And so to my turn – the president’s address. First I would like to express my thanks to Dinah for writing and presenting the annual report on behalf of the committee. I am sure you will all agree she has done a fantastic job as secretary this last year and deserves her own special thank you.
I would also like to thank a special group of members – known as the committee: Dinah, Celia, Sue Harris, Jeanette, Katie, Chris and Sue Regan. Thank you for your hard work, your ideas, and your unwavering support.
I would also like to echo the many words of gratitude in the annual report, thank you to you – the members; thank you for your continued membership and support of our WI. Bognor Regis WI’s continuing success is down to simply the many members who all contribute in big and small ways to our WI and as I stand down as president I have one simple request – please support the new committee and keep up the good work!
At every annual meeting I have been a part of, when we acknowledge all we have done over the last year, I am overwhelmed with all our achievements – collective and individual, for example the federation team quizzes, the county show and your amazing entries to our competition cup. However I do not think that these achievements are what makes our WI so special. Over the years I have received many enquiries from women wishing to join our WI and all of them in one way or another have been searching for friendship. And this is what makes the WI and our WI so special – the friendship, support and time we give to each other.
Last year I said, an annual meeting is a time to reflect….writing this year’s report was not an easy task for me and I have struggled to find the words to convey to you exactly how I feel. I have served on the committee for the last five years and Bognor Regis WI has become an integral and important part of life – in fact our WI meetings are the first thing I add to a new diary after my family’s birthdays! I am incredibly proud to have been your president for three years, thank you for entrusting me with this special role. I have enjoyed every minute – even the late nights doing admin and paperwork. I am standing down today, because I firmly believe committee members should not stay in office forever; WIs should evolve and change. So yes in all honestly I shall miss being on the committee but change is good – for all of us. An annual meeting is also about new beginnings – the start of a new year, with a new committee and a time to look forward to the year to come. And actually I’m quite looking forward to sitting with you all and trying my best not to chat while the speaker is talking. And I will have so much more time to spend baking and crafting!
So before I finish, I would like to say a few words to the member who will succeed me – I wish you the best of luck, enjoy it! and remember you are not alone, your committee will always support you, as will we all.