Eleven years of Whiteley WAGS WI
Inspiring - Fun - Friendship
In 2010 Chloe Bowler set about trying to form a new WI in Whiteley; she did so with amazing results. 49 ladies came along to the first interest meeting, all raring to join a new exciting WI, and so Whiteley WAGs was born. The first few years were characterised by the WI finding its own identity, and pushing the boundaries with exciting and diverse meeting topics. The unofficial motto was "that sounds fun, let's try it!".
The next President was Sue Daish, a founder member of WAGs. Her aim was to ensure our popularity and founding principles remained unchanged. Sue lead a dynamic Committee which saw massive growth in membership to 80 members. Most new members give the reason they wish to join the WI as 'wanting to make new friends'. We hope that everyone who has joined the WAGs feels that it is a friendly, active WI, catering for all its members by having a wide range of activities for you to join.
Our third President was Jane Locke, who built on Sue’s work with the Committee members and actively encouraged everyone to take on a role to share the load of running such a large WI. Jane introduced Cascade Groups, whereby every member is allocated to a small group led by a Committee member. Jane spent a huge amount of time and energy managing our waiting list, ensuring that all ladies who expressed an interest in attending could come along to visit.
In 2019 our fourth President was elected, Eileen Perry. Eileen has been with WAGs from the very beginning, and spent many years managing WAGs membership. Eileen, with the help of the Committee, is now dealing with one of the greatest challenges to the WI, COVID-19. Meetings were cancelled in March 2020, but by June Eileen had mastered how to run a Zoom meeting and this is how we met for many months during lockdown. The Book Club and Craft Club met via Zoom too, but we continued to send out a comprehensive newsletter to our members every month.
In May 2022 we finally held our first face to face Annual Meeting in 3 years. Eileen stepped down after 3 years, and Annette Bradshaw was elected as the incoming President. Rebuilding our own brand of WI meetings has already started, the future looks bright and we will continue to hold interesting and imaginative meetings for our members.
There are too many highlights of our eleven years to write about here - please take a look at the slideshow to get a flavour of what we do.
If you would like to be part of Whiteley WAGs WI and help shape our future, please email email@example.com for further details.