Posted by on Mar 3, 2022 in Events | 0 comments


24th – Meeting

It seemed strange meeting again after so long a break – and at a new venue – the Royal Chase. Our new meeting venue offers us much more space and so we hope to make good use of this in the future. We continued our Visioning process looking in particular at recruitment of new members. We have a number of ideas of how to do this in the future. Hopefully this will include some sort of high profile event. Meanwhile our current plans for the Cycle Ride and for our Youth Speaks event, to be run in association with local schools, are making good progress. We will also soon be meeting once more to make plans for this year’s Gold Hill Festival.

Kids Out Letter

Dear Shaftesbury Rotarians,
On behalf of us all at KidsOut, I would like to say a huge thank you for the £100 donation, to go towards the Rotary Christmas Toy Box Initiative. This is a wonderful contribution and I would ask you to pass on our sincere thanks to all those involved for their generosity and support.
Christmas is always tough for families in refuge, with this year harder than usual. Most children arrive at refuge with only the clothes on their back, restricted to a single room with their mother and siblings. Mothers struggle to provide basic essentials, let alone toys for their children at Christmas.
The Rotary Christmas Toy Boxes provided 5435 children in Refuge with brand-new toys to support mental health and make the world a little kinder.
“Refuge life can be difficult, especially for families, and the added pressure for parents to ensure their children have presents to open on Christmas morning causes a lot of stress and upset for our mums – especially if finances are tight. However, your toys mean we can provide our amazing families with the opportunity to have a lovely Christmas Day… please know your toys will be put towards making a child smile this Christmas.” – Refuge support worker
KidsOut is the fun and happiness charity and we believe every child deserves to build happy memories. If you would like further details on what we do, please visit our web page
Thank you once again – your support makes a real difference.
Sandra Doherty
Head of Children’s Services


Reminiscing – January 2020

Casino Night – The Sepsis Trust

Shaftesbury Rotary broke out the Black Tie and Ball Gowns for the annual fundraising on behalf of the Sepsis Trust. It has become a tradition to get together for a Casino Evening in the depths of Winter to add a bit of sparkle to our lives. 15 couples attended the evening and pitted their wits against the dealers on Poker, Blackjack and Roulette. Gambling was strictly prohibited, participants were playing with a fixed quality of chips with the aim to have some fun and win one of the 3 magnificent prizes that had been donated.
David, Rob and Emma volunteered to be the dealers and kept the evening moving with some exciting games.
As everyone had generously contributed towards the food and drink it was difficult to get the second session going after the meal, but once started it was almost impossible to stop. In fact, the Poker table started for a 3rd session after the prize giving.
The magnum of Champagne was won by Judith on a single chip on the roulette table which broke the bank – and she said she’d never played the game before!
The second price went to Steve who had been down to his last chip before his luck turned and ended with a credible 2nd place.
It a cliché to say that fun was had by all, but the biggest winner of the night was the Sepsis trust as we raised £350 in donations.
Many thanks to the participants, the cooks who provided such fantastic food and Sadie and Martin who hosted the event.

Our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Here we have an interesting article from the Rotary magazine:
At Rotary, we understand that cultivating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture is essential to realizing our vision of a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change.
We value diversity and celebrate the contributions of people of all backgrounds, across age, ethnicity, race, colour, disability, learning style, religion, faith, socioeconomic status, culture, marital status, languages spoken, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity as well as differences in ideas, thoughts, values, and beliefs.
Recognizing that individuals from certain groups have historically experienced barriers to membership, participation, and leadership, we commit to advancing equity in all aspects of Rotary, including in our community partnerships, so that each person has the necessary access to resources, opportunities, networks, and support to thrive.
We believe that all people hold visible and invisible qualities that inherently make them unique, and we strive to create an inclusive culture where each person knows they are valued and belong.
In line with our value of integrity, we are committed to being honest and transparent about where we are in our DEI journey as an organization, and to continuing to learn and do better.


Posted by on Dec 21, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


5th – Rushmore Golf Club

We met at Rushmore Golf Club for our Christmas lunch celebration with partners and guests. We were sad not to be at The Fleur but it would not have been possible to accommodate our numbers in comfort there, and certainly not in a way that would have been acceptable in a pandemic.
The food was excellent. Rushmore has a new chef. He really did us all proud. Our personal choices of main course and dessert were followed by coffee and some of the best chocolate truffles I have ever tasted!

