerful weather systems, flanked by cold air to its north and warmer air to its south. The jet stream is extremely variable and fluctuations in its strength and position are the main reason why the region can have such varied weather.

In both 2021 and 2018, the jet stream was unusually weak and shifted southward, allowing cold air to flood out of the Arctic. In early 2020, the jet stream was supercharged, keeping colder air locked up and instead pushing in mild, moisture-laden air and storm systems from the Atlantic. In 2019, it buckled northwards, allowing a dome of high pressure to develop over the UK under which the temperature skyrocketed. These different patterns all fall within natural climate variability. The weakened jet stream in 2018 and this year, as well as the strengthened jet stream in 2020, are all linked to variability in the Arctic stratospheric polar vortex – effectively a vast low-pressure system around 30km above the surface, which fluctuates in strength from year to year.

Climate change

But we do know that climate change is likely to make winters milder and wetter in the UK, largely because warmer air can hold much more water. This is supported by recent observations: the winters of 2013-14, 2015-16 and 2019-20 all rank in the top five wettest on record. Recent research has shown that climate change has also made exceptionally warm winter days – such as the 20°C heatwave in February 2019 – around 300 times more likely, although they remain rare because the specific atmospheric configuration required is so unlikely.

So there is evidence to support climate change having amplified the extreme heat of 2019 and the rain of 2020. But what about cold weather and climate change? It is important to remember that extremely cold weather can still happen in a warming climate. If climate change is like loading a die, then rolling a one is still possible. Just because you roll a one every so often does not tell you that the die is not loaded. For that, you need to look at longer periods of time, to see if you are rolling more sixes and fewer ones.

The Central England Temperature (CET) is the world’s longest-running continuous instrumental temperature record, with data from 1659. It gives a clear indication of how even the coldest winters in recent times pale in comparison with those of the past. 

A winter with an average temperature below 2°C used to occur about once per decade. Central England has not had a winter that cold since 1978-79 – a never-before-observed gap of four consecutive decades and counting. Despite plenty of cold spells in the past few decades, no one under the age of 42 has lived through what could be considered a historically cold winter season in central England.

The evidence for manmade climate change is overwhelming and global warming may be speeding up. The 20 warmest years on record have all come since 1995. And just as the rate of temperature rise looks to be accelerating, so too does one of its main consequences: the rise in sea level. Over the last 20 years sea levels have risen at roughly twice the speed of the preceding 80 years.  

So how will this affect us?

  • The higher latitudes, where the UK sits, will be hotter and wetter.
  • In Britain we will have hotter summers. By 2040, we expect more than half of our summers to exceed 2003 temperatures and we will have wetter winters, and extreme rainfall events will become even more extreme. 
  • Sea levels will rise significantly, perhaps by up to a metre in places by 2100 and we will experience frequent and more extreme flooding and coastal erosion, caused by those wetter winters, heavier rain, stronger storms and rising sea levels. 
  • More water shortages and higher drought risk, caused by the hotter drier summers and less predictable rainfall. 
  • More air and water pollution, due to those longer, hotter summers. 
  • More damage to wildlife and the habitat on which it depends. In many cases that damage may be existential. If we continue to emit greenhouse gases at the same rate as today, then by 2050 one million species across the globe are likely to vanish. And as many of you will know we are seeing many species currently endangered in the UK including Atlantic salmon and cod who cannot survive increasing sea temperatures, kittiwakes and guillemots failing due to declining sand eel populations, bees (there are 250 different types) at risk because of intensive farming and loss of habitat and puffins in decline because of over fishing. 

Friends of the Earth suggest that governments should be pressed to work on the following six areas – sustainable transport, power generation, buildings and homes, trees and food, consumption and international justice.

And finally one mildly interesting factoid and an app that is quite useful. 

  • Standard Sea Level pressure is 1013 millibars (I think they call in Hecto Pascals now). For every one millibar below this, the sea level rises by 1cm and conversely for every millibar above, the sea level is depressed. In the great storm of 1987, the lowest pressure recorded was 953 mb, so the sea level would have been 0.6m higher than normal. 
  • Energy Watch GB or NG ESO are both (free) apps that allow you to see at any time the way in which our electricity is being generated and therefore the percentage that is zero carbon.


Culture in Quarantine

You can now watch six of our plays on BBC iPlayer.

As part of the BBC’s plans to keep bringing arts to audiences during the Coronavirus pandemic, you will be able to watch six of our shows from the comfort of your own home over the next few weeks.

All six are now on iPlayer and will be broadcast on BBC 4 – dates to be announced:

The productions in Stratford on the apron stage are second to none, so I do highly recommend them.  Forget about the Shakespeare you were condemned to studying at school – these productions are another thing altogether.

The ones I will be watching are Hamlet, Much Ado about Nothing, and Othello, all of which have won 4 and 5* reviews.  Romeo and Juliet is 3* but was ‘very popular with the audience’ so I may watch that too.

