Tuesday, 1 May 2012
WI April meeting
Old Buckenham WI’s April meeting started with a surprise visit from Amanda Cockburn (reception teacher at the village Primary School) who presented a copy of The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger to each WI member. The book was a gift and was one of a million given as part of World Book Night 2012 to spread the joy and love of reading.
The evening’s speaker, Alan Durand, took members on a journey through Yunnan and Sichuan, two provinces of South West China. His slides illustrated life in these rural provinces. Yunnan is the most south western province of China and shares borders with Burma, Laos, Vietnam and Tibet. The eastern half of the province is a limestone plateau with unnavigable rivers flowing through deep mountain gorges and the western half is characterised by mountain ranges and rivers including the Salween and Mekong rivers. The rugged vertical terrain produces a wide range of flora. The province includes the famous Burma Road which was a vital transportation route for wartime supplies to the Chinese government from Rangoon. The Burma Road’s importance diminished after World War II but it has remained a link in a 3,400 km road system from Yangoon, Burma to Chongqing. The province of Sichuan lies to the north of Yunnan and Alan showed slides of important pagodas in the region. The Yangtze River and its tributaries flow through the mountains of western Sichuan. One of these ranges, Daxue Shan, includes the highest point of the province – Gongga Shan, 7,556 metres in height.
Sheila Freake presented her report on the County Annual Meeting which she and three other members had attended in March. Speakers included Sue Spoerer from the National Pharmacy Association, who urged members to make more use of their local pharmacist, and the Deputy Chief Constable of Norfolk, Simon Bailey. He gave members an insight into the world of policing in Norfolk and the encouraging statistics which show that Norfolk is a very safe place to live. The afternoon speaker was Carol Bundock, a BBC presenter and newsreader. Carol enthralled her audience by sharing with them her personal experiences with the BBC and her appointment as Deputy Lieutenant of Norfolk.
Old Buckenham WI are of course sending a congratulatory card to HM Queen on her Jubilee and the card, based on the wall hanging in the village hall, was on display for members to see.
Some of the keen Scrabble players took part in the WI county competition in April and members were pleased to congratulate Susan Hunter and Gill Freitag on coming third out of 20-odd teams.
Old Buckenham WI gives an annual bursary of £150 to a member attending a course at Denman College (the WI’s own college in Oxfordshire) and the evening concluded with a draw for this year’s recipient who is Pat Shearing who can use this money towards a course any time in 2013.