About us

Pages last updated: Monday 14th June 2021



We now meet virtually by ZOOM (Thursdays at 7.00pm).

email: leedselmeterotary@btinternet.com  
Website address: www.leeds-elmete.rotary1040.org

Registered Charity Number 1033420


Because of the Covid-19 outbreak we have had to meet by 'Zoom' since April 2020 and have found that we can be just as effective as a Rotary Club when we do not meet Face-2-Face. We have also been able to have guest speakers and to 'meet' with other Rotary Clubs by Zoom. We have decided to continue meeting this way for now, perhaps with the occasional lunch out together (various venues) when it becomes possible and safe to do so.

We are sad to leave our meeting venue, The Bingley Arms, Bardsey, Leeds 17, after so many years. They have really looked after us very well, for which we are profoundly grateful. We may drop in for lunch one day ......


Our President for 2020-21 is Rotarian Anthony (Tony) Vincent, PHF. 

Tony is a retired Dentist who, when working, had a dental practice in Castleford, West Yorkshire. He joined the Rotary Club of Castleford in early 1989, becoming their President in 1996-97. He transferred to the Leeds Elmete Club in February 2008. Tony has enjoyed many avenues of service to Rotary and the Club over the years, including service on the District International Committee. He has been highly involved with many international projects. This will be his second term as our Club President. 

Tony is having a great Year, despite the difficulties currently being experienced by all of us.


How it all started, June 2020:

We, sadly, live in an era in which Food Banks are needed, despite ostentatious frivolity by many. There are geographical areas where poverty and need are only too real. The situation is likely to worsen when the economic effects of the Covid-19 Virus outbreak become manifest, regarding job security, the end of the furlough scheme etc. Many more people may find themselves in real difficulty. With this in mind, we agreed on 18th June, at our weekly virtual meeting on Zoom, to donate £500 immediately to one of the local food banks where we have recognised real need. 

So on 29th June 2020, President Ken and Treasurer Neale went to St Richard's Church (see picture) in the Parish of Seacroft in Leeds, and handed over a cheque for £500

UPDATES  2021(in reverse chronological order

Fri. 11th June 2021

Here is the latest update from the St. Richard's Food Bank manager, Lis, following our latest monetary donation. Our Treasurer, Neale, asked for some details in order to report to our AGM and Club Assembly. This is what she wrote:

Many thanks, again, Neale for your Club’s most generous, donations. Our statistics for May as follows: 290 people fed and 179 Saturday night meals given out. 
We were closed on 4th May to give volunteers, a break. 
Recent stories - we have been helping a family Mum and her 3 children. She had been subjected to domestic abuse. Her father is helping her. Also, last week a family turned up 2,adults and 2 children. They were ashamed to come to a foodbank, but both parents (Business Analysts) had been made redundant due to Pandemic. 
We are having quite a new clients coming for help and a few referrals coming from local schools. Parents asking for help. 
I hope these cases will be of use to you for your report and that your AGM goes well.
Sincere thanks and best wishes, 
from Lis. 
P.S. We are still giving out the Washing Powder the Rotary Club provided which is much appreciated by all. 

Tues. 25th May 2021

Another delivery of food by 4 of our members. We received another pallet stacked high with food (and other items) from Giving World yesterday. The consignment consisted of Bags of Tortilla Chips (different flavours), Oatcakes, Jars of Pasta Sauce, and Packets of Hot Chocolate drink. There were two smaller boxes with drinking mugs, plastic wine glasses, table napkins, pen and stamp kits, colouring pencils, summer scribbles sets etc (the latter for little gifts for the children). The good filled the boots of 3 cars and one estate car boot! Naturally Lis and her co-workers were delighted to receive this shipment, especially since it was a slightly out of the ordinary food donation for the Bank and will be appreciated by the recipients as a bit of a change.

We are greatly indepted to for this donation as with the others in the past year. So far they have sent us over £4400's worth of good FOR FREE!! Thank you so much Giving World (in Leicester).

9th March 2021: Eggs for Easter

Treasurer Neale reports: Accompanied Past-president Ken, who has been egg shopping, to the Food Bank today. Got there a bit early and was able to help some old folk from Garforth Church unload their collected food. They had collected free, out of date, fruit & veg from Tesco in Seacroft on Monday evening. Picture is of Ken & Lis.

