2018 NCFWI Delegates Report 2018



What a wonderful venue for our centenary Annual Meeting! Lots of space for the stalls selling bags, scarves, jewellery etc. Only time for a quick look and a cup of coffee before we were all invited to take our seats. The delegates all sat together, which would make counting votes a lot easier I’m sure!

After health and safety announcements from our federation secretary Jackie, we all stood to sing Jerusalem accompanied by pianist Brenda Griffiths. Beautifully sung by all.

Our Federation Chairman Sue Kendall then welcomed us all to the meeting along with our guests including Lynne Stubbings, our National Chair and Lord Lieutenant Mr David Laing together with representatives of neighbouring federations and new WIs Oundle and East Hunsbury.

The Lord Lieutenant then gave a short speech, congratulating us on our 100th birthday. He stressed the importance of the companionship and togetherness of the WI and congratulated us on our history of campaigning.

Standing orders, annual report and the minutes from the 2017 AGM were all approved unanimously.

Cate Purcell, our Federation Treasurer then stood to give her report. Being new to this post, she said how it had been a baptism of fire! She mentioned that because of the concentration our 100th birthday celebrations, profits were down this year. This coming year we needed to build up our reserves again. She thanked the IFE’S for their hard work and also the sub committees. The Financial statement for 2019 was approved.

Sue then stood to give her Address. The past year had been a very busy one for everyone. She thanked local companies for their support and also thanked the cake makers in the county who had baked the many cakes the trustees, on their tour took out to WIs celebrating a 100 years. Before the tour, Christine Farmer had suggested that the trustees did some sketches to take out to perform, along with the cake and bubbly! Sue thanked Shirley Corke who had written the sketches. Sue stressed that more support was needed from members for outings and events that County organise, a difficult task. She ended her address with thanks to all the trustees and members for their support. She had enjoyed her 4 years and described it as an incredible journey. She received a standing ovation from us all.

Jean Bates, our ACWW rep then took to the stage to thank us all for the support given to the various projects ACWW had held during the year. There is a meeting this month for discussion on further projects. The money taken for the Pauline Duff trophy this year (to knit a pair of socks) would be given to ACWW. She finished by saying that every penny collected makes a difference to another women’s life.

The subject for the 2019 Challenge trophy was launched by Ann Rodwell to design and plan a stress free sensory garden. More details would be forthcoming in the newsletter.

The subject for the Pauline Duff Trophy for 2019 was announced by Gwen Blackburn this being  to design and make an evening bag. Again more details to follow in the newsletter.

Lyne Stubbings, National Chair then stood to address us and after congratulating the Federation on our 100 years she told us of her rise to her present position 38 years ago, having known nothing about the WI then.  She asked us to support Denman as much as we could and talked of how we needed to harness technology and adapt working practises to include all women and to use the opportunities the WI has on offer. Christine Farmer thanked Lynne on our behalf.

The various bursaries were then drawn.

The first half concluded with a talk from William Sitwell, Writer, Editor, TV Presenter and Food Critic. He gave us a very amusing talk about how he came to be involved in the food industry.He told us how meat was not a sustainable food item in the long term due to environmental issues and how we should be trying to focus on more plant based meals. William was thanked by Jane Cooke.

The winner of the Challenge Trophy 2018 was announced, which had been for a sketch on the theme of Centenary, won by Hackleton & District WI.

The Board of Trustees for the coming year was then introduced by Jackie Andrews, Federation Secretary.

We broke for lunch, which gave us the opportunity to browse (and buy!) from the various stalls and to vote for our favourite pair of socks for the Pauline Duff trophy, winner to be announced later.

After lunch the various awards were presented by Lynne Stubbings and Kate Humble.

We were then treated to the excellent winning sketch.

The Pauline Duff trophy for the favourite pair of socks was won by Susan Couves of Thrapston WI and a total of £220 was raised for ACWW.

Kate Humble then gave her talk, which was both lively and amusing. She illustrated it with clips from the various jobs she had been involved with as a presenter, which included caving, falling head long into mud, and her search for an elusive shark!

She gave anecdotes from her time presenting various programmes “Wild in Your Garden” and “Springwatch” to name a couple. Her work presenting “Lambing Life” gave her her “light bulb moment” and she now runs a flock of sheep on her small holding along with bees and goats. Kate was thanked by Margaret Foster.

The raffle was then drawn and Sue was thanked for all her hard work over four years as Chairman and presented with flowers by Anne Seckington.  We all stood to sing the National Anthem and made our way home after an extremely enjoyable day.

Judith Leach (Long Buckby WI)