Get the lowdown!

STANHOE & BARWICK WI : 1919 - 2019, and counting!

Based in what were originally two thriving agricultural villages, Stanhoe & Barwick WI has changed significantly over the 100 years of its existence. You can now find us on Facebook and Instagram.

The village of Barwick has disappeared, leaving only a farm with a few cottages, with Stanhoe having a population of less than 190. With these changes, the lack of work in the locality and the consequent changes in the age profile, came a reduction in membership.


On the Patio

On the patio – our annual ‘garden meeting’

Members’ visit to Hindringham Hall


We have managed to reverse this trend, and membership, currently at 29, is still increasing – largely due to us attracting new members from adjacent villages.

We have always been active and enthusiastic, and partly because of the relative isolation of the village (which lacks a shop, a school or a bus service), members are always happy to go out and about on visits.

In common with other WIs, we hold a monthly meeting with a speaker, and have enjoyed varied and fascinating topics and demonstrations. A few times each year we have meetings open to everyone – including partners and friends -  which are always well supported.

Hats – just for fun!

Over recent years, we have visited many houses, gardens and museums open to the public; had ‘retail therapy’ trips; monthly meetings are sometimes followed by visits to places that our speakers have talked about; we have undertaken ‘treasure hunts’ finding out more about, and seeing parts of, villages already somewhat familiar to us; we have been on country walks, and train and bus trips; to the renowned Thursford Christmas show and other theatre visits; we have had guided tours of RAF Marham, the National Construction College, and other local institutions; we have at least four lunches each year, and an afternoon tea most months.

In addition, we occasionally organise our own local workshops, usually to introduce our members to some new craft or skill which one or more of us has learned, like quilling, making gift boxes, making paper flowers, and making silver clay jewellery – and, of course, we arrange tuition from external tutors in order to learn new things – making resin sculptures, fused glass, stained glass ornaments, wire and bead bowls, and much more.

Another activity of which we are proud is our annual fundraising event for a local charity, and in recent years we have supported the East Anglian Childrens’ Hospice, Tapping House Hospice, Norfolk Accident Rescue Service, the Purfleet Trust, the Big C,  Baby Basics, a local women's refuge and the charitable trust which runs Stanhoe Reading Room where we hold our meetings, among many others.

Funds have been raised in a number of ways, including a Murder Mystery acted by members, filling empty ‘Smarties’ tubes with coins, visits to the Royal Stud at Sandringham in return for donations, a Hallowe’en fish and chip supper with a quiz……

…… and inviting people to donate in support of a 12 hour singing challenge by four of our members.

We arrange a successful  cake stall in Stanhoe to raise funds for our own WI.