October 2021: “The Secrets of Belton House”

Welcome to our October newsletter!

The headlines are:

  • Details of our upcoming meeting;
  • A proposal to donate gifts to Broxtowe Women’s Project;
  • And an invitation to our book club as we read, by coincidence, a science fiction classic on the month it is due to be released as a film.

Please scroll down to the image of the second elephant to see our calendar and reoccurring information.

October Meeting

“The Secrets of Belton House”

This month we will be joined by speaker Colin Deely to tell us about the “secrets” of Belton House.

Belton House was built in Lincolnshire around 1687.

It is a Grade I listed building, surrounded by deer-filled parkland (also home to the “Belton bats”) and its famous formal Italian and Dutch-style gardens.

It was featured in the BBC’s 1995 TV adaptation of Pride and Prejudice (the one with Colin Firth!).

According to historical photographer Mikey Holden, Belton “is considered one of the finest examples of Restoration architecture.”

As I was looking up the house to write about, I found several dreamy paintings of the family who was extraordinarily privileged enough to call Belton their home.

I like to think that the woman in the blue dress has the most secrets to tell…

Depending on how well she kept them, we will find out.

The next three months:

  • November: The Alexander Technique with Maggie Bishop
  • December: Christmas Chips
  • January: Cake Decorating

Don’t Forget!

What to bring to the next meeting

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  • We’re meeting in person and not on Zoom;
  • To bring your mask and hand sanitiser (these will be provided for anyone who forgets);
  • Your own drink if you want to bring one;
  • You can message us about our Covid precautions if you are nervous and want to check in with us.

Other News

CAKE Fighters

Collection proposal for BWP

Photo by Arina Krasnikova on Pexels.com

Broxtowe Women’s Project (BWP) is one of our regular points of contact in the community.

They support women who have either left or are still living with domestic abuse.

I recently had the chance to catch up with Chirs from BWP.

She told me that the Project can provide women with basic necessities but it really helps to be able to give them good quality toiletries and small treats like chocolate, magazines, and “special” biscuits.

Some of the women they help have left home very suddenly and have absolutely nothing. Others are still living at home and are controlled by partners, unable to buy themselves nice things.

I mentioned that The Hive WI has donated Christmas gifts to BWP several times before I asked if she had any requests if we did this again.

Chris repeated that “nice” toiletries and small treats are fantastic. She also said that if the women have children they tend to give everything they can to their kids. They will make sure their children have something nice for Christmas, but they will often have nothing for themselves.

As isolation is a fundamental tactic of abuse, women that BWP helps may not have anyone to remember them during the holidays. Being able to receive a gift from the community – that’s us! – challenges the abuser’s narrative that no one cares about these women.

At the October meeting, members will be asked to vote to decide whether or not we would like to donate items to Broxtowe Women’s Project.

If we vote in favour, we will send out a list of items and collect them at the meeting in December.

Book Club: Dune by Frank Herbert

Read the book before the film comes out

By coincidence, our book club is reading Dune by Frank Herbert just as it is about to be released as a major new film.

Dune is a science fiction classic set in the distant future…

amidst a feudal interstellar society in which various noble houses control planetary fiefs. It tells the story of young Paul Atreides, whose family accepts the stewardship of the planet Arrakis. While the planet is an inhospitable and sparsely populated desert wasteland, it is the only source of melange, or “the spice,” a drug that extends life and enhances mental abilities. Melange is also necessary for space navigation, which requires a kind of multidimensional awareness and foresight that only the drug provides. As melange can only be produced on Arrakis, control of the planet is thus a coveted and dangerous undertaking. The story explores the multilayered interactions of politics, religion, ecology, technology, and human emotion, as the factions of the empire confront each other in a struggle for the control of Arrakis and its spice.


It has won multiple awards and is famous as much for its cult following as for the story itself.

If you would like to read and discuss the book before the film comes out join us on Thursday the 28th of October at 19:00.

You too can be one of those “the book was better” people!

Regular Information

Let our elephants remind you what we’re up to!

Time and Location

We meet once a month on the second Wednesday of the month.

Meetings start at 19:30 and run to 21:30.

The location is 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.

Due to Covid, please let us know if you plan to come so we know to expect extra people.

To help cover the cost of the hall hire, we may ask for an optional donation of £5.

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

Guests can also come to our subgroups.

The Hive’s October Calendar

What’s on when

  • Wednesday 13, 19:30 The Secrets of Belton House
  • Saturday 16, 14:00 – Crafternoon
  • Wednesday 20, 19:00 – Supper Club, Amores
  • Wednesday 27, 14:00 – Cafe Society, TBC
  • Wednesday 27, 18:30 – Committee Meeting
  • Thursday 28, 18:45 – Book Club: Dune by Frank Herbert
  • Sunday 31, 10:00 – Walk n Talk, Matlock

Please contact The Hive WI or Hayley if you would like to come to the craft group. We can currently only meet in small groups and these groups may need to be divided.

Recurring Events

Your shortcut to the subgroups

  • CAKE Chat: Every first Monday (19:00)
  • CAKE Fighters: Varying dates and times
  • Publess Quiz: Every four months (20:00)
  • Main Meeting: Every second Wednesday (19:30-21:30)
  • Crafternoon: Every third Saturday (14:00-16:00)
  • Committee Meeting: Every fourth Wednesday (18:30)
  • Cafe Society: Every last Wednesday of the month (14:00)
  • Thursday Book Club: Every last Thursday (18:45)
  • Walk ‘n’ Talk: Every last weekend of the month (10:00)

Please get in touch if you would like to lead a subgroup.

You can find the list of books we’re reading this year on our website.

Walks for the Walk ‘n’ Talk will be listed on our website as soon as they have been planned.

Find Us Online

  • Email: thehivewi@gmail.com
  • Facebook: facebook.com/thehivewi
  • Facebook group (members only): facebook.com/groups/thehivewi
  • Twitter: twitter.com/thehivewi
  • Website: thehivewi.com
  • You can also search for us on Google Calendar using our email address.