Driffield Probus Club

Event Reports

10th November 2021

The Chairman welcomed 15 members and prospective members.
Matters arising from the notes 27 October: None
Report of the Committee meeting of 8th November was read by the Chairman.

John Sharman is temporary secretary while Ray Jones continues his recovery after a knee operation.

Christmas lunch has been arranged for 8th December at The Old Star, Kilham, 12.00 for 12.30pm, menus have been circulated, cost 2 courses £22.00, 3 courses £25.00.
A Christmas party will be held on Wednesday 22nd December, normal meeting time. The Ukulele Band will entertain us and mince pies will be provided, members are asked to bring a plate of food “to share”.

Dress code at our meetings was discussed and agreed it should be relaxed to smart casual.

New members proposed after 3 meetings, Denise Massey, Tina Shelton and Jan Holman, proposed Gerald Massey seconded Malcolm Craggs, carried unanimously.

Discussion: COP26 fact or fiction. What can people do as individuals?
Eat less red meat, buy items and food with less packaging, use glass not plastic, buy electric cars, reduce the number of car journeys, fit solar panels to houses. The UK should make building new houses with solar panels fitted compulsory and improve the payback scheme. The world needs to reduce its population, develop cars with solar panels and challenge Russia and China to do more.

How could Yorkshire Cricket Club get it so wrong?
They made a very poor initial response, but comments made years ago cannot always be judged by today’s standards. Other cricket clubs will have the same problems.
You cannot change history, money from the slave trade helped the poor in this country, and slavery still exists today.

AOB: The treasurer is collecting subscriptions 2021-22

Next meeting is on 24th November 2021, 10.30am at the Cricket Club.


Annual General Meeting 13th October 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members to the meeting.
The minutes of the AGM on 14th October 2020 were accepted. There were no matters arising.
The Chairman’s report and the Secretary’s report were distributed.

The Treasurer’s report was accepted. At the this point the treasurer stepped down after 10 years in office and was thanked by the Chairman for the excellent job he had done.

Business for the year 2021/2022
1. Revised Constitution: Proposed by John Sharman, seconded by David Holman that women be accepted as members from 2021. 11 in favour, 1 abstention. The Constitution will be amended by Tony Harris.
2. Annual Subscription £12, Meeting Fees £2.
3. Christmas Lunch – possibly at The Old Star Kilham, Annual Dinner will not be re-instated at this time

The Chairman thanked the committee for their work throughout the year and was himself thanked for his time in office which had been a lengthy and challenging one.

Election of Officers for 2021/2022:
President – Malcolm Craggs
Chairman – Peter Grant
Vice Chairman – Gerald Massey
Secretary – Ray Jones
Treasurer – Ian Fairweather 
Note Taker – Malcolm Craggs 
Publicity – Gerald Massey
Social Secretary (Temporary) - Gerald Massey

Committee Members
All officers plus John Sharman (Past Chairman)

A.O.B. The meeting terminated at this point for photographs and a very nice 50th Anniversary celebration buffet. Thanks to the outgoing Chairman for organising this.

Next meeting Wednesday 27th October at 10.30am.


11th August 2021

The Chairman welcomed 15 members to the new venue.
After a quick inspection to ensure that members were wearing trousers, which raised a laugh, as he had been uncertain on Zoom, the Chairman was thanked for his efforts keeping the Club going for the last 15 months using Zoom.

Matters arising from the Notes 28th July: The Chairman thanked Peter Grant for his very interesting talk.

Abiding memories: banks being open, the ability to get doctor’s appointments, being able to service your own car, seeing police on the beat, the ABC Minors on a Saturday morning, youth clubs, which have now declined due to expensive insurance and rigorous CRB checks, causing inner city problems, the time when Formula 1 racing was exciting not boring.

Plus-side today: reliable cars but can be expensive to repair, power steering, this leading to electric cars and the lack of charging points. Hydrogen powered cars of the future and electrically operated handbrakes.

Technical advances: The transistor, the internet, mobile telephones, the many medical advances including the rapid production of Covid vaccines and modern hearing aids which prompted a discussion on deafness and difficulty hearing certain accents and certain television and radio broadcasters.

AOB: The Chairman advised the meeting that subscriptions and the state of the Club finances would be discussed at the committee meeting to be held in September.

Next meeting 25th August 2021, 10.30am at the Cricket Club (bring your own mug).


14th July 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members on Zoom.

