Group News Stop Press

U3A Long Walk 2/10/20

Hi All,

Under the current Government/U3A rules (watch this space!!), just a gentle reminder that our next U3A Long Walk around Stanton by Dale is on Friday 2nd of October. This 12 km / 7.15 mile walk will be led by me. Please note that due to the restrictions for Corvid-19, we all need to travel separately to meet at Stanton by Dale at 09.30 am. Please bring your own food and drink. You will need hand sanitizer and gloves for negotiating countryside gates and stiles. A face mask would be a useful addition.

Please read my risk assessment form U3A-KMS-FRM-014 and then consider the risk to yourself using the other personal risk form . You do not have to share the contents of this personal risk assessment with me but, if you decide to join us, then simply let me know. I already have about 10 members who have signed up as interested but would like confirmation from them.

Please let me know (email , land line (0115) 917 7150, Mobile 07759 400966) if you intend to join the walk or you have to cancel at the last minute. NB, It is always worthwhile checking your email inbox just before the walk in case it has had to be cancelled at the last minute for any reason.

Walk details

The walk will start from the Stanhope Arms pub at Stanton by Dale village and go roughly south west to cross Mayfield golf course and nearly to Risley. Just before Risley, the path turns sharply north west to go up to join the Midshires Way and skirt around Risley Coppice. After a short section of road walking we cut off to Dale Abbey and return to Stanton via Furnace Pond. The total ascent is a modest 690 feet. There are a few gates and stiles. There is only one field that is likely to be muddy but only if we have had rain just beforehand. There are no toilets on the walk but plenty of bushes.


I have obtained permission from the Stanhope Arms pub to use their car park but strangely they say they cannot accommodate us for a drink after the walk even outside. Maybe this is because I told them we will be a group of about 11. The car park, grid reference SK466380, is almost opposite the pub. One way to get to Stanton is to take the Ilkeston Road (A6007) from the Bramcote roundabout on the A52, go straight across the double mini roundabout and turn left towards Stapleford at the next mini roundabout. After a short distance turn right into Moorbridge Lane signposted to Stanton by Dale. Follow the road for about ¾ mile to reach a T junction at Stanton Gate. Turn right, signposted Stanton by Dale/Ilkeston, and follow the road for about ½ mile. Just beyond the Seven Oaks Inn turn left into seven Oaks Road, signposted Stanton by Dale. Follow the road round for about 1 mile to reach an angled T junction. Turn right to reach the grassy triangle in the centre of Stanton. The short distance along the road to the right is where the pub and car park are situated.


Theatre Group Newsletter September 2020

Dear Theatre Group Members,

Firstly, apologies that this newsletter is reaching you later in the month than usual. I’m afraid that the constant changes around keeping the U3A running during the COVID era have eaten into my time recently!

Sadly, we seem to be getting even further away from being able to resume theatre visits than we were previously.

Here are some suggestions to keep us busy with theatre available in our own homes:

It is well worth signing up to email updates from “What’s On Stage”. This gives news about upcoming shows across the UK, either in theatres, or to watch on-line at home.
If you like to watch drama online regularly, it may be worth subscribing to “Marquee TV”. They have an offer on until October 4th, which allows you to sign up for a year’s subscription at 50% of the normal price. If you are unable to find details, let me know and I will forward you the email that shows the offer.
Return of “The Shows Must Go On”
Many of us enjoyed the shows that were streamed in the “The Shows must go on”, streamed on YouTube. The good news is that the series is to return from September 25th, with each show available for 48 hours.

This week’s show is “Fame: The Musical”

It is worth signing up to to be kept up to date with the next screening.

Local Theatre
The Classic Thriller Season production of “The Black Veil”, filmed on the Theatre Royal stage can still be streamed. It is based on Charles Dickens classic Victorian thriller and described as “eerie, nightmarish, chillingly spooky, a sure-fire winner”.

If you can’t find it on The Theatre Royal’s website, or by searching The Theatre Royal’s YouTube channel, let me know and I will forward you the link.

Nottingham Playhouse Unlocked:

Nottingham Playhouse are unlocking their doors for this exciting three -week festival, where all shows are planned to be shown to a socially distanced audience, as well streamed for audiences across the country to enjoy. More details are available on The Nottingham Playhouse website.

From Wed 21st October- Sat 7th November only

Christmas is certainly not going to be normal this year. However, if you are going to miss pantomime, there is a chance to watch Panto Online. “Jack and the Beanstalk” is a socially distanced pantomime, complete with ingenious sets, fabulous costumes and even a real beanstalk!
It will be streamed into homes from December 4th onwards for the perfect family treat. To secure your tickets for the special price of £15, book by 30th September 2020 at . Tickets will allow you to watch the pantomime as many times as you like between 4th December and 10th January.

I do hope that most of you can find something of interest above. Do let me know if you have any other suggestions or recommendations that can be shared with members.

I do hope that this newsletter finds everyone safe and well.

Best wishes,

Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Coordinator

Art History and Appreciation Weather in Art Volume 4

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Weather in Art Volume 4:
• Barbara Johnson has chosen “Avenue in the Rain” and “Rainy Day Boston” by Childe Hassam
• Dorothy Coombes has chosen The Storm Spirits by Evelyn de Morgan, 1900, Oil on Canvas
• Ingrid McIvor has chosen “Bridge in the Rain” by Utagawa Hiroshige and Vincent van Gogh

What an interesting selection of art we are seeing. Thank you to all contributors.

Please do keep sending your choices through to me (if you can’t manage a web link, just tell me the title and artist and I will do the rest) any time until the end of September at or

Comments are welcome about the selections on the email forum.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation Weather in Art Volume 3

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Weather in Art Volume 3

Fran Weden has sent through 4 of her favourite paintings linked to the topic. Thank you, Fran.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation Weather in Art Volume 2

Dear AHA Members,

Welcome to Volume 2 of “Weather in Art” (attached). Thank you to the following members:

• Alan Lewis has chosen “La Demoiselle” by Victor Gabriel Gilbert
• Felicity Harrison has chosen “Houses of Parliament” by Claude Monet
• Lindsay Litton and Janet Hunt have both chosen “La Pie” (The Magpie) by Claude Monet

Please carry on sending your choices through to me (if you can’t manage a web link, just tell me the title and artist) any time in September at or

The email forum is available for anyone who wants to share comments about the choices with others in the group.

Interesting News: Sky Arts Available Free from Thursday 17th September

With BBC4 output seemingly reducing, the good news is that Sky Arts (the only UK channel dedicated to arts and culture) will be free to air from this Thursday.

You should be able to find it from that date on Freeview Channel 11; Freesat 147 and Virgin Media 123, as well as Sky 122.

Its aim is to “increase access to and drive participation in the arts at a vital time for the cultural sector”.

A laudable aim indeed!

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation Weather in Art Volume 1

Dear AHA Members,

Please see: Weather in Art Volume 1

• Frances Nugent has chosen ” Moonlight” by John Atkinson Grimshaw
• Jill Davis has chosen “When the West with Every Evening Glows” by Joseph Farquharson
• Karin Willliams has chosen “Lowestoft Trawler in Bad Weather” (artist unknown)

As usual, the email forum is available for anyone who wants to share comments about the choices with others from the group.

If anyone would like to sign up to the forum who hasn’t already joined, just let me know and I will send you an invitation to join.

Please keep your selections coming through to me until the end of September

at or

Also, welcome to our latest new AHA member -Anneke Cross.

TV This Week

An interesting new series starts this Friday evening at 9pm on BBC2:

“The Romantics and Us with Simon Schama”

The Times says “Simon Schama looks squarely at the insurrectionary protests of our times and essentially says ‘Nothing new here’. He argues that it was all being done three centuries ago when the Romantics century-long revolution in thought and creativity changed the way we think of our individuality. The programme quickly settles down into showing us great art, and explaining its power and importance.”

Perhaps the basis of an AHA topic for the future?

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

U3A Long Walk 2/10/20

Hi All,

Our last long walk around the Wetton Hills was supposed to be a test run using two pods of six with two leaders. However, just prior to the walk the number of a group for walking in the countryside was relaxed to a maximum of thirty. This allowed the twelve of us to walk as one group. As this seemed reasonably successful, I’m proposing another long walk on Friday 2nd October which will be less arduous than around the Wetton Hills but about the same length. It will start at Stanton by Dale with some sections we have walked before but also with a few new paths. Hopefully a date for your diary! I’ll send out all the details about a week before the walk.


Art History and Appreciation September 2020

Dear AHA Members,

Hoping this finds everyone safe and well, and that people have been able to see a little more of friends and family over the summer.

September has come around very quickly, and things are still uncertain for many U3A groups and their venues. Beeston Methodist Church is not reopening until at least October, and even then, the capacity of most rooms there will be extremely limited in order to meet social distancing guidelines. The AHA planning team will be discussing plans for the group at their next meeting in mid-September, when hopefully, things may be a little clearer.

Anyway, enough of the negative issues for the time being.

Our theme for September is “Weather” (we certainly seem to have had a lot of that recently!!). We are asking people to research and share art (paintings, drawings, sculpture etc etc) on this theme, whether it is sun, rain, wind, snow, clouds, storms, or any other type of weather. Everything is welcome.

Please send your choices through to me (if you can’t manage a web link, just tell me the title and artist) any time in September at or

The email forum is available for anyone who wants to share news or art suggestions with others.

If anyone would like to sign up to the forum who hasn’t already joined, just let me know and I will send you an invitation to join.

Also, welcome to our new AHA member this month- Gloria Brandon.

Art News
Thank you to Fran Weden who says-“I thought this article from the Arts Society might be of interest to others.
This looks a really interesting article- well worth looking at.

Art Fund

Googling “Art Fund” takes you to the website of the Art Fund. Here you can sign up to their regular newsletter- “Art in your inbox” and gives you access to information about exhibitions (virtual and actual). At the moment they say-
“Digital museum experiences
Not ready to visit in person? We’ll bring you the best digital museum experiences, like Mushrooms – the art, design and future of fungi at Somerset House, Young Rembrandt at the Ashmolean Museum, or Vikings Live at the British Museum.”
And “Give our podcast a listen
Get to know museums like never before with Meet Me at the Museum. From Russell Kane at the Whitworth to Jessie Burton at Charleston, tune in for conversations about art and life, and go behind the scenes at some of the UK’s cultural highlights.”

Exhibition Update
Janet Hunt has kindly put together some information about current London Exhibitions:
“Just a few updates on current London exhibitions which perhaps could be circulated to AHA members!
Apart from The National Portrait Gallery which can only be viewed online at present , all the rest are open and pre-bookable with timed tickets. The exhibition at the NPG is the BP Portrait Awards.
The Royal Academy “: Gauguin & the Impressionists” until October 18th
The Summer Exhibition has been re-scheduled for October 6th to January 3rd 2021
Tate Modern “Andy Warhol” until September 6th
Tate Britain “Aubrey Beardsley” until Sept 20th 2020 ; “Gwen John “ until December 7th 2020
National Gallery “Titian -Love Desire & Death” until January 2021
Nicholas Maes –Dutch Master of the Golden Age –to September 20th 2020
Many thanks to Janet

We look forward to seeing everyone’s “Weather in Art” choices. If you contact anyone in the group who does not have email or internet access, please do let them know what we are doing.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

U3A Long Walk 20/08/20

Hi All,

Just an update regarding the Long Walk next Thursday 20th August around the Wetton Hills. Anne and I pre-walked most of it last Tuesday, which has prompted me to make a few changes to the details. First of all, I’m changing the start time at Wetton to 10.30 am as the journey is at least 65 minutes. Secondly, on reaching the bridge over the Dove, we found several “road closed” signs which were not obviously indicating the Milldale road or the Alstonefield road. In spite of seeing many more closure signs, we took the Alstonefield road and managed to reach Wetton. Three different local people did not know which road was closed or why. I suggest that you use the Alstonefield road route from the main road (A515). Immediately after going over the bridge over the River Dove, take the right hand fork up to Alstonefield. On reaching Alstonefield, pass the Wesleyan Chapel on your right and grassy triangle on your left. Take the left hand fork signposted Wetton 1 ¾ miles. Go straight on passing another grassy triangle on your left to get to a T junction. Turn left as signposted to Wetton 1 ¾ miles down to Hope. Just before the Watts Russell pub turn right uphill for about 200 yards to follow the road round a sharp right hand bend. In another 250 yards the road turns sharp left and continues for about 500 yards straight into Wetton. On reaching the T junction, turn right and soon after turn left to reach the car park after another 150 yards.

We also found the car park at the south west edge of the village was full at 11.00 (Alan Beale’s prediction!) However, the Sports Field has been opened during the day (8am to 8pm) as an overflow car park with plenty of room for cars. This is situated on the left immediately before you enter the village on the road from Alstonefield. The toilets at the first official car park were open but you probably need to take your own gloves and sanitizing fluid. It does not matter which car park you use but the walk will start from the official car park by the toilets.

Remember to travel in your own transport and to bring you own food and drink (lots if hot), gloves and hand sanitizer. Hope to see you on the walk.

To prevent me having to ‘phone people, please could you acknowledge that you have received this update.


