Despite competing with the England v Iceland* game on the telly we still had a good sized audience although the ratio of women to men was highly in favour of the former.
Jessica Yuen was our Sergeant at Arms and after the usual preliminaries she welcomed Brent Crouch to the lectern as Toastmaster.
Brent welcomed the members and guests and explained the protocols of the meeting before introducing his team. Firstly he asked Sarah Stoneman to explain the timings and use of the lights, followed by Tricia Jones who was our Grammarian for the evening. Tricia advised she would be looking for anything she thought was lovely. She also gave the word for the evening “Rapport” meaning a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other's feelings or ideas and communicate well.
Finally he asked Steph Norman to lead the warm up. Steph asked everyone to give their interpretation of unity. Ideas included family, no conflict, community, harmony, love, respect and great rapport.
Brent now introduced our speakers. Claire Lay started with her Project 2 speech “Teenage parties” comparing her own 15th birthday party with those of her daughters. Wendy Benson followed with a goodwill speech from the Public Relations manual entitled “Choice, confidence and Eleanor Roosevelt”, describing her own life and how Toastmasters had helped her. Finally Ann Carver spoke of her experiences in “To love no matter what” from the Storytelling manual.
We were well on time so we enjoyed a longer than usual networking break, before Jessica called us back to resume the meeting.
We started with the evaluations given by Amonn Al-Mahrouq, Carolyn Barber and Sandra Rampton respectively.
Sarah Waters was our Table Topics Master with some random questions. Jamie (guest) spoke on his memories of the Queen’s silver jubilee, Gus (guest) followed with being part of a team, while Keith Oliver explained who was his best boss. Jessica Yuen was asked who she would pick as a doubles partner for tennis, Ann Carver grappled why we should support the England football team, while Sarah Stoneman was asked to describe her favourite book or tv programme.
Brent now called Tricia back to give her Grammarian’s report and she highlighted some phrases she particularly liked.
Finally Keith Oliver gave the General Evaluation.
It only remained for Wendy Benson to give the club business and to hand out the awards before closing the meeting.
Best Speaker – Wendy Benson
Best Evaluator – Sandra Rampton (Arun Speakers)
Best Table Topics – Gus
*as England lost 2-1 to Iceland those who missed the meeting probably regretted their choice.