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The Committee List March 2019 - March 2020 with contacts, The current Newsletter / and older newsletters, Committee minutes and contact numbers for Events are available by Logging into the Members Page.
 If you are a member of Swanland U3A then click on Request an Account complete form and Submit it.


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Due to the risk from Covid-19 infection to the health and well being of our members, the AGM, Thursday monthly meetings and most group activities are postponed until further notice.
For more up to date information please read the report on our Chairman's page

When the lock down was enforced some of our Interest Groups continued with their activities via the internet, they are:-
Creative Writing Group.
They have continued with their group discussion via the internet and their meetings were scheduled to take place on line via Zoom.
Photography 2.
Kept their activity going by following a series of on line tutorials. Some members also posted pictures taken during the lockdown.
Literature Group 2.
Continued their programme of reading via the internet. Members of this group posted their comments and had a lively “discussion”.

A LETTER FROM TAT was forwarded to most members via eMail to advise and to encourage the members to sign up for U3A Newsletter Express.
Swanland U3A Facebook group was set up during the lockdown in order to improve connectivity. So far we have 17 registered members and remain fairly active. Click here to View / Join.
Members in poor health, have also being contacted with their permission over the telephone to check on their health and well being and any possible help under the circumstances.
Finally our Chair periodically keeps in touch with the members through his “Letter from the Chair”.
These are some of our activities during our lockdown, if any other groups have interesting events / occurrences during our this lock down let everyone know by contacting the webmaster.

It’s Good to Talk (TELEPHONE CHAT).

If any of our members would like to receive a telephone call for a chat, you are most welcome to call Hazel Ward on 01482 849168. Hazel has kindly “volunteered “to take this on. If there is enough interest, we will make a request for more volunteers.

Swanland U3A: Facebook Group

With the world isolating because of the Coronavirus we have for our members, a Swanland U3A Facebook group has been started to be a place to share our ideas, to maintain contact with our groups learning and interests and to keep in touch with each other. Click here to View / Join.

Spring Break at Ravenhall, March 2020

63 members were booked to go on this annual break. On account of Covid-19 crisis this was postponed to Spring 2021 with no loss of deposits.

Trip to Wye Valley and South Wales, May 2020

20 members were booked to go on this trip but due to the present crisis this trip was also cancelled. We owe a big thank you to Liz for looking after the interests of our members. Following protracted and difficult negotiations Liz managed to arrange a refund for all the members in the group.

Swanland U3A

Do we need to recruit New Members?

Swanland U3A has one of the largest memberships in the whole region. Currently there are about 600 members. Generally, we take in about 40 new members each year, though we also lose about 40 through natural wastage. So why do we need to gain more members if the situation is so healthy? Several factors come into play:

It is important that our U3A does not stagnate. We need new people coming in to bring new ideas, new ways of doing things and to help run our U3A. A U3A like ours is particularly vulnerable because we are all getting older and eventually less able to participate; therefore, we continually need new and especially recently retired members; It is also important to attract new members to help run the U3A. There may not be enough people in our U3A to volunteer for all the different tasks that are necessary for the organisation to flourish. It is already difficult to find people to join the Committee, become an Officer, help with the sound system or be on the rota for setting out chairs for our regular Thursday afternoon meetings.

News media and social research tells us that there are many retired people who find time on their hands and a reduced circle of friends. Some may have moved to a new area for personal or family reasons. We know from our own experiences in U3A how much membership of a common interest group can bring pleasure and new social contacts.

Our members often express surprise at how many retired or semi-retired people one meets who have never heard of U3A. Recruitment and publicity was discussed widely at the recent convenors meeting and a number of things were agreed. We need to publicise in local magazines and in places frequented by potential members Experience shows that people are most likely to join an organisation through direct personal contact with an existing member. Even better if we invite a potential member to come with us to a Thursday lecture or interest group meeting. The importance of making new members welcome was agreed and steps have been taken to improve the welcome of new members to Thursday lecture meetings.

Some A5 flyers have been printed and every member is asked to have a few to give to anyone who enquires about U3A or who they think may be interested. Group convenors are asked to distribute copies to members and more are available at Thursday meetings at St Barnabas church hall or by contacting a member of the group coordinating publicity which comprises John Munson, John Peck and Robin Shelley.