Theatre Group August 2020

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I do hope that this update finds everyone safe and well.

As theatres remain closed and are facing an uncertain future, I will try to cheer people up (at least a little) by suggesting theatre to watch online. Some of this is free to watch, whereas other events ask for donations. Some are now ticketed, chargeable online events, to try to keep theatres in business.

1) Local Theatre Events
“Come To Where I Am”
“Derby Theatre is thrilled to partner with Paines Plough to launch the Derby series of Come To Where I Am.
The four plays from Derby and East Midlands writers –
Jane Upton, Simon Marshall, Jane Wainwright and John Booker – are now available to watch on YouTube.
THE PRICE OF HOME by Jane Upton – 0:34
BEAU REPAIRE by Simon Marshall – 13:31
CROOKED SPIRE by Jane Wainwright – 23:31
CHAD NIGHT by John Booker – 43:42
Come To Where I Am will co-commission 30 new short plays from local writers about the places they call home and their relationship to home at this time.”
See for further information.

2) Other Theatre Streaming
“Watching Rosie”
“Original Theatre Company’s, Watching Rosie, is a tender portrayal of dementia during lockdown and the enduring power of love. Starring BAFTA winning actress Miriam Margolyes, this heartbreaking and hilarious online play highlights the incredible bond between Alice and Rosie as they face change, confusion and an unexpected arrival from Tesco… “
Watch from August 6th – Sept 30th .More information available from

NB Original Theatre Online also has many other production to stream (either free or to rent from £2-50)

“And So We Come Forth”
“Apple Family Productions has announced the world premiere of AND SO WE COME FORTH: The Apple Family: A Dinner on Zoom, the latest play in the Rhinebeck Panorama, written and directed by Tony Award winner Richard Nelson, on Wednesday, July 1 at 7:30 p.m. ET. The play, written by Nelson from his home in Rhinebeck, New York, will be available to watch for free on YouTube and also at and will continue for eight weeks.”
To watch, please Google “And So We Come Forth YouTube”

3) Family Shows
A couple of suggestions for anyone needing to keep children entertained this summer:
Nottingham Playhouse is reshowing their Zoom family show “Noah and the Peacock” about a peacock and peahen trying to get to Noah’s Ark. The audience make their own sound effects and dressing up is encouraged!
From August 12th-23rd, £10,

“Wind in the Willows- the musical”
“Join Ratty, Badger, Mole and the irrepressible Mr Toad as they embark on a series of extraordinary adventures in The Wind in the Willows musical. Packed with comedy, thrills, beautiful set design, dazzling choreography and an exuberant score, this spectacular hit musical is fun for all the family.”
£4-99 to rent from

4) Shakespeare
RSC’s production of “Othello” with Hugh Quarshie has been added to the Shakespeare plays available on BBC iplayer as part of its Culture in Quarantine season.
Free Shakespeare on the radio: Richard II
The Sunday Times recommends this podcast starring Andre Holland. It is divided into 4 hour-long episodes.
Available on Google Play or Apple Podcasts App

5) Opera
Benjamins Britten’s “Curlew River” is available to watch online, with excellent performers (Ian Bostridge, Gwynne Howell and Mark Stone)
Available until August 31st at

As usual, there is plenty to stop us getting bored!
Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Art History and Appreciation

Apologies Everyone,

I realised that I had forgotten to include this interesting information that Julia Powell had passed on to me, in my earlier email. So here it is:

“I came across this today. It’s not paintings but is definitely art. Very interesting.
Maybe our group would like to view?

Kind regards

Best wishes,

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Volume 4 Animals in Art (the final volume):
• Lindsay Litton chose Rousseau’s “Exotic Landscape II
• Janet Hunt chose “Whistlejacket” by George Stubbs
• Gill Martin chose “Blue Fox” by Franz Marc
• Anne Pinnock chose Leonardo Da Vinci’s -“Cats and Lions and a Dragon”

Thank you to everyone who contributed either by sharing an art choice, putting a comment on the forum ( ), or simply enjoying other people’s selections and write-ups. Durer’s “Young Hare “ was a very popular choice this month, with 3 people choosing to nominate it.

AHA will be taking a break during August this year, but we shall be back in September with new online topics, to keep us busy until we can meet face to face again.

The forum will remain available to post comments, or share news and views.

If you have any suggestions for new topics, or anything you would like to see the group doing during these challenging times, please do let me know: the AHA planning team will be meeting via Zoom in mid-August.

Thank you to Fran Weden for her book recommendation:
“This book might be of interest, especially to those of us semi locked down. It’s available on Amazon. Another art related book I found totally engrossing is “THE LOST PRE-RAPHAELITE: THE LIFE AND LOVES OF ROBERT BATEMAN”, also on Amazon.

Recommended Online Gallery Events

The National Gallery has some free online talks to book via their website:
On Thursdays 6th and 20th August at 4pm, there is the chance to hear opposing views about a piece of art selected by the curators, then to decide where you stand.
On Friday 7th August at 4pm, there is a talk “How did the young, rebellious Victorian painters Rosetti, Holman Hunt and Millais respond to the National Gallery collection”.
The Courtauld Gallery – still has a virtual tour of its masterpieces available via its website.

Salisbury Cathedral
“Spirit and Endeavour” marks the cathedral’s 800th birthday- a show that remembers and celebrates the lives of all those who created it- quarrymen, stonecutters, masons and sculptors, carpenters, blacksmiths, roofers and glaziers. Artworks of 20 of their modern-day counterparts are scattered around the cathedral site.
An online virtual tour of the show can be taken at

Podcast/ BBC Sounds app- Radio 4
“Simon Schama: The Great Gallery Tours” comes highly recommended. In The Times, James Marriott described Schama’s programme on The Courtauld Gallery as being like listening to a Persian cat. “in my mind’s eye I pictured a big fluffy white cat slinking around the Courtauld Gallery, purring with pleasure in front of its favourite pictures. What a magnificent beast.”

Compton Verney
For anyone who feels ready to plan a trip out into the real world, Compton Verney has reopened its exhibition of Cranach, the “prolific, off-kilter German Renaissance painter” -The Times.
Until Jan 3rd 2021 ( )

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Long Walks

Hi All,

Just to keep you informed of recent progress, on Tuesday 28th July five of us managed a “small group” walk of 7 miles from Staunton Harold Reservoir. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we did not quite get to the maximum allowable group of six people under the current rules. It involved a small amount of extra paperwork and, as you might expect, some difficulty in strictly adhering to the social distancing rule. However, we thought it went sufficiently well to consider another walk with at least two pods of up to six people with a suitable distance between the pods. There will be at least two separate leaders and we hope to choose a simple route with plenty of open spaces. Anne Pinnock has kindly agreed to act as a leader for one of the pods. I’ll send out more details once we have identified a suitable route from previous walks or a completely new one.


Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

See Volume 3 of Animals in Art:

• Janet Hoult chose “Blue Horse 1” 1911 by Franz Marc and “Elephants”
• Hilary Sutherland chose The Giant Deer
• Felicity Harrison and Ingrid Mc Ivor chose “The Hare” by Durer

What a lovely variety of art we are seeing. Please keep sending your choices through to me at or until the end of July.

As usual, comments about people’s choices are welcome at

Art on TV

• Monday 27th July 7pm Sky Arts- Exhibition on Screen “Hieronymus Bosch- Visions of Genius
• “ “ 30pm BBC4 – The Joy of Painting
• Weds 29th July 8pm BBC4- The Riviera- A History in Pictures
• Thurs 30th July 11.50pm BBC4- Art Passion and Power- The History of the Royal Collection
• “ “ 50 BBC4-Bought with Love- The Secret History of British Art Collections

News from the Royal Academy (thank you to Hilary Wells)

Bite-size art history from our Collection

In 1922, the Royal Academy elected its first female member in over 150 years, Annie Swynnerton.

Find out how to read her enigmatic painting of a young woman with our 60-second video. – Available on the RA’s Website-

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Long Walks

Hi All,

An update on the U3A Long Walks situation:-

Many thanks to all of you who have replied to my two questions regarding restarting the walks. I’ve received comments from 24 members of the group. 17 would like to restart with groups limited to 6 and 6 of those would be prepared to act as leader of a small group. Anne and I have been walking on a private basis with up to 4 in a group and were planning one of 6 in a group. We are now going to use this group of 3 couples to test operating the walk under the latest instructions. These instructions are mainly an extension of my normal method of organizing a walk with the addition of social distancing, travelling in our own transport, taking our own food and drink and wearing gloves for negotiating stiles and gates. I’ve already pre-walked a route from Staunton Harold reservoir and intend to walk it with our group of 6 on Tuesday 28th July. I’ll let you know how we managed under the new rules. If it is successful, then we can consider several small groups for future walks either separately or with a suitably staggered start. Each small group would have its own leader with knowledge of the route. Watch this space!!



Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Volume 2 of Animals in Art

Jill Davies chose “Dignity and Impudence ” by Edwin Landseer

Karin Williams chose a Cat by Hiroshige and

“Cheshire Cat” by John Tenniel

Maggie Roberts chose “Chat Noir” by Steinlen

(Apologies that I still haven’t managed to sort out the correct orientation for Karin’s choices. Please do let me know if you have found a way of doing it)

Please keep sending them through to me at or until the end of July. At the moment I don’t have a bank of choices waiting to be circulated.

As usual, comments about people’s choices are welcome at

I am sending this from the wilds of Pembrokeshire via quite dodgy wi-fi, so I’m afraid this is a brief email without the usual weekly “extras”!

Best wishes,

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Welcome to Animals In Art Volume 1 :
• Alan Lewis has chosen “Cranes on Seashore” by Koson Ohara
• Fran Weden has chosen “THE GOLDFINCH” by CAREL FABRITIUS
• Dorothy Coombes has chosen “Horse at Water”-Nic Fiddian Green

Please keep sending them through to me at or until the end of July. At the moment I don’t have a bank of choices waiting to be circulated.

As usual, comments about people’s choices are welcome at

Recommended on TV

Fran Weden has spotted a new programme on BBC1 at 3.45pm on week days: “HOME IS WHERE THE ART IS”. She hasn’t seen it yet as she has recorded it, but it looks as though it might be quite fun. For those of us self- isolating it could be entertaining, she thinks.

Thank you to Fran for the suggestion.

News from the Royal Academy (courtesy of Hilary Wells):

Revisit Ai Weiwei in 360 degrees

“We’re very excited to be opening our doors this week, but we know that not everyone can visit us quite yet. We’ll continue to bring great art, inspiration and escapism to your inbox, from all of us at the RA, until you can visit once again. This week we’re returning to Ai Weiwei’s monumental retrospective from 2015 with our 360 degree immersive tour of the galleries.Accompanied by commentary from the exhibition’s curators and interviews with the artist himself, uncover the meaning, context and technical detail of Ai Weiwei’s provocative and visionary pieces. If you missed the exhibition the first time around, don’t miss it now”

Thank you to Hilary

Blockbusters to explore online.

Vikings Live at the British Museum The spectacular cinematic experience Vikings Live is not only a look into the British Museum’s celebrated 2014 blockbuster exhibition, but also an absorbing historical exploration across four continents, over 1,000 years back in time. Including a tour of the exhibition and its striking artefacts, and a deep dive into maritime life, Vikings Live looks at how the legacy of the Vikings shaped our world today.

We Will Walk-Art and Resistance in the American South at Turner ContemporaryCelebrating the work of African American artists and makers from Alabama and other southern US states in the 1950s and 60s, this exhibition focuses on the art that was shaped by the Civil Rights movement, and the incredible lives of the people and artists who lived through it. A virtual tour follows pieces in the exhibition spanning disciplines including sculpture, painting and quilts, characterised by their use of recycled materials as well as their connection to culture and time.

Young Rembrandt at The Ashmolean Museum One of the most startling elements of the Ashmolean Museum’s exhibition focusing on the early work of Dutch Master Rembrandt is the revelation of his lack of born-genius – Rembrandt’s craft was one perfected over time through an incredible dedication to art, ambition and greatness. Exhibition curator An Van Camp takes you through the exhibition section-by-section in a virtual tour, taking a closer look at Rembrandt’s early years and following the development through his work to the Master he’s known as today.

Still Available:

Picasso and Paper at The Royal Academy of Arts This exhibition looks at Picasso’s extraordinary use of paper and how this humble material became an integral tool in shaping his iconic work.The exhibition tour and video include a close look at some of the artist’s most celebrated works, such as La Vie (1903), born out of the artist’s melancholic Blue Period, and Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907), a painting considered revolutionary in the history of art. Developed in the artist’s Rose Period, the masterpiece demonstrates Picasso’s first steps into Cubism.

Enjoy the well-earned sunshine, and hope at least some of you are planning to get away on some kind of summer holiday.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Theatre Group Newsletter July 20

Dear Theatre Group Members,

Welcome to July’s newsletter.

Now that lockdown is easing, (at least in some respects), and free online screenings reduce, I am planning to send group updates out at the beginning of each month, rather than weekly.

Thank you to all members who have sent their memories through, or made other contributions.

Members’ Memories

Thank you to Josie Gibson who tells us:
“I can remember going to London about 40 years ago to see The King and I at the London Palladium.
We went to see Changing of the Guard at the Palace first and then on to the theatre.
The King was played by Yul Brynner. He was magnificent!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will never forget his performance”.

