November 2019

We’re always busy at The Hive WI, but this month we have an event we’ve been building up to since spring: Bee Crafty for Christmas is finally almost here! Keep reading for details, including how to buy a ticket.

We also have a new newsletter segment. As the tables at our meetings are used for all kinds of things these days, the section that was originally just about our media swap has changed incorporate all the charity donations, just for fun activities, and raffle competitions that we hold, too. Hopefully this will make it much easier to see what’s going on and what to bring.

Finally, this is your last chance to use the “bring a friend for free” voucher from your WI Life magazine as in December we will be dining out in Beeston. There is still time to put your name down for the meal at the next meeting, but you must give your payment (£21-26) in full. Menus will be available at the November meeting.

Onto the news!

November Meeting

“Medical Detection Dogs”

Our guest speaker this month is Harold Palmer from the charity Medical Detection Dogs.

The charity trains dogs to detect the odour of human diseases, as well as researching the effect of how medical detection dogs can change the lives of patients with life-threatening or life-changing conditions. For example, dogs can smell a dip in a the blood sugar levels of a person with diabetes before any symptoms occur. This amazing ability enables a trained dog to help someone manage their symptoms by preventing a great many of them. For people who have no medical means of preventing symptoms, the dogs can warn them in enough time to get themselves to a safe place. The dogs can also be trained to fetch medical equipment, alert another person, or stay with their owner to keep them calm.

One patient says of her dog, “I feel that I trust him more than technology”.

Other medical detection dogs work with researchers to help identify and diagnose diseases at early stages.

“Because dogs are able to detect tiny odour concentrations, around one part per trillion (the equivalent of one teaspoon of sugar in two Olympic sized swimming pools), we are potentially able to detect diseases such as cancer much earlier than is currently possible.” – Medical Detection Dogs website

Originally dogs were not going to be present at this meeting but a few days ago our president Jenny bumped into a woman on the tram who happens to have a medical detection dog. The two got talking and, though it isn’t guaranteed, we may have a medical detection dog joining us on the night.

Whether you’re interested in the science, the dogs, or are just feeling a bit nose-y (ahem), this is truly a fascinating subject.

On The Tables

Media swap, just for fun, and prizes

  • Poem, pictures, or packets of seeds, we are particularly preoccupied with poppies on our Just for Fun table this month. Anything with a poppy connection is applicable.
  • Committee member Michelle has made an amazing Christmas cake to give away. To win it, all you have to do is guess its weight… £1 per guess. Contains nuts.
  • This is final call for bonding squares for our donation to the neonatal unit, as well as blanket squares for Blankets for the Homeless.
  • Due to how busy the tables are, our media swap is cancelled this month.

Don’t Forget!

What to bring to the next meeting

Usual things:

  • Change for cake and tea;
  • A mug (we will provide mugs if you forget);
  • Your name badge if you have one.

Special items for November:

  • Bonding squares or squares for blankets;
  • Something poppy-related (see On The Tables);
  • Money for Bee Crafty for Christmas pre-sale tickets if you want to buy some;
  • Items to sell on the Bee Crafty stall;
  • A pound or two to enter the Christmas cake competition;
  • Final payments for the Christmas meal that we’re having in December at Amores.

It’s Craaaaaftmas!

Saturday 16th of November

By the time you read this, Bee Crafty for Christmas will be a week away!

Bee Crafty will offer six different Christmas-themed crafts for you to try, a small selection of stalls, a raffle, and homemade refreshments. Both Hive members and the wider community are invited to join.

The stalls will sell crafts made by professional crafts people as well as items made and donated by Hive members. We absolutely love these wooden reindeer that Hive member Amanda made and donated to us (see bottom left photo). They are so full of character! Amanda made them out of pieces of wood from her own garden.

There is still time to make and donate something if you would like to do so. We will do our best to return any unsold items to their makers. Please note that we can’t sell perishable goods and we need you to add your own prices.

Thank you so much to everyone who has already taken the time to make something for the stall. It really does make it that much more personal and special.

Thank you also to the subcommittee team, our bakers and volunteers, and to everyone who has donated items to be used on the craft tables. You make us feel happier than a little wooden reindeer!

Bee Crafty For Christmas is set to run on the 16th of November between 2pm-4.30pm at Chilwell Methodist Church.

Tickets will be available to buy at the next member’s meeting as well as on the door on the day.

Please help us promote the event by spreading the word or bringing a friend with you.

Creating Awareness

“Washing, Dancing, Singing: Women Living and Working in Prison”

One of the lovely thing about the Hive’s Twitter account is that occasionally we get tagged by other people and organisations in Nottingham to tell us about events and activities that might be of interest to Hive members.

