Exmoor Rotary Club



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Exmoor Rotary: Club News 2008-9

Club News on this page follows the main events in which the club has been involved this Rotary year - from July 2008 to June 2009.


The club's handover of Presidency took place on 1st July at the Quarryman's Rest in Bampton. An excellent carvery meal was enjoyed by almost 40 Rotarians and their partners and guests.

Here (very) Immediate Past President Humphrey congratulates the new President Barney and hands over the chain of office.

Handover - July 2009

Vist by 1200 DG and CHSW

A very special lunchtime meeting of the club took placeon 30th June, the last day of the Rotary year. Robin Brown, Rotary District Governor of Somerset (1200) came to be presented with the Exmoor Challenge trophy which Somerset had won by rather a convincing margin (see below!).

Vist by 1200 DG and CHSW

We also had Paul Curtis from Children's Hospice South West to whom we were able to present a donation of over £12,000, this having been raised from the Exmoor Challenge, the Exmoor Youth Challenge, and from our help with the organisation of Ironman UK.

Pictured here are Robin Brown, President Humphrey, Paul Curtis, Gill Appleby (organiser of the Challenge) and Tony Quinn (DG 1200 from the following day).

Dictionaries donated at Bolham SchoolDictionaries

As part of a new national scheme within Rotary, this year our club is donating dictionaries to Year 6 pupils (11 year olds) in three local primary schools - some 55 dictionaries in all.

Pictured here is President Humphrey with pupils from Bolham Primary School clutching their new aquisitions, Dictionaries4Life.

Award from Shelterbox

Shelterbox Bronze Award

The club has (belatedly) been awarded a Bronze Award from Shelterbox. This is in recognition that we have raised the funds for over 25 Shelterboxes.


In fact, at the time of writing we are up to 43 boxes - equivalent to the magnificent total of about £21,000.

A silver award will be gained when we reach the 50 boxes!

Club BBQ

Some 40 members, families, and friends joined in for the Club BBQ (a President's Not At Home) on the longest day of the year. With our two chefs at their cookers, and with Richard providing four different meats with delicious sauses and relishes, it was a notable event. Salads and puds (there were a lot of strawberries!) were there in abundance, and to judge from the clean plates at the end, everyone had enjoyed an excellent meal.

A competition to find objects which were out of place in Richard and Audrey's garden produced much hilarity.

Club BBQ

A Cheque for Diabetes UK

A cheque for Diabetes UK

A guest from Botswana

Sarah from Diabetes UK visited our club for the meeting on 16th June . We were able to present her with a cheque for £1200, this being part of the donations we received from the Ironman UK event last year. The money is being used in this instance to target research at Exeter Peninsular Medical School, part of Exeter University, into the links between genes and Type II diabetes.

Below is President Humphrey with Mike Lakin from RC Gaborone in Botswana, also visiting our club meeting - he has also been DG in that country.

Aunt Sally

Aunt Sally

Exmoor Rotary once again brought laughter and chaos to the George Inn at Brompton Regis.
Three teams battled to win at Aunt Sally, some were lucky, others seemed to be controlled from another planet. Our future president Barney, put on a fine performance, with three strikes. Richard of Wales was having difficulty until it was suggested that he rolled up his left trouser leg before throwing - success followed, with a strike. Others aimed for the skittle and found that trees suddenly got in the way. Birds fled their nest to avoid being knocked out by flying objects. In spite of our best efforts to disrupt a beautiful tranquil evening, everyone had a great time.

Ironman 2009

Ironman UK - Wimbleball

Ironman UK - the 70k version at Wimbleball Lake - Sunday June 14th. Our club ran a cyclists' service station - pictured on the right - on the hill to the west of Brompton Regis.

This event raises a considerable sum for charity and this is shared by the seven Rotary clubs who help with the organisation. It can be quite exciting handing a bottle of 'Power' to the cyclists as they whiz past at high speed (or at least the front runners do!) And what a nice bunch the competitors were - very appreciative and courteous.

Frances - At Home


Frances at the eye clinic in Ethiopia

At what has become an annual event, Frances invited many of the movers and shakers from Dulverton and its environs to wine and canapes by the riverside in her back garden. This was in aid of two charities our club supports, the Eye Clinic in Ethiopia, and the Rotary Foundation aiming to eliminate polio worldwide.

Over £1500 was raised in the evening, a remarkable success. Representatives of the Exeter-Ethiopia Link were there to explain how their project had developed to the success it is today.

