What a lot has happened since my last posting: we are in the midst of chaos in Westminster with the ousting of another Prime Minister, Liz Truss, who became the shortest serving PM with just 44 days in office. Boris is back from his Caribbean holiday ready to have another go.
HiVitality (formerly NLTSG) celebrated its 30th Anniversary. This included the awarding of the first ever Fellowships of the the charity…to Danny and me.
The most momentous event has to be the death of HM the Queen on the 8th September. Although I have never spoken to the Queen, she did invite me to a garden party at Buckingham Palace in 2007. I was surprised at the strength of my emotions on hearing the sad news…it was no different from the feelings of grief I had at the deaths of members of my own family. It seems that many people shared my sentiments judging by the long waits …some overnight…of those queuing to pay their respects as she lay in state and who lined the streets for her funeral at Westminster Abbey.
The OLGBT Group has kept me busy. We have become Community Health Champions, supporting and promoting NHS health campaigns and messages in person and by online postings on our weekly emails and on our website More recently we have partnered with the Beth Johnson Foundation in Discover Digital. Although this project has official ended with a celebration at the Catalyst Building, Staffordshire University, we hope to continue its core aims in collaboration with the Beth Johnson team.
In a similar fashion, the North Staffs and District Organ Society has kept me on my toes. We gave a concert of organ and piano music in September to a large, enthusiastic audience at Checkley Parish Church. In October, I organised and took part in our Annual Members Concert at Hartshill Parish Church, which also went well. Although this was a much smaller assemblage, it included a number of distinguished organists who, presumably, had come to hear how the organ sounded after its most recent repairs by Jonathan Wallace of Henry Groves & Son Nottingham. On the other hand, perhaps it was the players that were the main attraction.
In the same week as the NSDOS concert, I attended the launch of Fifty Over 50 – Giving people growing older with HIV a voice. The event took place in the House of Lords, hosted by Lord Fowler who I met many years ago at another HIV function in Portcullis House. It was a pleasure and a privilege to be there. Uplifting speeches, stimulating conversations, reunions with old friends, a chance to make new ones and a delicious afternoon tea. Fabulous.
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