Emma Duke, a driftwood artist, combined Agatha Christie, I K Brunel, severe weather and shipworms in her talk to Wellington WI group, writes Judith Smith. There are three main sources – fallen trees, shipwrecks and boatyards – and each of these provides a different type of driftwood. We were able to handle a selection of pieces found by Emma on her trips to the coast, and were fascinated by their shape and texture.
Shipwreck wood brings the possibility of unwanted guests, as Agatha Christie found out when she brought back a sea chest from a trip to India, only to hear munching sounds, which were eventually discovered to be made by several shipworm maggots! Brunel’s studies of shipworms enabled him to develop the shield for the mobile furnace used in building a tunnel under the Thames. We will never look at driftwood in the same way again.
Many of our interest groups are continuing to meet during the summer, members of both the writing groups, the book group and craft group maintaining their momentum. Plans for our WI centenary celebration meeting and a joint event with other local WIs in September were discussed, and our Carol service and Christmas party in December are keenly anticipated.
At our next meeting on 17 September the Blackdown Hills Chorus will provide the entertainment, and a member of staff from the Somerset Archive will be talking to us about how the lives of women in Somerset have changed in the century since the WI was founded. The meeting will take place at the Beambridge Inn, starting at 7.30pm, and guests are very welcome, so please come and join us.