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Saturday, 30 May 2015

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Women’s institute reports

ON a lovely July evening, what could be better than to have a summer floral demonstration?Allendale

After the monthly reports and finance business, Elizabeth introduced our speaker, Marjorie Read.

She brought a wonderful display of flowers, including roses, carnations, gypsophilia and many others, creating beautiful displays using pottery containers, plates and a cup and saucer set.

Members were shown various ways to create displays with the minimum of pieces.

The flowers were given as raffle prizes and four lucky ladies went home with them.

The competition was a pretty floral vase, won by Elizabeth.

Marjorie was thanked by Aileen for an enjoyable evening.

The members all went home with new ideas, and next time they buy flowers, they will try not to just put them in a vase – hopefully.

The next meeting will be the summer outing to the lavender fields in North Yorkshire.

September will be food quiz with a difference with George Robson, which seems intriguing, so why not go along and join them on Monday, September 1.

Olive White

HAVING quickly attended to the business items, president Karen Coleman introduced Norman Kirtlan as the speaker for the July meeting.

Mr Kirtlan is a retired policeman whose expertise was as a forensic artist.

It may sound slightly macabre, but there is a fascination about murder and unexplained deaths, and the investigating team use every method they can to discover what happened.

This is where the forensic artist comes in.

When asking a witness for a description, he will sketch in every relevant observation, and it is amazing how often this sketch matches a photograph of the perpetrator.

Not only did he use sketches, but all the other clues a trained eye can see. He was also able to reconstruct the facial appearance of an unidentified victim.

Mr Kirtlan accompanied his talk with an amazing array of photographs and drawings, and his commentary was very skilfully handled considering the subject under discussion was so serious.

As many of the cases he referred to were from the North-East, he was able to include the audience in a lively, and at times very witty, exchange of comments.

Ruth Barrass

THE July meeting started on a sad note as members took time to remember Aline Reed – a treasured member who died recently and who will be greatly missed at meetings.

A while ago, Hilary Robson suggested institutes in Northumberland ‘twinned’ with another institute, and six members of Prudhoe’s twin, Whittingham, joined the July meeting, when Beverley Withycombe brought her collection of handbags, scarves and jewellery.

Gillian Turner won the competition for a piece of jewellery, with Anne Jupp second, and Barbara Robinson and Edna Moscrop won the raffle prizes.

The outing to Seahouses was greatly enjoyed, with the weather being kind to us, and we are looking forward to visiting Horsley Women’s Institute in September.

Plans were finalised for our annual coffee evening in August.

Barbara Robinson

WARDEN ladies like to be active, especially during the lovely summer months and took a River Tyne boat trip in July, following the success of their last outing.

Giles Hodges, of Boldon Action Galleries, recently gave members inside information on their favourite TV antiques programmes.

Auctioneers work to encourage the best price possible for the seller, but everyone loves a bargain.

Giles talked about our items, brought for discussion, and bravely gave members his valuations.

His particular advice was that members should keep a photographic record of their jewellery, furniture and general possessions – as proof of ownership.

Eileen Mitchell brought a dragonfly made with knives, and this won our competition for an unusual object.

Julia Woolley

THE wild birds of the North Pennines were described by Christina Turner and Janet Fairclough from the RSPB.

They are both involved in conservation in the North Pennines area, more particularly the East and West Allen Valleys.

They gave a fascinating, illustrated talk about wading birds, such as curlew, snipe, redshank and oystercatchers, which use different parts of the pastures and moorland for nesting and feeding.

In fact, this area has the highest density of breeding waders in the UK.

Much of their time involves working with farmers and land owners about the best way to manage the land for the good of both man and nature.

Working with the wider community is also important and volunteers are needed to help sustain this important part of looking after our special area.