14th Nov | Coach Trip: Ely Cathedral Christmas Gift & Food Fair

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Now in its eighth year, this popular event is widely acknowledged as one of East Anglia’s exceptional Christmas shopping experiences. Over 120 trade stalls are located in the Cathedral’s magnificent nave, its famous Lady Chapel and a heated marquee in the beautiful Cathedral grounds. This popular event, inside one of Cambridgeshire’s most iconic venues, makes Ely Cathedral Christmas Gift & Food Fair a perfect day out.

And so it was for Capel Ladies Club. Undaunted by the wet weather (as everything was under cover) a coachful of members spent an enjoyable day visiting all the stalls, Christmas shopping and sampling some of the goodies on offer! There were Christmas bits, jewellery and clothing, and a food hall where amongst other things there was gin and cider tasting!

Everyone enjoyed themselves and it was a grand day out, well-organised by deputy Chairlady Linda Evans.

Thanks to Sue Maynard for the photos below.

7th Nov | The Blossom Appeal

1d2889e3-5328-4cc3-af40-4fe10a699902The main charity we are supporting this year is The Blossom Appeal, and at our November meeting the fund’s Community and Events Manager, Brian Taylor, came to update us on the progress of this worthwhile project.

The aim is for every breast care patient to have the best possible experience whether they go to the hospital for mammograms, biopsies or cancer treatment, etc. To this end they are planning to build a £2.5 million modern Breast Care Centre where state-of-the-art care can be delivered to all patients under one roof.

Brian brought with him a lady who has recently been through breast cancer treatment at Ipswich Hospital. She is now clear of the disease and volunteers for the charity as a way of showing her gratitude. One of our members is also a recovered breast cancer sufferer, and she remarked that, when she was undergoing treatment, she did indeed have to visit several different sites for each part of it, which was at times arduous and sometimes inconvenient.

To date, just under half a million pounds has been raised, and although there is still a long way to go, the Blossom Appeal Team are determined to meet their target at some point in the not-too-distant future!

Fund-raising is the mainstay of this project, and basically anything that can make money is being encouraged by the charity team, such as sponsored walks and bike-rides, coffee mornings, garage sales, car boot sales, quizzes, jumble sales – you name it, every little helps!

To donate to this worthy cause simply log on to the Blossom Appeal website to see the different ways in which you can contribute.

17th Oct | Afternoon Tea at Oranges & Lemons

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Capel Ladies Club had an Afternoon Tea date in mid-October at the Oranges & Lemons Craft Centre and Tea Rooms in East Bergholt. A group of sixteen ladies sampled the delicious spread of home-made sandwiches, cakes and desserts prepared by the very bubbly Idoia Garcia and her staff. There was a happy atmosphere and everyone enjoyed the great variety of food set out on cake stands along the tables. Afterwards there was the chance to browse the gifts and crafts, and several ladies bought something before they left. A very naughty but nice way to spend an autumn afternoon!

Thanks to Sue Crane, Barbara Randall & Chris McCausland for the photos.

3rd Oct | Style Analysis – Helen Garth

20191003_193951Knowing that Helen Garth, an Image Consultant and Hypnotherapist, was coming to speak to Capel Ladies Club on Colour and Style meant that many of us had been slightly more selective than usual about what to wear for the evening! Mind you, we are a fairly personable crowd in any case, so we were interested to hear what new hints Helen might give us in her talk!

Helen began by passing round laminated sheets of a range of different styles as worn by women of all ages and body shapes, to illustrate the various possible ways that outfits can draw attention to our best features and distract from what we think of as our worst. The range of different styles went from City Chic and Dramatic to Creative, Romantic, Classsic and Natural.

Whichever style you choose, it’s all about creating a BALANCED appearance, and it’s important to know which body shape you are to help you dress stylishly. We had to pair up with someone else and, using a small weight on the end of a piece of thread we held the end of the thread to each other’s shoulders allowing the weight to hang free. We could then tell whether we were a triangle-shape, an inverted triangle shape, a pear shape, a circular shape, an hour-glass, an oval or a rectangle, and from that diagnosis we could be advised on which of our features needed accentuating with the style of our clothes.

