Charity Ref. 400/379/98


10th February 2003
The Memorial Hall in East Harnham was full for the meeting on February 10th of  Spire U3A, despite the weather. The Chairman gave out the notices and  welcomed the new members.
On March 28th. Bath U3A will be visiting Salisbury for an exchange visit. After the Blue Badge Guides, Hugh Thomas and Penny May, have escorted them round, they will visit the hall for light refreshments before leaving for the return journey
to Bath. Later in the year Spire U3A will visit Bath. It is hoped this will lead to further exchanges with other groups within the nationwide University of the Third Age.
The talk for the meeting was given by Dennis Booth ARPS and was most interesting as it was about the renovation of Highcliffe Castle in Dorset. Apparently it is a Grade 1 listed building which, having fallen into disrepair from neglect in the hands of various owners, suffered two fires in 1966 and 1969. Pictures from 1860 showed how it was when the original family lived there.
Christchurch Council won a Lottery grant and along with English Heritage they have now restored it to its Gothic splendour. Mr Booth showed us slides, which followed the renivations over five years. It gave us an insight into the work of  the craftsmen, such as stone masons, showing them at work and then as the pieces were put into place. There was a wonderful 500-year-old stained glass window. His slides included pictures taken before the work began and some taken now it is open.
A further grant could enable them to open the remaining rooms by 2005.
The next meeting of Spire U3A is on March 10th when Beryl Paton will give a talk on 'Nutrition and Health'
For membership information please contact the Membership Secretary
Contact: Sheila Read 01722 501218

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