‘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 February column:

Members now have a brand new brighter, larger monthly newsletter to learn of all the springtime events in greater and more colourful detail as well as plenty of adverts to tempt them. The picture of chocolate certainly jumps off the page to all of us that love that occasional little treat. There is to be a CFWI chocolate event on 31 March at Chy Noweth from 12.30-3.30pm. Following a light lunch there is to be chocolate tasting. What a wonderful way to celebrate the end of winter and the start of our Cornish spring.

Also on the gastronomic topic, members will be delighted to learn that the immensely popular “What’s in my Trolley for Spring?” cookery demonstrations are on the agenda again. The first is on Tuesday 18 April at Coads Green Village Hall at 7pm and the second at Carnon Downs Village Hall on4 May at 2pm. These events are always very special with Alison concentrating on producing traditional dishes using seasonal ingredients and Pat cooking items that are less familiar. There will also be tastings, refreshments, recipe sheets and a raffle. A thoroughly “jam” packed event full of interest and entertainment.

This event is organised by the Cookery and Crafts Sub-Committee which is also organising an event called “Introduction to Free Machine Stitching” on 10 May from 10am-3.30pm at Chy Noweth. The committee has been asked for a beginners’ workshop on how to tackle free machine embroidery and free machine quilting. This is a marvellous chance to learn what is often thought to be tricky craft with experts on hand to guide you. You will need to bring a sewing machine which has the capacity to lower or cover feed dogs/feed teeth plus a free machining embroidery foot, as well as a selection of cotton and polyester threads, and most importantly a packed lunch! Cost is £15 plus a small charge on the day for materials which will be provided. For further details of this very innovative craft, contact Pat Mallett.

One very important date in the WI calendar is the NFWI Annual Meeting, this year being held at Cardiff on Thursday 25 May which includes the resolution which will be debated and voted on. Resolution information sessions are deemed important for delegates attending the meeting as well as any members with an interest in hearing which resolution has been chosen. This year, Resolution Roadshow will be held at Millennium House in Pensilva at 7pm on Wednesday 26 April, Connor Downs WI Hall at 10am on Thursday 27 April and at Chy Noweth at 10am on Friday 28 April. Your WI Secretary has the application form. Many resolutions in the past have brought publicity and change for the better due to the WI’s foresight and persistence. Some of us remember the very public and lively debate on mixed hospital wards in 1979, with particular emphasis on the old “Nightingale” wards. Very strong opinions were aired.

This subject leads nicely into the renowned Blaikley Salver Competition, this year entitled “Celebrating Difference”. These are times of great change relevant to so many aspects of our lives, and it is hoped WI members will feel inspired to explore the many facets of this subject. The poem can be any length up to 32 lines, handwritten or typed with double-spacing. Two copies must be submitted with your name and WI on one copy only. Entry should be sent with payment of £5 payable to CFWI and a SAE to Chy Noweth. Closing date is 3 July. The Salver will be presented at the Annual Council Meeting at the Hall for Cornwall in October. This competition reveals the flair and literary talent of WI members choosing such diverse subjects, for example Sheila Higgins of Penpol and Point WI won the competition in 2011 with her poem on “Unitary Cornwall”.

Photo Credit: Coffee Geek

Here is another event to write in your red WI diary: The County Chair is holding the annual Coffee Morning at the Marazion Community Centre on Friday 5 May, from 10am-12 noon, where you will be able to purchase a wide range of goodies. The cost of our marquee at the Royal Cornwall Show continues to increase, so funds are always needed to help pay for this, which has historically served as a shop window on our organization, where we not only serve the best teas and coffee on the Showground but visitors to the show can see for themselves what a diverse, talented and educational WI organisation we have in Cornwall.

A reminder that Fairtrade fortnight is 27 February-12 March. Simply by picking up Fairtrade products when you can, you are a vital part of a Fairtrade community and our joint efforts will help build a fairer future for our favourite foods.

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