In August 2012 I phoned Dorset County WI office to find out about the Blandford WI. What I found was the Blandford WI had been suspended some 18 months previously. I was then asked, "Would you like to re-open it?" Long pause...."Ok." And so, with the invaluable help from County, in particular, Gill Samways and other local WI groups I visited, began the journey to re-establish the Blandford WI. After numerous phone calls, emails and letters the speakers' list for the year was done, the venues booked, refreshments organised, Mayor booked, local press attending, many hours hand making posters and then delivering them throughout the town, telling as many women as I could about the re-establishment of the Blandford WI on Friday 11th January 2013....then it snowed! "The most widespread and prolonged snowfall in the UK since the Big Freeze of Nov and Dec 2010." (Met Office) February 8th 2013 became the launch date and our first meeting. We were still supported by County WI, local WI groups, Blandford Mayor Councillor Sara Loch, Nicci Brown for the local press and, of course, local women who attended and joined. We continue to generate stronger and stronger links; we've supported the local foodbank, the charity Mosaic, the 1914-18 group and participated in the wreath laying for Remembrance Sunday. We had a very elegant High-Tea and roses planted in the Woodhouse Gardens for the W.I's Centenary celebration and invited the people who had supported us over the last three years. The group is what you make of it.
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead (anthropologist)
Blandford Evening WI President