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AXMINSTER: Minute’s silence for much-loved member of Phoenix Ladies Club

Thursday, 05 June 2014


MORE than 30 members of Axminster Phoenix Ladies Club stood for a minute's silence in memory of much-loved member Ida Shepherd, who had passed away since their last meeting in April. A number of members attended her funeral at the Methodist Church and a donation in memory of Ida was given to the Hospice. During the meeting, the chairman confirmed that the outing to Powderham Castle on June 25th was fully booked. As on previous occasions, Phoenix members had been invited to the Royal British Legion Women's Section Garden Party on July 11th at the chairman's home. Making a welcome return to the Phoenix Ladies Club recently, Val Sutherland gave an entertaining talk on the topic “Nice Girls Should Never Do...” Based on her years as a professional actress, members learnt that Val had trained at the same Drama School as Julie Walters and that David Threlfall was in the same year. During her time in repertory theatre when she toured the country, she trekked to remote areas to practise monologues in solitude and had to adjust to changing costumes in the wings with the rest of the troupe. Val also appeared in pantomime, cabaret, music hall and on television, in particular in the long-running series “Crossroads”. Members learnt she also became a silver service waitress during slack times and worked as a magician’s assistant when she experienced stage fright for the first time – hardly surprising at the thought of being sawn in half – with a nightly performance in a different location every day. To quote Val “Nice Girls Should Never Do... one night stands!” Two amusing monologues brought the talk to a close. Next meeting is on June 11th at the Uunited Reformed Church Hall at 2.30pm, when the guest speaker, Francis Watson, will talk about “Collecting Mother of Pearl”. Visitors always welcome.

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