At the August meeting, Chairman Andrew Banfield thanked members for their support at the Coulsdon Fair and recognised that several members were also supporting other organisations there. A thank you also for the funds raised on the Barge Trip (reported on in the last newsletter). Tony Simpson was welcomed back with thanks to the many members who had enquired after him. The Chairman also welcomed Phil Munson whose wife is feeling much better. Phil is looking for speakers from club members for 2017. Andrew has had a nice response from the chairman of the Coulsdon Rotary which has closed. Maybe we will get some interest from their ex members. Considering our age profile, we need to consider options (current membership 44) – please forward ideas to the Committee.
There were 36 members present in August plus our guest speaker and the Chairman’s Charity collection raised £38.65. Martin Bergs asked if members would like to support his wife Maija’s charity – Progressive Supranuclear Palsy. Maija suffers from PSP. See back page for full article.
Companion member Norman Cockcroft is poorly. Please advise news of members to almoner, email@example.com, tel: 01737 202243. Attendance: please notify Andrew Kellard, tel: 01737 554055.
Norman Cockcroft had a fall earlier this year and had a hip operation. There were complications perhaps due to his Parkinson’s. He has returned to hospital for two further attempts to get it right. Norman is mainly bedridden and very frail. He is now in Hill House Nursing Home, 48-50 Park Road, Kenley CR8 5AR, Tel: 020 8660 9336. Norman’s wife Janice is also in Hill House. If you wish to visit, please contact the Home first.
Outings and Events
Ladies Lunch: 15th October at Coulsdon Manor – see editorial.
Annual Quiz: 19th November at Old Coulsdon Centre for the Retired – £4 per head. Tea/coffee, soft drinks, biscuits provided – please bring own alcoholic drinks. Prizes to be won! Contact: Dennis Evans.
Mary Moore – Mongolia
Mary, who has visited us twice before, presented a travelogue of her visit to Mongolia. When we were at school, it was called Outer Mongolia to distinguish it from Inner Mongolia, an autonomous region of northern China.
Ulan Bator, the capital, was the central point for excursions, so Mary started with what she saw there. Culture was represented by the Opera House. History by the statue of Khorloogiin Choibalsan, hero of the 1921 revolution, and by the statue of Genghis Khan on horseback outside Parliament. Then religion provided
the Gondan Monastery with a huge statue of Buddha. Here and at other temples there were prayer wheels to spin as you pass.
Next, into the country to taste the nomadic life. Everything was carried by dzo (a cross between a yak and domestic cattle) and cart and accommodation was the Mongolian tent, a ger. Mary showed us how it was erected with trellis and fabric, held together with rope and padded with camel hair. Activities included rafting and riding. The Mongolian saddle has a piece in front and behind which are useful to hang on to.
Then back to Ulan Bator for the theatre and a musical performance. A trip to the ancient city of Karakorum to see the 1586 Erdene Zuu Monastery and the stone statue of a turtle which protects the city. No trip to Mongolia can be complete without the Gobi Desert, riding a Bactrian (two humps) camel, trekking along a gorge and visiting the Flaming Cliffs. National drink – Airag, made from fermented mares milk.
Editorial – Ian Payne
The annual Ladies Lunch on 15th October at Coulsdon Manor is our flagship event. If you haven’t already done so, please contact Jim immediately to book your place. If you’ve lost your reservation form, Jim has spares and remember you can bring as many guests as you wish. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, tel: 01737 555974.
Three months having passed since the unsuccessful judicial review on the Lion Green Road and Cane Hill developments and Lion Green Road Car Park was duly closed. Parking will again be provided when the supermarket development is complete, but there will be fewer spaces and it won’t be 24 hours. I found it somewhat naïve when, on closure, the residents associations petitioned for the Council to keep the car park open – they were effectively saying “Will you please change the planning consent that you have already given for your own development on your own site?” Despite a change in administration, the answer was “No”. So far, being holiday time, I’ve still been able to park, after a couple of circuits, despite a near miss with a car who thought the middle of the round-a-bout was a suitable place to wait in the queue for the Aldi car park. Let’s see what happens when everybody’s back at work.
Jim Mulvey recently passed on an email that is doing the rounds concerning pensions. The key message was “The only thing wrong with the government’s calculation of available pension is that they forgot to figure in all the people who died before they ever collected old age pension. Where did all that money go? Remember, not only did you and I contribute to our pension, our employer did, too.” Some dubious maths followed suggesting we should all have an additional £1976 per month.
I immediately responded “We have not contributed enough to meet our own personal pension. We paid less for our pension because the government knew some people were going to die. It’s called the actuarial principle. So there’s no spare money as the writer of the email suggests.” Actually this only applies to funded schemes like the civil service. Our state pension isn’t funded at all but is financed on a ‘pay as you go’ basis. This means that there’s no long term money put aside and therefore no link between what one has personally paid in and what one will eventually take out. Each year what is paid in is used to make payments to current pensioners. The only forward looking is to estimate future longevity and thereby population size and to estimate the contributions that will be required to meet future pensions. When we die we cease to be a burden on current expenditure and on average, of course, we die as predicted by the actuarial mortality tables.
Progressive Supranuclear Palsy and the Female Bogle
A few years ago (2008/2009) Martin Bergs gave a talk to our club about the Bogles of Stonehenge. A Bogle is a pin man with a Beatle hair style banging his head with a hammer with one hand and holding the cash collection box in the other. The Bogle is the symbol for Manchester University’s ‘Rag Week’. Like Martin, I (your editor) was also at Manchester during the 60s and well remember taking part in the famous Bogle Stroll. This was an overnight fund-raising walk from Lancaster back to Manchester. But back to Martin’s story.
Martin was part of a group that, as part of a rag week stunt, organised the invasion of Stonehenge by sixteen 6ft high male Bogles on a February night in 1966. [There was no barrier at Stonehenge then.] The story was covered in the Times, Telegraph and Guardian but contrary to intention, not linked back to Manchester. The custodian ordered the Bogles to be consumed by fire but a local historian rescued two Bogles on the roof of his car. When he died his widow contacted Salisbury museum. They in turn contacted archaeologist Julian Richards (as seen on TV) and with the help of the Guardian solved a 42 year mystery. 17 Feb 2016 is the 50th anniversary of those Stonehenge Bogles.
Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) is an uncommon brain disorder that causes serious problems with walking, balance and eye movements. The disorder results from deterioration of cells in areas of your brain that control body movement and thinking.
To represent the PSP Association, a female bogle was invented and Martin’s wife, Maija a PSP sufferer, is writing a diary of Bonnie Bogle’s adventures on facebook (www.facebook.com/bonnieboglepsp). As the date approaches Bonnie Bogle will meet a male Bogle fall in love and get married at the stones. The idea is to use this to raise awareness of PSP and raise funds for research. If you would like to donate, please visit the website www.pspassociation.org.uk/support-us/donate or phone 0300 0110 122.