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Illston on the Hill WI

The Revd Canon Alan Haydock, our speaker, was born in Wigan and educated at the King’s School in Ely. He trained at Kelham Theological College and since has served the whole of his ministry in Nottinghamshire, becoming Canon of Southwell Minster in 1986.

Over the past 30 years Alan has donated over £95,000 to various churches charities and sporting organisations by means of his speaking fees. He is a keen sportsman and one of the few supporting Notts County!

He firstly apologised for not feeling too well as they were celebrating his father-in-law’s 104th birthday the night before - a sharp intake of breath from the audience before he went on to tell us his father-in-law died when he was 60! The evening was full of anecdotes and stories, including telling us of an anagram of ‘Houses of Parliament’ being ‘Loonies up the Thames’ (think this may be relating to Brexit). Alan was very entertaining and we wished him well with his future fundraising.

We have been collecting warm clothes, etc. for the UK homeless and also bras (yes, you read that correctly) to be sent to some of the poorest Africa areas. Seemingly if a girl or woman wears a bra it brings her status and it most certainly makes people aware, and the acts of abuse are dramatically reduced as these women are so much more respected.

We attended the Annual Council Meeting of the WI in Great Glen on in March. Speakers were Captain Michael Vlasto of Trinity House and Laura Bingham, adventurer and explorer spoke about her recent trip to Guyana. You can read more about this in the Kibworth & Smeeton WI article.
After lunch we had an extremely interesting presentation from three women one from each of the armed services. Between them the forces offer over 10,000 apprenticeships per year and there are guaranteed jobs at the end of training.

The final speaker of the day was broadcaster and writer, Gyles Brandreth. He used to wear some fairly loud jumpers apparently made by a Leicester company or him, he doesn’t wear them much now, but may well to do in the near future when he has been asked to take part in a biking and hiking holiday with Ann Widdecombe in North Wales! You can imagine the laughter with which this announcement was greeted.

A wonderful speaker and entertainer. We all had a thoroughly enjoyable day.


Jane Shute
Issue 411
April 2019


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