Buffet And Quiz Night

Regional News

Many thanks to those who made it through the snow to attend our buffet and quiz night in March. You will find a review and a few photos in this issue of Empress. Prior to the event the officers of East Midlands Mensa held their annual committee meeting where various items were discussed. These included suggestions for future social events though ideas are always gratefully received so please contact either myself or your Local Officer if you have any. Some regions have roles that we do not. It was felt the East Midlands don’t require these as they have been tried unsuccessfully in the past (such as Young Mensa Officer) or our geography does not make the role beneficial (such as New Member Contact as those joining in Hertfordshire probably wouldn’t want to be contacted by a member living in Lincolnshire). However, we are still seeking Local Officers for Leicester, Luton and Northampton and would appreciate a third Empress Editor to help Maria and Mark. If you would like further information or a no obligation chat on either of these roles I would be delighted to hear from you.

Currently we send out national book tokens as prizes for the Empress ‘20 questions’ quizzes. Would you like to see this continue or would you prefer a different prize? There has been some discussion on the East Midlands Mensa Facebook group but no definite opinion as yet. The subject of the new data protection act that comes into force this month was also discussed so that we can all be compliant. (article published on the April edition of Empress)

There is lots happening this month around our region with hopefully something for every taste and budget. Whether you enjoy eating and drinking, visiting castles or caves, or testing your brain cells at quizzes, please go along and support the hosts of these events if you can. Remember you are welcome to take a non-member guest with you unless otherwise stated.

I look forward to hearing from you on [Phone Number] or [Email] or seeing you at one of our events.

Maxine Bates

Regional Officer


Welcome to the May Edition of Empress.

Last month I was writing this editorial “while looking through the window and enjoying the snowy views from the comfort of my home”. One month later and well into Spring and it has been more snow forecasted for Easter Monday (April’s fool coming late!). However, Nature is defying this crazy weather and we can see spring-like scenery everywhere (unless it is covered in snow).

We have a great variety of events, including a bank holiday mini weekend and . the last Eurovision contest for Eurozone UK. Maxine will have to start thinking of other events for this time next year.

Sit down, relax and enjoy the reading.

Maria Falces

Events and Meetings

In the current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 coronavirus, the expectation is that all events listed here are likely to be 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.

In Leicestershire

On Mon 21st May at 8:00pm - Pub Social

Join us for our usual convivial third Monday of the Month gathering at the Cradock Arms, 201 Knighton Road, Leicester, LE2 3TT. We usually gather in the lower part towards the rear of the bar. Look out for the magazine or Mlem. For directions or encouragement please contact me on [Phone Number] or by email at [Email].

On Sat 26th May at 7:00pm - Pub Meal

Our last Saturday of the month meal falls on Bank Holiday weekend and will be at the Britannia Inn, 47 Main Street, Queniborough LE7 3DB. Please let Sue know if you can join us by Friday 18th May. You can contact her on [Phone Number] or [Email]

On Tue 29th May at 7:30pm - Eating Meeting

Our last Tuesday of the month eating meeting will be at a Taste of Thai restaurant 84-86 Market Street, Ashby de la Zouch, LE65 1AP. There is on street parking or use the car park on South Street. You can view the menu at http://www.tasteofthai-ashby.co.uk/index.html If you would like to join us at this excellent restaurant, please contact me before Friday 25th May on [Phone Number] or at [Email]

Lively Lincs

On Sat 12th May at 12:00pm - Pub discussion

Our regular second Saturday meeting. Join us in the alcove of the Adam and Eve, 25 Lindum Road (opposite Pottergate arch) for a discussion around “What is the best way to explore human nature: psychology, philosophy, or biology?” All welcome. Contact Jacquie on [Phone Number] or [Email] for more details.

On Sat 19th May at 11:00am - Spring woodland walk

Join us for an amble around Goslings Corner Wood, a small Lincs Wildlife Trust reserve, where we hope to see bluebells, ransom and other wild flora. Meet in the small car park. Afterwards we'll go for lunch at a pub in Bardney, TBC, all welcome. Contact Helen on [Email] or [Phone Number].

Jacquie Harrison

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

photo of Maxine Bates

Notts News

On Sat 5th May at 8:00pm - 5OTM

Join Mark and co for this month's get together at the Vat & Fiddle pub, Queensbridge Road, NG2 1NB. Look for Mblem on the table most likely in Goldings Room to left of bar. The venue is close to bus and tram routes and has free parking outside. New faces always welcome. Contact Mark on [Email] if needing further info or just turn up on the night.

On Thu 10th May at 7:30pm - Natter & Nosh

Find us on reserved tables to the far side of the bar at The Cadland, High Road, Chilwell, NG9 5EG. Dine from 7.30pm or come along later for just a drink. Menu at www.emberinns.co.uk. Look for yellow Mblem or contact Maxine in advance on [Phone Number] or [Email]

On Fri 11th May at 7:30pm - Supper & Quiz Night

A charity supper and quiz night at Greasley Parish Hall, Dovecote Road, Newthorpe, NG16 3QN. Tickets £7 each. Includes baked potatoes with choice of fillings with salad plus gateaux for dessert. BYOB. Followed by a general knowledge quiz. Play in teams of up to four people with prizes. All proceeds to Cancer Research UK. Contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email] to purchase tickets by 9th please. All welcome!