One such instance of this happened a few weeks ago when The National Justice Museum tagged The Hive WI to invite members to go to a series of craft sessions. The sessions related to their upcoming exhibition of historic photographs called Washing, Dancing, Singing: Women Living and Working in Prison. The photos date from the 1880s to the 1980s.The NJM says that the photos “arrived with little provenance and we wondered how these emotive pictures could be shared when we knew so little about them. The absence of information offered us both a freedom and a challenge.”

At the sessions participants created textile pieces that will be displayed in the exhibition itself. These textiles included squares of white cotton onto which facts and statistics about women’s prisons and prisoners were designed onto them. Textiles was the chosen medium as historically women were given a lot of sewing work to do during their sentences.

Notts TV also contacted The Hive WI on Twitter after seeing photos of our work and asked if anyone was available to appear on TV to talk about it. The request was too short notice for an on-the-day interview for anybody this time but it is exciting to see what possibilities social media can open up for us.

If you know of an event that you think Hive members would be interested in, please get in touch. If you are a Hive member you can post about events in our Facebook group, otherwise you can contact us on social media or by emailing

Washing, Dancing, Singing: Women Living and Working in Prison is a free exhibition and runs between 18 November 2019 – 2 February 2020.

Regular Information

This Month’s Volunteers

Busy bees

Our star bakers this month are Rosie M, Catherine T, and Jane B. Please arrive early so we can slice and serve your cakes ready for 19:10. We also want to pay you back for the cost of the cake (up to £2.50 per cake) so please remember to sign for your reimbursement by seeing a committee member in the kitchen, too.

Lily C, Sue H, and Sally P will be helping out in the kitchens.

Morag C will also be helping with setup and cleanup.

Thank you so much to our November team!


Drinks, cake, conversation

Cups of tea and slices of cake are 50p each.

If you’d like refreshments before we start, please come for around 19:15.

We will break for refreshments again later in the evening (do bring change!).

Please do not bring a cake if you have not already signed up to do so.

Bring your own cups if you can to save on washing up (though cups will be provided in case you forget), and wine if you would like it.

Time and Location

Our main monthly meeting is every second Wednesday of the month at 19:30 to 21:30 in the church hall on Foster Avenue, Beeston (opposite the library).

Parking and Transport

There is parking just outside the church hall as well as across the road next to the Citizens Advice Bureau.

Beeston’s transport interchange is excellent for regular trams and buses.

The interchange is just by Tesco and a four-minute walk from where we meet.

Non-Members and Guests

We’d love to meet you!

Guests are very welcome but you must reserve your place before coming.

There is an optional visitors donation of £5 to our charity.

Guests can come to up to three monthly meetings each year as a guest before being asked to join officially.

Guests can also come our subgroups as a plus one, or visit each subgroup up to three times as a visitor.

November Calendar

What’s on when

  • Wednesday 6, 14:00 – Cafe Society at Greenhood
  • Wednesday 6, 19:00 – Craft ‘n’ Chat
  • Thursday 7, 21:00 – Pub Quiz at The Crown
  • Saturday 9, 09:30 – Walk ‘n’ Talk
  • Wednesday 13, 19:30 – Main Meeting: Medical Detection Dogs
  • Saturday 16, 14:00 – Bee Crafty for Christmas
  • Tuesday 19, 20:00 – Tuesday Book Club: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
  • Wednesday 20, 19:30 – Supper Club: Butchers Block, Long Eaton
  • Thursday 28, 19:30- Thursday Book Club: The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters

Reoccurring Events

  • Walk ‘n’ Talk: Every first weekend of the month
  • Craft ‘n’ Chat: Every first Wednesday, 19:00-21:00 at the Methodist Church in Beeston
  • Cafe Society: Every first Wednesday, 14:00 (various locations)
  • Pub Quiz: Every first Thursday from September at The Crown Inn, 20:00
  • Main Meeting: Every second Wednesday, 19:30-21:30
  • Tuesday Night Book Club: Every third Tuesday, 20:00 at The Star Inn in Beeston
  • Saturday Crafternoon: Every third Saturday, 14:00-16:00 at the Methodist Church in Beeston (please note that this subgroup has been cancelled this month due to Bee Crafty for Christmas)
  • Supper Club: Every third Wednesday, 19:30 (various locations)
  • Thursday Evening Book Club: Every last Thursday, 19:30 at The Star Inn in Beeston

Find Us Online

You can also search for us on Google Calendar using our email address.