Relaunched lunch club says farewell to secretary after three decades

Alf Beazeley receives his clock

Alf Beazeley receives his clock after nearly 30 years as secretary to the Probus club - Credit: Probus

A St Ives lunch club for retired business people which came close to being wound up because of the coronavirus pandemic is back on track after a relaunch and was able to hold its traditional Christmas gathering.

The Cromwell Probus Club also took the opportunity of saying farewell to long-serving secretary Alf Beazeley who has retired after nearly three decades in the role.

Members presented Mr Beazeley with an inscribed carriage clock to thank him for his dedication over the years, having been a member of the club for 35 years, 29 of which had been spent as secretary.

The clock was presented to Mr Beazeley by Bill Taylor, an old friend,  together with a card  signed by 40 members handed over by Roger Bruce, who had been the last president and treasurer before Covid-19 forced it to close as a formal entity in March 2020.

Dave McCandless, from the club, said: "However, in June 2021, rather than allow the club to continue to wither and die, the direction it was heading, the club’s former committee was drawn together as a steering group.

"The steering group polled the previous membership and from responses was able to create a new Club of Diners from the old ashes with its first Phoenix meeting of 37 diners being held in August."

He said the group now had a new look with a less formal lunch format, no membership fees and, for the first time, it welcomed women to attend in their own right for the first time.

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Mr McCandless said the lunches were now more appealing for the retired or semi-retired business people  who took part.

He said the club's long-awaited 2021 Christmas event at Slepe Hall had been successful and was held as a lunch with Covid controls in place, rather than as a traditional party and featured a three-course fine-dining meal with Christmas fayre for 32 diners.

Mr McCandless said the lunch was "very special" in marking the retirement of Mr Beazeley with members wanting to show their appreciation for his years of service.

Further information about the club and its activities are available from .