Bernard – ever the comedian – amused us with some anecdotes, jokes and a game themed around Christmas humour.
There was good company, entertaining conversation and we left happy with the usual seasonal good wishes.

Pictured From the left. David Britton President elect. Tim Cook President. Past President Steve Uden.

13th – Meeting at the Fleur

We met for the last time at La Fleur de Lys. We enjoyed an excellent Christmas meal and as a special treat a dessert. We usually only have two courses. There were some items of business to deal with including donations to charities, and arrangements for events next year.
We then thanked Mary and David of the Fleur for their loyalty and support over the last eighteen years. We made a presentation of gifts to them and gave a gratuity to the staff.
We then spent the rest of the evening enjoying conversation and good company. We left with seasonal wishes to all, but with a feeling of sadness, that we would not be meeting at the Fleur next year.

Farewell from the Fleur

David, Mary & Marc of La Fleur de Lys here in Shaftesbury have very much enjoyed these past 18 years hosting the Shaftesbury Rotary Club, indeed many of the members have become our Friends
over this time.
However due to current personal circumstances & the need on our part as we get older to have a better work-life balance we had to make the very difficult decision that we could not commit to hosting as many Rotary meetings here on Mondays as we have done in the past. Mutually with this in mind, Shaftesbury Rotary Club reluctantly decided it would be better to relocate to a Venue that could accommodate a greater number of Meetings on a Monday evening.
We fully understand this position & whilst it is sad when things come to an end, we fully understand this decision & we extend our warmest best wishes & thanks to all members of Shaftesbury Rotary Club past & present for the times we have shared. We trust we will continue to see each other as Friends & even on the odd occasion as Private Customers here at La Fleur.
With all our Best Wishes for the Future & if you ever need our help or circumstances Change our
door is always open.
Kindest Regards
David, Mary & Marc


Posted by on Dec 7, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


8th – Speaker meeting

We met in the Fleur restaurant and dealt with some immediate items of business, after which we listened to a fascinating talk from Dan Evans regarding the battle of Agincourt. Dan is better known to most of us as the organiser of the music programme at Gold Hill Fair but he is a man of many talents including being a medievalist. His talk was entitled “Myth, Mayhem and Money”.
Myth because much of what we learnt at school and more especially what Shakespeare told us is wrong. Mayhem because the outcome of the battle in large part came down to the confusion of the men at the front of the French army, being trodden into the mud and unable to escape from more enthusiastic knights and soldiers behind trampling on them. Money – well we learnt the real costs or present day values of running such a campaign, or of buying yourself a suit of army and a charger to ride.
The secret was to avoid battle if you could, because you might lose or get killed. Instead you should lay siege to wealthy towns. You could then plunder and rampage and take hostages to be returned in exchange for a hefty ransom.



22nd – Business Meeting

Tonight was a business meeting. We discussed donations and updated on our events for next year including our Cycle event in May, and the Gold Hill Festival. We will be having to change our meeting venue so we discussed plans for this, together with recruitment ideas to attract new members. So! – if you are interested please make contact:

The real value of Rotary

Here we have an interesting article in this month’s Rotary magazine.

ROTARIANS are known the world over for humanitarian service and the good we do in the world to ‘Serve to Change Lives’. But rarely do we talk about the value of the Rotary network, which spans over 200 counties and territories worldwide, itself. That network of over 1.4 million Rotarians and our younger Rotaractors all join together to exchange ideas and take action. The recent events in Afghanistan have evidenced that. We have three Rotary clubs in Afghanistan and are in regular contact with them to ask for the best ways we can help. The connections that drive and strengthen Rotary arealready at work as members network with each other, and our partners, to provide aid to refugees who have fled the country and are resettling elsewhere. For those interested to know more try our Rotary Action Group for Refugees, Forced Displacement and Migration –
We also expect to see many new project proposals for more sustainable long term humanitarian aid.
Thankfully the current situation in Afghanistan has not halted our progress in our efforts to eradicate polio. Just one case of wild polio has been reported this year. As conflict in Afghanistan quickly evolves, we must advocate for the children of Afghanistan and ensure that polio immunisation remains a high priority so that the gains we have made against polio do not diminish. We look forward to working with our polio eradication partners and the Afghan people to completely eradicate polio. In summary, we work with leaders on the ground at the point of need and mobilise a global network to help solve those problems addressing both immediate and longer term needs. As members of this global network we also benefit from lifelong global friendships ourselves too.
“Together we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change, across the globe, inner communities and in ourselves.”
The real value of Rotary is priceless!


