Meeting Report – 15th December 2016

Our last meeting of 2016 was a very festive occasion.   First we were all warmly greeted at the door by our hospitality person, Georgina.  In  the meeting room we all sat round tables which had been decorated with table cloths and snow flakes and laden with goodies like mince pies, chocolate rolls and drinks like Schloer, juice and coke.

Our Toastmaster for the evening was Dave Henson who was festively dressed for the occasion and explained to us the new format for the evening and introduced Annelise, our Timekeeper.

Christine led the Warmup by asking members to share their favourite Christmas music.  Some brave members actually sang parts of the songs, including Royston, Georgina and Juan, who sang beautifully in Spanish.

Our first speech was Sue Shaw, with Speech # 2 from the Humorous Speaking Manual titled “The gift of . . . “  Sue entertained us with a speech about Christmas,  beginning and ending with a humorous story, embellished with some awesome looking props!

Our second speech was by Richard Murray, who entertained us with speech # 5 from the Speaking Manual, about his experiences with dyslexia. Richard stuck labels to himself to illustrate how he had been labelled as a child but his speech didn’t quite go to plan as the labels kept falling off!!

This was followed by a time of open feedback when, instead of completing a feedback slip, members told the speakers their commendations and recommendations.  As a result the speakers received some very useful tips.

After a short break Simon led “Table Topics with a Difference”, which was a game of “Pass the Parcel”.  When the music stopped the recipient unwrapped a layer of Christmas paper to reveal four chocolates and a Topic.  The topics were all about Christmas and we learnt some interesting facts such as it snowed from December to March in 1963,  and in that year Dave was unable to ride his new bike for three months and Richard broke his teeth going down a slide.








After each Table Topic Simon chose someone to give an immediate verbal evaluation.

The very last layer was unwrapped by Eddie Barnes to reveal a box of After Eight mints.  Congratulations, Eddie.

After this our President, Paul Andreas, led a quiz based on the things that we had just heard in the Table Topics session, such as, “Who Played Secret Santa?”   Each correct answer was rewarded with a chocolate.

Then on to the most important part of the evening – the Awards.













Paul announced that Richard and Sue were equal first for Speeches and presented their awards – chocolates.  The Table Topics was also a tie – we had ten equal winners!

Then we used a Clapometer to decide who was the most gaily decorated person.  Sue won this and we had three runners-up – Dave, Margot and Christine, who were all presented with awards – chocolates. Congratulations to everyone.

Paul Andreas then drew the meeting to a close and wished everyone a Happy Christmas and a Blessed New Year.

A big thank you to everyone who contributed in some way and helped to make the evening a success.











After the meeting a little food was left and we gave a bottle and some chocolate rolls to Kevin, our Caretaker, as a Thank You for looking after us so well during the year.

Next Meeting

Our next meeting will be held on Thursday 5 January.  Meanwhile, I wish everyone a Happy Christmas and a very blessed New Year.


Paul Andreas, President, Bromley Speakers

Meeting Report – 1st December 2016

By Sue Shaw

Our club President, Paul Andreas, was on the door to meet and greet everyone.  He pointed everyone in the direction of the kitchen, where a rather special birthday cake had been made by Jenny Taggart to celebrate our VPE Susan Rayner’s birthday.

Neil our Sargent at Arms made sure that the meeting started on time and then handed over for a short introduction by our President. The effervescent Richard Green our VP Mentoring, explained to visitors and newer members about the mentoring programme. This allows members to pair up, if they wish, to get additional support on their speaking journey.

Our Toastmaster for the day was Susan who led the meeting with warmth and humour.  Happy Birthday Susan.

Our meeting as usual started with a warm up.  This allows members and visitors to introduce themselves and answer a simple question. Sue Shaw’s question was ‘what is your favourite food’.

Paul Lynch then gave the Hot Tip.  He encouraged members to use the whole speaking area to add energy to their performance.  He also explained that movement can help to relax a presenter.

Our three main speakers for the evening all spoke about subjects close to their hearts.

Margot Glover gave a very impressive speech for her first assignment with the intriguing title of ‘My encounter with the Grinch’. She spoke about why 1 December each year, (our meeting date,) was a difficult time and how she has moved on.  A very brave subject which was well delivered.

Jenny Andreas presented her CC3, the ‘Get to the Point’ speech. The title was ‘Keep on Dreaming’. Jenny spoke with passion about working to reach her dreams and helping others.  She explained, that even when barriers are put in the way on your first option, that you can still work towards your dream on an alternative route.

Our last speaker was Karen Mefflin who is working through the advanced manuals.  She used great vocal variety and facial expressions for her Interpretative Reading assignment.  She chose ‘I married a man with no emotion’ by Abbie Jones.  It was a good insight into people effected by Asperger’s syndrome.

The speeches were evaluated by Tony Smith, Paul Lynch and Richard Murray who all found much to commend and were able to also give suggestions for future assignments.

After the break, and more scrummy cake, Eddie Barnes was Table Topic Master with a potpourri of subjects ranging from favourite author to cryogenics. 

The Topics were expertly evaluated by Riya George with encouragement and great advice.

Jenny Taggart as timekeeper, gave clear signals throughout the evening to help keep everyone on track.

Also helping members to achieve excellence were Neil as Ah Counter and Richard as Grammarian.

We all benefit from sharing talent and experiences across our clubs, so it was excellent to have Stephen Davis from Croydon Toastmasters along. He delivered a very polished and professional General Evaluation at the end of the evening.

The meeting finished with our President awarding certificates to Margot (Best Speaker), Richard Murray (Best Evaluator), and sharing the honours for Best Table Topic, Sue and Neil.  Paul also presented Richard with his Advanced Communicator Silver.








The next meeting is our Christmas Special on Thursday 15 December at 7.30pm when there will be more cake and nibbles.