Foundation

The West End comes to Banbury

Last Saturday, to celebrate the start of a new Rotary year, 200 people packed the theatre at Tudor Hall School, and witnessed a “West End” concert. Simon Adkins (originally from Banbury and currently the resident choreographer of 42nd St in the West End), Alison Dormer & Clare Rickard accompanied by Rob Cousins performed a wide and varied range of songs from the Musicals, many of which the three have performed in during their time as Musical Theatre professionals.

Newly installed President of Banbury Rotary Club, Alan Wolstencroft, who was instrumental (pardon the pun) in setting the concert up stole a line from Jersey Boys (Simon was in the original West End cast) and said “Oh What a Night”!

All four performers donated their time, appearance fee and expenses to support Banbury Rotary Club’s concert which was raising funds for Alan’s Africa Sierra Leone schools projects and Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign. Simon said “it was great to be back in Banbury, seeing family and friends, performing with three great people and helping Alan & Rotary raise funds for two great causes”.

Alan said “Rotary’s theme this year is “Rotary – Making A Difference”. The concert was a great way to start my year as President and I owe an immense debt of gratitude to the four professionals for putting on such a great show, and giving freely of their time, and I must also acknowledge the wonderful support we received from Tudor Hall School and the local businesses who donated items for the raffle and auction”.

PHOTO: From left to right: Alan Wolstencroft, Clare Rickard, Alison Dormer, Simon Adkins and seated Rob Cousins

Warriner Practice Interviews 2017

The final part of the Practice Interview Programme (PIP) conducted by Club this year was concluded on Wednesdays 5th July when 5 students from the Warriner School were interviewed for a second time as part of the competition to find the student who most impressed.  All 5 students were worthy of their second interview, and each performed well.

In the end the 3 interviewers (Ashley and Rosemary Bedding, and Nigel Randall) easily agreed that Bethany Parish came across as the most impressive student, mainly because she showed that she was able to take full part in her school education whilst following her love of both stage and technical aspects of the theatre in school and AmDram productions, girl guiding and maintaining a social life whilst at the same time juggling her complex young carer duties for her single mum (who had mental and physical difficulties) and younger brother. In addition, she was already discussing with Oxford Brookes how she could study for a future career in the theatre whilst fulfilling her carer responsibilities. It was a very humbling experience speaking to her, more especially as she was only 15 years old.

My thanks go to all Rotarians and Friends of Club who volunteer to conduct the PIP interviews at BGN and the Warriner each year, and without whom this scheme would not be possible.  Older Club members may recall that the late Rotarian John Meeres imported PIP from his previous Club ‘up North’ over 12 years ago. Below is a recent email from the Careers Leader at the Warriner that will hopefully endorse why the programme remains so important:

Nigel,

I would like to formally thank you and your colleagues for your valuable contribution to the careers education of our new Year 11 students. The interviews are the final careers activity of the year, following work experience and an enrichment day, and I have received a resounding positive feedback from all students which I would like to pass on to you. 

Students commented that your team made them feel at ease and that they have developed a greater understanding about the purpose of an interview. This education is invaluable in terms of developing the confidence of young people to progress in the big wide world. Many students admitted to feeling very proud of themselves at have conducted themselves well and really appreciated the verbal and written feedback that was sensitively given. The certificates were well received and I don’t think we should underestimate their value either as there was a palpable sense of pride as students received them.

I framed the certificates for the finalists and these students gained a lot of respect from their peers who were pleasantly surprised that it was not ‘the expected’ finalists and that the ultimate winner was perhaps in their eyes now someone who has risen significantly in the whole school’s estimation.  Bethany burst in to tears when accepting the news she had won and if you and your colleagues look on the Warriner Facebook page for will see (as well as pictures) that the comments from her relatives are a pleasure to read. Her personal confidence will no doubt have received a significant boost. She no doubt has a fantastic future awaiting her.

Finally, my apologies for the Mock exams inconvenience: no one was more disappointed than myself at the problems it caused but thank you for the flexibility and patience demonstrated by your magnificent team. Your work is much appreciated by students, the wider Warriner community and myself. 

