Muscular Dystrophy, Colchester
Newsletter number 10
July 2002

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Chairman's Corner

Summer at last, now we can get those umbrellas out of the attic and really enjoy the wind and the rain and throw those bottles of sun screen into the dust bin, for another year. I want, belatedly, to thank everyone who contributed, at the AGM, to help in celebrating my Birthday, in March. Due to unforeseen circumstances, I received the gift at a later committee meeting but never the less, the bottle of Glenfiddich was very much appreciated and I did drink a toast to you all, at the opening ceremony. Thank you for your kind thoughts.

In the last newsletter I mentioned that Marion Salmon was entering a residential home but that at that time we were not sure exactly where. I am pleased to inform you that Marion is now happily residing in Crouched Friars, 103 Crouch Street, Colchester and I am sure that she would welcome a visit from her old friends. In recognition of the long and valuable service Marion has given to the branch, over many years, it was suggested that we should present her with a suitable and useful gift. It was decided that a portable television set would be appropriate. This was delivered and installed, some weeks ago. A letter of thanks has been received from Marion. On behalf of you all, I would like to wish Marion the very best of happiness for the future.

Branch Activities

Since the last newsletter, the branch has been involved in several fund raising activities, some more profitable than others, but all contributing to the overall goal of providing funds, to promote research into treatments and cures for MD.

April 12th. Collection at North Station realised 412.86
June 8th/9th Aldham Rally (including the organ) 326.38
June 22nd Collection at Fiveways store Clacton (inc. organ) 435.06
July 5th Collection at Tesco, Station Road Clacton 83.08
July 13th Collection at Braintree Freeport Village 215.53
Tendring Show (Tony Farley / Organ) 153.43
July 20th West Mersea RNLI Fete 138.69

You can see that we have been relatively active over the past months. It is appropriate, now to thank those few volunteers who turn out time and time again, whatever the conditions to help make the above achievements possible. In addition to the committee whom I have to thank for their total support, I would also like to thank, in no particular order,
Stan Angier, for his support and for providing many of the tombola prizes,
Maria Fremlin for her behind the scenes fund raising
Peter Fremlin for producing and maintaining our website
Mrs MacDonald for donating many items including knitwear toys
The numerous people who have donated cakes, sponges etc for the stall
Phyllis Baines for donating various items for the Aldham Rally,
Clare Jarman, Stuart Holden, Gwen Church, David Marshall,
Norman Saunders and Don Leeks for their invaluable assistance at ALL of our activities.
My apologies to the people that I have unintentionally omitted, the work that you all do is very much appreciated, not only by your committee but also by the MD organisation. Without your help the research that is undertaken would not be possible.

Whilst on the subject of fundraising I would like to tell you of the trials and tribulations, incurred at the recent RNLI fete at West Mersea. The day started slowly but the weather seemed to be kind to us. We had erected the gazebo and it was firmly anchored to the ground, the stalls were set up and loaded with tombola prizes and bric-a-brac. All was at peace with the world. We were relatively busy on the stall with both the tombola and the bric-a-brac doing well. Around 3.00 pm a dark cloud appeared on the horizon, approaching rapidly, the sound of thunder could be heard in the distance, prudently we brought everything into the gazebo and carried on as usual. The dark clouds got closer so we decided to roll down the walls of the gazebo, just in case. The thunder was very much louder when the rain started and the wind increased in ferocity, suddenly it was all hands to the poles holding up the gazebo as the wind tried to carry it away. We all clung on, the rain came down in torrents and we all, without exception, were soaked to the skin. This storm lasted for about half an hour then it abated and the sun came out once more. We had had enough, and finished packing away the soaking gazebo, what was left of our stock, most of it soaked and decided to call it a day, headed for home and a hot bath, just an ordinary run of the mill, fund raising event. We could laugh about it afterwards but at the time I don't think that anyone felt much like laughing.

Still on the subject of fundraising, we have had to cancel the street collection in Colchester through lack of support from the membership. This is an opportunity lost for increasing our contribution to head office and a great disappointment to the committee.

On the positive side, we have:

26th August The Mersea Island Lions Fete
27th September Collection at Colchester North Railway Station
23rd November Musical concert at St Botolphs Church, Colchester
November Cards for Good Causes at Colchester public Library.

We are desperately in need of volunteers for each of these events, most certainly for the Music concert, when your help is needed to help sell the 250 tickets that will enable us to show a reasonable profit, over expenses. Please offer your help for this event. The tickets will be available in September. We need your names NOW so that we can plan our ticket distribution. Your help could be the difference between success and disaster. It is up to you.

The Tickets will be on sale at 5.00 each. The West Bergholt Concert Band, playing a selection of Big Band music, music from the Shows, and light classical, will perform the concert. A variety to suit all tastes, there will be refreshments and a raffle, to help boost the fundraising. There is ample car parking close by. With your help this will be a very successful evening and a great close to the years fundraising efforts.

Support this event by:

We really do need your help if this event is to succeed

Advance Notice:
Our colleagues at the Chelmsford Branch have sent an invitation for us to attend a 'Barn Dance' that they are organizing, at Great Baddow Parish Hall, near Chelmsford. This takes place on Saturday October 19th, 7.30 - 11.00 pm the tickets cost just 5 including a Ploughman's Supper. For more information contact Mrs Enid Harvard, Tel: 01245 266067

Many of you will already know that Tony sustained an injury to his shoulder almost one year ago. This has not prevented both Bridget and Tony turning out throughout the year with their organ, to assist us with our fundraising. At the time of producing this newsletter, Tony is about to enter hospital for an operation, which hopefully will rectify the damage caused by the accident. We all wish you the very best of luck Tony and sincerely hope that the operation will be a total success.

Still I am not receiving contributions from you for the newsletter nor any comments on whether or not you really do want it to continue.

Without your feedback on these points a decision will have to be reached by the committee as to whether or not we should continue with it. Please, make the effort and let us know your feelings on this and any other subject. This is your newsletter its future lies in your hands.

Geoff Wiseman,
Branch Chairman / Editor
57 Winsley Square,
Old Heath Road,
Colchester, CO1 2ET
Tel: 01206 792654

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