Market Harborough and the Bowden’s Charity – July’s monthly meeting

market_harborough_grammar_school1.jpgJim Jacobs will be the visiting speaker at the July monthly meeting.  Jim will be telling us about the invaluable work of the Market Harborough and The Bowdens Charity, the largest in the area.    This includes taking on responsibility for that famous local landmark, the Old Grammar School, that forms the basis of the Market Harborough WI logo.

The Charity dates back to 1570 and earlier.  Today it is the amalgamation of 2 local charities in 1994.  Importantly, it funds many local initiatives through amateur sport, arts, relief in need, community, education and the environment.  Organisations can apply to it for support.   So, join us on Wednesday 24 July at the Congregational Church Hall, Bowden Lane, Market Harborough to find out about the work it has been doing.

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Foxton and the local waterways – May’s monthly meeting

Foxton Locks 007-w500-h500The visiting speaker in May will be Michael Beech, Curator of the Foxton Canal Museum.  He is also the author of ‘Foxton Locks and the Inclined Plane: a 200 year History’.  The evening is open to members and non-members and is on Wednesday 22 March at 7.30 pm in the Congregational Church Hall, Bowden Lane, Market Harborough, to find out lots more about our local canals and waterways.  A small charge of £3 will be made for non-members.   See you there!  Bring your partner or a friend.

From priesthood to policeman

An engaging talk last night from Rich Keenan, a Chief Inspector in the Leicestershire Constabulary.  Rich grabbed our interest right from the start, explaining how, as an 18 year old, he plucked up courage to tell his father that he was planning to go to priest training college.  Located in the wilds of the Durham hills, he spent 2 years’ training before a group of female friends lurred him away.

He began a chequered career from selling aluminium double glazing, doing shifts as an overnight care worker in a hostel to teaching in a devoutly run Jesuit school.  Eventually joining the Met, Rich humourously took us through his training, placement in upper class Kingston on Thames to handling protest crowds in Trafalgar Square.  Family needs brought him to Leicestershire, where diverse roles have included work in rural Melton Mowbray (making decisions on whether the road was too muddy) to the Somali community in Highfields.

His local link?  Getting married 22 years’ ago in the Congregational Church where we meet monthly.