Rotary Club of Reading


Younger People With Dementia

YPWD logo

YPWD logo

The talk at our meeting today (6/2/18) 'Young Onset Dementia 'attracted a lot of attention and interest from our members. We were all quite unsure exactly what the word 'Young' implied, however speaker Charlie Draper, Operations Manager for this charity, soon explained and told us that dementia does affect many adults often under the age of 65, and nationally there are about 40,000 younger people with dementia.
Traditionally our UK services are designed to meet the needs and expected therapeutic out-comes of older adults and subsequently, access to activities appropriate for younger adults with dementia is limited. This is where the YWPD Charity stepped in.
 Read more >

Building project for BWA hostel

BWA 1st floor walls

First floor walls

The Club is funding a major part of the cost of this project and building is now underway.
Follow the links for more photos as the project develops. It is now at the stage where we are looking for donations of equipment for bathrooms, kitchens etc.
 Read more >

Rtn. Simon Creffield's Job Talk

Simon & Graham

Simon joined Reading Rotary Club in 2017 and on 27th February 2018 he told his fellow-club members about his work. He was born and grew up in London and it was there that he qualified as a Chartered Accountant. At times he lived and worked in New Zealand but 26 years ago back in the UK with his brother Nigel he set up a timber business, which now employs 18 people at its premises in Tilehurst. They specialise in flame-proof boards and have a strong clientele in the film, TV and entertainment businesses. The materials they supply are used to build sets - Simon was particularly taken with a reconstruction of Westminster Bridge - and the latest films they have been involved in are 'Dark Crystal' and 'Artemis Fowl.' The firm's website is certainly worth a look.
Simon is already a valued member of the Club. He has been a yachtsman and is still a keen golfer and he has kindly agreed to take charge of the arrangements for our Golf Day in September.
 Read more >

Footsteps Foundation

The Spider

The Spider

We have received a thank you for our help. Please follow the links.
 Read more >

A visitation from the District Governor

DG 2018

On Tuesday 20th February 2018 we had a visit from David Pope, District Governor. He spoke very highly of the achievements of Reading Rotary Club but emphasised that Rotary needs an influx of younger people. Nationally, Rotary has started a campaign called Rotary2 which is aiming to set up satellite and independent new clubs and our District 1090 is already involved.
David praised the ongoing achievements of Reading Rotary Club and asked individual members to consider participating in activities at Area and District level.
During the meeting, which was also attended by Val Robinson, President of Reading Matins Rotary Club, our President Eric had the pleasure of inducting Alan Nicholsby into membership.

Bikes for Africa

B4A logo

Roger Butler gave an excellent presentation on Bikes4Africa at our February 13 meet. Roger explained that it is a charitable joint venture between Jole Rider and RIBI Rotarians. The aim is provision of bikes to children in Africa, who otherwise would not be able to attend school due to distance limitations with travel by foot.  Read more >

Reading Rotary Community Project

RRCP's (part of the Reading Rotary Club) latest grants made in February are:
£500 to the 95th reading scout group and
£1320 to Footsteps

In January 2018 £1,000 was awarded to 'Homestart'. For more information please follow the link:
To see their 'Thank You' follow 'Read More'

Recently grants have been made to :-
Accessible Boating Club (part of Rivertime Boat Trust) for wider wheelchair friendly pontoons - £1,000
Age UK Reading to fund chess course and club - £250


The Volvi Refugee Camp

- a continuing story by Maggie (Magdalena Filipova-Rivers) from Grass Roots International. On this return visit, the 6th February, Maggie explained how her work is continuing helping refugees and displaced persons throughout the world. But mainly in Greece. Most of the refugees her charity deals with originate from Syria, Afghanistan and South Sudan.
 Read more >


HOPE worldwide

We now have a report back from Ali Clark-Morris after her latest visit to the village. Please follow the links to see the report. Read more >

The Accessible Boating Club

Ramp after

Ramp area after installation


It is always good to get feedback from charities we have helped and here we have photographic evidence showing the new pontoons. This goes back to a talk on the 22nd August by Rotary Club of Reading Matins member, Greg Wilkinson who thanked the RRCP for their donation of £1000 to the Accessible Boating Club. Greg explained it would be put to very good use as the club has been desperate to renew their old pontoon that is used to get the disabled youngsters on board the boats. The existing pontoon is far too narrow and barely allows for a wheelchair and helper to be on the narrow pontoon at the same time. Read more >

