Just before the Summer Solstice we enjoyed a brief taste of summer, but attendance was down a little possibly due to the England International on the telly. Notwithstanding that we were in for another enjoyable night as Brent Crouch, Sergeant at Arms, got us underway.
James Rolfe was Toastmaster and explained about Toastmasters, the protocols and changes to the agenda in an assured and professional manner. Pat Tunstall once again took us through the timings in the role of Timekeeper, while Steve Green explained the role of Grammarian and set the word of the evening as “Disconbobulate” meaning to confuse.
Cat Borrow took us through the warm up getting everyone to explain their name in a way that we could all remember. We had a Baker that couldn’t bake, a Tim and a Pat who associated their full names with being told off, and we will leave you to guess who was “Double Trouble”!
We swiftly moved on to the speeches with Jewels Carter giving her Number 10 speech - “The Oldest Profession”, telling us about telephone sales assistants and that good sales people are not a nuisance.
Martin Groom followed with a speech entitled Cyberspace - a quick romp through the internet with a question and answer session at the end. This was followed coincidentally, by Adrian Reed with “Stop the Madness!” calling on businesses to stop spending a fortune on ill-informed IT projects with little result.
Following the customary break we returned to the evaluations provided by Michelle Baker, George Wilkinson and Michael John Smithson. A common theme was the pacing of the speeches and thee benefits of the pause, as well as gestures.
After the Grammarian’s report, when Steve Green applauded the final two speakers on two technical speeches with little use of jargon, and pointed out examples of good use of language.
The meeting now moved to formal business as we turned to the election of the coming year’s committee. John Webber looked back over a successful year and commented on the attendance, Atmosphere and Activity. Attendance due to our high membership and well attended meetings , Atmosphere for the fun and welcoming manner of our meetings, and Activity for the range of speeches and educational workshops we had enjoyed. The financial report, membership report and education report similarly highlighted what a great year we had had in all sectors.
Nominations had been received for all the committee posts and the candidates were voted in en bloc. John Webber passed on the President’s ribbon to Tim Rampton who introduced himself and looked forward to another successful year, before John Tunstall fielded questions from the floor on a number of issues which members felt our efforts could be concentrated in the coming months.
It fell to Keith Oliver to give the General Evaluation and he emphasised the importance of the Sergeant at Arms in ensuring the smooth running of the meeting, in addition to the Toastmaster and Timekeeper.
Finally Tim Rampton gave out the awards. He also congratulated Elena Grigorieva on becoming our latest member.
Best Speaker - Adrian Reed
Best Evaluator - George Wilkinson
Most Innovative use of a role - Cat Borrow.