Ann Ceurstemont says:
“I also loved West Side Story and saw a brilliant production at The Curve in Leicester last year. The singing was amazing , the set brilliant and we were all transported back to our youth ! “
It is wonderful to have these memories, although I do think it makes us pine even more for the theatre to return to normal now.

Last week I mentioned that “Six” was scheduled to be performed in October 2020. This has now been postponed again, and our tickets are now valid for Saturday 11th September 2021, 2.30pm.
I am therefore not advertising for anyone who wants to try to sell on their ticket until nearer the time.

National Theatre at Home
There are just two more free screenings on the National Theatre’s You Tube Channel:
“The Deep Blue Sea”- Director: Carrie Cracknell
Cast: Helen McCrory, Tom Burke

Thursday 9 July from 7pm- “Terence Rattigan’s devastating masterpiece contains one of the greatest female roles in contemporary drama”

Still available until the afternoon of July 9th –“ Les Blancs”

The final play to be screened in the series will be “Amadeus” starting on Thursday July 16th at 7pm.

Garsington Opera

If you enjoy opera, Garsington Opera’s “At Home” You Tube channel is worth a look.
Currently, “Le Nozze de Figaro” and “The Turn of the Screw” are available to watch free of charge.
Le Nozze de Figaro- “Joshua Bloom is a commanding Figaro with excellent timing in John Cox’s handsome 2005 production of Mozart’s Enlightenment comedy, filmed in 2017 at Garsington.”
The Turn of the Screw- “A five-star hit from last year’s Garsington festival, Britten’s ghost story is thrillingly told in Louisa Miller’s Victorian-era staging, which preserves the chilling ambiguity at the heart of this adaptation of the Henry James novella”- available until July 19th via BBC iplayer or –
Neil Fisher in “The Times”.
I do think that free screenings, or those that request that you consider a donation, are going to become fewer and further between. However, more theatres are starting to introduce online performances for which tickets can be purchased. I will try to keep you updated about anything I spot. Please do send me any information that you can.

Finally-July’s Quiz

Below are anagrams of 10 London Theatres. Can you work out which they are? (Answers below)
1. Bah lamar

2. Cly emu

3. Alvaro politico

4. Afresh busty

5. Bag dermic

6. Acidly clip

7. Oxen phi

8. Especial frown

9. Allium pad

10. Clio muse

I hope at least some of you are now able to get out and about a little, and able to see friends and family.

Perhaps you may even get to go away on holiday!

Whatever you do, I hope the weather improves, so that you can enjoy it.

Next newsletter at the beginning of August.
Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group members,

This morning you will have received Eve Gurd’s email regarding the three remaining planned theatre group visits. If anyone has a ticket for “Six” that they would like to try to sell on to another member, please let me know and I will advertise it in the next update.

National Theatre at Home

“Les Blancs” Director: Yaël Farber
Cast: Shella Atim, Gary Beadle, Sidney Cole

Thursday 2 July from 7pm

A family and a nation fall apart under the pressure to determine their own identity. Written eleven years after A Raisin in the Sun, Lorraine Hansberry’s final drama, Les Blancs, is a highly theatrical search for the soul of post-colonial Africa.

Still available – A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Hamilton- the film

If anyone is able to access Disney+, it may be worth watching “Hamilton”, the film ( a 2016 recording of the original cast) which is being streamed on this channel from July 3rd.
Dominic Maxwell writes in “The Times” that “it captures the excitement and depth of a show so full of ideas, emotions and good rhymes that it sometimes feels like three great musicals in one.”

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Welcome to July’s AHA newsletter and the announcement of our new monthly topic.

Water in Art Volume 10

Firstly, please find the final volume of “Water in Art” attached:
• Val Tucker has chosen “Marina Seascape” by Emilio
• Gill Martin has chosen “Summer Evening at Skagen” by PS Kroyer
• Alison Wilson has chosen “The Pool” by Edward Hornel
• Anne Pinnock has chosen “The Flamingoes” by Henri Rousseau

Thank you so much to everyone who has contributed- it was wonderful to see such a wide range of art.

If you didn’t feel able to contribute this time, I hope you enjoyed seeing others’ choices.

Thank you for being such a supportive group.

New Topic for July

The AHA planning team met again via Zoom, and for July’s topic we have chosen
“Animals in Art”

These could be real or mythical; wild or domestic; animals from literature; water, land or air creatures. Paintings, drawings, sculptures- everything is welcome. Please send your choices through to me (if you can’t manage a web link, just tell me the title and artist) any time in July at or


This year, the AHA will be taking a break in August, so there will be no topic set. The email forum will still be available for anyone who wants to share news or art suggestions with others.

We will be back in September and we have plenty of idea for topics while we are unable to meet in person. Please let us know if there is there is anything you would particularly like the group to do.

Highlighted Exhibition

“Toulouse -Lautrec and the Masters of Montmartre”

While the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath is closed, you can see their blockbuster exhibition online. View dazzling posters from the thrilling 1890s Bohemian Paris era.

Online now at

July Art Quiz

Do you know where these art galleries and museums are situated? (Answers at end of newsletter):
1. The Metropolitan
2. The State Hermitage
3. Nacional del Prado
4. Rijksmuseum
5. Uffizi
6. Serpentine
7. Gagosian
8. National Palace Museum
9. Rodin
10. Smithsonian
11. Aria Art Gallery
12. Musee D’Orsay
13. Albemarle
14. Kodl
15. Fitzwilliam
16. Ashmolean
17. Pergamom Museum
18. Kelvongrove
19. Louvre
20. Walker

Best wishes (and we hope the weather settles down, now that we have finished our water topic!),
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see: Volume 9 of Water in Art

• Fran Weden has chosen “The Water Seller of Seville” by Velazquez
• Janet Hoult has chosen “Reflections, Balloch” by George Hunter
• Jane Smith has chosen some Scottish Landscapes by Samuel Peploe

It was a complete coincidence, (as far as I know) that Janet and Jane both chose Scottish landscape artists and sent them to me on the same date!

Thank you to everyone who is sending comments to It is lovely to have a bit of dialogue going on while we cannot meet in person.

Just one more volume of this topic to send out midweek, when the new topic for July will also be announced.

Art on TV

Again, not much to choose from, but I have spotted:
• Monday 29th June BBC4 9pm- Art of Persia (final episode)
• Tuesday 30th June BBC4 5 past midnight- Unstoppable- Sean Scully and the Art of Everything
• Thurs 2nd July BBC4 11pm- Whoever Heard of a Black Artist? Britain’s Hidden Art History

Highlighted Exhibition:

“Forgotten Masters: Indian Painting for the East India Company”

“It need not be boring staying stuck on the sofa. The Wallace Collection invites you to take an online trip. Meet pompous officials and smartly dressed soldiers, holy men, beggars or scribes; see the buildings and markets and rituals; meet creatures ranging from Malabar squirrels through brahminy starlings to the fat administrator John Wombwell who plonks down a cushion to puff at his hookah. This show of works commissioned by the East India Company from local artist to document every facet of their wondrous culture takes the viewer on a voyage as evocative as it is exotic.” Rachel Campbell-Johnston in “The Times”

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Volume 8 of Water in Art:
• Hilary Sutherland has chosen “The Great Wave at Kanagawa” by Hokusai, plus another Hokusai artwork on display at Chatsworth.
• Maggie Roberts has chosen “Galleon” by Jason Anderson and “Fred’s Last (Aldburgh Beach)” by Mary Fedden
• Sue Blackley has chosen “Sunset 1872” by Kensett
• Your comments about the paintings are very welcome at

Exhibitions Online-I thought this one might be of particular interest:

“Join the British Museum’s Timothy Clark for a close-up on Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai’s iconic print The Great Wave off Kanagawa (1829-33), and discover the spectacular influence this image had on artists around the globe – as well as its new lease of life in a digital world.

A film exploring the legacy and impact of legendary Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai’s most iconic image, The Great Wave, as seen at the British Museum in 2017.

The British Museum’s Timothy Clark zooms in on The Great Wave off Kanagawa, the iconic print that took a starring role at the museum’s 2017 blockbuster exhibition of Katsushika Hokusai’s innovative work. Clark explores how its playful composition and hybrid nature influenced prolific artists across the globe, including Manet and Van Gogh, and gave the image a new life in the digital era, seeing it projected to viral fame in a world dominated by the internet. (or Google” British Museum Hokusai Beyond the Great Wave You Tube”)

Filmed at the British Museum in 2017

The National Gallery

“Take a virtual tour It won’t be long until you can step inside the Gallery again, but did you know you can already explore our space from the comfort of your home? Experience our paintings room by room in these virtual tours.”

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Theatre Group Update

Dear Theatre Group members,

Just a brief update this week:

1) National Theatre at Home
This week’s production is Shakespeare’s “Midsummer Night’s Dream”
Director: Rufus Norris
Cast: Gwendoline Christie, Oliver Chris, David Moorst

Thursday 25 June from 7pm- available for 7 days

2) BBC iplayer Shakespeare

The BBC screened “Hamlet” on BBC 4 last Sunday- this is now available on iplayer in their Shakespeare series.

Thank you to Ann Ceurstemont for recommending “Romeo and Juliet” from the iplayer series. She said that she saw the production at Stratford-upon-Avon and really enjoyed it.

3) Again, not strictly theatre, but the new series of “Talking Heads” (monologues) by Alan Bennett on BBC1 is receiving very good reviews.

So far, Imelda Staunton has performed “Lady of Letters”;

Sarah Lancashire has starred in “An Ordinary Woman”- (quite a controversial topic, some may say).

These are now available to watch on BBC iplayer and the series will continue with more monologues on BBC1 next week

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock -temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

U3A Long Walks

Hi All,

I hope all of you are safe and well.

Just an update on the current Covid-19 situation with regard to Long Walks. At the start of the month I asked the Committee whether the recent relaxation to a maximum of 6 people being allowed to meet outdoors with the usual 2 metre distancing would allow us to consider a small group having a Long Walk. I think the two main issues are keeping everyone safe from the virus and also that we are covered by insurance if we walk as a U3A group. The National U3A have published advice for walking groups and the Beeston U3A Committee have discussed it separately and also in a Regional meeting. The National U3A advice suggests that the walking group facilitator completes a risk assessment form, individual walkers read this and complete their own risk assessment form before deciding on an individual basis whether it is safe enough to go on the walk. As usual with this sort of situation, there are a lot of questions and loose ends. The Committee say that they cannot at the moment recommend re-starting U3A walks even for a small group of 6 people. As a result, I think we need to await further relaxation of the restrictions before we resume walking as a U3A group.


Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Water in Art Volume 7 :
• Lindsay Litton has chosen paintings by Kallela and Escher
• Eve Gurd has chosen “Miranda- The Tempest” by John Waterhouse
• Jenny Timmins has chosen “Poplars at the River Epte” by Monet

Thank you to them for continuing with such a wonderfully diverse selection of art.

Please keep sending them through to me ( or

Thank you to those members who are sharing comments about the choices at

Art on TV this week:

Very thin pickings this week, I’m afraid. All I could find was

Art of Persia Part 2- Monday 22nd June- 9pm -BBC4 (very good reviews for last week’s opening episode)

Picasso and

“There was nothig conventional about this great modernist’s use of this everyday material- log on for the Royal Academy’s 40 minute video tour and you’ll see that drawing is the least of it. Picasso ripped, slashed and burnt; folded, crumpled and sliced. Paper, far more than just a medium for this master, became the very fabric of his imagination.” Rachel Campbell-Johnston in “The Times”

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Water in Art Volume 6.
• Hazel Binks has chosen “Ophelia” by John Millais
• Jenny Berrington has chosen “The Cliff Walk at Pourville” by Claude Monet
• Dorothy Coombes has chosen “Children in the Sea at Valencia Beach” by Sorolla

Please do keep your choices coming through until the end of June ( or )

Comments welcome at

Daily Art Quiz
Thanks to Dorothy Coombes for letting us know about a daily art quiz:

“The Guardian is running a daily quiz on line, which is free and fun.

It’s called The great British Art Quiz and is easy to find on the guardian website.

The quiz is set by museums, galleries and heritage sites around the UK which are closed due to Covid 19 and is composed of questions from 8 items in their collections, which are illustrated. Choose from one of 4 possible answers! It’s a good way to see art works which are normally inaccessible to us.”

News from the Royal Academy (thank you to Hilary Wells)

“Although we can’t open our doors to you just yet, we are delighted to invite you inside virtually this week via our new Google Arts & Culture hub. So find a comfy chair and settle into a Street View tour of our Collections Gallery, go behind the scenes of the historic RA Schools, or whizz around our 250th Summer Exhibition with Grayson Perry RA. There’s so much to see, we’ve selected a few highlights below to help get you started. However you choose to virtually visit the RA – enjoy!”

Plenty to keep us all busy!
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Theatre Group- What to Watch this Week June 17th

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I do hope that this weekly update finds everyone safe and well.