The Great Train Robbery


Our evening speaker on January 30th was Simon Williams, an expert on the Great Train Robbery.
He began his talk by taking us all back to that infamous year 1963.
1963 gave us the Profumo Scandal, then the Spy Scandal began unfolding with Philby, Burgess and Mclean plus of course we had The Beatles!
However, Simon's story began in the month of August 1963 at and, as Simon reminded us, it was going to be just another day for most of us, although elsewhere in the UK plans were afoot to carry out the most daring of robberies.
 Read more >

'The Charity for The Buscot Babies Ward'

Elizabeth Josif

Rotarian Charles Hubbard's daughter, Elizabeth Josif was our speaker this week (23/1/18) telling us about 'The Charity for The Buscot Babies Ward' at the Royal Berks, their fund raising is quite remarkable and Elizabeth told us that they raised over 2k via the Santa Run!
Quite an achievement especially when we heard that they also raised many thousands of pounds for new high-tech equipment.
 Read more >

The Mayor of Reading speaks to the Club   First New Year Meet- we welcomed the Mayor of Reading

The Mayor

At our first meet of the New Year we were delighted to welcome the Mayor of Reading, Rose Williams as our speaker. 2017/18 is the Mayors second term of office, her previous term being 1997/1998. Rose was born and bred in Reading she talked us through her busy schedule, revealing a very full and varied diary.  Read more >

The Club receives a Message of thanks


Warm hats welcomed at the Drop in Centre Reading.
Our thanks to John Osborne who purchased warm winter hats and delivered them to Myra Fowler at the Drop In Centre.

Poverty and loneliness impact millions at Christmas

Loneliness and poverty are problems that ruin Christmas for millions of people each year.
In response to this, a festive lunch was organised by Christian Community Action at Caversham Baptist church in Reading, for those in need.
Age UK say that 873,000 people will have little or no contact with others on Christmas Day and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation estimates around 20% of the UK population is living in poverty.
 Read more >

The Club's Christmas Lunch

Graham and Paul Harris

A thoroughly enjoyable and lively Christmas Lunch at Pepe Sale welcomed the 'end of term' festivities for members on December 19th. The meeting was further enhanced by presenting one of our members with the 'Paul Harris Award'.
A big surprise was in store for Graham Broadhurst. Graham has stepped up to the line on many occasions. Not only had he in previous years been our President, but this year he agreed to take on the Santa Run event when the previous organiser stepped down. That turned out to be no mean feat and it was a great success. Add to this stepping up to organise the Golf Day 2017 Graham's year was very busy and productive. It was with great pleasure that Eric Moyse, our President, presented Graham with the award for his services to Rotary.
Congratulations Graham!
For more about the lunch follow the link.
 Read more >

Young Carers

young carers

During our December 12th meet we enjoyed a very inspiring talk by Tracey Daniels who works for Reading Borough Council in charge of Young Carers Assessment. Tracey also runs a Young Carers' Project for young people aged between 5 and 19 who are defined as 'carers'. Tracey explained how they define a young carer.:
'A child or young person who cares for a relative and carries out an inappropriate level of duties around the home or provides emotional or physical support to their parents or siblings.'
This means that the young carer might help around the house doing the cleaning, making the beds or making the dinner. They might help get their younger siblings to and from school or do their homework. Perhaps they are responsible for helping their disabled relative get around, so they might help lift them in and out of the bath or on and off the toilet. Or they might support their relative after they have been drinking, or when their mood is low. Each young carer is unique, and their responsibilities differ.
 Read more >

The finishing line!

santarun2017 (9)
santarun2017 (11)

The Reading Santa Run 2017 was a great success! Despite the drizzle and cold the participants were in great spirits and all seem to thoroughly enjoy the event.

Once the 5km runners had been 'warmed up' by an instructor from Buzz Gym, one of the main sponsors of the race, The Mayor of Reading Rose Williams started the race of Santa's at 9.30.

