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Tuesday June 18 2019

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60 years outdoors

Posted on June 28 2013 at 12:02:44

1953 canoe trip

An outdoor activities group formed in Alvechurch has celebrated its 60th anniversary at the Village Hall.

The initial meeting in 1953 of 16 people – 11 from Alvechurch, three from Blackwell and two from Redditch – formed a group of the YHA. They had an average age of 22 and only one person owned a car.

For more than 20 years they operated within the YHA until, in 1975, they became the independent Arrow Valley Countryside Group. The group still meet most months at Alvechurch Baptist Hall.

Members and ex-members travelled from as far afield as Scotland for the Village Hall event. The hall rang with conversation and laughter as more than 70 people welcomed one another and caught up with old friends.

One of the pioneer members, Ian Hayes, was present on the night.

A magazine was on sale revealing what the group had been up to in the past decade, in addition to a photo display and audio visuals compiled by members.

There was also good food and three or four sessions of live, foot-tapping jazz piano. A good time was had by all and there was some reluctance to leave at the end.

Other special events will follow in the months ahead, including a short and a long walk followed by tea and cakes at Church Lench Village Hall, and a coach ramble (or tourist day) on Wenlock Edge, centred round Wilderhope Manor.

Anyone interested in joining in any of these events should contact Rob Rhodes on 01527 546708.

Above: Founder members including Fred and Joan Barlow (far right), Malcolm Taylor and Ian Hayes (behind Malcolm) on a 1953 canoe trip.

Below: Sixty years later, current members – including Ian Hayes – gather at Alvechurch Village Hall.

60th anniversary celebrations

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