Posted by on Nov 2, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


11th – AGM

This was a Business meeting and AGM held at the Fleur. After the usual AGM business we discussed Rotary Youth Speaks which will be held on January 27th. The local schools are very interested and supportive and plan to enter a number of teams between them.
We also discussed our social programme which is shaping up well with a Pizza meal in a local restaurant in October, and hopefully skittles in November. Plans are also in hand for our Christmas festivities.

25th – Meeting

We met in the Fleur restaurant and had the particular satisfaction of inducting Stephen Uden as a member. We will have to take care not to confuse him with Steve Uden who is also a member.
We had some items of urgent business to transact including donations to a local school and to our local Women’s Refuge.
We than had a speaker, namely Paul Slimm one of our own members. Paul was interviewed by Martin Sayers – another member – about his nautical adventure with two friends in which he sailed east from Chichester to pass anticlockwise around Britain. Well not quite all of it because he passed through the Caledonian canal and down to the east of Ireland. He and his sailing companions covered more than 2000 miles over three months and have currently raised some £2.5K for prostate cancer. The figure is still rising and further donations may be made through then follow link to donations. We heard about comical puffins, heavy seas and engine failures as well as the hazards and hardships of life in a small boat – oh and the pleasures too.

Pizza Night

Is life getting back to normal? It certainly felt like it when 18 Rotary members and partners – three sociable tables of six, went to the Ristorante Da Massimo (the Buffalo Inn, Gillingham ) for Pizza and Pasta. For 2 hours the past 18/19 months were all but forgotten as the 20inch Pizza and large bowls of Pasta kept on coming. I did see a number of doggy bags at the end of the evening, a great time had by all, one to be repeated.


October 6th, 2019 – Twinning Meal

Since 2001 the Rotary Clubs of Shaftesbury and Heerlen of The Netherlands have met alternatively, hosting fellow Rotarians in their homes. This year was the turn of Shaftesbury to host their Dutch Guests.
After a night’s rest, the weekend ‘kicked off’ with a trip to The Somerset Cider Brandy Company, where our host Julian Temperley gave us an interesting insight into the history of cider brandy, together with tasting his cider wines, aperitifs and cider brandy.

After generous measures and a very entertaining morning, we then headed up to the Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton to complete the first day.

Sunday was a more relaxing day heading up to Hauser and Wirth in Bruton followed by a trip to Godminster Cheese Shop. The guests and hosts were able to enjoy Sunday afternoon at their leisure.


It was another successful weekend with our Dutch partners, where the bond between Clubs has grown stronger, year by year. This was accentuated by Lucienne Speth, Heerlen’s President when she made a very poignant speech to both clubs at their Dinner on the Sunday Evening. In her speech she highlighted:

“Being the president of our Rotary club Heerlen Land van Rode this year I had 3 C’s as my theme:
1. to Continue the refreshing course our former president John Scheeren had started. He let his sun made the design of our new vane, little flag, which I am going to hand to Winny, your President, and treasurer, who very kindly drove us to the cider brandy company and the Royal National Airforce museum and who, as we discovered worked at the RNAS.
2. to Connect, the theme of our international president Mallony, which we are actually doing at this time, performing the international avenue, one of our 5 Rotary avenues, and building better friendship, the third question of the four-way test.
3. to Care for each other is my third C, being a paediatric rehabilitation physician, it’s my everyday work. But I am worrying about a possible Brexit and its consequences. We heard yesterday form the cider farmer about his export problems and the regulation problems, which would lead to more dependency of the USA.

Let us treasure our Europe with its different countries, cultures, norms and values! Whether Brexit will proceed or not, let us Care for each other and stay Connected and Continue in being partner clubs! Answering the question of Bharti Kher: these things do really matter to my opinion!”
Guests and hosts parted company on the Monday morning as they caught the train and headed to London to catch the Eurostar. We now look forward to next year’s trip to Heerlen.
If you would like to know more about Rotary, or interested in joining then please look at our website and get in contact.


Posted by on Oct 5, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


13th – Speaker Meeting

We met at the Fleur for a speaker meeting with a good turnout from members.
We dealt briefly with preparations for our Golf day later in the week. We also have a social event this weekend – a picnic at Wardour.
We then had a talk from Peter Sale, one of our members, who told us about his time as a publican. He then subsequently went into education and became a deputy head teacher.
We heard about his time as the landlord of a pub in a tough area of Luton. His customers were the roughest of diamonds but were very loyal to their local. We learnt about cleaning your beer lines and how to manage if your dog ate all the sandwiches and then took you prisoner. All this as well as learning what flavour crisps is favoured by mice – Cheese and Onion if you are interested.

