Ramsey and District U3A


The chairman (Sheila Gilbert-Hill) welcomed all to the General Meeting on Tuesday 8th May. The usual safety notices were read out. Sheila said that Enid was a hard act to follow, but that she would make every effort to be a good chairman.

Members were reminded that there is a table set up in the foyer for less able members to sit and have their tea and coffee.

As with all businesses, clubs and websites, we must abide by new legislation which comes into force on 25th May 2018. This replaces the Data Protection Act 1998 and is known as The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This is designed to enable individuals to better control their personal data. Therefore, at our meeting, each member was given a form to fill in, this allows us to keep your details on our secure server.

The meeting was then handed over to Jane Cusworth, who will continue as Group Co-ordinator, but will be shadowed in the role by Barbara Holloway. Each month in the foyer, groups will be able to display their wares and have the chance to talk to members about their activities. It will be first come first served, so group leaders, get your groups working on your presentations.

Our trip to the seaside could do with a few more names on the outings list, and our new sharing lunch group will take place at the White Lion Bury on 24th May, organised by David Morris. The Hand Chimes Group are busy practicing, so listen out for melodies! There will be no Computer Group this month.

Our next trip will be to Bressingham Gardens on 20th July. The trip on 17th August will be to Wells-Next-Sea and Heacham Lavender. The trip in October, either 13th or 26th will be to the National Arboretum. Signup sheets available at our next general meeting.

We will be hosting a meet and greet at the Ramsey library on 15th June for new members to our U3A. Further information will be sent to you by Email or letter. If you are a new member and have not received any notification, please contact Sheila Gilbert-Hill.

The chairman then introduced the speaker for this afternoon’s talk, Amanda Carling and her subject “Stonea Camp.”

Stonea camp is an Iron Age multivallate (phased) hill fort located at Stonea near March in the Cambridgeshire Fens. It is situated on a gravel bank just 2 meters above sea level, it is the lowest lying ‘hill’ fort in Britain. The fortifications were thought to have been started around 500 BC and would have provided a significant haven amongst the flooded marshes of the fens. The fort is built with a D-shaped set of earth banks surrounded by a larger more formal set of banks and ditches, which would be filled with fen water It covers 24 acres and was probably built by the Iceni tribe.

There is little evidence of dense occupation, and it is assumed that the site was a meeting ground for meetings, feasting and rituals. Stonea island contains not only Iron Age archaeology, but sites of earlier Bronze Age and later Roman and Saxon settlements. Over the years, rumours have abounded of farmers coming across skeletons, sometimes with spears whilst working around Stonea Camp, however, none of these have been reported or given to local museums!

Several surveys have been carried out, the first in 1990 saw the recovery of several skeletons of adults and children. This included the skull of a 4-year-old, cut twice by a sword. The fort is a possible site of a battle of 47 AD written about by Tacitus when the Iceni Tribe were trapped and attacked within the settlement by a Roman auxiliary force under Ostorius Scapula. A multi storey Roman tower was built within sight of the fort to suppress further tribal rebellion or settlement.

The main question however, is did Boudicca ever frequent this ancient fort? There is no evidence yet found to support this, even though large numbers of brooches and coin hoards indicate it was a special place. Its location on the boundary of three Celtic tribes and coins from all three support this.

Amanda was thanked by the chairman for an excellent talk on local history and we broke for tea, coffee and biscuits.

Future Open Meetings

Our next General Meeting will take place on Tuesday 12th June 2018 at the Community Centre, when we will be entertained by the ‘Upwood Ukeleles’ there will be a chance to sing-along to tunes old and new!

U3A National Website

The email address to receive information about the national newsletter is:


Advance Notice

The Ramsey Carnival takes place on 14th July 2018 and the R&D U3A have booked two tables at the Ramsey Rural Museum, one so that we can raise funds to offset the cost of our hand chimes, by selling Bric a Brac and bottles (wine, beer or soft drinks in a tombola), the other, will be used to display publicity items for the U3A. Donations will be gratefully accepted by any member of the committee, if you have lots to donate, Fran Holland will be your contact point, please phone her in the first instance. We are also looking for volunteers to help with the running of our table/display. If you can help, please let one of our committee know. Thank You.

Other U3A News

Trip to Gardeners World Show

Chatteris U3A are trying to arrange a trip to Gardeners World and the Good Food Show on Friday 15th June, with possibly a coach going from Chatteris at 7.30am to enable arrival time at the NEC Birmingham for show opening time of 9.00am.  The show tickets are max price of £24.00 but we may be able to get some discount if we order soon enough, please could you pass this along to your members and let me know as soon as possible if anyone would like to go and how many.  Transport will be extra of course but hopefully not much more than the NEC parking charge.  You can use my email to contact me or phone 01354 697701 (answer phone) <jan56fieldhouse@gmail.com>

Chatteris U3A Community Defibrillator Fundraiser

Chatteris U3A are hosting a Horse Race Night with Fish and Chip Supper, community defibrillator fundraiser on Friday August 17th, 2018 at the King Edward Centre, Chatteris, 7pm till 10.30pm.    Tickets are on sale now. £7.00 with supper or £2.00 entrance only.   Races can be sponsored by local business for £20.  (We have four more races to sell.)  Individual horses can be sponsored for £3.00. Winners of each race will receive a prize.  Raffle prizes are also being sought.

If you would like to purchase tickets; sponsor a race or horse; or generally support the evening, please contact;

Event organiser and U3A member Ted Croucher.


43 York Road, Chatteris, PE16 6EB

  And Finally

Car Parking – Please remember to park your car considerately and use car sharing, if you are able.


Why did the physics teacher break up with the biology teacher? There was no chemistry.

Yes, money cannot buy you happiness, but I’d still feel a lot more comfortable crying in a new BMW than on a bike.

Editor: Mike Lewis