PRESIDENT Audrey Hirst’s last pleasant duty at the recent AGM of Soroptimist International Barry and District was to present long service certificates.

One for 45 years to Ann James, who was the first new member of the club after it was founded in 1968; the other to Jackie Memory who has been a club member for 25 years. President Audrey then thanked the club for the 110 per cent support she had received from officers and members. She compared the club to a family that had shared in each other’s joys and sorrows. Sadly the club had lost two members during her year, Elizabeth Ireland and Dr Eileen McGill, both founder members. She reflected on how much she had enjoyed her term as president and was delighted that the club had fulfilled it fund raising targets for various local, national and international charities. She was particularly proud that her chosen charity, the Eczema Society, had included a feature on her project in the Society Magazine.

Incoming president Jeni Gower-Jones thanked president Audrey for sharing her love of life, food and wine in a variety of different, delightful social occasions and had been a true and joyful ambassadress for the club. President Jeni started her inaugural address with the Maori saying “Ma I muri ki mua” Our journey is……….From the past forward.

She said our past as a club began with our founder members, some of whom were present tonight, and she thanked those members for their continued endeavours and remembered the commitments of those no longer with us.

For the present she thanked club members for their good wishes and support as she begins her year. Her nominated charity will be Cardiff Institute for the Blind which is a region wide charity supporting people with varying degrees of sight loss and consequent functional impairment to lead independent lives.

President Jeni lives in Penarth with her husband, Chris. They have two children, Adam who lives in Australia and Zoe who lives in New Zealand.

To find out more about Soroptimist International Barry and District visit