Northam & District Men's Forum Recent Meetings and Programme
New Year, New Stories
Northam & District Men’s Forum finished 2012 with its well loved and supported Carol Concert and Christmas Lunch. As usual children and staff of St Margaret’s Primary School put on an excellent concert at Northam Methodist Church. The theme this year was from the Arabian Nights with songs and dancing from the children who were also dressed up for their parts. Members joined in the Christmas Carols and all greatly appreciated the performance. Also in December the Forum enjoyed a quality Christmas Lunch at the Merry Harriers Garden Centre which was very well attended and included a quiz culminating in a ‘sing-off’ to win.
The first meeting of the New Year started with the Annual Raffle and then Forum Members Sid Masters, Fred Lush, Dave Nicholson, and Mike Federl all addressed the Forum with some of their own stories. Sid talked about the connections between Arlington Court and the Forum - he does voluntary work at Arlington; The Forum has had speakers connected with Arlington; and a splendid plate presented to Sid at Arlington was made by Harry Juniper who had also spoken at the Forum recently on his Bideford pottery.
Fred showed us a collection of amazing videos he had collected. The funniest was a cat apparently attempting to work out how to use a computer printer. Dave related a storey of his life in the airforce when he got to know two cooks. One an ex-boxer called Sixty, so named because he was once knocked out in sixty seconds, and the other named Fultcher. The storey involved accepting a lift in Sixty’s girlfriend’s father’s car for which Sixty held no driving licence - breaking down next to a policeman - and the same policeman giving them a helping hand. It was a close run thing but they got away with it! Mike’s storey also involved a car and a helping hand from a policeman!
The following week normal service was resumed when Noel Bevan gave a talk on his life as a Naval Surgeon. Noel qualified in 1976 and his first posting was at the Royal Navy Hospital at Haslar, Gosport, near Portsmouth. It was run like a ship at sea. Following his officer training in 1978 his first posting at sea was on HMS Scylla. He did not travel with the Falklands Task Force in 1982 but recalled that although the ‘Britannia’ was meant for use as a hospital ship she was too small and instead the passenger ship ‘SS Uganda’ sailed with the fleet. HMS Argus is the Navy’s current hospital ship although it is classified as a ‘casualty receiving facility’ and bears no red cross so that it can be used for other purposes. On land there is now only one multi-service land based hospital which is located at Selly Oak, Birmingham, where all casualties are taken.
Our next speaker was the Reverend Peter Whatton who spoke about his experiences of living and working in Jerusalem. During his visits he helps run the Garden Tomb, considered by some to be the site of the burial and resurrection of Jesus. Visitors come from all over the world to the Garden. Peter acts as a guide and tells the storey of Easter.
Why not join us to listen to more interesting speakers in a friendly atmosphere. Come along on Thursdays, 10:15am to noon at the Methodist Church Hall, Cross Street, Northam. You can find out more details about the full programme and activities of the Forum by ringing Eric on 01237 478123 or Chris on 01237 476201 or visit our website at www.nothammmensforum.org.uk .
Meetings to the end of February are:
Thursday, January 24th : Liz Shakespeare talks on ‘Research and Creative Writing’.
Thursday, January 31st : Stephanie Fry talks on ‘Psychology’.
Thursday, February 7th: Piers Langdon talks on ‘Action Ethiopia’.
Thursday, February 14th: Sharon Francis talks on ‘Hypnotherapy’.
Thursday, February 21st: Bob Dale talks on ‘Holiday in Egypt’.
Thursday, February 28th: Dave Eadie talks on ‘Photography’.