On Sat 12/Sun 13 May at Various - Underground Festival

Tours and talks at some of the 800 caves beneath the city not normally open to the public including prison cells at the National Justice Museum, caves under the Malt Cross Victorian Music Hall, cocktails at Curious Tavern's Lost Caves and much more. Contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email] to express interest and for further details.

On Sat 12th May at 7:00pm - Eurovision Party

My annual shindig to celebrate all things Eurovision at my home in Langley Mill. Watch the contest, heckle the acts, bring a buffet item and/or wear something related to a European country. Optional sweepstake too. Or just socialise in the kitchen/garden. To RSVP or get directions contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email]

On Tue 15th May at 7:00pm - 3TuOTM

Join members from Newark and environs for interesting discussion along with food and/or drink at The Ram on Castle Gate. Menu at theramnewark.com. Look for Mblem to right of entrance. Please contact Pete on [Phone Number] or [Email] if needing directions/encouragement. New faces welcome!

On Sat 26-Sun 27 May at Various - Newark Weekend

A range of events on offer including CAMRA real ale and cider festival, re-enactment and living history camp at Newark Castle, costumed talks at the National Civil War Centre, guided walks, artisan and craft fair in the Market Place plus lunches and dinners. Contact [Email] to express interest and for further details and timings by 22nd please.

Ciao for now!

Maxine Bates

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] for details

News from Northampton

On Sat 5th May at 11:00am - Archery

We've got the opportunity for an archery session with the Duston Bowmen at the Brampton Heath Golf Centre, Sandy Lane, Church Brampton NN6 8AX. The cost is £10 for two hours of coaching and a fun competition. Parking, refreshments, etc. are available but numbers are limited (though friends can come and watch). Book your place with Marianne ([Phone Number] or email: [Email]) by 28 April - first come, first served!

On Sun 20th May at 10:30am - Brunch

Our usual breakfast/brunch meeting is on Sunday 20 May where we will be debating our relative archery skills after Pete's quiz in the Rendezvous Coffee Shop in Market Walk in Northampton Town Centre. Contact Marianne on [Phone Number] or email: [Email] for information or encouragement.

photo of Richard Allen

Hertfordshire Happenings

On Thu 3rd May at 8:00pm - FThOTM

Will spring be in the air? As ever, we are at the Three Magnets, Leys Avenue, Letchworth! Thursday nights are curry nights but other food (standard Wetherspoons' fare) is available as well. Leys Avenue is the main shopping street in Letchworth and is a few minutes' walk from the station (Kings Cross to Cambridge line). Call me on [Phone Number] for more details and encouragement.

On Fri 25th May at 8:00pm - LFOTM

As ever, we are at the Cowper Arms, Digswell. The pub is next to Welwyn North station and is served by stopping trains from Kings Cross to Peterborough and Cambridge. Good food, beer and conversation guaranteed! Please call me on [Phone Number] for more details and encouragement.

Richard Allen

Contact [Email] or [Phone Number] for details

photo of Jo Sidebottom

Mensans in MK & Bedford

On Fri 11th May at 6:30pm - South African meal

Join us at the Braai Shack in Wolverton for a taste of South Africa. Please let me know by Wed 9th if you are coming so I can book a table. Contact Jo at [Email], or [Phone Number] / [Phone Number] for directions/encouragement.

On Sun 13th May at 10:00am - Breakfast

We're back at Carluccio's in the Centre:MK for the summer. Join us from 10am for a full breakfast, a snack, or just a drink - look out for the Mblem. Contact Jo at [Email], or [Phone Number] / [Phone Number] for directions/encouragement.

On Mon 21st May at 8:15pm - 3MOTM Quiz

David is hosting our monthly quiz outing at The Barge at Woolstone. Meet from 8.15 for a 8.30pm start - cost is £1 per person. Please let David know if you are coming so he knows if we will be one team or two - [Phone Number] /[Email].

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

photo of Val Hinkins

Mid Bucks

On Mon 7th May at 2:00pm - Indoor board games

As an experiment we are trying a Bank Holiday afternoon games meeting. All members welcome, including accompanied children (10-ish years and over). Come and enjoy some relaxed board games. Tea, coffee and soft drinks provided. Space is limited, so please contact Dave for directions and to discuss what games you would like to play on [Phone Number] or by e-mail at [Email]

On Sat 12th May at 2:30pm - Garden & Studio visit

Join me at The Chinnery, Church Road, Penn HP10 8NX, which is open in aid of Scannappeal. Admission £5. One and a half acre garden, sculpture, art works and pottery. Refreshments available. For further information or encouragement, contact me on [Phone Number] or e-mail me at [Email]

