February 2015 Newsletter

In this newsletter we have the announcement of trips to Harvington Hall and Jodrell Bank and of the Combined Rambling and Sightseeing trip to Cornwall. There is 1 place left on the Mainline Steam trip on the Cumbrian Coastal Explorer, so if you are interested in that, you should get your booking form into Phil Dalton as soon as possible. Also, if you want to go to the Spring Lunch at Nuthurst Grange on 26th March, please get your booking form into Gary Wooding as soon as possible.

Michael Fabianski, Newsletter Editor. E-mail: ibmmidretnews@gmail.com


Chairman’s Notes

Now that we have reached the middle of February this year’s AGM is getting much closer and concentrating the Committee’s mind. (Can a Committee have a mind??). Please will you all make every effort to attend and let Brian Long have your names?

From a financial point of view we are still living a hand-to-mouth existence. The grant for the first half of 2015 was not received until this month, and we still have no indication of how much we will receive for the second half of the year. This has meant that we have had to announce some events with unsubsidised prices, and just hoping that we will be able to add subsidies later, which is unsatisfactory for you, our members, and for the organisers.

It is possible that the above may have had a bearing on the lack of bookings for the Reims trip, which we have had to cancel. Hopefully this will turn out to be an isolated instance.

All good wishes

Alan Bridgman
IBM Midlands Retirees Club


IBM Retirees Annual General Meeting

The 2015 Annual General Meeting will take place on
Monday 16th March 2015

The Royal British Legion (Knowle) Club Ltd
1611 Warwick Road
West Midlands B93 9LF


10.30 Refreshments
11.00 Welcome by Chairman
Review and approve 2014 Minutes
Treasurer’s Report
Membership Secretary’s Report
Chairman’s Report
Rambling Section
Matters Arising
Election of Committee Members
IBM UK Clubs Oversight Manager

Buffet Lunch

If you wish to attend this meeting please contact me via email as soon as possible in order to finalise catering arrangements.

The minutes of the 2013 AGM and the minutes of the 2014 AGM (subject to approval) can be found on this website.


Brian Long


Event Report: Ethnic Meal - 21 January 2015

Twenty members gathered expectantly at the Turtle Bay Restaurant in Leamington on a cold evening in January for a taste of the Caribbean and they were not disappointed. The atmosphere in the restaurant was friendly and lively as we were greeted with a range of exotic cocktails to get the evening going. There was also a wide choice for each of the three courses (which had been pre-ordered) and, in spite of the restaurant being busy with other diners, each course was served promptly and efficiently. Some of the dishes were somewhat spicier than some people expected but everybody thoroughly enjoyed the experience and vowed to return another time.

Dave Compton


This is not a Retiree Club event, but you might be interested in a wine trip to the Douro in Portugal and the Duero in Spain which is being organised by Rick Paslawski:

There is a possibility that I may be able to organise a wine trip to the Douro in Portugal and the Duero (same river) in Spain. I would like to aim for Sunday June 14th or 21st with the aim of spending six nights in Portugal (based in a 4 star hotel in Regua de Douro) and three nights in Spain (four star hotel In Vallodolid) plus two nights on board ship to/from Plymouth. Cost would be around £1050 pp for b&b each day, cabin and dinner on the ship, lunch or dinner each day, all the wine tastings and excursions, plus coaching to/from IBM Warwick. I need at least 20 takers to make this fly and would appreciate an early indication of your interest. Please feel free to circulate to your contacts in order to boost numbers.

Please contact Rick at rick.paslawski1@gmail.com if you are interested.



Click here to see the list of the events which are planned for 2015. The following is the status of those which have been announced.

Booking Conditions. Click here to read the terms and conditions.

Photographs from Past Events. Click here or here to view a selection of photographs from past events.


Spring Lunch - Thursday 26th March 2015 (Organiser: Gary Wooding)
Nuthurst Grange Ln, Hockley Heath, Warwickshire B94 5NL

This year we are returning to the superb country house hotel of Nuthurst Grange, set in more than seven acres of private woodlands at Hockley Heath. those who were waitlisted for last year’s event are advised to book early.

We have exclusive use of the Packwood Room, and have booked a guest speaker to enlighten us about the amazing Jennens case that inspired Charles Dickens to write Bleak House.

The price for this event, including a welcome drink, lunch, wine, and Tea/Coffee, is dependent on this year’s IBM subsidy (which is reduced yet again), but is expected to be around £31.00 for member/first guest. Until this is finalised, and to secure your booking, please send a deposit of £10 per member/first guest. Second guests may be accommodated at £45.49, but will be waitlisted initially.

