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Hereford & Worcester

Hereford and Worcester (H&W) Group was formed in the mid-nineties by a small group of women after seeing the 1996 BBC documentary on Growing Old Disgracefully.

Over the years, H&W membership has steadily grown to almost forty members who come from a wide area including Worcester, Malvern, Droitwich, Kidderminster, Monmouth, Hereford and Stourport.

Our calendar of events is normally planned every six months.  Historically, a regular planning meeting was held, but recently it was agreed that two volunteer members would take email suggestions and put together a calendar for general approval.  This worked well until COVID blighted our lives! Visits to places of local interest are still popular and a well-known local pub (a Wetherspoons) allows us to use one of their meeting rooms for our more cerebral pastimes, such as discussions and board games, in return for us enjoying their lunch menu.  Our recent programme included a tour of Churchfields, the farm where they produce the eponymous delicious ice cream as well as Droitwich salt, as used in high-class restaurants; a theatre visit, a walk and pub lunch, plus a session of “Silver Swans”, ballet dancing for Seniors.

H&W has taken its turn at producing the Network News newsletter and has organised two Annual Gatherings.  The most recent in 2018 held at the Bank House Hotel in Bransford a few miles from Malvern coincided with the 25th anniversary of the Growing Old Disgracefully network and provided H&W with the unique opportunity to choose the theme of ‘Empowerment’ to celebrate this landmark in g.o.d’s history.  One of g.o.d’s founder members, Mary Cooper, worked as a land girl in the village of Colwall nestling in the lee of the Malvern Hills and, for the first time since 1945, she was able to visit the farmhouse where she was billeted during the war and remember the soldiers she met when attending dances in the village hall!

H&W has evolved with an ethos of mutual support and strong bonds of friendship, partly as an outcome of members sometimes hosting events in their own homes. Currently we are holding fortnightly virtual meetings via Zoom. Obviously this is not feasible for everyone, so we are also arranging small local gatherings of up to 6 people, such as Afternoon Tea in the garden, a stroll around the grounds of a local NT property (plus a takeaway cuppa/icecream/cake!) and a walk along the river Severn in Worcester plus lunch at a cafe near the Cathedral.

New members can be assured of a warm welcome and are invited to attend three meetings to get to know us before making the decision to join the network.

Want to know more?   Please get in touch with our Group Contact:

Val Monaghan

valmonaghan02@gmail.com                    Tel. 01905 923018

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