Powys Village Women’s Institute celebrates 100 years of friendship

Abermule WI celebrates its very special milestone of inspiring women in the village community for a century.

100 years after the first meeting held at Memorial Hall on February 27, 1922 to “consider the advisability of forming a branch of the Women’s Institute at Abermule”, the WI is “still there, still going, still doing all kinds of things,” Secretary Eira Humphreys said.

“It’s really wonderful. Especially after Covid and getting back together. It’s that friendship and seeing people and chatting and hanging out.”

Thirty-two members, including the first WI President, Mrs. Whitley Owen, attended the first demonstration of ‘raffia basket weaving’ given by Miss Riddell on March 9, 1922.

“I know that with WI people think of jam and Jerusalem. Yes, some people cook, others know how to sew. Most of us go there because we want to be social. We still do all the sporting stuff, darts, dominoes and croquet, and you can mingle with other WIs from other areas as well.

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“It’s fun. It’s not about boring things, but at the same time you learn something new at some point. You meet different people, learn something new and you have the opportunity to do everything in the county, whether it’s going out. It can be whatever you want it to be. You can as much or as little as you want.”

To mark the branch’s special centennial year, members gathered for a celebratory meal at Abermule on the eve of WI’s birthday. Members were each presented with hand-crocheted sunflowers by President Cathie Poynton, which has become a symbol of WI.

The celebrations continue this summer when past and present members gather for afternoon tea at the Abermule Community Center on Sunday, August 7, from 2-5 p.m.

“Anyone who has been through Abermule WI can come see our scrapbooks going back over the decades, and come have a cup of tea and a chat,” Eira added.

For more information and to book afternoon tea, please contact Eira on 01686 630331 or email [email protected]

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