Wednesday, 23 June 2021

Henley Rotary Club and Rotary Club of Henley Bridge

COMING together to celebrate 111 years since the founding of the Rotary movement,

COMING together to celebrate 111 years since the founding of the Rotary movement, the two Henley Rotary clubs enjoyed an evening of fellowship, sharing of fund-raising ideas and good food and drink.

Members and guests were also given an insight into some of the great rock bands of the past 40 years.

Henley Bridge Rotary Club hosted the event at Badgemore Park Golf Club and invited members of Henley Rotary Club, partners and guests as well as district governor Fred King.

The speaker was Pete Smith, who is Henley born and bred.

He told how having been a successful agent for the Kinks, he was brought in by Harvey Goldsmith to manage the organisation of Live Aid, a massive worldwide event inspired by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure through their charity Band Aid. Mr Smith said he was told that if it was a success his name would never appear but if it failed his name would never be forgotten.

The concerts took place on July 13, 1985 to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine.

The devastating effects of the disaster had been brought into people’s living rooms by Michael Buerk’s BBC news reports in 1984.

Having already booked many of the top bands and stars for Live Aid, Mr Smith approached Paul McCartney and spent more than an hour persuading him to participate. McCartney finally agreed but then admitted he had planned to be there all along because he had been told to do it by “the management” — his children.

Mr Smith regaled the audience with jokes and anecdotes from his many dealings with the rock ’n’ roll stars both here and overseas, including Mick Jagger, Charlie Watts, Pink Floyd, David Bowie and Alice Cooper.

Both clubs have seen an increase in membership this year and always welcome enquiries. If having fun over a meal and enjoying social activities while putting a bit back into the community appeals to you, we would love to hear from you.

For Henley Rotary Club, call Phil Fletcher on 07979 690437 and for the Henley Bridge Rotary Club, call Mike Pooley on 07836 333788.

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