Stop Press: CLC meetings restart dates!

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As I write, some late CLC news has come to my attention!

At a recent committee meeting, it was agreed to co-opt some new members onto the existing committee, and an EXTRA meeting is being held on 9th September to do this, and to discuss the way forward for the club.

Meanwhile, obvious restrictions still prevent us from holding our first CLC autumn meeting in the Library. To compensate for this, an afternoon tea is being planned (hopefully!) for Thursday 3rd September at the Bluebell Café in the By-Pass Nurseries!

Why not join us for tea and scones? All members and prospective members welcome!

– Sue Woolgar

September update – a poem

We might not be big – in fact we’re quite small

But nevertheless we’re the best club of all!

We need some new members

To carry us on,

We hope that you’ll join us

Before we are gone.

There’s speakers and outings

And barbecues too

And visits to pantos

And craft things to do!

We’re older than some

But we’re still young at heart

And we’d love some new blood

To give things a fresh start!

Please don’t be put off

Come and give it a go –

Until you have tried it

You’ll just never know!

SEE YOU THERE?

– Sue Woolgar

Capel Ladies Club – August update

At the time of writing this article I am not sure when Capel Ladies Club will next be able to meet. It would be great to think it could be September, but who knows?

So – just in case we are actually able to enjoy our full Autumn Programme, I thought I would give details of what to expect, both as a reminder for current members and as useful information for potential ones.

Our autumn in-meetings include a visit from Wiltshire Foods, a talk on the Silk Road from China to Essex, tales of Suffolk Ghosts and Hauntings and a Christmas Social with Buffet supper in the Vine Lounge.

Our planned trips range from an outing to a local vineyard and one to the Hotter shoe shop in Ipswich. Nearer to Christmas there is a shopping trip by coach arranged jointly with the W.I., and of course our club’s Christmas meal out to a pub or restaurant. (Can you remember what that’s like???)

I do hope that at least some of these things appeal to many of you, and that they might just tempt you to come along to a meeting on the first Thursday in the month, at 7.45pm in Capel Library, where you will find a friendly crowd and an interesting speaker to pep up your evening.

For more information please see locally distributed posters or browse this website.

Do give it a whirl – you never know, you might even enjoy it! And you’ll certainly learn something – and also make some new friends!

Sue Woolgar


Cup Cakes 2 PhotoP.S. Our members each received another nice surprise from the Capel Ladies Committee last week – a presentation box with a pretty gift tag containing two delectable cupcakes! Mmmm! We can’t guarantee that this will be happening EVERY month, but it’s a lovely lockdown treat! Thank you again CLC Committee!

A lockdown poem by Jan Beaumont

Once again, I have no Capel Ladies Club activities to report on, but recently this poem was doing the rounds on the internet, and as it made me smile I thought it was worth including it here! So – for all CLC members, past, present AND future, and for non-members of a certain age – here is this lockdown poem composed by Jan Beaumont. Enjoy! And let’s hope we’ll be back at CLC soon!

Sue Woolgar


I’m normally a social girl

I love to meet my mates

But lately with the virus here

We can’t go out the gates.

You see, we are the ‘oldies’ now

We need to stay inside

If they haven’t seen us for a while

They’ll think we’ve upped and died.

They’ll never know the things we did

Before we got this old

There wasn’t any Facebook

So not everything was told.

We may seem sweet old ladies

Who would never be uncouth

But we grew up in the 60s –

If you only knew the truth!

There was sex and drugs and rock ‘n roll

The pill and miniskirts

We smoked, we drank, we partied

And were quite outrageous flirts.

Then we settled down, got married

And turned into someone’s mum,

Somebody’s wife, then nana,

Who on earth did we become?

We didn’t mind the change of pace

Because our lives were full

But to bury us before we’re dead

Is like a red rag to a bull!

So here you find me stuck inside

For 4 weeks, maybe more

I finally found myself again

Then I had to close the door!

It didn’t really bother me

I’d while away the hour

I’d bake for all the family

But I’ve got no flaming flour!

Now Netflix is just wonderful

I like a gutsy thriller

I’m swooning over Idris

Or some random sexy killer.

At least I’ve got a stash of booze

For when I’m being idle

There’s wine and whiskey, even gin

If I’m feeling suicidal!

