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Aug 03

Norman Coward Remote Ethiopia – Providing Health Posts and Clean Water

Following the very interesting and successfully August Monthly Meeting on this topic a spontaneous collection was taken from those attending and over £300 was raised to help fund the projects being run in Ethiopia.  We have had a letter of appreciation from the speaker and his wife who have established the developments in health, education and water provision which we heard about in the talk.  There is a weblink provided here for anyone who may wish to find out more  this is a combination of small charities our speaker reports under the Norman and Carole heading.

Jul 18

Shared Learning Project – The Old Royal Naval College Greenwich 100 Years of the WRNS

The Old Royal Naval College Greenwich

As part of the national celebrations to mark 100 years since the formation of the Women’s Royal Naval Service, the Old Royal Naval College will be hosting an exhibition focusing on the WRNS in Greenwich.  We are looking for U3A volunteers to work collaboratively with ORNC staff and former personnel from the Greenwich WRNS to develop the exhibition as part of this Shared Learning Project.

Meetings will take place fortnightly at the Old Royal Naval College; starting on Wednesday 28thSeptember at 11.a.m.

The minimum time for each meeting will be 2 hours, but if members wish to stay longer they will be very welcome.  The expectation is that between meetings members of the team will carry out their own research to feed back at the fortnightly meetings.

To start with we are looking for volunteers who can make a 6, 10 or 12 week commitment with the opportunity to continue until the summer 2017. We are looking for people who have an interest in:



Interviewing (people with experience in conducting and recording oral histories)

Opportunities for research include:

  • The ORNC archives
  • To interview people who lived and studied at Greenwich
  • The National Maritime Museum archives
  • The Imperial War Museum archives

If you are interested in joining this project, please contact Linda Crook at for an application form by 31st August 2016





The Old Royal Naval College flyer 2-1

Jul 18

Shared Learning Project – Oh Brother Where Art Thou? Charterhouse is looking to Research the Lives of past Brothers

Shared Learning Project – Oh Brother Where Art Thou?

 This autumn the Charterhouse is looking to research the lives of past Brothers of the Charterhouse

 This project will seek to look to into the lives of past Brothers from the 17th and 18th century. Spanning a range of professions, from florists to lieutenants, the Charterhouse has admitted a striking list of intriguing personalities.

We are now looking to find out more about who these men were their personal records, career, family and where possible create a short biography for inclusion in our forthcoming Museum exhibit focused on the lives of present and past Brothers.

Over its long history, the Charterhouse has witnessed many of the events that have shaped our nation. The story begins in 1348 during the Black Death, when the land was used as a burial ground for victims of plague. In 1371, the Charterhouse was built – a Carthusian monastery, which flourished throughout the later medieval and early Tudor period.

The team will be working at the London Metropolitan Archives in Islington. Each member of the team will be required to attend regularly and devote time to meaningful research on the topic outside of the scheduled meetings.

Some research may also need to be carried out at the National Archives in Kew. The data collected will be inputted into a spreadsheet via an online form so basic competency in the use of PCs and the internet is essential.

If you enjoy research and like working as part of a group, but can also be motivated to work independently then this could be the SLP for you.

There will be a team of 12 plus a project leader. The project members will meet weekly from 14:00—16:00 on Wednesdays from 5 October 2016 to 7 December 2016 at the Charterhouse. There will be two additional meetings in January to prepare for, and showcase, our findings to a small, invited audience.


If you are interested in joining this project, please contact Linda Crook at for an application form by 1 September 2016

Charterhouse flyer 2-1

Jul 07

U3A National Summer Schools 1 and 2 August 2016 Cirencester

Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester, GL7 6JS

School 1: 8 – 11 August 2016 School 2: 15 – 18 August 2016  To see the full programme please click on the link below


Jun 21

A Phd Research Request from Kingston University – Age Related Decline in Memory !

Dear U3A Members

My name is Zoë McHayle and I am a first year PhD psychology student at Kingston University London. I am writing this letter to you as I am looking for retired and/or semi-retired healthy adults to participate in my study from 1st July 2016 to 30th September 2016. I will be investigating age-related decline in visuospatial working memory and visuospatial attention. I will be using technology such as eye trackers and the experiment will include memory tasks and visual search tasks.
If this study sounds like an activity that your members would be happy to take part in I would really appreciate hearing from you. Please send an email to and I will be happy to give you further details on the aims and design of my study and potential dates.

