READING RETIREMENT CENTRE    (registered charity No. 281830)


(Friends in retirement taking relaxation, exercise and education)

 November 2019              Firtree Newsletter                       Issue 487

 It was a shame we were unable to hold the Founders Day Service due to David Jenkins ill health. Many thanks to Mark for stepping into the breach again having been asked at ten o’clock the evening before.

There seems to be a lot of illness around including yours truly. It has been quite energy sapping but I still managed to get my flu jab in and if you haven’t had this yet it is strongly advised that you do. Your local chemist can do it if the doctor’s surgery is packed out.

Local radio has just told me that it is less than two months before Christmas so by the time you read this it will be even less!! As Corporal Jones might say, DON’T PANIC!! Where has the year gone??

Here is our Tuesday morning programme for the rest of the year –

5th November      Jaye Windmill talks on the emergence of England

12th November    Mark’s winter quiz

19th November    Anna Rhys Williams talking on later life planning

26th November   John Whitehead on the Reading trolley buses and buses

3rd December      Party pieces – let Colin know what you will be willing to do                             for our annual self-produced entertainment.

10th December    While many of us are away on the holiday Mark will tease your                             minds with a Christmas show from the past

17th December    Firtree Christmas Service with the Revd David Jenkins and                     the Firtree choir

And that is it folks until 2020 – January 7th – same place, same time.

Watch out for the shopping days and remember to wrap up warm and keep safe. This winter may be very cold.

The table tennis table is working again and will be available on Tuesday afternoons but please let Janet know if you want to play as our numbers are very few.

The arts and crafts group has been working hard on the rainbow quilt though the last meeting only had four workers there, mainly due to holidays and illness. After that they will be making lavender dollies. The raffle for the throw has been drawn and both second and third prizes have been claimed but not the winner, so if you have number 357 you have until 20th November to claim the throw otherwise it will be drawn again – so do not throw your tickets away! The 20th November is the next meeting of the group.

The October meeting of the Garden circle had a very wet but enjoyable day at Beale Park. The brave walked round the animal enclosures though everyone enjoyed the train ride and the cream tea. The next meeting is on the 11th November when we have a trip down to Dobbie’s garden centre. Meeting at 1.00 p.m. by the YMCA for transport.

Having discovered that our actual founding day was early June in 1972 we have agreed to hold our Founder’s Day meeting in June. Next one is our 48th birthday, so only two years to go before our golden Jubilee. Ideas on how to celebrate this cannot come in too early.

If you have a concern about hearing loss a free information service, we will try to get the manager along to talk about this in the New year

So the 31st October has come and gone and hopefully all the witches and warlocks have flown away so we can celebrate the failure of Guy Fawkes and his friends to blow up parliament. Hopefully after the election, we will have a government that works on what is best for the nation rather than just the obsession with Brexit.

The coach for Torquay, turkey and tinsel at the Tooray Hotel will leave from the YMCA. on Monday 9th December and return on the Friday The time needs to be confirmed so watch this space, but will probably be 9.30 a.m. return about 3.00 p.m.. It is also time to pay deposits for the Summer break at Cliftonville in Kent once Gloria has returned from her journeys down under. There is still plenty of room for this holiday especially for doubles.

Apparently in 1960 a young Judi Dench was playing Shakespeare’s Juliet at the old Vic Theatre in London. As she tells it she was crouching over the lifeless body of her cousin Tybalt, crying out “Where are my father and mother, nurse?” when her actual father, a doctor, who was in the audience with her mother was apparently seized by a senior moment, stood up and announced, “Here we are dear, in row H.”

A few witticisms from ‘A good old laugh’:

– The older you get the more important it is not to act your age

– No one is ever old enough to know better

– You grow up the day you have the first real laugh- at yourself.

– We don’t stop playing because we are too old, we grow old because we stop playing (George Bernard Shaw)

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

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