Presentation to the Calvert Trust

As a result of our involvement in last year's Wimbleball Ironman UK, we were able to give a cheque for £1200 to the Calvert Trust, an Exmoor-based organisation which specialises in adventurous holidays for people with disabilities of all kinds.

See here is Tim Harris, Director of the trust, with President Humphrey.

Presentation to Calvert Trust

President's Night

President's Night at the Anchor

DG and President

On 22nd May President's Night took place at the Anchor. Members of the club and partners, and a number of guests from other clubs joined us for an excellent meal and general good cheer!

The charity supported was Water Aid for which £90.50 was raised.

Left: District Governor George and President Humphrey

Rotary Exmoor Youth Challenge

Checkpoint 3

Nearly 500 young people aged 10-18 walk 16 miles on Exmoor - it's the annual Challenge. Exmoor Rotary is assisted by several other clubs, many friends, St John Ambulance, the Exmoor Search & Rescue, RAYNET and others - all to create a great experience for the youngsters, and to allow the event to take place in safety.

This year the event was held in excellent weather, fine and dry but not too hot. For a slideshow of pictures and full results click here.

Outing to Coldharbour Mill

The club visits Coldharbour Mill, Uffculme

On April 28th, 36 of us went for an evening visit to Coldharbour Mill in Uffculme, a working wool mill museum

Here we were given an excellent talk and guided tour and learnt much about the working conditions over 100 years ago, and the high-tech equipment of the industrial revolution. This was followed by a very good supper together in the mill's restaurant.

Donation to Shelterbox


Following our very successful Rotary Community Sunday Lunch (see below), and the donation of a further Shelterbox by an individual member, we were able to send off a donation of £2000 to Shelterbox.

This was particularly timely following a large number of boxes being sent out by this amazing charity after the earthquake in Italy.

Cheque for Marie Curie


Cheque donation to Marie Curie Cancer Care

Following the two very successful Charity Nights run by the club, we were able to present a cheque for over £500 to Natalie, a representative of Marie Curie Cancer Care from Tiverton (she's the slim one in the middle!).

She was able to explain to us the shift in emphasis of how this wonderful charity operates, and to explain that the money we raise in this area is all used locally.

Exmoor Challenge

Checkpoint at Dunkery Bridge

Return to Wheddon Cross hall

This year's Rotary Exmoor Challenge took place on April 5th in glorious walking weather. It again took the form of two sponsored walks, one of about 7 miles, one of about 12 miles, attempted by Rotarians and friends from both the Devon and Somerset District.

This year it was won handsomely by District 1300 (Somerset) - but most important is the several thousand pounds being raised for Children's Hospice South West.

District Pub Quiz in Dulverton

Pub Quiz Night in Dulverton

The Lion in gets the certificate

The annual pub quiz took place in four venues organised by the club. In Dulverton we provided quizmasters and helpers in The Bridge, the Rock, and the Lion, and at Exebridge, the Anchor.

The title of 'Brainiest Pub in Dulverton' was won this time by the Lion Hotel, who seized that title from the Bridge Inn. On the right, the certificate is presented to the Lion Inn.

As can be seen (left), it was a most convivial evening which we all enjoyed, and which raised £220 for charity.

Charity Skittles Night

Some of our members, partners and friends went and took part in a charity skittles night organised by Tiverton Inner Wheel ladies at Washfield.

Our two teams did not excel at skittles alas, but did well in the accompanying quizzes (one team won 1st prize) and also had some successes in the raffle. As can be seen from the photo, the shepherd's pie and peas was excellent!

Money was raised to help local carers.

Charity Skittles with Tiverton Inner Wheel

Canine Partners

Canine Partners at Dulverton

On Thursday 12th March, the club organised an event at Dulverton Town Hall to publicise the work of Canine Partners. The hall was almost filled with local people with an interest in finding out more about this astonishing charity which trains dogs to transform the lives of disabled persons.

Shown on the photo are Wendy (and Edward), Sheila (and Juneau) with Rotarian Jo who organised the event in the background. More here about Juneau and his life during 2008.

An excellent, informative, and very amusing talk was given by Malcolm Watts OBE, and afterwards the club provided a free tea with scones and home-made cakes. People were very generous with their donations and we raised approximately £240 for the charity.

Rotary Cabaret Night

Cabaret entertainment

A good time was had by all at the Cabaret Night organised by the club on Feb. 27th with a packed Riverside Hall being entertained by Bob and Carole along with comedian Slim Pickins.


