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February 2014: AGM and Swishing

As always, February was our AGM meeting – but unlike last year, there were significant changes afoot.

Our founding president, Bex Hartley, had decided to step down as she is awaiting the arrival of her first baby in March. That meant we had to elect a new president – the first time Spa Sweethearts has had to do that.

Luckily, we had two experienced WI ladies on hand to help us and, with advice from Pat Dunhill, we made it through the necessary business of the evening relatively unscathed. Our treasurer, Sue Warburton, gave an update on the accounts, and secretary Suzanne Linford recapped the major events of the year.

It then fell to the outgoing president to give her final report. She managed very well before the baby hormones got the better of her and a few tears escaped – which turned into quite a few more when she was presented with a big bunch of flowers from us all as a thank you for everything she had done. Some of the rest of us struggled to stay dry-eyed as well, including our WI advisers who were set off by Bex struggling through her speech!

It was then time to elect a new president. Because our group is still relatively new and a lot of our members have only been with us for a short time, each committee member introduced herself and everyone was then given the chance to nominate someone they thought would make a good president. The result was that almost every committee member was put forward! However, with other commitments such as work and family life, not everyone felt able to accept their nomination and, in the end, the enthusiastic and hard-working Becky Warburton was chosen as our second ever president.

With the business of the evening out of the way, it was on to our swishing event. Anyone who had brought items of clothing, accessories or toiletries to donate was given the chance to choose from other people’s donations and walk away with up to three new items. There was a huge range on offer, from simple scarves and bangles to beautiful dresses and quality jackets. Everyone seemed pleased with their new items, and there were a few left over to be donated to charity at the end. We all used the advice we had been given in January to good effect.

If you have been inspired by the programme or the work done by the committee and would like to play a bigger part in shaping Spa Sweethearts WI’s future, please let us know. There are lots of ways you can get involved and you don’t have to give up a lot of time in order to make a big difference.

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