Matters arising:
From the Notes 9th June: Ian Fairweather, who makes his own wine, had offered a glass to any member who requested it, but was disappointed that only one member had replied.
From the Notes 23rd June: The Chairman made comments on the recycling talk as he hadn't had the time to thank the speaker as Zoom had terminated but he spoke to her the next day, she did offer another talk.

What is the purpose of education? Learning, learning how to learn, preparing you for life, discussion on why Latin, Algebra, languages - should they be taught in Wales? Why teach all the different measurement standards, are children just taught to pass exams, are teachers restricted by league tables. There are vast differences in the upbringing of children. History helps us know where we come from, many now research family history, respecting other's views and respecting teachers. Are the current subjects appropriate in the modern era?

Does TV show too much sport during major sporting events? One day during Wimbledon there were 11.5 hours of tennis on BBC1 & 2. Most thought it acceptable, Tony Harris said County Cricket on YouTube was good to watch, comments were made about the non-stop burbling of commentators.

AOB: The Chairman advised that from August the meetings would be held at the Cricket Club. It was noted that the new recycling requirements had been delivered to households from ER Council since our talk; this also identified a new recycling App.

There will be a committee meeting in September.
Next meeting 28th July 2021 10.30 and 11.30 by Zoom.


9th June 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members on Zoom. He said how good the presentation had been at the last meeting.

Correspondence: The Cricket Club is available from July for our meetings, this is subject to various conditions which will be advised to members in a letter from our Chairman with some conditions of our own. This is conditional upon what is said by the Prime Minister on 21st June.

Do you consider yourself to be fully domesticated? Most considered they are, although Tony Harris said he washed up because he could not do anything else! There then followed a discussion on the benefits of owning a dishwasher (electrical variety). Peter Grant asked who could bake a cake. Most could and also make Yorkshire puddings. This led on to TV chefs (James Martin's grandmother's 8 egg Yorkshire pudding) and brilliant air fryers. Cleaning and ironing were less enthusiastic topics although window cleaners were mentioned and Malcolm Winn did admit to pressing his trousers.

What words or phrases grate with you? There were so many that it became a splendid grumpy session and with all the blame being placed upon television presenters. How we got on to wine I cannot remember but we did and members divulged their favourites, we also learned that Ian Fairweather makes his own wine and has done so for many years. He said he gave it away to friends, Peter Grant remarked he obviously didn't have any friends in Probus to much laughter and the offer from Ian of a bottle of wine to Peter.

AOB: Tony Harris advised the meeting that tickets for the Roses cricket match at Scarborough were sold out and it would be a problem getting tickets for other matches.

Next meeting 23rd June 2021 10.30 and 11.30 by Zoom.


12th May 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members on Zoom.

Correspondence: Replies to questionnaire: 18 replies received, 16 wishing to meet if Govt. rules allow and the Recreation Club are open for use. A long discussion took place, and it was agreed that we should set our own rules, these being, members have had 2 vaccinations, social distancing at all times, doors and windows open, face masks, no contact, sanitizer, kitchen and toilets, one in at a time, take your own mug. Some members expressed comments about the cleanliness of the toilets. The chairman said we would meet there from July if allowed and observe the state of cleanliness at the time.

Allan Malloy from Nafferton Gardening Group had the Probus Club display boards, which they had been using, they have been returned and are now stored at Gareth Shelton’s house.

Polls show the young are least content with life. Does this mean the elderly are most content? We were brought up in a “make do and mend era” and are more resilient, the young spent so much time on their phones the real world passes them by, most thought we are content with our lives.

What were your ambitions at age 16 – 18?  Tony H to not follow his father into the Insurance business, Gareth S to be an engineer, Gerald M to be involved in farming.

Next meeting 26th May by Zoom when Gerald and Denise will talk about the Galapagos  Islands.


14th April 2021

The Chairman welcomed 13 members on Zoom.

There was one minute’s silence held in memory of John Chapman.

The chairman had correspondence from 2 speakers on the programme who because of Covid 19 will be scheduled for later dates.

There was a discussion about the BBC coverage of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh and the number of complaints received, also 2 members who use BT have noticed a change in dial tone which is being investigated by BT. This led to mention being made about the ongoing problems getting through to the Doctors surgeries in Driffield.

What is good/bad about living in Driffield?
Good - a good place to live because of house prices, no traffic, good shops, friendly people, (but not all).
Bad - lack of space and parks, the town council not being effective, lack of action by traffic warders making some roads, Eastgate was mentioned, unusable, East Riding Council support being directed towards Beverley. The reduction of facilities at The Alfred Bean while even more houses are being built and the lack of affordable clothes shops for men.

