October Newsletter

Dear Members,
After a very successful visit to Perros-Guirec this year followed by our quiz, photographic competition and barbecue, your  committee have been planning the programme for the visit of the French to Teignmouth in 2016, and the social programme up to the New Year lunch. Starting with the programme in May, when the French arrive, we can now give you the broad arrangements of the visit. Clearly, as the programme is detailed with times etc, there may be some minor changes.
2016 French Visit Programme
Thursday 5th May
Guests arrive late evening

Friday 6th May
We take the boat from Totnes to Dartmouth with picnic lunch and  explore Dartmouth. We need to check the exact times with the boat operators when the information is available in the New Year.
During the evening we will meet in groups for a meal. This  proved to be very successful in 2014 when the French were with us, and in 2015 when we visited Perros-Guirec.

Saturday 7th May
The first activity will be a Civic Reception at Bitton House, followed by a visit  to Coleton Fishacre. This will include a tour of house and garden, with  lunch (picnic or snack from restaurant). There are facilities for a picnic should it rain. Further details will  be given later.
During the evening we will hold the Formal Dinner at the Langstone Cliff Hotel.  We did enjoy the Breton Dancing at the Perros-Guirec dinner this year and we are developing some ideas for a folk group to entertain us.

Sunday 8th  May
This basically a free day with host families, though it might be a good idea to have an ‘opt in’ activity for those who prefer to be with a group. Some ideas would involve a visit to TAAG  followed by a  trip on the ferry and walk around Shaldon etc. There will be  an international art exhibition at  TAAG which includes the work of French and local artists.
The last time the French were with us, we had an early  evening farewell dinner at  the Smugglers with the coach picking up in its car park. The service was quick and dealt with a large number efficiently. We have arranged to go there again.

Website
There has been an interesting discussion at our committee meetings regarding the desirability of a website. In the past the association has had a website which lapsed and as such it was a waste of the association’s resources. However, times move on and the future must be that all thriving organisations have a website. The sort of information which could be made available would include our photographs and our committee minutes, most of which should be available to the full membership. The committee will need a confidential section. We would link with other French interest groups such as the French class at TAAG. A section for songs and poetry with links into YouTube etc would also add to its interest. News from PG could be included. It would be possible in the long term for the French directly to access our site and to send us their own   information. At the moment our information can be likened to an iceberg – nine tenths is not visible. Long standing members in particular, have a stack of current and historical information which never sees the light of day. Where do we find a group photo from 5 years ago? It may exist somewhere – but it  should be indexed in a website. Over the years we have been given many books by the French. A website could give index and location information and make them accessible to all. The committee have agreed a budget and Andy is starting to rough out the website, and  needs some photos. If you have any images they think might be useful on the website, please let Andy have them. Primarily he is  looking for happy people enjoying themselves, or good scenic shots of either here or Perros. Probably best if you just send them to his email address or they could use Dropbox or similar, or even just bring them along on a USB stick to the wine-tasting evening.
Dates of next meetings
It was decided that the date of the AGM would be Friday November 13th 2015 at the Heritage Centre, Teignmouth.

Social Events Programme

Wine Tasting Evening
Our next social event  on 21st November (Saturday) at the Heritage Centre at 730pm, will be a wine- tasting evening, with a talk by Andy describing our local wine production. There will also be some nibbles. The cost will be £10 each for members and £12 each for non members. The last date of ticket purchase will be at the AGM on November 13th. Kate has prepared a poster enclosed with this newsletter.

The New Year Lunch
The New Year Lunch will be held at the Castle Inn Holcombe on January 3rd. 12.30 pm for 1pm. Menu and prices to follow.