Thursday, 24 November 2016

Remember, remember the cake of November

What a splendid meeting November was! First of all a big congratulations to our new President, Grace, on her inaugural meeting in charge. I know you’ll all join me in three big cheers and we know its going to be a blinding year with you at the helm. All the new committee members did a brilliant job organizing the meeting and settling into their roles too, along with the seasons ladies running things smoothly as usual.

Next up a big thank you to our meeting guest, Meryl White, who knows everything there is to know about this history of afternoon tea. We were delighted with all kinds of stories and anecdotes about tea and cake from the Boston tea party to the correct way to put milk in your tea. 

Meryl White and Grace

It was also interesting to hear that Victorian ladies would eat cake with gloves on, which caused much rumbling of these questions…..wouldn’t you get crumbs on your gloves? and, wouldn’t you get fluff on your cake? 

In fact, she is so obsessed with tea and cake that she counted that we’d mentioned cake 37 times before she even stood up for her talk! 

Her stunning array of cakes was enjoyed by everyone too along the now infamous Di’s SHWI Pie which we’re delighted to announce is featured in the Sheffield Cook Book (great idea for a Christmas present hint hint!). 

Di, Anna, Bex and Ruth were very excited about the new Sheffield cookbook
Di's SHWI pie
Everyone had their last chance to join up for the next year so fingers crossed its going to be a great year and we’re looking forward to meeting the fresh faces ready and waiting to join with their fingers over the eventbrite buttons when it opens up soon…..

Jodie Winters
Fundraising and Campaigns Officer

Monday, 21 November 2016

Beer-brewing WI raise money for local charity

South Yorkshire’s largest WI group have teamed up with Abbeydale Brewery to raise over £1000 for a local charity, Light Sheffield. 

Grace (right) receives a cheque from Sue Morton (left)
Seven Hills WI were invited by the Sheffield brewery to create their own beer called Not Just Jam, a lemon and earl grey tea flavoured pale ale.

The beer was the signature ale at Abbeydale’s SunFest beer festival at the Rising Sun pub in Fulwood this July and was also sold in pubs across Sheffield and the UK.

Abbeydale have donated 10p from every pint to Seven Hills WI’s charity of the year. Combined with donations from the festival, the total raised was £1277.

Grace Escott-Tebbutt, President of Seven Hills WI, received a cheque from Director of Abbeydale Brewery, Sue Morton, at last Thursday’s meeting (Thursday 17 November 2016). 

Grace said: “We had so much fun brewing the beer and zesting 100 lemons by hand for the special recipe. I’m so pleased we could raise so much money for Light Sheffield and we’re very grateful to Abbeydale Brewery for the opportunity and their generosity.”

Sue Morton, Director of Abbeydale Brewery, said: “We’re delighted the beer was a success - it was definitely one of my favourite ales we’ve brewed this year. It’s fantastic we could help raise so much money for a worthwhile cause.”

All the money raised will go to Light Sheffield, a local charity run providing support across Sheffield to families affected by perinatal mental health illnesses, including post natal depression and anxiety. Members of Seven Hills WI voted to support Light Sheffield as their charity for 2016.

To read more about our beer, read Kirsty's blog

Monday, 7 November 2016

All Hallows' Eve and birthday cake

October saw the 7th birthday of the birth of our lovely SHWI, but also bought with it some spooky goings on…

The meeting kicked off with a final address from our long-serving Vice President, Jen Marsden-Lambert who is one of the founders of SHWI and has decided to step down and take a break from committee responsibilities. Jen received much love and a bottle of Japanese whiskey to enjoy in her new relaxed role as SHWI member!

To celebrate another year of this wonderful girl gang, our member Nicky Campbell had baked the most incredible SHWI fist cake, which Jen sliced ceremoniously before it was demolished by ravenous members. White chocolate buttercream icing? Yes please! 

Nicky with her delicious cake

Founding member Jen cuts our birthday cake
It being the month of October and All Hallows Eve being one of the most fun times of year (following closely behind Christmas and Great British Bake Off months) members had come dressed in their best spooky head wear for a creepy competition. There were sparkly witches, Brexit themed horror crowns, crocheted pumpkin patches, skeleton ladies and a pumpkin tea cosy worn as a hat….ARRRRRGH!

Finally, our terrifying troop of ladies were seated to enjoy our speaker for the night – Jo Johnson-Smith who entertained us with tales of Sheffield past. We cringed at the stories of cannibalistic paupers reminiscent of Sweeney Todd and shuddered at the tale of the black dog, who haunts people on the urban streets at night. The legend of the naughty thug, who runs through town, knocking people into the road sent a shiver down the collective spine. One thing we learnt? Sheffield’s ghoulish history is more petrifying than we imagined……

Jen awards Mary with her spooky prize
And so at the end of the meeting, Jo kindly judged the haunted headwear of our members and ruled that Mary Beckinsale’s disembodied hand veil was the ultimate winner of our Halloween hat-off.

Happy birthday SHWI! Here’s to many more! 

Grace Escott-Tebbutt