The committee for 2021/2022 salute you ….
Joining Bognor Regis WI was part of my” big adventure”. I’d lived in West London all my life and in 2013, following separating from my husband, I decided it was time for a change. I took early retirement from the Civil Service and decided to fulfil a lifelong ambition of living by the sea. I had spent many happy family holidays in Felpham in the 60s and when I moved here in 2014 it seemed like coming home.
The only difference from home was I knew no one!! Friends had suggested I joined the WI but, as I didn’t sew or knit and had never made jam, I was a little sceptical. However, I decided it was worth a look and found the BRWI website. What a revelation!! Many groups that ticked my interests.
I visited in Nov 2014 and was totally taken by the warm welcome, the buzz of the meeting, and the array of opportunities to get involved in. I duly joined up in Jan 2015. Having joined I found friendship with a large group of like minded women and began to appreciate that there was a lot more to the WI than cakes and jam. I had found somewhere I belonged, in an organisation that I was proud of.
Joining the WI had given me the friendship and activities I had been looking for and, as a way of giving something back, I joined the committee in Oct 2015 Being on the committee has given me an insight into the WI at local, federation and national level, and the opportunity to work with a group of ladies committed to do their best for the membership.
In October 2019, I became President of our amazing WI and look forward to maintaining the legacy of previous Presidents and committees whilst bringing new ideas and new directions to our WI.
After we brought our house in Felpham in September 2010 I saw articles in the local paper about a new WI starting in Bognor, I thought as soon as I retire and live here permanently, I will join this WI. Well, I retired in November 2014, went along to my first meeting in December 2014 then joined in January 2015 and I am very happy I did so. I really enjoy belonging to the BRWI it has helped me feel at home and be part of the community in Bognor Regis.
After being a member for over 5 years I thought it was time for me to give something back, so I joined the committee in October 2020 as deputy treasurer then took on the role of Treasurer in October 2021.
Having been curious “what is the WI”, I started a little research and found the Bognor Regis WI – with a friend we attended a meeting and loved the energy – so we joined!
I moved to this area many years ago but between my two daughters growing up, the need to work, and some charity work along the way there never seemed time for me.
I gave up working last year and was keen to explore the next adventure – meeting new people, learning new skills, even taking time to just be.
The WI is all that and more.
I trust that in joining the WI and the committee I can contribute to such a wonderful organisation moving forward.
Having lived in Bognor for 20 years, I thought it was about time I got to know more people, make more friends and have a bit of ‘Me time’ . Why the WI? Well it might have something to do with my love of CAKE! My Children think I’m old fashioned – My passion is sewing, I’m a bit of a Fabric junkie! I love baking and my music tastes are extremely diverse. But on the other hand I do have a couple of tattoos and a piercing, so I am a bit of a mixture and that’s why the WI can suit any woman really, as there’s something for everyone.
Having moved to Bognor in late October 2014, but still working in West Byfleet, I decided in December it was time to get to know the local area and some friendly faces.
Several emails later, I finally plucked up the courage to visit BRWI on a cold February evening, the only problem was I couldn’t find the door to get in. Just as I was about to give up, a lovely member (Helen) arrived and said “come with me I’ll show you the way in”, and now here I am on the committee!
I love reading and chatting and have spent most of my working life in libraries, currently I am the librarian at a Secondary School in Horndean.
My other passions are crafting, especially card making, my cats, gardening, and being with friends and family.
I have been married for 41 years to John, and I am Mum to our two daughters, and Grandma to our four grandchildren.
Jen Tompkins – Secretary – more to come