Thank you for your time.

I look forward to your reply.

Yours faithfully,

Zoë McHayle
Psychology Research Student
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Kingston University London

Mar 13

Cleaning Silver – More Information Following Our Monthly Meeting Talk on Silver

Some questions followed the talk on how best to preserve and clean silver and these are  the web links sent by Dr Kirstin Kennedy from the V & A.

Dear Elinor,

Thank you for taking the trouble to pass on these kind comments, I’m really so glad your audience enjoyed the talk.
I must say I rather enjoyed giving it (and while I am looking forward to savouring the bottle of wine you generously gave me on a special occasion, it is nice to be able to enjoy the coasters every day! – I am very protective of my “mid-century modern” dining table!)
Apologies about the size of some of the slides – so difficult to tell when loading them on the small screen what they will be like on the big screen. (Oh for the days of real slides…)
I am not very used to handling a mike, and clearly my attempts to strike a balance between booming and pleasantly audible didn’t always work. Maybe one solution is simply to tell your next speaker to arrive in time for a warm-up, so he/she can get used to it, and you can check the decibels from the back of the hall.
Just a post-script to a couple of questions I was asked … you wanted to know about regimental silver.  A colleague suggests contacting the National Army Museum, who now look after all the regimental museums:
And a lady asked about cleaning silver: this is the link to the page on the practical side of the subject written by our conservators:

Many thanks again for cheering up my Friday!

Aug 28

Communal Gardening

Kingston Council are keen to support a volunteer group which would maintain/care for a part of a park/public space – pruning, weeding etc.  This sounds a worthwhile initiative.

Anyone interested please contact: The Green Spaces Officer:    or    alternatively our Stewart Keating:

Aug 24

Kingston U3A AGM 2015 – Advance Notification

Notice of 2015 AGM

In accordance with the constitution of the U3A, notice is hereby given that the AGM of Kingston U3A will take place at the Mayo Hall, The United Reformed Church, Eden Street, Kingston, KT1 1HZ, at 1.30pm on Monday 2 November 2015.  Joy Garvey Secretary

Nominations for Committee Members

We welcome applications from current members interested in joining our active Executive Committee to help run our highly successful U3A.

A form is available on our website, or you can just send the following information in writing:

Full name of Nominee, Proposer and Seconder, with membership numbers and signatures of all three, to Joy Garvey, KU3A Secretary, 5 Dennan Road, Surbiton, KT6 7RY, or hand it to a committee member, by noon on Monday 19 October 2015.

Nomination Form 2015

Aug 08

Membership Renewals – Kingston U3A

This year there will be 3 methods of distributing Membership Cards: 1. Fill in the enclosed green renewal form and send with a cheque and small self-seal stamped addressed envelope to Jane Hoyland this week. 2. Or fill in the form and bring to a Monthly Meeting with a cheque, preferably on Monday 7 September or 5 October, rather than leaving until later. 3. As a new experiment, if you have already set up a Standing Order to pay on 1 October, we are sending your card with this Autumn Newsletter. These 60 people will not need to complete a renewal form. If your details have changed (e.g. address or Gift Aid status) please let Linda Foreman know.

People who wish to join the Standing Order scheme for the first time this year should arrange this with their banks for 1 October, then fill in the renewal form and send it to Jane Hoyland with an s.a.e. or bring it to a Monthly Meeting as above. We will adjust the records for next year to save you time and postage.

We send this Autumn Newsletter in print to everyone, whether or not they usually have communications by email only.

Jul 10

U3A SW London Consortium Participatory Study Day – World War II in SW London


United Reform Church, Eden Street, Kingston upon Thames Tuesday, October 6th, 2015

Please come with memorabilia from WW II and any memories or experiences you would like to share. There will be music and images from the period and several talks on the following topics:

War time uses of Richmond and Bushy Parks. Life in SouthWest London during the war. Rationing of food and other items. Bombing in the Wimbledon area.

Speakers: Max Lankester Pieter Morpurgho Norman Plastow Amy Graham


Registration and tea and coffee (free)10-10.30. First session: talks and questions 10.30 –12.30. Lunch: 12.30 -1.45. Cafes and restaurants nearby, or bring packed lunch. (Tea and coffee available. ) Afternoon session: 1.45 –3.30. Fourth talk.