Theatre to Watch Online this week:
The Madness of George III, starring Mark Gatiss

Just one more day to watch this screening on National Theatre at Home (You Tube). 4pm Thursday 18th June is the latest you can start watching

This week’s National Theatre at Home production is “Small Island”.

“Hope and humanity meet stubborn reality as our characters dream of a better world, in three intricately connected stories. Hortense yearns for a new life away from rural Jamaica, Gilbert dreams of becoming a lawyer, and Queenie longs to escape her Lincolnshire roots.”

Available on the National Theatre You Tube channel from 7pm on Thursday 18th June, for seven days.

Culture in Quarantine- BBC

The BBC is showing a series of Shakespeare plays, and these are also available on iplayer.

“Macbeth”, starring Christopher Eccleston and Niamh Cusack (RSC 2018) is available, as are “Romeo and Juliet” and “Hamlet”

Also, (while not strictly theatre) “Staged”, a comedy starring David Tennant and Michael Sheen has received very good reviews. They play fictionalised versions of themselves in this comedy/satire about two actors and a director trying to ensure that the show goes on during lockdown.

As usual, plenty to keep us entertained!

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group facilitator
(Nobody wants to receive unwanted emails- if you would like to removed from the Theatre Group list, please let me know)

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 5 of Water in Art :

• Karin Williams has chosen Hokusai “Under Mannen Bridge” and Monet’s “The Waterlily Pond; Green Harmony”
• Janet Hunt has chosen “The Ancient Mariner” by Gustav Dore
• Julia Powell has chosen “Queen Elizabeth I watching the naval battle” (artist unknown)

The AHA Team is delighted that this theme is proving so popular, but it does mean that there are quite a lot of choices waiting to be circulated. Therefore, we have decided to continue this topic until the end of June, rather than changing it on the June AHA meeting date.

I may make some of the volumes a little bigger, which means that yours may be circulated in a slightly earlier volume than I have told you.

Please, do keep sending them through ( )- your choices are wonderful.

Comments to our email forum-

Art on TV this week:

Sunday 14th June- 12.35 after midnight- BBC4 “British Masters”
Monday 15th June- 9pm- BBC4- “Art of Persia”
Tuesday 16th June- 11.50pm- BBC4- “Christo and Jeanne-Claude- Monumental Art”

News from the Royal Academy – I found Googling “Royal Academy Sensing Spaces”, the easiest way to find this

“How does the room you’re sitting in make you feel?

What is it about the soaring roof of a railway station, the feel of worn stone steps beneath your feet, or the cosy familiarity of your lounge that elicits awe, calmness or contentment? Architecture can provoke all kinds of emotional responses. Back in 2014, we invited seven leading architectural practices to take over our Main Galleries and fill them with monumental structures.Now, we’re inviting you to revisit our blockbuster Sensing Spaces exhibition through our curator’s introduction, interviews and more, to explore how you interact with architecture every day.”

Thank you to Hilary Wells, who keeps me up to date with virtual exhibition news

Nobody wants to be bombarded with unwanted emails. Please let me know if you would like to be removed from the AHA Membership list.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please see Water in Art Volume 4:
• Jean Brookbanks has chosen “Path in the Wheat at Pourville” by Claude Monet
• Barbara Johnson has chosen “Clearing Skies” by Jill Ray
• Felicity Harrison has chosen “Sudden Shower over Ohashi Bridge” by Hiroshige

What a wonderfully diverse range of art we are seeing this month. I feel so privileged getting the first sneak preview each time some sends their selection through. Thank you- do keep them coming!

Clarification of what to send where

Email Forum

Just over one third of our 102 AHA members have joined the email forum, which is great. However, it means that we need to reserve the forum for comments about the selections, plus other art recommendations- just email

Where to send your art choices

So that everyone in AHA can see people’s selections, please email them to me-

Some people have had problems with their emails being sent back (some servers are proving to be temperamental with this address). In this case, please use my personal email address instead-

News from the National Gallery-

Choose “Picture of the Month” from the website menu and-

“Get up close to an intriguing and confident self-portrait of Elisabeth Vigée Le Brun, your picture of the month for June”. Many of us will remember Mike Tayler’s fascinating presentation for AHA a couple of years ago about this artist.

“Search the Collection” for Gainsborough’s ‘Mr and Mrs Andrews’ , which has intrigued art fans for centuries. Hear what broadcaster Jeremy Vine, a parish priest and a host of people had to say about the picture.

Also, enjoy a tour of angels with Curatorial Fellow Joost Joustra.

Plenty to keep us occupied!

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Theatre Group Weekly Update

Dear Theatre Group members,

I hope this weekly update finds everyone safe and well.

Thank you to those who have sent me further memories of past theatre productions. These will be included in July’s Theatre Group newsletter. Do keep them coming through- it is lovely to have reminders of happier times.

1) National Theatre at Home

There is just one more day to watch Coriolanus, starring Tom Hiddleston. 4.15pm tomorrow (Thursday) is the latest you can log on to the You Tube channel and watch the complete performance.

This week’s production, from 7pm tomorrow, Thursday 11th, until Thursday 18th is Alan Bennett’s The Madness of George III, starring Mark Gatiss, which many of us saw in 2018 (doesn’t time fly!) at the Nottingham Playhouse. For anyone who missed the production, below is a synopsis from the Playhouse. There are also lots of other extras about the production available on their website. This is the first show outside London to be streamed as part of the National Theatre at Home series.

Even though I did see it at the Playhouse, I shall certainly look forward to watching it again on YouTube.

About the show (Nottingham Playhouse Website)

The Madness of George III stars Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, The League of Gentlemen, Doctor Who, Wolf Hall, Three Days in the Country), Adrian Scarborough (Gavin and Stacey, Upstairs Downstairs, After the Dance) and Debra Gillett (Call the Midwife and Doctor Who).

“I’ve always been myself, even when I was ill. Only now I seem myself. And that’s the important thing.”

1788. King George III is the most powerful man in the world. However his behaviour is becoming increasingly erratic, with his mind unravelling at a dramatic pace.

As the Queen and Prime Minister attempt to hide the king’s illness from his subjects, royal doctors hopelessly squabble over the correct cure, subjecting him to torturous medical treatments. Ambitious politicians and the scheming prince begin a power struggle, endangering the stability of the crown.

A play about power and identity, examining the fine line between a King and a man, The Madness of George III is an epic, multi-award-winning drama, familiar from both stage and screen. Expect grand costumes and royal pomp alongside nail-biting tension in Nottingham Playhouse’s production of Alan Bennett’s moving and funny masterpiece.

Selected as theatre highlight of 2018 by BBC News, Daily Mail and Nottingham Post.

2) Opera- “Il Trittico”- One of Puccini’s triptych of one-act operas. This is available on the Royal Opera House YouTube channel until June 19th.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Art In Water Volume 3 :
• Jill Davis has chosen “Landscape with a Sunlit Stream” by Charles Francois Daubigny
• Margaret Christopoulos has chosen Folk Art by Eleni Kourtzi, plus Michalis Oikonumu’s “Plages Greques” and “View of Oropos”.

Your comments would be very welcome by emailing (our group’s email forum.)

Art on TV this week:
I’m sure many of us remember Mike Tayler’s excellent AHA presentation about Madame Tussaud, and so may well enjoy:
• Thurs 11th June, 9pm, BBC4 Madame Tussaud- A Legend in Wax

• Sat 13th June, 15pm, Channel 5 Great Paintings of the World- Van Gogh’s Sunflowers
• Sun 14th June, 5.10am, Channel 5 Great Artists- Giotto

Plus, “Museums in Quarantine” is now available on BBC iplayer, with artist specific episodes, as well as private views of closed exhibitions. Well worth a look, if you missed this the first time round.

Please do keep on sending through your choices for “Art in Water”

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Well, the choice of theme this month definitely seems to have affected the weather. Apologies to those who were hoping to continue sunbathing, but my garden has certainly benefitted!

Art in Water Volume 2

Avrille Blecher has chosen a piece of land art by Andy Goldsworthy
Wendy Pavlidis has chosen Rooms by the Sea by Edward Hopper
Jose Gibson has chosen The Untrodden Sand by Laura Knight

News from the Royal Academy
Seven stories from summers past- https://www.royal
In another world, we’d be opening our Summer Exhibition this coming week. It’s a celebration of art ⁠— the world’s largest open submission art show! ⁠— and has happened every year throughout our 252 year history.
Although we can’t open the Summer Exhibition as planned this week, we’re working hard to move this year’s show to the autumn. Couldn’t break that 252 year streak now could we?
We’ll be in touch as soon as we have more details. Until then, we’re taking a trip down memory lane with seven stories from Summer Exhibitions past…

AHA Email Forum
Please do send comments about people’s art choices and any recommendations for exhibitions etc to

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

In accordance with Government advice, all group meetings are cancelled until further notice. Some groups may be making plans to have virtual meetings or to circulate a newsletter. Details will be published when available. See below:

Theatre Group- June Newsletter

Dear Theatre Group Members,

Well, another month has passed, and unfortunately it is still unclear when we shall be able to be able to meet in person again, or when we can resume theatre visits. While watching past productions online at home is not ideal, there have been some very interesting opportunities provided over the past month. I hope you have been able to enjoy at least some of them.

Members’ Memorable Theatre Productions

Thank you to those of you who have sent me memories of past theatre visits.

Jane Jackson says: “Re theatre memories
I vividly remember still,going to see ‘Brand’ by Henrik Ibsen , at The Playhouse.
It must have been in the ‘70s. It starred the now famous Brian Cox.
I don’t think I knew what I was in for and remember coming out of the theatre thoroughly depressed.
If you don’t know the play please read about it and you may see what I mean.”

Angie Rosser just managed to catch last week’s “A Streetcar Named Desire” streaming, and says that she “found it a very compelling watch and very well-acted”.

Felicity Harrision tells us:
“My memorable theatre outing was seeing West Side Story in London at Her Majesty’s theatre. I was about 13 years old and was absolutely enthralled by it, I thought it was the most wonderful thing I had ever seen. At the end I just couldn’t stop crying! My father, whose preference was Flower Drum Song (seen the previous night), couldn’t understand what I saw in “all those juvenile delinquents running about”

Please do keep sending memories through, whether they are positive or negative. Two of the reports above certainly demonstrate the power of drama to lodge in the memory for many years!

Theatre to watch online

I enjoyed “This House” on the National Theatre’s YouTube channel. “Nothing Changes!” would be my comment. The production is available to watch until 4.15pm on Thursday 4th June-

“It’s 1974. And Westminster is about to go to war with itself. Set in the engine rooms of the House of Commons, James Graham dives deep into the secret world of the Whips who roll up their sleeves and go to often farcical lengths to influence an unruly chorus of MPs within the Mother of all Parliaments”. (National Theatre website ). 1974. An often amusing insight into the workings of British politics.

The next National Theatre production is Shakespeare’s “Coriolanus”, which runs from 7pm on Thursday 4th June for 7 days.

“Tom Hiddleston plays the title role in Shakespeare’s searing tragedy of political manipulation and revenge.

When an old adversary threatens Rome, the city calls once more on her hero and defender. But he has enemies at home too.

As famine threatens the city, the citizens’ hunger swells to an appetite for change, and on returning from the field, Coriolanus must confront the march of realpolitik and the voice of an angry people.

The cast includes Tom Hiddleston and Mark Gatiss. The play contains scenes featuring occasional gore and staged violence. (Rating 12A)” (National Theatre website)

June’s Quiz
Can you remember the first names of these famous playwrights? (Answers at the bottom of the newsletter. Give yourself a bonus point if you can also name any of their plays.
1. Beckett
2. O’Neill
3. Williams
4. Chekhov
5. Ibsen
6. Marlowe
7. Johnson
8. Churchill
9. Strindberg
10. Osborne
11. Fo
12. Lenkiewicz

Hoping this newsletter finds everyone safe and well.

Best wishes,

Anne Pinnock – Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Water Volume 1 .

Thank you to Alan Lewis for being so quick off the mark and researching and selecting enough water paintings for a whole volume.

He has chosen three paintings by JMW Turner:

“The Rigi”; “Venice, from the Porch of Madonna della Salute” and “Rain, Steam and Speed”.

More information, plus larger versions of the paintings are available by opening the weblinks.

Please keep sending your suggestions through until June 21st.

Comments about the paintings, or other AHA group matters are welcome at

Art on TV this week

Mon 1st June 7.30pm BBC4 The Beauty of Diagrams (Leonardo da Vinci’s Vetruvian Man)
Weds 3rd June 10pm BBC4 The Treasure Hunters (including the Terracotta Army)
Weds 3rd June 12 midnight BBC4 The High Art of the Low Countries
Sat 6th June 8.15pm Channel 5- Great Paintings of the World
All 4- Grayson’s Art Club On demand repeats of this well-thought of series

Art Exhibition News- Thank you to Hilary Wells for this information:

It’s confirmed! (National Gallery)’Titian: Love, Desire, Death’ is being extended – this unmissable, five-star exhibition will reopen when it’s safe to visit the Gallery again.We’ll be in touch with opening dates and booking information as soon as possible, depending on Government advice.

Get ready for the show with a video from Mary Beard, as she explores how Titian was inspired by classical poetry.

