It’s amazing how easy it is, in an archive that’s not fully organised, but has certain things stuffed randomly in envelopes, to lose salient pieces of information. That’s my excuse, anyway, for missing this lovely letter that Peter Aldcroft wrote to welcome senior Lions from the District to a special cabinet meeting at Deneholme in the spring of 2009. Of course, Nigel Baynes had laminated the letter, so it must have been an honour to host the meeting, something to be remembered. Here it is.
It’s a useful reminder that as a Lions Club, we were conscious that we were connected to the greater world of LCI (Lions Club International), and we shared in this philanthropic effort together. Apparently, LCI is the biggest volunteer philanthropic organisation in the world, as we were doubtless reminded back in the day when the Allendale Club was being organised.
How proud we were of our community, too, as Peter’s note emphasises. We’d helped to make the community sing, as it were, and as I recall Ann Potter mentioning, we never seemed to be too backwards about coming forward with our successes.
I suppose, as well, that the District Cabinet officers may have brought along a pennant, representing their own club, to add to our collection of interactions. That collection is probably languishing somewhere even now.
With so many images in Nigel Baynes’ archive folders, it’s been easy to amble through the years without looking too closely at the minutes. But the images for 2008 have dwindled, and succeeding years look to be getting just a little sparser, so it must be time to fall back on the regular monthly meetings to re-kindle those memories.
I remember chatting with Dave Stott at the Household Waste Recycling Centre, so it was great to welcome him as a prospective new member at our October 2008 meeting.
Correspondence and Grant Requests: At this meeting, we agreed to send £500 to the Morpeth Flood Appeal, as well as to support local groups Allen-Dale-Archers, the Haydon Bridge Christmas Trees Appeal, Awesome Productions for sound gear, and Pebbles Art and Music Event (MyLoop).
On Community Service, the report was effusive in thanks to Margaret Stonehouse (Steptoe) and Stephanie Atkinson (Prof Gloucester) for their unstinting help with the previous week’s Charity Auction, which raised some £3000 for good causes. Additionally, a Golden Oldies Summer Trip provided a good time for all who came. Glynn Galley had secured the Backworth Colliery Band for the first time to help out with our annual Carols in the Square, and plans were afoot for Bonfire Night.
More Fund-raising (Hilary Aldcroft suggested a more streamlined and higher revenue generating gambit on the Santa’s Sleigh twirls; the Book Stall under Prue Newman’s supervision will feature at the November Mini-Market in Allendale Village Hall) was discussed. Incidentally, this coming festive season would feature Graham Girvan as the Santa, an announcement that was apparently met with rapturous applause!
On the Fun & Games front, apparently there had been a Pub Walk to Blanchland in horrendous weather, but the walkers reported good spirits (and not only those in the destination!). A reprise of the Wasdale Weekend was mooted for summer of ’09, and the Kite Festival upcoming soon was hanging in the balance of the weather reports.
There had been a lot of Publicity about the Lions lately in the Courant, Pete Aldcroft reported, as well as in Spotlight, the regional Lions newsletter.
In Any Other Business, Larry (that’s me) mentioned the new Christmas Party scheme developed as a fund-raiser for the Village Hall, aimed at groups. I imagine the hope was that the Lions might consider holding their annual Christmas Dinner event and support the hall at the same time.
Prue’s conscientious attention to the Spectacle Receptacle and the glasses re-distribution scheme was applauded.
Finally, the question was raised: should we share our meetings around at the various venues that have a meeting room? We agreed that we enjoyed having a regular base for our monthly business confabs, but that others, as for example at the Crown in Catton to discuss the Carol Singing logistics, would ideally be held at other places.
I’m sorry I do not know who the Recording Secretary was for this month/year (does anyone recognise the minutes style?), but doubtless we drained the dregs of our glasses in a final toast to LCI.
While we waited for our special bottles and lids imprinted with the ‘Message in a Bottle’ scheme logos, all 6 cubic meters of them or 86 boxes, we were particularly intrigued with the enterprise of the Allendale Scouts group. The Scouts were eager to acquire the venue where they had been meeting, a building belonging to the Methodist church, for renovation to suit their purpose more conveniently.
The Methodists were also keen to sell the property and so the Scouts had been busy eliciting funds from every possible source. We Allendale Lions were keen to support them in their bid too, but we were seeking reassurance that if the bid failed, our donation would be returned to be used for another good cause. At the meeting of 4th April, 2005, Trevor conveyed assurances that such an eventuality would be assured.
Meanwhile, we pre-occupied ourselves with considerations of what other clubs in the country were doing: the national MD105 convention was to be held over the 1st of May weekend; Disclosure application forms were being circulated; Newcastle upon Tyne Lions Club’s 37th (and last) Charter Dinner was being held in Ponteland on 16th April; Lockerbie’s Charter Dinner is scheduled for mid-October; the Kellogg’s Great Walk, a four month collective effort, was seeking intrepid walkers and helpers for just after our May Fair; a new competition seeking to inspire inter-club visits is being launched; the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalger (‘Kiss me Hardy’) was coming up in October, and should we do something about this?
We hadn’t got anywhere with our request for funding for a permanent marquee for the fair, much to our discomfiture.
But perhaps we were most intrigued, at this business meeting, with Maggie Shearer’s idea for a Polish Midsummmer Event, to coincide with the biennial Handover Party: we could have a Maori barbecue and floating flowers to drift down the River East Allen! It all sounded very international in flavour, and we hoped the date could be over the weekend of the 17th and 18th June.
With a few more intriguing bits of Club business, notably our Trevor Newman’s acceptance of the role of Zone Chairman for the coming year, and our collective decision to store our paraphernalia (Charter and pennants) at the Golden Lion, now that the pub’s future was secure (after the Foot and Mouth epidemic of 2001, some financial incentives helped a small group of local farmers to acquire the pub), we did, formally, raise our glasses to toast Elsie Eye (LCI = Lions Clubs International), and the meeting was adjourned.