Follow the links to the official pictures of the day: Read more >

The Medaille Trust

The Medaille Trust

Despite a later arrival at our meet on 28th November 2017, Speaker Sharon Westby from the Medaille Trust. gave us a very interesting overview of the work her charity did.
The Trust is a charity based in the United Kingdom and founded by several Catholic Congregations in 2006. Its main aim is to end the trafficking and enslavement of women, children and young men to the sex industry. The trust provides safe homes for many of the victims.
 Read more >

A thank you from the MS Society

Please follow the links.
 Read more >

Christmas Puds for the Salvation Army Hampers

xmas puds

Eric Moyse, President of the Rotary Club of Reading seen handing over the first of 500 Christmas puddings to Major Richard Welch, Commanding Officer, Reading Salvation Army Citadel. Also in the picture is Matt Stone, Salvation Army Community Development Officer who is in charge of distributing hampers to needy families in the area. This is the second year that the Club has donated puddings. Matt stated that this Christmas they will be feeding about 3,500 people and these puddings will add a real touch of Christmas Fare to the hampers. Read more >

Children In Need

Sandra & Alan

Rotarians Sandra Tucker and Alan Haine were part of 35 Rotarians (including Pudsey) from all the Reading Rotary clubs that took part in the Children in Need collection at Reading station.
This year we collected over£4200 - a 25% increase on last years collection

Poppy Day

Lest We Forget

A big thank you to the 14 people who gave up their time on Saturday 4th November to sell Poppies for the British Legion n the Oracle Shopping Centre. Also a big thank you to Rotarian John Osborne who stepped in at the very last minute to run the collections. Initial indications are that we collected around £2,000, similar to last year. This money goes to a very good cause.

The National Trust

NT logo

On Halloween evening the Reading Rotary met at the Caversham Golf Club, after a social gathering in the bar the evening began with a very enjoyable meal followed by a fascinating talk by a well-informed Sebastian Conway, House and Collection Manager at Basildon Park in nearby Pangbourne.  Read more >

Why I am a Rotarian

To find out why follow the link.
 Read more >

MLMS and a better BREXIT for young people

Amy & Eric

Our meeting on October 24th gave us a talk by Amy Longland who works for the charity 'My Life My Say' (MLMS) based in Paddington, London. MLMS is a national, non-partisan, youth-led movement on a mission to secure a better Brexit for young people and to evolve relationships between young people and decision-makers.
During her talk, Amy described to us the report that MLMS has produced in partnership with the London School of Economics, which outlines what young people want to see from Brexit.
This self assured and confident young speaker was very well received, with the audience completely absorbed in what she had to tell us. A refreshing and informed view from a young person ..... food for thought!
 Read more >

The Rotary Foundation


All members present at the October 2nd meeting were addressed by Karen Eveleigh, District Rotary Foundation Chair. Karen explained to us the meaning of the Rotary Foundation, how their aim is to do good in the world, mostly through humanitarian projects.
Foundation has existed for over 100 years having started with a donation of USD26.50 in 1917 by a Rotary Club. Today most donations to the charity are from individual Rotarians and Rotary Clubs.
 Read more >

Water Survival Box

water survival box logo
water survival box

Our President received a letter of thanks from Tony Quinn, Chairman of Rotary Humanitarian Projects, thanking the club for their cheque for £500 towards the Rotary Hurricane IRMA appeal.
Tony stated that they are very grateful to clubs like ours for helping them contribute to support people who have lost everything, he continued: 'The current situation is that we have 500 boxes ready to be flown to the Caribbean and until 2 days ago (1st Oct 2017) we had plans to send them to St Croix via the District 7020 Rotary Disaster Committee for onward distribution to several islands in the vicinity. Unfortunately, Hurricane Marie hit the island yesterday and we are awaiting news about the state of the airport and warehousing.
Your donation is very much appreciated and will help us replenish the stock we are sending. I have no doubt that we will continue to send boxes to the Caribbean for some time yet'
Tony ask the President to thank members on his behalf.
As a result of our funding a Water Box a matching anonymous donation has been made to send, in addition, a Shelter Box for the hurricane disaster in the Club's name. Read more >

A thank you from the MS Society

MS logo

'Thank you so much for all your hard work finding the donation (for 8 oxygen masks). This is fantastic news and we are very grateful to receive it. Living with MS is a lifelong battle and oxygen treatment is a very beneficial, cost effective, life changing treatment.'
Samantha Harper - Fundraising Manager.
PS We have recruited most of our physiotherapy team and their children for the Santa run - we can't wait! Read more >

Duke of Edinburgh's Award

DofE logo

Our speaker on 26th September 2017 was Kevin Dennis, Field Officer for the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme for West Berkshire. Some members remember Kevin's father Clem Dennis, who was our Club President in 1982 /1983..
In his youth, Kevin told us he was a candidate in the forerunner of RYLA courses, he enjoyed it very much and it set him on his career course as a teacher and DofE award supporter. Kevin explained how there are three levels of awards, Bronze for 14-year old's Silver for those aged 15 and Gold.for youngsters of 16 years and upwards.
 Read more >