So let’s all drink to lockdown

To recovery and health

And hope this awful virus

Doesn’t decimate our wealth.

We’ll all get through the crisis

And be back to join our mates

Just hoping I’m not far too wide

To fit through the flaming gates!


by Jan Beaumont


P.S. As a Post Script to this CLC contribution I have to report that my doorbell rang yesterday morning – and when I opened the door, I found a present wrapped in yellow tissue with my name on it! Our CLC chairlady Rose waved from her car and said “Enjoy!”

Inside the package was a chocolate Easter egg which had originally been intended as a gift for our “Easter Fun” meeting which never took place, of course! So every Capel Ladies member received their chocolate egg yesterday instead – the day when our Summer Social had been planned  – bringing a smile to all their faces as it had brought to mine!

That was brilliant timing – a cheer-up chocolate treat during lockdown! Cheers to all the CLC Committee for their Delicious Deliveries! Looking forward to catching up when times are more normal again! THANK YOU, Capel Ladies Club!

New Members Wanted!

Capel Ladies Club is 52 years old this autumn, and we’d like to think it’s an integral part of life in our community. We are currently looking to encourage new members to join us and bolster our numbers, whilst bringing some new ideas and interests to the club. We have a range of interesting speakers and activities planned for this year as soon as things return to normal.

Meanwhile –

Capel Ladies Acrostic

A message for Capel Ladies’ Club

Hope everyone reading this is keeping well and safe in these strange times. By now we are getting used to this different way of living, but at the same time we all miss normality and seeing neighbours, friends and family up close and personal! I’ve been really impressed how the situation has brought out such a wonderful community spirit in Capel! People looking out for each other and willing to help with shopping or be a friendly voice on the phone…

My hope is that it will continue when this is all over, which I’m sure it will. I personally am missing Capel Ladies Club and the outside interests and friendship connections it brings us members each month, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. So, Ladies, chin up – stay safe and carry on! In the words of the song –

“We’ll meet again
Don’t know where
Don’t know when
But I know we’ll meet again some sunny day!

Keep smiling through
While you’re hand-washing too
‘Till the Doctors drive the virus far away!”

Sue Woolgar

5th Mar | My Tutu Went AWOL – Iestyn Edwards

Our March meeting encapsulated both a visit to the ballet AND the opera, with some comedy thrown in – so it was an all-round experience! This was thanks to an extraordinary performance by Iestyn (pronounced Yes-tin) Edwards, a stage and TV writer/performer, and also a published poet and journalist. He has found fame as the character Madame Galina, Prima Ballerina, and he has even entertained troops in Iraq and Afghanistan!

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Quite a career – and an evening with a difference for Capel Ladies! Adorned in a white tutu, tights and pink satin ballet shoes, Iestyn made his entrance with a graceful ballet display ending in a pirouette and graceful curtsy, to the sound of enthusiastic applause!

He astonished us further by singing two or three songs, a couple to some recorded piano accompaniment and then one totally unaccompanied – in an operatic style. We were amazed by the power and depth of his singing voice, but of course he is Guildhall trained and he knows his stuff!

He says he enjoys entertaining others although he gets very nervous before performing, even though he has been doing it for nearly 50 years! His father was a country and western singer who used to take Iestyn on stage with him when Iestyn was only four. Later, Iestyn was a member of Southwark Cathedral choir and eventually attended the Guildhall School of Music.

20200305_202257Prior to this he worked for a year as front of house at London’s Covent Garden Opera House, and it was there where he saw his first ballet, Swan Lake. He befriended the lady who ran the bookstall in the foyer of the Opera House, who happened to be an ex-ballerina herself, and she would teach him some of the moves and routines from Swan Lake in the foyer during performances! Thus he added the ballet moves to his repertoire, and the tutu followed!

He loves to tell anecdotes about his colourful career… he has entertained the Queen on board HMS Victory at a special dinner for the Battle of Trafalgar, and this got him noticed by the armed forces. He imagined that he would be giving shows to the Combined Services Entertainment gigs for the officers’ mess at the Hilton, Park Lane, but was shocked to find that he had agreed to go out to war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan to entertain the troops there!

