It was with a sense of demonstrable relief that after twenty months since their last face to face business meeting that life is getting back to normal for the Probus Club of Basingstoke. The Club has continued unabated since its foundation in 1979 and it was time for a much-delayed 41st Annual General Meeting. Covid restrictions delayed the AGM from the traditional June until 14th September and it was held at the Test Valley Golf club, the normal venue for Probus monthly meetings.
Because Covid also made it impossible to hold the AGM in June 2020 the Executive Committee had continued in office for a second year. This time there was a change at the top with David Wickens (a retired engineering sales manager) taking over as President from Richard Wood (a retired Chartered engineer).
The other committee members, who range from a nuclear scientist, a solicitor, a small business owner, a civil engineer and two RAF officers have specific responsibilities and were happy to continue in post for another nine months until June 2022. This ensures that their experiences are paramount in successfully returning to normal operations as a social club for retired Professional and Business managers as per the acronym of the name the Probus Club.
Although Probus Clubs now extend throughout the English-speaking world, with most UK towns having one or two Probus Clubs, the organisation was founded in Caterham, Surrey, in 1965 for retired managers who wanted to remain socially active. With no central office each club sets its own rules while following the basic tenet that likeminded men from all branches of society enjoy meeting for lunch with an attendant interesting speaker. Other opportunities exist to include wives for visits to interesting places throughout the year.
Their October meeting will have as its guest of Honour the Worshipful the Mayor of Basingstoke & Deane BC, Cllr Onnalee Cubitt.