Learning is not just child’s play...age is no barrier for U3A

Theyre learning...honest! The wine appreciation group is one of more than 80 run by the U3A in Bridlington
Theyre learning...honest! The wine appreciation group is one of more than 80 run by the U3A in Bridlington

You’re never too old to learn, and hundreds of people are proving that in Bridlington on a weekly basis.

It’s almost an A to Z of subjects at the U3A in Bridlington, with classes ranging from art to yoga, taking in French, photography, jazz and motorbikes.

The Silver Dream bikers travelled on motorbikes to Ghent

The Silver Dream bikers travelled on motorbikes to Ghent

The University of the Third Age (U3A) is a national organisation which is all about providing learning in later life, and in Bridlington it is thriving.

Chairman Lynne Stanley said: “The organisation has been around for more than nine years now and I have been chairman for two years.

“We have about 85 different groups, so it is a massive organisation for the town.

“We also have monthly meetings with a speaker, which usually get between 250 and 300 people, and there were 360 people at our Christmas concert. Or you can join just for one specific group.”

Tap dancing is one of the options offered by the U3A

Tap dancing is one of the options offered by the U3A

The only criteria for signing up is that you must no longer be in full-time employment, although Lynne says everyone is welcome regardless of age.

She said: “It’s fantastic for older people who have moved here, or retired here, and maybe don’t know many people in Bridlington.

“Our motto is ‘live, laugh and learn’. We are all learning.

“We go on holidays, go on trips, for pub lunches - anything anybody wants to do, we will try to set it up.”

Formed in 2008, by its first anniversary, the Bridlington group had already attracted 300 members and was running around 40 different groups.

It soon grew out of its original home, at Emmanuel Church in Cardigan Road, and moved to Bridlington Spa for its main monthly meetings.

Groups are held in members’ homes as well as in more specialist venues.

Its mission statement is ‘coming together in friendship to find joy and renewal in recreation,learning and teaching, through a vibrant, effective and inclusive local U3A supported by a community of dedicated volunteers’.

The charity is affiliated to the Third Age Trust, one of 1,000 U3As in the country and a member of an international organisation of similar charities.

So, if you want to get involved, here is a list of the groups and when they meet.

Monday (morning): Jazz Small Group, Knitting and Crochet, Music Appreciation, Short Walks, Tap Dancing, Tenpin Bowling

(Afternoon): Art Acrylics, A Writers’ Group, Ballroom Dancing, Intermediate, Canasta, Digital Photography, Psychology, Singing for Fun:, The Entertainers, Sociology, Wine Appreciation

Tuesday (morning): Intermediate French, Conversation, Knitting and Crochet, Orchestra (any, instrument welcome), Tai Chi, Trim Intentions

(Afternoon): Acoustic Guitar, Canasta, Canasta for Beginners, Hand-Held Technology, Jazz Ensemble, Let’s Make a Band, Music: Learn to Play, Roots and Shoots, Garden Group, Science and Technology, Writing Memories, Yoga

Wednesday (morning): Art Acrylics, Art: Mixed Media, All Abilities, Golf Improvers, Medium Walks, Short Walks, Spanish Beginners, Spanish Intermediate, Ukelele,

(Afternoon): Advanced Spanish, Arts Appreciation, Ballroom Dancing Advanced, Bridge, Calligraphy, French Refresher, Government and Politics, Progressive Whist, Rummikub plus Games

Thursday (morning): Art Watercolours, Crown Green Bowling, Discussion Group, Family History, French Conversation Advanced

(Afternoon): Canasta, Ballroom Dancing for Absolute Beginners, Book Group, Computing for, Beginners (2), Drama, Getting Going in Italian, Getting Started in Italian, Literary Studies, Scrabble, Table Tennis, The Choir Chantons, Wine Appreciation

Friday (morning): A Little More German, Art: Portrait Painting, Art: Watercolours, Poetry Appreciation, Wolds Wheelers, Yoga,

(Afternoon): Computing for Beginners, Short Mat Bowling, Latin, Outdoor Bowls, Recorder Group, Tatting

Variable: Allotments, Continental Travel, Fishing, Geology, Hearing Loss, Jazz Appreciation, Long Walks, Pub Lunches, Quiz, Bridlington U3A Bikers, Silver Dream Bikers, Theatre, Trips