These are the speakers from the Open Meetings held in the Community Centre in session 16-17.



In September David McLean gave us a talk about the slave (Rev.) James Pennington.


On October 12th Louis Golightley gave a talk entitled: Shale Gas and Oil Fracking in the UK



East Berwickshire U3A's November Open Meeting was well attended. Lorna Brunt used illustrations, case studies and samples to deliver a very interesting talk on Medicinal Plants. She began by drawing attention to some of the well known commercially produced products available and explained that they contained very little of the 'natural product' they promoted. She then went on to describe the course she had recently completed at Newcastle University and explained the health benefits of a variety of plants.


Our December 2016 Open Meeting was very well attended to hear Ian Whittaker, a long time member of East Berwickshire U3A, deliver his talk. The theme was 'Scottish Shipwrecks' or 'when a hobby gets out of hand'! He used a wide range of resources, including photographs, video and historical resources to illustrate his talk.

He began by explaining how his interest in diving was fueled many years ago and how his love of the under sea world sustained his interest. He then went on to describe and illustrate some of the wrecks around our coast that he had investigated. He described the documentary sources that he had used to find out about the many ships that had been lost around the Scottish coast and how the improvements in computer technology had enabled him to collate his research and publish it in the form of a book.



East Berwickshire U3A's first Open Meeting of 2017 was very well attended. Emily Iles and her assistant, used models, illustrations and case studies to deliver a very informative talk on the work of the Tweed Forum.

The Tweed Forum was formed in 1991 "to promote the sustainable use of the whole of the Tweed catchment area, through holistic and integrated management and planning".  It works, in close partnership with its members, to protect, enhance and restore the rich natural, built and cultural heritage of the River Tweed and its tributaries and works closely with landowners and the local community so that everyone can contribute ideas and follow the project's progress.
Emily joined the Tweed Forum in May 2015 and is head of the Tweed Invasives
Project, which involves the large scale removal of targeted, invasive, non-native plant species, such as giant hogweed and Japanese knot weed, along 12500sqkm of water courses in the Tweed catchment area.

Emily is also involved in the Eddleston Project. The main aims of the Project are to investigate the possibility of reducing the risk of flooding to the communities of Eddleston and Peebles by restoring some of the original natural features of the catchment; they work with landowners and communities in the Eddleston valley to maximise the benefits they would gain from such work, while maintaining the profitability of local farms; and improve the river habitat for wildlife and fisheries. In her talk she described some of the work, such as re-meandering of the river and reforestation, which is now taking place throughout the Eddleston catchment, as part of the overall plan to restore the river and valley.  Models were used to show how changes in land management and the realignment of river courses can reduce flood risk for downstream communities.