“It’ll Never Last”: Mawnan WI Celebrates 100 Years

Members of Mawnan WI gathered at the Budock Vean Hotel to celebrate their 100th birthday.

When Mrs Granville Dunstan of Budock Vean Farm toured the parish to encourage local women to join the newly formed Women’s Institute, their menfolk allegedly scoffed “It’ll never last”.

One hundred years on, a thriving Mawnan WI (with 80 members) celebrated their centenary in the newly refurbished dining room of Mrs Dunstan’s old home – now the Budock Vean country house hotel on the Helford River, near Falmouth.

“It’s a fantastic story and we love the fact that our WI has gone from strength to strength over the last 100 years rather than dwindling away as the naysayers would have had it,” says newly elected President Gill Druce. “Those grumpy men couldn’t have been more wrong. Maybe they were worried about their wives getting too feisty and independent, but they needn’t have worried: WIs have been a huge force for community good – with fantastic food and cookery at their heart, all of which Mawnan WI fully endorses!”

CFWI Chairman Margaret Johnson cut the celebration cake at Mawnan WI’s 100th birthday lunch

Nearly a hundred members and guests returned to the spiritual home of their WI for a delectable three course lunch served in the Budock Vean’s beautiful restaurant. Among those celebrating 100 years of Mawnan WI at the Budock Vean was CFWI Chairman Margaret Johnson, WI Adviser Jane Mills, six of Mawnan’s past presidents and visiting presidents from nearby WIs – all of whom were wined, dined then entertained by Cornish star comedian Johnny Cowling.

They celebrated the inspiration, friendship and fun of belonging to their WI, as well as the opportunity to have an active role in community initiatives ranging from awareness-raising on climate change, health and well-being to Harvest Festivals and Christmas Fairs.

Fortunately, Mawnan’s WI members hold no grudges about the past, and enlightened menfolk of today were invited to join in the centenary celebrations too.

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Shortlanesend WI Members Get Knitting!

Members of Shortlanesend WI knitted 100 squares to celebrate 100 year of the WI in Cornwall. Well done!

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Pre-Loved Clothing Event in Zennor

Do you love clothes but hate waste? Join us in Zennor Village Hall on Thursday 27 February from 10.30am to 12.30pm for a coffee morning, and a sale of gorgeous pre-loved clothes.

The event is being organised by Zennor WI jointly with the Cornwall Climate Ambassadors, and all the proceeds will go to our CFWI climate campaign.

We hope to see you on Thursday!

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SeaGirls Learn about the High Cost of ‘Fast Fashion’

The St Minver SeaGirls WI’s February meeting saw a spotlight on ‘fast fashion’: too many clothes produced at too great a cost to the environment.

Kato of Wadebridge’s Syrup and SALT clothing outlined the issues caused by fast fashion, including child labour, landfill and the huge amount of water needed to produce clothes. Kato then went on to discuss what is truly sustainable, and recommended what we can do to help. She advised to avoid buying new, to mend and alter our existing clothes to give them a new lease of life, as well as buying pre-loved second-hand items to keep clothes out of landfill.

Look for natural fibres, classic cuts and solid shades which will work for a variety of looks and occasions, or go all out with bold statement pieces.

After Kato’s informative and fantastic contribution, the women browsed the racks of pre-loved clothes, shoes and accessories donated by members ahead of the meeting. Most people found a bargain or two. Anyone wishing to purchase items were asked to make donations in aid of the Cornwall Refuge Trust. To help everyone continue with the good work, members were treated to a small sewing kit, patch set or card to use for clothes repairs at home.

£110 was raised for the Trust, and the members expressed a huge thanks to everyone who donated their time, expertise and creative input to the evening.

The St Minver section of the Cornwall coast has been hit as hard as everyone else by plastic pollution washing up on the beaches after the recent storms, so the SeaGirls have organised a beach clean for Sunday 23 February. Everyone is welcome to the Quarry car park at Rock for a 9.30am start. The WI will provide bags and buckets from Surfers Against Sewage (SAS), but please bring your own gloves if you wish. Stay as long as you like – all that is needed is enthusiasm!