17th – Golf Day

The long awaited and much anticipated annual charity golf day took place at Rushmore Golf Club on 17th September. The charities chosen to benefit from this year’s golf day were CRUSE Bereavement Care Dorset and Mosaic. Both charities offer comfort and support to adults and children in bereavement.
After a blank year in 2020 caused by the pandemic a record number of 27 teams entered and were rewarded by clear skies, warm sunshine and a course in tip top condition.
After registration, coffee and a bacon roll in the clubhouse the teams took part in keenly contested bowmaker and yellow ball competitions with nearest the pin prizes on all par 3s and the chance to win a car for a hole in one on the 17th (bad luck to Tom Morrissey who came within a couple of feet with his tee shot!).

Refreshments were supplied on the 6th hole where golfers were challenged (fortunately for the charities for the most part unsuccessfully) to hit the green in one.
At the end of their round golfers enjoyed a meal and liquid refreshment on the clubhouse decking.
Winners of the Bowmaker Competition were Vital Task Ltd comprising Dave Allum, Dave Burton, Steve Reid and Joe Bond. In second place were Deva comprising John Rigby, Jane Homer, Mark Dickson and Garry Rowland and third were Watson Financials whose team was Paul Whiteman, Mark Burton, Martin Watson and Charles Angear.
Vital Task Ltd also won the yellow ball competition and swept the board by also winning the Sponsors Cup.
This year’s event was magnificently supported by local businesses. In addition to sponsors for each hole, Wessex Electricals were again main sponsors, this year with Farnfields who, with its own 2021 Charity Golf Day scheduled for May a victim of the Covid lockdown, brought several teams to the day and staffed the 6th hole challenge.
Shaftesbury Rotary owe a big debt of thanks to Rushmore Golf Club who as well as being very welcoming hosts for the day kindly donated some excellent prizes.
All in all, with sponsorship, entry fees, raffle and the on course challenge, the event raised over £5,000 to be shared equally by the two chosen charities

18th – Wardour Walk

Starting at 5 Wardour Court, Tisbury, SP36QX
We hope you will be able to join us for our Picnic and Walk around Wardour. Start time is 1.30. From Shaftesbury take the Tisbury Road from Semley, just past the Catholic Primary School turn right. In 200 yards arrive at New Wardour Castle, drive up to the metal gate wait for the Gate to open (it’s a bit slow) , turn right and park in the overflow carpark.
Grab your picnic basket and chairs (we have a few but may not be able to cope if we have a big turnout) and walk into the courtyard and find No.5
We are planning to have a leisurely picnic in the back garden (if the weather’s not so good it will be indoors), Unlimited tea and coffee but if you want anything stronger be sure to bring it with you.
Plates cutlery and glasses all provided (more room for grub in the picnic basket)
After lunch for those with the energy a 1 hr stroll down to Old Wardour Castle and back, we are not intending to go into the castle but loop around the site. If you want access you need to prebook with English Heritage. For those incapacitated by too much food or wine, they will be able to crash out and chat in our absence.
Let’s hope for some decent weather.

Green Star = Electric Gate / Red Star = Overflow Carpark / Gold Star = No.5 (of course)


27th – Meeting

President: Welcomed Paul Slimm back safely from his sailing trip, also to a couple from the Rotary Club of Lewes in Sussex, who were visiting Shaftesbury and staying at the Fleur.
Thanks, was also given to Martin and Sadie for the event at their house.

Treasurer: Received letter from the Chairman of the RBL that the Remembrance Parade would take place on Sunday 14 November 2021 and that the cost of the wreath would be £25.00 and suggested the sum of £100.00 should be sent thus donating, all agreed.
The 120-club draw took place.

International: The club had received a thank you letter from ShelterBox and were grateful for our generous donation.
The club was informed that Paul Whiteman had spoken to the schools about the Shoebox appeal, however they are reluctant to participate this year. It was suggested that members might like to fill a box.

Community and Vocational: Genette had attended a Dementia Day, there was a suggestion to give them another donation, however it was decided to ask for someone to come and talk to the club before giving any more money.
Arrangements have been made for Youth Speak at Shaftesbury School in January; however we are still looking for possible judges, several names were suggested include Sir John Stuttard.

