Monday, 21 June 2021

Henley Ladies Probus Club

AT the 205th meeting in July the chairman welcomed members and received three apologies.

AT the 205th meeting in July the chairman welcomed members and received three apologies.

Heather Clark mentioned a summer concert by the South Chiltern Choral Society called Come to the Opera to be held in the Great Hall at Reading University.

The chairman then introduced Cilla Rackham, from the Henley Volunteer Drivers group, who appealed for volunteers to help with a door-to-door service driving elderly and disabled clients from the surrounding area to make essential journeys for doctors, opticians and hospital appointments.

Costs are met by donations from various organisations around the town. For more information, call (01491) 572 923 or visit the Citizens Advice Bureau at 34 Market Place, Henley.

The chairman then introduced our guest speaker Eda Rose Lawson whose presentation, entitled Couture, Millinery and the Feltmakers Livery Company of London, enthralled us all, being very entertaining and amusing.

Having created a prestigious, successful millinery business in London and Wallingford, Eda was appointed Master of the Worshipful Company of Feltmakers in the City of London for the year 2011-2012 — the first woman to hold this position.

She entertained us with her exciting experiences during her term of office, which took her to many areas of the City, including the Mansion House where she was entertained by the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of the City of London.

Many of her duties were to help raise money for her chosen charities.

One such occasion was the Feltmakers charitable fund-raising event, which took place at Ascot racecourse in the magnificent Pavilion Restaurant with 265 guests enjoying a spectacular and highly entertaining day led by Eda and her husband George.

A total of £70,000 was raised for the Spinal Injuries Association.

Although Eda’s year as Master has ended, her link with the City has not as she has become a Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Feltmakers and is just as busy judging designer hats at Haberdashers’ Hall, made by students from London colleges and other parts of the country as well as still taking a pivotal role with the ompany and the other Livery members.

After many questions, Marianne Ingledew gave a well-informed vote of thanks, to the delight of the speaker.

All meetings of the Ladies Probus Club take place in the morning on the second Thursday of each month.

The next meeting will be on August 8 when Nicholas Witherike will give a talk about Hughenden Manor and the role it played during the war years and the Disraeli and Queen Victoria connection.

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