Latest news from STONE & DISTRICT U3A



The Discovery Award group, which takes up challenges based on the Duke of Edinburgh scheme but for the over 50s, recently gathered to celebrate a major landmark . A bottle of bubbly was opened to note the very first Gold Awards to be gained locally. Hearty congratulations are due to members Brian Astbury, Rosemary Astbury, Barbara Bourne, Annabel Evans and Helen Pemberton—a great achievement! Challenges undertaken included walking part of the Great Wall of China, a study of listed buildings in North Staffs, helping with Brownies, organising the books at Katharine House charity shop and a study of the Olympic Games. To obtain more information about this thriving group, contact Mary Bull by e-mail on:


With the arrival of Springtime and, hopefully some warmer weather, several out-door groups will be resuming. The new Crown Green Bowling season will com-mence on Easter Monday, 28th March. Held in leafy Stonefield Park, there will be sessions from 10.00am-12noon, and 12noon-2.00pm on both Mondays and Tues-days through until the last week in September. All Groups, except the one that meets from 10.00am-12noon on Tuesdays, have room for new members. If you are interested in joining them give Rob Walker a ring on 01785 814791 for Mon-day mornings; Brian Hamnett on 01785 812581 for Monday lunchtime, or Mike Morrin for Tuesday lunchtime on 01785 813208.

The new season for the Petanque (Boules) group will start on Thursday 31st March at The Roebuck Inn in Hilderstone. The group, which meets each Thursday after-noon from 2.00-4.00pm, currently has vacancies. Anyone who would like to learn to play, or who already plays and just wishes to have a pleasant afternoon, please ring John Townsley on 01785 814471.


To complete a trio of skilful sports, Croquet will start on Wednesday 27th April at Stone Cricket Ground on Lichfield Road. Meetings begin at 10.00am and run until 1.00pm. To obtain more information and/or to register your interest, ring group leaders Val or Des Robinson on 01785 616043.



If quieter, thoughtful pursuits are more your cup of tea, the following might be worthy of attention. The Mindfulness Meditation group meets weekly on Tuesays from 2.00-4.00pm at Walton Community Centre. Group Leader, Mchael
McConville, explains that the Group will begin by focusing on becoming aware of their own bodies, cultivating focused attention and a kindly regard towards themselves through ‘Body Scan Meditation’ and how this can help with stress re-duction and the management of chronic pain. They will then go on to ‘Mindful-ness of Breathing’ before moving on to include meditations addressing awareness of others and towards the balancing of emotions. CDs will be provided to enable members of the Group to continue developing the skills at home. Michael antici-pates that it will take up to a year to introduce all of the material class members might find helpful in establishing their own meditation practices. If you are inter-ested in joining, Michael is available on 01785 251632.

For budding wordsmiths, the Scrabble group meets on the first and third Thurs-days of the month, from 10.00am-12noon, at the home of group leader, Jennifer Burrows. If you would like a friendly game, please ring her on 01785 813950



For anyone thinking of joining U3A with its numerous activities, then the monthly coffee morning is an ideal way of meeting committee members and find-ing out what is on offer. The new venue is Christ Church Centre in the middle of Stone and the next gathering will be on Friday, April 8th from 10.15 to 11.45. Thereafter, the date will be the first Friday of each month at the same times. There is no need to book, just come along. As alternative sources of information, you can contact Gywnyth Hart on 01782-633179 or visit the website,