U3A in London Update for the Easter Break

This information was published on: April 03, 2023

The next Update will be sent to you just before the Summer Term which begins on 24 April.

Have a wonderful break and enjoy any festivities you may be celebrating.

For your information

The next term runs from 24 April to 14 July.
The Autumn term will run from 18 September to 8 December 2023.  Next year, the Spring term starts on 8 January 2024 to Thursday 28 March 2024 and the Summer term from 29 April 2024 to 19 July 2024.  Bank holidays are Monday 6 May and 27 May.

Monday Morning Talks

The provisional list of Talks for the Summer is on the website.

Membership fees for 2023-4

These will be kept low at £45 (for the whole year).  This is possible because we currently have a healthy income from our investments, and we wish to help members with the cost of living.

The New Executive Committee

for 2023-4 is listed below.  The Officers were chosen by the newly elected committee members at their first meeting last Friday.  The new Committee is:

Officers: Hazelanne Lewis, Chair; Richard Arthur, Vice Chair; Anthony Sober, Treasurer; Ruth Freeman, Company Secretary.

The other committee members are Steven Barry, David Gigi, David Iwi, Gail Levy, Marie Ange King, Gill Korgaonkar, Shafeeq Siddiqui, Richard Sisson, Barbara Stevens and Peggy Wylie.

From Hazelanne Lewis

Hello, I am Hazelanne Lewis, your new Chair.  Gilli Varfidis did a magnificent job stepping in at a difficult time in February 2022 and steering us through the year. She will be a hard act to follow.  Gilli, thank you for your work, thoughtfulness and forward planning. We were lucky to have you.

We shall endeavour to have our pictures taken and put up in the Common Room and on the website so that you can identify us when you see us.

From Amalia Michaels

I would like to congratulate Hazelanne on her appointment and wish her a happy and fulfilling year. Our U3A has been blessed during our 40 years of existence with the most dedicated and hard-working “chair-people”.  Hazelanne is certainly in that category and has already shown us how efficient she has been as our Company Secretary.  

I would also like to add to her tribute to Gilli.  I have worked closely with Gilli over the past year and she has been the nearest thing to a ‘superwoman’ I have ever met.  In addition, she is kind and thoughtful and highly efficient – nothing is too much trouble for her. I believe she will continue to be our “Zoom Queen”, manage the weekly timetable, the Monday talks – and more – and I will continue to work with her for as long as I am able.

Date Correction

The Drama Group intends to put on its first live performance since the pandemic, in room 2.21 on Thursday May 4th at 11:00.  We will present a light programme lasting about 50 minutes, featuring Catherine Osborn’s adaption of The Pot of Gold, by Roman playwright Plautus, and a few other pieces.

Common Room

We have had comments that the milk sachets are difficult to open and cause spillage. There are now scissors in the box where the sachets are kept so there should be no further problem with that.

Calling all Coordinators (from Shafeeq Siddiqui)

We have installed a new operating system that should make using our IT equipment simpler and easier to use – and to encourage hybrid classes. If you would like training on how to use the new equipment, please contact Shafeeq Siddiqui.

Shafeeq would like to arrange some group training over the Easter Break. Hopefully using the equipment will be easy next term.  He adds that if coordinators wish to continue with the old desktop computers for PowerPoint, please let him know as we wish to remove them to avoid the clutter.  It’s ok for you to continue with amplifiers and external speakers as that will remain unchanged.

From Naomi Stuart (Fire Marshall)

Please do not remove fire drill notices and exit routes, as well as room seating plans, from the door or the notice board near the door in each room. 

These instructions have been updated and it is essential for our members’ safety that they are in these places to ensure the swiftest exit.


From John Satchwell  

Ukulele for You’ will resume after the Easter break at 15.10 in Room 2.26.

From Maxine Jason

who runs an art class on Mondays.  Please remember to bring to the office any images/photos from magazines etc which could be used for our art class.

From Ruth Freeman

I would be happy to offer a ‘drop-in’ and ‘self-help’ class for iPad and iPhone users in the Summer term.  It would be on Thursdays from 15.10 -16.10 in room 1.26. There are some exciting new classes coming!  The details will be available in our next Update.

The 2023 Summer Break Programme

We plan to hold 2 morning lectures and one 4pm lecture each weekday from 7 – 31 August, including a 2-day workshop on The Short Story. Lectures will be given on zoom, though some will be delivered from the Town Hall, and it will be possible to listen to lectures from room 2.21. The programme details may change before the Summer. We welcome more contributions.

An Important Reminder

Remember that if you would like to contribute in any way to the weekly Update, you should be contacting Alan Milward who has volunteered to take over from Amalia in compiling it.  Thank you.

Linda Shannon – a tribute from the Rose Playhouse.

Linda was a stalwart of The Rose Playhouse for many years, involving herself in every aspect of our work. In addition to her many varied activities Linda also served on the Friends’ Committee for many years and in that capacity she recently attended Board meetings as the Friends’ Liaison Officer and also edited our newsletter. In January she participated in a recording session for the Walking Trail. She also revelled in the contacts she made with students from South Bank University. Her contribution to the Events team, helping to run the programme of webinars, was especially valued. Linda’s Alleyn Walks tours were highly informative and well researched. She was a member of the Rose’s Tudor Dance Group.  Our Readathon was Linda’s idea and will not be the same without her. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Note: A new member, Jane Green, is very keen to take on Linda’s class next term and is well qualified to do so – BUT she wants it to be “live”, not Zoom.  She can’t do Wednesday morning and wants to hold a class at 10.30 – 11.30 on a Tuesday. We wondered if any of the members of Linda’s class would like the change of time and place?  Several of them have already said they would be happy with the new arrangement and so we are going to ask Jane to go ahead.

Book Sale

Keats Library, Keats Grove, NW3 (a charity we support) will be having a book sale from 10am-5pm on Saturday, 15 April 2023.

A volunteering Opportunity from Julia Dixon (Project Manager of Doorstep Library)

My parents are active U3A members, so I wanted to get in touch about Doorstep Library – a community-focused charity dedicated to bringing the gift of books and the joy of reading into the homes of children and families who need our support. We visit families across London and have a project 15 minutes’ walk from the U3A offices that we run on Tuesdays. We are looking for volunteers to join our wonderful team and we were hoping you might be able to help us spread the word. If this is of interest, please get in touch.

Early bird tickets at Kiln Theatre

Kiln Theatre has allocated £10 early bird tickets for Retrograde on the following dates: Thu 20 – Wed 26 April.  You can also get £5 off all seat bands for performances on the following dates: Thu 27 April – Sat 6 May. 

Retrograde is an award-winning explosive new play.  Aspiring actor Sidney Poitier is offered a lucrative contract that could make him a superstar. But what is he willing to sacrifice? Set in the Golden Age of Hollywood.


The u3a Spring Charity Bridge Festival 22-26 May 2023, will soon be here. Registration is open until 14th May.

To make you smile

From Anthony Abbey – some fun

A man goes into  a pet shop and asks the owner: ‘Do you sell flies?  And the owner angrily said, “Of course we don’t we’re a pet shop!”

And the man replied, “Well there’s some in your front window!”

Best wishes from the team

Gilli Vafidis Monday talks and Zoom Queen
And Richard.