Rtn. Jack Holt announced the launch of the Rotary Crocus Campaign 2017.
Jack also stated that this must have been one of their most popular school projects ever. Six local primary schools (with whom we have previously been in contact regarding our School Dictionary Project, Life Education and more specifically some interesting gardening projects) were written to and offered either 500 or 250 FREE purple crocus bulbs as part of the 'Ridding the World of Polio 2017 International Campaign'. The team was delighted when all the six schools replied immediately with four requests for 500 bulbs and two for 250 bulbs. 100% success rate!
 Read more >

2017 Reading Charity Santa Run is Launched!

On Thursday 14thSeptember we officially launched the 2017 Reading Santa Run. Roc Search hosted the launch reception at their offices at The Blade in Forbury Gardens. Based on the seventh floor of this impressive building over 50 of our guests enjoyed the panoramic view of Reading at night, as we all met and sipped our welcome drinks.
Members of charities who will benefit from the funds raised at this year's race, joined the organising and production teams along with other dignitaries to hear from Graham Broadhurst who gave an excellent speech on the 'state of play' to date for the Reading Santa Run 2017.
 Read more >

The Fate of the Yazidi Tribe in Iran

Magdalena Filipova-Rivers

Magdalena Filipova-Rivers

I met with Magdalena Filipova -Rivers - who along with a team of volunteers spent the summer working in Greece with refugees who have fled conflicts in the Middle East. Maggie works on various refugee related projects including managing Reading City of Sanctuary.
Reports alleged that Islamic militants have trapped up to 40,000 members of Iraq's Yazidi minority communities on mount Sinjar, without food or water, have generated an international outcry and spurred the US into considering a military led humanitarian action. The Yazidi or Yezidis are a Kurdish religious minority or an ethno religious group indigenous to Northern Mesopotamia who are strictly endogamous. They have been subject to much persecution throughout history due to their misunderstood faith.
 Read more >

Gabby & Tom - Our RYLA experience at Rhos-y-Gwaliau

Gabby Tom

In July of this year, 25 youngsters aged 18 to 25 joined the Rotary Youth Leadership Award Course in Rhos-y-Gwaliau, Former participants had raved about the course which they had been on the year before, and had put Gabby & Tom in touch with Rotarians Carole Lowe and Geoff Smith. Fast forward a couple of months and they were being picked up from their homes by Rotarians, and joining a bus full of mainly strangers from a variety of backgrounds, about to spend the week together in Snowdonia. Read more >

Rotary Charity Event Golfers Were Teed Off!

golfer 2

A very early start and under cloudy skies the 29th Rotary Club of Reading, Charity Golf Day teed off on Tuesday September 5th held at the Reading Golf Club in Kidmore End, the weather couldn't dampen spirits and a great time was had by all. Read more >

The John James Memorial Trophy

A new competition was added to the 29th Rotary Golf event this year, the John James Memorial Trophy. You will all remember John who was a keen golfer and a member of Rotary for over 30 years, he was our President during 2007/8. John sadly passed away in June this year, so the Club voted to create a golf trophy in his memory.
His wife June happily accepted the trophy earlier in the afternoon from Graham Broadhurst and was very pleased to present the John James Memorial Trophy to Peter Mason from the Reading Abbey Club who achieved a score of 29 points.
 Read more >

A Magnificent Man in his Flying Machine!   Alan James on 'Flying your own Spitfire'


Our 2017 August evening meet was brought alive when Alan James took to the floor to tell us how like many other small boys his childhood passion was to build model aircraft, he remembers saving his pocket money to rush out to buy a model aircraft from the local craft shop to build.
Alan's passion with flying was inspired by the planes he watched take off and land at the RAF base near his home in Reading. As a teenager he took glider lessons, and he was hooked! Alan explained how from building balsa wood model airplanes as a child he progressed to building his own Spitfire plane in his garage as a grown up!
 Read more >

Publicising Santa Run at Englefield

At Englefield

David Barrett and Tim Metcalfe plus Marilyn Grundrill (unseen but in full Santa suit) raising our profile.

