STOKE FERRY & DISTRICT LADIES GROUP

Minutes of the meeting held on July 3rd
Mrs Armsby welcomed 15 members.
Apologies were received from Janet Burns & Audrey Hudson.
Minutes of the previous meeting were read & signed.
A birthday card was given to Hazel Hearne. There will be one needed in August.
Gillian Smith said that the mystery tour on August 7th had changed slightly, & will no longer include a cream tea. The cost is £28, & the coach will leave Stoke ferry at 9.30am, returning at approx 5.30pm.
The Sept meeting will be a jewellery workshop by Liz Murfitt.
ROTAS. Door/raffle Gillian Smith & Jenny Elsey
TEAS Janet Cooper & Hazel Hearne
VOT Wendy Quadling
A list of food required for the harvest supper in Oct, will be circulated in Sept, & Mrs Armsby reminded members to be on the lookout for possible speakers for the 2020 programme.
Mrs Armsby then introduced Roger Farmer, who is a conservation assistant at Oxburgh Hall, working for the National Trust. He began with a brief history of the hall which was built by the Bedingfield family in 1482. Over the years, it has suffered being ransacked, set fire to, & partially demolished, but survived until 1951, when mounting costs & taxes forced a sale to the Eagle Star Insurance Co. Not wishing to be responsible for a likely demolition, they offered to sell it back to the family for £5000. Luckily, three family members raised the money, & the hall was saved. In 1952 it was given to the National trust. Restoration of some items in the collection is done at the hall by conservators, but large items are packed in acid-free paper, & sent to specialist workshops. In 2016 a dormer window collapsed into the courtyard, & an intense survey was carried out. This resulted in a major restoration project to renew the roof, at a cost of £6 million pounds. Free-standing scaffolding is necessary so as not to damage the building, but meanwhile, Oxburgh Hall will remain open, & the 350 volunteers who work there are still available to show visitors around. In spite of over 500 years of history, the Bedingfield family still live in the South East pavilion of the Hall. Mr Farmer was thanked for his very interesting talk by Anita Horgen.
The raffle was won by Sheila Smith & Joy Beckett.
The meeting ended at 9.30pm.
Claire Lankfer
(secretary)

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