Golf Day Update: Richard gave update and said it was a successful day and because it was a combined day with Farnfield they had 27 teams and 26 sponsors. There should be a good profit. The President thanked Richard and Guy together with the helpers on the day.

North Dorset Cycle Ride: Guy said that they had been approached by the Gillingham Wheelers to set up a maintenance check and this might be something that might be required if we wished the event to grow.

Gold Hill Festival: The committee will be having a meeting next month; however, discussion took place about the way forward and it was suggested that it might be worth looking at potential sponsors for the event.

Social Evenings: A team of 6 members and partners are to take part in a quiz night at the Ship on Thursday 30th September against the Gillingham Lions Club.
The next meeting Mon 11th Oct – Rotary Special General Meeting.


Posted by on Sep 5, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


16th – Speaker Meeting, Mark Blackman

On Monday 16th August, Mark Blackman who had previously been Head of Shaftesbury School and now working for Dorset Council, gave us very interesting talk as the ‘Chief Operating Officer’ for the St Mary school site.
The school went into administration in March 2020 and the site was then handed over to the administrators and the whole site had to be sold.
Dorset was spending vast sums of money on transporting children with special needs out of the county to be catered for their individual needs.
Mark prepared a paper for Dorset Council that if the site could be bought for £10.5million then there would be savings made over time.
When the sale was completed and officers from County walked round the site, they could then see the potential for a Special Needs School and a company was formed to manage the site: Dorset Centre of Excellence.
There are extensive facilities with a great music centre, chapel, ballroom, kitchens, dormitories, swimming pool and gym, all set in a 55-acre site which will make a perfect location for catering for children with Special needs and disabilities. In time there will be day students and boarders.
There is also a walled garden which is the size of two football pitches and could be used to teach children to grow vegetables and give them life skills for the future with the possibility of preparing the food and running a café using the kitchen facilities.
There are flats which could be used to teach older children to manage on their own. The house at the front entrance will be turned into office accommodation and can be used by support staff.
Advertisements will be published during Sep-Oct and it is expected that they will require about 300 staff in total.


23rd – Business Meeting

We met at the Fleur for our first face to face business meeting post lockdown. We did however discuss measures we should take to minimise Covid risk due to the current high incidence in our area.
We discussed updates to our website and action we could take to ensure that the photographic record on the site is kept up to date and relevant.
Some of our members will be helping at the forthcoming Sturminster Newton Cheese Fair and we discussed arrangements for this. Clubs in different towns often help one another at fundraising events and the Cheese Fair is great fun to be involved with.
We then discussed a social event which we hope we will have at a members house next month.
We regularly support Shelterbox. This is a charity closely associated with Rotary, which provides disaster victims with a box containing the immediate necessities for survival, such as a tent, tools and a water purifier. In view of the recent disaster in Haiti we agreed a further donation to help replenish their stocks, which are distributed around the world to be ready at short notice. We know that Shelterbox will already be in Haiti with Shelterboxes, perhaps including ones we have ourselves funded with previous donations.
This Rotary year 2021/22, we are planning to run Youthspeaks, a public speaking competitions for young people run in association with local schools. We are pleased to say that with their support and especially that of Shaftesbury School, plans are well advanced. One of our members has been involved with this in the past and having a background in education has relevant expertise.

Shaftesbury & District Dementia Friendly Community Letter

Dear Members,
On behalf of the Steering Group of the Shaftesbury & District Dementia Friendly Community, I would like to acknowledge receipt of the sum of £250, and to thank
you sincerely for it.
We have been formally constituted since November 2019 (and informally running for over a year before that), but up to now we have concentrated on co-ordinating the efforts of other groups and individuals, and providing Dementia Awareness sessions for interested parties (“Dementia Friends”).
To mount a series of singing events ourselves is a new initiative, with which your funding has helped greatly. Our opening session of “Melodies Remembered” will be on 19th August, and we will keep you informed of progress.
Yours faithfully,
John Lewer,

Start Your Rotary Journey

If you’re interested in joining Rotary there are a number of options available. Rotary is flexible, ranging from full membership to project volunteering.

Join an existing club in your area

There are around 1,700 Rotary clubs across Great Britain and Ireland. Often having multiple clubs in one area, giving you more flexibility to find one that suits you.

Form your own Rotary club

Rotary builds from the ground up. So if you’ve got family, friends, colleagues or acquaintances to join you, why not start your own Rotary Club? You can lead the way by facilitating new and vibrant volunteering opportunities in your area. Rotary has a dedicated team of volunteers to help you every step of the way.

