Club Bulletin March 2018

The Club Bulletin for March 2018

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                             THE ROTARY CLUB OF CHELTENHAM NORTH

                                               BULLETIN –MARCH 2018

Winter Olympics! – John Phillip

Despite high winds and drifting snow at the venue none of our valiant team members crashed out during the preliminary round of the winter skittles tournament although some deliveries by John ‘Cannonball’ Thompson did, at times, threaten the lives of the stickers. Their steadfastness under fire resulted in the loss of only one skittle and very limited collateral damage to the highly polished surfaces. The men of the Cleeve Highlanders eventually ran out winners in a thrilling contest but the combined team of the Cheltenham North Home Guard (Andrew W, Clive O’G, John P, John T, Richard P, Roger G) and Queen Alexandra’s Nurses (Beth P, Gwynne T-B) withdrew in perfect order, determined to re-engage at the earliest opportunity.

The opportunity presented itself barely 72 hours later. In a rather confused engagement involving no fewer than four battle groups Cheltenham North (Janet K, John P, Steve W) comprehensively vanquished the Highlanders but were eventually forced to strike their colours when faced down by a superior force from North Cotswolds. Modern warfare depends to a much greater extent on intelligence and second place in the Quiz Tournament at Hatherley Manor confirmed that RCCN is well placed for the future as long as we continue to spend at least 2% of subscriptions on equipment and training.

Visit to Cheltenham Ladies College – Michael Rouse

On February 14th a small group of members and partners attended Cheltenham Ladies College for a very interesting and informative tour of the college buildings. We were met by David Runciman, Events Manager and escorted to the Princess Hall for coffee and biscuits. He

introduced us to the Archivist Mrs Rachel Roberts who gave us a brief history of the Ladies College before commencing the tour.

The school was founded in 1853 after six individuals including the Principal of the Cheltenham College for boys decided to create a girl’s school similar to the Boy’s College. The first 82 students began attending the school with Annie Procter serving as Principal. In 1858 Miss Dorothea Beale, a prominent suffragette educator who had founded St. Hilda’s College, Oxford. Miss Beale served from 1858 to 1906 and her remembrance plaque reads laid to rest in Gloucester Cathedral and her ideals and achievements of this college and the lives she has inspired will ever be a true memorial. The site of the first College building was Cambray House in 1853 which sadly has been demolished and replaced by a block of flats.

The beautiful Victorian Princess Hall was built in 1895 and is the building used annually for our Rotary Carol Concert. The original organ has been restored recently and is used frequently at College events.

As the weather was somewhat inclement, we were escorted to the main corridor to view the site of the original Fauconberg House which was bought by Miss Beale to enlarge the College facilities and still stands on the corner of Bayshill Road and St. George’s Road. We were then shown the area of the original Cheltenham Spa. The waters were discovered in 1716 and the College occupies the site of the original Pump Room, Well walk and gardens. The Spa was only of local interest until1788 when King George 111 spent five weeks in Cheltenham drinking the waters daily for his health’s sake. In 1873 the Ladies College moved into the corner of St, George’s Road and Montpellier Street. By 1890 The College had bought the former Pump Room which was demolished in 1895 to make way for the Princess Hall opened in 1897.

Cotswold House the current Principal’s Private Residence was pointed out across the spacious beautifully kept gardens. The visit continued to the Victorian Library with wood panelling and stained glass windows. Then we entered a small room used as a non denominational chapel space to cope with the multicultural society of the College students. Next the first original classroom with the desk used by Miss Beale on runners. On the walls were oil portraits of all the College Principals. Of local interest was Miss Beale’s successor was Miss Lilian Faithful 1007- 1922 who was responsible for setting up the well-known Cheltenham Nursing Homes. Our visit ended in the Quiet Room adorned with superb Victorian glass panels and an example of a William Morris wallpaper.

All our members were captivated having been shown so many beautiful rooms and their Victorian adornments and being accompanied by such an informative Archivist who answered many questions such accomplished approach made our visit truly memorable. We were all grateful that we had a opportunity to view these wonderful rooms so well restored and maintained to such a high standard.

Future Events & Meetings

Thursday 1 March - Cancelled due to heavy snow and amber warning

Tuesday 6 March – Visit to Everyman Theatre to see ‘Pressure’

Thursday 15 March – No meeting due to Cheltenham Races

Monday 19 March – District Skittles vs Evesham – location St Ecgwins Club, Evesham. Food available at 7.50pm, Please advise John T if you wish to attend

Wednesday 21 March – Theatre visit to Stratford to see ‘Macbeth’

Wednesday 21 March – Area 5 Meeting. Location tba

Friday 23 to Monday 26 March – District Conference

Wednesday 28 March –District Skittles vs Tewkesbury Details tba Please contact

John T if you can attend

Thursday 29 March – No meeting due to Easter Weekend.

Thursday 5 April – Next Meeting

Saturday 7 April – Wine Festival

Saturday 19 May – Elvis Tribute Concert

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