Yours sincerely, Nigel Smith, Careers Leader

A Night at the Musicals


“A Night at the Musicals”

featuring West End performers Simon Adkins & Alison Dormer

Saturday 8th July

7.30pm Tudor Hall School

Tickets  £10

Raising funds for

Banbury Rotary’s Sierra Leone Education Projects
&
Rotary’s End Polio Now Campaign

To book tickets click here for the Ticket Ordering Page

SIR CHARLES POLLARD QPM – MY PART IN POLICING : 40 MOMENTOUS YEARS THAT CHANGED THE UK

Sir Charles Pollard QPM – 40 Momentous Years that Changed the UK

7.00 pm for 7.45 on Friday 2 June 2017

Tudor Hall School, Wykham Park,

Banbury, OX16 9UR,

(with kind permission of the Headmistress, Wendy Griffiths).

Sir Charles Pollard has been an eminent figure in policing, both nationally and internationally, and still works in the Justice system today.  Retiring in 2002 from Thames Valley Police, the largest non-metropolitan police force in the country, he had earlier progressed through the middle police ranks in London and Sussex during one of the most turbulent periods of recent history, during which time he was personally involved in many of the key policing events:.

Sir Charles began his career at the age of 19 in 1964 as a constable in the Metropolitan Police and was selected for the ‘fast-track promotion course’ at Bramshill Police College. From there he took an LLB at the University of Bristol. Through the 1970s and 1980s he pursued an eventful and successful policing career in London and Sussex and in 1991 was appointed Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police, covering 3 counties with a population of over 2.5 million.

The talk will include, among other things, his personal experiences of the policing of public disorder, crime and terrorism.  We look forward to welcoming Rotarians, local Parishioners and the General Public.

Tickets – Talk only £10.00

Talk and drinks reception hosted by Sir Charles £20.00

To book tickets click here – Ticket Ordering Page

To view video trailer  click here – Video Trailer

 

Mary wins Rotary District 1090 Young musician Finals.

Mary Eckert, runner-up in the Banbury Young Musician senior singing section went one better in the District Finals last Saturday, winning the competition and securing a place in the forthcoming regional finals to be held at the end of March.
The Tudor Hall student impressed the judges with her virtuosity by singing “Vedrai Carino” by Mozart, “Somewhere” from Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story (the piece she sang at one of this month’s Purple4Polio Concerts at St Mary’s Church Banbury) and “Per La Gloria D’Adorarvi” by Giovanni Bononcini.

Mary Wins District Finals

Mary wins Rotary District 1090 Young musician Finals.

Mary Eckert, runner-up in the Banbury Young Musician senior singing section went one better in the District Finals last Saturday, winning the competition and securing a place in the forthcoming regional finals to be held at the end of March.
The Tudor Hall student impressed the judges with her virtuosity by singing “Vedrai Carino” by Mozart, “Somewhere” from Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story (the piece she sang at one of this month’s Purple4Polio Concerts at St Mary’s Church Banbury) and “Per La Gloria D’Adorarvi” by Giovanni Bononcini.

Purple4Polio

crocusesPurple4Polio Update

In spring 2014 and 2015 we hosted collaborative “Crocus Concerts” involving all local secondary schools. In each of these years our Rotary Club worked together with the schools to plant some 6,000 crocus bulbs and to send £5,000 to Rotary Foundation, where our donation was tripled by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In each of the first two years of the project we raised sufficient funds to immunise 45,000 children.

Last autumn we initiated work on the third year of our five-year local contribution to this worldwide effort. Under the guidance of John Bennett & Ron Barnett and with the support of Cherwell District Council, Banbury Town Council and Sanctuary Housing, secondary students, local primary school pupils and Rotarians planted an incredible 19,000/20,000 crocus bulbs! Although circumstances prevented a third series of collaborative crocus concerts, individual secondary and primary school fundraising efforts together with Rotary Club commitments have so far raised almost £2,500.  A concert at Broughton Church by the Oxford Male Voice Choir on Saturday 2nd July gave the Purple4Polio Campaign and this fourth year’s crocus projects a brilliant start – raising over £1,600. Many thanks to Alan, Ron and the Foundation Committee.