All the food preparation, serving, and clearing (and washing up!) was done by club members, and the money raised (over £500) will be going to Marie Curie Cancer Care and to WaterAid.

Ilfracombe Members Join Our Meeting

We were delighted when 11 members of the Rotary Club of Ilfracombe joined us for our lunch-time meeting on 20th January. It was a good occasion and we all enjoyed an excellent lunch - in spite of problems with the central heating at the Anchor!

This process is called a 'scatter' and ensures that we make links with other clubs in our area and enlarge our circle of Rotary friends.

Ilfracombe members join us for a meeting

Community Sunday Lunch

Shelterbox Lunch

This event, the brain-child of two of our members Edward and Richard, was started following the Tsunami disaster in SE Asia. This is now the 5th year the Community Sunday Lunch has been held. Over 120 people enjoyed a 3-course carvery lunch which was prepared, set-up, served, and washed up(!) by our members and family and friends - food and wine were subsidised by various suppliers for which we are most grateful. Everyone had a good time, and there were many compliments about the quality of the food - and the company!

The very remarkable sum of over £1500 was raised, equivalent to three Shelterboxes.

Youth Speaks

This year the Junior Youth Speaks competition, a three-school event organised by our club, was held at Bolham School. Again the standard of public speaking was extremely high particularly considering the young age of the participants.

Shown here with the President are the winning team from Bolham School, Ellie, Charley-Ann, and Harriet. More info. and pictures here.

They move on to the next round at the end of February.

Youth Speaks - Junior

Santa's Sleigh Collections

Santa visits Brushford

Santa visits Dulverton Starlight

Again our Rotary Sleigh has taken Santa around Bampton, Dulverton, Morebath, Shillingford, Brushford, and Dulverton.


Everyone has enjoyed the festive music, and have been very generous in putting donations in our collecting tins.

A record £1428 was raised, a great achievement in these uncertain financial times.

Ethiopian Eye Clinic - update

Eye Clinic in Nekemte

Here our international representative Frances (second right) is seen at the opening of the new Spectacle Unit alongside the new Eye Clinic in Ethiopia. She visited there in November to see the progress being made - our club has raised several thousand pounds for this charity.

Much more information - and pictures- can be found here.

Visit to Shelterbox, Helston

Shelterbox, Helston

26 members of the club with partners joined up with a similar number from RC Wiveliscombe to go to Helston in Cornwall to visit the Shelterbox charity on 20th November. This turned out to be an inspirational experience for all. After a very good lunch in Helston, Shelterbox provided excellent guides and the opportunity to see this massive and hugely successful operation first-hand.

Our thanks to all at Shelterbox for giving us this opportunity (and to those at RC Wivvy for organising it).

More pictures here.

District Conference 2008

Conference - Indian style

16 of us went to Weston-super-Mare for the Rotary District Conference on 14-16th November. We had a great time, and heard some really excellent talks including the Calvert Trust, Canine Partners, the Media, and Family of Rotary.

The Western-themed evening produced some fearsome cowboys and indians, and those on the left are the Little and Large of the Exmoor Club! The Gala dinner in the Wintergardens was a splendid affair even if the music was somewhat too loud for the more ancient members such as our President! Exmoor Rotarians before the Gala Dinner


At the concluding session of the conference, we were astonished - and very pleased - to be awarded the prize for the Best Club Bulletin during the Rotary year 2007/8. Of course, we also have all our Club Bulletins available on-line here.

Bampton Charter Fair 750

This year's Fair was rather special, being the 750th anniversary of the granting of the Royal Charter by King Henry III (more here). The club ran it's 'Whiskey Galore' stall (with some gin as alternative!) along with Bric-a-Brac.

Members of the club helped out at the Fair in all sorts of ways, helping to set up and dismantle, acting as stewards, entertaining in the Mummers Play, bell ringing, and flogging commemorative DVD's.

Exmoor Rotary at Bampton Fair

Cheque Presentations

Cheque for Bampton Primary School building fund

Cheque for Children's Hospice South West

On Tuesday 28th October, Club President Humphrey presented cheques to two local organisations. £1000 had been raised from Rotary Cabaret Nights and this was presented to Paul Tuck (left), Chairman of the Governors of Bampton School. Receiving a cheque for £6000, was Paul Curtis (right) on behalf of Children's Hospice South West - this was a 'second installment' raised from our two Exmoor Challenges.

