Summer Social
 40 members of REWI got together in August for an evening of food, fun and line dancing! Liz Scholey got us all dancing to hits from Steps, Abba and the night was finished off with a great Bollywood routine which was excellent fun. We also had a delicious American themed "bring and share" buffet provided by our members.
 
 
 Parham House

 Hidden away at the foot of the South Downs lies Parham House and Gardens. ( So tucked away in fact that one of our cars got lost getting there - blame the sat nav!).
Seven of us from REWI enjoyed a wonderful day out exploring the four acre Wa─║led Garden with its stunning herbaceous borders, glasshouse and garden shop before cooling off in the Elizabethan House. We were all bowled over by the collection of needlework, the Great Hall with its tall windows looking out on the Downs and the spectacular 160 foot long Gallery. With good food plus ice cream to round off our visit it was a perfect day out.

 
 
 Flower Arranging Group
 The below are some of the latest creations of our flower arranging group who meet every month.
  
 
 Perfect Pollinator
 A small group of our members constructed a beautiful beetle to join the Perfect Pollinator trail at RHS Wisley as part of SFWI's centenary celebrations. All the pollinators were on display during the SFWI picnic held on the 28th June where there were several live music performances.
 
 
 Wisley Craft Fair
 A small group of members had a very enjoyable day out at Wisley craft fair. There was much to see and shop for and some excellent music.
 
  Polesden Lacey
 Chinese dragons and tales of a socialite abroad and at home entertained a group of REWI members as we enjoyed a spring visit to Polesden Lacey.
After being greeted at the door by one of our members who is a National Trust volunteer there we toured the beautiful rooms where Maggie Greville entertained Maharajahs, the King and his mistresses past and present!
The sun even put in a brief appearance so we could enjoy the colourful display of tulips around the house and the gardens coming into bloom. 

   
 
 Royal Albert Hall
 Our tour of the Royal Albert Hall coincided with a launch of the DamBuster 75 celebrations at the Hall and was exactly 75 years since the Air Ministry gave its final approval to perhaps the most famous raid of the Second World War.
We didn't get the chance to pose outside the 23ft Lancaster bomber cockpit outside the Royal Albert Hall but one of our members did manage to speak to one of the WW2 re-enactment RAF crew.
The RAH is 146 years old this year and our excellent tour guide Patrick told us many fascinating facts. We learnt that the the hall which has a maximum capacity of 5,902, is bigger than the Carnegie Hall and the Sydney Opera House, and is the largest indoor dining space in Europe. The organ has 9
miles of pipes and 440 laps of the building formed a complete marathon in 1909.

 
 Petworth House
It was a bright but chilly day in February when 8 members of the Art Appreciation Group visited Petworth House to see the exhibition of the works of William Blake which explored his relationship with Sussex, where he lived between 1800-1803. The original works included paintings, drawings and prints and all were very thought provoking! William Blake (1757-1827) was also a poet, one of his poems being Jerusalem. 

 
 
 Butterflies at RHS Wisley
Despite very heavy rain and monsoon like conditions at Wisley, nine of us enjoyed the warmth of the Glasshouse and some beautiful butterflies. After an hour of identifying and photographing we took shelter in the nearby Cafe for lunch before dodging puddles on the way back to the flooded shop to pick up a few bargains.

  
 
 New year meal at La Barbe
 Over 40 of our members attended our new year celebration meal at La Barbe. We were treated to a sumptuous 3 course menu, with plenty of lively conversation! A wonderful evening and a great start to 2018.

 
Christmas 2017
Our final meeting of the year was celebrated with festive jumpers, a Christmas themed raffle and stunning floral arrangements! Wendy Jolley of Reigate Flower Club presented her beautiful creations which were kindly raffled to raise funds for our 2017 charities. A fabulous evening to close the year with festive nibbles and festive fun!
 
Orpheus Centre
 The Orpheus Centre is an independent specialist college in Surrey that increases the confidence and skills of young disabled adults through the performing and visual arts. Fifteen members of Reigate Evening WI enjoyed an inspiring tour and learnt how the centre helps the students to achieve their ambitions and learn to live independent lives. Our group looked round the film, recording and IT suites, the Barn Theatre, and the recently opened Life Skills kitchen equipped to a professional standard. The highlight was an informal performance of three songs from students where exceptional singing brought tears to the eyes. The visit ended with a wonderful lunch in the wood panelled Board Room , part of the original house owned by the Founder of the Orpheus Centre, Sir Richard Stilgoe. The Centre in Godstone is celebrating its 20th anniversary since its foundation in 1997.
For more information visit www.orpheus.org.uk

 
Denman College Visit
 35 members travelled by coach to visit Denman, the WI College, on the 9th October. We were treated to an autumnal baking cookery demonstration, a tour of the college and its history, and plenty of refreshments including a 2 course lunch.

  
 
 Leighton House
 An Art Appreciation Group trip in 2017 to Leighton House, London to see the Alma-Tadema At Home in Antiquity exhibition - absolutely amazing!