This proved to be a fun evening, and although we took Helen’s hints and tips seriously everyone enjoyed a bit of a giggle, and there was a good atmosphere. One item of clothing which seemed to display the most versatility was the scarf. Helen showed several ways of wearing scarves, and various knots to tie in order to create some completely different looks with an outfit. She also said that many of her clothes come from charity shops which are full of surprises! All in all it was a very enjoyable evening!

For more information about Helen, see her Facebook page under “Helen Garth – Looking good, Feeling good”.

5th Sept | Morris Men – a talk by Mike Garland

Mike Garland talkingI had always believed that Morris Men were part of ancient British traditions, and that the costumes, music and dances associated with them were full of mystic symbolism and folklore.

Although some of this is true, much of it is not – and it was down to Mike Garland, ex-Squire of East Anglian Morris Ring and our speaker on the subject for September, to clear up some of these misnomers.

The oldest known records of Morris Dancing date from the 15th century and are associated with East Anglia. Caister in Norfolk has a medieval tapestry showing Morris Dancers, and there are cups from Bury St Edmunds with Morris Dancers on. At the Royal courts in Tudor times Morris dancing was enjoyed and performed, and Queen Elizabeth I even joined in energetic dances of this kind! Churches allowed Morris Dancing, and Craftsmen’s Guilds used it in their ceremonial processions. Even agricultural labourers performed dances in their villages, and sometimes for the local lord at the manor house, in order to boost their own wages by passing the hat round at the end!

Other known records of this style of dance come from the European courts of the fifteenth century when “moreys daunce” was a regular court entertainment. This may have been the dance form known as “morisco” on the continent, and it is easy to see how the name was changed over the years to what we now call “Morris Dancing”.

Mike Garland dancingOver the years and down to the nineteenth century, English Morris Dancing had all but died out, but the Victorian revival of folk songs, traditions and stories also included a new interest in it, and concerts were held in which both boys and girls performed dances which had been collected from researchers travelling the country to discover them. The many kinds of Morris Dancing countrywide included different costumes, different footwear (such as clogs), and using sticks, swords or handkerchiefs to show off the various moves and emphasize the rhythm of the music. Musicians played on the fiddle, the tambour, a three-hole pipe or an accordion.

Mike Garland’s talk not only told us about the origins of Morris, he actually performed one or two dances for us, including a very lively jig using handkerchiefs! It certainly proved that the dancers have to be fit! He was accompanied by his fellow Morris member Mick on the melodeon accordion.

Essentially, people enjoyed both taking part as well as watching these folk dances, and it was all in the name of FUN! No mystic connections or symbolic meanings – just simple fun and enjoyment that everyone, young or old, could appreciate! And that’s it – so why not find out where you can see Morris Men performing somewhere and go along to watch! For more info check this website:  www.eastsuffolkmorris.com

1st August | BBQ at The King’s Head, Stutton

IMG-20190802-WA0008We held our Summer BBQ at The King’s Head, Stutton, where we couldn’t have been made more welcome! There were only a few of us, but just the right number to fit into one of the summerhouses in the pub’s garden. It was a delightful setting, with coloured lights decorating the garden, and the barbecue foods and multiple side dishes were a feast to behold! Service was excellent, we simply stayed put and the food was brought out to us. The only downside was that there were such generous servings we couldn’t finish everything! We’ll definitely be back on another occasion! Thank you to all the staff for their warm welcome and delicious food!

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20th July | Capel Fun Day

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Fun Day (re-arranged) turned out bright and breezy with an odd shower or two – but by and large it was a sunny afternoon. Capel Ladies’ Stall, entitled “Home-made & Home-grown” and selling plants, cakes and jams, as well as paperbacks and pre-loved jewellery, made a grand profit of £236.94 towards club funds.  This included Linda Evans’ ‘Planted Tub Raffle’, which made £108.00, the previous sale of plants (which were meant for the postponed Fun Day) by Sue Maynard, which raised £26.40, and the stall itself on the day raised £102.54!

Thanks to everyone who helped towards it!