Well done Reading Mencap

Please follow the links to see how this charity benefited from a Reading Rotary Community Project grant.
 Read more >

Sand Dam Project underway

Rotary's first dam in India - with a Rotary contribution of £15,494.
The dam is for the Kirjan Bhoja community in the Marwar region. Amazingly, it appears that an estimate of over 3,000 people will benefit from this dam and maybe as many as 9,000. Excellent Development have been engaged to build the dam and they are doing this with a Rajasthan based organisation, The Jal Bhagirathi Foundation. Please follow the link for a video clip.
 Read more >

Money Sense


Becky Gavin and David Dorlin, volunteers from the NatWest Bank staff, joined us today (8th Aug) to give members an overview of the programme they help run to offer free and impartial financial education for 5-18-year olds. NatWest MoneySense uses real-life money moments - like getting pocket money, buying a mobile phone or saving for a first car - to make learning about money feel relevant and fun. The programme has been created with the help of teachers, parents and young people. It is linked directly to the school curriculum and has received the Financial Education Quality Mark and is has an accreditation from Young Enterprise. Read more >

New member Simon Creffield

Simon being presented with his Rotary badge

We were delighted to welcome Simon Creffield to our club on August 8th. Simon was Introduced to our club by Jack Holt (seconded by Rod Cole). Simon lives in Newbury, is a dedicated foodie also a keen golfer. He has been captain of the Newbury and Crookham Golf club. Read more >

Camp Mohawk

Camp Mohawk

Camp Mohawk

Annabel Hill

At this week's meeting (1st August) members were treated to a very informative and interesting talk by Annabel Hill, from Camp Mohawk based in Wargrave. What started off, many years ago as a 'camping out in the woods' experience for children from Inner London cities, is now a wonderful purpose built multi-functional day centre for children and young people with special needs. Camp Mohawk is set in beautiful countryside just outside Wargrave in Berkshire, providing a range of activities, facilities and natural space to encourage those with a variety of special needs to play, socialise and learn in a secure environment.
Most importantly staff and volunteers give support to the families of these children, here they can socialise and have some 'me time' while the children are kept busy and happy.
 Read more >

My Journey to Rotary - from Tim Metcalfe

Tim with Richard

Tim with Richard Stone

Tim Metcalfe spoke to members at our meeting on the 25th July, giving us an understanding of the pathway that brought him to becoming a member of the Rotary Club of Reading just before Easter 2017.
He was introduced to Rotary, along with Roger Butler, by Richard Stone and we are delighted to have him on board.
 Read more >

RYLA 2017


The winning team!

Geoff enjoyed RYLA again this year and spent one day on Barmouth Slabs watching and encouraging the candidates learning how to set up an abseil. This is not only highly technical but also involves learning complex knots!
 Read more >

GRASS ROOTS WORK IN GREECE (Reading Refugee Support Group 'Embrace Refugees')   ReadingRefugee Support Group 'Embrace Refugees'


A ‘new kitchen’ in the settlement

Members may well remember a visit from Maggie who gave us a thumbnail of her planned visit to the Volvi UNHCR camp in Greece in the Summer. Maggie will hopefully return to tell us more in the late Autumn as a speaker. She works in the U.K. helping immigrants with interest free loans to help them start businesses that will give them independence from the state support. Previously she worked for a charity based in Reading that supported mission work in Latin America. Maggie has been working for Reading Refugee Support Group and was the organiser of the very successful 'Reading a City of Sanctuary' event.
We have an update from Maggie and to learn more follow the link.
 Read more >

FAST - Stroke Awareness


Our speaker this week (18th July 2017) was Richard Phillips (Husband of Ann Phillips of Reading Matins) who spoke to us about stroke awareness. Richard told us that he had suffered a stroke when he was around 57 and here we are over 15 years later, with the help of his family Richard is leading a full and active life despite being affected by the stroke down his left- hand side. He has been an active member of the Stroke Association for many years and delivered an informative and thought-provoking talk. Read more >

Jack Holt wins the Terry Simpson Cup for 2017

Jack the golfer

On July 12th RAGS - Reading Abbey Golf Society but now a combined society
with Rotary Club of Reading - held their annual competition for the Terry
Simpson Cup. Terry was a very active member and past President of Reading
Abbey and a keen golfer and following his sad demise his wife Sarah
presented this Cup to RAGS.
Last year's winner Peter Mason of Abbey presented the cup to
this year's winner, Jack Holt from the Rotary club of Reading.
 Read more >

St. Peter's Fete, Caversham Court 2017

As part of our quest for new members, for the second year in succession the Club took a site at St Peter's Church Fete held on July 8th. A large crowd taking advantage of a beautiful day at Caversham Court was able to see our banners, literature, a Santa suit and a Shelterbox -- all on display to show what Rotary is all about. Read more >

