Town Twinning Association

On this page we report our social and fundraising events of the past year with photos and videos.

Bits & Bobs

What a pity it was that so few of us were able to take part in the “Bits & Bobs” evening on Friday 27th April at the Congregational Church in Ashby because those who couldn’t make it missed out on a really interesting and enjoyable time.

Del and Bob Neil presented us with a mind-boggling range of some twenty tools, implements and artefacts, which we had to identify and note down. It wasn’t easy! The top score was just 121/2. There were items from all sorts of aspects of life and most of them had us scratching our heads.

We enjoyed a very agreeable buffet supper and glass of wine and the usual raffle was held before the evening came to an end we departed happy and so much the wiser for our encounter with the objects of yesteryear. Many thanks to all who participated.


2018 Panel Games

Once again we indulged in the now regular Panel Games evening on Saturday 24th March at the refurbished “Cottage” now the St. Helen’s Heritage Centre. Elaine and Kay had prepared and adapted the various games for us and just under 30 of us took part in the customary Blue and Red teams.  

Working our way through a variety of TV game shows, including Pointless, A Question of Sport, Countdown and Would I Lie to You the points stacked up and the competition mounted with the victory going finally to the Blue team. At half time there was a break for a supper of Chilli and cakes besides a well-supported raffle. It was especially  good to welcome  both returning and new members to this enjoyable social occasion and thanks go to everyone who organised it and participated. To see a short video of this event click here: 2018 Panel Games

2018 Beetle Drive

Friday 23rd February saw a small select band of us at the Thringstone Community Hall for the Beetle Drive. Three tables of four competed for the honours as the dice rolled furiously and winners and losers from each table migrated up or down as fortune dictated.

Margaret kept us in order and at half time we broke off for an excellent repast of fish and chips from the neighbouring award-winning fish shop and the customary raffle.

With a wide spread of luck and scores the evening concluded with Pat Cort taking away the coveted prize of Pithiviers wine but Ann Shilton, too mitigated any disappointment on receiving a charming photo frame as a booby prize. Many thanks to everyone who took part.


2018 Quiz Night

The annual quiz took place this year on Saturday 13th January at the Ashby Congregational Church. There was an excellent turn out of just under 40 participants and, as usual, the competition was fierce. There were eight teams answering six rounds of ten questions each with a mid time break for a variety of soups, crusty bread and cake and the well-supported raffle was also drawn then. At the end of the evening the scores showed just how close the competition had been but the victory went to “The Flags”, who were awarded the traditional prize of wine from Pithiviers. Many thanks to everyone who took part in the organisation of this successful event and, indeed to all who participated. It was an excellent fund-raiser as well as being a lot of fun!

2017 Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Association was held on Monday 20th November in the Ivanhoe Social Club. Twenty members attended with Margaret Barnett in the chair, who gave a report of the year’s activities. She thanked fellow officers and Executive Committee members for their support and outlined various social and fundraising events as well as details of the visit to Pithiviers.

Treasurer, Alan Briggs being out of the  country, his annual financial report was distributed and read out confirming the present healthy state of funds. A small increase in subscription rates was agreed for next year. It is £12.50 for individuals and £19.00 for families and groups.

Anne Donegan, the Membership Secretary reported on the current membership position, which has declined somewhat over recent years and is now causing concern for the future. She counselled the need to consider means of recruiting new members.  

Executive Committee

Election of officers and committee members was uncontested. All officers and 8 of 10 committee members are in place leaving 2 vacancies. See "Membership : Committee Members"..  

Constitutional Amendment

A constitutional amendment was proposed by the Executive.  Tony Green put forward an addition requiring the Executive to provide the method of sharing the cost of the visit to Pithiviers prior to the AGM in the year before the visit.  Following considerable discussion, Tony withdrew his amendment, given that the method of calculation would be in the newsletter inviting members to participate in the visit.  The original proposal (“The biennial delegation to Pithiviers must be totally self-financing.  The visit costs must be shared by all those who participate in the visit, whether travelling with the "official" group or independently, in a way agreed by the executive committee” to be added to the final clause in “Section 6. Finance”) was then passed with 16 votes in favour and none against.  

