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Newsletter - December 2008


Season’s Greetings

From all of the Committee, a very happy Christmas and excellent New Year. Although we are at the end of the calendar year, our membership season has four months to run until 30th April 2009. Nevertherless, we hope we can allow ourselves a look back over the 12 months of 2008 and be pleased with what we have accomplished, including an excellent selection of lectures, interesting visits at home and abroad, plus successful events such as the Garden Party and Study Day. Our membership number has also grown.

Design for the year 2009/10 is taking shape, lectures are in place and work is in hand for the Study Day at a new venue, as well as planning for the Garden Party. We look forward to seeing you at many events and meetings.

The Christmas Party & Lecture

The evening on December 9th was very well attended and entertaining, with mulled wine and food, and even more members and guests present than last year. The seasonal talk was by Nicholas Reed, ‘Frost Fairs on the Frozen Thames’, an evocative look back in paintings and sketches of past winter festivities on the river’s sheet of ice, substantial enough then to carry crowds and stalls. More than an insight into the fun and games depicted by various artists, Nicholas Reed showed how the Thames boatmen extracted payment for people wanting access to the river, explained that fires lit on the ice were unlikely to melt through it, and questioned the belief that a mini ice age was responsible for especially low temperatures. A good range of questions after the talk confirmed that the topic was much enjoyed.

The Byzantium Trip

We are delighted that our planned visit to the Royal Academy on Thursday 26th February 2009  (Byzantium and Andrea Palladio exhibitions) has proved so popular. Of the coach’s 49 seats, all have been taken up. We are running a waiting list as the visit is oversubscribed, as occasionally there are unavoidable cancellations. We are also talking to the morning group to see if they have any spare seats on their March trip, to avoid disappointing members. Please contact Madeline Weston if you have any queries. (Address on the visits flyer and in your membership card.)

The Programme Committee

We are delighted to welcome one our members, Naomi Milne, to the sub-committee responsible for the invaluable work of selecting, booking and accommodating monthly speakers. She joins our new full-committee member, Liz Pierce. As you will know, after many years heading this sub-committee, Pat Stuart has helped us by leading it again; in due course it is hoped she will have a team available to ease her responsibility. Naomi has previously been events and trips organiser for the ‘World Monuments Fund In Britain’, a charity assisting with the preservation of historic buildings. We are very grateful to her for offering her services.

Next Meeting – 20th January 2009

Our speaker will be Mary Alexander, her topic ‘The Paris Arts Decoratifs Exhibition of 1925.’ This exhibition was immensely influential on future design trends and the talk promises to be fascinating. We look forward to seeing all of you on Tuesday, 20th January.


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