On Fri 25th May at 10:30am - Coffee & Chat

Coffee at the newly opened Vanilla Pod, 17 White Hart Street, High Wycombe, Bucks, HP11 2HL. I will get a table upstairs where it is quieter. Hope to see you there! No need to book, but if you want me to look out for you, let me know you are coming 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 Susan Graves

Derby Diary

On Mon 7th May at 1:00pm - Castle Visit

Visit the ruined Tutbury castle dating back to Norman times and take in the Living History event (12th Century) – cost is £6. We can also take in a tea shop in the nearby town. Postcode is DE13 9JF. Meet near the ticket office in the main car park. Let me know you are interested by emailing [Email] or ringing [Phone Number]

On Wed 16th May at 7:30pm - 3WOTM

It's the '3rd Wednesday' so find us on a long table at the rear of the Standing Order on Iron Gate in the city centre. Wetherspoon food and/or drink make this a good value night out. Look for yellow Mblem or contact Maxine on [Phone Number] or [Email] if needing directions or encouragement to come along.

Susan Graves

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

Buffet and Quiz Night at Review by Maxine Bates

Thinking caps on for one of the quiz teams

Unfortunately around 25% of attendees didn't make it to our buffet and quiz night at The Kegworth Hotel on Saturday 3rd March - and we'd chosen to hold the event in March rather than February to avoid bad weather! - So thank you to everyone who did venture through the snow to join the fun. The evening began with a little mingling against background music so that guests from around our region and beyond could meet each other.

A hot buffet was served with very ample food due to the missing guests and the fact that the hotel kept bringing out more chips and garlic bread. Most people managed a second helping and some even a third! Guests included a junior member, the current holder of the 'brain of Mensa' title and a couple from as far as the Wirral. It was quite a challenge for me compiling the quiz but I think I gauged the level about right. With 13 rounds on different subjects including a picture round hopefully there was something for everyone. Congratulations to the winning team of Nick, Les, Jo and Chris who won a hamper of booze between them plus a family voucher to visit the Midland Railway in Derbyshire each.

Half way through the evening we had a break to draw the raffle so several guests went home with lovely prizes and we raised £111 for Cancer Research UK. Many thanks to those members who donated prizes.

The event ended around 11pm when those staying overnight adjourned to the bar until the early hours of the morning. Only the stalwarts made it to the Donington Collection the following day to view the world's largest collection of Formula One cars. If you attended and enjoyed this event you may wish to come along to our next supper and quiz night at Greasley Parish Hall (NG16 3QN) on Friday 11th May. See Empress or Mensa Magazine for details.

Maxine Bates

Sieges & Cider Weekend, Newark, Notts Saturday 26th/Sunday 27th May

Come and join us in Newark, Notts, over the spring bank holiday weekend. There are a variety of activities happening in the town: - CAMRA beer and cider festival at Riverside Park (£10 entry) - Re-enactment of the 1218 siege and living history camp at Newark Castle (free) - Costumed talks on the 1643 siege in the National Civil War Centre (£8 entry) - Guided town walks (free) - Artisan and craft fair in the Market Place (Sunday only) Join in as much or as little as you like. There will be optional lunches and dinners for a Mensa group too but the venues will depend on numbers and whether table reservation is needed. For further information, accommodation suggestions or to express interest in any part of the weekend please contact organiser Sally at before 22nd May so that a firmer itinerary can be put together. Details will also be posted on the East Midlands Mensa Facebook group as and when available.

Contact Sally on [Email]

20 Questions (No. 199)

The answers to the March quiz were Canterbury, winning an international competition, marble, Etoile, St Paul’s, Eiffel Tower, Ivan The Terrible, San Marco, Cardinal Wolsey, Devonshire, Castle Howard, Cologne, F W Woolworth, Venus De Milo, 1894, Montmartre, Michelangelo, Myanmar, St Petersburg, to cover smoke stains. Well done to Marianne Croll of Derby who wins the £10 book token.

This month’s quiz tests your knowledge of trees and thanks go to Chris Lonsbrough for compiling it. Send your answers to arrive by 20th May by post to ‘20 Questions (No. 199)’, [Address] or by email to [Email]. Don’t forget to include your name and address in case you win.

1. Which tree leaves are the symbol of the National Trust?

2. Which three coniferous trees are native to Britain?

3. Which tree with yellow flowers has poisonous seeds?

4. What colour are the flowers of the horse chestnut?

5. From which tree is turpentine obtained?

6. Which tree produces cobs and filberts?

7. What is the more common name of the great maple?

8. From which tree is cork obtained?

9. To which family of trees does the umbrella tree belong?

10. What is another name for the Spanish chestnut?

11. Which tree can be English, American or Eurasian?

12. From which tree is sago obtained?

13. The teak is native to which continent?

14. Which tree produces “keys”?

15. What colour are the flowers of the jacaranda tree?

16. To which group of trees do blue gum and red gum belong?

17. What is another name for the linden tree?

18. Which tree produces the seeds from which chocolate is made?

19. Which beech tree has purple leaves?

20. From which continent did the monkey puzzle tree originate?