OUR meeting started with WI business including a report from Pauline Bamber who went, as our representative, to the Buckingham Palace Garden Party held in honour of the WI Centenary celebrations.

Eight thousand people attended including the Duchess of Cornwall and a fantastic day was had by all.

A group of us visited the RSC for a guided tour on Behind the Scenes. It was a very enjoyable afternoon giving us insight as to what goes on backstage.

Our entertaining speaker this month was Jane Arnold, accompanied by her helper Mrs Thompson, giving us a taste of the Second World War. Tables were laid out with artefacts, such as clothing and foodstuffs, which had been grown at home and combined and cooked to make a meal. Ration coupons, which were very sparse, were needed to buy most things. We sampled carrot cookies, mock banana sandwiches made with parsnip and mock duck, which we were not so keen on. Jane even demonstrated a mock wedding cake made out of cardboard, but iced to look authentic.

We were astounded at what could be made palatable out of so little basic food. Also clothing was cleverly adapted for everyday wear. The talk finished with a vote of thanks for such an informative and enjoyable presentation.

Our memorable evening ended with refreshments and cake made especially by our President, Pat Moss, to commemorate 100 years of the WI.