There has never been a better time to welcome new members to the club.
With the hope that the Covid Pandemic is beginning to be managed, if not entirely beaten yet of course, now is a great time to welcome new members to the club as we start to get back into the outside world and hopefully return to something a bit more like normal. There is much that Bournemouth North has been doing even in these difficult times although resources have been stretched as has been the case with so many of the Charities that we like to support. The club’s record of supporting good causes in our community over the past 50 years is one to be proud of and so we can’t wait to get things moving again.
So, the great news is that in recent months our Club has welcomed 4 new members. In July 2021 President John preforming one of the first duties of his new year in the hot seat welcomed Tricia Hancox to the fold and then in November 2021 he welcomed Harley Davison Rider / Petanque player and former Insurance expert Robert (Rob) Coniman.
This was soon followed on December with the addition of Bron Lister-Smith and Ernie Pooley. Both Bron and Ernie were former Members of Westcliffe-on-Sea Rotary Club in Essex where they both served as Club President.
We are delighted that they have all joined Rotary and hope that they have many years of being a part of this great community.
On 15th July a very brave Rotarian, namely Steve Maidment (a member of the Rotary Club of Bournemouth North) took to the skies. Yes, he went up in an aeroplane like most people do but unlike most people he didn’t come back in the plane. No, when it got up to 10,000 ft. strapped to a complete stranger they jumped and the only way was down.
This is Steve’s Story –
Having had 2 previous dates cancelled due to bad weather Jill and I arrived 0745 hours on Thursday the 15th – hopefully 3rd time lucky.. I was booked onto the fourth string jump team, three gone…we’re next at 1100 hours. Enter heavy cloud. Jump postponed.
Finally got to jump with seven others at about 1400 hours. Little bit nervous when it was announced and more nervous still when boarding the small aircraft.
Packed in like sardines, I worried about getting leg cramp, or heart twinges, or claustrophobia, or unconsciousness, or cowardice or any other embarrassing ailment. This was due to there being not an inch to spare amidst the eight jumpers and eight instructors, average age about 21. God, I felt old. Where’s Stan when you need him?
Even more nervous on take-off, screaming engine and loud rattles, fuselage shaking and through open door saw the ground disappearing into the distance. What am I doing here?
Onwards through the clouds and ever upwards. Cringingly nervous by this time but trying to appear stoical and in command of my fears as I sat strapped to my instructor. My jump was third in line.
“Move across to the door now Steve” said the reassuring voice in my ear. So I slid across and sat on the floor at the door, legs hanging out, head back but daring to peep down – once. Wished I hadn’t.
There followed the most terrifying ten seconds of my life as I was thrust tumbling into the strong winds of the open sky, peeping down through breaks in the clouds at the earth which by this time was about 140 miles away. OK two miles, but it was traumatic, frightening and exhilarating all at the same time. I did, however, at some point somehow manage to pose with a forced V sign, a thumbs up and an unconvincing smile for the hand-held camera.
For a full thirty seconds we were in free-fall. “Nothing quite like it is there Steve?” a voice shouted in my ear as without notice, the main parachute was activated and I immediately shot back up about half a mile. “No, awesome” I replied. He was right, there is nothing quite like it.
Then came the swirling gyrations. It was quite surreal, hanging there by a few straps, probably made in China, looking down between my feet from this great height onto the distant fields and buildings now clearly visible, but oh so far away. Strangely, as we swept down, I was conjuring up odd words every now and then to convey to Brad, my excellent and reassuring instructor, that I was in control of my fear.
As we broke through the final clouds, we swung sharply first one way then the other to lose height more quickly. It was like being at the loose end of a kite’s tail. I thought I was going to throw up but the descent ended with a dramatically steep, sweeping, stomach-wrenching figure of eight as we landed softly and safely on terra firma.
The GoSkydive company is excellent. The staff were very professional, reassuring and friendly and I would recommend them to anyone. Jumping from that plane was quite the most terrifying, life-questioning, inspiring and wonderful thing I have ever done. I wouldn’t have missed it……now.