22nd February 2021: News from the Foodbank: We continue to be very busy. In January we fed a total of 421 people. (336 adults and 85 children). 151 takeaway meals were handed out - despite the cold and snow people still queued up for a hot meal.


STOP PRESS: In early December we heard that we have been awarded a District 1040 Matching Grant by Rotary International tosupport this work. They have matched the £1,000 we orginally collected from Club Members and others. Our fundraising continues..... {Many of our members have donated the cost of the meal we usually enjoy when we meet each week, since this has not happened since early March 2020 - along with other generous gestures of support.}

CLICK HERE to go further into the story so far of this year's support

Moparru Orphanage, Andhra Pradesh, Southern India.

Recently the club donated £725 to the Moparru Orphanage, following a presentation in February 2020 from the Waller family (Past President Ken Garrett’s sister Maggie, and her family – husband and two grown up children) who have volunteered at the orphanage for up to a month several times. They were able to give us a real insight into the lives of the children and of Raju Pallikonda and his wife Lavanya, who run the orphanage.  

Maggie Waller writes: Moparru is a tiny, poor, rural village of 500 people. The land for the orphanage was donated by an elderly, local Hindu lady and opened in 2012 with a handful of children. 70 children are now well cared for as part of one big family. Lavanya and her grandma do most of the cooking outside on an open fire. The children eat well: mainly vegetables and rice, with chicken as a very occasional treat. The accommodation is basic, with bucket showering for the children, but there is clean water, one large room for the girls and a similar one for the boys. The children attend the village primary school and then go on to high school and to college. Education is valued highly by the children and their daily routine starts around 5.30 am with prayers and finishing homework. Many children at Moparru are orphans, others may have one parent who is sick and the family cannot look after them. Local pastors also find children living in dreadful conditions on the streets and bring them to Moparru.Through previous donations, work began to build additional accommodation to provide some more rooms and a kitchen, as well as a large space for eating and worship. The outer structure, flooring, window grilles and concrete shelving for storage are almost finished.  The donation from Rotary will now allow Raju to finish the doors and windows so that the building will be weatherproof. There is more to do to put in electrics and equip the kitchen, but this donation is a huge step forward. It has been a difficult year for the orphanage. Some of the people who support children through a regular monthly sponsorship of £15 were unable to continue because of pressures of Covid 19. Sponsors are desperately needed as this is the only regular income Raju receives to provide for the children. If this is something Club members, or others, may be interested in, please contact Maggie Waller: maggieeducation@aol.com

We received a heartfelt thank you from the Waller family and Raju, and are delighted that our donation will make a positive difference to the lives of the children whose smiles say it all! 

Our Purple Crocuses are blooming lovely

We bought a batch of purple crocus corms in the autumn, to support the Rotary Polio Plus campaign  and they gave people a touch of spring beauty, sadly now disappeared, but they will be back next year.

Donation of Dictionaries 4 Life to Local Schools

Past President Ken was recently able to deliver the Dictionaries 4 Life we ordered for the local schools where some of our members hear students read. The schools are: White Laith Primary (LS14), Castleton Primary (LS13), Shakespeare Primary (LS9) and Grange Farm Primary (LS14). Here is the post on Facebook from Learning-Partnerships-Leeds thanking us for the donation and showing a picture of a few of the happy recipientsHere is the post on Facebook from Learning-Partnerships-Leeds thanking us for the donation and showing a picture of a few of the happy recipientsHere is the post on Facebook from Learning-Partnerships-Leeds thanking us for the donation and showing a picture of a few of the happy children.


A number of our members plan to continue to help out at two local schools by hearing children read once a week when they will be allowed back into school in the autunmof 2021. We have also donated much needed Usborne illustrated dictionaries to one school. (See above).

This initiative started in September 2013, and is proving to be a very valuable and rewarding experience for the students, the schools and the Rotarians involved.

To read more about this initiative: Click Here.


At our virtual meeting by Zoom on 25th February 2021, President Tony presented our President - Elect, Rotarian Martyn Philips, with a well deserved Paul Harris Fellowship. This award is in recognition of Martyn's contribution to Rotary over many years. The announcement was met by a round of applause and many a 'well done' by the members in attendance.

