The weather may have been glorious but the flu virus decimated our numbers with some late cancellations. However nothing daunted a quick re-hash of the agenda saw another successful meeting and our three guests, Ellie, Stephen and Zac, were none the wiser.
Keith Oliver opened the meeting and kept the gavel as Toastmaster, welcoming all to the meeting and setting out the protocols. He then asked Charlotte O'Driscoll to explain the lights and the importance of keeping to time.
Karen Chapman was next invited to explain her role as Grammarian which she did confidently setting out the aspects of good and bad language she was looking for, and set the word of the evening as 'panoply' meaning a full or brilliant array.
It was Charlotte who gave us our warm up, reflecting upon the recent Bank Holiday weekend and asking those present of how they would spend their ideal weekends. Not surprisingly most chose to chill out, some were more active, while others got on with the chores and gardening.
Given the reduced numbers we only had two speakers, Ray Adams and Ann Carver. After being introduced by his Evaluator Ray gave his Project 7 speech – Look for the Honey, extolling the benefits of unprocessed honey. Ann Carver working on her Advanced Manual on Interpersonal Communication undertook some role play with Karen to show how to Diffuse Verbal Criticism with some good points on how to address such situations.
After the voting we broke for our network break giving all time to mingle and chat.
We returned to the evaluations given by Brent Crouch and Elena Grigorieva. Both worked through the 3 things they liked, 2 areas for improvement and 1 thing to take away. Both emphasised the need to use the stage rather than be fixed in one spot.
With the good advice still being considered it fell to Keith to lead the Table Topics picking on the five senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch, and it was good to see all three guests get into the spirit of the event.
A general discussion followed on the way the session was run and tips on dealing with the questions.
Karen now returned to the lectern to give her Grammarian's report highlighting several good examples of language and was pleased to note there were few examples of filler words.
Michael John Smithson followed as General Evaluator.
The meeting was now almost over. Keith Oliver gave the club business drawing attention to work by club members with the Prince's Trust, and reminding members of the forthcoming Division Contest and the Club Committee meeting.
Michael John gave out the awards before asking our guests how they had found the meeting.
Best Speaker – Ray Adams
Best Evaluator - Elena Grigorieva
Best Table Topics – Steve Surridge (guest)