Holiday season seemed to have come early as a small but select band of Toastmasters met for our first meeting in June. We were pleased to welcome Steven Hempkin who had travelled over from the Isle of Wight to try out the Toastmaster experience.
Keith Oliver opened the meeting and went through the usual toilets. phone and fire escape information before welcoming Michael John Smithson to the lectern as Toastmaster for the evening. Michael John set out the benefits of Toastmasters for our guest and new members, highlighting some of the awards he had achieved.
Michael John then called on Ann Carver as Time Keeper to explain the use of the lights and the need to keep to time. Next up was Wendy Benson who as Grammarian explained she was looking out for good and bad language. She also gave the word of the evening which was ‘paramount’ meaning of great significance.
With the preliminaries taken care of Michael John asked Ellie Zheleva to lead the warm up. Ellie asked who members would wish to be. Answers ranged from superman, professional footballers, Martin Luther King and most heartening people who had inspired members in the workplace.
The audience now settled back for the prepared speeches given by Ray Adams, giving his 10th speech, and Keith Oliver speaking from the Advanced Manual, the Entertaining Speaker.
Ray’s speech was “Five people you meet in Heaven”, highlighting lessons learned from others in life.
Keith gave a dramatic speech entitled “The Race to Save the Forrest Hall” relating the epic tale of the Lynmouth lifeboat which had to be hauled over Exmoor to be launched.
We broke for our network break, but on realising our guest had to leave early for his journey back to the Island Michael John agreed to resume and re-arrange the agenda.
We therefore started with Table Topics with Karen Chapman setting the task of selling holidays to destinations of her choosing, including Kenya, Spain, Ibiza, Fermanagh and Antarctica amongst others with much opportunity for humour and laughter.
We returned to the evaluations of the speeches given by Ann Carver and Simon Roberts. Both emphasised the strengths of the two speakers and highlighted possible areas for improvement.
Michael John next called on Wendy to give her Grammarian’s report when she commented upon the low level of filler words and good use of expressive language with much picture painting in the speeches and Table Topics, The word of the evening had been used several times during the meeting.
Simon now returned to the lectern to give his Table Topics evaluation with much encouragement for the various speakers with hints and tips of what they did well and areas for improvement.
It finally fell to Ray to give the General Evaluator’s report, highlighting how everyone had pitched in to make another successful evening.
Keith Oliver as President gave the club business, reminding members the next meeting was the club AGM, and that Brent ad Wendy would be giving advice on evaluations.
Michael John closed the meeting but not before handing out the awards and in particular the No 10 ribbon to Ray for completing his Competent Communicator Manual.
Best Speaker: Ray Adams
Best Evaluator: Simon Roberts
Best Table Topics: Wendy Benson