Club report – Thursday 28 February (Doug Weale)

Margaret Jones chaired the meeting, which, as always, exemplified the objective pursued, namely to practice and improve the art of speaking in public.

Ron Sheldrake began the meeting with a tribute to our late (former) member John Harvey.  Ron recalled John’s presentation of an autographed book ”Wit and Wisdom”, which will be treasured in our Club Library.

In the Business Session, President Bernie Morgan drew our attention to the Open Evening on Thursday, March 14th, to be held at our usual venue, The Royal Temple Yacht Club.  This is planned for visitors, who will, we are sure, enjoy a demonstration of what we have to offer in our constant quest for excellence in the art of speaking.

Then followed two speeches by Ron Sheldrake and Bernie Morgan, respectively.  In compliance with the Advanced Manual, these were composed with ten minutes preparation (in each case), without any earlier knowledge of the subjects.  Such assignments are a great challenge to members as they progress and a huge source of satisfaction to accomplish.  In turn, Kathleen Smith and Trevor Kenning gave their constructive appraisals.  Attention was drawn by both to the many points of good speech presentation, together with improvements that could be made.  This evaluation (as it is known) is the centre of our learning curve.  We have no professional teachers but the consensus of opinion of fellow members is highly valued.

Garry Costain chaired our following general-impromptu-speaking “Topics” session. In this, members are each invited to speak for up to two minutes, on a previously unknown subject.  This is practiced at every meeting and is a most enjoyable and satisfying exercise.

An evaluation by Ben Harris applauded the topics on offer and equally engaging responses.  Kathleen Smith was awarded the trophy for best effort, imposing her own style to earn the popular vote.  Finally, Andrew Thomson summed up a successful meeting conducted with fine chairmanship.

A cordial invitation to attend our Open Evening on March 14th (Thursday) is now extended to you all.  This is an invitation to observe, sit and listen, or even – if you wish – to take part.  We will meet from 7.30pm for  For more details, please contact:

Doug Weale (01843) 592221