Please make your menu choices from the following sample menu, which could change:

Tea or Coffee

Please note any special dietary requirements or food allergies on the booking form.

To book a place, fill in the booking form and send it with your cheque made payable to IBM Retirees Club (Midlands), to:-

Gary Wooding, 64 Binswood Avenue, Leamington Spa, CV32 5RY.
Email: binswood@gmail.com, Telephone: 01926 425485

Refer to the document Event Booking Conditions for terms and conditions.

Go to Booking Form


Cumbrian Coastal Explorer - Mainline Steam trip, Saturday 18 April (Organiser: Phil Dalton)

Enjoy a scenic day out as we storm Shap in the morning, then after a short break in Carlisle, return down the most picturesque Cumbrian Coast.
Our day begins behind heritage diesel No. 47773 “The Queen Mother” from Tyseley to Carnforth, where Vintage Trains flagship locomotive, Ex-GWR No. 5043 “Earl of Mount Edgcumbe” takes over for the punishing climb of the ferocious gradients of Grayrigg and Shap, descending into the border City of Carlisle, steeped in ancient history dating back to the beginning of the British Isles.
After a short Afternoon break in Carlisle, we return around the longest and most scenic coastal line in England. The beautiful, twisting Cumbrian coast route hugs the coastline offering spectacular views across the Solway Firth and towards the Isle of Man, passing through historic Whitehaven, pretty Ravenglass and around Morecambe Bay with the background of the Lake District mountains awash with the setting sun.
Upon our return to Carnforth, the diesel will pilot the train down the WCML from Carnforth back to Tyseley via Birmingham New Street.
Commencing at Tyseley Warwick Road the train additionally picks up at; Birmingham New Street - Wolverhampton, Stafford, Crewe and Wigan NW.
Hauled by No. 5043 “Earl of Mount Edgcumbe” from Carnforth, over Shap, to Carlisle and on return from Carlisle, along the Cumbrian Coast back to Carnforth.

Meals included:-
Full English Breakfast
3 Course roast dinner

Please include any special dietary requirements on the booking form. Due to the small kitchen facilities on the train, any such special requirements will be checked with Vintage Trains to ensure that such requirements can be accommodated.

Stations & Times

Pick up/Set down : Tyseley Warwick Road platform*, Birmingham New Street, Wolverhampton, Stafford and Crewe.
* Please note: there is a 10 minute walk between Tyseley mainline station and Tyseley Warwick Road Platform (which is situated within the Tyseley Loco Works site).
Layover : Carlisle
Times : subject to confirmation (expect an early start)
Tickets, final information and confirmed timings are mailed out to passengers AS SOON AS VINTAGE TRAINS RECEIVE FINAL TIMINGS FROM NETWORK RAIL, normally five working days before a tour is scheduled to depart.

Cost: As the Midlands Retirees Club has not been notified as to the amount of the Grant it receives from IBM for 2015, the cost is expected to be around £125 for members/1st Guests. Therefore until the Grant is known, a deposit of £50 per person is requested.

To book your place, please send the completed Booking Form and cheque, made out to IBM Retirees (Midlands) for the appropriate amount, to:

Phil Dalton, Tanglewood, 22 Warwick Road, Wellesbourne, Warwick, CV35 9LX.
Email: phil_dalton@btinternet.com. Telephone: 0791-8131503

Refer to the document Event Booking Conditions for terms and conditions.

Go to Booking Form


Harvington Hall, Thursday 23 April (Organiser: David Dagley)

Enjoy an unusual day out as we try to find the ‘priest holes’ hidden away in Harvington Hall. This will be a ‘get yourself there trip’ with lunch and a guided tour of the house provided. There are many stairs but a video of the hides can be watched instead.

Harvington Hall is a moated Elizabethan manor-house situated south-east of Kidderminster. Many of the rooms still have their original Elizabethan wall-paintings and the Hall contains the finest series of priests hiding places anywhere in the country. The Elizabethan house was built in the 1580s by Humphrey Pakington.

Priests Hiding Places
The priest-hides were built at the end of the 16th Century, when it was high treason for a Catholic priest to be in England. The hiding places at Harvington are considered the finest surviving, and four of them, all sited round the Great Staircase, show the trademarks of the master builder Nicholas Owen, who was at work from 1588 onwards, was arrested at Hindlip House, near Worcester in 1606 and tortured to death in the Tower of London.


Harvington Hall Lane
Harvington, DY10 4LR

As the Midlands Retirees Club has not been notified of the amount of grant it will receive for 2015, the cost will not be greater than £20 for members/1st Guests. Max 20 people.