This coming year Rotary International in Britain and Ireland (RIBI) has decided to celebrate the centenary of Rotary Foundation by planting five million crocus corms throughout the United Kingdom to raise awareness of the fact that we are on the verge of a tremendous achievement. RIBI has established a partnership with the Royal Horticultural Society on this national project – PURPLE4POLIO. Each pack of 5,000 crocus corms purchased by local Clubs through the scheme costs £85. In June we ordered one pack so that each secondary school will again receive 500 corms to plant on your grounds – adding to the 1,000 they each received during the first two years of our local project. In July – after consultation with Cherwell District and Banbury Town Councils about further planting in public spaces this autumn and Whitley Stimpson’s generous sponsorship of a further pack, we ordered a further seven packs. In partnership with secondary schools, community groups and the councils involved John Bennett will be leading as many volunteer Rotarians as possible in the planting of 40,000 bulbs this autumn.

Also, Ron is repeating last year’s Primary Schools Project. Club has requested a District Grant of £300, enabling us to match-fund and order ten packs for Primary Schools. In addition to planting 500 corms each, secondary schools will again be participating in collaborative Crocus concerts in early spring 2017. Our PURPLE4POLIO Working Group will oversee our Club response to the RIBI/District Projects which coincide with the fourth year of our own local Crocus Projects.

Current state of Polio: Just two countries remain where polio is endemic. Internet links for further details: www.polioeradication.org and www.endpolio.org. Here are a couple of headline facts:

  • In 2015, a total of 74 cases of polio were reported in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the only two remaining polio endemic countries, down from 334 cases worldwide in 2014.
  • “We’ve come a long way since the establishment of the GPEI in 1988, from 125 polio-endemic countries to just two,” said Chris Maher, manager of WHO’s regional polio eradication unit in Amman, Jordan. “We are at the final frontier of eradication. A lot of work is still needed, but if we can stop polio transmission in Afghanistan and Pakistan by the close of 2016, the whole world will finally be free of wild poliovirus.”
  • Latest statistics on Wild Polio Virus: This year to date Afghanistan 5, Pakistan 11 (compared with totals in 2015 of 20 & 54 respectively).

 

Oxford Male Voice Choir Concert

Male Voice Choir

A capacity audience filled Broughton Church on the evening of Saturday 2nd July to be entertained by the Oxford Male Voice Choir and soloist Tavia Lewis.
Under the baton of Musical Director Helen Swift, the choir entertained us with a varied programme ranging from traditional Welsh songs such as ‘O Gymru’ and ‘Myfanwy’ to more modern pieces like ‘Unchained Melody’ and ‘Rhythm of Life’, which were all very much appreciated by the audience.

The evening also saw our very own Young Musician of the Year winner, Tavia Lewis, give excellent renditions of pieces ranging from Fauré’s ‘Pie Jesu’ to ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ from Les Miserables.

The Church Concert was followed by an impromptu performance in the Saye and Sele Arms much to the delight of all present.
The evening was a double success for as well as being a most enjoyable piece of musical entertainment, it also raised the magnificent sum of £1,500 for the End Polio Now Campaign.

AlansAfrica 10

AlansAfrica News 10In 8 weeks from a piece of wasteland to this!

Today it is the new 2 classroom block of the new Good News Pentecostal Community School, Waterloo, Freetown, Sierra Leone.

A huge thank you to the 2 sponsors of the project: Brethertons Solicitors and The Rotary Club of Woodstock & Kidlington 100 Club

All the desk & bench sets will be made on site and the blackboards fitted very soon.

Alan would like to express his sincere personal thanks, on behalf of the children, teachers and community in general for your fantastic support.

You have “made a real difference” to this small impoverished rural community.

Car Treasure Hunt

huntA number of us had fun today on a Treasure Hunt starting in Bloxham and finishing at the Masons Arms for a pleasant Sunday Lunch where any who had become lost could regain their dignity. The winner naturally was the President’s car which did have the advantage of having a four member International team from Brazil (Gabi), Wales (Peter) and even jolly old England (Ian & Pat).