This is the July 2017 Report of the Leicestershire Speakers Club

The outgoing President Anne French shaking hands with John Baron, the new club President.

It was a lovely summer evening when Leicestershire Speakers warmly welcomed John Baron as their President for 2017/18. Once the official business was concluded the programme started with John reading a poem, ‘I Want a Viking Funeral’. After newly arriving, did he want to leave so soon?

Sue Coleman delighted us as she set a scenario whereby she had been given the task of explaining the meaning of beauty to an android. She accomplished this by the use of gestures complimented by wonderful word pictures.

Mark Snow advised a visit to Stockholm’s Vasa Museum to view the magnificent ill-fated Vasa built in 1626 and raised from the preserving brackish water of Stockholm harbour some three hundred years later. Spanish galleons where her design model but there was a lack of understanding the importance of stability. As she embarked on her voyage a gust of wind capsized her in the harbour  – she was too top heavy!

We learned so much about the potato from Margaret Barratt during her speech entitled “Worth more than gold?” One wonders, do we appreciate the value of the potato today?  Do we understand the benefits Europe has derived from it use? The potato originated in Peru and in Mayan times was used as currency therefore was the basis of their economy.  It was revered as a god. Populations in Europe soon realised its nutritional value. The potato did not require good weather to ensure a good crop as opposed to cereals which did.  Consumption of the potato created a healthier population.  The potato was also the cause of great suffering and misery during the Irish potato famine. The Mayans had many different types of potatoes; the Irish had just one variety. By continually planting the same variety the potatoes became diseased with subsequent crop failure.

Leicestershire Speakers welcome anyone who would like to learn the art of speaking in public. Our meetings are supportive, informative and entertaining, helping to turn nervous wrecks into confident speakers. We meet at 7.30pm on the second Wednesday of each month at the Blaby Drop in Centre. For more information, ring Anne Jones on 0116 2772295 or visit our website We can also provide entertainment and talks to other societies and groups.