To book a place, complete the booking form and send it with a deposit cheque for £10 made payable to IBM Retirees Club (Midlands), to:-

David Dagley, 47 Hanbury Road, Dorridge, Solihull, B93 8DW
Email: david.dagley@lineone.net. Telephone: 01564 230020

Refer to the document Event Booking Conditions for terms and conditions.

Go to Booking Form (or Word document).


Combined Rambling and Sightseeing trip to Cornwall
Monday 4th - Friday 8th May 2015 (inclusive)

(Organisers: Alan Bridgman (Sightseeing) and Terry King (Rambling))

Cornwall was the suggestion last year of our friend Barry Wiggins. So Terry and I thought that it was very appropriate this year to adopt his suggestion. We are using the services again of Group Travel and we are booked in to the excellent 4* Fistral Beach Hotel & Spa in Newquay. The hotel overlooks Fistral Beach and comes complete with an indoor swimming pool, fitness centre and a minimum of 2 nights live entertainment.


The sightseeing itinerary will hopefully include some or all of the following:-

Provisional Cost

Depending on the number of people who wish to go on this trip, the cost will be £327 per member and 1st guest or £397 per 2nd guest. This cost includes 4 nights half board accommodation (DBB), executive coach travel to and from IBM Warwick and for excursions during the trip.


You have probably worked out by now that we have chosen an interesting week for this trip. Monday is a Bank Holiday, which I hope will work in our favour as most of the traffic should be coming back from Cornwall. But the General Election takes place on Thursday. So if anyone wishes to vote, you will have to arrange for a Postal Vote (something that I have never done before). The last date for new Postal Vote applications is 21st April. To find out more information look at this website www.aboutmyvote.co.uk/how-do-i-vote/voting-by-post.

Alan Bridgman
Sightseeing Organiser

Refer to the document Event Booking Conditions for terms and conditions.

Go to Booking Form (or Word document).


Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre and Observatory, Wednesday 15 July (Organiser: Simon Barratt)

How would you like to visit the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre and Observatory and stand in the shadow of that great big dish that is the radio telescope?

We are organising a day-trip to the Observatory on 15 July 2015 for twenty (20) lucky Members. The cost for Members is £35.70 each (Non-Members £38.75), which covers the cost of a light lunch on arrival, an introductory talk, and the entrance fee.

Please complete the booking form and send it, with a deposit cheque for £10 per person, made out to IBM Retirees (Midlands),to

Simon Barratt, Laurel House, The Green, Tredington, Shipston on Stour, CV36 4NJ

to arrive no later than 24 June 2015. Please include any special dietary requirements.

For further information, visit their website at www.jodrellbank.net.

Refer to the document Event Booking Conditions for terms and conditions.

Go to Booking Form


Sub-Groups of Retirees Club and Employee Club

IBM Retirees Rambling Group

The IBM (Warwick) Rambling Club is now a subsection of the IBM Midlands Retiree Club. Any member of the Midlands Retiree club is welcome to join our subsection. Our subs are £5 per person per year. Our programme consists of a meal in late February, a monthly ramble with a pub lunch using own transport and an AGM in December. We also share a 3-4 day trip using coach transport with retiree sightseers in May.

Any retiree who would like to give us a try, can come along on one of our monthly walks without needing to join. Meal subsidies are available only to members and not for those joining us on a trial basis.

For more information, please contact Terry King, terryaking@hotmail.com.


IBM Retirees PC and Technology Group (founded by Harry Green)

The IBM Retirees PC and Technology Group meets every alternate month for a lively discussion on PC and technology topics in the digital age. There are usually one or two specific presentations given by members or by outside speakers, which the members of the Group have requested. We try to provide a reasonable balance between PC “techie” topics, new technology, and topics of a more general nature such as digital television, Internet telephony and digital photography. So whether you are a newcomer to the PC or a more experienced user, we hope you will find something of interest. You are very welcome to join us.

Contacts:- Roger Goodman email:- roger@northside.me.uk Alan Bridgman email:- abri@waitrose.com

Go to meeting dates and other information


Click on the links below for specific information. Links to booking forms are from the event announcement.

IBM Midlands Retiree Club Constitution Committee Contacts AGM Minutes Newsletter Archives IBM Club Warwick UK IBM Club Newsletter Production IBM Alumni Directory IBM Hursley Museum IBM Shares Employee Purchase Plan
IBM Pensions Trust (Rewards, IBM Contacts and other useful information)