Members and visitors were welcomed back after the summer break. Special thanks were expressed to Gill Proops for leading a small group of members around Birmingham, and for our President’s day out to the Hop Pocket. Diary dates were given for our Christmas Dinner, 2017 Group Meeting and Quiz. The Annual Group Carol Service will be held at Wickhamford.

Dates were given for the skittles matches and members’ names were taken for future Group and County events.

Dr. Gillian White, on a return visit to our Institute, told us about the life of Bess of Hardwick and what an interesting and intriguing life she had! There were many children, the issue from her first three husbands, and, each time she married, it raised her to a higher social position, and on friendly terms with the Queen. Her last marriage was to the Earl of Shrewsbury and she used the ES initials on her great houses – Chatsworth, Hardwick – making her mark quite boldly. Chatsworth was rebuilt by her. She died in 1608 in her eighty first year with a few of her dynasty living today. Dr. White spoke with a good strong voice so everyone was able to hear and her slide show added to the occasion. She was warmly thanked by Lisa Seabourne.

Gillian and Carol were thanked for coffee duty and the winners of the competition, ‘something glassy’ was won by Pauline Bamber with Josie Witts and Nadine Woakes second and third.