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Archive of Club Activities 2009-2010

President – Miss Margaret Lawton

SI Dewsbury fully engaged in a busy year during 2009-10. Fundraising activities included the following

  • An Italian evening of gorgeous food in a lovely home – in aid of the President’s charity – Forget Me Not Trust
  • more gorgeous food at a Garden Party with Plant Sale – in aid of the President’s charity
  • a wonderful canal boat trip – in aid of the President’s charity
  • a 5 km sponsored canal walk – in aid of the Safe Anchor Trust
  • a ‘Macmillan Largest Coffee Morning’ held in a local retirement home
  • a Concert – African Sanctus at Leeds Town Hall – in aid of Project SIerra
  • the annual Carol Service – in aid of the International President’s Appeal – Hopes and Dreams for Everyone
  • a social evening in collaboration with a local Masonic Lodge and the Rotarians included an ExExExFactor competition of performances – in aid of the Dewsbury Arts Group. 
  • a Ceilidh and pie ‘n’ peas supper in aid of the President’s charity.

Members also enjoyed several social events which included – a Safari Supper, a visit to the theatre, joining in with a Scarecrow Festival at a local church, a Friendship evening with SI Preston at SI Skipton and a trip to Ladies Day at the York Races. Into the autumn – members enjoyed a cake as celebration of our oldest member’s 90th birthday and she was joined by others all celebrating a ‘0’ birthday including President Margaret; a Christmas Festivities Tea at Tentercroft Court; joining others in the community for a Christmas Tree Festival in Thornhill Parish Church; a Christmas Dinner and pantomime visit for some.




The Annual luncheon was held at Blenheim House, Batley on Sunday June 14th. President Margaret Lawton welcomed guests including Yorkshire President Pat Drake (pic above left) and the Speaker Stuart Atkins (pic above right) who spoke about his ‘Life with the Stars’ from his days as a performer at Batley Variety club

                        Lunch guests

Members and a guest enjoying a pre-lunch drink.



   Jean Smith and Dorothy Long

Long Service awards were presented by President Margaret to Jean Smith for 30 years and Dorothy Long for 25 years service at the July businesss meeeting



  Chris with the finished scarecrow

Chris shows the finished SI Dewsbury scarecrow which joined many others at Thornhill Parish Church Festival for the weekend July 11-12.    



President Margaret with Carol & Glenn
A garden party was held by Carol Ashbury in September where home grown vegetables and produce was sold, £326 was raised for the President’s charity the Forget-Me-Not Trust.
 Members and friends enjoyed a Canal walk from Shepley marina to Horbury Bridge followed by a meal at nearby Capri restaurant, a collection for the Safe Anchor trust raised £120



The Armed Man & African Sanctus Concert –

Leeds Town Hall Saturday 26th Sep. 2009

“It was the vision of Federation President Carwen Wynne-Howells who, in December 2007, originally recognised a possible link between Project SIerra and the fact that Yorkshire Philharmonic Choir(YPC) and Harrogate Choral Society together were planning a performance of African Sanctus, and who very quickly suggested that this concert take place”, says Richard Haigh, Chairman of Yorkshire Voices.  At the same time SI Dewsbury held their annual carol service with members of the Yorkshire Chamber Choir (a sub-group of YPC) providing the choir.  The President of SI Dewsbury, Kate Currie, coincidentally saw the same potential as President Carwen and encouraged SI Dewsbury to pursue the possibilities that the shared ideals of the music and Project SIerra offered.

All clubs across Yorkshire were asked to donate £20 towards the sponsorship of the concert.  In return there came the opportunity to promote Soroptimism and to raise awareness and funds for Project SIerra.

The concert was attended by SI Federation President Carwen Wynne-Howells, SI Yorkshire President Pat Drake and her husband, and Janet Hutton, Yorkshire Ambassador for Project SIerra. 

The concert was a sell out.  Janet Hutton gave a short talk at the start of the concert about Soroptimism and Project Sierra.  Janet encouraged everyone to complete the giftaid envelopes provided and to give generously to the retiring collection for Project Sierra, manned by members of SI Dewsbury.  There was an advertisement and donation form on the inside cover of the concert programme and the retiring collection took just over £1500.

The Armed Man, A Mass for Peace highlights the futility of war and was in stark contrast to the vibrant, energetic second half of African Sanctus.  The massed voices of the joint choirs forming Yorkshire Voices, together with the presence of the Mighty Zulu Nation Dancers (pictured above) and the Backbeat Percussion Quartet made it a truly memorable occasion.

 Soroptimists – celebrating a wonderful event

From left to right, Secretary SI Dewsbury Kate Currie, The Lord Mayor of Leeds Cllr Judith Elliott, Yorkshire Ambassador for Project SIerra Janet Hutton, Regional President Pat Drake, Federation President Carwen Wynne-Howells, President SI Dewsbury Margaret Lawton



President Margaret & Shahild Malik

Dewsbury members helped the residents at Tentercroft Court for the Macmillan largest coffee morning, various stalls of home made preserves, cakes, white elephant, tombola and raffle helped to raise over £700 on the day. Shalid Malik M.P. attended and contributed generously to the fund.

