‘WI Talk’ by Sheila Goldsworthy

Former CFWI Chairman and current Assistant Media Officer Sheila Goldsworthy writes a wonderful monthly WI column for The Cornishman. Here is Sheila’s October column:

With darker evenings approaching, thoughts turn to indoor activities and, bearing in mind we are an educational organization, we can focus on using what we have learnt during the lockdown.

Miss Amy Baker of Nancledra (centre), pictured here with her sisters, at age 18, nearly 50 years before she donated The Baker Cup to the Cornwall Federation of WIs.

Walking in unfamiliar areas has been one of the most enjoyable pastimes which can be recorded for future generations. The Baker Cup Competition for 2022 is entitled “Rediscovering Footpaths”. This is a biennial competition open to all WIs in Cornwall and its reputation goes before it as being one of the most prestigious competitions in the Federation. This Cup was given to the Federation in 1947 by Miss Amy Baker of Nancledra who was a former member of the then Education Sub-committee to be competed for by an essay competition. In 1951, she gave permission for the terms to be varied so that it could be used for co-operative competitions from time to time. That year it was given for the best Village Scrapbook on local history and local life which was won by St Just in Roseland WI. These books created tremendous interest and were exhibited in several venues, including Oxford, Denman College and at WI Council Meetings in England as well in many locations in Cornwall. Other compelling titles have followed down through the years, making this competition a very important social document. Today it provides an opportunity for a group of at least four members of a WI to enjoy exploring and preparing a report on the chosen subject, including maps illustrations, tables, etc., appropriate to the topic. Complete guidelines are available on the CFWI website.


Foods of England - Tunis CakeAnother indoor pastime at which WI members excel is ,of course, cooking. Members now have literally the chance to put the icing on the cake. “Design and Decorate a Tunis Cake for Christmas” at a cost of £15 to include all the materials other than the cake, is the title of a workshop to be held on Tuesday 23 November. Members may provide their own basic almond-flavoured cake or have one made for them at a modest cost. During the workshop, members will make chocolate ganache with Irish cream liqueur as a thick coat for the cake. They will create marzipan fruits as the decoration, and will finish their cakes with wrap and a ribbon on a silver board. What a mouth-watering workshop, plus a job completed and ticked off the list for Christmas!

Hall for Cornwall | Beach Retreats, CornwallExcitement is growing as at the time of going to press, because another event is back in the diary. Members are looking forward to the Annual Council Meeting at the newly refurbished Hall for Cornwall on 20 October. As the press has gone into overdrive with the Hall’s re-opening and descriptions of future events, we appreciate the information of its comprehensive calendar, full of variety and entertainment up to next April. We feel very pleased that we are one of the first organisations to use the Hall. Members will, however, be sad to learn that this will be the last Council Meeting for our Chairman, Margaret Johnson, after four years. She has certainly been the guiding light steering the Federation through choppy waters in unprecedented difficult times. Margaret’s kindly wisdom and friendliness have been a tonic for members and have given them confidence to resume their usual WI activities. We greatly appreciate Margaret’s commitment and service which has been key to the success of our federation. We look forward to seeing her at many future events.


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