Charter Reception “Stand up. Speak up. Shut up” – the Mayor of Milton Keynes offers up to the Milton Keynes Confident Speakers group
By Lisa Robinson, VP Public Relations MK Confident Speakers
Milton Keynes – 25 June 2019 – On 21 June the Mayor of Milton Keynes, Councillor Sam Crooks, attended an event to mark the newest public speaking group in Milton Keynes achieving its official status. During the meeting the Mayor quoted J. W. Lowthe, former Speaker of the House of Commons, who once said “There are three golden rules for Parliamentary Speakers: Stand up. Speak up. Shut up.”
The Mayor joined Binal Sawjani, President of Milton Keynes Confident Speakers, plus other club members and guests, to take part in the special meeting. The meeting was then followed by a drinks reception to mark the club being awarded its official status on 31 January 2019.
As part of the meeting guests are invited to do impromptu speaking and Councillor Crooks offered guidance to the group about how important it is to make speeches succinct. Before quoting J. W. Lowthe Councillor Crooks said “Sometimes my speeches are written for me, but they will always have the length written on them and will always have ‘be short’ underlined to remind me of the importance of making sure the key message is heard. Being able to get your message understood is important and Milton Keynes Confident Speakers is a fantastic way of learning the craft of public speaking”.
Club President Binal Sawjani said “I am delighted that we have achieved Charter status so quickly for Milton Keynes Confident Speakers. In the modern world being able to speak confidently is increasingly important, and we have seen great demand to learn these skills since we established the club. At each meeting members evaluate speeches by other members and there’s also impromptu speaking. Whether you are looking to improve your presentations at work or preparing to speak at a wedding, these opportunities provide a fun and safe environment in which to hone your public speaking skills and increase confidence”.
Uniquely in Milton Keynes, Milton Keynes Confident Speakers meets on Friday lunchtime for 1 hour 15 minutes in central Milton Keynes, so it is easy to get to and to fit into a lunch period. Based in the NatWest Accelerator Building, the club is delighted that NatWest is supporting the project by allowing use of their presentation space for meetings.
Area 20 A Year to Remember
By Elizabeth Jordan, DTM
Members and guests from Toastmasters’ clubs in Area 20 (Division H; District 71) and beyond gathered at The Sun hotel (Hitchin, Hertfordshire) on Wednesday 26th June to celebrate the end of the Toastmaster year (2018-2019 with a Gala Dinner and Awards ceremony. The event was hosted by Toastmaster of the Evening, Bradley Peters and Table Topics entertainment was provided by Elizabeth Jordan, DTM.
Area Director, Wojtek Zulja, reflected on the many successes of 2018-2019 during his term of office: All three clubs – Herts Speakers, East Herts and North Herts – achieved Presidents Distinguished status; members reached out to the community in a variety of ways including leading Youth Leadership Programs, Open evenings and attendance at Community Fairs and membership is strong.
In a speech filled with humour, history and hope, After Dinner speaker, Bob Ferguson, DTM, founder of Hertfordshire Speakers and veteran Toastmaster praised Wojtek for reinvigorating the Area 20 Celebration Dinner and hoped it will become an annual event.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of awards to Area 20 club members in the following categories: Most Improved Club Member, Best Club Member and Best Club Officer.
The ‘Changing of The Guard’ ceremony saw the outgoing officers hand-over to the incoming officers, including Division H Director, Steve Campion, who handed over to John Kendall and Area 20 Director, Wojtek Zulja, who handed over to John Allsop, represented by Nina Morozova.
The Area 20 Gala Dinner was as fantastic way to end the Toastmaster year 2018-2019 and look forward to the New Year.