Bideford

 

Meeting for BusinessEvents 

 

As a result of the fire in our Meeting House at the end of April, we are meeting for the foreseeable future in the community lounge at Ethelwynne Brown Close, Bideford EX39 4RH

Meeting for Worship Time: 10.30 a.m.

Children’s Meeting Times:
Children are always welcome, but it would help if you first ring Betty Allin, the children's co-ordinator, on 01237 451298. Failing that, ring the clerk.

Address: (note we are not currently meeting here)
The Quaker Meeting House

17 Honestone Street
Bideford
EX39 2DJ [View map]

Please note: What is shown on the map as "Providence Row" is, in fact, a car park which is most convenient for the Meeting House. But charges apply, even on Sunday. The Meeting House is right oppposite the entrance to the car park. Honestone Street is one-way, proceeding down the hill from the top of High Street.

E Mail: bideford@quaker.org.uk

 

Clerk: Rob Sharrock


Treasurer: John Ward


Tel: 01237 239753 (Clerk)

 

Bideford Quaker Meeting House during a Quaker Quest outreach event

 

 

Meeting for Business top
takes place on the first Sunday in every month at 12 noon.

 

 

On average, about a dozen people are present at public Quaker Meetings for Worship here.

These last for about an hour, and, as in other Quaker Meetings, the worship is based in a still silence, with few spoken words.

At Bideford, unlike many other Quaker meetings, the hour is followed by a few minutes of "Afterwords" during which anyone present can talk about what might have been in their mind during the meeting, even though they did not feel prompted to speak during the hour's worship. This is a sharing exercise, not a discussion, and can sometimes be inspiring, or heartwarming.

After Meeting, refreshments are served and there is lots of time for chatter and exchange of news.

 

Bideford Quaker publishes a book.  

Bob Wootton, member of Bideford Quaker meeting, has recently published a Kindle book.  

Bob writes, of his book, “My kindle book 'A Common Economic System Architecture for the EU', sub title 'Freedom and Fairness by Design' is now available on Amazon.com.  

“In the book, I call upon the MEPs of the European Parliament to enact in law the the whole system which establishes maximum ratios between the highest and lowest paid employees of three different types of businesses.  

“I also call upon Mario Draghi and the European Central Bank to establish a new banking system that will simplify the book keeping and economic management of all businesses from sole traders to PLCs. The new Banking system will also enable real time monitoring of the actual cash flows of the national economies of the EU. This real time monitoring will be enabled for the boards of directors, sole traders as well as the officials of the Central Banks of the national economies.  

“At present, there is no business in the world that has a statutory duty to have a wage structure that specifies a ratio between the highest and the lowest paid employees. The Wall Street Journal published on May 23rd 1977 an article by Peter F Drucker, a professor of Business and management guru. The article “Is Executive Pay Excessive?” can be found on the website of the Wagemark Foundation of Toronto.  

“In the article he states that an after tax income ratio of should be established. Not that a set rate but a ratio of some level; 8 to 1 is suggested and advocated by the Wagemark Foundation. The article also says that the argument that excessive pay is necessary to attract the best people is a nonsense. Stock options where directors can make millions are tax avoidance measures only.  

“So my “new” idea that there should be a link between the wage rates  of the highest and lowest paid is nearly 40 years old!  

“Just goes to show how out of touch our politicians and bankers are with the scientific and management expertise that has been around for over forty years.”

Bob's book – in Kindle version only - is available from Amazon http://tinyurl.com/pftufsm 

The Bideford Sustainability Group

Back in July, 2009, Bideford Quakers set up a Sustainability Group aimed at promoting sustainable living. The inspiration for this was a visit by one of our members to a Quaker Council for European Affairs conference in Brussels, combined with material from the Living Witness Project (LWP) ( www.livingwitness.org.uk ).

The group decided to start by educating themselves and, among other things, watched a number of documentaries - A Convenient Truth, The Truth about Climate Change (David Attenborough), A Convenient Solution (Greenpeace) and The Age of Stupid.

The LWP were invited to give a one-day workshop for the Meeting, and as a result set about trying to make our meeting house more sustainable. It  set up a “Green Page” in the local free magazine known as the “Bideford Buzz” (now, only available as an online publication) and gave public showings of three of the documentaries. Publicity was achieved by writing personal letters to each local councillor, writing to the local press, and distributing leaflets and putting up posters wherever possible, and there was an audience of 40 at the final film showing, including the Liberal Democrat Candidate for the forthcoming parliamentary elections.

One outcome of this last meeting was the setting up of a new organisation: The Bideford Sustainability Group which has become increasingly active in the town, and is now a strongly flourishing body. (http://bidefordsustain.org/)

This is but one example of the way in which a Quaker initiative can act as a trigger for something much bigger to take off.

Bideford Quakers' Social gatherings

On the first Tuesday of the month, many Bideford Friends get together for "coffee and cakes" at the Meeting House from 10.30 until 12 noon.  This has proved to be a very popular and cheerful occasion.  All associated with the meeting, and their partners, are very welcome.

The Book Group

This well-established group meets monthly, and discusses works of fiction and non-fiction at the house of one member of the meeting.

There is also a "Chat and Make" group which meets for friendly chatter, and for "making" things by knitting, crocheting, or by any other activity which could come under the heading of "making".

More recently, several members of the meeting have beccome involved with Extinction Rebelllion-  as their expression of the Quaker testimony to the environment.

 

To find out what Bideford Quakers will be getting up to next, watch this space!