I am so pleased to have completed the appeal. At the last count it has raised a total of £3599.71 (or £4342.14 including Gift Aid) for two great local charities, the Dorset Children’s Foundation and the My Time Young Carers charity. I wish them well.
I would like to thank all of you who donated so generously to this appeal and for your support over the past few months. It is very much appreciated by the charities, and by me.
This week saw another 3/2 win for Bournemouth North! As with the England football Bournemouth North reaped the benefits of playing on home ground, this time against Chris Chubb’s Muscliffe Maniacs.
Malcolm, Graham and John won a closely fought triples game 13/11 against a very strong Muscliffe team, whilst Anne, Mike E and Steve were defeated 13/8 in an impressive performance by the second Maniac’s triples team.
The three doubles games resulted in a 13/0 win to John S and Steve, a 13/8 defeat by Gabriel and Graham despite a strong fight-back in the later stages, and an exhilarating deciding 13/4 win by Malcolm and Graham, who played magnificently throughout the lengthy third doubles game to clinch the match.
The final score – BNRC 3, Muscliffe Maniacs 2.
Once again it was a feature of the evening that the games were played in a very competitive but friendly and sporting manner, whilst a warm and welcome sun shone down on us all.
Let’s see if we can repeat these home wins when we start playing away matches next week against Flights Falcons.
Tuesday (22nd June) our members met face-to-face for the first and last time in the 2020/21 Rotary Year.
Handover and Club Assembly, which marks the end of each Rotary year, was held in the garden of our new Club President – Rotarian John Slade. Socially distanced and following the guidelines that we have all come to live by, it was time for President Roger to hand over the Chain of Office to John and to wish him and his new team the very best of luck for the coming year.
No one foresaw the year that Roger and the members were going to have to contend with. In that time all meetings have been held on Zoom, including Council and Trustee meetings and whist there have been many restrictions on what we were able to do we have all come through with a great deal of credit. Attendances on line have been excellent and we have had many very good speakers to keep the interest going.
Roger was determined that he would chair at least one face-to-face meeting during his year and finally managed that on the last day. He thanked all of the Officers and members of the Club for their support during the past 12 months and believed that we have done well to come through generally unscathed and ready for the new challenges ahead.
The meeting was very well attended and both John and Roger hope that this bodes well for the future of the Club.
The New Forrest Petanque League got underway this week, albeit a little late and in a slightly revised format after a break of nearly 2 years. But never mind – it was good to see a little bit of normal and to be able to see people face-to-face again.
On a warm sunny evening Bournemouth North Rotary welcomed this week’s visitors to Merley from the Redlynch Petanque Club.
The BNRC team included Steve Maidment (C), John Spurgeon, Anne Green, Graham Green, Gabriel Shead, Mike Edwards and Malcolm Jefferies
The two triple games finished all even with one game won by each side. Then it was on to the three pairs games which BNRC managed to win 2-1 which meant a 3-2 win on the night.
BNRC Captain Steve Maidment said that “it was good to see old friends and adversaries after such a prolonged period and the result was somewhat incidental to the friendly and thoroughly enjoyable atmosphere on the night and whilst we managed to win the game, the banter was a draw”.
BNRC are now looking forward to the next match on Thursday 1st July when they will welcome Muscliffe Maniacs to Merley.
Maintaining Covid Rules and additional specific precautions agreed be the League Management Committee, it is hoped that a full schedule of matches can be completed by the end of September or early October by the 16 teams that have entered.
17 Households took part in the Easter On-line Quiz which was
hosted by Rotarian Sonia Hall at the end of March.
There were no prizes, simply the satisfaction of taking part
and helping to raise money for the Clubs Charity Fund to enable us to support
local charities and other organisations who are struggling during the covid-19 pandemic.
Participants were challenged by a host of questions on
various subjects, some fairly easy, some quite hard and some that would have
had you searching on Google had it been allowed – as if anyone would have done
such a thing! Of course not.
Everyone agreed that it was a lot of fun and a tidy sum was
raised for good causes which was what it was all about.
