Members and one visitor had a delightful evening at the July meeting.

Posies were presented to ladies celebrating birthdays in July and August and there were many reminders and notifications for forthcoming trips, events and classes.

These included the class entitled Tell the World about your WI where the emphasis will be learning about using social media.

There will also be the opportunity to polish up online skills in September at Great Witley School and on Saturday 1st November, there will be one of the planned preserving days on using up surplus fruit and vegetables in delicious chutneys.

For the singers and thespians, the schedule for rehearsals for Christmas and dates for next two sessions of the Singing for Pleasure evenings were given.

The report was read from Margaret Cook, our delegate at the Annual Conference and it was clear that she thoroughly enjoyed the day.

It was reported that nationally, the WI had 23,000 new members last year so it is very much a thriving and forward-looking organisation.

In 2015 the National Federation of WIs celebrates its centenary.

On Saturday September 13, on its trip round the country, the celebratory baton will be coming to the Forest Group.

The handover from the Teme and Tenbury Group will take place at The Discovery Centre in the forest where there will be afternoon tea.

The baton will be then be taken by representatives of the Forest Group in a cavalcade of classic cars to the station in Bewdley at which point it will be taken on the Severn Valley Railway to Kidderminster where it will be relinquished to the Kidderminster Group.

Caroline Ball, the visiting jewellery-making instructor, had brought along beads of every imaginable hue and texture and attendees were invited to select their beads and design their own necklaces.

There were some beautiful pieces made and some ladies even had to time to make matching earrings! What an enjoyable time members had.

Astley WI’s next meeting will be on Wednesday September 3 at 7.30 pm at Astley and Dunley Village Hall when Suzanne Moule will be giving a talk entitled: A Fresh Start.