READING RETIREMENT CENTRE    (registered charity No. 281830)


(Friends in retirement taking relaxation, exercise and education)

September 2019                     Firtree Newsletter                  Issue 485

Welcome back from the wonderful weather of August. I hope you have all had a relaxing break and are ready for the Autumn. I have been told that the conkers are bigger than ever but no, we are not planning to have a competition. All our activities are back again, though bowls has never stopped. Here is a reminder of September and a look ahead to October for Tuesday mornings –

3rd Sep             Memories of the movies with Mark

10th Sep           Shannon Wilson introduces us to Talking Therapies

17th Sep           Living with dementia

24th Sep.          Helen Dormon takes us on her travels

1st Oct.             Simon Williams tells us about the great train robbery

8th Oct              Bert Randall gets our feet tapping.

15th Oct            Colin Ferguson talks about his book – Behind the Crime

22nd Oct           Founder’s day with David Jenkins at the piano

29th Oct            Richard Poad – ladies who flew the Spitfires

5th Nov.            Jaye Windmill on the Emergence of England

Bookings are now being taken for next year’s holiday in Cliftonville (Kent) but first we have the turkey and tinsel break in Torquay from Monday 9th December to Friday 13th. It’s not as strange as it might sound as the day time has outings around Devon, including visits to Looe and Plymouth, Brixham and Dartmouth and the market town of Totnes in time for you to get more of your Christmas shopping done. As we enjoy Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing day and New Year’s Eve the evenings have a festive nature but all the activities are optional. The Toorak hotel itself is part of a complex so there is plenty to do there as well as eating, sleeping and celebrating Christmas early.

There is still space, especially for doubles though some upgrades can be made available. The cost of £325.00 includes all breakfasts and dinners, all travel and all trips as well as en suite accommodation. Please let Gloria know as soon as possible. Friends will be welcome as well.

Reading is once again holding an Older People’s Day at the Butts centre on Monday September 30th. This is always a useful event to make ourselves known and we have been offered a space again so we will need some volunteers to help on the day to talk about Firtree.

Before then on Friday 6th September there is an older people’s meeting at the Civic Centre from 2.00 p,m,  All older folk are welcome to come to this meeting which will include an update on public transport. That is holding a strategy consultation at present but it will close later this month.

Now is a good time to give us your ideas about talks or outings. It may seem very early but your committee need to plan well ahead for things like outings or holidays and even for the talks.

Table tennis may have to be suspended for a while as the table has been vandalised and is not useable. but numbers had already dropped away. Those playing bowls have also dropped even though very enjoyed by those of us who do attend. Are members no longer fit enough or energetic enough for our more active events? Even whist has a very fluctuating membership!

With considerable changes in work practices and an increasing age before retirement pension, will we be able to sustain our numbers in the future with our current activities? What do you think will be needed most in the future?

With thanks to ‘The good old laugh’ –   Grandparents Observed –

  1. a) My husband and I have decided to start a family while my parents are still young enough to look after them, (Rita Rudner)
  2. b) Grandmother, as she gets older, is not fading, but becoming more concentrated.
  3. c) Don’t retouch the wrinkles in the photograph. I would not want it to be thought that I had lived for all these years without having anything to show for it. (The Queen Mother)

If you want to know more about  Firtree, contact Colin Ferguson ( or Liz Prior on 0118 942 2958


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