Club Bulletin for September 2018

The Club Bulletin for September 2018

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                             THE ROTARY CLUB OF CHELTENHAM NORTH

                                               BULLETIN SEPTEMBER 2018

Absent Friends

August has been a sad month with the passing of two of our hardworking members;

Roger Guy Swayne Champness - a friend indeed

Tribute from Roger Grimshaw

Most of you will know by now of the sad death of a dear friend, Roger Champness (Champs to some), who had valiantly fought cancer for the last five years and passed away on 5th August aged 77. I had known Roger for over seventy years and although our education paths, both in Cheltenham, only met on the sportsfield, we had much enjoyed each other’s company in our teenage socialising years in the town. In fact my family and the Champness family had known each other since 1948,when my father and Roger’s dad had both started their own businesses in the town and WS Champness were our insurance brokers for well over fifty years.

Even as a boy Roger had much enjoyed collecting antiques to the extent that after a short time spent in insurance broking his heart lay in the world of collectable treasures. Roger met his lovely and devoted wife, Josette from France at the Black Tulip Coffee Bar, one of our more upmarket haunts, upstairs on the corner of Promenade and St Georges Road. Devoted to each other for 51 years they both actively engaged with an antiques market in Suffolk Road to selling gifts and collectables in Montpellier and then a wholesale business, Rochamps, importing particularly best quality vases and lamps from Japan.

Roger always oozed artistic enthusiasm with a kind and helpful manner to all.

Many of us also got to know Roger a few years ago, when his good school chum Alan introduced him to Rotary Club of Cheltenham North. He soon joined in activities with much enthusiasm and it wasn’t long before his creative initiative found our club involved in Christmas fairs and his ‘Mile of Coins’ fundraising £13,000 for our Rotary Polio Plus campaign. I always remember his attention to detail in all that he was involved in. Sadly, in more recent years Roger found it hard to attend our meetings but was very proud of his well deserved ‘Paul Harris Award’ and being an Honorary Member of our club. There was always a warm Francophile welcome from both he and Josette when many of us visited their home in Woodmancote.

Little known to many was Roger’s artistic painting skills which in latter years he enjoyed with lessons at Tredington art club. Many of his works have been exhibited under his typically modest hidden name of Guy Swayne!

Roger was much loved by his younger sister Julie and brother Ian. A wonderful service of thanksgiving was held at Bishops Cleeve church to a packed church. A real testament from us all to one who will be sadly missed.

God bless you Roger.

John Henryk Parr - Tribute from Eric Labrum

John was born in 1962 in Neasden North London and spent his formative years there. His parents who still live there left Poland during World War two when the country was occupied by the German Army. John was fluent in Polish.

John studied Dentistry at the Royal Dental Hospital now part of Guys/Kings Hospital Group. Having moved around in his career, he settled in Cheltenham in 1991. At this time he started the Regency Dental Practice located in Royal Well. In 1992 John and Michele married having known each other before settling in Cheltenham. Today they have five children, four boys Matthew 22, Jonathan 20, Christopher 18, James 16 and one daughter Emily 10.

Sport and hobbies were central to John's interests. They number being Team manager for boys of Cheltenham Harriers and Supporting Beaver Cubs. John was a keen photographer, and sang with the 'Blue Harmony' choir. In more recent times he pursued a professional interest in 'Wine'. He achieved his Diploma with honours and regularly judged such competitions.

Some four years ago John joined our club as a member, and was encouraged to have an active role. Through his initiative he single handedly established the Cheltenham Wine festival. With his contacts in the Trade and the manpower available through our Club this Festival is now a regular event and will be a lasting legacy. The considerable amount of money raised is such that the club can be generous in its commitments to local charities. John was given a Paul Harris Award in July 2018.

John had been ill for some years before he mentioned it to the club members. At that time, he knew his condition was terminal. That this should have happened is tragic for Michele and her family. John put up a huge fight to beat his illness but sadly he lost his battle on 9 August. John will always be remembered by the Club for his service to Rotary, and for his desire to be of service to those less fortunate than ourselves.

Gloucesterhire Young Carers Day Out – Vivien Barr

Recently Peter and Pat Watson and I travelled with 2 members of the Glos. Young Carers staff and 8 children (8–13 years) from the Racecourse railway station on a very shiny steam train to Winchcombe to have a BBQ at the Keenan’s home. Before we got to the station we saw the Keenans and Worthingtons waving very hard to us from the special look-out in the garden.

When we arrived at Winchcombe station the children had fun playing with a selection of teddy bears dotted around, as this was a Teddy Bear Special Tuesday which the volunteer railway staff put on during the holidays. Further along the platform we found a railway carriage with push-button toy trains to play with, and so this was another fun thing for them to try out.

Then we walked along the road, and on seeing the balloon on the gate post the children then rushed up the drive to see what was around the corner.

