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President’s Blog -November

President’s Report –  November 2021

Just ‘B’ Fashion Show

November certainly was a busy month. I put on the glad rags provided for me by Saint Michael’s Charity shop and waltzed down the catwalk in our fantastic Fashion Show on the 6th of November.  A very big Congratulations to Immediate Past President Sandra. An amazing £7200 raised for Just ‘B’.  A great team effort with many members actively involved on the day. Excellent leadership and organisational skills from Sandra.  It was a case of third time lucky.  But was worth the wait. And over £11,000 raised for Just ‘B’ in the last 18 month.  A great example of partnership working and helping save the planet. The ‘fast fashion’ industry produces more CO2 than shipping and aviation combined according to and Oxfam report. Food for thought.

Meeting up with prospective members

Penny has done a fabulous job in meeting with prospective members.  Penny, Irene, and I met Lynn who is interested in joining us. Café Marconi is a great place to meet prospective members.

Remembrance Day

On the 11 November I attended a ceremony at the Harrogate Cenotaph organised by the British Legion.  It is 100 years since the organisation was founded to support war widows and injured soldiers. On the 11th hour, on the 11th Day in the 11th month the guns finally stopped, and the armistice declared to end the First World War. We remembered with two minutes silence

On the 14th of November I attended the official Remembrance Service at Harrogate Cenotaph to lay a wreath on behalf of the Club.  It reminded me of my time as a girl guide when we would also ‘fall in’ to march with others to our local Cenotaph. It was good to see the tradition continues with the young and veterans marching before the ceremony started.

I also attended the ceremony at the Commonwealth War Graves (CWG) at Stonefall. Another moving service. I was delighted that my Mum, who is 95 years old, was able to be there. My Uncle, who served in Bomber Command and was killed in action is buried in de Lutte, Holland. His Squadron included young men from Australia and New Zealand who are buried at Stonefall.  So far from home. I was also pleased to meet Elizabeth Smith from the CWG. Elizabeth will be our guest speaker in March. She will talk to us about women who also paid the ultimate price for our freedom.

Other members were busy laying wreathes in Knaresborough, Ripon, Wetherby and Pateley Bridge. Christabel makes sure we all get the wreathes in time. This is a tradition that the Club started nearly twenty years ago. LEST WE FORGET

Toilet Twinning

On the 15th of November I met with the Toilet Twinning Group at the St George Hotel.  It was a very productive meeting and great plans are afoot. The Club is on a mission for Harrogate District to achieve Toilet Twinning Status. Toilet Twining aims to ‘Flush Away Poverty, one toilet at time’.

Friendship Links

Like many of you, I really enjoyed our Friendship Link Evening on the 17th.  Janet and Judith did a fabulous job at organising the event.  Thanks to them and our Friendship Link Correspondents who keep our links going across the world. The biscuits,  reperesenting each of our Friendshiop links were delicious. It was our first ‘hybrid – interclub meeting’ – the technology worked most of the time too. We also raised money for our incoming Soroptimist International President Maureen Maquire’s  Appeal.  Hear Maureen present her vision here– Open Doors to a Bright Future.

Before I see you at the Business meeting, I will have:

  • Presented the Gill Smith Trophy to the best girl improver at Harrogate Spa Tennis Club on 24th of November
  • met with the Christmas Elves to plan our Christmas Party on the 15th of December– one not to be missed. It promises to be great fun.
  • Judged the Shop Window Competition in Ripon and Boroughbridge
  • Written my Christmas cards to make sure I get them to our own Christmas postal service on the 1st of


I am looking forward to seeing you all at our next meeting.  Please remember to wear something Christmassy for our Club photo Christmas Card.  Remember we will be presenting the Soroptimist Cup and Certificates for the Best Dressed Charity Shop Christmas Window at 6 pm.  All are welcome – just let Maureen know.

I hope you all keep safe and well.


Val Hills