Victorian Winding Engine House in Bestwood Country Park. See Notts News for walking event on 27th February

Regional News

Who would have thought that we considered high winds and a power cut during our regional event last February a major issue?

Little did we know what would follow weeks and months later! Hopefully we will be nearing the end of this pandemic soon and will emerge as a cleaner and more caring nation. It has been lovely keeping in touch with some of you via email, phone and our Facebook group and especially nice to see those who have ventured out on one of my socially distanced walks. But I'm really ready to interact in person now before we forget how to be sociable!

As ever, please do check with the host before attending any advertised events as the rules are constantly changing.

Hopefully the vaccine will help, but we may still need to restrict numbers or pre-book venues in order to go out. Myself or your Local Officer would absolutely love to hear from you with suggestions for events we can do post pandemic.

What are you interested in Walks? Talks? Dining out? Visits to tourist attractions? Treasure hunts? Geocaching? Golf? Boardgames? Bowling? Please let us know!

Maxine Bates

Regional Officer


Many people came out of 2020 with a set of new interests - hobbies found during a period of unaccustomed and enforced leisure time. If you have resolved this year to take those hobbies more seriously, you might want to take a look at page 7 where we have featured just four of the many Special Interest Groups (SIGS). These are groups dedicated to their own special topics and you will find many people with the same passions and interests as you.

Take a look at the main website for the lists of SIGS, and if you can't find one for whatever you are interested in, then maybe you could start one!

Hopefully you are all making plans for the rest of this year - according to the East Mids Facebook group chat, most of you are looking forward to meeting up with friends and family and 'getting out of the house' is high on everyone's wish list. Like Maxine, I'm looking forward to a civilised Afternoon Tea, served by someone without a mask - seeking small pleasures!

As usual, please remember to update your profile on the main website at Once you've added your email address you can be sure you will never miss any important news or announcements. Well I hope 2021 finds you all well - keep safe everyone and let's embrace the opportunities of the new year.

Carole Pollard

Events and Meetings

In the current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 coronavirus, the expectation is that all non-online events listed here are susceptible to being cancelled, if not already marked as such. If you intend participating in any event listed here, please contact the event organiser beforehand to confirm that the event is still on.
photo of Susan Graves

Derby Diary

On Wed 17th Feb at 7:30pm - 3WOTM Online

Have a general chat at our monthly Derby meeting on Zoom, perhaps with a glass/mug of a drink of your choice to hand. We aim for it to last around an hour and twenty minutes. Please contact me for the Zoom link and with any questions. Contact Susan on [Phone Number] or [Email]

Susan Graves

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] / [Mobile Number] for details

photo of Steve Thomas

Hertfordshire Happenings

On Thu 4th Feb at 8:00pm - FThOTM

Sadly, COVID-19 appears to continue to make a physical meeting impracticable at the Three Magnets, so we will again be joining the Sudbury (East Anglia region) Zoom meeting. The invitation is open to all Hertfordshire members. Previous Zoom meetings have provided lively and interesting conversation, and new faces are always welcome. Zoom Meeting ID: [Requires Login] Passcode: [Requires Login] Please call [Phone Number] or email [Email] for details.

Steve Thomas

Contact [Email] or [Mobile Number] for details

photo of Haydn Starkie

In Leicestershire

On Mon 15th Feb at 8:00pm - Pub Social

Join me for our usual convivial third Monday of the month gathering at the Cradock Arms, 201 Knighton Road, Leicester, LE2 3TT. You are welcome to bring a friend or partner. Look out for the Mblem or Magazine. If you need any directions or encouragement, please contact me on [Phone Number] or at [Email].

On Sat 27th Feb at 7:00pm - Pub Meal

We hope to dine at the Soar Bridge Inn, 29 Bridge Street, Barrow upon Soar LE12 8PN this month. You are welcome to bring a friend along but booking in advance is essential so please contact me by 20th February if you want to come to the meal. You can telephone me on [Phone Number] or e-mail[Email]

Haydn Starkie

Contact [Email] or [Mobile Number] for details

photo of Jacquie Harrison

Lively Lincs

On Sat 13th Feb at 12:00pm - SSOTM pub or Zoom discussion

This month's topic is: “Can you be guilty of being innocent?” Contact Jacquie in advance to confirm whether pub or online meeting. An online meeting will use Zoom, please request the link. Alternatively, the pub venue is the Adam & Eve Tavern opposite Pottergate Arch, all welcome and you can bring a guest. Contact Jacquie on [Phone Number] or [Email].