Berkshire Womens Aid

BWA log
Liz Terry with Eric

Liz Terry with new Rotary President Eric Moyse

Our speaker on July 4th was LIZ TERRY who returned to give members and guests an update on BWA, and the current situation regarding our exciting project Orchard House for Berkshire Woman's Aid.
Liz explained that the charity was formed in the 1970's and the first refuge opened for women who were victims of domestic violence, in 1975. Since then the profile of needs has changed dramatically, whether this is awareness of being able to seek help or an increase in domestic violence, Liz could not say. Last year BWA had to turn away 73 people looking for that place of safety. That means for every victim we took in to refuge we turned 3 people away. Calls to our helpline grew by 58% last year.
As the needs of victims change and recognising the positive changes in the level of understanding of Domestic Abuse in other agencies, BWA welcomes the opportunity to look at the balance of the way services are delivered in the area and believe that some changes can match local needs more effectively. Our experience shows that outreach is a very effective way of supporting many service users including the impact on children who witness the abuse.
 Read more >

New President Eric Moyes takes the reins from outgoing President Sandra Tucker - and two Paul Harris awards are presented

Sandra anoints Eric

Eric bows before Sandra!

At the Hand Over meet on June 27th, 2017 we bade farewell to outgoing President Sandra and we all welcomed Eric Moyes as the incoming President. Bill Montague became SVP with Amir Kharkowa as JVP. David Drew remains as Secretary and John Brennan as Treasurer
Sandra thanked everyone for their hard work and support during her term of Office, with special thanks to David Drew and Chris Nicholls, and to both she presented the Paul Harris award in recognition of their support and dedicated efforts. Read more >

The FAITH Christian Group (FCG).


On the 20th June our speaker was Amanda Bayley from the FAITH Christian Group (FCG). Amanda gave a very informative talk explaining how FCG began in 1990 as a response to a need which its founder, Jim McConnell, saw on the streets of Reading. In the beginning, the FAITH office was based in the front room of his house. Following those beginnings, a small van was purchased, and a drop in centre opened up, running every Sunday at St Andrew's Church hall near the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. FAITH then went mobile with the purchase of what was to become the Candle Tea Bar that has been out in Reading Town Centre on Sunday afternoons almost every Sunday.
 Read more >

95th anniversary


The year was June 1922 when Rotary Club of Reading was first formed,only the second Daughter club of the London Rotary Club, and here we are ninety five years later and still doing an amazing job! The meeting on 6th of June 2017 celebrated the passing years with a wonderful special 95th anniversary cake baked by the chef at Pepe Sale for all to enjoy. Rotary Assistant Governor Tony Eldridge joined us for the meeting and meal along with fellow guest of Jack Holt, Simon Creffield.
 Read more >



A very inspirational, enthusiastic and thoroughly enjoyable talk was given to fellow Rotarians and guests that attended the evening meeting on May 30th by Rtn. Tony Cowling.
Tony is involved in many very worthwhile projects and gives the lion's share of his time and energy to those projects. The main subject of Tony's talk this evening was around a knowledge transfer programme relating to renewable energy for Eritrea. He was very keen for them to move forward with some geothermal power plants.
 Read more >

Bottle greenhouse at Oxford Road Community School

Jack & Tony

Jack & Tony at it again!

Ace chippie Tony building the frame for a plastic bottle greenhouse at 8am at Oxford Road Community School. Jack just held the other end of the timber.
This was part of the Youth Team's Gardening 4 Schools Project.
 Read more >

A Jammy Idea to Raise Funds!


Jars of Purple4Polio Plum Jam were handed out to Rotarians attending the evening meeting on Tuesday 14th March by Rod Cole. Not for free though! In return a donation was requested for £2.00 per jar. Funds raised will go to the End Polio Now project. Proceeds will be further swelled when recipients of the Jam, will be asked to fill their empty jar with coins and return them to the Rod.

Preserving Reading's Past and Shaping its future.

Members who attended this week's meeting were treated to a very interesting talk from Richard Bennett, Chairman of the Reading Civic Society. Richard began his introduction with a fun quiz detailing pictures of some historic and interesting items to be found around Reading, challenging members to test their local knowledge. Read more >

Diabetes - what you need to know and more!

diabetes logo
Diabetes UK

Rtn. Frank Parkinson introduced Diabetes speaker, Pat Taylor

Our speaker on 2nd May was Diabetes volunteer Pat Taylor who gave us an interesting insight into understanding Diabetes Type 1 and 2.
Pat a sufferer herself of Type 1 diabetes, gave us her first-hand experience of how Diabetes can affect your life. Advice was also given on how you can improve your health should you be diagnosed with Diabetes Type 2.
Diabetes UK recommended that it requires a lifestyle change, healthier diet and increase activity. this can often bring about great improvements.
Follow to link to find out more:
 Read more >

Readifood at Waitrose

Readifood stand

Bank Holiday Sunday saw Reading Rotarians volunteer at the ReadiFood Collection point in the Waitrose store, Caversham.