Our thanks to all those who support our events and help to raise so much sponsorship for these causes.

District Governor's Visit

President Humphrey receives the RI Banner from DG George

EDward recieves his PHF

A highlight of the Rotary year is the official visit made by the District Governor to our club. This was on October 14th when DG George and Margaret came and shared our lunchtime meeting, along with many guests and partners.

A very special presentation took place when Past President Edward was given a Paul Harris Fellowship to acknowledge the immense contribution he had made both to the club and to work in the local community. Edward was 'flabbergasted"!

District Pub Quiz Night

A very successful evening took place in Bampton and Exebridge on Thursday October 9th. Over 70 people took part in three separate locations, the Quarryman's Rest, the White Horse, and The Anchor. It was won this time by The White Horse (although scores were very close!) and £175 was raised for charity.

A New Member

President Humphrey welcomes Norman to the club

On Tuesday 7th October, Norman was welcomed as a new member of the the club by President Humphrey, the first new member in this Rotary year. It was a lot happier occasion than the photograph suggests, and it may not be clear as to who has the vice-like grip!

Rotary Cabaret Night

Friday 19th September - and it was again Rotary Cabaret Night in Bampton. A sell-out event, with some of the audience coming quite long distances to join in - it's a pity we do not have a bigger hall! Music was provided by Country Company, and the accordian-playing comedian Nigel Boy Syer was all the way from Norfolk.

Members of the club helped to set up the event, prepare the food, and act as waiters, not to mention the washing up. Profits of £561.90 will go to Marie Curie Cancer Care and to club charities.

Exmoor Rotary Cabaret Night

Devon Sings

Devon Sings

Our club joined with those of Tiverton and Exe Valley for this Rotary county event, run in conjunction with BBC Radio Devon. The idea was to sing Uncle Tom Cobley an' All simultaneously across Devon in aid of BBC Children in Need - all on Widdecombe Fair day 9th September. This is the first time this event has happened, and if successful no doubt will be repeated.

Senior Citizens Outing

The annual Senior Citizens outing organised by the club is always very popular. About 50 people are invited from the Bampton, Dulverton, and Brushford area. This year the coach made a round trip across Exmoor, and back via the north coast road, stopping at Lynmouth for a cream tea and a walk around the sea front.

Although some brollies are visible in this photo, the weather was kind, and only a few spots of rain fell.

Senior Citizens outing

Bampton Open Day

Ready for the duck race!

Secondhand book sale

August Bank Holiday Monday - Bampton Open Day. It was all happening in Bampton, and the crowds came to enjoy the varied events. Our club ran a secondhand book sale which has now become a regular fixture and £479 was made for charity - remarkable because most books were only 50p!


The duck race which Rotary has run for the last two years again proved quite a crowd-puller. Seen here on the left is organiser Jo along with a fortunately unrecognisable Mr Duck. We were delighted that this made a profit of £606 which will all be donated to the charity Water Aid.


We'd like to thank everyone for being so generous.

Dunster Show

The club again ran a 'Whiskey Galore' stall at the very popular Dunster Show on August 15th in aid of Shelterbox and Water Aid. We shared the pitch with three of the local Somerset clubs and the large RIBI exhibition vehicle. Against all the odds, the weather was warm and sunny all day

Exmoor Rotary at Dunster Show

Mid Devon Show

Marie Curie stand at Mid Devon Show

Some of our members went along to the Mid Devon Show on July 26th to help with this year's nominated charity, Marie Curie Cancer Care. It was a very hot summer's day, and we are told some 15,000 visitors attended. The hats and tabards certainly helped to attract attention! - pictured left are Alan O. and President Humphrey.

The total amount raised for this charity on the day was a whopping £2339.79. Each £20 provides an hour of free Marie Curie nursing care to terminally ill people.

Bridge Inn Quiz Night

Our thanks to the Bridge Inn in Dulverton for again organising a Quiz Night in aid of Rotary funds on July 24th. After sustaining ourselves with excellent home-cooked food, the quiz was enjoyed by members of our club and Dulverton residents alike. The entry fees and raffle gave us a £85 donation which will go towards our annual outing for local Senior Citizens in September.


Exmoor Handover July 08

At a splendid carvery supper at the Quarryman's Rest on July 2nd, a capacity turnout celebrated the achievements of the Rotary year, and the mantle was passed on from immediate past president Richard to President Humphrey.

The occasion was graced by the presence of our new District Governor George, and by ADG Paul.