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Colin Fletcher

It’s never easy to write these articles for a number of reasons, which can be easily identified. Firstly, there is the question of how to start the article in an interesting way, the equivalent of an Alfred Hitchcock ’McGuffin’. Then of course there is writer’s block, a formidable adversary. And finally, not forgetting what the content should be. The last is a difficult one; it must not duplicate aspects of the Chairman’s article, although there will be an inevitable overlap .

I feel it is fair to say that after the disruption caused by events beyond our control, the Annual Reunion has settled down and is almost mechanical to run, just tick the boxes as we go. ‘Almost’ that is the key word (see the article on the 2023 Reunion). Hopefully that is how it appears to the membership outside of the Committee. Mind you there are some tricky items below:

  • Venue and Menu – Pontlands is proving a popular venue with decent menu choices;
  • President and Guest Speaker – with a diminishing membership this is always a challenge;
  • Theme for the Coaster.

The 2023 Coaster celebrated the role of women in the Marconi Company. It can’t be emphasised enough how important their contribution at most levels in the company has been.

MVA Coaster 2023

  • Winifred Sayer, who participated in the first regular entertainment broadcasts prior to the historic Dame Nellie Melba broadcast;
  • Elizabeth Beeson the daughter of the landlord of the Cock and Bell, who worked with the Eckersley engineers at Writtle;
  • Not forgetting the countless women who worked on the shop floor.

On a final note I wish you all a happy and healthy 2024 and may we meet up once again at the annual Reunion on 20 April 2024 at Pontlands Park.

Coaster Swap
Do you have any missing coasters from past years? Then contact the Secretary for price and availability. We have a healthy stock of coasters for 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023. Would you like a set of 4 or 6 coasters from different years, or perhaps you are looking for gift ideas.