If you feel you are not a ‘Shakespeare lover’, I suggest you try Much Ado About Nothing which is really funny and enjoyable.

Kate Claisse

Walking Netball


Bognor Regis WI netball team continues to thrive, playing every Wednesday 6-7pm at the Arena sports hall. We’re really lucky to have the lovely Ann coaching, and attempting to teach us skills, tactics and rules.


Sarah has embroidered team polo shirts for us all.

You’re welcome to pop along anytime – Annie Smith is our organiser.

Dinah Barrand

County Craft Award 2019

Back in the spring, the West Sussex Federation Art & Craft Sub-Committee announced this year’s County Craft Competition. As 2019 is West Sussex Federation’s Centenary Year – the competition had a centenary theme.

Picture 1

Members were asked to use the county flower of Sussex the ‘Round-headed Rampion’ – a flower also known as the ‘Pride of Sussex’, as shown on the Federation’s centenary badge, as inspiration….. and produce an item of craft in any medium.

Three members of Bognor Regis WI took up the challenge and produced three completely different and beautiful entries.

Picture 2

All the items submitted by West Sussex members were pre-judged at North Lodge by an independent judge from outside our Federation. All the items were displayed at the WSFWI Annual Meeting in October and the results of the competition were announced.

Our members did exceptionally well…

Barbara F was awarded 1st Place with her 3d Textile Rampion, and she was presented with the Silver Plate at the Annual meeting, which she will have on loan for the year.

Picture 5

June S was awarded ‘Highly Commended’ for her curved glass picture

Picture 6

Jan A was awarded ‘Commended’ for her framed stitched picture of the Downs

Congratulations to all of them, your fellow Bognor Regis WI members are very proud of you!

Words and pictures: Lesley Guppy




The May meeting of Bognor Regis WI started in a swirl of colour with President Dinah Barrand sporting her new striped dungarees made from recycled fabric and supplied by a fair trade African company. This set the tone of the meeting which focussed on the Resolutions put forward by the National Federation of Womens’ Institutes but with an overarching theme of how all members could make a difference to our world by making small (or bigger) changes to their lifestyles.



Mandy receiving contributions for the Food Bank


First, however, Dinah introduced Mandy, the Deputy Co-ordinator of the Bognor Food Bank. She described how most food banks (Bognor included) come under the aegis of the Trussell Trust, a charity which aims to end hunger and poverty in the UK and to campaign for change to end the need for food banks. Mandy talked about the circumstances which led to people needing short term help including delays/changes in benefit payments, redundancy, pregnancy and domestic violence.  Bognor Food Bank relies on donations of non-perishable food from members of the public and clients need a voucher from a referring agency such as CAB, Radio Respect, My Sisters House etc. This system allows the referring agency to work with the person, providing ongoing support to hopefully improve their circumstance


As well as providing food, however, Bognor Food Bank provides care and compassion and ensures that all clients are valued, listened to and cared about. The Food Bank has also provided courses on budget cookery and tries to give extra help in the summer holidays – when school meals are not available – and special Christmas bags. Sadly, the need is growing with 3,000 people being fed last year – an increase of 33%.

After a very warm vote of thanks both for Mandy’s talk and for the excellent work they are doing, the meeting moved on to a quiz and vote on the potential resolutions. These were the provision of additional council funding for public bus services and encouraging more women (including young women) to have regular smear tests. It was agreed by a clear majority that both resolutions were worthy of support and the delegate to the national AGM in June will vote in accordance with the wishes of BRWI.

During the extended refreshment break with Prosecco and cake (including the delicious vegan cupcakes – to view the recipe – click Vegan Ginger Cupcakes) members had the opportunity to explore the displays on green living set up by the Committee.  These included a clear demonstration of what items can be put in the recycling bin and what can be recycled elsewhere, green replacements/substitutions for household products including homemade beeswax food covering and pan scrubbers, making the move to a plant based diet and the resources available to do so, reducing or eliminating the need for single use plastics, recycling and upcycling materials to make bags (and the examples included some unlikely raw materials!) and making rich and friable compost from garden and kitchen waste. To see all the ideas click here  Lots of questions were asked and many pledges made to try something new; it was inspiring to see how the members really wanted to make a difference to the lives of the local community and the wider world.

Later in the month, twenty members will be making a visit to Tuppenny Barn a sustainable living education centre in Southbourne, and three members will be joining lots of other WIs – and many other groups concerned about climate change – when they go on the Time is Now mass lobby of Parliament. This summer the Government will decide whether to end the UK’s contribution to climate change by committing to a net zero emissions target. They will also have the chance to end nature’s decline by committing to a strong Environment Bill. The Time is Now on June 26th is hoped to be the largest mass lobby for climate and the environment that the UK has ever seen.  The WI is very proud to be part of it!!

Click to display the Record of May 19 meeting

Words: Gina

Photos: Katie and Kate