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President Peter Barr presided at the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Chesterfield held at the Olde House, Newbold, on Friday 6 October 2017.  




The president welcomed Julie Wheelhouse from Derbyshire Stroke Services, and Robert McGechie, guest of rotarian Andrew Elliott.




Apologies were received from secretary John Hare, past-president John Heath, and regular visitor Frank Clifford.


Toast for Ian Gordon


Wine was provided by past-president Jim Haggarty in celebration of his birthday this week. Members took time to drink a toast to former member, rotarian Ian Gordon, whose funeral members had attended the previous day.


Information Boards


Information boards circulated included:- Details of the 49th Charter Anniversary of the Rotary Club of Clay Cross at Santo’s Higham Farm Hotel on Thursday 15 October 2017, details about the club sponsored Chesterfield Senior Schools Art Exhibition at St Andrews United Reformed Church this weekend of Sat & Sun 7th & 8th October 2017; details of the club’s 95th Charter Anniversary Luncheon at Ringwood Hall Hotel on Sunday 5 November 2017 (12.30pm for 1.00pm) with highly rated guest speaker Lydia Slack with hilarious tales about growing up on a Derbyshire Hill Farm; news of a Charity Quiz Night being organised by the Satellite Club at the Fox & Goose on Thursday 16 November; attendance register; club calendar of duties and events;


District Conference Report


The president gave a short report on the Rotary District 1220 conference held the previous weekend (29 Sept to 2 Oct) at Llandudno. He had led a delegation which included president-elect Barry Thompson, past-president’s Alan Clarke, Mike Cudzich-Madry, Ian Gaunt, and Bryan White.  He reported that it had been an exceptional conference with some high-quality speakers, which included keynote speaker, Chesterfield Grammar School old boy, Geoff Miller.  A positive thinker spoke about the art of being brilliant by ‘living for the day’; there was a talk from ‘Canine Partners’ which innovatively trains dogs to fit in with the needs of disabled people; a talk from Help of Heroes, highlighting the needs of returning injured soldiers from areas of conflict; and public perceptions about Rotary were shared with ideas how clubs need to change and do things differently.  Chesterfield was highlighted as a club that was bucking the trend by setting up a satellite club for younger busy professionals.  Past-president Mike Cudzich-Madry spoke about the need to practice an ‘elevator pitch’ – namely Rotarians being able to sell the key concepts of Rotary to potential members in just a couple of minutes.   The District Showcase Exhibition included a helicopter simulator, which tested the skill of Rotarians, but it seems most crashed.


Derbyshire Stroke Centre


Club members were delighted to welcome Julie Wheelhouse, chief executive of the unique Derbyshire Stroke Centre, based at Holmewood.  President Peter Barr and past-president Alan Clarke had visited the centre, following a talk Julie Wheelhouse had given at a previous meeting, and were impressed by the range of innovative services available to stroke victims.  Julie gave a short update, which included the news that a pre-owned mini-bus had been acquired to help transport more stroke visitors to the centre.  The president presented a cheque for £2,250, which was from the club’s share of the proceeds from the 2017 Ashover Classic Car & Bike Show.


   Julie Wheelhouse from the Derbyshire Stroke Centre receives a cheque from

president Peter Barr (left) and treasurer Alan Clarke (right)


Vocational Service


The president reported that the Chesterfield Senior Schools Art Exhibition is being held at St Andrews United Reformed Church this weekend, Sat and Sun 7th and 8th October.  The official opening is by the Mayor of Chesterfield, Cllr Maureen Davenport, at 10.00am.  He noted that past-president Geoff Mitchell had taken on the co-ordinating role for this year’s event, following the sudden and sad death of rotarian Ian Gordon.  Council recommended that an Ian Gordon Prize be awarded for the art student adjudged to have the ‘best exhibit’ in the exhibition as selected by a nominated ‘art expert’.  Rather than a trophy or shield, it was suggested that a more tangible prize of art products or art voucher be awarded to the winning art student.  This could be presented by the president at the art student’s school at a later date.  Past-president Geoff Mitchell proposed, seconded by past-president Bryan White, that a voucher or art products up to a value of £75 be awarded for the newly instituted ‘Ian Gordon Art Prize for the Best Art Exhibit by a Chesterfield Schools Art Student’.   This was carried unanimously.


Next week


The meeting was brought to a close when the closing toast was proposed by past-president Mike Cudzich-Madry.  The guest speaker at the next club meeting on Friday 13 October 2017 is Rotarian John Miles (Leatherhead) on ‘Global Sight Solutions’. The speaker host is Andrew Elliott and duty rotarian is Rob Wadd.