This will be followed by Susan Leigh describing evacuation experiences in Wandsworth, to introduce the “Show and Tell” session.


Application Form: Name……………………………………………………………………………………………………… U3A……………………………………..Email address………………………………………….. If no email please enclose a s.a.e. with your cheque £8, payable to Wandsworth U3A Send to: Elinor Parker, 16, Alric Avenue, New Malden, KT3 4JN

Nov 25

OUR SILVER ANNIVERSARY Events in 2016 (More Coherent if you Click on Read More))

Date & Events 201619

19 January

Planting of birch tree on Queens Promenade by the mayor with a plaque commemorating the event.Date TBA

1 Feb

Commemorative Presentation to senior Kingston U3A members at the monthly meeting.

7 March

(Monthly Meeting) Speaker from the V & A to speak on silver

11 May

Tea at Warren House 3.00pm

10 and 16 June

River trips: starting at Kingston, lunch at Thames Ditton, then by boat from Windsor to Runnymede

14 July

Lunch at Warren House 12.30 for 1.00pm

6, 7 and 8 September

High-speed boat trips on the Thames

14 September

Walk, (one long, 5hrs+; one medium, 1hr+; and one short, 45mins) in Richmond Park

26 October

Kingston U3A fair at United Reformed Church – a day event to show Kingston what we are up to

5 December

Retrospective slide presentation of the year’s events at the December monthly meeting

Date TBA

Kingston U3A Singers concert


Nov 01

Stanley Picker Gallery & Dorich House Museum – Relaunch Oct 2015

The Russian artist Dora Gordine (1895-1991) is one of the main protagonists and principal subjects of our upcoming 2015/16 programme, as we prepare for the relaunch of Kingston University’s Dorich House Museum in October. Following the Postgraduate shows in Fine Art and Photography (22-26 Sept), the Stanley Picker Gallery will be staging Dora (8 Oct-28 Nov) with artists Fiona Banner, Cullinan Richards, Hilary Lloyd and Nicole Wermers each selecting objects from Dorich House Museum’s collections to be shown alongside works of their own…more

Nov 25

North Yorkshire and the Dales – 6 days – Sunday 24 April – Friday 29 April 2016

Day 1 – We set out in our private executive coach making a comfort stop en-route to our main stop, Calke Abbey (NT). As well as exploring the house and gardens, you can buy lunch. We leave in the afternoon, travelling to Skipton where we check into the 3* Rendezvous Hotel for a five-night stay on a half-board basis.

Day 2 – Accompanied by our local guide, today we start with a short canal cruise from the hotel into the centre of Skipton during which morning coffee will be served. On arrival we will walk the short distance to the 900-year old Skipton Castle where a guided tour is included. There will be free time afterwards for us to purchase an early lunch and visit the traditional street

market before this afternoon’s excursion to Bronte Country and the Pennine village of Haworth, where we visit the Haworth Parsonage, home of the Bronte family (entrance included).

Day 3 – With our local guide we travel by coach to Ripley Castle where entrance fee and a guided tour is included. The castle’s history is one of political, military, religious and social turbulence, and also one of romance, courage and loyalty. We continue on to the nearby spa town of Harrogate, famous for its horticulture, historic buildings, stunning scenery and natural springs. There will be free time to purchase lunch here before our afternoon’s included visit to RHS Harlow Carr Garden, located on the town’s outskirts.

Day 4 – Today is dedicated to historic York, where on arrival we will start with an included guided tour of the city on foot. The rest of the day is free to explore York’s Roman, Viking and Medieval heritage, including JORVIK, the Castle Museum, Clifford’s Tower (EH) or the famous Minster (entrances are all payable locally), or the National Railway Museum (free entry).

You can enjoy a stroll around York’s unique alleys (The Shambles) and passages which link up the medieval streets or take afternoon tea in the famous Betty’s Café Tearooms. You will be provided with a map of the city centre showing the location of various places of interest.