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A Lily for Outgoing Hessenford President

Hessenford WI thanked retiring President Jackie Holland for all she has done for them during the past two years, and Vice President Marie Bersey presented her with a beautiful calla lily.

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100 Bunches of Daffs!

Mawnan WI is kicking off its centenary year!

Over the next few weeks, 100 bunches of daffodils will be given to local residents, neighbours and those who need a bit of cheer.

The first bunches were handed out to the team doing front-of-house at the village pantomime.

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CFWI Speakers’ Directory

We recently received a question about our Speakers’ Directory that came to us via the website Suggestion Box. Please please note that as Suggestion Box comments are anonymous, we cannot respond to members’ questions that are sent to us this way. If you would like a response, please either email us or ring the office.

This particular member wanted to know whether we could publish the Directory in a smaller format for printing (to save paper) for those members who do not use the internet. 

Did you know that you can print a document any size you like? You can easily print two pages per sheet of paper! Or go even smaller if you’d like! 

If you use Acrobat Reader (as many do), you can find simple step-by-step instructions here.

If you use a different pdf reader, the instructions will be slightly different – but a quick online search will give you the answer you’re looking for.

This member also asked us if we could publish a list of additions and deletions to the Speakers’ Directory each year so that it wouldn’t be necessary to re-print the entire document. However, the Directory isn’t updated annually. It changes constantly throughout the year, so we’re afraid this isn’t possible. However, all new speakers added to the Directory are marked with a big yellow star!

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A Birthday Meal for Harrowbarrow & Metherell WI

Harrowbarrow & Metherell WI celebrated their 55th birthday in January.

Pictured here is Harrowbarrow & Metherell President Joan Tall giving the welcome speech.

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Truro WI’s Green Heart Competition

Truro WI President Rosemary Williams presented a green heart fused glass bowl to Caroline Stone as the first prize in Truro’s Green Heart Crafts competition.

Caroline’s winning entry was a bag and a soap holder, both decorated with green hearts.

What a wonderful idea for a competition!

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The NFWI Public Affairs Digest

Have you signed up yet to receive the NFWI Public Affairs Digest? Why not give it a try?

There’s loads of interesting information available to us about the latest WI campaign news. You can have the NFWI Public Affairs Digest delivered directly to your inbox every month!

If you’re interested in our WI campaigns, just go to the campaigns area of the NFWI website and sign up to receive the Public Affairs Digest. It’s very good and is bang up to date. It’s full of ideas and help for you personally, and your WI, to easily get involved with the national campaigns that interest you.

The Digest also gives news about what other Federations are doing, opportunities for you to publicise your WI’s campaign work, and it tells you all the latest news about the work of the NFWI public affairs team.

This month, for example, the Digest is full of ideas on how to get involved in campaigns:

  • The Climate Coalition is offering to help us advertise our Show the Love events and the Digest tells us how.
  • We are all invited to take part in the Climate Coalition Show the Love film.
  • Ann Jones, NFWI Vice-Chair and Chair of the NFWI Public Affairs Committee, is playing an important part in setting up the first Climate Assembly Panel to advise government on what it should be doing.
  • There’s an nvitation to take part in the Million Women Rise march on 7th March.
  • Theres a blog, film and action pack about 5 Minutes that Matter (Cervical screening saves lives)
  • There’s up-to-date information about Food Matters (Tesco gets rid of plastic packing on multi-packs)
  • There’s an invitation to send in info on your own experience of local bus services (for the new Better on Board campaign)
  • There’s an invitation to send in your thoughts about why it’s so important to talk about mental health (Make Time for Mental Health campaign).
  • The Digest asks all members to get involved with International Women’s Day (8th March) by posting on social media
  • In ‘Campaigns Corner’, you’ll have an opportunity to email in your WI’s campaign news.

If you’d like to give it a go, just click here, enter your email address and you’re off! As simple as that. You don’t need to be an IT wizard!

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