Nigel Penn-Simkins ably assisted by Sheila Hobbs, manned the Readifood collection point under the guidance of Alison Peyton, who is the local coordinator from the Readifood Charity. The Readifood charity is run by FAITH Christian Group who do an excellent job in the collection and distribution of food parcels to people in need across Greater Reading. Readifood work in conjunction with many other organisations throughout Reading. We look forward to hearing their story when Alison speaks to the club at the 20th June meeting.
Follow this link to learn more:

A Charity Bike Ride for PACT

Lady on bike

Parents And Children Together (PACT) helps hundreds of families every year through adoption services and community projects across London and the South. PACT was founded in 1911 by Bishop Paget who formed the Diocesan Council for the Prevention and Rescue Work. Lord Stanmore, the son of Lord Aberdeen, Prime Minister at the time provided the first donation of £100 to enable the Council to start its work.
Their first rescue worker was a Miss Sharpe who on her bicycle, began visiting unmarried mothers to help them build a better life for them and their children.

Emma Owen, Head of Fundraising and Marketing at PACT today, the 25th April, gave us a brief but very interesting overview into activities of this leading UK charity.
 Read more >

Gardening for Schools - The Youth Team


In the Winter of 2015, we identified 13 local primary schools, with whom we had a connection through Dictionaries or Life Education. Each of these schools were written to by the team, enquiring if we could help with any gardening ideas - for example raised vegetable beds etc. Five of the primary schools we contacted responded, accepting our offer of help in 2016. However, one school then fell silent but site visits were made to the remaining four: Oxford Road Community, Moorlands, Meadow Park Academy and St Anne's, Caversham Primaries. Read more >


Easter Bunny!

An Easter Egg treat was delivered to many disadvantaged children and older members of the community in Berkshire this week by Reading Rotary Clubs. The clubs assisted the Thames Vale Vultures Motorcycle Owners Group (TVVMOG) to distribute the hundreds of Easter eggs they had gathered at their collection point in the foyer, at Asda in Lower Earley.
To help with the distribution, members of Reading Rotary Club collected over 600 eggs from their storage in Woodley. With all the eggs well boxed up, they were distributed to the following local organisations: PHAB, Christian Community in Action, Alexander Devine Hospice, Berkshire Woman's Aid, Articulate, JAC, Reading Family Aid, Lakeside Care Home, The Mount Care Home in time for Easter.
 Read more >

A real-life story ....


A real-life story was brought to us on our 28th March meet via Nick Harbourne, from the Reading Refugee Support Group. Nick has spoken to us before, but this time he introduced us to someone who had experienced first-hand the work of the RRSG.
Faraj, was a highly successful Human Rights Lawyer in Eastern Libya before the 'Arab Spring Uprising'. Faraj spoke emotionally about his journey over the past few years from a prominent lawyer to a penniless refugee here in the UK. He took us through the loss of personal items, his kidnap, torture and finally his escape. Arriving in the UK alone, he was initially settled in Cardiff where he was supported by the Cardiff Rotary Club. Following much paperwork, Faraj had success, when his family finally arrived safely here in the UK. All are now well settled in the UK, thanks to the great help of RRSG.
Faraj is now a trustee for Reading Refugee Support Group, helping in their tireless work here in Reading .
Read more or donate at
 Read more >

Lydia came to talk SENSE to us

Lydia Clark

Lydia Clark, from SENSE, was the guest speaker at our March 21st meet. Lydia gave us an enthusiastic overview of SENSE, the national charity that supports people who are deafblind, have sensory impairments or complex needs, to enjoy more independent lives.
SENSE is 62 years old this year and was started in 1955 by two mothers whose children were born deafblind. Read more at: Read more >

