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HRH The Princess Royal attended 90th AGM at Cheltenham Race Course

What a spectacle! 1,000 Townswomen came together today to celebrate their 90th anniversary at it’s National AGM in the presence of HRH, The Princess Royal. This special AGM was a mixture of the serious issues TG is known for, such as debating, garnished with a real nod to the past and a look to the future. Many Members came to the AGM in full flapper regalia!

The new National Banner was unveiled by retiring Trustee Jennifer Thorne, it’s designer and creator. The membership then moved to debate the campaign mandate about whether professionals, who are aware of a driver having an impediment that makes them a possible danger to other road users, should have a statutory duty to report them to the DVLA. It was stressed strongly that age alone should not be seen as an impediment. After a lively debate the mandate was passed and TG will now campaign for this.

Her Royal Highness then presented our major awards: Townswoman of the Year was Karen Moore of Sedgley Evening Guild; the ABC award for a Townswoman who goes Above and Beyond the Call of duty within her Community was given to Prue Chadderton of Lincoln Minster Guild; and finally the Chairman’s award was given to our oldest existing Guild, Totnes who have operated continuously for 89 years. The Princess then spoke in depth, encouraging the members as TG move into their tenth decade.

A talk by Victoria Milligan, whose life was turned upside down by an accident in 2013. Members heard her story of recovery from the loss of her husband and a child and from serious injuries to herself and other children moved all who heard it.

The afternoon passed quickly through standard AGM business, a look back at TG campaigning history and the presentation of remaining awards, before members could sit back and enjoy the entertainment by the Southern Belles, a group of members from Surrey, Hampshire and Berkshire who had entertained TG at the Royal Albert Hall for the Millennium. The lively entertainment took TG on a trip down memory lane.

The meeting was drawn to a close as retiring National Chairman, Jenny Rideout passed on the baton to new Chair, former Treasurer, Penny Ryan

Formed in towns after all women achieved the vote (1928), and with its root in the Suffrage Movement, today’s Townswomen carry on this tradition of campaigning and active citizenship mixed with fun, friendship, learning new skills, eating and more. Everything TG does pursues our aim of Making Women’s Lives Better. To find out about joining us visit the-tg.com.


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