On Thu 25th Feb at 11:00am - Coffee morning

Because of current restrictions, Jacquie will now be hosting a coffee morning on Zoom in place of the planned walk in Lincoln. It's on Thursday the 25th, at 11am. People interested in attending should email Jacquie for the Zoom link beforehand. Contact Jacquie for details/encouragement on [Phone Number] or [Email] .

Jacquie Harrison

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] / [Mobile Number] for details

photo of Val Hinkins

Mid Bucks

On Sun 7th Feb at 2:00pm - Games Afternoon

Please join Dave and Alison on-line for a relaxed and informal Sunday afternoon of board games and chat. All members and friends are welcome. We will be using and either Skype or Zoom for chat. For more information & connection details please contact Dave a few days beforehand. Either telephone him on [Phone Number] or e-mail to [Email]

On Sun 21st Feb at 2:00pm - Games Afternoon

Please join Dave and Alison on-line for a relaxed and informal Sunday afternoon of board games and chat. All members and friends are welcome. We will be using and either Skype or Zoom for chat. For more information & connection details please contact Dave a few days beforehand. Either telephone him on [Phone Number] or e-mail to [Email]

On Fri 26th Feb at 10:30am - Coffee & Chat

Keep the date free and join me either in High Wycombe or on-line for relaxed conversation, cake and coffee. (Make Your Own Coffee if on-line!) Please contact me a few days beforehand to confirm the venue and that the meeting is going ahead on [Phone Number] or e-mail me at [Email]

For further details or encouragement contact me on [Phone Number] or e-mail me at [Email]

Val Hinkins

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] for details

photo of Jo Sidebottom

Mensans in MK & Bedford

On Sat 6th Feb at 11:00am - Walk

Weather and Covid permitting, we are going to follow the art trail along the canal between Portway and Dansteed. Meet in the Lovat Fields overflow car park. Contact [Email], or [Phone Number] / [Phone Number] beforehand to confirm it’s going ahead.

On Mon 15th Feb at 7:30pm - 3MOTM Quiz

Fun general knowledge quiz via Zoom. Link will be publicised nearer the time via social media, or contact Jo at [Email], or [Phone Number] / [Phone Number].

On Sun 28th Feb at 10:30am - Sunday Breakfast

Join us online via Zoom as we chat over breakfast. Zoom link will be publicised nearer the time via social media, or contact Jo at [Email], or [Phone Number] / [Phone Number].

Just a reminder about our M-MK & Bedford Facebook group – if you would like to join please search for the group and send me a request. I also keep an email distribution list for meeting reminders and any last-minute changes, so if you would like to be added to this please let me know.

We hope to see as many of you as possible at one or other of our events this month. Do remember that you’re welcome to bring a guest with you, so if you’ve never been to a Mensa event and are a little nervous about coming along on your own, just bring a friend.

Jo Sidebottom

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] / [Mobile Number] for details

News from Northampton

On Sat 13th Feb at 10:30am - Pub Walk

Mixed walk along two canals, farmland, country lanes and a bit of Jurassic Way. Meet at ‘The Wharf Inn’, Welford. NN6 6JQ (644 807) 8km (2 hrs) Drink afterwards at 12.45. At ‘The Wharf’. For help or encouragement [Phone Number][Email]

photo of Maxine Bates

Notts News

On Fri 5th Feb at 8:00pm - 5OTM

Will we be able to meet at the Vat & Fiddle pub on Queensbridge Road, adjacent to Castle Rock Brewery and near Nottingham railway station? Contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email] to check please.

On Thu 11st Feb at 7:30pm - Natter & Nosh

Dinner at The Cadland on High Road in Chilwell may be possible but with limited numbers and pre-booking. Menu at Contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email] if interested.

On Sun 21st Feb at 11:00am - Family Mensa

Family friendly visit to Belton House near Grantham. Belton House is a historic house owned by the National Trust set in beautiful parklands with an amazing adventure playground, and there are usually activities during half term. Charge for entry (free for National Trust members) and booking may be necessary. Please contact me beforehand so we can plan our visit based on interests and any potential restrictions. Mob: [Phone Number]/email: [Email]

On Tue 23rd Feb at 7:30pm - Eating Meeting

Please contact Maxine to find out if our restaurant visit is able to go ahead this month and if so where. [Phone Number] or [Email]

On Sat 27th Feb at 10:30am - Walk

An easy walk around Bestwood Country Park. Meet in the free car park (NG6 8TQ) and we'll choose a 3-5 mile trail dependant on weather and participants. Hopefully the Victorian winding engine house will be open to visit before we set off. Please check this event is going ahead and confirm attendance in case we need to restrict numbers. Phone Maxine on [Phone Number] or email [Email]

Ciao for now!

