Afternoon tea – 28th December 2014

On Sunday 28th Elisabeth and Kevin welcomed us to an afternoon tea which provided the perfect antidote to the excitement of Christmas. We were able to relax in their comfortable home to chat and laugh with good friends. Many thanks to Elisabeth and Kevin, our perfect hosts.

Christmas Lunch – December 5th 2014

This year’s Christmas lunch was held in le Jules Gommès, a popular restaurant overlooking the sea in Regneville-sur-mer.

31 members booked for the event (although a couple had succumbed to the flu epidemic on the day).

On arrival we all relaxed with a welcome drink and nibbles in the bar. Raffle tickets were being snapped up,  friends were greeting each other and a happy atmosphere was created. It was the perfect start and put us in the Christmas spirit. We then moved into the private dining room to enjoy lunch, interspersed with some fun games.

Once we were all seated Stevie welcomed us all with a speech which was then answered by Jean-Christian – one of our members.

Crackers were then pulled and the first course was served.

In between courses we had ourtradition game of “Heads and Tails”. The main course was then served after which the raffle winners were announced along with the winner of the Guess-the-Photo competition.

Dave then took the gavel to hold the auction for the table flower arrangements (made by member Annette) and a handmade bag donated by member Danielle. The money raised by the raffle and the auction will be donated to our sponsored charities for this year.

The dessert and coffee followed and, finally, we all wended our separate ways home.

Christmas drinks and nibbles – 14th December 2014

On December 14th Karen invited members to an evening of mulled wine and tasty snacks. This has become a traditional and very popular pre-Christmas event.  It was a lively evening with around 28 people enjoying the company and conviviality. A big thank you to Karen for her hard work, her hospitality and the chocolate gifts when we parted.

Bonfire night – November 2014

A Cracking Night

The weather was a rather damp squib for Stevie and Kerry’s Bonfire Night event as it had rained on and off throughout the day. However, that didn’t deter 17 members who were welcomed into their lovely warm and toasty home for the evening.

Mulled wine and a non alcoholic version warmed us all up before we sat down to eat. Stevie and Janet served up a delicious sausage and vegetable casserole which was followed by apple crumble and custard. In between the showers we ventured outside for a firework display organised by Kerry. The crowd ooh-ed and aah-ed in the time-honoured tradition.

The evening was rounded off with tea and coffee and a surprise early Birthday cake for Kerry. A lovely evening and well worth braving the elements in the company of good friends.

Visit to La Faïencerie d’Art and Lunch – 17th September 2014

Seventeen members including two prospective members met at the pottery which is on the outskirts of Saint-Pair-sur-Mer for a guided tour and commentary in French. The pottery has been in business for 61 years producing a wide range of pottery, ceramics and porcelain.

We split into two groups to learn about the different methods production methods. The mix of raw ingredients and the temperatures the pieces are fired at, produce different results and finishes. Production is either by hand (on a potters wheel), using moulds or by machine (for items such as a dinner service where each item must be identical). Once a piece is created, there are then different methods for firing, glazing and decorating it. 90% of the products are hand painted and therefore many can be personalised. An item can take two to three months from start to finish because the process is so labour intensive. It was a real eye opener to see how much work goes into each piece!

Following the tour we had time to browse in the shop (there’s also a ‘seconds’ shop). After our purchases had been made we headed off up the coast road to Granville for lunch at Le Borsalino which looks out onto the harbour. As it was a beautifully sunny day, many of us had a leisurely stroll around the harbour area before lunch.

A comprehensive à la carte and ‘formule’ menu awaited us providing plenty of choice. As you’d expect from a seaside town, there is a good selection of seafood on the menu but also a wide variety of other dishes. The staff were very helpful and we spent a pleasant couple of hours eating, drinking and chatting whilst sitting outside and enjoying the sunshine.

Many thanks to Pat for the suggestion and to Karen for making the arrangements for what was a fascinating and enjoyable day.