Fran Weden tells us “My Saturday newspaper carried a number of articles on ways of seeing/looking at art and one in particular I thought most interesting. It was about an American self-styled “art educator” named Amy Herman who, for two decades, has successfully been giving seminars called “The Art of Perception” to US Navy Seals, FBI officers, CIA intelligence analysts and CEOs of Fortune 500 companies. She has taken rookies from Scotland Yard around the Wallace Collection and led sessions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art with cops from New York City Police.

To all her pupils, she promises that studying pictures will enhance their powers of observation and communication, and transform the way they approach their jobs.

She has published a book called “Visual Intelligence: Sharpen Your Perception, Change Your Life”. It is available on Amazon and is not cheap for a paperback, but I thought some people might be interested.”

Thanks to Fran for this information

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Theatre Group – What to Watch this Week

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I hope this weekly update finds everyone safe and well.

Theatre to watch online this week:

• 1) National Theatre at Home- “This House” (You Tube)
Director: Jeremy Herrin
Cast: Reece Dinsdale, Charles Edwards, Phil Daniels

Thursday 21 May from 7pm
It’s 1974, and Britain has a hung Parliament. The corridors of Westminster ring with the sound of infighting and backstabbing as the political parties battle to change the future of the nation. This House is timely, moving, and funny insight into the workings of British politics by James Graham (Ink, ITV’s Quiz) and directed by Jeremy Herrin (People, Places and Things). This much-loved production enjoyed two sold-out National Theatre runs, a West End transfer and national tour as well as being filmed by National Theatre Live.

• 2) For those of you who were able to watch “A Streetcar Named Desire” , here is a review of the production. Does it reflect what you thought?

A Streetcar Named Desire.
National Theatre At Home/Young Vic.
4 Stars
Streaming until 28 May 2020

Review by Paul T. Davies
“Although hearing and seeing the applause at the end of a show has the ability to bring tears to my eyes because I miss live theatre so much, millions of us are grateful for streaming theatre. Not only do we get a chance to revisit productions we enjoyed, we also get another opportunity to see a show we missed, and have a week to do so. This week’s National Theatre at Home is the Young Vic and Joshua Andrew’s 2014 co-production of A Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams’ sultry classic. Director Benedict Andrews, however, doesn’t set this production in the period, rock music fills the transitions, Blanche sings Fleetwood Mac in the bath, and we loose atmosphere and location. It also underlines the problematic sexual politics of the piece. Once we move out of the 1950s, Stanley’s behaviour is even more brutish, and it’s a tricky balancing act as, although Stanley hits his wife and rapes Blanche, members of the audience, of any gender specification, must want to sit on their front porches fanning themselves and wishing for the rains to cool their desire for Stanley down.

The central trio of actors are particularly fine, with Gillian Anderson in strong form as faded Southern Belle Blanche Du Bois, crashing into her sister’s home bringing loss, dreams and defiance with her, she doesn’t want realism she wants magic. Anderson is particularly good at showing the extremes of Blanche “performing” her image and Blanche stripped of everything. It’s tricky to judge via a screening, but in places, I felt her performance was a tad one dimensional, too much play-acting, (and her voice is particularly croaky in this performance), but she is heartbreaking at the finale, looking like a vulnerable child awaiting rescue. I really felt she was suffering PTSD. Much is written about her faded grandeur, but not much about what her sister, Stella has lost. Vanessa Kirby is superb in this role, showing a woman who has adapted freely to her new circumstances, unlike Blanche who drags her deluded past around with her. In Kirby’s performance, I understood that Stella’s problem was in trying to make everyone else happy, and she was even more vulnerable for that,

Marlon Brando forged Stanley with a mould of fierce steel, and Ben Foster slips easily into that fiery mould, he exudes brutish sex appeal. (The universal time period also embraces his tattoos and hairy chest.) He does not shy away from the complications of the role, he is often thoroughly unlikeable, and the attempt to make him vulnerable has him crying for Stella in his underpants. Kirby and Forster leave you in no doubt that fucking is a cornerstone of Stella and Stanley’s relationship, and theirs is a passion Blanche had either had and lost with her young husband many years ago or has never had. Corey Johnson is excellent as sweet, kind Mitch, providing some much-needed light relief, becoming wrapped in the lies and loneliness of Blanche, until his dreams are shattered by her time at the notorious Flamingo Hotel.

Magda Wills’s fractured, revolving set, allows us to feel we are eavesdropping and witnessing these relationships, and this is a powerful production, building with sure-footed tension to that final exit of Blanche from the house. Well worth three hours of your time, just go easy on the Southern Comfort.”

I enjoyed the production, although it seemed longer than the one we saw as a group last year. I hope you had the chance to watch it.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

We hope this newsletter finds everyone safe and well.

Attached is the Volume 8 of “Put a Spring in Your Step”:
Lesley O’ Brien chose Springtime by Edvard Munch
Anne Pinnock chose The Brook and The Forest by Paul Cezanne
Thank you to everyone who took the time and trouble to research a piece of art this month and send it through.

New topic for June

The AHA Planning Team met via Zoom to discuss possible themes for the next couple of months, while we are still unable to meet in person.

For this month we have chosen the theme Water. This could include Sea; Seaside/ beaches; Lakes; Rivers; Rain; Waterfalls etc etc. We would really appreciate it if as many people as possible could choose a piece of art related to this topic and send it through to me by June 21st, ( or ) with a few sentences about why you chose it. A weblink to the painting is helpful, but otherwise, just tell me the title and artist, and I will do the rest.

If there is anything else that you would like to see the AHA group doing, please let me know.

Email Forum
I am really enjoying reading the comments on the email forum. Thank you to those who have been brave enough to give it a try. The direct link to the forum is . I will aim to include this link in each email I send out.

This Month’s Art Quiz (Answers at end of newsletter)
1. Which brand of soup features in Andy Warhol’s soup can series?
2. Who was the 2019 Turner prize winner?
o Lawrence Abu Hamdan
o Helen Cammock
o Oscar Murillo
o Tai Shani
3. A bronze bust of a Portuguese footballer was mocked online after it was revealed in 2017 – who was the statue meant to resemble?
4. What was the name of Banksy’s 2015 pop-up exhibition in Weston-Super-Mare?
5. Which Charlie’s Angel star is also an artist, whose paintings have been shown at the Lincoln Centre in New York?
6. Which British artist is known for an exhibit which featured a tiger shark preserved in formaldehyde?
7. Lucian Freud painted a naked portrait of which English supermodel in 2002?
8. The Starry Night is a painting by which artist?
9. Andrew Wyeth’s 1948 painting ‘Christina’s World’ is of a real house in which US state?
10. Artist Richard Hamilton attended evening classes at which London art university?
11. Which American artist created the blue and red Barack Obama “Hope” poster?
12. Where was Frida Kahlo born?

Royal Academy Virtual Exhibitions ( )

I didn’t manage to spot any Art on TV this week that I thought worth sharing. However, Hilary Wells has kindly passed on the details below of the Royal Academy’s virtual offerings. Thank you to her.
In 60-seconds: Shonibare’s Cheeky Little Astronomer “Looking into the stars, there’s something aspirational, forward-looking and magical about the piece.” Uncover the multicultural influences in Royal Academician, Yinka Shonibare’s sculpture.
In 60-seconds: Meredith Frampton’s Still Life A tape measure, stone head and wild flowers… This mysterious painting is full of contrasting symbolism. Discover more in this bite-sized video.
Learn something new with RA podcasts Catch up on recordings of events celebrating our 2018 exhibition, Charles I: King and Collector, which reunited the extraordinary art collection of Charles I.
Go behind the scenes with Exhibition on Screen In case you missed it, we recently shared a sneak peek into the making of two Hockney exhibitions here at the RA: A Bigger Picture from 2012 and 82 Portraits and One Still-Life from 2016.

10 art novels to escape with
Settle in for our top ten novels inspired by art and artists.

Fancy some more art-inspired media to while away the weekend? Why not try our pick of the 10 artist movies to stream.

Looking forward to seeing everyone’s “Water” choices, and hope this topic doesn’t bring a change in the weather (although it would save us having to water the garden so much!).
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Quiz Answers
1. Campbell
2. Trick question: the prize was split four ways between them
3. Cristiano Ronaldo
4. Dismaland
5. Lucy Liu
6. Damien Hirst
7. Kate Moss
8. Vincent van Gogh
9. Maine
10. Central Saint Martin’s College of Arts and Design (known as Saint Martin’s School of Art at the time)
11. Shepard Fairey
12. Mexico

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group Members,

This week’s Theatre to view Online:

Not a large amount spotted for this week, unfortunately.

However, from Thursday 21st May for 7 days, the National Theatre online production is “A Streetcar named Desire”, starring Gillian Anderson. (YouTube- National Theatre at Home)

I thought that this may be of particular interest to those of the group who went to see this play last summer in the Lace Market. I remember commenting to Eve that I had found it quite a disturbing play to watch. The song “Strange Fruit” was used as part of the soundtrack, if I remember rightly, which added even more to the atmosphere.

Let me know what you think of the National Theatre’s production, compared with the one our group saw.

The series of Andrew LLoyd Webber musicals has now finished. Which did you particularly enjoy and which were you not so impressed by? Do let me know and I will circulate your thoughts (anonymously, if you wish!

Thank you to those members who have written to me about their most memorable theatre productions. Keep sending them through and I will circulate them in June’s group newsletter.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Temporary Theatre Group Facilitator and Joint Groups Coordinator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 7 of “Put a Spring in Your Step”.

Sue Blackley has chosen “Meadow and Shore” by Angie Lewin
Gill Martin has chosen “The Garden in Spring, Eragny” by Pissaro
Sue Ward has chosen “Blossom” by Isa Jobling

Apologies to Sue Ward that I was unable to get her photo of the Jobling painting to appear in the correct orientation in the document (it was correct when saved it in a folder). If anyone knows the answer to this problem, please let me know. The same thing happened with Karin Williams Roses earlier in this topic.

At the moment I only have one more painting to circulate for Vol 8. Another 2 would be great, if anyone else has the time to send through a suggestion (a weblink is not essential).

Next month’s topic will be announced at the end of the coming weekend.

Email Forum:

Thank you to everyone who has been brave enough to trail the email forum. It is a learning process for all of us, but some really interesting comments are now appearing.

When you reply to a comment, the site should give you the option to “Reply to the sender”, or “Reply to the Whole Group”, depending on which is more appropriate.

Suggested Exhibition:
Cranach: Artist and Innovator at Compton Verney

You can take an online peek at his exotic mythological temptresses or look at his woodcut illustrations to the Bible of his close friend Martin Luther. The show also explores his contemporary legacy.

On the same site is a seres of short films exploring how material has influenced artists over the ages (“Fabric- Touch and Identity”)

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 6 of “Put a Spring in Your Step” . What a lovely variety of paintings are being suggested.

There is still one more week to send through your choice- if you are unable to attach a link to your choice, just tell me the name of the painting and artist, plus a couple of sentences (or more) about why you have chosen it, and I will do the rest. Don’t forget, you can choose a Spring painting, or a piece of art that you find uplifting.
• Janet Hoult has chosen “Double Vision” by Edwina Sandys
• Fran Weden has chosen “A Convent Garden” by John Leech
• Dorothy Coombes has chosen “Cheeky Chicks” by Winifred Nicholson
It would be lovely to hear people’s views of these via the email forum

Art On TV/ Radio (thanks to Lindsay Litton for the Radio info)
Sunday 17th 12.45 after midnight BBC4 Oceans Apart- Art and the Pacific
Mon 18th 7pm BBC4 The Joy of Painting (recommended by Jenny Timmins via the email forum)
Thurs 21st 11.50pm BBC4 The Art of Gothic

Radio (the following were broadcast last week, so should be available on the BBC Sounds App):
Girl with a Pearl Earring- daily at 10.45am and repeated at 7.45pm Radio 4
Holbein’s Skull (about the painting “The Ambassadors”) Tues 12th May 2.15pm Radio 4

Recommended Virtual Gallery Tours and Exhibitions (thank you to Janet Hunt and Hilary Wells for the following ):
VisitFlanders YouTube
Van Eyck ‘An Optical Revolution ‘
Vermeer, Rembrandt etc

Musee d’Orsay
French masters Inc Cezanne, Monet

Metropolitan Museum New York
Exhibition of Cezanne landscapes

John Paul Getty
Online exhibition, videos etc
Visual tours of the world’s best museums and art galleries

Your weekly art escape | View in browser

Discover Manet’s portraiture
Each week we’re closed, we’re coming straight to your inbox with a dose of art, inspiration and escapism. This week, we take you behind the scenes of our exhibition, Manet – Portraying Life. Back in 2013, our Main Galleries were filled with the paintings of this enigmatic — and sometimes controversial — artist. Manet’s portraits of friends, family and famous figures of the day give us a glimpse into 19th century Paris. Discover more and find out what it takes to put on an exhibition like this, in this feature length film courtesy of Exhibition on Screen.
National Art Pass

Snap up the best photography exhibitions online now. In this week’s round-up of digital museum experiences, we zoom in on Cecil Beaton’s Bright Young Things at the National Portrait Gallery, Wildlife Photographer of the Year at the Natural History Museum, and more.

