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Chairman's Report 2019/20

Introduction

I remember sitting down at about the same time last year and writing my Chairman’s Report. There was chaos in Parliament as vote after vote on Brexit was defeated and we were heading for a General Election. It seemed an extraordinary time, disruptive and depressing. However, as I sit here now writing my report it all seems like a walk in the park. This year, with the pandemic, so many things have changed for so many people. I think we all thought it would be back “to normal” in a few months but how wrong we all were. The year 2020 will be a year one will never forget, very much like the Big Freeze of 1962/63 or the Kennedy Assassination.

No doubt many MAST Members have experienced many ups and downs since it all started. We have been shocked, saddened, worried and annoyed about not being able to go about our daily lives like we used to. Furthermore, we have all experienced being unable to visit families, loved ones and friends. It’s all unnatural and its certainly not good for our well being. But there must be a glimmer of hope and inspiration coming soon. It all sounds very encouraging now that a proven vaccine is on the horizon, giving us hope of getting back to some normality in the not too distant future.

Effects of Coronavirus

With MAST it all started when we had to cancel the quiz night in March this year between us and the Ladies Friendship Group. Then it was lockdown and all the years activities were either postponed or cancelled. All postponed speakers have been moved to their appropriate dates in 2021.

But when we came out of the first lockdown and the restrictions were eased Stewart Beardon came up with the idea of a Golf Afternoon at the Tilsworth Golf Club. Both he and Brian Jones organised the event with great success. Afterwards we all had drinks and sandwiches at the 19th hole. All social distancing of course.

Some other activities have been taking place behind the scenes throughout the year. MAST Members Brian Gosling, Andrew Cant, Richard Cook, Pete Lidford (and his wife Louise) have given up their valuable time cutting the grass, strimming and weeding around the church in the St Johns churchyard. Also, Steve Waters and Brian Houston have volunteered to wind up the church clock on a weekly basis.

I held my one and only MAST Committee meeting on the 17th September to discuss the way forward for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021. As you all know from my email dated 21st September 2020 nothing is currently happening but lets all keep our fingers crossed for 2021. There is talk in high places that we may get back to some normality around Easter so let us all remain optimistic, we shall see.

It just remains for me say is hang in there and keep ones chin up. Surely that pint and a chin wag is not that far away now. Keep well and stay safe as they say.

Paul Weir - MAST Chairman

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