His act became very popular and he has since written a book about his experiences, some of which we heard about at our meeting. Sufficient to say he gave us a very entertaining evening with lots of laughter and amusement as well as admiration for his singing and graceful pirouetting!

Iestyn’s grand finale was ably assisted by his glamorous assistant Mary Butters!

20th Feb | Indian meal at Zaynab

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In mid-February a small group of Capel Ladies gathered at Zaynab, our local Indian restaurant, for an evening meal. It was a very enjoyable occasion with delicious food and friendly service. For some of us it was the first time we had tried Indian restaurant food but I’m sure it won’t be the last!

6th Feb | Talk on Oxygen Therapy Treatment

Our February meeting began, unusually, with a deferred AGM, due to poor attendance at the official AGM in January where not enough members were present for a quorum, so we could not vote on any official business.

However, even after a heartfelt appeal from our chairlady, Rose Chiverton, no-one volunteered to be on the new committee or to take on any of the main jobs. This resulted in the sad decision to close the club after this year’s final meeting in December. The whole of the 2020 Programme has already been arranged and the present committee said they will oversee the running of the club for its final months to see this out, but as from January 2021 Capel Ladies Club will no longer exist!

This momentous decision, although agreed on by all those present, comes after another successful year in 2019 and a celebratory 50th birthday in 2018! Maybe it’s still not too late, if a whole clutch of new members was to join us… so watch this space!

Now to our Speakers for the evening…. Audrey Sparling and Victoria Barber had come to talk to us about a charity which provides the little-known treatment of Oxygen Therapy to people suffering a wide variety of conditions.

Audrey Sparling and Victoria Barber of the Suffolk Oxygen Therapy Centre accept a cheque for £50 from Capel Ladies’ Club. The Centre is the Club’s chosen charity for 2020.

Oxygen Therapy involves breathing pure, medical grade oxygen for one hour at a time whilst sitting in a pressurised chamber. The idea was founded 36 years ago by a Dundee deep-sea diver and Multiple Sclerosis sufferer who, when recovering from “the bends” in his pressure chamber, found that it helped relieve symptoms of his M.S.

For more than thirty-five years this charity has been providing Oxygen Therapy at their centre near Ipswich, (one of 65 such centres in the country), treating conditions including Multiple Sclerosis, some forms of cancer, Motor Neurone Disease, Parkinson’s, Arthritis and many more. In addition they offer post-operative therapy, and also treat professional sportspeople, footballers, motorcyclists and marathon runners who are keen to speed up injury recovery times. This technology is well-established and has a long history, and while it does not claim to cure any condition it has been found to be of great benefit to many of them.

The centre began as one chamber on the back of a lorry in Ipswich Docks, first as a Multiple Sclerosis therapy centre, but expanded as it was found other conditions needed help too, and it moved to an industrial estate in Great Blakenham.

On site they have three spacious, purpose-built chambers in portacabins, which can provide therapy for up to 16 people at a time, and the centre is staffed by fully-trained operators and supported by a team of willing volunteers. A doctor’s referral is not necessary by they do ask that you notify your GP if you wish to undergo some Oxygen Therapy. One of the Speakers, Victoria Barber, is a Lupus sufferer, and has found the treatment has helped relieve many of her symptoms

They are currently engaged in a programme of improvements to upgrade their premises, and their eventual aim is to have a permanent brick-built centre, although this could take up to ten years! The organisation is funded entirely by donations from their members and supporters, and through fund-raising events – they receive no state funding whatsoever.

This good cause has been adopted by Capel Ladies as our charity for 2020, and after a most interesting talk a cheque for £50 was presented to Audrey and Victoria on our behalf. If you are interested to find out more about Oxygen Therapy please visit the charity’s website at www.SuffolkOxygenTherapy.co.uk or give them a call on 01473 830359.

16th Jan | A.G.M.

Unfortunately, the attendance was rather poor at our scheduled A.G.M. and there were only 14 people present, not enough for a quorum. We decided that we would do all the A.G.M. business at our next meeting, starting 15 minutes earlier than usual.

In spite of this we had an enjoyable evening with a “Raucous Raffle” game followed by refreshments with home-made cakes and special biscuits provided by the outgoing committee members.

Fingers crossed we will have sufficient numbers at our February meeting to form a new committee and keep the club running!