Start exploring

Be inspired

Rediscover old favourites

Feeling nostalgic? Explore an exhibition from the past. Join historian Jacky Klein on a tour of Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs, Tate Modern’s notable 2014 blockbuster, and lose yourself in Matisse’s colourful late-period creations.

Watch now

Stay social

Have a museum moment

It’s officially Museum Week – seven days, seven hashtags to celebrate museums – and today’s theme is ‘museum moments’. We’ve chosen a rather memorable one to share – get the inside scoop from Anneka Rice in the new episode of our podcast, Meet Me at the Museum, and follow #MuseumMomentsMW to hear the moment for yourself!

Listen here

Best wishes,

Anne and the AHA Team

Long Walks

Hi All,

I hope you are keeping safe and well. Many thanks for your replies to my email concerning the over 70s and the lockdown. 9 members of the group kindly sent me their comments and several useful articles from various publications. As you might expect, all the comments were very sensible with a strong leaning towards us being in charge of our own risks rather than subject to some arbitrary age cut-off.

My personal comments on the current situation relate to when and how we might be able to resume some form of long distance walking. As I said in my email pre-lockdown, I had hoped that we could walk with a moderate number in a group having travelled in our own cars (no sharing), taking our own food and drink, keeping the designated 2m apart and wearing masks and gloves if advised. The lockdown obviously prevented this possibility but the proposed cautious easing in the near future does offer a glimmer of hope. We are not quite there yet as we are only allowed to meet one other person from another household. However, we can hope that things will improve and that we can meet in small groups whilst keeping to the rule on social distancing. I think the government has heeded the general consensus of not setting different rules for older people and will just give general advice regarding the risks. From the published data, it is fairly obvious that, regardless of how fit we are, older people have a weaker immune system and are therefore at increased risk if they catch the virus. All our actions in life are subject to some degree of risk but its acceptance should be determined by the individual unless it affects other people. Anne and I hope to be walking with some of you in the not too distant future even if it is at 2m separation.


Theatre Group – What to Watch this Week

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I have spotted the following theatre productions to watch online this week:

Weds May 13th- 7.30pm for 7 days-You Tube Donmar Warehouse-” Midnight Your Time” by Adam Brace
Thurs May 14th for 7 days- YouTube- National Theatre- “The Barber Shop Chronicles” by Inua Ellans
Fri May 15th 7pm for 48 hours- You Tube- Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Cats” (NB It was announced that this is the last of the series of Lloyd Webber screenings)

Plus a Lockdown Project:

Actors read their favourite Momologues and Poems- (

Please do send through any more reports about your most memorable theatre visit.

Hope you are able to enjoy something from this selection and that this email finds everyone safe and well.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 5 of “Put a Spring in Your Step” attached:

Felicity Harrison has chosen “Primavera” by Botticelli
Hilary Sutherland has chosen “The Arrival of Spring” by David Hockney
Eve Gurd has chosen “The Pretty Baa Lambs” by Ford Maddox Brown
I have enough selections for another two volumes, but will then need more to keep the theme going for the whole month. Please keep sending them through any time before Monday 25th May.

Email Forum
Everyone in AHA who has an email address should have now received an invitation to join the new io email forum. If yours has gone astray in the ether somewhere, please let me know, and I will resend it.
I am delighted that we now have a substantial number of members signed up- that should make it worthwhile, without anyone being bombarded with messages. Please do email through any comments to , or reply to someone else’s message.

Art Online
AHA members have been so kind in sharing news about art to see online, I thought it better to start sending through some of the information now, rather than wait for the next main newsletter. We are so lucky to have such a supportive group.
It is very difficult to ensure the hyperlinks work via the U3A Beacon system, so I am afraid you may have to Google to see everything.

Explore Chatsworth from home (thanks to Hilary Wells for all the following info)
Step into Chatsworth virtually from the comfort of your home, and explore our award-winning multimedia guide, now available online for the first time. It features stories and personal insights from our experts, plus facts and figures about the house and works of art.


Immerse yourself in art with the brand new series of our podcast, Meet Me at the Museum. Series four premiered last week with a fantastic episode from presenter Mel Giedroyc, who visited Pitzhanger Manor & Gallery in London before lockdown, while in the latest episode broadcaster and DJ Edith Bowman takes us to Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Listen out for upcoming episodes every Monday, and join Instagram influencer Katy Hessel and broadcaster Anneka Rice exploring museums they love.

Tate Modern:
Explore community, connection and memory with the Congolese choreographer and dance artist Faustin Linyekula.

Filmed before our galleries closed, this exclusive online performance takes you inside Tate Modern’s subterranean tanks.

Watch now

Happy online exploring,

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 4 of “Put a Spring in Your Step” attached. In it we have three different Van Gogh paintings:

Ingrid McIvor has chosen “Pink Peach Tree”
Lindsay Litton has chosen “Tree Trunks in Grass” and
Jean Brookbanks has chosen “Almond Blossom”
Please do keep sending your choices through anytime until Sunday May 24th. There has been so much variety so far.

Email Forum:

I just have the last few remaining invitations to the new email forum to send out.

It would be lovely to start getting people’s comments on the selected Spring artwork shared via the forum. Just send an email to (or “reply” to someone else’s email) for the others who have joined to see your comments.

Art on TV this week (rather thin pickings this week, unfortunately)
Tues 12th May 8pm BBC4 Life Drawing Live
Tues 12th May 10pm BBC4 The Genius of Leonardo Da Vinci

New Online Exhibition:

The Ashmolean’s “Young Rembrandt” goes online at

Thank you to the kind members who are sending through more details of exhibitions available online. I will aim to send out these in the next email, as there are too many to wait until the next main newsletter.

It;s great to have so many members supporting sharing of Spring artworks, as well as news on the art front. Thank you all for your support in these difficult times.

Best wishes and enjoy the sunshine,
Anne and the AHA team

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Outings Group Members,

Please find Theatre Group May 2020 Newsletter attached. Thank you to those who took the time to send contributions.

I realise our traditional meeting day is Tuesday, but there is more information available to report re the weekend’s choices to watch, if we wait until Wednesday to update people.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Groups Coordinator and temporary Theatre Group Coordinator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Please find Volume 3 of “Put a Spring in your step” attached.

Many thanks to Karen Attwood, who researched enough paintings for a whole volume to herself, which is lovely.

She has chosen Hokusai’s “Great Wave” (+ other paintings by him) and

Beryl Cook’s “Ladies who lunch”

We have already received more contributions this month than we did all together last month. Please do keep sending them through. I do love seeing them.e

Email forum

Thank you to those members who have been brave enough to try out the new email forum, which is now working up and running (even though, I must admit, the technology seems strange to start off with).

I will continue to send invitations to join the forum to the rest of the members over the next few days. It is quite a slow process, as I have to type in everyone’s email addresses one by one.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Volume 2 of “Put a Spring in your Step” art is attached:

Sue Smith has chosen a photograph by Andy Goldsworthy and a Stained Glass Window designed by Matisse.

Maureen Moffatt chose “Nurturing Begets Nurturing” by Kristy Goggio.

New Email Forum
I have now sent out invitations to about a third of the AHA group to join the new email forum, and am delighted that so many people have accepted. I will send out the remainder ASAP.

I suggest that we use the forum to share comments about the art that we are sharing, or other AHA related messages.

I think it is best if you continue to email me your actual art choices, so that I can circulate them in batches as before: otherwise, those who choose not to join the forum won’t be able to see what has been sent. However, please let me know if you have a better plan- all ideas welcome.

The forum is now ready to start to using. All you need to do is to send an email message to Others can then reply with their own comments. You can add attachments to your email if you wish.

Thanks to Carol Spicer for sending through the link below to people’s recreations of famous paintings (apologies that I missed including it in last week’s AHA newsletter): A friend sent the following website details – absolutely brilliant. Of course, you might have seen it already, but anyway, here it is. Carol Spicer

Art on TV this week
Sat May 2nd 10.30pm BBC2 Lee Miller: A Life on the Front Line
Tues 5th 9pm Sky Arts/Now TV Tintoretto: A Rebel in Venice
Tues 5th 9pm BBC4 Andrew Marr on Churchill: Blood, Sweat and Oil Paint
Tues 5th 10pm BBC4 The Art of WW11
Weds 6th 11pm BBC4 St Petersburg: An Art Lovers’ Guide
Finally, many thanks for being such a committed, active group. All your contributions are much appreciated. Do keep on sending through your Spring/ uplifting art choices.
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

U3A Long Walks 2nd Quiz

I had three replies to this second quiz. The answers are given below together with the OS grid references. Here are the 5 photographs to refresh your memories:

Yet again John Dubbury has taken top spot with only one wrong answer. The bottles of brandy are piling up on his doorstep!! Thanks again to David Gilbert for the photographs and answers. I’m sure he has plenty more. I shall also look to see if I have any suitable photographs of my own but they will not be up to David’s standard.

Regards, keep safe,


1 View from the café on the Longshaw Estate towards Higger Tor. I can’t give you an exact map reference, but you may be able to work one out if required. We did this walk on 8th October 2015, and I think that it was one of yours! At the end of the walk, we stopped and sat at the tables outside the café, and I took this shot at 4.08 p.m. (Mike’s best guess SK 264799)
2 Headstone Viaduct, Monsal Dale. The viaduct is SK182715.
3 Nine Ladies Stone Circle, Stanton Moor. SK249635.
4 Willoughby Almshouses, Cossall. SK483423.
5 Climbing up Padley Gorge! (MIke’s approximate guess SK 256797)

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group Members,

Thank you to those who have sent me a couple of sentences about a memorable play that you have seen at the theatre in the past (Whether it has been with U3A, or independently).

A few more would be very welcome, and I will send them out in place of the Theatre Group meeting, which would have been next Tuesday, May 4th.

Online theatre this weekend:
I have seen the following advertised:
Thurs April 30th 7pm- National Theatre via YouTube-Frankenstein
Fri May 1st 7pm- Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Celebration concert from the Royal Albert Hall
Sat May 2nd- (available for 24 hours)
Until May 24th- Royal Opera House – Gloriana (viaYouTube)
York Theatre Royal- BBCiplayer- Wise Children
From May 1st- Almeida- BBCiplayer- Albion
The Curve, the Butler Saw
Chichester festival Theatre-Flowers for Mrs Harris
Hampstead Theatre- Drawing the Line

So much choice- no excuse to get bored!

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Joint Groups Coordinator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

Click on the links for AHA April 2020 Newsletter and Spring Volume 1

I’m afraid I have had difficulty in getting the video at the end of the newsletter to successful ooen through Beacon attachments. If the link doesn’t work, please Google “Quarantine through Art video”!

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

New AHA Group Email Forum

Dear AHA Members,

When we were choosing portraits to share last month, I received a lot of really interesting comments about the selections that were being circulated. It was such a shame that there wasn’t a time efficient way to share those comments with all AHA members.

We are therefore setting up a new email forum which will enable us to share all our comments with other AHA group members. Membership of the forum is restricted to Beeston U3A AHA group- no-one else will be able to see our comments.

Chris O Brien, one of our AHA members, has been testing a forum out with the U3A Family History Group, and it has proved successful. Celia Billau is also testing it with the American History Group.

All AHA members will be invited to join the forum: however, as we are a large group, it will take me a while to get invitations to everyone. Do let me know if you are very keen to join, and I will make sure you get an invitation sooner rather than later.

When you receive the invitation for the email forum, then, if you would like to join, just either reply to the email, or click “accept the invitation, which will take you to the website that hosts the forum, where you click “+Join the group”. You don’t need a password.

Please be aware that your email address will be visible to other members of the AHA forum, so joining the forum is taken as your agreeing to this. Please do not forward any emails to anyone outside the group.

If you feel that you would be interested in joining the forum, I am attaching a document with more details about how it all works. I realise it all sounds quite complex to start with, but I think will be worth it, especially while we cannot meet physically. Do consider giving it a try. Click on Email Forum Detailed Instructions April 2020

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock

Theatre Group – What to Watch this Week

Dear Theatre Group members,

I hope this email finds everyone safe and well. I watched Phantom of the Opera last week, and I agree with Janis Patterson that it was wonderful.

Don’t forget, I am collecting your memories of favourite theatre productions over the years (either U3A or otherwise) to share in this group’s May newsletter. Just a couple of sentences will be enough (unless you want to write more). Send them to me by replying to this email, or emailing me at

What to watch this week:

The National Theatre production is Twelfth Night (Thurs 23rd for 7 days- YouTube)
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical is Love Never Dies- sequel to Phantom of the Opera (Friday 24th for 48 hrs- YouTube) Hope it really is 48 hours this week- Andrew LW’s own site says it is!!
The Metropolitan Opera is streaming:
Thurs 23rd- Lehar’s The Merry Widow
Fri 24th – Verdi’s La Traviata
Sat 25th 1pm- An At-Home Gala
Sun 26th- Rossini’s La Cenerentola
The Royal Court Theatre is showing Cyprus Avenue free online until April 26th

So much to choose from under such sad circumstances,

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock

Art History and Appreciation New Theme for the Month

Introduction to Theme

Dear AHA Members,

Put a Spring in Your Step!

