Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Thinking of joining?...

If you are not already a member you can join from this month and get 15 months for the price of 12. Anyone who joins from this month will pay only the annual membership fee of £34.70 for 2014 so bring your cheque book, pay no more guest fees this year or next and you can attend as many meetings as you like. WI membership means you are not limited to only 3 meetings a year, it's very good value for money at £3.15 for a night out and you get many other member benefits too, including discounts and not forgetting the wonderful magazine WI Life.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

May meeting and AGM

Millie Moon were at our very first meeting and they came back to join us for our first birthday.

This time we learned how to do English paper piecing which, for me at least, has proven to be addictive!

This meeting we also held our first AGM.

Storm, Emma and Laura gave a review of the year covering the meetings we've held (astronomy, clay modelling, wreath making, midwifery, wine and cheese, self defence and crafty fabric makes to mention a few), the fundraising we've done and how we have worked to support local causes and businesses.

We believe in being an active, community focused and ethical part of Frome and we feel like we have achieved that.

The accounts for 2012 were also available to view.

Gilly kindly gave the officers some lovely flowers - thank you Gilly!

We then voted on the officers and committee for 2013. They are:

President - Storm Fagan
Treasurer - Emma Rodger
Secretary - Laura Francis

Gilly Newell
Rachel Lloyd
Tina Meldon
Ella Richardson
Beverley Russell-Edney

Thanking the outgoing committee members for all their help and support over the last year:

Sophie Shields
Tamsin Westbrook
Lara Hain

We raised the proposed resolution for the NFWI which is to support our high streets. There was no argument opposing this resolution. Therefore Frome WI are supporting this resolution.

Once we had covered the AGM we got on with hand stitching and, as always, being slightly in awe of the Millie Moon ladies' crafty skill.

Thank you to all our members and the ladies who have visited and supported us. If you have any feedback - good or bad - please let us know by emailing WI.frome@gmail.com.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Our 1st birthday!

Frome WI has reached its first birthday! After a wonderful year it is time to hold our first Annual General Meeting. This gives our members the chance to see what we have been up to over the last year and look through the accounts. 

We then vote on the officers and committee members for the next year. The officers hold the positions of President, Secretary and Treasurer and the committee is an additional 5 ladies. 

We are always looking for willing volunteers to get involved with the FromeWI. So if you would like to have a say in the topics we cover at our meetings and help keep the WI running then it would be great to see you on the committee. The commitment is fairly minimal - one committee meeting a month (usually with wine!) and a few tasks in between the meetings. We totally bear in mind the fact that most people work, have children and busy lives so the committee work is shared and generally fairly small. 

If you would like to join the committee please come along to our meeting this Thursday, or send us an email at wi.frome@gmail.com

Along with looking at our branch, the AGM is a chance to discuss this year's resolution from the NFWI. 

Millie Moon
Millie Moon, the gorgeous haberdashery and sewing school on Catherine Hill came along to our very first meeting and have been so supportive of the Frome Wi over the last year. To celebrate our first birthday we thought it would be great for Mille Moon to be our guests. This time they are going to show us how to do English paper piecing which is a skill that can be applied to lots of projects. 

Don't be scared if, like a lot of us you've never even heard of English paper piecing - our meetings are always open to ladies of any skill level. 

We really look forward to seeing you all there.

The meeting is £3 to for guests, or you can join for the year for £33. 

As this meeting is a workshop there will be a small charge for materials (if you would like to bring your own please email us and we'll tell you what to bring). 

On a personal note I would like to thank everyone who has supported us over the last year - taken part as an officer, been on the committee, come to our meetings and been speakers - the Frome WI has been a wonderful thing, I've met lots of interesting and lovely people and learnt a lot. I have also eaten a lot of cake! 

Storm Fagan

Monday, 15 April 2013

April's Frome WI meeting details

April 18th, 2013
United Reform Church Hall
Whittox Lane, Frome

This month we are making spring wreaths. There is a £2 charge for materials, which will cover a 25cm foam wreath base and lots of lovely embellishments we have collected. We also have lots of flower die cuts and even a Big Shot die cut machine available to use.

However, we do need glue guns - so if you have one please bring it along. We also need your scraps, so if you have fabric scraps, paper scraps and yarn hanging around, especially if you don't mind sharing, please bring them to use.

If you have any questions, please just email us or ask on our Facebook group and we'll do our best to get back to you.

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Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Frome Group Meeting

Do you want to go to the next Frome Group Meeting? Let us know if you do!