Join the Rotary Global Hub

Access all the benefits of a club experience by becoming a member of our direct, online community the Rotary Global Hub. This model of Rotary allows you to connect digitally with like-minded people in location or cause-based hubs where you can join leaders, exchange ideas and take action.

Consider Corporate Membership

Perfect for business! If you and your colleagues want to work closely with your local Rotary club to get involved in the community, you can. Rotary is a great way to put your organisation’s Corporate Social Responsibility ideas into action.

Get in touch and make a difference

We want to make sure your Rotary experience is the best it can be and fits around your lifestyle. We’ll ask you a few questions to understand what you’re looking for, before connecting you with members in your area, where you’ll have chance to try a few clubs to find your best fit.
For more information, see this month’s edition of the Rotary Magazine.


Posted by on Jul 28, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


4th – Gold Hill Festival

After 16 months of lockdown Shaftesbury Rotary Club wanted to give something back to the community. Gold Hill Fair was relaunched as Gold Hill Festival. Under Covid guidelines, the community had the opportunity to experience near normality again.
The weather was a big concern with an unsettled day forecast, but the public were not deterred. They still turned up and were entertained by live bands on stage, Morris Dancers with their traditional dance routines, two steam engines and a life-sized caravan made of Lego.

The site had the look of a festival site with stall holders and caterers spread around the perimeter of the site, giving them a view of the stage, where local bands were given the rare chance of playing together. There were several Morris Dance groups creating the atmosphere of an English Country Fair.
By all accounts the traders and caterers had a very successful day and again enjoyed the opportunity of an outside event. Despite the odd shower the sun did come out on occasion and overall, it was a very successful day.

Shaftesbury Rotary Club would like to thank the main sponsors Western Marquees, together with Rutters Solicitor who paid for the banners and Signrite for providing some free signage. They would also like to thank the Berwick St. John Steam Fair for supplying the steam engines to the event and Blackmore Vale Leisure for bringing the Lego Caravan.

The Club would also like to thank all the volunteers who gave up their time helping, including Shaftesbury Lions Club who manned one of the gates.
This event would not have been able to have taken place, in this format without the support of Shaftesbury Town Council, who have been behind Shaftesbury Rotary Club and provided a grant towards the event.

12th – Zoom Meeting

We met again by Zoom. We had of course hoped that this would have been a face-to-face meeting, back in our usual venue but of course we have to wait a little longer yet.
However, it gave us great pleasure to be able to congratulate David Britton, our Gold Hill Festival chair, on a very successful event. We will have made a small profit to be distributed to various charities, most of which will be local. It was also pleasing to have received almost universally good feedback on the event, from the public and from traders too. This was despite the rain!
Many thanks as always for the public who supported us, to Dan and his music team, Sam and his dancers, our many helpers including the Lions, the Arts Centre for putting on an event on the Saturday and to Shaftesbury Town Council for their support with a Community Grant and the use of Barton Hill.
This was the first meeting under the leadership of our new President, Tim Cook. It was gratifying to be able to look forward to a full programme for the next year, including running school youth competitions and our autumn golf tournament. We also have a social event of our own in two weeks after the relaxation of the Covid rules.
On that note our next full meeting on July 26th should be back at our usual venue in the Fleur restaurant

25th – First Social Event since Opening Up

With lockdown restrictions now fully eased, it was such a relief to be able to meet up as a group together with their partners. On Sunday 25th July at midday Richard and Dawn Shean very kindly offered up their beautiful home for such an occasion, providing victuals to more than satisfy member’s appetites.

The forecast was not good, but what is an English Summer without rain! Luckily though somebody up there was looking after us and it remained dry for the whole afternoon. It was a perfect Garden Party enjoyed by all, which also included a tour of their stunning eco house and gardens with amazing views. Sadly, only eleven members together with their partners attended.
Great party thank you Dawn and Richard, it was what we needed after such a long time. Thank you, Bernard, for organizing the event.


26th – Back to La Fleur de Lys

On the 26th July members were overjoyed, that finally they could forget Zoom and return to a more sociable setting of meeting in person back at La Fleur de Lys. Other than observing some Covid rules, it was like old times, we were treated to an excellent meal by David Shepherd, together with very slick service. The last ‘in person’ meeting took place in March 2019 with Win Harvey President, since that time we have seen Steve Uden take over the role and hold fortnightly meetings on Zoom. Now after 16 months we are finally Zoomed out and back meeting in person with Tim Cook now President. Thank you, Steve for persevering with Zoom.
Hopefully we can continue, with our principle of ‘Service above Self’ in the Fellowship of our friends and fellow club members, which could not quite be replicated on Zoom.
Thank you, David and Mary for letting us return to experiencing your excellent hospitality.

