Author Archive | Martin Hugall

Natural History Group to meet on Zoom

After a long hibernation I’m having a go at getting the natural history group meeting again but on ZOOM

Our first meeting will be 4.00pm Wednesday 27th Jan for a maximum of 40 minutes. Then weekly meetings. New members most welcome.

People only get an invitation link for the meeting if they contact me first at

David Corke
23 January 2021

Natural History Group page.

Coronavirus Update

Due to the Coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, most classes are closed and events cancelled until further notice. Please check with your co-ordinators as some classes are meeting on Zoom. 

UK Gov National lockdown: Stay at Home  Restrictions 5 January 2021 – click here

Uttlesford website – Coronavirus page –

Four-tier coronavirus alert levels explained – A good website from AgeUK

BBC – Local lockdown rules: Check Covid restrictions in your area – just type in your postcode.

Latest Government Advice re Coronavirus

See the latest news about Coronavirus on the BBC News page here

NHS Track and Trace and the scams  that go with it, from Essex Police  – NHS track and trace

See also the NHS page on coronavirus:

For latest news in Essex go to – Update on Births, ceremonies and deaths

Visit the Uttlesford Frontline website  for local support organisations.

New Look u3a   

Are you taking advantage of the main u3a website, which is now sporting its redesigned, punchy format and improved layout? Access to gain the full benefit of news, advice and developments taking place within our organisation. You can receive your very own monthly free copy of the national Newsletter by filling in the simple registration form on the main News page. This highlights what is going on, available learning events and what other u3a’s get up to. An easy way to keep in touch with developments and opportunities and is essential reading for us all!

One significant development is the launch of a new u3a brand. Gone is the title ‘University of the Third Age’, which has been replaced by a simple logo and new posters and graphics, which will be used locally. Already we have adopted the new logo at the head of our Newsletter and this will be followed shortly by similar changes to our forms, ‘Update’ and website. This change of logo is the beginning of a much larger drive to promote the organisation, which will gradually take place over the next few months. Watch this space!

Sandown, Isle of Wight Spring Break

The November break to Sandown, Isle of Wight has now been deferred until March 2021.

Dates Mon. 15th March to Thurs. 18th March (3 nights dinner, bed and breakfast.)

Excursions on both Tuesday and Wednesday. Only Saffron Walden pick ups.

Price £199 pp if number of 35 achieved. 30 reserved so far.

If you are interested please get in touch with Jean Little 01799 513411  A.S.A.P.

New Group – Landscape and Literature

Writers of prodigious talent have plied their trade while living in Hertfordshire, Essex and Cambridgeshire, and the landscape has influenced their work: George Orwell found inspiration for Animal Farm in the village of Wallington; E.M. Foster’s home Rook’s Nest in Old Stevenage is the model for Howard’s End; Berkhamstead is revealed as Greeneland, a place inhabited by many of Graham Greene’s exotic characters; and G.B. Shaw fantasises moving in with the village postmistress in Ayot St Lawrence in his play Village Wooing. Rupert Brooke probably suffered from homesickness in Berlin when writing of his beloved Grantchester in Berlin; and H G Wells wrote Mr Britling Sees It Through at Little Easton.

Read the books then visit the places that inspired some of the greatest literature of the last five hundred years in a series of walks around diverse and delightful corners of our region.

The walks will be by arrangement with participants. Please contact Alex Reeve at – 01799 522 818 for further details.

AGM and New Committee

AGM 21st September and New Committee Elected

The 2020 AGM, delayed by the Coronavirus pandemic, was held on 21st September as a Zoom video conference. This was in accordance with our Constitution and guidance from the Third Age Trust.

The proceedings followed the normal AGM procedures in the virtual presence of a small number of committee and U3A members. The draft minutes of the meeting and audited accounts form the previous year are shown below and can also be found on our Publications page:

Draft Minutes of AGM 21st September 2020

Annual Accounts 2019-2020 up to 31st July 2020

A new committee was elected at the AGM and the subsequent first committee meeting on 21st September appointed the committee members to the posts listed below.

Chairman                              Ann Treglown

Deputy Chairman                Jim Dwyer

Treasurer                               Steve Messenger

Secretary                               Tony Treglown

Membership Secretary        John Trueman

Activities Organiser             Mary Curtis

Assistant Treasurer

& Venues Organiser           Hilary Price

Events Organiser                 Chris Duffy

Membership Communications

& Update Editor                    Jim Dwyer


Tony Treglown


Some Seated Exercises to Keep you Fit

Keep yourself moving with Six Simple Seated Exercises

Download this page here

Find yourself a chair, perhaps a dining chair where your knees and hips can be a similar height. Sit yourself with your bottom at the back of the chair and have your feet hip width apart under your knees. Now sit tall in the chair lengthening the crown of your head to the ceiling. This is your starting position. Try to maintain this position throughout the exercises. With all the following exercises please only try them if they feel comfortable and only take the exercises as far as you are happy with. With the situation we are in it’s all about keeping healthy and not over-doing things.

Ex 1 – Breathing
Sit as described above and inhale into the sides of your ribs, then exhale. Get the feeling of breathing like this, and then breathe in for 3 and out for 3 and repeat 6 times. If at any point you feel a little light headed just return to your normal breathing. On the other hand, if you feel that this breath comes fairly easily to you and you want to increase to a count of 4, then try.

Ex 2 – Rolling your shoulders
Whilst sitting tall circle your shoulders forwards, up and around and repeat x 6. Then reverse the movement circling backwards, down and around.

Ex 3 – Floating Arms
Sitting tall as before, with your arms down to your sides, try to keep your body still as you lift your right arm out to the side and float it up towards your ear keeping it as long as possible. Try to keep the weight of the body centered trying not to bend the spine to help, the movement should come from the shoulder. Repeat x 6 and then swap sides and repeat with the left arm.

Ex 4 – Ankle turns
Lengthen the right leg away in front, trying to keep sitting tall all the while. Turn your foot clockwise at the ankle x 6 and then anti-clockwise x 6. Bring the leg back to starting position and do the same with the left leg.

Ex 5 – Knee lifts
From your starting position lift your right knee trying to keep the rest of your body still. Then repeat the same on the left side. It may be difficult to keep the body still when swopping legs but try to keep that lengthening from your bottom through to the crown of the head going all through the exercise.

Ex 6 – Waist Twist
Fold your arms in front and relax the arms so they are resting on your front. From your starting position turn your head to the right, and then turn chest and ribs keeping the arms relaxed on your front so that your arms do not try to turn you. Turn back to looking forwards and do the same to the left. Try not to let the spine bend and just go as far with the exercise that feels comfortable.

Finish with a Big Smile!

Take care everyone and if you would like some more chair exercises just say.