Charity Ref. 400/379/98
January 2005
Spire U3A

The members of Spire U3A were entertained at their Christmas Party by the Music Group led by Malcolm Simmonds. They played music and led members in festive singing. The usual food and drink added to another successful meeting.

Despite torrential rain the Memorial Hall, Harnham was full for thee first meeting of the New Year on January 10th. The usual notices were given out. There was an offer to start a course on Spanish and another Digital Imaging Course for beginners along with the details for the weeks walk.

The speaker for the meeting was Karen Rudd who is in charge of Mompassion House. The exterior of the Queen Anne House in the Close has not been changed in three hundred years and the Magnolia on the front walls is 200 years old and has to be carefully pruned. She illustrated her talk with excellent slides and was able to show the state of the interior when the National Trust acquired the property as well as old photographs of some of the rooms and some of the past occupants. Apparently it was the first house in the Close to have electricity.
A decision was made to return the house interior to its genuine Georgian Style and to this end furniture and fittings were purchased and decorations restored.
Last year there had to be some major construction work done during which interesting features were found hidden behind walls. They were also able to open more rooms. It closes in winter for decorations and cleaning some of which cannot be done with visitors around, such as cleaning the chandeliers which requires setting up scaffolding in the centre of the room.

The garden is a joy to sit in and the lemon drizzle cakes in the restaurant are said to be the best for 50 miles around! Members were asked to contact Karen if they were willing to volunteer to steward for a day each week. She recognised some of the audiance who were already volunteers.

The next meeting is on 14th February when the speaker, Ann Seviour, will talk about New Forest Verderers.

The newsletter is in the U3A folder in the Reference Library and on the Salisbury U3A website. For membership information please contact 01722 321731

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