For the Love of Books

Following on from last months look at the Prince Phillip article in the Rotary magazine, we found another very interesting piece discussing the Rotary Books4Home project which has now supplied 70,000 books to children, many of whom previously had no books to read at home. The full article can be found here For the love of books – Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland (


Posted by on Jul 18, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


4th – Assembly at the Coppleridge

It was good to all be able to meet face to face for the first time in over a year. We were of course in the open air or at least in an open-sided Covid-compliant marquee. We had a good opportunity to talk and renew personal acquaintances. It was such a welcome contrast to Zoom!
Club Assembly is our annual meeting just before the start of the new Rotary year on July 1st when the incoming president, Tim Cook, has an opportunity to lay out next year’s programme. The year will start with the revamped Gold Hill Festival on July 4th and will continue with our Golf day on September 17th and our North Dorset Cycle Ride in May 2022.
We will be able to restart our regular twice monthly meetings at the Fleur de Lys from the end of July, alternating between speakers and business. There will be a full social programme and other fundraising events.
We also hope we will be visiting our Dutch twin club in Heerlen in the Netherlands.

28th – Zoom Meeting

Sadly it was back on Zoom for the 28th June Handover Meeting when President Steve Uden, handed over the Presidency to Tim Cook with David Britton President Elect. Tim thanked Steve for his year as President, particularly as it was a difficult year due to lockdown and that all meetings had been conducted by zoom. We await a photo rather than using a screenshot as we were forced last year.

A friend of Rotary


With the death of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in April, aged 99, Rotary lost a true friend. The above image is from this month’s edition of the rotary magazine,  with an interesting article looking back at his life, his decades of public service and connection with Rotary (link below).

HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh: a Friend of Rotary – Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland (

For more notable rotary members, please visit our Current Rotarians page.


Posted by on Jun 10, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


10th – Zoom Meeting

We met on Zoom and made final plans for our North Dorset Cycle Ride. The organising group have mad impressive arrangements and the event is fully subscribed with 480 riders. We are looking forward to a really special day.
We agreed a donation to an Indian Rotary club to help the desperate situation there with Covid. Rotary is an international organisation and links like this can be a very reliable means of being certain that money gets quickly to its intended destination

16th – North Dorset Cycle Ride

Monsoon Showers fail to Dampen Spirits on BV Dairy sponsored North Dorset Cycle Ride
Despite the downpours from near monsoon rain, spirits were high and the 5th North Dorset Cycle Ride, sponsored by BV Dairy went ahead, with a full entry of 480 cyclists. Entry had to be closed weeks before the start!
Due to Covid restrictions, this year’s event took on an entirely new format, with a new location at Castle Hill and entrants having staggered starts. Despite nearly half of the entrants deciding to stay at home, due to the weather, the remaining cyclists braved the elements and took to the road.
BV Dairy the sponsors, played a huge part in getting the event off the line. Not only were they main sponsors, but they entered a team of 9 with the remaining staff coming out in full, to help with the smooth running of the day. Shaftesbury Rotary Club would like to say a huge thank you, to BVDairy, for having the faith in the event going ahead during the pandemic, together with all the help and publicity throughout the process of putting on this event.

Team BV Dairy at the Covid regulated start
With a feed station on Bulbarrow Hill two thirds into the 55mile route, energy food was required and for this Shaftesbury Rotary Club would like to say a big thank you to Tesco’s, who provided bananas and satsumas, to help the cyclists finish the course. In addition to the companies mentioned beforehand, we would like to thank Rob Beale who supplied the toilets at Castle Hill and at Bulbarrow. Travis Perkins who supplied Hi Viz and barriers, Aqua Clean the Covid cleansers, Signrite the signage and last but not least, James Thrift, who battled the elements to take the photographs.
Then there are all the volunteers, friends, and family who take part very year, without them we would not be able to put the event on, so a huge thank you especially this year, despite the weather they stood there, keeping the cyclists’ spirits up by smiling and joking.
Lastly to the dedicated cyclists who turned up to take part in such adverse weather and who’s spirits remained high without one complaint. Thank you.
Sadly, it was not a good day for the caterers The Really Tiny Coffee Company, Dorset Grill and Mister Softee, dues to cyclists not staying behind yet they were really appreciated by Shaftesbury Rotary Club members and those cyclists who wanted to warm up. Hopefully they will support us next year?
Profits from this year’s event will be going to Prostate Cancer and to Local Charities; all funds badly needed after the pandemic.
Please go to our Facebook page North Dorset Cycle Ride and comment if you took part in the day and keep an eye out for next year’s date. If you took part and would like to view and order a few photos then go to-

Going back to Hovis days
More photo’s from the event can be found on our Gallery Page.

