SPEAKERS' GROUP  (Updated 13/11/2019)

Speakers' Organiser Margaret Bowman

Venue:   Ayr Town Hall (unless otherwise stated)

Tuesday 1.30 pm - fortnightly

OiR Christmas Party - Tuesday 17th December

As advertised in the Speakers’ Programme, our Christmas Party will be held on Tuesday 17th December at 1.30pm in Ayr Town Hall. Any OiR member who regularly attends the Tuesday afternoon meetings is eligible to attend this event. Admission will be by ticket only and these will be available at the Town Hall meetings on Tuesday 19th November and Tuesday 3rd December. You will require to bring your ticket, which should have your name and OiR membership number written on the back, with you, as this is your entry into the raffle.

Those attending the party are invited to bring along a donation of shortbread or mince pies, and a small gift for the raffle.

The format will be as usual with round tables and white table cloths. Wine and soft drinks, shortbread and mince pies, will be available at the tables. As with last year, the Town Hall is making their wine glasses available to us. We will also have Christmas crackers on the tables.

We will have our lucky draw raffle, with the tickets drawn by Santa who has again agreed to join us. We hope that, this year again, local businesses will also donate prizes for the raffle.

Musical entertainment is to be provided by Ayrplay, members of the OiR Folk Group.

Last year, small quantities of food were not used, and these and surplus crackers were donated to the local Foodbank. This donation from OiR Ayr was gratefully received. We were especially thanked for the crackers which were made available as an “extra” to families with children.

Please make sure that you get your ticket at one of our next meetings.

Meetings are normally held in the Main Hall at Ayr Town Hall, but may occasionally be held in Newton Wallacetown Church if the Town Hall is not available to us.


OIR Ayr – Town Hall Speakers’ Programme, August to December 2019

Welcome back to OiR Ayr’s Town Hall Fortnightly Meetings, to which all members are invited.
Newcomers are welcome to join us and try us out. Although there is no entry charge, we hold a fund-raising raffle under Mary Kane’s kind auspices. OiR’s monthly 200 Club Draw takes place at a Town Hall meeting and the result is shared with those attending. If any of the winners are present they receive their cheques at the meeting, with the remaining winners receiving their cheque by post from the OiR Office.

Meetings start at 1.30pm with a short introduction, and an opportunity for Group Leaders to share information on group activities. Anne and Andrew Monaghan attend when they have information on day trips and holidays at home and abroad to share with the members –this is a well-established contact point for those participating in those much anticipated events. Members of the Tuesday Walking Group Committee are also available with slips advising on future walks, trips and holidays. I am grateful to Jim Irving who continues to assist me in seeking out a member to give a vote of thanks to our guest speaker – a task he carries out in his own persuasive way, so members be aware of Jim approaching you.

27th August
Seascape – May Gilchrist:
Seascape is a charity which has been working in Ayrshire for several years. We hear and see so much in the media about homelessness in the big cities, but possibly know very little of what is happening, or how bad things are, in our own local area. May Gilchrist will update us on the charity’s work in our local community, through its engaging with those who are socially and financially disadvantaged, and provide us with an overview of local problems. It is so easy for people to find themselves in problem situations as our society constantly changes.

10th September
Hansel – Claudia Cheung:
For those of us who have lived locally for many years, we were familiar with “Hansel Village” and Mrs Murdoch’s project with Residential Care for those with learning difficulties – her own daughter Lindy lived at Hansel Village. Hansel Village is no more, but after several changes, and the facility almost being lost, Hansel is back in business, providing a much needed facility offering both residential and day care. Claudia will update us on the work of Hansel. With the loss of NHS provision for respite, it is important that families can still find much needed support.

24th September
The Refurbishment of the Burrell Collection – John Rattenbury:
John will take us through the major refurbishment process which commenced in late 2016. He will describe the major changes taking place and the various displays that we can look forward to seeing when the Burrell reopens. We miss the opportunity of viewing this amazing collection, and we welcome John’s visit to learn more of the remodelled museum and its artefacts. John always delights us with his delivery and content and I am sure that he will have us enthralled on this visit too.

8th October
What the beekeeper didn’t tell me – Jim Walsham:
There cannot be many members who don’t know Jim. At previous talks we have found him to be both an enthusiastic and interesting speaker. This time, he will share some fun and interesting moments of his life with bees. We look forward to an interesting afternoon as he shares some of his knowledge and experiences with us.

22nd October
The Great Smog – Ian McAnulla:
History Group members look forward to Ian’s inputs which always are well received. Ian is making a return visit to the Town Hall talks to share his considerable knowledge with us. Many of us may have memories of the Great Smog – On Friday 4th December 1952 we experienced the worst environmental disaster ever to have occurred in the UK. Over the next four days it killed thousands of people. Ian’s talk will explain the causes and the consequences of the disaster.

5th November
Whiteleys Progress – Bernard Smith:
Last year, Bernard Smith, General Manager of Whiteleys, shared with us the opening of this facility as a resource for families with children experiencing life threatening illnesses. The sudden closure of Malcolm Sargent House on Prestwick sea front, a very well used resource which many of us supported, shocked us. With considerable effort, volunteers strove towards the creation of a new resource. On his last visit Bernard informed us of the long journey to its opening, and the tremendous support given by volunteers and local trades people. Bernard tells me that this is now a well-used resource and he welcomes this opportunity of bringing us up to date on the progress being made.

19th November
Kew Gardens & Hampton Court PalaceSpeaker:  Stephen Dodd

3rd December
A life well lived – Jess Smith:
Jess has agreed to join us again and fit a visit to Ayr into her busy schedule along with the demands made on her by Scottish Government and Local Media. On this occasion she will share her childhood experiences of growing up as a Scottish Traveller, and hopefully again entertain us with her singing. She has led an amazing life and has many experiences of being part of a Travelling Family moving around Scotland.

17th December - Christmas Party:
Once again it is time for our Annual Celebration, with, hopefully, Santa joining us, round tables to sit at, simple food, wine and soft drinks. Entertainment will be provided by Ayrplay, members of our own Folk Group, and hopefully a few members will also share some stories with us. We also hope to have our usual raffles.

There will be no meeting on 31st December, and talks will resume on 14th January when we look forward to welcoming you back after what we hope will be an enjoyable Christmas break.

Margaret Bowman, Speakers’ Organiser

July 2019

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