Membership Advisers

This Committee is composed of WI Advisers and Assistants whose function is to assist, encourage and advise WIs, and potential trainee Advisers.These members are trained by the National Federation and appointed by the Federation to help with the smooth running of WIs and to give help and advice to committees.  We aim to make sure that WI members know everything that is available to them and to help them get the most from their subscription.  Our role is to create a link between the members and the County and National Federations.  WI Advisers are always looking for opportunities to open new WIs and trying to help with any problems that the existing ones may have.

We run training days on all aspects of committee work, on the expectations of Officers, committee members and new members.  These are informal sessions where you can learn with friends in small groups.  WI Advisers visit WIs and attend their Annual Meetings, can help with elections, and are always available to give help throughout the year.Your Adviser is only a phone call away, so do make contact as no query or problem is too small and a brief chat or prompt action can often help.

New Members?

Download our New Members Leaflet HERE

Where are the WIs in Norfolk?

Map of WIs in Norfolk

Download as pdf OR click here for Post Code finder OR click on the map below for all Norfolk WIs

Who are the WI Advisers?

These members are trained by the National Federation and appointed by the Norfolk Federation to help and encourage WIs and members with the smooth running of their WIs and to give help and advice to new committees. We aim to ensure WI members are aware of all the opportunities available to them .

Their role is to create a link between the members and the County and National Federations.

WI  Advisers are always looking for opportunities to open new WIs and trying to help with any challenges that the existing ones may have.

We run training days on all aspects of committee work, on public speaking and on the expectation of Treasurers, Secretaries , Presidents, committee members and new members. These are informal sessions where you can learn with friends in small groups.

WI Advisers visit WIs, by invitation, at their Annual Meetings, to help with elections, and are always available to give help throughout the year.
Adviser photoAdviser profile

Gail Armstrong

Gail Armstrong

My Grandmother and Mother were members of the WI, so it seemed natural that I should be as well.  When my brother and I were growing up, my mother was Secretary of the local WI, and during the school holidays we would be taken to the meetings and helped at any fund raising events - jumble sales being a good fundraiser.  When we moved to Norfolk, there was no WI.  In the village where I lived, Joan Parker, a VCO lived, and she set about starting one.  My mother and I attended the first meeting, along with about 15 others, and Witton & Ridlington WI was formed in October 1979.  My mother became President three years later and I was Secretary.  Out of the blue I received a letter inviting me to be an observer on the Membership Advisory committee, and then trained as a VCO (a couple of years later we became WI advisers).  I was an Adviser for about 13 years but stepped down when my husband became ill but in 2018 I was invited back as Adviser Assistant.  It has been lovely to catch up with old friends and meet up with new ones.  When I am not attending WI meetings, I am watching Norfolk play cricket, as I am Membership Secretary and President.
Lyn Weatherill

Lyn Weatherill
I have been a member of Dersingham Evening WI for 6 years.  I am currently their Secretary, a role I took on in November 2019, just before the first lockdown.  As I found myself with more questions than answers, I spent a lot of time on myWI, and turned to the team of advisers for help and advice.

As a result, I became interested in the role the advisers fulfill for all our WIs, and 12 months ago I started observing how the team work, with a view to joining them if I was right for the role.  The team were very welcoming and helpful, and I have learnt a lot about the WI during this time.

I have now been co-opted onto the team and help them wherever I can.  I am looking forward to starting my training in January to become a fully trained adviser.
Carole Cousins

Carole Cousins
Hello everyone, my name is Carole Cousins and I am a WI adviser.  I have been a member for over 30 years.  My WI is Barford Wramplingham & District, and I have been a President and Secretary for them - President for 13 years and Secretary for 5.  I enjoy meeting people and so I decided to train as an Adviser about 7 years ago.  It was full on training, done online and at Denman College, which I enjoyed very much.  Norfolk Advisers are a great team and I enjoy working with them.

I was born in Luton as my father was stationed at RAF Duxford and lived in Leagrave, and Luton was the nearest hospital.

Most of my life has been spent in Norfolk as my father was in the RAF and stationed at several bases in Norfolk.  We also went to Hong Kong and Singapore.  I married a Norfolk boy and have 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren (3 boys and a girl).  I have been a Brown Owl, Guide Captain and an Akela, and a school governor for 6 years.  I was on the village hall committee for many many years and chairman twice.