Here is the agenda:

1. Jerusalem
2. Apologies
3. Record of last meeting
4. Group Business

(a) Date, time and venue for next meeting

​Business meeting: TUESDAY 9 JULY 2013 – NUNNEY VILLAGE HALL


​Competition: Theme: Musical instrument. Medium: Cake. Size 12” x 12” x 12” maximum

(b) Notes of: Group Co-ordinator – Caroline Harris
Group Treasurer – Mary Mears
WIA – Eileen Hurd


6. Thanks to Speaker – KILMERSDON WI

7. Refreshments

8. Entertainment


10. Thanks to Hostess Wl – NUNNEY WI

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

2013 Programme

2013 Programme
United Reform Church Hall, Whittox Lane, Frome
3rd Thursday of every month 7.30pm

January 17th - Jo Luckstead Ceramics Workshop*
Join us to make lovely Valentine themed ceramics

February 21st - Tae Kwon Do and Self Defence
A demonstration of Tae Kwon Do, followed by a chance to learn some simple self-defence moves

March 21st - Stargazing
An evening learning about the stars (weather permitting). Don't forget to wrap up warm!

April 18th - Make a Spring wreath*
Make a beautiful wreath to welcome in Spring

May 16th - Millie Moon Workshop*
An evening of crafting led by the ladies from Millie Moon

June 20th - Bramble & Wild*
Grace from local award winning florist Bramble & Wild will show us how to make a corsage and buttonhole. We will make our own corsage to take home, there will be a £3.50 charge for the flowers and materials.

July 18th - Spinners & Weavers Guild
The Spinners & Weavers Guild meet in the room below us! Come and find out more about what they do

August 15th - Summer Party
Join us for an evening of entertainment, details TBC.
Enter the Bake Off.
Open meeting, friends and partners welcome
£3 per person (non-members)

September 19th - Bertinet Bakery
Richard Bertinet of the world renowned Bertinet Bakery in Bath will join us, demonstrate some baking and tell us about what they do. You can also ask him all your baking questions.

October 17th - Spooky Celebration!
Come along to find out more about the (historical)
Witches of Somerset
Enter your best Pumpkin based
baking into our competition

November 21st - Make a wire bird*
Learn how to make a small wire sculpture

December 5th - No Meeting
Christmas Craft Fayre

Friday, 22 February 2013

Kicking butt

Really good to see everyone having a go at the self defence, knife defence and pad drills at last night's meeting. Hopefully you will never have to use any of the techniques but you might not feel quite so vulnerable now at times knowing you would have some idea of how to get out of grabs etc.
If anyone is interested in Becky Lynch's ladies only Fight Fit classes, here is a link to the Fight Fit Facebook page:
For those feeling inspired to learn a martial art (or wishing to encourage their kids to take it up), have a look at Jamie Woodland's Black Belt academy:
Or contact Becky on 07841 115297

Thursday, 21 February 2013


Hello ladies,

Looking forward to seeing you all at our meeting this evening...please remember subs are overdue for members who haven't re-subscribed for 2013. If you could bring your cheque books or some cash we'd be very grateful, £33 for the year or £3 per visit (maximum 3 per year).

Thank you :)

Saturday, 26 January 2013

January's gardening post

Hello Ladies

Firstly, Happy New Year to you all – hope you had a good Christmas (although it seems like a long time ago now, the current weather is a sharp reminder that we are actually in the thrusts of a chilly English winter!).
I very much enjoyed your Christmas Faire, so nice to see so many of you out in force promoting local and your own arts and crafts, and also to get to taste some of your yummy homemade edible efforts too.
Well the snow is very much upon us at the moment, so much the same as my last blog, do be mindful of heavy falls sitting on top of hedges and trees, making them vulnerable to breakages by adding extra weight and stress to branches. Just gently removing some of the white stuff with a broom can greatly help reduce damage.
Don’t forget to feed the birds in your garden and crack the ice on bird baths to keep them going through these cold months. Keeping our feathered friends interested in your garden will pay dividends later on as the weather warms up and they gaily chomp up all the ‘nasties’ that we don’t want spoiling our plants and produce.
In this blog, I’ve decided to cheer you all up on such dull, dark days with some interesting facts and pointers on growing tasty and medicinal herbs! I was lucky enough to attend an inspirational talk by the famous Jekka McVicar last summer and would like to share with you the notes I took during her speach. The good news is, you don’t have to wait for the warmer weather to get going with growing some of your own herbs for daily use now. You just need a warm room, space on a window ledge and a good source of natural light to start growing a number of regular herbs such as basil, coriander, mint etc throughout the year. There are also some good points within the notes that could help you better plan your gardens as we approach the better weather.
I hope you enjoy the information below – I did my best with the spellings of a few of the more bizarre names as Jekka raced through them, so please don’t judge me too harshly if you spot any slight errors!! Enjoy...