Day 5 – Today is a leisurely day as (accompanied by our local guide), we travel by coach to the market town of Settle where we join the Settle – Carlisle railway for a scenic train journey through the Yorkshire National Park region, over the Ribblehead viaduct to Appleby. Here we re-join the coach for the journey to Hawes, Yorkshire’s highest market town which lies on the Pennine Way. Lunch can be purchased at the Wensleydale Creamery where the famous local cheese is made, or in the town itself, before we continue through the spectacular Dales. There will be some free time in the village of Grassington in the heart of ‘Calendar Girls’ country, which is a well preserved village with an old style square and cobbled streets. An afternoon cream tea is included whilst here, after which you can explore a little at your leisure before we return to Skipton.

Day 6 – We check out of the hotel after breakfast and head for Chatsworth House (entrance included). The house has over 30 rooms to explore, and houses one of Europe’s most significant art collections. We leave in mid-afternoon, and make a further comfort stop en-route, returning to our original departure points in early evening.

Departure time: 9am Kingston and other pickup points (full details to be advised later)

Cost: £599 per person sharing a double/twin

Single room supplement: £35 (these are twin /double rooms for sole use)

Deposit:: £75 per person (non- returnable) payable on booking

Balance: payable by 7 March 2016

Insurance: £30 per person if required (no upper age limit, but conditions apply)

For more information and detailed booking form, please complete the enclosed application form, and send it with a stamped self-addressed envelope (large enough to take 2 -3 sheets of A4 paper) to Stewart Keating, 17 Herne Road, Surbiton, KT6 5BX

Phone: 020 8397 5561

This holiday is organised by Simply Groups, and your contract will be with them. Full information is given on the booking form.


Nov 17

Summer School Chichester Monday, 27th – 30th June 2016 – Booking Open

Programme of Events

Medieval & Georgian Chichester
Drawing with pen and enhancing with colour wash Astronomy, then and now
Understanding Deviance and Crime
Some 20th C Poets and their poetry
Seventy years of Changing Britain
Jazz, Blues and Folk Music in the USA
Psychology: Thinking, Feeling and Behaviour Mathematics Explored
The Golden Age of Dutch Art
Playreading with discussion
Some Great Houses and Gardens in Sussex
Enjoy more Bridge, Enjoy Bridge more
History of Aviation on the South Coast
Walking in and Around Chichester

Cost: Residential in single en-suite accommodation Residential in single standard accommodation

Non residential with evening meal
Non residential without evening meal
Some courses will have additional charges for entrance fees etc.

Further details and booking forms will be available at

£320 £290 £200 £150

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May 31

Celebrating Twenty Five Years of Kingston U3A in 2016!

Kingston U3A will be celebrating its silver jubilee, or twenty fifth anniversary, in 2016 and we will be marking the achievement in various ways.

A small subcommittee has been set up and is open to suggestions. Please send them to Richard Hawkins and think how any groups you are in can mark this. We are thinking initially of a tea party, a posh lunch, a boat trip, a walk round Richmond Park, possibly planting a silver birch somewhere in the borough.

We plan an Autumn Fair, open to the public, showcasing the work of all the groups. Book groups could plan a display of colourful covers of books they have read, with discussion questions attached, poetry groups could offer readings throughout the day, art and craft groups can show their work, singing and dancing groups could perform. Bridge, Scrabble and Mah Jong groups can demonstrate their skills, theatre groups could offer a display of programmes of shows they have attended. We ought to show the range of outings and holidays we organise.

Think silver, think twenty five! Get planning!

May 31

U3A National Conference and AGM 25 & 27 August

This year’s U3A national conference and AGM takes place at the East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham on 26 and 27 August.

Open to all members, it will be a two-day mixture of workshops, discussions and opportunities to network with fellow U3A members from all over the country and promises to be great fun as well. There’s even an opportunity to learn of life on Mars and post apocalyptic civilisation.

The AGM itself, for which there is no charge, takes place on the last day, Thursday 27 August while the full residential cost from Tuesday 25 to Thursday 27 August is £190. To register for the conference pack which will contain full details, go to

Apr 30

TED Talks and Online Learning

Ever heard of these or seen some already?  “TED is a nonprofit organisation devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 100 languages”.  These are really worth a look, not to say several.  The speakers are not only leading authorities in their fields but great speakers.  1900 + titles cover a huge range of topics which you can look at individually but  are also gathered into playlists around linked topics. If you happen to have Netflix you see lots there to.  Radio 4 Extra have also been linking up with TED talks.

