Meeting Minutes 8th October 2014

After a competition night last time, normal service was resumed on Wednesday.

 Our president Ed was back and kicked off the evening.  He set out how our club is part of the wider Toastmasters International family and in that spirit pointed out that we’ve had members visit us from clubs as far afield as Japan, Canada, the USA and Germany.

 Shane was our toastmaster for the evening stepping in at short notice since Isabel was unwell.  Many thanks to him for that.  We welcomed back Shane after a long absence.  Ironically Shane then went on to argue that repeat attendance at Toastmasters is important to keep up the confidence.

Shane’s first role was to introduce Bettina as our timekeeper for the evening.  Bettina is a new member and this was her first role, so well done to her.

 Next Shane introduced our Grammarian for the evening, Jean-Philippe who explained his role and set “je ne sais quoi” as the word (or phrase) for the day.

 Our topics master for the evening was Desmond who was delayed so David filled in at the very last minute.  Well done to him and he set some great (and some tough) topics at short notice.  We managed to get through eleven topics which was a great performance.  As a club, when we have fewer than four speeches, we should look to continue this trend and get as many topics in as we can.

 Desmond arrived in time to take the eleventh and final topic, and then it was back to Shane.  After the voting and timekeeper’s report, Beulah then evaluated all the topics which is always tough, but even more so when there were so many.

 To close off the first half of the meeting, our Sergeant At Arms Roland came on to stage.  He explained the more boring aspects of his role and then introduced eight guests and asked them to explain why there were visiting us and where they were from originally – it was quite a spread (Czech Republic, Ireland, Newcastle, Russia, New Zealand, India and even two from London).  The last guest was Jill, our Division governor – we needed to be on our best behaviour but it was too late because Jean-Philippe had already given his table topic.

 We then had a 15 minutes break and enjoyed some refreshments and some snacks.

 Ed introduced the second half with club announcements:

·         There are no normal meetings in December.  The only meeting on 10 December will be our Christmas Party (sorry, members only).

·         The division final for table topics and humours speech contest is on Saturday, 11 October 2014 from 10:00 to 13:00 (i.e. tomorrow morning).  It is at the Freemasons’ Hall – Gallery Suite, 60 Great Queen Street, London, WC2B 5AZ.  Please go along and support Isabel who as made it through to the Division final for table topics.

·         A reminder that 2014/15 membership payments are now overdue.  Please contact Simon Simpson to pay.

 Shane introduced the three speeches for the evening.

 The first speech was speech #8 from Richard ‘words are great but visuals are even better’.  He used visual aids to talk us through the decision making process he went through when buying his home.  The second speech was an advanced speech from Atul ‘Toastmasters – why bother?’ where he explained the great benefits from attending Toastmasters.  The final speech was from Sanjay ,  a guest to the club, who wanted to practise his humorous speech ahead of his own division final next week.

 David, Grant and Simon then gave evaluations of the three speeches.  The timekeeper then gave her report of both the speeches and the evaluations at the same time – Shane was trying something new there..

 After Jean-Philippe’s grammarian report, Jill gave her general evaluation of everyone on the programme who had not yet been evaluated.

 After Shane signed off, Ed returned to the stage to close the meeting.  He wrapped up by encouraging guests to join the club and then ordered us all to the bar!

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