Best grown up against a wall. Withstands winter temperatures to -14 degrees. Brilliant for tummy upsets.

This is classified as a herb. Has a natural slow sugar release, so good for stabilising blood sugar – it’s best eaten in the morning.

Leaves have the best nutrients and vitamins. Best used fresh in cooking, works well in mashed potato. Hates being transplanted as has a long tap root – if you do have to move it, cut tap root back before transplanting. Best sown in modules. Plant in partial shade, not directly in sun.

Best ‘pulled up’ so that you can use the roots also for cooking. Leaves, flowers and seeds can all be eaten. Plant in partial shade, not directly in sun. Sea Holly (Eryngium Foetidum), Ketumbar and False Coriander are often grown abroad and eaten –surprisingly, the spiky leaves actually dissolve on your tongue when eaten!

Very medicinal herb and natural hormone. Best made into and drunk as a tea for menopausal symptoms and throat issues. Sage leaves can be used to clean teeth and also make teeth white. Use fresh and cut back after flowering. Small leaf sage is currently being researched to help with Alzheimers.

The best cure for a hangover if made into a tea! Fires up the front part of the brain and is brilliant for improving the memory. Natural antiseptic. A digestive also as breaks down fats, that’s why it is commonly used when cooking lamb.

Heralded as one of the best antiseptic of all – within the oil. Also a fantastic muscle relaxant – cut a bunch, simmer for 7 minutes, strain, then add to a warm bath and soak. Cut back after flowering to stop it going ‘woody’. For an effective cough medicine, mix thyme, hyssop and honey together – tastes bitter but worth the foul taste! Plant Blue Thyme (semi evergreen) around trees as bees love it and it’s good for tree flower pollination. Borage also does the same (annual though, not evergreen). Agastache Foeniculum Thyme is a pretty lavender spiked variety.

Likes to be grown somewhere fairly dry and not in wet soil or a damp bed. Good for helping any illness and should be drunk as a tea. Marjoram is closely linked with some crossover to oregano and is often one and the same when grown on the continent.

Same family as oregano and marjoram. Winter Savory tastes of white pepper, a warming herb. It also stops flatulence and is good for bee stings if crushed and rubbed on to the sting.

Natural antiseptic, oil can be used neat on cuts and abrasions etc. Effective as a mosquito repellent. Can be used in cooking (pick whole flower heads and whilst fresh and dry, layer in a jar with sugar, place on a windowsill and shake often – sift when it looks ready, particularly good used in meringue recipes). Cut back after flowering, don’t leave as weather can split the shrub. Cut back hard to just above ground level – use sheep shears, apparently they are the most effective!

Don’t plant different varieties close together as when the roots touch, they all end up tasting the same over time. Buddleia Mint is good for attracting beneficial hoverflies. Cut all mint back 3-4 times a year. If you have potted mint, it’s essential to re-pot once a year after sawing in half the original plant otherwise it will die. Mint is closely related to basil.

Basil is known as the ‘King of Herbs’. Great for cooking. Works well with tomatoes and pasta. A natural antiseptic and fly repellent. Add leaves to bath. Underplant tomatoes to keep flies away.

Tastes of aniseed. Helps to digest fatty foods so is often used in a cream based sauce. Also good for sleep disorders.

Plant in partial shade. Sow in Feb / Mar and it will last into July. Sow in Sep / Oct and it will last all winter.

Can be pickled. Good for obesity *(my own thoughts on this are ‘not if eaten with dognuts or Mars Bars!!!)

Great for indigestion. Seeds can be chewed or made into a tea. Add to bread. Also a diuretic.

Best used with cucumber and courgettes, use leaf and seed. Also a natural antispasmodic.

Only eat the seeds. These can be eaten green (stronger flavour) or brown (milder flavour).

Make a tasty soup out of the leaves or make tea, it is said that borage tea gives you courage. Place the pretty blue flowers in ice cube trays, add water and freeze – they look good in drinks.

Lowers blood pressure. Crush 1 clove into hot water, stand for 2 days, strain and place in a spray bottle for use on seedlings – it keeps slugs and aphids off and whilst it doesn’t kill them, it deters them from munching. All alliums / chives are related family and all flowers can be eaten.

Flowers are edible, use in salads and cooking. Make calendula cream to apply as a healing cream.

Very pretty small blue flowers, grows very tall. Naturally bitter taste. Used in Camp Coffee which is made from the roots.

Oversized thistle type plant. Allow plenty of space. Grows up to 2m tall. Lots are grown in Italy.

Add to salads – delicious served with bacon. Flowers can be fried in butter. Good detoxifier.

Hack it back and use young new shoots in cooking and seeds in soups and casseroles.

