THE new president of Crosscrake WI, Lesley Singleton, welcomed 66 members and friends to the Christmas party at the Castle Green Hotel, Kendal.

After a delicious meal, everyone enjoyed a progressive domino drive organised by Thomas Nelson. Agnes Waller, Kath Oliphant and Noreen Webster were thanked for organising the event.

THE WI's annual coffee and carols evening raised £621 for the blood bikers. Thanks go to members who helped and contributed to the raffle, hampers and mince pies.

55 MEMBERS attended the first WI meeting of the new year. The speaker for the evening was Paul Littlewood, who gave an interesting presentation on the work of the Woodland Trust. He explained that ancient woodland is unique and irreplaceable. Sadly, much has been lost or damaged since the 1930s.

The president then introduced the new committee members and the main business of the meeting. Members were asked to select one of the five resolutions they would like to go forward to the national annual general meeting. Most members chose the resolution 'a call to increase potential stem cell donor registration'. Meeting the demand for suitable stem cell donors in order to provide potentially life-saving treatment is recognised as a huge challenge.

Items mentioned in correspondence and WI news included the federation spring meeting, The Great Shwaperoo and a centenary celebration concert.

THE reading group met in early January to review 'Music & Silence' by Rose Tremain and are now reading 'The Outrun' by Amy Liptrot.

RUMMIKUB meets on the first Monday of the month. The walking group are going to the Gatebeck area. A trip to see a performance of ‘Cabaret’ at the Palace Theatre, Manchester, is arranged for February. Dorothy Howson won the competition and Joyce Crosby won the raffle.

THE next meeting is on Tuesday, February 11, when Alison Webb will talk about the Falkland Islands.