Santa's Run to raise an 'Olympic' amount for charity

Cheque presentation

An evening dinner held at Caversham Heath Golf Club on 14th March was to celebrate and acknowledge the amazing success of the 2016 Santa Run. The event was sponsored by many of Berkshires leading companies and raised £35,333,74 for local charities. The main sponsors were represented by David Brommel and Trevor Doran from ROC Search. Also sponsors Vail Williams were represented by James Bennet.
Following presentations by Rotarian and Santa Run commentator, David Holby-Wilinksi spoke of how he achieved a Guinness World Record, on a rowing machine. An heroic effort, as was his commentary!
David was followed by Claire Rhodes talking about Daisy's Dream activities. Speakers Alison Brickly, Haley and Jake, enlightened us on the activities of No 5. Both charities received cheques for £10,146 from President Sandra Tucker. Many other charities received a donation from the fund, see our Facebook page.
Many thanks to all Rotarians involved in the planning and implementation of this wonderful event.
More info visit:
 Read more >

High Sheriff of Berkshire addresses the Joint Services Evening

High Sheriff of Berkshire

The High Sheriff of Berkshire

A Joint Services Dinner, was held at the Holiday Inn, Winnersh, on Tuesday 7th March, and was hosted by the Rotary Club of Reading Maiden Erlegh.
The guest speaker was the High Sheriff of Berkshire, Mrs V J Fishburn. Addressing over 150 people who attended the Dinner, the High Sheriff spoke enthusiastically about her very busy role as High Sheriff, and her regular involvement with the Police, the Justice System and many charities.
Our President, plus six other members of Reading Rotary Club, were joined by representatives from a wide selection of Rotary clubs in our area, including many from local Lion and Tangent organisations.
Along with the other clubs, Reading Rotary Club had the opportunity to set up a display area, highlighting some of our current projects. These including the very successful Santa Run event, which attracted plenty of interest and very positive comments.
 Read more >

We are Flying for Life!


MAF-UK (Mission Aviation Fellowship)

At our March 7th meet, John Ledger from MAF-UK gave us an excellent insight in to what his organisation does. Few of us were previously aware of MAF-UK yet it has been operating since 1945. Started by two former WW2 pilots with just one Miles Gemini plane (made in Woodley!). This Organisation now operates over 130 light aircraft in over 25 countries bringing help and healing to the most remote communities of the globe. MAF-UK assist over 1500 partners worldwide including OXFAM, CHRISTIAN AID and TEARFUND.
An enlightening 15 minute talk by John, that we all enjoyed immensely.
Follow the link for more information. Read more >

'The Engine Room Project'

Paul at work

Paul at work

The 28th February 2017 saw a visit to the Club of a new organisation called 'The Engine Room.' They have been in existence for just under a year and seek to help people with mental health problems through art. Finance is obtained through Crowdfunding and Lisa Gibbs who came to talk to us is a leading light in this infant organisation. They seek to empower the people who are referred to them mainly through social services by their engaging in art, even if they have not shown any previous talent or inclination. Read more >

Visitors from overseas to our meeting of the 14th February 2017

Rtn & Mrs Firake

Our Club's fellowship meeting on 14th February was graced with the visit of husband and wife Dattatraya and Asha Firake. Rotarian Dattatraya, whose work background is in engineering, has been President of the Kankaria Club on two occasions while Asha is a former president of the local Inner Wheel club. They were the guests of Tony Cowling who is a neighbour of their daughter.  Read more >

RAHAB 7th February 2017 meeting


RAHAB is one of the projects of the local charity Mustard Tree Foundation. The project started as a means of helping victims of sexual exploitation but recently it has broadened its remit to try to help victims of all types of exploitation occurring in Reading. This has proved to be a monumental task. Naomi came on 7 February 2017 to tell the club about her work, which also includes making people aware of the problem.  Read more >

A Magical Evening


Ian Keable Entertains!
Sleight of hand, legerdemain, hocus pocus, prestidigitation and illusion were all at work when magician Ian Keable came to the Caversham Heath Golf Club to entertain members and guests of Reading Rotary Club at our evening meeting on 31 January 2017. Ian, who is a Gold Star member of the Magic Circle, holds the Magic Circle Comedy Magic Award and it is not hard to see why. Your appetite whetted?
 Read more >

A Club Member's Fund Raising Activity

This is one member's latest fundraising project - running 7 Marathons in 7 days carrying a Viking ship!
To learn more follow the links by clicking on the heading or on  Read more >

Thank you letters

Thank you letters from Launchpad and Just Around the Corner
To see follow the links. Read more >

Scleroderma & Raynaud's

Henry Mc Ginty is fundraising officer for the UK charity Scleroderma & Raynaud's UK (S&RUK) and on 24th January 2017 he came to tell the Club about its work.  Read more >


A new project from the Youth Team. Please click on the heading to learn more.

Draught Busters new website

Please follow the link to see the latest
 Read more >