Seahouses WI, September meeting

Seahouses harbour
Seahouses harbour

Lethal lovelies

A good number of members and visitors attended the September meeting of Seahouses WI and we were very pleased to welcome John Robertson, from the Borders, who gave us an insight into the various weeds and herbs growing in our gardens.

His lecture was entitled ‘Lethal Lovelies’, which some of them most certainly are, attractive though they may be.

He introduced us to the ‘do not touch, do not smell, do not eat’ variety.

He mentioned ragwort, dangerous especially to horses, the toxins in yew, nightshade, and even our lovely daffodil bulbs – mistaken sometimes for onions, and how and why giant hogweed can affect us, some plants make us sneeze, not forgetting the foxglove (digitalis) and hemlock. Rhubarb leaves are poison.

Monkshood was also mentioned, plus our ordinary tea and coffee (containing caffeine). Castor oil plants produce black berries – these are ricinus seeds.

Finally, on to opium, cocaine and cannabis, concluding by mentioning tobacco and rosemary.

All drugs are dangerous and must be taken in moderation. The effect on our human systems was explained.

Mrs Peggy Wood gave the vote of thanks, expressing the thoughts of all of us to be careful.

Mrs Pat Minto, our president, then opened the meeting as there were several items of interest to discuss. These included the minutes of our last meeting, held in July, and forthcoming events, such as Embleton’s birthday and Craster singing.

There will be a Georgian afternoon at Bamburgh on September 26, our next pub lunch at the Fishing Boat Inn, Boulmer, on September 26, and the National Federation meeting next June at Brighton.

A centenary celebration will be at the Abbey on Thursday, November 26, at 1.45pm, there will be a walk around Wark on October 10, Down Your Way at Thropton on October 15, a cookery demonstration in Bamburgh Pavilion on October 22, and Christmas flowers and afternoon tea at Glendale Middle School, Wooler, on Saturday, November 21.

Our afternoon cream tea, held on August 20, had been a success and it is proposed that we host a similar event next year.

Plans are in hand for our Christmas lunch and our centenary afternoon tea at Doxford Hall.

Centenary badges were presented to four members for their work during the last few years. These were to Mrs Eileen Braidford (pub lunches), Mrs Doreen Edmision (competitions) Mrs M Turner (reports) and Mrs Gladys MacLachlan (raffle).

The competition, a pretty arrangement of weeds, was won by Mrs Pat Hewitt, Mrs Sheila Young and Mrs Doreen Edmison.

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, October 6, when we will welcome Ms Elspeth Horsfield, demonstrating Painting on Silk.

Visitors and new members are always welcome. So come along and join us, if only for the fun, entertainment and refreshments.