 
Live at Home Scheme 20th Birthday Party 
Six members of REWI served refreshments at the 20th birthday party for the Live at Home Scheme on Friday 28th July. DeCaf, a dementia café which is part of the local Live at Home Scheme, is one of the charities chosen by REWI members for support & fundraising this year.

 

 
Funny Girl the Musical
Eight members travelled by train on the 27th April to the New Victoria Theatre at Woking to see ‘Funny Girl’.  We all thoroughly enjoyed the critically acclaimed West End show and loved the performance by Natasha J Barnes who took the role of Fanny Brice, previously played by Barbra Streisand 50 years ago.  Darius Campbell acted the part of Nick Arnstein, previously played by Omar Sharif.  Natasha’s voice was amazing!

 
Surrey History Centre visit
Ten members of REWI visited the Surrey History Centre at Woking on the 26th April.  We had a very interesting and informative guided tour of the various rooms at the Centre including the search room.  We were shown how historical documents and records are cleaned and repaired by a specialist conservation team, then packaged and catalogued and stored in environmentally secure and fire protected strong-rooms.  We studied six historical items from the Reigate area, including two maps, a diary and a register from Earlswood Hospital - all very fascinating.  A great day out!
You can find out more about the Surrey History Centre here.

 

 
Earlswood Carnival 2017 Jam and Scone Judging
We were honoured to be invited to judge the scone and jam competition at the Earlswood May Day Carnival yesterday. A lovely sunny day drew big crowds to the event and there were several excellent entries to the competition. There were two categories for Best Jam and Best Scone, Over 16's and Under 16's.All entries were highly commended by our Professional WI Cookery Judge Tessa Langmead of Sidlow WI who gave us an informative insight into what makes the perfect scone. Ann Dale and Ann Haddock took part in the official judging too, including a taste test, how it was presented and the quality and complexity of the recipes used.
The event was a great success for the 2nd Reigate Scout Group who organised it and attracted big crowds to see the Dog Show, bubbleologist, fairground attractions, games, tombola, raffle, Guess the Weight of the Pig and lots more too! Here are the four of us enjoying the show, someserious scone tasting going on and Ann H and Tessa showing off their tombola prizes.



 
Bluebell Walk at Gatton Park
It was a glorious day on Wednesday 19th April when six members of REWI gathered in the Wray Lane car park at the top of Reigate Hill for a walk in Gatton Woods. 
The walk took an hour and zig-zagged through the woods past truly glorious displays of bluebells at their best. 
Carpets of deep blue colour stretched away between the tree trunks into the distance, cool and beautiful with a slight, elusive fragrance.  
These are English bluebells - delicate, drooping, almost purple, flowers on slender stalks with not a Spanish intruder
in sight.   Spanish bluebells are paler blue, straighter, taller, stronger and have the ability to hybridise with the
English variety, thus putting the true English bluebell at risk for the future.  Dig them out! The walk ended with coffee by the car park cafe overlooking the view of Reigate.

Trip to see The Girls at the Phoenix Theatre, London
Several of our members enjoyed this fantastic musical, which was both sad and funny. A beautiful day made for a sunny trip to London and you can see our President June here dressed to impress!


Craft Group
These beautiful quilts have been created by our 2016/17 Craft Group. They have been made for a charity called Siblings Together. One of the aims of the charity is to enable siblings, who have been taken into care, to spend time together at a summer camp and be given a quilt to remind them of happy times with their brothers or sisters.

Kathryn, who leads the Craft Group told us how they came to be involved in making the quilts. "This was a project in which we all wished to be involved so we each made a block for our quilt. Since these quilts would be for children we wished to use brightly coloured fabrics with a range of textures. These blocks were then joined together by a technique called "Quilt as you go". This technique was new to all of us. However, one of the aims of the craft group concerns learning new skills and sharing our knowledge and inspiration with the rest of the group. Definitely, this is a win-win situation: we learn new skills and two children get a lovely quilt each"
 
   
Churchill's War Rooms, London
A small group of our WI visited Winston Churchill's Cabinet War Rooms, one of the five branches of the Imperial War Museum. The museum comprises an historic underground complex that housed a British government command centre throughout the Second World War, and is located beneath the Treasury building in the Whitehall area of Westminster. They became operational in August 1939, shortly before the outbreak of war in Europe. They remained in operation throughout the Second World War, before being abandoned in August 1945 after the surrender of Japan.  
 
   
Liberty in Fashion  


   
        
Mayor's Craft Fair in Reigate Town Hall

 
Afternoon tea at St Marys Church Centre





Easter hats Art Textiles Fashion & Textile Museum
      



 Nancy's special birthday!                   Neil Miller Head Gardener at Hever Castle judging the cakes

  

 


English garden Tea Party at Shelagh's house in aid of East Surrey Macmillan Centre, our chosen charity for 2016.

 


 

A Midsummer's Night Dream at the Globe Theatre
 

Open Air Theatre "The Tempest" at Polesdon Lacey
 

 







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