It’s time to introduce next month’s theme and we are asking members to find a piece of art work either on the subject of “Spring”, or something that generally “Lifts your Spirits”.

Once you have chosen it, please write a few sentences about why it is your choice and email them through to me anytime before Sunday May 17th. If you can also provide an online link to the artwork that would be great, but if not, just tell me the artist and title.

I will then circulate your choice to the rest of the group, a few pieces at a time.

We are in good company with this theme, as David Hockney has been doing something on the same lines. Thanks to Felicity Harrison for providing this link to show you his work:

To cheer you up, Fran Weden has sent me a delightful photo to lift our spirits, which is attached on the next page to share with you.

I love the caption (very apt for current times!)

“Life isn’t about waiting for the Storm to Pass…it’s Learning to Dance in the Rain!”

Next week would have been our monthly AHA meeting, so I will start sharing your choices then, as well as sending our monthly AHA newsletter. Thank you to everyone who has already sent contributions for that. Any further snippets would be very welcome.

Finally, a special welcome to our two recently joined members- Jean Brookbanks and Maureen Moffatt.

Hoping this email finds everyone safe and well.
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

I am pleased to attach our final portrait of the month: Volume 7 Christina of Denmark

Thank you to Leonore Slade, who has chosen Hans Holbein’s “Christine of Denmark”.

An enormous thank you to all members who have sent through their portrait suggestions. It seems a lifetime ago that our March meeting should have taken place. We have had to adapt to new circumstances very quickly, and I think the AHA group has done so as successfully as possible.

Janet Hoult, who has planned to lead our March meeting, and chosen this topic says: “I’d like to add my thanks to Anne’s to all those who’ve sent in portraits, & say how pleased I’ve been to see your choices. & also say sorry to those members who would have enjoyed attending the March meeting, all those weeks ago it seems now, with their choice but couldn’t for whatever reason put it on line.
& I for one am looking forward to the next subject, Janet”.

The new topic will be sent out on the next day or two.

Finally, an update on Art on TV this week:

Mon 20th April 7pm BBC4- The Joy of painting
Weds 22nd 11pm BBC4- Amsterdam- An Art Lovers’ Guide
Weds 22nd 12 midnight BBC4- Peggy Guggenheim- Art Addict
Weds 22nd 1.30 (after midnight) BBC4- Dwarfs in Art- A new perspective
Sat 25th 9.15pm BBC2- Becoming Matisse

Thank you for your continuing support for the group in these challenging times.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team

Art History and Appreciation

Dear All,

Click on Portraits Volume 6 :

Ingrid Mc Ivor has chosen The Milkmaid by Vermeer

Eve Gurd has chosen The Lady with the Ermine by Leonardo Da Vinci

These are the last of the ones that members have already sent, though I will circulate any that people send to me over the weekend.

Janet Hunt has kindly sent through some information on what is currently available online from different galleries. We will be giving some more detailed information about one or two of these exhibitions to link with our next topic (to be announced next week).

She says “I’ve just received my Artist Magazine and put together some information for AHA re exhibitions. Some exhibitions are available to see online and other galleries are showing their collections. uk
www.british museum. org

Patchings Art Festival at Calverton has been cancelled until next year –dates July 8-11,
2021–something to look forward to! !!”

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team

Theatre Group

Dear All,

Just an update re this weekend’s Andrew Lloyd Weber musical:

Thanks to Janis Patterson, who has informed me that it is “Phantom of the Opera”.

As usual, this is free to stream for 48 hours from 7.00pm this Friday, on the YouTube channel “The Show Must Go On”.


Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I will try to send a brief update email every Tuesday, as well as produce a monthly newsletter at the beginning of each month, while the group is unable to meet.

Frank recommends the production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest on Marquee TV

I really enjoyed Jesus Christ Superstar streamed on YouTube at the weekend. This was the more recent Arena production, rather than the original, and was spectacular. Andrew Lloyd Weber himself appeared at the end to make a speech.

What is on this week?

It has not yet been announced which Andrew Lloyd Weber is to be screened next weekend, so you need to keep checking.

The Globe Theatre is streaming free screenings of 6 Shakespeare plays on their YouTube Channel. They started on April 6th and will be available for 14 days from the date of their release, so you still have time to catch them all over the next couple of months.

The plays are: Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Two Noble Kinsmen, The Winter’s Tale and The Merry Wives of Windsor.

May’s Theatre Group Newsletter

What have you enjoyed watching (or not)? What are your favourite theatre productions that Theatre Group has been to see? Please send me your comments/ suggestions for May’s newsletter to All contributions gratefully received by the end of April.

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

I am pleased to be able to attach Portraits Volume 5.

I have chosen Caravaggio’s Young Sick Bacchus

Sue Blackley has chosen Frida Kahlo’s self portrait

Jane Smith has chosen her Several times Great-Grandmother

Thank you so much to everyone that has taken the trouble to send their choices through. There is still one more week to go before we announce next month’s topic, so please do carry on sending your portraits through until next Sunday, April 19th. If it is too much of a challenge to provide a link to your portrait, don’t worry- just send through the artist and title, plus a few sentences about why you chose it. Members can easily Google to see the actual portrait.

Art on TV this week:
Mon 13th 9pm BBC4- The World’s most Beautiful Eggs- The Genius of Carl Faberge
Tues 14th 12 midnight BBC4- Basquiat- Rage to Riches
Weds 15th 12 midnight BBC4- Anthony Gormely-How Art Began
Thurs 16th 8pm Channel 4- Grayson’s Art Club

I hope you have managed to have a good, though strange Easter Weekend,

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group Members,

1) Thank you very much to the members who have sent through details of interesting things to watch during this sad time of theatre closure:

Anne Orton has shared information about Amazon Prime and the Royal Albert Hall
Frank Parry has shared information about Marquee TV
Jane Smith has shared information from Nottingham Playhouse

The document, Theatre Group April 9th Update, gives full details, with links where possible (some of these may need to be “right-clicked” and opened, rather than clickable directly.

2) I watched the National Theatre’s free screening of “One Man, Two Guvnors”. Okay, it looked a little dated in parts, but it was fascinating to watch so soon after our group visit to The Lace Market Theatre to see Carlo Goldoni’s “The Servant of Two Masters”. The relationship between the two productions was so clear, especially the historical “commedia dell ‘arte” style.
Has anyone else any comments about this play, or any others that you have watched. I’m sure the rest of the group would be very pleased to have your recommendations (or ones to avoid!)

Please do keep the ideas and comments coming through, and I will share with group members.

With Best Wishes for the coming Easter Weekend and hope everyone is still safe and well.

Anne Pinnock- Joint Groups Coordinator

Art History and Appreciation

Dear AHA Members,

I am pleased to attach the next selection of portraits:

Gill Martin chose “Berthe Morisot with a Bouquet of Violets” by Edouard Manet

Jill Davies chose “The Laughing Cavalier” by Frank Hals
Alison Wilson chose “Leonardo and the Nude Mona Lisa”

Portraits Volume 4

Please do keep sending them to me anytime up to April 19th.

As a midweek bonus, Maggie Roberts has shared the following from the Royal Academy Website:

She says “On the RA website, they have 60 second introductions to some Impressionist paintings. I started with Gauguin, but then my eye was really caught by Manet’s Woman with a Jug. I recommend this in terms of a portrait- only a 60 second blurb.”


Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team

Theatre Group

Dear Theatre Group Members,

I do hope that some of you were able to watch NT’s “One Man, Two Guvnors” (it is still available until Weds 8th) and/or Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.

I said that I would report back to you again, following my email last week, asking for suggestions of drama to watch during the current lockdown.

Unfortunately, very few ideas have been sent to me. However, I can tell you about a couple of opera possibilities:

Opera Vision (a freeview streaming platform) has announced an expanded programme (

The Metropolitan Opera has come up with a series of “encore” presentations. (

Otherwise, it’s Jane Eyre (National Theatre) on Thurs April 9th and Jesus Christ Superstar on Fri April 10th (as mentioned in last week’s email).

As no one has offered to be a point of contact for sharing news, I am willing to continue to pass any suggestions sent to me, on to the whole group for the time being.

Please also let me know if you would prefer to be removed from the Theatre Group membership list at this point.

Please do send through any suggestions you hear about (by replying to this email, or contacting me at

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Joint Groups Coordinator

Current Groups Situation 3rd April 2020

34 groups now reporting some planned activity

The information below is copied from Celia’s excellent Bulletin, sent 2/4/20.

Updates since the bulletin was published (gleaned from various sources!) are in green italics. 

American History: currently exploring if members would like to meet on Zoom and Richard has offered to give his presentations which have been used in the past. Celia Billau

Art History and Appreciation (2 groups): while unable to meet face to face, sending a monthly newsletter to members, with light-hearted, art-related activities to try, such as virtual tours of art galleries, and art quizzes. Also, now a monthly focus for members to research and circulate. New members welcome on either a short or long-term basis. Anne Pinnock

Birdwatching:the birdwatching group have definitely had our wings clipped but not to be de- feated I’ve organised a Lockdown List. Group members are sending me their sightings from their gardens or daily exercise walks and I’m creating a weekly list of sightings which I then email to group members to help keep the juices flowing. At the end of week 1 our list stands at 34 species and with Spring migration under waye should soon be adding more. Pete Sadler

Book Group 3 (Murder): continuing reviewing the books but via email. A few of us have also formed a WhatsApp group to send on comments faster and more efficiently. Not everyone wants/can do this: personal choice, no smartphone etc. Helen Stewart

Bridge: Weekly email circulated and working on a Bridge terminology quiz Pauline Bright

Calligraphy : art enthusiasts could sign up to ArtSpeak. They have a thought for the day and a programme of interesting virtual visits. Check out the web site: Apparently Stephen Fry, President of MIND, suggested learning Calligraphy online to help with keeping well mentally. See the online videos and suggestions online for help and ideas. For those of you new to the art of beautiful writing, “make friends with your pens” and have a go!” Jenny Castledine

Chess:the chess group has moved online, but currently only 4 of our 16 players wish to play this way, so if anyone else wants to play they will be welcome. I have contacted Neil Taylor at Leicester U3A, as they have a chess group. He says that if any of our groups wish to link up with Leicester online , he is willing to help. I also believe that someone runs a U3A online chess league, so I have contacted them and the main U3A chess adviser to see what information they have. I will let you know what I find out. Neil Sheffield

Crosswords: Crosswords group are working towards meeting via Zoom Kathy Shipway

Exploring Wisdom has arranged to meet on-line on Tuesday 31st March at 10.30 am. We will be looking at the topic of ‘A spiritual guide to looking after our mental

health at a time like this.’ Any U3A member is welcome to come along and join in. It is not religion based so is open to anyone. Richard Eddleston

Family History: Testing an email forum with selected members of the group. Could be very useful with other groups, as it will reduce the work of the group facilitator in collating responses. Will keep us (AP and KS) updated  Chris O Brien

French Conversation (not for beginners): had trouble with different Zoom links, so I’ve not tried to play any recordings in French. However, I am sending 2 articles a week in French to members for their interest (and education) via Beacon. Ivan Jones

German: Continuing online Comment on Facebook

Lunch Group 1: As we are a lunch group so we only get together once a month over lunch. However, I am planning to send out our regular update email this weekend just to keep in touch with everyone during this difficult time and to tell them what we have got planned for when we can hopefully get together again. Shirley Cooper

Music Appreciation: The Music Appreciation Group is continuing to run on a virtual basis. Each month we have a theme and members choose a song or tune based on this theme. This month it was “Seasons.” People chose: Springtime of the Year -The Cambridge Singers Autumn Leaves – Nat King Cole Turn, turn, turn – The Byrds The Summer Wind – Madeleine Peyroux Autumn Carol – Black Dyke Mills River of Dreams Hayley Westenra A Song of the Weather – Flanders and Swann Windy City -from Oklahoma They send their choices to me and I collate them and even add a short musical ex- tract if I can find one. I then circulate everyone with all the information. Whilst not as good as sitting together it does mean the group continues to listen to music chosen by the group. Roger Coombs

The Philosophy and Religion Group has, like most groups, had to shut down its normal discussion programme for the duration. However, since much of our activity is just talking and speculating, the Group is probably a good candidate to head online, so we are currently trying to get everyone onto We’ve had a trial run, which seemed promising; we hope to try a full meeting in the near future, and will let you know if we succeed. Dave Smith

Photography are sharing photos from their collections, and this is coordinated by Adrian.

Play Reading: Members have shared personal stories of the best (or worst) plays they ever saw and memorable events with photos, of personal stage experience. Celia Billau

Poetry Appreciation: is reading poetry and then discussing the choices by email. I am hoping that more of the members will discuss their favourite poems this way. It would be good if I as the leader could make everyone aware of each other’s email. At the moment everything has to come through me. Joan Whiting (I have responded to Joan, and explained how this can be achieved -Anne P)

Quiz: Janet and Tony Truman have been sending out a quick quiz to their members with the answers being sent out the following week, along with a new quiz.

