Westbury Park WI Meetings 2015

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Wednesday 28th January

Helen Dunmore

Renowned and local poet, novelist and writer,  including Orange Prize winner ‘The Seige’, followed by The Betrayal and her latest book ‘The Lie’. Helen spoke about the life of a writer; not just the 1000 words she tried to achieve each day, but the many other demands. She is currently a judge for the Baileys Womens literature prize and has to read over 40 of the 160 submitted books. Helen also opened the floor to questions during which time she explained that she has always wanted to write; how she researches her books; and that she sees her books visually and would like to have one made into a film.


Wednesday 25th February

Donna Pinker  explained that Shiatsu is a hands on treatment using the philosophy and theory of traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture. She explained that Qi is a refined physical/mind sense, and by working with the body’s meridians or energy lines Shiatsu can help to clear blockages in these energy lines, thereby allowing the body to heal itself. Different pressure points on the meridians relate to certain parts of the body and mind; some points can feel tender when pressure is exerted.

Donna then worked on a volunteer member, and using a combination of her thumbs, palms, knees and by stretching the body she demonstrated some of the more common diagnostic and practical techniques.

Donna has a treatment room at Activ8 on North View





Wednesday 25th March

Nicola introduced herself and explained that she has been making chocolates for eight years, ever since she attended a chocolate cookery course. Whilst she moulded ganache into individual truffles and dipped them in tempered chocolate, she explained the history of chocolate from its earliest consumption as a drink to modern mass production. The finished products were circulated for tasting – and pronounced to be delicious, as were the moulded chocolates which Nicola then made.

Nicola works from her converted garage and sells her chocolate to local shops and at markets. She holds adult and children’s workshops




Wednesday 22nd April


Mala  Brinsden introduced herself and briefly explained that burlesque originates from the Italian burlesco, meaning joke or mockery, and can be associated with clowning, for example Charlie Chaplin, or the more glamorous and flirtatious dancing.Mala then invited everyone to join her in a warm up dance, taught some basic moves which, with much laughter and moulting of boa feathers, were practised energetically by all! She finished with a performance of a simple routine which she teaches at her occasional workshops




Wednesday 27th May


RESOLUTION: Took the vote at our meeting for the resolution that will be the National Campaign for 2015-16 'Failing to Care' was passed by all


Pat & Heather then gave a talk on One25, introduced us to how they started, thanked us very much for all our support which is very valuable to them, and gave us a history of One25.

I then presented them with the £50 that Helen Dunmore had asked us to give on her behalf for the talk she gave us in January


We then Beetled for the rest of the evening, cor you don't half have to go quick to try and build a beetle - at one point went so quick I didn't catch the number on the dice!


Wednesday 24th June


Viv Groskop has been touring round many WI and other meetings since March in preparation for the Edinburgh festival, and that this was her 23rd meeting.

The theme of her show was apology, and when she realised she had assumed we were the Redlands WI she proceeded to apologise profusely for her mistake! She then apologised for all manner of things – including the fact that she grew up in Bruton (Somerset), is married with 3 children (aged 4, 8, and 11), and has a name which translates from Polish to ‘bighead’.

It was a very entertaining evening and we wish her well at the Edinburgh festival, where she will be performing at The Stand every evening from 5th – 20th August. She will also be performing at the Bristol Improv Theatre on 9th July with What the Frock.


Wednesday 22nd July

Social at the Eastfield Inn. £5 per person. Food, good company and skittles. Members only


August : rest month !


Wednesday  23rd September

A talk by our secretary Abigail and Vice president social entrepreneur Emma


Wednesday 28 October

Champagne tasting


Wednesday 25th November

Getting crafty




Combined social event with Durdham Down Group