Community Support/ Billericay Mayflower Charter Night 2018

President Peter Greene and Wendy, Patrick Rothon and Carol, and Roger Kettle and Sarah all enjoyed Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower's hospitality at its 2018 Charter Night.

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A Celebration To Enjoy

The end of April saw our daughter club, the Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower, hold its Charter Night celebrating 28 years since its initial formation as a daughter club of our Rotary Club of Billericay.

President Peter Greene and Wendy were the guests of the Mayflower club, with Peter and Wendy joining DGE Lesley Sulley and Martin, Past President Richard Rackham and Nicky, Ian Miller and Anne, and Mark Chambers and Stephanie on one table. Patrick Rothon and Carol, and Roger Kettle and Sarah were also attendees but found themselves son a different table.

Formality and Friendship

The Charter Night is a formal event in the Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower’s club Calendar, a black tie event with a formal presentation line of President Mervyn and Jane Rogers, and DGE Lesley and Martin Sulley. 

The protocol was obviously very important, and although some club members “sneaked” into the bar for an early drink prior to the dinner, they were swiftly rounded up and escorted out into the foyer before being formally announced to the line-up and allowed back in. (I was taken by surprise -  I gave our names expecting them to be ticked off the “guest list” only to be loudly announced to the waiting greetings line! - Peter).

With the formal arrivals all complete, dinner was announced and all guests repaired to their tables.   Everybody put into a kitty so there was plenty to drink, and conversation flowed easily and all the visiting guests were made very welcome.

Great Speeches

Everybody had been asked to preselect their food choices, so once “Grace” had been said by Vice-President Carl Johnson, the food came quickly, service was prompt and the waitresses skilful and very pleasant, and the food was ample and very good.

After the meal, and the toast to the Queen by President Mervyn, Lesley Sulley made an interesting and amusing speech in honour of the club.  She even found time to praise the foresight of our Rotary Club of Billericay in “spinning off” and forming Mayflower all those years’ ago.  She assured President Peter that she meant every word and had written it before she knew he would be there.  President Mervyn made a short and excellent response.

The highspot of the evening was Rtn Richard Rackham’s toast to the “Ladies and Guests”, a tour de force about the motives of members joining Rotary, and the secret enjoyment their partners had from “getting rid of them” for one night every week.  The response from Jane, President Mervyn’s wife, was equally amusing and, if anything topped Richard for humour and pointed repartee.  Absolutely great!

Paul Harris Fellows

The speeches over, it was time for the Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower to honour two club members, Richard Rackham and Ifor Roberts with Paul Harris Fellowships.

We join Mayflower in congratulating both of them.  Ifor, a great friend of this club, was praised for his work in overcoming issues and driving through the formation of the new Basildon Town Satellite club, of which his wife Jill is a member, along with our friends Dikster and Nick Lang. 

The rest of the evening was spent listening and dancing to “Eclipse” before it was time for carriages and home.  A very pleasant evening was had by all.