Native UK herb that was taken over to India. Looks like French Parsley. Use seed in salt.

Very invasive herb – best grown in an old dustbin. Good for circulation and arthritis.

AUK native wild herb. Used as the main ingredient for gin. It used to grow wild along the river bank of the Thames. Can also eat the young leaves in salads and make a delicious jam and sorbet out of young stems.

This herb is sure to be used in future times owing to the fact that it can be grown where wheat and corn cannot, it can be made into flour. Makes good unleaven bread. Related to Fat Hen

Can be quite invasive. Grows tall, up to 2m. Pretty leaves and white flowers. Seeds can be used in cooking and for cleaning pewter.

Likes to be grown in partial shade. Tastes of apples.

Flowers can be eaten or frozen into ice cubes.

Laurus Nobilis best to grow. Check you’re growing an edible variety – you would be able to see all veins in the leaf. Makes a wonderful ice cream as it tastes like white chocolate!

Known as The Herb of Love. Brilliant for making gin with the berries!! Leaves can be used in cooking, they add warm flavours. It does require well drained soil in order to grow well.

Hack back hard. New growth will grow off of old wood. Boil the leaves and use the juice as a laxative.

Likes a dry environment – grow in walls or rocks.

Good to use for coughs. Naturally antiseptic. Effective companion plant as encourages black flies away from other garden goods.

Orange variety breaks down cholesterol. All of it is edible. Part of the mint family.

Harvest by drying. Makes a good tea for insomnia and an really delicious crème brulee!

Leaves can be used in cooking. Flowers are also edible and sweet.

Will usually only grow in a greenhouse as likes a tropical climate. Thrives best being pot bound and kept on the dry side. Use the leaf to make tea and in cooking. Roots only sold in supermarkets here due to export laws! Cut back to 6 inches.

Good for making a relaxing tea, also said to help aid good memory.

Flowers can be eaten. Cuttings can be taken to propagate. Overwinter in greenhouse at a temperature of +5 degrees.

Highly recommended PMT Tea Recipe : Hibiscus, Peppermint, Calendula and Green Tea – apparently it’s a real winner!

Jekka uses Bio Fungus in compost.

Doesn’t use rainwater to water in the greenhouse owing to fungus being present – instead, she uses tap water and citric acid.

Probably best to exterminate all snails found in your garden – Jekka tried collecting them and dumping them a mile from her garden, but after a month, they found their way back (apparently she marked them with Tippex so she could identify them!!)

​​​Happy Herb Growing!

Interesting Fact
If you have troublesome ants in your garden, plant out mint or spearmint – they don’t like the smell apparently, so will move out pretty promptly J
Kingston Lacy – National Trust : http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kingston-lacy/
Worth a day out with the family to see the fantastic snowdrops mid February.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013


Hello ladies,

Just a reminder that our subscription fees are in respect of calendar years so all existing members who joined prior to October 2012 need to re-subscribe for 2013. This year's fee is £33 - your money goes towards our hall rental, speaker fees and helping fund the National Federation. Your subscription entitles you to copies of the WI Life magazine, access to courses at Denman College and means you can attend all of our monthly meetings. Anyone joining since October 2012 has taken advantage of the last 3 months of 2012 being included in their 2013 membership so have nothing to pay until January 2014.

Now we are into our second year, we have to pay half of all subscription fees to the National Federation. This means that we will have less funds for our speakers and other outgoings. In order to keep the finances healthy, we will sometimes ask for an additional small contribtion of around £2 during meetings where we make something we can keep and need to cover the cost of materials. We will obviously continue our fundraising efforts to help boost the bank balance and help ensure that we can afford quality speakers. Fees aren't allowed to go towards funding drinks and refreshments. It would be great if you could either make a small donation at our meetings (we will provide a collection dish on the drinks table), or occassionally bring a bottle of something along with you.

We were over-whelmed by the number of members in our first year, your support and enthusiasm has been very much appreciated. It is great to see the ladies of Frome getting together, learning new skills, trying things they might otherwise not, being sociable and welcoming to ladies who have recently moved to the area. We look forward to your ongoing support and contributions to help us grow our WI in 2013.

See you tomorrow...don't forget your cheque books!


Tuesday, 15 January 2013

January meeting

Happy new year! We hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

Thursday 17th sees our first meeting of 2013. We have Jo Lucksted coming along, she is a local ceramic artist who makes very beautiful things.


Jo will be telling us about her work and talking us through a workshop where we will have the opportunity to have a go at a ceramic project.

If you fancy breaking a post Christmas diet by baking a cake to bring along then that would be fabulous!

Emma will be womanning the subs desk should you wish to visit us for £3 or join up for 2013 for £33.

Hope to see you all there! Xx