Next meeting 28th March 2021 10.30 and 11.30 by Zoom.  There will be a quiz.


10 March 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members on Zoom. He reminded members that2021 is the 50th Anniversary of the foundation of Driffield Probus Club.

Mental health of young people: There has been much said during the Covid lockdown about this, a lengthy discussion took place with many reasons put forward as to why this is so, parents, teachers, social media, “no just get on with it” attitude. The elder generation, self- isolating or in care homes seemed more resilient to life as it is now, and we thought have coped better.

What is the most interesting place you have been and why?
Gerald, the Galapagos Islands, Mike, Hawaii, Tony, a Tower of London Tour, Ray, RAF posting to Singapore and men in body cages! Gareth, a glacier in New Zealand, David, Paris, a handmade carpet and tapestry factory, Malcolm W, Checkpoint Charlie and a Russian burial ground Berlin. John Moscow on a train watching who was watching him and the contrast of ancient and modern in Hong Kong, Malcolm C Whale watching in Alaska, Digby had enjoyed watching his bins which have been out more than him the last year.

AOB: We had a very short discussion about England cricket in keeping with the length of their innings.

Next meeting 24th March 2021 10.30 and 11.30 by Zoom. “Name that Tune”, partners are welcome.


10 February 2021

The Chairman welcomed 11 members on Zoom.

Correspondence: The Secretary had received letters from members confirming their membership. Membership stands at 25 and the new list will be forwarded to members when GDPR is completed regarding the new entries.

The revised constitution was agreed and will be presented at the AGM for consideration. Tony Harris was thanked by the Chairman for the work done.

Discussion: Is all life of equal value? This was prompted by the Chairman hearing John Humphries discussing a statement by Lord Sumption that old people were less value than young people, although a discussion took place it soon ventured onto Covid 19, particularly Covid 19 on death certificates, smart motorways, speed limit reduction to 60mph, lane direction technology, a suggestion that old people should free up roads by using buses, self-drive cars, insurance rebate for driving less miles, council meetings and ending with take-away meals in Driffield.

Next meeting 24th February 2021 10.30 and 11.30 by Zoom. Malcolm Craggs will talk about Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, partners are welcome.


9th January 2021

The Chairman welcomed 12 members on Zoom.

The revised constitution was discussed, and Tony Harris is to make further changes.

New lockdown: It is known that 3 members have had their injections, it may be more.

Best cars were many: Morgan plus 4, Toyota Avensis, Rolls Royce (but how would you park it?) E Type Jaguar, Jaguar 220, Ford 10, reminiscences of racetrack trips in single seaters, Aston Martin, a trip round the Nürburgring and a floating Bond Bug.
Worst cars were: Vauxhall Viva, Hillman Imp and Talbot Horizon. This led to a discussion about two television programmes, “Bangers and Cash” and “The Repair Shop.”

Alan Kemp advised that some Hospital appointments are still taking place.

As the subscription this year is £0 it is not known what the actual membership numbers are, so members should contact the Secretary, Ray Jones, to confirm their membership.

Next meeting 27th January 2021 at 10.30 and 11.00 by Zoom. Ray Jones will talk about his experiences with air sea rescue. Partners are welcome.


9th December 2020

The Chairman welcomed 14 members and wives on Zoom.

A Visit to China
Gerald and Denise Massey gave a very interesting slideshow and talk on their visit to China. They visited very many places, they also did a cruise on the Yangtze and took some superb photographs, although however good the photography it was impossible to disguise the filthy state of the river described by Gerald as a sewer but that didn’t stop men fishing in it. Photographs also showed the many different interpretations on how to drive in China, which made life precarious for the rickshaw drivers and pedestrians. They also visited the Great Wall of China and the Terracotta Warriors, photographs showed how vast the area is and there are still more figures to be excavated. They enjoyed the Chinese food, it being nothing like in a Chinese restaurant here but they gave the impression that they won’t be having “chicken feet” for Christmas lunch, the dish looked really appetising (NOT). Members thanked them in the usual way for what was a most enjoyable meeting.

Next meeting: Wednesday 13th January 2021 at 10.30am and 11.30am.


11th November 2020

The Chairman welcomed 10 members on Zoom.

Peter Buxton had written to say he was pleased to accept the offer of Honorary Life Membership and wished to thank the members.

Should Universities, Colleges and Schools have been closed? A good discussion with most agreeing that they should be closed because of the attitude of some to ignore the guidelines. It was stated that finance from foreign students was a factor in re-opening. Schools should now be open and most were working well with children obeying the rules. It was surprising there were children coming back to school in nappies having forgotten toilet training while at home.

