If you are a member of our U3A you can register via the Administration page.


(reserved for committee-approved announcements: routine announcements can be found further down the page.)


In accordance with our branch constitution any members who had not renewed since 31st August had their membership “lapsed” on 31st October when their grace period ended. If you are in this position and wish to renew please complete your application now.

Most of you will by now be aware of the changes to membership which came into effect in September and which have affected a number of our members. The changes to the membership system can be summarised in the document here.

2017 AGM

"Well, that's all over for another year!" Seriously though, that is not the way to think about the AGM. It should not be regarded as a formality, as a tiresome event that has to be held and the sooner it is over the better. It is an important event that ensures those that are looking after Higham and Rushden U3A, who are responsible for its week to week operation, are held to account. The Chairman gives his view of how things have gone over the year (you can find it here) and the Treasurer reports on the financial health of our organisation.

It is also a time for members to ask questions of your Committee. This year the meeting went well and I have to assume that people are pretty pleased and relaxed about how things are. No items were raised before the event, nothing proposed as an agenda item and no questions were asked of your Chairman or Treasurer following their reports. I would say: "do not be shy, do not hold back from asking questions". If you felt uncertain or unsure about asking a question from the floor during the meeting please approach me or a Committee member and ask your question on a one to one basis.

An Apology:

On behalf of myself and the Committee I wish to apologise to all members of Higham and Rushden U3A who do not use email or have internet access. Despite the fact that the rules and guidance we use when preparing for the AGM state that the relevant documents will be mailed to such persons this did not take place in August this year.

(This apology will appear in the next issue of the Newsletter.)

Phil Grace Chairman

Note: We do not publish the Report and Accounts but if you were not at the AGM and would like to see a copy please email the Treasurer via the Contact page.

What is the University of the Third Age, or U3A as it is often known?

The University of the Third Age (U3A) movement is a unique and exciting organisation which provides, through its U3As, life-enhancing and life-changing opportunities. Retired and semi-retired people come together and learn together, not for qualifications but for its own reward: the sheer joy of discovery! Members share their skills and life experiences: the learners teach and the teachers learn, and there is no distinction between them.

Further brief details about the movement can be found here, or for the full story of the U3A movement's national organisation, the Third Age Trust, click here to open the national U3A homepage in another tab. For further details of the Higham and Rushden U3A, please carry on browsing this website. Membership application and renewal forms are among the many documents available on the Administration page (although you will need to scroll down the page).

The slideshow below, which you can pause by holding your cursor over one of the dots in the progress bar below it, is of local images.

Many of these pictures were taken from the internet, so we need input from members! Please send your local pictures to us via the blog page.

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Higham and Rushden U3A group news:

MAH-JONG meets on the first and 3rd Fridays of the month from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Windmill Club in Glassbrook Road.

ROCK AND BLUES APPRECIATION is now up and running. The next meeting will be held on November 30th in Irthlingborough, and further members are very welcome. (Contact webmaster(at)highamandrushdenu3a.org.uk for more details).

The HISTORY GROUP has already arranged its' trips to take place on the first Thursday of each month May to September inclusive next year. This notice is issued to avoid clashes with any other Interest Group which may be considering the same dates.

A Non Fiction Book Group is being formed by Linda and Chris Walker (01933 987892), with the first meeting on Monday 15th January.
Are you a non -fiction reader? Do you share their interest? Travel, History, Biography etc. Members would need to commit to buying the books we will be reading either on Kindle or online.

Looking for the groups calendar? It is now further down the page.

Chairman's monthly message for November

I imagine that most of you are aware of the proposed closure of libraries across the county. The consultation sets out three options - Options 2 and 3 would result in the loss of local libraries in Irchester, Raunds and Higham Ferrers. Option 1 allows the libraries in Raunds and Higham Ferrers to remain open provided there is a local community group prepared to take over the running of the library AND there is the support of the local Council. Local libraries act as a “community hub” providing something for most people and enriching the community. There is Play and Learn Time for the little ones, Knit and Natter and technology advice for the “oldies”, the Quilters, “Scrabblers” and the Mah Jong players meet there. If you want to research your past there is free advice on how to look into your family history and you can search sources such as newspapers and Ancestry.com. Libraries will help with applications for a Bus Pass or a disabled Blue Badge. Oh, and you can take out a book to read!

All sorts of activities will be happening in your area as libraries across the county prepare to fight these proposals. Keep an eye out and assist wherever you can. I ask U3A members to respond to the consultation and to lobby their Councillors, tell your family, tell your friends. It doesn’t matter if your library isn’t at risk, the loss of any library would diminish the local community. I urge you to make your views known to NCC before the consultation closes on January 13th.

You can respond online via the NCC website – enter “library consultation”. Or, if you prefer, responses can be made in writing; Library Consultation, 1 Angel Square, Angel Street, Northampton NN1 1ED. Remember that for Higham Ferrers and Raunds you need to say that you think Option 1 is the correct choice. Phil Grace

Current weather for the Rushden and Higham Ferrers area.

National U3A news

U3A has negotiated discounts for block bookings at various events:

Click on any of the links above for more information.

If you are looking for other sources of information on virtually any subject, whether related to what you do in the U3A or elsewhere, U3A has produced guidance on MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) which you can find here.

The Third Age Trust, parent organisation for all U3As, has now moved from Bromley to Central London.

Higham and Rushden U3A monthly meetings

Make sure you don't miss our interesting lectures on the third Wednesday of the month by making a note in your diary.
Meetings now start at 1.45 pm prompt at the Pemberton Centre, HE Bates Way, Rushden, NN10 9YP. Visitors are welcome at £3 per meeting for a maximum of 2 meetings.

Information about public transport to the Pemberton Centre can be found here.

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December 13th
(2nd Wednesday)
Northamptonshire in Winter Jon-Paul Carr


January 17th Life on Stage: Variety Theatre
Mark Walsh
A look at what was an important part of the
entertainment industry.
February 21st The American Civil War
John Wright
A fascinating insight into this subject.
March 21st Tales from Rockingham Castle
Trisha Woods
You may have visited but Trish will give
an insider's viewpoint.
April 18th My favourite dive yet
Lee Bishop
A much requested return visit to talk about
his favourite dive.
May 16th Forensic Podiatry Professor Mark Curran
Much more than a talk about feet!
June 20th Life in War-torn Middle East Philip Caine
Philip is a published author, drawing upon his
experience whilst working in Iraq and other places.
July 18th Hunters of the sky Jennifer Anderson
A wonderful audio visual experience with
breathtaking photography of birds of prey.

Higham and Rushden U3A groups calendar

The calendar below is live and being continuously updated by group leaders.

To look at group activities further in advance, please use the scrollbar to the right of the calendar (if there is one) rather than the scrollbar on the right of the web page. If you are only interested in the activities of one particular group, you can select it from the dropdown list next to the word "Group".