Guest blog by members of Llandovery WI
Women in the small Carmarthenshire town of Llandovery were amazed to receive a letter from the Duchess of Cornwall agreeing to become a member of their local WI as well as an announcement that she would love to join them for a cup of tea the very next week.
‘I couldn’t believe it! Earlier this year we had suggested that our secretary send a letter to the Duchess of Cornwall and we received a response soon after thanking us for the invitation and saying that she had many such invitations and wanted time to consider it. To be honest, we thought that was a very polite ‘no’. We had no idea!’ said Cath Collins, President of Llandovery WI.
Louisa Huxtable-Thomas, who sent the invitation letter, said ' I was amazed when the letter from the Duchess arrived on my doormat saying that she’d be pleased to join us! I've only been the secretary for a few months and I'm one of the younger members. When I moved to the area, joining the WI really helped me to feel welcome, I love the way that the WI brings us all together, young and old, mothers, doctors, housewives, widows, and teachers. I'm really proud to be a member and I'm in such good company with the Duchess joining us too!'
During a tour of Llandovery’s renovated YMCA building the Duchess spent an hour meeting with community organisations and finished her tour with a cup of tea, freshly made welsh cakes, and in the best traditions of the WI, a Victoria sponge cake. The Duchess enjoyed her cup of tea and had a good chat with nine of the local members about their interest in crafts. The ladies had been for a visit to an Italian Prisoner of War Church the previous evening and shared their enthusiasm for the site and the local residents who gave the tour.
Jeanette Jones, the local vice-president was still thrilled hours after the special visit. ‘She came and sat down next to one of our founder members, Eluned Jones. We had all been nervous to get everything just right. She was so lovely she put us all at ease straight way because she was genuinely interested in our work and our programme of events. It was a real pleasure - of course we’re proud of our town and how we support the community, but most of all we’re a group of friends and we loved chatting and sharing our stories. It was such an honour!'
Llandovery WI meets on the first Monday of every month. More information can be found at http://sites.google.com/site/llandoverywi