Martyn transferred to the Leeds Elmete Club in 2010 from the Leeds Cross Gates Club, (which was about to close). Martyn became a Rotarian with Cross Gates in November 1994, and was their President in 2003-04. He was our President in 2013/14, and is about to have a 'second-go' in the Chair starting in the new Rotary Year this coming July.

He is a stalwart member of the Club, and is currently responsible for our largest Charitable income stream since he runs the Club's very successful '100 Club'. A now partially retired Solicitor, he can always be relied upon for an 'expert, considered opinion', and is a thoughly nice bloke! Very well done Martyn - you deserve this award. The picture below shows a proud Martyn with his certificate, which had been delivered to his home by President Tony (who happens to be his brother-in-law!).

Paul Harris Fellowship awarded to Immediate Past President Ken Garrett

At our Zoom Virtual Club Meeting on Thursday 27th August 2020, President Tony had a delightful surprise in store for our Immediate Past - President, Rotarian Ken Garrett, in the form of the award of Rotary's highest honour - a Paul Harris Fellowship. Ken was shocked but delighted at this recognition of his Service to the Club and to Rotary. Below is  photograph taken at Ken's home on the following day when President Tony was able to present the Certificate and the PHF lapel badge to Ken in person.


Ken, a retired General Medical Practitioner, joined Rotary in 1986, and has been our Club President 3 times (1993-94, 200-10, and 2019-20). He has been a loyal servant to Rotary over the years, being involved in all the Club's activities, but of special note, the acheivement of a global matching grant in 1997 for a children's AIDS hospice in South Africa. Well done Ken, you thoroughly deserve this award.


    (Click on the Aquabox logo to go to their website.)

Our Club members normally fill three Aquaboxes a year and deliver them to the Aquabox Depot in Derbyshire. However, because of the Corona Virus pandemic we have not been able to complete this task in 2020 21. We will be starting again soon.

STOP PRESS - July 2020- One extra! One of our members bought an Aquabox (£150) on 5th July 2020 with the money he saved because we had not been meeting in person. His savings have been the cost of the meal and drinks each week for 15 weeks.

Below is an extract of an email received by Aquabox with a quote from one of the recipients in Somalia of the boxes we sent in 2012: "When I was pregnant, I had worries to cloth my babe. We dont afford food most times so monies for cloths is hard to get. I thought the box was just for water and was happy when I found the towels and the clothes. I cried and hided them for after the delivery. This is the first time I ever had something new to wrap my baby in. My oldest son Ahmed will not leave the shelter without his new books and bag. He is too proud when he carries them with the other boys. Even me, I can share the cooking utensils with my neighbors. It feels like being home again. Truely these are blessings for all of us!"

Makes you feel good that the efforts of a few people in Yorkshire can have such an impact on the lives of people in need so far away! 

Used Spectacles for Vision Aid Overseas.


In 2019-20, 9 boxes of used spectacles were sent to VAO. Regretably we are no longer supporting VAO for various reasons, most of all because of our inability to collect discarded spectacles and process them.

Our Webpages

Our Club is one of very many clubs in Great Britain and Ireland currently using the RIBI website template, each club being required to make an ANNUAL payment of £50. This is raising approximately £63,000 for The Rotary Foundation each year!

Happening soon...

Thu, Jun 17th 2021 7:00 pm

Joint Club meeting with Horbury and Ossett RC by Zoom


Thu, Jun 24th 2021 7:00 pm

Club meeting by Zoom

Thu, Jul 1st 2021 7:00 pm

First Club meeting of New Rotary Year Zoom

Thu, Jul 8th 2021 7:00 pm

Club meeting Zoom

Meetings & Venue

Where and when:

We meet on Thursdays at 7.00 pm. by Zoom.

(No meeting on two Thursdays around Christmas.) We meet Virtually on Thursdays by Zoom now.
We will occassionaly have Lunch-time get-togethers.nomadically in future on an ad-hoc basis.

Web site about the locality

Rotary News

Be part of a global network of volunteers, trying to make the world a better place. Please also see the 'links & news' page for information from the local district and live feeds from Rotary International and Rotary International in GB&I.

Rotary serving communities through supporting foodbanks

Diversity is part of Rotary’s core values