Other Business

David Harris spoke of his success in establishing links between the four Ashby primary schools and Ivanhoe Academy, upon which he was congratulated and Sue Strong asked if the Association had adopted any policies, such as safeguarding, data protection, etc. The Chairman stated we had not but would be prepared to consider any drafts she might submit.  

The Future

Next year’s activities, including the June visit from Pithiviers, are already being planned.  

Click here to see a short video of the AGM: 2017 AGM.

The Hoe Down

The Hoe Down barn dance was a real success with Double Capers providing the music and the caller - they did a sterling job in directing the near 70 participants to do-si-do, promenade, back-to-back, step to the left/step to the right and swing, with no real damage to toes or life and limb, but with lots of hysterical laughter!!  It was good fun, along with a supper of a "pulled" pork cob together with a delicious choice of either  cheesecake, fruit crumble or chocolate cake, which we later endeavoured to dance off.

There was a splendid range of raffle prizes and a young guest called "Summer" helped draw the prize-winning tickets with help from Joan and Linda. Hopefully a new recruit for the future.

The evening passed all too quickly and everyone seemed to leave on a "high" with smiles, having had such an enjoyable time.

Tales of the "Titanic"

Something of a departure from our normal events took place on the evening of Friday, 22nd September when we met at Ashby’s Congregational Church to hear a lecture from Jake Billingham on the famous and tragic ship, “Titanic”. A blustery evening seemed entirely appropriate for the event!

 Jake is very much a young man on a mission and explained to us how his fascination with this subject had originally come about and subsequently developed. He has clearly researched it in great detail and was able to regale us with many facts and anecdotes about the famous vessel and its sister ships, Olympic and Britannic, many of which, despite the celebrity of the ship and the tragic events for which it has become infamous over the last 100 years or so were quite new to us or upon which he was able to shed new light.

 The tale was interrupted at the moment of impact of the notorious iceberg to permit a break for refreshments in the form of a buffet of cheese, paté, etc. and a glass of wine with the usual raffle after which Jake took up the story of the actual sinking and its aftermath. It really was a revealing and, indeed, entertaining evening that went down well! Many thanks to Jake (and his father, who diligently controlled the slideshow) and to everyone involved in the organisation and catering. Click here to see a short video of this event: Titanic

Croquet Taster Evening

We were again made very welcome by members of the Ashby Croquet Club on their superb lawns at Moira. Although few in number members enjoyed some excellent coaching. As skills were remembered and refined the games became tactical and quite competitive.  

In keeping with the summer weather this year we were accompanied by drizzle which eventually became light rain. So players and spectators alike were glad to retire to the warm atmosphere of the Half Way House at Donisthorpe where we caught up with each others' news over a well earned drink.  

Everyone indulged in the excellent fish and chip supper to round off an enjoyable evening.
Thanks to Winnie Meadows and Linda Brown for organising this event


 Bastille Day Pétanque

 On Saturday 15th of July we were back at the King’s Arms in Coleorton for our annual pétanque competition. This year there were over twenty of us. Starting with an enjoyable lunch four teams set out to win this annual event beneath lowering skies, which fortunately failed to deliver any rain. The winners finally emerged as David Underwood, Peter Wilkinson with Pat and Geoff Cort. Margaret presented them with the customary prize of  wine from Pithiviers before we headed home. Another great afternoon to celebrate our twin town’s fête nationale. Thanks to Sandra for organising it. Click here to see a short video:

 2017 Pétanque

Biennial Dinner

This year's convivial Pithiviers biennial dinner took place on Friday 19 May 2017 at the Queen's Head in Belton in their delightful function room.

After grace was said by Sandra Adkin they provided us with a delicious meal and the wine slipped down easily.  I can safely vouch for their Fish Pie, which was beautiful to look at as well as delicious, and their Chocolate Mousse with Raspberry Sorbet for dessert was sublime.  The Steak and Kidney Pie met with great praise too, along with the Eton Mess, and those who had Cheese & Biscuits were well pleased too.

The Loyal Toast was proposed by Keith Youles, the Chairman's address was done by Margaret Barnett, and thanks were extended by Alan Briggs - and the sweepstake on the length of Margaret Barnett's speech was won by Joan Foster!

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