Thames Valley Network Events

This page list the events that are offered to our members by our own regional network.

Do you have a relevant piece that could be of interest to our members? If so we can place it here for publication. Please send a message to the Webmaster and we will get back to you asap. 

The Noticeboard is where we do our best to help you keep up with what's going on. It changes fairly frequently, so our advice is to look back regularly to see if there are new things happening that might catch your eye…


Some of the noticeboard items are time sensitive, so if you want to get involved you may need to act quickly. (They will be removed when the expiry date passes.)

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Gilbert & Sullivan - Special Day

The TVN Network are putting on a very special day for G & S enthusiasts in Harwell Village Hall (Oxon) on Wednesday 18th October 2017.

The day is being run by Bernard Lockett who describes himself as a lifelong Gilbert & Sullivan enthusiast. He has written 2 books on the subject and since 2005, has been a trustee of The International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival (now in its 24th year) based in Harrogate. He works with the National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company, which headlines the festival and then tours.

For the past 8 years, Bernard has spoken about G & S to various clubs and societies and has broadcast on BBC Radios 2, 3 and 4 and has appeared on the ‘The Andrew Marr Show’ on BBC1. The programme will be punctuated by excerpts of their works on DVD and CD.



Provisional programme for the day:

09.45 – 10.15 Arrival, Registration, Coffee

10.15 ‐ 10.25 Introductory talk

10.25 – 11.10 Gilbert & Sullivan ‐ historical backgrounds and considerations.

11.10 – 11.30 COFFEE

11.30 – 12.15 An assessment of G & S – what are they – Victorian Museum pieces or theatrical heritage?

12.15 – 1.45 LUNCH

1.45 – 2.45 A review of G & S in the 21st Century, production values and assessment of the worldwide popularity of the works.

2.45 – 3.00 Questions

3.00 – 3.30 TEA and Close




14th June 2017

National Gallery Event

The National Gallery is delighted to be hosting a U3A study day focusing on French Impressionism.  Learn about the techniques and subject matter of Impressionist paintings in the National Gallery collection and discover why these ground-breaking paintings of modern life were so controversial in France during the Belle Époque.

Join National Gallery experts for a day of talks exploring Impressionism in France c.1874-1926, from Monet, Degas and Renoir’s contributions to the first Impressionist exhibition to Monet’s Water Lilies series, painted during the final years of his life.

Be dazzled by the light, colour and spontaneity of Impressionism at a day of talks at The National Gallery

£20.50 (lunches & refreshments not provided)

9th May 2017


10.30am Doors open

11.00am Welcome. Warm up with Louisa Ridgeway and group begins to learn songs

12.45pm Sandwich lunch (included in ticket price)

1.20pm   Group continues working on songs, harmonies and solo lines

2.40pm   Break

2.50pm   Dress rehearsal

3.30pm   Recording of songs

4.00pm   Workshop finishes.

If there are insufficient bookings event will be cancelled and payments returned.



Working with Louisa Ridgeway.

The Ambassador Theatre Group’s West End Creative Learning team has created this one day bespoke event to bring together up to 150 U3A members from across the UK to enjoy the experience of working together with a professional West End Musical Director.

The group will fill the auditorium of one of our West End Theatres with a series of songs from various West End musicals.  You’ll be taken through a series of warm-up exercises , spend time learning songs, working with the MD on vocal qualities, tone and harmonies in preparation for a recording of the pieces before the end of the day, a CD copy of which will be sent to you after the event.

Previous choir experience and the ability to read music is not necessary and the Sing Out is designed for all abilities and all voices.

The Savoy has various staircases without lifts so please wear comfortable footwear.

FAQs What's the refund policy? Should you be unable to attend we cannot refund ticket money unless we are able to offer your place to another U3A member if there is a waiting list. Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event? We will have a list of attendees so do not worry if you do not have your ticket.

New Event From National U3A

We have received notification of this event from the National U3A head office. If you would like to attend the button below will take you to the online booking form.

Events organised by head office fill up very quickly so please book early if you're interested in attending.

18th April 09:00am this event has a waiting list.


STUDY DAY - Extra Date Added!

Glimpses of the Social History of the Thames Valley

The TVN Network is holding this Study Day on Wednesday 17 May 2017. The location is at The River & Rowing Museum, Henley-on-Thames.

See Separate Application Form below.

The intention of the study day is to shed light on different aspects of the lives of people in past centuries, in the towns and villages of the Thames Valley. The panel of speakers are both knowledgeable and enthusiastic. They will open these windows on the landscape of the past for those that attend the day.
If any member is interested in attending then we advise you book your place early. From experience we know that TVN events get filled up pretty quickly.
  • 17th - 20th July TELFORD

  • 14th - 17th August CIRENCESTER

  • 11th - 14th September CIRENCESTER

These events are always well attended so we suggest, if members are interested, that they apply as soon as possible.

National Summer Schools 2017

To find out more about the National Summer Schools Programme in 2017 we have created a link to the booklet that tells members more about what's on offer.

Press the link and it opens the booklet in a separate window or tab, depending how your own internet browser is set up.


National U3A Conference 2016 - Chairman's Report

Three members of your committee attended the National U3A Conference in August 2016. They were David Burbidge (chair), Val Smith (secretary) and Val Darbyshire (membership secretary).

David and the two Val's have written a succinct report on what went on at the conference and it's available for you to read here…


One of the speakers at the conference was Samantha Mauger. (She prefers to be called Sam.)

She is the new CEO of the National U3A. She took over from Lin Jonas in mid-2106.

We think it's nice to put a face to a name. 🙂