I now live in Attleborough and cover many of the WIs in this area.  I am always pleased to come and visit you as a social visit, or to help with any problems you may have - if I do not have the answer I usually know someone who does !
Brenda Shirley

Brenda Shirley

I have been a WI member for 10 years.  I joined New Costessey Evening WI.  My dual WI is Bowthorpe WI.

I have been an Adviser since 2018

I was a member of the Nosh and Natter catering team.

At this time I have the following WIs to look after:

Barford, Wramplingham & District, Barnham Broom & District, Bowthorpe, Brooke, Broome, City, Cringleford, Dereham, Ditchingham, Golden Triangle Girls, Hardingham, Mattishall & District, Mulbarton Evening, Norwich All Saints, Norwich Hobart, Old Catton Evening, Poringland, Rockland St Mary & District, Scarning, Toftwood, Yaxham & District, Wymondham Bridewell.

Margaret Collingwood

Margaret Collingwood
Kim Reynolds

Kim Reynolds
Living in Hertfordshire in the 1970s I was invited to attend my first WI meeting by a stalwart of the village, and the WI, as Esme Nix was the President of Hertford Heath.  I was always slightly in awe of her.

Eventually, I served on my first committee, not realising it was the beginning of 45 years of WI service, that gave me invaluable experience when I decided to train as a WI Adviser after moving to Norfolk in 2004.

Qualifying in 2011, I am part of the team of Advisers who make up the Membership Advisory Committee, meeting monthly at Evelyn Suffield House.

Our aim is to help members get the best out of the WI experience, attend Annual, celebratory, and ordinary WI meetings, and help in any way we can if there are WI related problems.

I have gained so much from being a member of the WI, not least confidence, and the opportunities to try so many things outside my comfort zone.

If you'd like to find out more about the role of an Adviser, consider observing our committee - you'd be very welcome.

I am Adviser for the following WIs:

Coltishall & Horstead, Filby & District, Great Ormesby, Hemsby, Hoveton & District, Ludham, Marsham, Mundesley, Neatishead, Barton Turf & District, Rock Buns & Rolling Pins, Rollesby & District, Sheringham, Smallburgh, Dilham & District, Sutton, Thurlton & District, Virtually Norfolk, Witton & Ridlington, Wroxham
Wendy Nash

Wendy Nash
I joined the WI in 1976, during that time I have been Secretary, Treasurer and President of my local WI.  At the end of the 1990's I joined the Federation Executive, now known as the Board of Trustees, and served for four years as the Assistant Federation treasurer.  I served on the International and Public Affairs (IPA) committee for 10 years, during which time I represented the Federation on the Norfolk Carers Forum.  I am now a member of the Leisure Activities committee, and for over 10 years have been responsible for organising the Federation Holidays.  I became a WI Independent Financial examiner a number of years ago, and enjoy helping and encouraging Treasurers with their financial queries.  Once a month I spend a half day in the Front office at Evelyn Suffield House, a great place to meet and chat with other members from around the County, who visit for various reasons.  About 5 years ago I became an Adviser Assistant, helping the Advisers with their workload.

Due to the closure of my village WI in the late 1990s, I am now a member of Old Catton WI, a very welcoming and vibrant WI.  

My hobbies are caravanning, reading, various crafts, and playing Bridge, where I am still on a very large learning curve!
Jane Broscomb

Jane Broscomb
I joined Toftwood WI in January 1981 when my husband was posted to RAF Swanton Morley.  I was a member there for over 35 years, including serving as President twice, and as Secretary towards the end of this time.

It was in 1990 that I was elected to the Executive Committee - now known as the Board of Trustees.  I held many positions including Vice Chairman and I was the first Federation Science Co-ordinator.

I now enjoy my membership of Watton Evening WI where I was made very welcome.  As Secretary of the Membership Advisory Committee, I enjoy my involvement of the WI at Federation level.  I am also one of the Front Office volunteers.  

Outside of the WI, my husband and I are great fans of brass and military band music.  I am currently Secretary of Dereham Band.
Meg Dorling

Meg Dorling