Everything Else

Ealing u3a Zooming to the New Normal

Ealing u3a has for many years arranged weekly talks for our members on Thursday mornings, usually over 30 over a year. Normal attendance ranges between 90 and 130 and the talks are always popular.

After closing for lockdown, Ealing u3a took the initiative to present regular talks via Zoom, a system entirely new to us all, and decided it was possible therefore to continue the talks albeit on a fortnightly basis.

Our first speaker (or Guinea Pig) was a member of our own u3a and gave a marvellous illustrated presentation on 18 June on the subject of “The Glasgow Boys and the Colourists”.

Moving on we have now, along with many other u3a’s, purchased Zoom licences and managed fortnightly talks ever since basis, attracting between 80-99 members each time. Many of our members had never used the technology before but managed to download Zoom, some with help from family/friends and perhaps assistance from some of our more technically astute members.

On 13 August we were delighted to have the use of London Region u3a “Super Zoom” (thank you so much to the London Region Committee) and were able to extend the number for this talk to a maximum of 500 (rather than Zoom’s ‘usual’’ 100). At Ealing we knew we had a very good speaker that day (Glynis Meridith-Windle) who spoke on “Florence Nightingale-the visionary planner” and offered members of London Region u3as the opportunity to join us for this talk; in fact about 230 members registered their interest and at least 160 joined us for the event.

We now have speakers arranged to mid-December before we break for Christmas. We will then re-commence in mid-January; we are now seriously considering further use of the Super Zoom” facility.

Finally we would mention that, for the first time ever, our annual Photographic Competition will take place in October (via Zoom of course) and most entries will be submitted via internet.