The issue of the possibility of ‘University’ in our title putting people off is often discussed - not only people who haven’t been to university but also those for whom university was not a happy experience. Many of our interest groups cannot be considered ’academic’ but all groups give the opportunity for social contact. It seems that we cannot eliminate the use of the word altogether but we can play it down by not using it in our publicity material, except as ‘U’. Every member is asked to consider these issues carefully and to look out for potential new members.
Robin Shelley and John Peck

Discover new interests Make new friends

Members of Swanland U3A, comprising 600 retired or semi-retired people, participate in more than 60 regular interest groups listed below:

Please click on Group item to go to activity page with more information.

Art History - Books - Play Read - Classical Music - Jazz & Swing - Opera - Choir - Creative Writing - Discussions - Wine Tasting - Photography - Quizzes - French - German - Modern Greek - Italian - Latin - Spanish - Boules - Badminton - Golf - Croquet - Short Tennis - Folk Dancing - Bridge - Mah Jong - Cinema - Canasta - Scrabble - Health & Wellbeing - Tai Chi - Long Walking - Short Walking - Theatre - Science & Technology - Garden - Family History - Local History - Ancient Civilisations - Archaeology - Singing

Annual holidays, often abroad, and group weekend and day visits are regularly arranged for members.
A good way to start is to attend a 2.00pm meeting on the 1st or 3rd Thursday in the month at St Barnabas' Church Hall to hear an interesting talk on a variety of topics.

Creative Writing

Nine Writers In Search Of An Audience.
We in the Swanland U3A 'Creative Writing' Group are all from very different backgrounds and enjoy diverse interests; what we have in common is a shared love of Creative Writing. Now in our seventh year, we have covered topics ranging from Crime fiction through to Travel Writing, producing plays, poems and short stories.
We share our work with each other, family and friends but would like to invite other U3A members to read our stories and poems on the Members Section Swanland U3A website. (Login Access above)
We hope you find them both enjoyable and interesting.

Yorkshire & Humber Region (YAHR)

Swanland U3A is one of the 55 U3As in the Yorkshire and Humber Region. Events are organised by the YAHR committee for the benefit of all its members. Last year (2019) included visits to the Veola Recycling Unit in Leeds, and Drax Power Station, in which some of the members of Swanland U3A Science & Technology group participated. A four-day residential Summer Learning Break took place in August at The Hawkhills, Easingwold, and was attend by 80 members from inside and outside the region Topics ranged from Art History to Philosophy. Events for 2020 are already being planned and will be available to view on the YAHR website as they become available. A Study Day is being planned for Tuesday, 10th March, at the Mercer Gallery in Harrogate, based upon the Northern Exposure Touring Exhibition featuring works of Turner. The day will include talks and some practical art experience. Exact dates are yet to be confirmed (June 22nd-23rd is a possibility) for a Study Visit in Whitby, based around Captain James Cook, and hosted by Whitby Whalers U3A in conjunction with the YAHR. This year's 'Summer Break with Learning' on July 27th to 30th is again booked at The Hawkhills, Easingwold. Topics will appear on the website when bookings begin, from January 13th.
Hazel Ward

Thursday Meeting.

Could you recommend a speaker, or would you be prepared to speak at our Thursday meeting?
If so, please contact Veronika Keczkes –
Phone number on Committee list

Swanland U3A Website

Keep up to date through our website at and amend by using the email:
Please note most photographs in the newsletter can be viewed on-line in colour.

National U3A Day:

The very first national U3A Day – celebrating the learning, activity and fun that happens every day in U3As across the country – U3A National Day has been rescheduled to Thursday 1st October 2020.

The day Swanland U3A will celebrate the National U3A Day will be discussed nearer the National U3A date.

Each U3A is invited to mark the day by showcasing what they do – from displays, parades, flashmobs or performances – the day will show all the learning, activities and fun that make the movement so amazing.

If you are not currently a U3A member, we’d love you to come along to your local U3A event and help us celebrate the new experiences and fun we are having in the third stage of our lives. And if you want to get involved but you are not yet a member – why not consider joining?

Newsletter Deadline.

The closing deadline for submission of articles for the May 2020 newsletter is 1 April 2020.
Will convenors please give all diary dates for their groups up to and including including September 2020 to
Many thanks. Newsletter Editor - June Clough

Copyright Licence.

The Third Age Trust has entered into an agreement with the Copyright Licensing Agency to allow any participating U3A to multi-photocopy and digitally copy books, journals, magazines and original print material for educational purposes. Swanland U3A has paid the annual fee of £60.00 to enable it to take advantage of the agreement. Please note that the photocopying of music is not covered.

Parking at St Barnabas.

Please park thoughtfully in the St Barnabas car park to maximize the number of cars that can get parked while leaving space where the bollard denotes a reservation for a guest speaker.