It didn’t take them long to start playing football or jumping up and down on the trampoline while the chefs started cooking the food.

It didn’t take them very long either to clear their plates and enjoy the ice cream cornets with strawberries. After this they were led on an expedition to pick blackberries, and you can imagine the colour of their hands and some faces when they returned. All too soon it was time to go back to the station for the return journey. Once again we were waved on our way by Peter and Janet, Andrew and Gill, to whom our very grateful thanks for their BBQ skills and the generous welcome

they gave to the Young Carers.

This group of young children miss out on a normal life due to their family circumstances, and this one day gives them a chance to have a fun day out with other children who have similar problems.

I would like to thank Peter and Pat, Peter and Janet, and Andrew and Gill for their very good natured help with this occasion, and the Club for funding this special day, it is money very well spent.

Boules at Evesham, we sent them down the river – Nigel Gilhead

We fielded five members, John S, Richard P, Nigel G, John and Beth P, with four to play at any time. The terrain is on the flood management area, out of sight of the road, but we found it and the narrow car park entrance.

For openers John S won his singles game and Richard P, John P and Nigel G won their doubles. Beth held the tape measure.

For the next two rounds Richard P and John S partnered each other in the pairs, and after some persuasion Beth P partnered John P. To the delight of our President, who started the evening as a boules novice, this combination won all four of their games. A six-nil win to Cheltenham North.

We then crossed the road, to the Northwick Hotel annex/bar, where we enjoyed a sociable drink with the Evesham players.

Cleeve Vale came to play, it was rained off.

Having surprised the landlady as we arrived early at the Sandford Park Alehouse in the pouring rain, and asking for our sandwiches to be served early; we were unable to arrange a new date before the competition ended. So we agreed to move on to the skittles season.

North Cotswolds (Rams) came west, we sent them south

Once again we fielded five members, John S, Richard P, Nigel G, Tony H and Andrew W, with four to play at any time.

For openers Nigel G won his singles game and Richard P, Andrew W and Tony H won their triples. John S caught his breath and practiced, on the ever changing terrain.

For the next two rounds Richard P and John S partnered up again with Tony H and Andrew W forming the other partnership. Despite having to break for 10 minutes while the rain lashed down, in that configuration, now playing on a dry-damp-drying-surface, we won two of the four doubles games. The result was clear win by Cheltenham North of four games to two.

We all, retired to the Sandford Park Alehouse, almost taking over the upper room, for a drink and supper, in a warm and dry, sociable environment

World Polio Day – extract from RIBI newsletter

Get ready for World Polio Day on Wednesday 24 October. Whilst tremendous progress has been made, the final steps on any journey are often the hardest and 2018 has been far from easy. To date there have been 14 wild polio cases this year and positive environmental samples show that we cannot take our foot off the accelerator. Significant challenges lie ahead and all rotary clubs are being asked to raise money and support the final push.

Garden Parties – Peter & Janet Keenan

33 members and partners attended the second garden party lunch held this summer at Orchard House, Greet on 30 August. As the weather, although fine, was a bit cool the meal was held in the garden rooms where we managed to seat everybody at 4 tables. The various delicious puddings were given by some of those attending. It raised £538.00 . The first party was attended by 27 members on 5 August- both parties raised a total of £1,027.00 thanks to the generosity of those attending. The £1,027 will go a long way towards the cost of this year's solar lights project in Zambia by the Club joining with the Rotary Club and Rotaract Clubs of Lusaka and the English charity, SolarAid operating in Zambia. The project is to assist disabled children in some 300 poor families and and to provide solar lights for 3 clinics and a hospital (which sees an average of 1834 patients a quarter) which are without electricity. New Rotary Tabards

RCCN had recently purchased 30 new Rotary Tabards – the old ones having virtually fallen to pieces.

Dates for your diary

Monday 3 September – Rotary District Area 5 Meeting at the White Hart Inn, Winchcombe, GL54 5LJ 7 for 7.30pm

Thursday 6 September – Club Meeting with Guest Speaker Mark Summerfield – ‘Our Digital Footprint’. Duty Rotarian TBA

Thursday 20 September – Club Council Meeting 5pm at The New Club

Thursday 20 September – Club Meeting with Guest Speaker Matt Rudman – ‘Motivation in Sport and Business. Duty Rotarian TBA

Monday 24 – Thursday 27 September – club visit to Dartmouth

Thursday 4 October – Club Meeting with Guest Speaker Danielle Mills – ‘Medical Dogs’.

Duty Rotarian - Mike Stevens

Wednesday 10 October – Visit to Westons Cider – see Sally Whittal for details

NB - Snowdrops

RCCN has been given the weekend of February 16th/17th 2019 to do the teas at Colesbourne for people coming to see the snowdrops. Please keep this weekend free because we will need help on both days. Thank you.

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