Islands’ U3A Group Accepted As Formal Members

University of the Third Age members

Members of the Islands’ University of the Third Age have been celebrating as the organisation has been officially recognised by the national body.

The group, which has been set up by volunteers to share knowledge and skills, and host educational courses, was started in November 2011.

Any Islander aged over 55 or part time workers can join the self-managed educational and leisure club.

Colin Tincknell, the Southwest representative on the U3A national board came over to attend yesterday’s lunchtime meeting at St Mary’s Methodist Hall and handed over the club’s official certificate.

Colin says there’s a formal process that the islands’ group has had to follow, starting with an initial interest group forming, then a steering group being put in place. The group applied for temporary membership of the U3A after their first AGM and yesterday marked their final acceptance by the organisation as full members.

Colin says the islands group is now officially part of a rapidly growing movement, which is adding around 50 clubs each year. They currently have 860 groups enrolled, covering 295,000 members.

And he says he’s delighted that Scilly’s group has made it to the final stages of membership.

Vice chairman Roy Barnes said he knew the U3A would take off but the group has to keep up the current level of activities for their 52 members.

Regular sessions have shared members’ skills in German, French, photography and music appreciation.

Recently, younger islanders were funded for a Jubilee Sailing Trust training trip in London by a U3A subgroup.