On 12 December 1938 35 ladies gathered in the Church Rooms to decide whether or not to form a WI in Old Costessey. Mrs Swindells was in the chair and the Country Organiser was present so she explained what the WI was about. A show of hands agreed to form Old Costessey Women's Institute with meetings to be held on the 2nd Wednesday at 2.30. (The date and time remains today). The first formal meeting was held on 11 January 1939. Tea was served at one penny per cup. The lower age limit was would be 16 years and Jerusalem sung to close the meetings. After one year there was £7.00 in the acount and on 10 January 1940 celebrated their first birthday.
Almost a hundred years later Old Costessey is still a thriving WI with around 45 active members meeting in the Costessey Centre every second Wednesday of the month. Most months we have different speakers who cover a large variety of subjects with a competition linked to the speaker's topic if possible. We have a monthly raffle and a book stall which are both popular with members. We are very interested in the local community and get involved with local fund raising events normally providing tea and refreshments. A different local Charity is nominated by members every year to be 'our' Charity, this last year it has been SANDS and we will organise coffee mornings and garden parties and plant sales to raise money for our nominated Charity and also to raise money for OCWI.
Members Photo 2017
In today's WI members have a choice of a very wide range of events to attend ranging from Nosh and Natter Lunches to sporting activities such as Fit and Fun, Ten Pin Bowling, Federation Garden Party held at Mannington Hall this year and OCWI have their own Darts Team meeting Monday lunchtime in a local public house in the village. We are always looking for new things to entertain our members and regularly go on trips to places of interest and encourage members to make suggestions as to where they would like to go. These visits can be to the Theatre / visits to Stately Homes / Wildlife Centres etc. A visit to Anglesey Abbey and a tour of Norton Dairies are being arranged in the New Year.
We give a very warm welcome to ladies who would like to come along to a meeting and see if they would like to join us.