HYDE HEATH Jayne Faversham, President, wished everyone a very Happy New Year.
At the start of the meeting a presentation of a giant cheque for £725 was made to Chris Leach, from the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance Trust, who was most appreciative.
He updated members on progress with the Air Ambulance service, which covers Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.
A new helicopter with night vision facilities is coming into service which will operate from 8am through to 3am. The crew will all have night vision goggles, which cost £18,000 each.
There will be two trained trauma doctors sharing shifts on board which will enable immediate roadside treatment to take place and, therefore, save many more lives.
Our speaker for the evening, Sue Benwell, was introduced and gave a talk on The Life of Sir Norman Wisdom, which was the title of a book which she and his personal assistant, Ann Axe, wrote together after Sue met him when he was about 80 years old.
Despite Norman Wisdom being such an amusing comic and actor, we were shocked to hear that he had the most traumatic childhood and teenage life. He was born in Marylebone on February 4, 1915.
His father treated Norman and his older brother extremely badly and was very violent towards them all.
When he was nine years old, his mother left the family home and the brothers had to fend for themselves as the father was away for weeks at a time.
After about two years, the boys were fostered but were very wild in their behaviour so were separated and eventually both settled with good families.
After a series of adventures, mishaps and many different jobs, including joining an army band, where he was taught to play various musical instruments, after the war he first went onto the stage at Collins Music Hall on December 17, 1945 and found his niche in life.
After a delicious tea, the meeting continued. The Christmas party was a great success with a delicious meal supplied by the Committee and desserts by members.
Voting took place on the seven Resolutions that will be selected for the NFWI Centenary Annual Meeting on June 4 at the Royal Albert Hall, when a delegate from Hyde Heath will attend.
A card had been received from Audrey Begg’s family thanking the Group for their donation in her memory to the Royal Brompton Paediatric Cystic Fibrosis fund.
Next month’s meeting will be at 8pm on Thursday, February 12 when Sandrine Anterion will give a demonstration and talk on Belly Dancing. The competition will be ‘A Tassel’.