We were pleased to welcome Sophia Roberts as our latest member.
It fell to prospective member Temuulen Odbileg, to get our meeting underway, with an assured welcome, and setting out the usual housekeeping rules before welcoming Michael John Smithson to the lectern as our Toastmaster for the evening.
Michael John gave a warm welcome to members and guests, and specifically to Ann Carver who was celebrating a significant birthday. A rousing chorus of 'Happy Birthday to you' followed.
Michael John now introduced his team, starting with the Time Keeper. Simon Roberts was in charge of the lights but as he had only just arrived Keith Oliver stepped in and explained the use of the lights.
Michael John next asked Keith Oliver to explain his role of Grammarian. Keith introduced his word of the evening “approbation” meaning formal approval, and said he would be looking for use of good language as well as inappropriate use of filler words.
Next Michael John called Gavin Meikle to the front to set our warm up. Gavin asked those attending how they exercised, which led to various activities from power lifting to walking, cutting logs to yoga and even surfing and dancing. Clearly our members are an active bunch.
Again we had a full quota of prepared speeches. Ray Adams started with his Project 6 speech entitled “Your Mind can Map your Destiny” on the use and advantages of mind maps. This was followed by Allan Wadsworth with his Project 7 speech “8.7 million” looking at household figures and in particular the scale and needs of the private rented sector.
It was left to Karen Chapman to give the final speech, her Icebreaker, with a speech “Why I Joined Toastmasters”.
It was now time for the break with an opportunity for members and guest to mingle, chat and try the birthday cake provided.
As usual time soon flew by and it was down to Temuulen to get everyone back to their seats for the second half.
Evalautions were given by Elena Grigorieva, Keith Oliver and Ann Carver. Elena and Keith both opted for the 3 things I liked, 2 areas for improvement and 1 thing I will take away, while Ann opted for her own style she entitled “World Wide Wordies” focussing on What I liked, Why I liked it and What could be done better next time.
With the evaluations out of the way Michael John called on Marie Newman to lead the Table Topics. Marie asked volunteers to explain why their unusual sports should be considered for t he Olympics. The sports were Extreme Ironing (Keith Oliver), Black Pudding Throwing (Allan Wadsworth), Toe Wrestling (Wendy Benson) and Baby Crawling Marathon (Gavin Meikle).
Brent Crouch gave the Table Topics Evaluation highlighting the structure and humour and that it was alright not to stick rigidly to the question.
Keith Oliver returned to the lectern for the Grammarian's report. The word of the evening had not been used much, so he got everyone to say it! The nature of the prepared speeches had not been conducive to picture painting but he highlighted some good use of words, with some descriptive phrases in Karen's speech, and the use of repetition by Ann and Allan to emphasise points. The use of filler words had not detracted from the overall speeches.
With the formal part of the evening over Wendy Benson gave the General Evaluators report highlighting Michael John's inclusive and warm approach, and emphasising the need in evaluations to have a structure and improvement points.
Keith Oliver as club president reminded those present that our next meeting was our Speech and Evaluation Contests and encouraged members to participate.
Michael John then closed the meeting with the giving of the awards.
Best Speaker – Karen Chapman
Best Evaluator – Keith Oliver
Best Table Topics – Gavin Meikle