At 11.00am a 2 minutes silence was observed.

Favourite meal if on death row: Many choices – fillet steak & gooey pudding, tomato soup, braised steak, cheesecake, treacle pudding, fish & chips, ice cream, lamb chop & chips, cheesecake, prawn cocktail, meat & tatty pie, rhubarb & custard, a slow cooked meal, a large bowl of All Bran!

Who would be your ideal Covid 19 bubble mate? In no particular order - Dolly Parton, David “Bumble” Lloyd, Nigella Lawson, Sofia Loren, Rachel Riley, a dog, Kate Humble and “my wife because I know her.”

AOB: The NHS Test & Trace app failings, the actions of Donald Trump on losing the US election. The Probus Club Constitution is to be reviewed by Tony Harris, regarding quorum numbers at the AGM and proxy voting due to the pandemic./Next meeting: Wednesday 9th December on Zoom, when Gerald Massey will take us on a trip to China courtesy of his slide show and no self isolation.


Annual General Meeting, 14th October 2020

The Chairman welcomed 12 members to the meeting held by Zoom.

Minutes of the AGM held on 10th October 2019 were accepted after amending item 9iv from Annual Lunch to Annual Dinner.

Reports from the Chairman and Secretary were distributed. Noted that the Probus magazine is now cancelled. The Treasurer’s Report was accepted after alteration of incorrect cheque number. The £50 deposit paid to Pocklington Gliding Club to be requested to be refunded.

Business for the year 2020/2021: i) Annual Subscription reduced to £0 until we meet again in person. ii) Christmas Lunch – cancelled. iii) Annual Dinner – will not be re-instated until a change in Covid allows it. There were votes of thanks to the Chairman and the committee for their work throughout this difficult year. In view of the lack of events during the pandemic, all officers will remain unchanged for 20/21,

if willing to stand. President – Malcolm Craggs Chairman – John Sharman Vice Chairman – Peter Grant Secretary – Ray Jones Treasurer – Digby Sewell Note Taker – Malcolm Craggs Publicity – Gerald Massey Trip Advisor – Malcolm Winn Committee Members: All officers plus Gerald Massey (Publicity), Malcolm Winn (Trips), David Bannister (Past Chairman)

At this time Zoom seems to be the only way to meet and we will continue to meet on the 2nd Wednesday of the month. The Chairman and 2 others will investigate ways of using Zoom to offer talks/presentations to the members. We will have an opportunity to increase the membership when the pandemic is over, as people look for new things to do. Peter Buxton will be offered Honorary Life Membership of Driffield Probus Club.


16th September 2020

The Chairman welcomed 11members on Zoom.

The Grumpy Club now meet since change in Covid Rules allows 6 individuals to meet.

Restarting Probus Club meetings in person: There were no new views on the subject passed to the Chairman since the last meeting but it is unlikely to happen soon.

Hobbies: When young, John Sharman – stamp collecting, meteorology and cricket, Malcolm Winn – stamp collecting, go-carting and now coin collecting, Gerald Massey – collecting stamps with birds on them and still does, Ian Fairweather – fishing and now making wine, Mike Roberts – playing the piano then church organist and he now plays for the Yorkshire Wolds Community Choir, Peter Grant – building and racing sailing dinghies and is a qualified yacht master, he also ran for Hull Harriers and Yorkshire, now singing and gardening, Digby Sewell – collecting horseshoe crabs and cutting the lawn!, Malcolm Craggs – train spotting, building model gliders and cricket, Tony Harris – singing in the church choir, the theatre and cricket.

Strong views were expressed about the BBC being too PC and this then led to most being unhappy about having to buy a television licence. Comments were passed that the Black Lives Matter movement is causing turmoil in America. Speed Limits: No problem with lowering speed limits, example the speed limit lowered between Sheffield and Rotherham to reduce pollution. Comments passed on getting caught speeding, the increase in cycle lanes slowing traffic, the space needed to pass a cyclist, zebra crossings, the quietness of electric cars, the loss of hard shoulders on some motorways and the lack of bells on bicycles. The Chairman told the meeting about the Lions having electric scooters which are available for the public to borrow, no charge but one can make a donation. Some people are having their flu jabs at Lloyds Chemists.

Next meeting Wednesday14th October on Zoom, which is the AGM. Whynot join us, if you aren’t sure how contact Malcolm Craggs who will try to help. As this is an unusual period in time, members who are not able to attend the AGM on zoom are requested to contact the chairman by email or telephone giving their agreement that decisions made at the AGM are carried.