At the end of the evening President Roger thanked Sonia for
all her hard work in preparing the quiz and on behalf of all the members wished
her the very best of luck as this she was to be her last meeting with Bournemouth
North as she has now transferred to the Rotary Club of Redruth in glorious
Cornwall following her recent move to that part of the world.
Despite the problems caused by the Coved 19 Virus, which like many other charities has prevented the members of the Rotary Club of Bournemouth North being able to organise and run the traditional fundraising events, such as the Kinson May Day Fete, through their own resources they have managed to fund a number of traditional donations to assist local causes. For some years the club have donated in cash and in kind to the charity “Homestart” based in Wimborne Road Kinson. This is the local branch of the national charity which assists young mothers in various ways and which is very much appreciated by those who benefit from the practical help and advice given.
This week (Dec 2020) the Rotary Club have given 92 Christmas boxes of biscuits purchased from the local store Tesco which will be distributed together with other goodies to the young mothers and children served by Homestart.
Also this week (Dec 2020) the Rotary Club of Bournemouth North have donated a number of gift bags for distribution to the young mothers and their infants supported by the Bournemouth Young Parents Support Group. The club have supported this cause annually for some years at Christmas and the beneficiaries are very appreciative the treats given.
The third donation of gifts by the club in December was to the Bournemouth Women’s Refuge which was extremely well received at this special time of year. The refuge is under increasing pressure at the moment due to so many changes in our lives that are affecting all of us for various reasons. Each parcel contains Xmas goodies and gifts for each lady.
In October The Rotary Club of Bournemouth North welcomed Rotarians
Tom and Susan Zisk from the Rotary Club of the Gulf Beaches in Florida, USA.
By the wonders of modern technology Tom and Susan were able
to join our meeting using Zoom and although 4,500 miles away it was just as
though they were here in Britain, apart from the sunshine that we could see
through their window and the fact that they were enjoying a very pleasant 89˚F. A
little different to the UK at the end of October.
Tom and Susan were invited to join as Guest Speakers at our
fellowship meeting by Rotarian John Spurgeon. John and his wife Robbie first
met Tom and Susan when travelling in the US in 2016 and decided to try to visit
a Rotary Club along the way. Tom was President of the Gulf Beaches Club at the
time and he and Susan made them so welcome that they have remained friend and
kept in contact ever since.
Tom and Susan talked about life in the Sunshine State during
the current Covid Crisis and how they are adapting to living with the pandemic.
They also spoke about the work that Rotary is doing in the Community at the
present time and gave a little insight into how Rotary clubs in the area are
structured and provide help where needed.
This was an excellent opportunity to make contact with a
Rotary Club in another country and to learn from each other how we can all work
together to make the world a better place.
Tom and Susan fielded a number of questions from our members
during and after their talk and a Vote of Thanks was proposed by Rotarian David
A fine sunny day, the wonderfully generous public and the usual determination of the Rotary Club of Bournemouth North all helped to raise over £700 for Macmillan Caring Locally, who are based in Christchurch.
Due to the Corona Virus Epidemic so many of the Annual Macmillan
Coffee Mornings fell by the wayside this year and so not to be beaten President
Roger suggested that we set up on a site available to him along the promenade
at Branksome, offering free tea or coffee to people enjoying a walk in the sun
and inviting them to make a voluntary donation to Macmillan Caring Locally in
The generosity of the public proved to be amazing as so many
have had reason to be grateful for the work that Macmillan have done over the
years and hopefully will continue to do in the future. We never know what is
around the corner.
Over 100 free cups of coffee and tea were served but that
only tells a part of the story as many passers by gave generous donations
without availing themselves of our refreshments.
A representative of Macmillan Caring Locally joined us for
the day with collection buckets and banners which helped to draw people in.
After a very rewarding day President Roger thanked all the helpers, John & Robbie, Perry & Ruth, Stan & Dorothy, Chris and Karen and Steve. Roger also thanked all those Rotarians who donated the ingredients and lent the equipment which went to make the day such a great success.