Tadley & District


Welcome to the Tadley & District U3A

The U3A (University of the Third Age) is a self-help organisation offering people who are no longer in full-time employment opportunities to share their life-long knowledge, skills and experience with like-minded people in a wide range of interest groups. This is a two-way process with all who want to learn having the opportunity to help with the teaching. Learning is carried out in an informal atmosphere, free of the stress of exams, with the emphasis purely on fun and friendship. "If it's not fun, it's not U3A".

Regular monthly, outside speaker meetings are held on the 3rd Thursday in the month from 10:45-1pm at Tadley Community Centre, New Church Road. These are always very informative and often very amusing and cover a wide-ranging variety of topics. Group Leaders are in attendance so making it easier for everyone to see what groups are on offer. Everyone can catch up with the latest new groups and meet with and make new friends. Membership provides access to all groups plus a regular U3A magazine. A nominal charge is made for attendance at all groups as a contribution to hall hire and other running costs etc...

Tadley & District U3A was officially founded in March 2012 and I am now pleased to announce that as of June 2014 we have passed a significant milestone by having an unbelievable 507 members.

We now have 44 group activities and we encourage our members to suggest or volunteer to run new groups. If you are interested in starting up any group then please contact Mike (Group Liaison) via the Contact page.

At our May meeting our speaker was Neville Lyons, a decendant of the famous Joe Lyons from the Lyons tea shops fame. J. Lyons & Co. was set up in 1887 to provide catering at exhibitions and Royal Garden Parties - at one time catering for an amazing 15,000 guests!!! Joe Lyons saw the opportunity to cater for the public and so in 1894 opened the first Lyons tea shop at 213 Piccadilly, London, the first of 250 countrywide. Initially the waitresses had been called a "Gladys" but after 1924 the name "Nippy" was adopted. These young, efficient women who nipped around the tea shops serving their customers in their smart uniforms and matching headwear, soon became a national icon.

Lyons Corner Houses set a new standard for restaurant design, range of offerings, entertainment and sheer size. During WWII the company did not rest and was involved with setting up the Catering Corps, supplying 3.5million “compo-rations” and producing parcels for the Red Cross. Continuing to use their in-house skills Lyons also built the first commercial electronic computer in 1951 (LEO – Lyons Electronic Office). In 1954 Lyons formed LEO Computers Ltd to market and sell LEO computer systems. Over time Leo Computer merged with English Electric, then ICT, then ICL…and ultimately Fujitsu.

In May our first get-together for new members proved to be a success, so much so that another such event is being planned for later in the year. It is intended that this will become a regular event.

Our AGM will be held at our next monthly meeting on Thursday 19th June 2014 between 12-1pm. There will be a speaker beforehand at 10:45am when first-time visitors are welcome but of course only members will be allowed to stay for the AGM.