Kate, Sue & President Margaret with Shahid Malik

Kate, Sue and President Margaret with Shahild Malik at the cake stall



Seven members attended the SIGBI Conference in October 2009 and enjoyed a number of inspirational presentations, paraded Bras in the Bay (a fund raising event run by Oxfam who send all the bras to Africa) and had a celebratory evening having won the Best Practice Award for Goodwill and Understanding.

       Cardiff bras in bay 

This was when we modelled our free ponchos which were found in the Conference bag in case it rained!! Surprisingly, for Wales, it did not rain.   

       Cardiff and macs



Our Carol Service was held at St Michael and All Angels Church in Thornhill Dewsbury on Sunday December 6th 2009. We were privileged to welcome The Mayor of Kirklees – Mrs J. Stewart-Taylor and her Consort, Judith Alce – President of SI Yorkshire, pictured below with Rev Norma Webb and our President Margaret Lawton.

Carol Service Dignitaries

SI Dewsbury’s Choir was led by Alan Brierley and accompanied by Eileen Mahony. Carols sung by the choir had been well practised with a great deal of help from Kate Currie and Alan Brierley and enjoyed the addition of a few friends with lovely voices. A recording was made and sold to add a few pounds to the collection which was taken for the International President’s Appeal ‘Hopes and Dreams for Everyone’.




 The Christmas Tree Exhibition in Thornhill Church was held from December 12-14 2009. There were many trees presented by local clubs, schools and companies. SI Dewsbury presented a really good looking tree as a result of the hard work of Eileen Gaunt, Linda Davis and Elaine Hough. The snow flakes and stars listed all the events and activities that we have engaged in this year. The Soroptimist logos made good baubles and there were Sorop fairies and info leaflets at the base of the tree – the latter to attract new members. The photo below does not do it justice especially since the white twinkling lights do not show.





The EX-EX-EX Factor was a social event held in partnership with a local Masonic Lodge to raise funds for the building programme of the Dewsbury Arts Group. A great deal of fun was had by all. A very good supper was followed by the EX-EX-EX Factor Talent Competition. Three judges (top above) included a SI Dewsbury soroptimist, a mason and ‘Ella’ our mascot scarecrow (who said not a lot). There were some pretty mean but very funny comments made about the acts presented in the competition which included our Choir (below) singing three ‘comedy’ songs – Fish n Chips – There are Bad Times Just Around the Corner and Three Girls Bright and Beautiful (one is featured in the above). Another group improvised an Angry Old Women sketch which was extremely funny. The audience voted for each act so all was fair despite the judges’ comments!



Nine members gave time to collect for Marie Curie in a Morrisons Supermarket as the SOS event for SI Dewsbury. In around 5 hours we raised £283.90.


President Margaret’s year got under way with an Italian evening in June. Members enjoyed lasagne and salad followed by tiramisu and other wonderful desserts. £200 was raised towards the President’s charity the Forget me not trust.


A trip to the Dewsbury Arts Group Theatre to see ‘Stepping Out’ was enjoyed by members and friends in June


Safari Supper

A Safari with a difference was held at Ossett Church Hall where a five course supper of excellent home made food was enjoyed by all. After each course one diner remained at the table while the others moved to a different table in rotation – in this way everyone had a changing selection of companions and conversation.

 Sue & Julie

Sue and Julie prepare to serve the five thousand – or actually thirty hungry Soroptimists with their supper

Please Ma’am can I have some more?                    Having a good time

Jackie & Kate







 Elaine & June                                                                              Linda & Carole



 Hilda & Dorothy

                                 Cheers to a good evening for all


Friendship Evening with SI Preston

 A group of members met with SI Preston at the Soroptimist House of SI Skipton for a friendship evening. A faith supper provided by the two clubs, Dewsbury for the savouries and Preston for the desserts was tucked into before the entertainment. Dewsbury performed their version of ‘My favourite things’ and Elaine read an amusing article from the 1950s of ‘A wife’s duties’, all agreed how times have changed! A game of bingo followed won by Elaine

                                  Friends from PrestonSinging 'My favourite things'                                                                                                                   





Canal Trip

 Canal trip

‘closing a lock – ready for off again’

Enjoying a sunny day on the canal. One of our members invited us on board for a trip through 4 locks. Very interesting technology and a peaceful, pleasant time had by all to generate funds for our President’s charity.


Ladies Day at York races


Under Starter’s orders, ready for the off……

Following a picnic lunch with champagne there was no stopping this group of fillies ready to spend the housekeeping money at the tote. Discussions on names, studying the form and strategically placing of pins on the race card all paid off as the fancys romped home and ensured wallets not only remained intact but made a handsome profit on the day. Well done to SID’s syndicate!



Eight Dewsbury members have celebrated milestone birthdays ending in ‘0’ this year, including Honorary member Joan Cave who celebrated her 90th recently.



SI Dewsbury provided teas and fun for the residents of Tentercroft Court – a retirement village – on December 5th 2009. Much appreciated food some games, a few carols sung by SID’s Choir and more sung by everyone made for a happy and relaxed event enjoyed by all.



Twelve of us enjoyed a fantastic meal and an evening of fun and friendship on December 15th 2009

Christmas Dinner