Scrabble: Looking into online programmes for continuing playing Scrabble (Words?) Kathy Shipway

Scottish Country Dancing: I’m sending the Scottish Country Dancing group links to videos of people dancing particular dances, together with the instructions and asking them to try dancing it in an imaginary set. Sue Morrison

Singing For Fun: This can be done anytime, anywhere. Just don’t upset the neighbours! – Margaret Johnson

Spanish Conversation : Irene Brown informs us that members of the Spanish group are emailing news in Spanish to each other. Everyone is well.

Theatre Visits: Anne Pinnock has emailed the group to suggest current opportunities for watching theatre productions online, and asking for a volunteer from group to take on this role for the foreseeable future.

Understanding the Landscape is taking the opportunity to widen the scope of the Group to include the environment. This will include the effect of human interaction on the landscape, environmental issues, the effect of climate change on what we see, etc. We will rename the group Landscape and Environment. I intend to send an occasional newsletter, hopefully containing links to stories that I find relevant, and hope that others might find these interesting. If anyone would like to join the group, please email me on Richard Dinsdale

Walks (Long): Consulting members on possible ideas eg sharing info on walks available on video. Also using spare time to collate database of past walks to support new Long Walks 2 group when they get going. Mike Allery

Wine Appreciation: The wine groups are sharing tasting notes on wines they have drunk. These are being collated and sent out weekly by John (groups 1&3) and Adrian (groups 2&4)

Writing for Pleasure: are running a series of 2-weekly challenges with different topic each time and a “winner”. All entries are being placed on our website If anyone wants to do some writing from our U3A e.g. reflections on our situation, poems, short stories, then I shall set aside a page dedicated to this on the website.

Non-group members can use the 2-weekly challenge topics if they so wish.

(information on the website) but they will not be “judged” in the way that the group’s pieces will be. Please highlight our website – not everyone outside the group knows it even exists despite rolling notices. There’s much to read and amuse on it. Helen Stewart

Yoga:The Yoga group leaders have obtained permission from all of us and people are recommending Yoga videos to each other. A lot of the group are following one particular Yoga teacher. Kathryn Coupland

Yoga – self help : Self-help yoga group have just had a very successful yoga practice using Zoom. I am stiff but feel much more cheerful after seeing and talking to the others and having a few laughs. Kathy Shipway

News from Kathy, One of Our Group Co-ordinators 28 March

The Wine Groups are sharing tasting notes on wines they have drunk. These are being collated and sent out weekly by John (Groups 1&3) and Adrian (Groups 2&4).

The Photography Group are sharing photos from their collections, coordinated by Adrian.

Self Help Yoga and Crosswords are working towards meeting via Zoom.

More news when we see how these work.

Let’s Keep Theatre Group Going!

I know that you will have been as disappointed as I was to hear the news that Eve no longer wishes to continue as Theatre Visits Group Facilitator. I am sure that you have already expressed your gratitude to her for all the hard work she has undertaken on behalf of the group over the last 9 years, and have fond (or otherwise!) memories of the productions she has organized for us to see. She has certainly given her “pound of flesh”!

I can understand how the current situation, which sees theatres closed for the foreseeable future may seem like the last straw.

At times like this, I think we have to take advantage of the little “silver linings” that appear.

One of these is various free screenings of past theatre productions.

I think it could be useful to share details of these as a group, firstly to give us information about what to watch, and secondly, to keep us together as a group until things become more normal and we are able to meet and plan the future.

These are screenings that I am aware of:

National Theatre- free screenings on their official YouTube Channel- Every Thursday 7pm (+ for 7 days afterwards):
April 2nd One man, two Guvnors
April 9th Jane Eyre
April 16th Treasure Island
April 23rd Twelfth Night

Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals- free screenings on YouTube “The Show Must Go On” channel- Every Friday 7pm (+for 48hours afterwards):
April 3rd Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat
April 10th Jesus Christ Superstar

What else do you know about that I don’t? If you let me know, I’ll forward these to members next Tuesday, which would have been our monthly meeting.

Is anyone in the group willing to take on the role of collating information over the next month. They would need to be willing to give their email address to the group.

I will then send the collated information out to members. Please contact me if you can help.

Let’s Keep Theatre Group going, so that Eve’s hard work has not been in vain!

Best wishes,
Anne Pinnock- Joint Groups Co-ordinator

Long Walks

Hi All,

You are probably aware that in our “Lockdown” situation several Beeston U3A groups have set up various methods of maintaining contact through social media etc. I am struggling to think of what we could do in the Long Walks group due to it being mainly an outdoor activity. Alan Beale has sent me the suggestion of doing virtual walks using YouTube and entering “Dovedale walks” to see enjoyable videos. No doubt more local walks could be found using other appropriate names. However, apart from swapping video titles, this would not give any social interaction. We could set up a forum so that members could see all the postings of other members but I’m not sure what we would put on it. The only thing I can think of is to use a forum to suggest new walks in the hope that we might be allowed out to play in the not too distant future! As part of the effort by the group coordinators to set up a second Long Walks group, I am in the process of listing basic data of nearly all of the walks the group has completed since it started in 2011. We hope to put this list on the web site for all to see and as a source for others to use. Group members might like to come up with basic outlines for future walks which I could plot in detail on my computer. Any suggestions with regard to what we might do to maintain contact would be welcome.



Art History and Appreciation

5 April 2020

Dear All,

Unfortunately, I have realised that 2 of the links in yesterday’s Portraits email would not work (the joys of technology!), so I have had to find another way of sending them.

Attached is Dorothy’s portrait choice with reasons (David Hockney) and
Also Janet’s portrait (Gentileschi)

Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy 2


One more art programme on TV this week is Tuesday 7th April, 12.30 (after midnight) BBC4- Mark Gatiss on John Minton

Hope these work this time, and thanks for sticking with my technical ineptitude.

Best wishes,

4 April 2020

Dear AHA Members,

Hope this email finds everyone safe and well.

I am attaching the next batch of portraits selected by members:
• Janet Hunt has chosen a self- portrait by Artemisia Gentileschi (and I have attached a link to a recent article from The Guardian about her postponed exhibition)
• Fran Weden has chosen “Carnation Lily Lily Rose” by John Singer Sergeant
• Dorothy Coombes has chosen Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy by David Hockney

Portraits Volume 3

I will continue to circulate any more that are sent to me by Sunday April 19th. (Next batch on their way early next week), so please do carry on researching.

Art on TV this week
Saturday 4th April 9.45pm BBC2- “Titian- Behind Closed Doors” (a tour of the cancelled exhibition at the National Gallery)
Tuesday 7th April 8.30pm BBC4- Art Mysteries- Cezanne’s “The Card Players”

AHA Plans
The AHA planning team have decided it would be better to postpone the planned talks for April and May, and instead will set a new topic that people can research and share for these months (as we have done this month).
Details will be sent soon.
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team

30 March 2020

The next three Portraits chosen by AHA members are:
1) The Kitchen Maid (Vermeer), chosen by Hilary Sutherland
2) Thomas Cromwell (Holbein), chosen by Jenny Timmins
3) JK Rowling (Stuart Pearson Wright), chosen by Maggie Roberts

Click on Portraits Volume 2 which is a Word file or on Portraits Volume 2 which is a .pdf file.

Thank you, all three.

The next batch will be sent later this week. Please feel free to keep sending them through.

Art on TV/ Radio this week
Monday March 30th, 9pm, BBC4- Scandal and Beauty, Mark Gatiss on Aubrey Beardsley
Tuesday March 31st, 8.30pm, BBC4- Paul Gauguin
Wednesday April 1st, 10.30pm, BBC4- Van Meegeren- The Forger who foiled the Nazis
Wednesday April 1st, 1.40am Film4- Leaning into the Wind, Andy Goldsworthy’s outdoor art works.
Saturdays 7.15pm Radio 4 Grayson Perry’s Reeth Lectures

Plenty to Enjoy!

Hope this email finds you safe and well.
Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA Team

While we are temporarily unable to meet face to face, a regular update is being circulated to members with light-hearted activities related to art appreciation. There is also a monthly topic for members to research and feed back on.

New members are welcome on either a long or short term basis.

27 March 2020

Dear AHA Members,

We hope this email finds you safe and well at the end of this challenging week.

It is well worth signing up on the ArtSpeak website- they have been sending out daily postings this week, which have been positive and uplifting (all based around varous art themes).

Thank you very much to those people who have managed to get their brains working enough to select portraits to circulate to the rest of us, with explanations of why they have been chosen.

Janet Hoult (who was going to be leading our March session) has selected “Sewing” by Harold Knight.

Lindsay Litton has selected “Young Woman Powdering Herself” by George Seurat, after being inspired by the Art Mysteries TV programme this week.

Felicity Harrison chose “Doge Leonardo Loredan” by Giovanni Bellini.

The only way we have found to send these on Beacon is via the attachment, so hope this works for you, including the links.

If anyone else is able to research and send through their chosen portrait, we will forward these to members.

We will be in touch regularly and will selct a topic for April soon.

Best wishes,

Anne and the AHA Team

March Newsletter

Dear AHA Members,

We hope this newsletter finds everyone safe and well.
For those of you disappointed at the enforced cancellation of Art History and Appreciation this month, we are sending you a few suggestions to keep everyone busy.
Some of the smaller U3A groups are sharing email addresses to help continue their group’s discussions. However, AHA now has over 100 members, so this idea isn’t really practical, and we have to make do with the rather basic and clunky Beacon system to pass on information. Please do send through any suggestions for next month’s AHA newsletter.
We hope you find these helpful:

• Portraits
If anyone has researched for a portrait that they were intending to show this month, and would like to write a short piece about it, please send it to me. If it has an internet link to the portrait itself as well, that would be better still. I will then forward your piece to the rest of the group.

• Virtual tours of Art Galleries
Google Arts and Culture have teamed up with over 500 museums and galleries around the world to bring everyone virtual tours and online exhibits of some of the most famous museums around the world.

• Art Quiz
Thanks to Hilary Sutherland for sending through the link to this art history quiz-

• Recommended Website for Art
Art UK is a very good website- I used it to research last month’s talk on local art. It includes lots of paintings, as well as discussion groups which may be invaluable at this time of enforced self-isolation:

• Paint Yourself Happy
You may be interested in this free demonstration of a painting at 1pm on Wednesday from The Norfolk Painting School. This will be on the Norfolk Painting School page on Facebook Live, when you can see how to paint a peaceful Norfolk beach scene.
Thanks to Richard Eddleston for this very calming suggestion in these unceratin and stressful times.

• Recommended TV Programme
On Tuesday evenings, there is a series on BBC4 at 8.30pm entitled “The Art Mysteries”, presented by Waldemar Januszczak.
This week it explores the hidden meaning in Seurat’s painting “Les Poseuses”.
Last week’s programme (presumably available on iplayer) focused on Van Gogh’s “Portrait with Bandaged Ear”

Hope this gives everyone a few ideas to keep them busy with art.
Keep well and we look forward to seeing you again in person in a few months. If you can help by keeping in touch with any members you know who do not have email addresses, that would be a great help.

Best wishes,
Anne and the AHA team.

Music Appreciation Group

The Music Appreciation Group is continuing to run on a virtual basis.

Each month we have a theme and members chose a song or tune based on this theme. This month it was “Seasons.”

People chose..

Springtime of the Year -The Cambridge Singers

Autumn Leaves – Nat King Cole

Turn, turn, turn – The Byrds

The Summer Wind – Madeleine Peyroux

Autumn Carol – Black Dyke Mills

River of Dreams Hayley Westenra

A Song of the Weather – Flanders and Swann

Windy City -from Oklahoma

They send their choices to me and I collate them and even add a short musical extract if I can find one. I then circulate everyone with all the information. While not as good as sitting together, it does mean the group continues to listen to music chosen by the group.


Poetry Appreciation Group

The poetry group is reading poetry and then discussing the choices by email. I am hoping that more of the members will discuss their favourite poems this way. It would be good if I as the leader could make everyone aware of each others email At the moment everything has to come through me.#

Joan W

Anne Pinnock one of our Group Coordinators writes: In last week’s email of March 17th, we said that email addresses could be shared as long as members had given you their explicit written permission.

You need to get each of your members to email you saying something like “ I agree that my email address can be shared with other members of Beeston U3A Poetry Appreciation Group”

Chess Group

The chess group has moved online, but currently only 4 of our 16 players wish to play this way, so if anyone else wants to play they will be welcome. I have contacted Neil Taylor, who I believe is your equivalent at Leicester U3A, as they have a chess group. He says that if any of our groups wish to link up with Leicester online , he is willing to help.

I also believe that someone runs a U3A online chess league, so I have contacted them and the main U3A chess adviser to see what information they have.

I will let you know what I find out.


Exploring Wisdom Group

Next on-line meeting is on Tuesday 14th April at 10.30 am using Zoom.

We will be looking at the topic ‘Happiness not Pleasure’. What is it that makes us really happy?

All members are welcome to join in that meeting. Contact Richard Eddleston on

Philosophy and Religion Group

The Philosophy and Religion Group has, like most groups, had to shut down its normal discussion programme for the duration. However, since much of our activity is just talking and speculating, the Group is probably a good candidate to head online, so we are currently trying to get everyone onto Zoom. We’ve had a trial run, which seemed promising; we hope to try a full meeting in the near future, and will let you know if we succeed.


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