24th – Zoom Meeting

We met for what we hope will be our last full Club Zoom meeting. Next month one or both of our two full meetings, will take place out of doors in a marquee subject to Covid regulations. We are certainly looking forward to this.
We were pleased to learn that our bike ride went well despite the atrocious weather and that all riders returned safely. We also learnt that all is going well with plans for Gold Hill Festival on July 4th.
We then continued with our review of our future plans which is now essentially complete subject to ratification at a face-to-face meeting and then the creation of an action plan.


Posted by on May 8, 2021 in Events | 0 comments


12th – Zoom Meeting

This was our AGM

26th – Zoom Meeting

We met again by Zoom for what we hope will be one of our final on-line meetings, before we are once more able to meet face to face. Plans are in hand for this, as soon as we are allowed to do so legally and in safety for all.
We have taken the opportunity of lockdown to prepare ourselves for the future. So we continued our discussions tonight and have almost finalised our plans.

Gold Hill Fair is Coming!



Business Partner Letter

Dear Business Partner,
As we near the end of the current lockdown and begin to see our restrictions relaxed I thought it a good time to update you on how we at Shaftesbury Rotary Club have fared since Christmas and inform you of some of our plans for 2021.
We have been far from idle, meeting every two weeks on zoom and busy volunteering at the Sturminster Newton Covid Vaccination centre. We have also continued to assist those in need of a helping hand in these difficult times and recognised those who have stood out as shining lights in our community by awarding certificates of appreciation.
As I write, we have received the welcome news that Dorset Council has approved our request to proceed with our main fund raising events this year, namely the North Dorset Cycle Ride and Gold Hill Festival.
The North Dorset Cycle Ride takes place on Sunday 16th May 2021 and I am delighted to invite you to attend either as a participant, a course marshal/assistant, or just to come along and enjoy the day with us.
The renamed and relocated Gold Hill Festival will take place on Sunday 4th July 2021 at Barton Hill Recreation Ground and will include Live Music – Shaftesbury’s got Talent – Food and Craft Stalls and all day Family Entertainment, and I am sure it will be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our return to near normality and rekindle our sense of fun and freedom.
The details of all events and club activity are available on our website which I hope you will have a look at as it is being updated and reviewed to be more informative and accessible.
May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support and assure you that your partnership with Shaftesbury Rotary Club continues to create a valuable force for good in our community.
My very best wishes
Steve Uden


21st-24th April 2017 – Heerlen Visit

We met our fifteen Dutch visitors from the train at Gillingham and then welcomed them to our homes.
On the Saturday morning we all met at the band hall car park and travelled by coach to Bristol. We were given a guided tour around the SS Great Britain. Many of our own members had of course seen around the ship before but the guided tour taught us much that we hadn’t known. Our tour of the ship and the museum was followed by a lunch of soup and sandwiches. In the afternoon we travelled by coach to Clifton and looked at the suspension bridge. The afternoon was sunnier and warmer than any of us had expected. Most of our group made their way down from the bridge and back to the centre of town enjoying a visit to the Red Lodge. A few got lost and travelled via a few bars, to meet the rest of the party at the Aqua restaurant for an early evening meal. We then all returned to Shaftesbury by coach.
After a great day out in Bristol, a later Sunday morning morning start was most welcome when we made the visit to Haines motor museum. The highlight of the tour for most including our visitors was to find the cars that you had previously owned, quite a trip down memory lane. Returning to Shaftesbury Win & Fred gave a tour and commentary on the ” Blue Plaques” that adorn many of the Town’s buildings. In the evening we all met at the Fleur restaurant for an enjoyable three course meal with wine. The evening involved many members of the club who hadn’t had the chance to host and was relaxed and rich with friendship.
Finally on the Monday morning we said farewell to our guests and wished them a safe return home from Gillingham restaurant. It had been a very successful twinning weekend.