Mar 01

The Castles, Historic Houses and Gardens of North Wales – Five days from Monday 19th October 2015

Caernarfon Castle

Day 1 We depart in our private executive coach and en route to our hotel we visit the National Memorial Arboretum near Litchfield. On arrival in Caernarfon we check in at the 3* Celtic Royal Hotel for a four night stay on half-board basis.

Day 2 in the morning we meet our Blue Badge Guide who will accompany us throughout the day. First we visit Caernarfon Castle. Begun in 1283 as the definitive chapter in Edward I’s conquest of Wales, Caernarfon was constructed not only as a military stronghold but also as a seat of government and royal palace. We then visit the National Trust’s Plas Newydd Country House and Gardens. Associated with the 1st Marquess of Anglesey, who commanded the cavalry at the Battle of Waterloo, Plas Newydd is a beautiful 18th Century Country House with spectacular views across the Menai Strait to Snowdonia.


Day 3 we visit, with our guide, Portmeirion and in the afternoon enjoy a scenic excursion on the Festiniog Narrow Gauge Railway from Minffordd Station to Blaenau Festiniog. We continue to the LLechwedd Slate Caverns where you may choose to embark on the Victorian Mine Tour (there are 61 steps to climb down and 70 steps to climb up again). The tour involves a ride on the steepest cable railway in Britain before we all hear about the life of a Victorian family at work in the mines. The entrance fee for the Victorian Mine Tour is not included in the Tour price.

Day 4 brings us to the NT property at Bodnant Gardens. Featuring huge Italianate terraces and offering stunning views across to Snowdonia, this is one of the world’s most spectacular gardens. In the afternoon we have a guided tour of Conwy Castle. Completed in 1287 and one of Edward I’s chain of Welsh fortresses, Conwy Castle is a gritty, dark stoned fortress which has the rare ability to evoke an authentic medieval atmosphere. In the afternoon you may also choose to visit the NT’s Aberconwy House dating from the 14th Century.

Day 5, after checking out of our hotel, we visit the award winning Compton Verney art gallery. Located in the setting of a grade 1 listed Robert Adam mansion, Compton Verney contains an outstanding collection of British, Neopolitan, Germanic and Chinese paintings.

Cost: £ 410.00 pp sharing a twin room

£ 75.00 deposit – non- refundable, payable with booking

£ 99.00 single room supplement

£ 16.00 insurance – upper age limit: 85 years

For a detailed booking form please complete the enclosed application form and send it with a stamped self- addressed envelope (not too small please) to:

Gisela Zürcher-Feiß, 37, The Byeways, Surbiton KT5 8HT – Tel 8399 4990

The Castles Historic House etc. application


Jan 22

Architecture Group – Walks Re-Starting March 2015

The Architecture Group do guided walks in the Spring and Summer for  U3A members who would like to book a place even if you are not a permanent member of that Group. Several ran very successfully last year and the new list of walks for 2015 is now available.

There are two opportunities to do each walk in March and April and this will continue in later months if the demand is there.  All walks start at 10.15  – venues will be notified to those who book in. To Book a Place please contact Stephen van Dulken  on or on 07854 453109

New Dates  2015

March 16th or 23rd             King’s Cross  – British Library the Railway Stations, St Martins School of Art and other New Developments in the area.

April 27th or May 5th        Kensington    – Victoria and Albert Museum, Harrods and other mainly 19th century buildings.

May 18th                                    Islington       – mainly  Regency Houses.

June 29th                                 East End       – Geffrye Museum down to Spitalfields via Columbia Road taking in Brick Lane and the Huguenot Streets

Jan 14

Drawing and Painting Group 2 – has (most unusually) vacancies! Can you make use of them?

Drawing and Painting Group 2 meet in the United Reform Church Kingston on a Tuesday afternoon.  We are a happy group of sixteen, mixed ability, mixed gender, but who all have a real love of putting, pen, pencil, brush,  or whatever to paper.  We are lucky enough to have an excellent tutor in Charles Penny, who since joining us some 18 months ago, has breathed new life into our perceptions and given us the enthusiasm to try new things.  We were lucky enough to be able to show our work recently at the CornerHOUSE Theatre in Tolworth and during the course of the exhibition a total of 12 paintings were sold, which was very gratifying.

Please Contact  – Carolyn Forsyth 02082551746 or 07939824730 or