March – April 2023

Please see our home page for details of our monthly meetings

The meeting this month had an amazing turnout and arguably one of the most fascinating speakers we have ever had. On the surface of it learning about typefaces sounds vaguely interesting. Usually I shun topics related to marketing and how it is designed to capture and influence us into consuming. A friend of mine gave a talk at an activism event long before Covid about how most of us can identify more corporate logos than we can name native trees and plants, including me. This is still true even after completing an apprenticeship in Horticulture and working as a gardener – I become quite upset thinking about it. So I admit that at first I didn’t pay much attention. Quite quickly though, Sarah Hyndman’s presentation and interactive games were too fun to resist, and I started joining in with my sisters clear enthusiasm. I remembered that life is (or ought to be in my opinion) largeIy about gaining knowledge and discovering who we and other people are. Upon reflection I realised that, despite my personal protestations, there is no escaping the act of consuming and the research that Sarah does can, and likely is, informing the work of more sustainable companies to help us make better choices that are friendlier to the planet. I hope everyone in attendance would agree when I say that Sarah delivered an utterly fantastic talk. She could have talked for several more hours and still had me engaged. (Later, behind the scenes, there was a little chat about potentially inviting Sarah back for a part two – fingers crossed, like the lottery logo).

Looking ahead to 6th April we will be hearing the story of Bella Gonshorovitz and how she made a journey to creating sustainable fashion (see poster).

Group News

The book for March is ‘The Pleasure of Eliza Lynch‘, by Anne Enright. The book group meet on the third Tuesday, which is the 21st this month. Due to my poor time keeping at getting the blog out this month, please see the group page for details on how to join the book group to read the book for April.

The BST Walking group is starting up again on Friday the 31st. Kicking off the season will be a walk along Rotherhithe Street. Please see the group page for further details and how to join.

Knitting and Stitching continue to meet on a semi regular basis. They are working on a yarn bomb project for the King’s Coronation in May (pics to come). Please email for date and time of next session and to find out how to join.

The new fitness group is well established now with members meeting every week for jogging and swimming. More details, including a timetable, to come. Please email to find out how to join.

DBWI Campaign News

A number of members met up on Saturday the 4th of March to attend the Million Women Rise march, which links with the NFWI’s ‘No More Violence Against Women’ campaign. It was a fun time marching from Selfridges to Trafalgar Square for a very crucial issue. Afterwards we socialised as sisters in The Chandos pub upstairs in the restaurant bar. If you are interested in getting involved with future campaigning please contact

The next campaign activity that Fiona will be attending is on 1st April for a mass lobby for Warm this Winter. See this link for info and contact her if you are able to join her at Shoreditch Town Hall at 10am.

Community News

St Peter’s Church, De Beauvoir are continuing to provide a safe and warm place to go on Wednesdays, between 10am and 4pm. Anyone is invited to attend for bingo, crafts (volunteers required), soup and other refreshments, and a film for the little ones in the afternoon. please email if you are available to volunteer.

We are still accepting donations of toiletries and children’s toys for Solace. Email us to find out where to bring any donations you can provide.

Middlesex Federation Public Affairs News

(The following is a selection of what is going on nationally and the information is copied directly from a Public Affairs Digest email):

– The 2022/23 resolution selection result is in – Clean Rivers for people and wildlife. The proposal wording is as follows:

Water quality in our rivers is shameful. Legally, designated bathing waters must be regularly monitored for pollution. The NFWI urges its members, the wider public, local authorities and Government to make, support and promote applications for official designated bathing sites on appropriate stretches of rivers in their area. This will be as instrumental to the clean up of rivers as it has been for water quality improvement at coastal beaches.

Members can attend a webinar discussion on Wednesday 12th April at 7pm if they are interested in hearing more about this.  You need to register interest on MyWI so email us if you need guidance on how to access this resource.

An International Women’s Day survey conducted by the NFWI found out that women are still penalised in the workplace for caring responsibilities.  Figures from the survey show that WI members overwhelmingly believe that caring responsibilities continue to hamper women’s careers, and that more needs to be done to achieve true equality. Key points are:

  • 90 per cent of respondents believe that more needs to be done for men and women to be equal in society.
  • 84 per cent of respondents agreed that women have more choices than ever.
  • 87 per cent of respondents believe a more equal society between men and women would be better for the economy.

-The WI joins call for more research into impact of plastic on health

In February, the WI paid a visit to 10 Downing Street, joining plastics campaigners to deliver a petition to government. The petition calls for further research to study the effects of plastic on human health and has been signed by over 100,000 people- including WI members.  The campaign has been backed by over 80 scientists, campaigners and MPs, and calls on the government to ringfence a £15 million Plastic Health Impact Research Fund. The petition was organised by the plastics campaign group Common Seas, whose blood-testing research found plastics in human blood for the first time. The study found that nearly 80% of those tested had plastic in their blood.
There is little to no research on the short and long-term consequences of having microplastics in our bodies. With global plastic production on course to double by 2030, we urgently need research to understand the potential health impacts of plastic on our health.

Other News

The Lady Denman Cup annual writing competition is open for entries here. WI members are invited to write a letter explaining how the WI has influenced or impacted them as an individual, and how it has helped them become the woman they are today. Members should consider how their letter would inspire other women and girls and encourage them to join the WI. Entries must be no more than 500 words; the letter can either be left open or addressed to a particular individual.

Sunday 2nd April is World Autism Awareness Day.

Friday 7th April is World Health Day.

We look forward to seeing you at our 6th April meeting. As always stay well and safe. Many blessings to you all.