Gin and Vice in Georgian London

Debauchery in De Beauvoir? For our September meeting we enjoyed a hugely entertaining and informative talk from Eleanor Bloom about Georgian London and the culture of gin houses and the darker side of the East End. How the madness associated with gin was due to a blight on the grain and why they really wore those stupendous wigs. We also enjoyed some delicious gin cocktails and a lemon and cucumber cake with gin icing.

Plus Jessie from Solace Women’s Aid told us more about the work they do with women and children fleeing domestic violence and explained how our monthly donations are used in the welcome packs they give every family arriving at the refuges they run across London

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Houses of Parliament Visit with Meg Hillier

After meeting our Chair at the Party in the Park 2015, MP for Hackney South & Shoreditch Meg Hillier came to talk at one of our meetings about what its like to be an MP and a woman in parliament.  More recently a few of us met her again on a tour of the Houses of Parliament.  It was such a privilege to meet her there one evening and see what goes on behind the scenes in the beautiful Palace of Westminster.

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To say thank you we took some of our Made in De Beauvoir goodies to Meg’s surgery for her to share with her staff:

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The Flower and Produce Show

The De Beauvoir Flower and Produce Show (and Dog Show) has been taking place every year since 1979 (at least).

This year, for the first time, WE are jointly organising the show with De Beauvoir Gardeners and this means that we need some help and volunteers. We are not only running the cake stall (domestic delights) but helping with all aspects of the show which is a really lovely annual event – a village style show in the heart of London. It celebrates this corner of Hackney’s growing, creative and dog owning communities and is promoted through local schools to encourage children to bake, draw, grow and make – we even have cup cake decorating on the day.

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As well as the usual flower, produce, baking and preserve categories there are new (WI) craft entries as follows:

  • For children – A glove puppet made from a sock

and for everyone:

  • Greeting card in any medium (e.g. sewn, painting, collage, photograph, crafting)
  • A floral tea or egg cosy, stitched, knitted or crocheted
  • Homemade piece of jewellery (brooch, necklace, bracelet or ring) on a garden theme

To make this year a success we really need your help in lots of ways:

  • Volunteers to help for a couple of hours on a stall.
  • Volunteers to help with setting up or clearing up. This includes husbands and burley teenagers to help with the heavy work of setting up gazebos, carrying books and tables – either in the morning or at the end (or both).
  • As many individual entries in all categories as possible (we are not doing WI group entries this year) again encourage neighbours, relatives and children to enter too. CLICK HERE to see all the categories so you can start planning your entries now.
  • Contributions of nice items for the tombola (bring items to the August and September meetings).
  • Whole cakes and savouries to sell on the day.
  • Bring your dog along and consider entering the floral fancy dress category.
  • Promote the show on facebook or twitter using the links on this page.
  • Put a poster up.

We will have sign-up sheets and be available for questions at the August social where we will also distribute posters and leaflets for those who have already signed up for leaflet distribution.

 

The Summer Show

blue_posterAs we head towards September and think about putting away those flip flops there’s still plenty of De Beauvoir activity to look forward to. In particular the fabulous De Beauvoir Gardener’s Flower and Produce Show, complete with Dog Show. Its on Sunday September 13th and the De Beauvoir WI are manning the Domestic Delights stall. Once again we are looking for volunteers to help run the stall as well as donations for sale such as cakes (complete cakes go down well), jams and chutneys, breads, savouries, plus your wonderful crafts such as knitting, sewing etc. If you can help or contribute please email us to let us know.

Please come to the event itself, bring friends and family and enter as many categories in the show as possible. We are hoping that many of you will enter – but do also encourage family and children to enter for their own glory – especially as all the children win prizes! There are prizes for home grown produce (fruit and veg), flowers, flower arranging, art and photography, cakes, breads and preserves – the full list of categories and information on pre-registering can be found HERE.

Lastly bring your pooches for the fun dog show which has become a bit of a De Beauvoir institution – but enter early as the limit is 50 dogs (that means baking 500 dog biscuits for the entrants)!