Posted on 29 April, 2016Comments (0)

Hampshire Federation of Womens Institutes

Hampshire Federation of Womens Institutes

An Open Meeting held at 7.30pm on Thursday 7th April 2016 at The Royal British Legion Hall, Herriard.

The evening’s speaker – Jake Simpkin, his topic “Southampton Passenger Ships & The Docks.”

We celebrate the 70th anniversary of Herriard & Lasham W.I this year so decided to mark the occasion with a cake and light buffet supper, with guests from several of our neighbouring W.I.s and those of our friends joining us for this special open meeting. The hall soon filled with guests busy buying raffle tickets, greeting each other and finding their seats. After the usual ‘business’ side of the meeting was dispensed with, we welcomed Jake Simpkin and settled down to hear his very interesting and entertaining talk.

Southhampton has grown in the last 180 years from a small sailing port enclosed in it’s medieval walls to the thriving city and port we know today. The coming of steam allowed the first scheduled service across the channel in the 1820s, and the arrival of the railways in the 1840s made imports and exports more efficient and it easier for travellers to reach the docks. Over the years the shoreline has been extensively reclaimed allowing the ocean going liners to relocate from Liverpool – the Cunard and Whitestar lines with their majestic and opulent ships bringing the glamour of America and Hollywood stars to our shores, and doing ‘their bit’ in the two wars as troopships.

Today Southampton is the biggest cruise ship port in the world and also the largest port for the vehicle import/export trade in Britain. During the summer months it’s four vast terminals are always full. Mr Simpkin’s knowledge of the ships and the port and his wonderful slides of the famous Liners that graced the waters of Southampton from the 1900s to present day kept us enthralled and the evening sped by.

We finished our meeting with a tempting array of refreshments and celebrated our anniversary with two delicious cakes, baked by Bentworth member Rosemarie Bradley and decorated with the WI logo and birthday wishes (70yrs) by our President, Sylvia Vine. Thank you to all the guests who joined us and Mr Simpkin for his talk and to all our members, without their extra efforts this special evening would not have been such a success.

We will be holding our AGM & Resolutions meeting at 7.30pm on the 5th of May 2016. This will be held at Meadow View Cottage, Lasham by kind invitation of Ruth Martin.

Jean Spottiswoode Clark

[Please note that this message is not posted on behalf of Bentworth Parish Council and does not necessarily reflect the Parish Council’s policy]

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