2017 – February Report

Chairman’s Welcome Party – February Report by Dave Stanway


February 8th saw club members gather at the Langstone Hotel to welcome the new club chairman, Trevor Slydell, and his wife Janice, with drinks, nibbles and two guest speakers. Firstly a presentation from Lucinda Spraggs on her trip to Mount Kilimanjaro with the charity Childreach International, which was financially supported with a donation from the club.

She recounted for members details of her June 2016 adventure to the summit of Kilimanjaro, a dormant volcano in Tanzania, and the highest mountain in Africa, rising to around 5900 metres above sea level. She told us of her experiences from the six days climbing the Macheme Route to the ‘Roof of Africa’ including days when she awoke surrounded by clouds high on the mountain side, giving the air a damp feel, with an ever present danger of altitude sickness.

She gave us some examples of how the money she raised helped those that Childreach support, for example £50 provides 20 mothers with maternal healthcare, £10 helps 188 children develop IT skills.

Our second guest speaker was the Michael Cheshire MBE, Commanding Officer of HMS Victory, Lord Nelson’s flagship during the battle of Trafalgar. Mike entertained us with an enlightening presentation about Lady Emma Hamilton, asking if she were a Heroin or Survivor. We heard stories of Lady Hamiltons troubled childhood, leading to her travelling to London at the age of 12 where she worked as a model and dancer before forming various relationships with aristocracy and titled gents before meeting Lord Nelson, the rest, as they say is history.

Membership were saddened by the news of the passing of one of our founder members, Paul Wilkins sadly passed away. Paul was club chairman back in 1968, some 4 years into his membership with Hayling Island Businessmens Club, he continued to support the club at every opportunity even after his membership ended. In 2014 Paul was a guest speaker at the 50th Anniversary celebrations & Chairmans Welcome Party, and more recently was a guest at one of our afternoon lunches.

Mid February HIBC proudly presented an evening with international singing star Janelle Ogley and her husband, former royal pianist Neil. A tribute to the greatest songs composers and singers of all time quite simply an evening of superb quality that was not to be missed. On the 10th and 11th February 2017 the Station Theatre hosted the spectacular show. The audience were treated to a variety of well-known renditions from Gershwin, right through to Dolly Parton, stopping in the middle with a medley of hits from 70’s pop group Queen appropriately providing a link to Neils stories of his time entertaining her Majesty the Queen and other members of the royal family aboard the royal Yacht during his time as a member of the Royal Marine band.

Club members are making preparations towards the summer annual fund raising event at Northney Farm, the BBQ sees the return of the ABBA tribute band by popular demand on the 8th July. Many hours of planning and organisation go into making this a night not to be missed, tickets will be available later in the year. Attraction include not only live music, but our regular DJ keeps party goers in the mood whist they enjoy stalls, games and of course a licenced bar. Typical BBQ food is a major highlight of the event, including a huge hog roast.

A great deal of hard work is envisaged for the coming year, but with the help and generosity of the Island community and businesses a very successful year is in prospect.

We are currently looking for new members. The club name can be a little misleading as it is not necessary to be a Businessman to join. Anyone with time and the interest to be part of a club with the Ethos of helping the less fortunate on Hayling Island can apply for membership. In addition to aiding this worthwhile cause through the planning and arranging of fund raising events, there are member social gatherings throughout the year. The combination of these activities enables members to build close relationships, and find friends for life. For further information please email recruitment@hibc.org.uk  contact any club member.