Maxine Bates

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] for details

Special Interest Groups (SIGS)

British Mensa SIGs are proposed and headed by members, to share their passion for a particular subject, each with their own FREEnewsletters, sent by PDF, and some have activities, events or online discussions. You will find a long list at Here's a sample of the type of groups you could join, and if there isn't one on the list for the topic you're passionate about, maybe you could form one of your own.

To join a SIG:- visit the web sit eat email or call 01902 772771 quoting your membership number.

Vegan SIG

The Vegan SIG is open to anyone who is interested in veganism - Veganism is characterised by compassion for all animals, the planet and personal physical health, is a lifestyle characterised by the exclusion of consumption or use of animal products. The purpose of the Vegan SIG is to be informative about veganism, share news, stories, recipes, quotes, memes, and much more! Members may contribute to the newsletter if they wish to, and there is the opportunity to connect with other vegans.

Sherlock Holmes SIG

If you?re interested in Sherlock Holmes, whether it?s the original books, the Basil Rathbone films, the various TV series starring Peter Cushing, Jeremy Brett and Benedict Cumberbatch or something else, join Sherlock Holmes SIG and share your enthusiasm.

We also consider Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, whose life and times were every bit as extraordinary as those of Holmes.

Also, just as important - the fictional detectives who followed Holmes.

Musicians and Singers SIG

This SIG is for anyone who enjoys playing a musical instrument or singing or creating music in some way. The emphasis is on enjoyment not expertise. We like to hear about our members?experiences which could be performing in front of thousands of people or sitting at home alone playing an instrument.

The aim of this SIG is for members to share real-life experiences of enjoying music rather than to have intellectual discussions about music theory.

Philosophical Discussion SIG

The word 'Philosophy' originates from the Greekphilosophia, meaning 'love of wisdom'. Philosophy is interesting not because it provides answers (it doesn't) but because of the questions it raises. The SIG journal THINK! features articles exploring philosophical, political, religious or scientific theories, biographies, book reviews, and readers? letters. It also poses questions for discussion.

20 Questions (No. 232)

The answers to our Christmas quiz were Germany, Blitzen, Avenue Q, T SEliot, Alabama, Darwin, 364, Coca Cola, Flying Fish Cove, cranberry sauce, 6th January, Nuremberg, Ebenezer, Oliver Cromwell, white, Franz Gruber, a button, Rubik?s cube,Washington Dulles airport and KFC. The winner of a £10 One4All gift token was..... Nigel Bryant of Bedford. Congratulations!

Thank you to Pamela Covey for compiling our quiz this month. All the answers are celebrities with alliterative names. Send your entries to arrive by 20th February to '20 Questions (No. 232)', [Address] or [Email] remembering to include your name and address in case you win.

£10 Gift Card to be Won

1. This actress is best known by the first name of her TV detective character.

2. Carol Vorderman's successor, but who's counting?

3. Perhaps best known as the long-suffering girlfriend/wife of a popular TV doctor?

4. One of several 'Bond girls' in Roger Moore's last film appearance as 007.

5. Could this actress really tell Mel Gibson what women want?

6. Perhaps the original 'sex kitten', she is now best known as an animal rights activist.

7. A former American actress, she moved on to a different kind of 'starring role'.

8. This strawberry-blond Hollywood A-lister has two Academy Awards to his name.

9. This comedian has sometimes described himself as looking like 'a rather camp Chinaman'.

10. Far better known by his stage name, this actor might also answer to 'Alfie'.

11. Is this actor filed under 'X'?

12. Early in her career, this actress had a role in 'The L-Shaped Room' starring Leslie Caron.

13. Three times Wimbledon men's singles champion in the 1980s.

14. The highest-grossing film director in history, he is also a producer and screenwriter.

15. Nominated for six Academy Awards, there is little 'Doubt' about this actress's success.

16. This magazine publisher might have been known as the original 'Playboy'.

17. Famous for her trademark hair and teeth, this actress may have been viewed as 'angelic'.

18. She played the title role in the original film version of Stephen King's first published novel.

19. One of the greatest actresses of all time, her career spanned silent movies through to the 'talkies'.

20. Perhaps the most famous 'blonde bombshell' of them all.