Header Image for Kington St. Michael Village Website

Kington St Michael WI

(Founded 1937. Registered charity no. 1016260)

A member of the National & Wiltshire Federations of WI & the John Aubrey Group

Joint Presidents: Viv Penney, tel. 01249-444741, email svpinusa@msn.com
                            & Karen Hurley, tel. 01249-655677, mob. 07747 518027,
                            email allhurleys@btinternet.com

Secretary: Chris Laskey
Assistant Secretary: Ann Durling
Treasurer: Hilary Holt
Assistant Treasurer: Gill Lasbury

Kington St Michael WI meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 7.30pm in the village hall, when members generally have the opportunity to listen to a speaker. They also take part in skittles and whist leagues, which are county wide. Outings are arranged periodically. We have over 53 members mainly from Kington St Michael, Chippenham and Stanton St Quintin. New members are always welcome; for further details please contact our President.

Newsletters: there is a newsletter each month from the Wiltshire Federation.

Singing for Fun group
Singing for Fun group

(Towards the bottom of this page is a brief history of KSM WI, with photos of the WI Reminiscences booklets from 1987 and 2007. There is also a list of presidents from 1937 to date.)




Meetings & Events


Tuesday 14th May: AGM & Resolutions, followed by a bingo evening.

  Tuesday 11th June: a talk by Chippenham Museum.

Other things to do
Walking Group - meets monthly for walks of 5 - 8 miles.
Book Group - meets on the 4th Thursday of the month.
Skittles Team - plays in the WI League during the winter.
Singing for fun - meets once a month on a Monday.
Ladies that lunch - go out bi-monthly.

If you are interested in any of these actiities, please speak to the President or any committee member

WI News 2023

May: Our Annual General Meeting was held on May 9th; Viv Penney, joint President, chaired the meeting, starting with normal WI business.  Viv mentioned lots of exciting events being planned for the next few months, including a visit to Cadenham Manor gardens on 23rd August.

Plans are well in hand and schedules have been printed for the Village Flower, Produce and Craft Show on Saturday 5th August.  This is a very popular Village event run by the WI and supported by the village; entries were slightly down last year and we are hoping for a return to pre lockdown levels this year.  The schedule is printed in colour for the first time and can be obtained from the village shop or WI Secretary, Christine Laskey.  We are hoping that the children’s classes will be well supported, especially as there are several lovely silver cups to be awarded.  Proceeds from this event go towards supporting the WI’s popular ‘Drinks and Nibbles’ event which is held pre-Christmastime when we host an event for retirees in the village; a very welcome prequel to the Christmas season.

We will again be organising the very popular Afternoon Tea Event in the village hall on Sunday 16th July; tickets on sale very shortly.  Do come along and enjoy a fabulous afternoon tea with delicious sandwiches and stunning homemade cakes and scones.

Following Viv’s update on forthcoming WI events, the AGM was conducted. The existing Officers are to remain in post and two new committee members will be replacing three members stepping down.

WI News 2022

November: There was a good turn out of members to listen to Mike Stone giving a talk on The History of Food in Wiltshire.  Mike gave his talk after the normal WI business had been conducted i.e. birthdays and anniversaries read out, an update on the recent Council Meeting held at Marlborough College and an update on our Tree for the Jubilee.

Christine Laskey, acting President, hosted the event, with Hilary Holt acting as Secretary.  As well as opening with the singing of Jerusalem as usual, members also sang God Save the King. Birthdays and anniversaries were read out and then Christine updated the members on the various events that had taken place since the last meeting in July.

Both the Afternoon Tea Party and Flower & Produce show had been a success, albeit that entry numbers were down for the Flower & Produce Show; not surprising given the unusual hot and dry weather.

The John Aubrey Group Meeting will take place at Kington Langley Village Hall on 8th October, when there will be a talk on British Women in Aviation; contact Hilary for tickets if not already purchased.

The WI skittles league will be starting shortly and more information on this will be forthcoming. Other forthcoming events organised by WI Wiltshire Federation were read out by Nina and information regarding these is available online from WI House. Kington Langley WI is planning a coach trip to Hampton Court sometime in the spring and KSM members are invited to participate.  A good number of members expressed an interest in this outing.

Members were then given a very interesting talk by Amanda Butler of the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation.  Amanda was a very good speaker and obviously passionate about her subject and the vote of thanks was given by Joan.

Members were reminded of other events taking place late summer and early autumn, including Nordic Walking, being arranged by Claire.  There was then a very interesting talk and slide presentation by Jeff Evens, who spoke about the History of the TV Quiz Show. This was truly a trip down Memory Lane, with many members remembering very well the various quiz shows on television in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

June: Our Platinum Jubilee celebrations were held on June 14th in the village hall.
Viv Penney, joint president, hosted the event. Normal WI business was dealt with first and birthdays and anniversaries were read out.  An update was given on the various activities that are on offer over the next couple of months.

The hall had been beautifully decorated by the committee and fun then started. Members were treated to Pimms or soft drinks, and strawberries and cream. The members sang God Save the Queen, just the first and fifth verses, before taking part in the various fun games on offer. There was ‘Pin the tail on the corgi’, a royal quiz, and royal bingo, before the cutting of the cake with more refreshments and flag waving.  There was a competition for Coronation memorabilia, which was well supported by the members and some members were able to reminisce about the actual day and what it meant to them.

Karen Hurley, joint president, conducted the meeting. Normal WI business was dealt with first - birthdays and anniversaries were read out, an update was given on the various activities that had been held over the past month, including the annual meal out, the annual litter pick in the village and the John Aubrey Group meeting. The charities chosen to be supported this year are Dorothy House and the Wiltshire Air Ambulance, both local. Next month’s meeting is Resolutions and this year’s chosen subject is about raising awareness of Women and Girls with ASD, ADHD, who are often not identified, not diagnosed and not supported. This should be an interesting session.

Karen then gave a resume of the various events Wiltshire Federation will be holding over the forthcoming months.  Lots of interesting and varied topics will be covered and members are encouraged to take part.

The speaker, Mr Geoffrey Carr then gave an interesting and informative talk entitled ‘Mysteries and Myths of the Titanic’ with accompany slides.  The talk was fascinating and everyone was riveted, especially given that Geoffrey included information on a local Melksham family who were lost with the Titanic.


~ Litter Pick Success
Litter pickers 12.03.22

Litter collected 12.03.22
(photos courtesy of Jenny Hayne)
The litter pick organised by KSM WI and including the Down Gospel Trust, was a successful exercise, with many bags of litter and rubbish collected, as well as some larger discarded items.  Many thanks go to all those who took part.

~ March’s meeting included the AGM and there was a good attendance of members.
Viv Penney, joint President, conducted the meeting and normal WI business was dealt with first and then birthdays and anniversaries were read out. Members were reminded of the annual meal taking place on Tuesday 29th March at The Salutation Inn.
There was a follow up on the possible planting of a tree for celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and this is still being looked into. 

Viv Penney then gave a resumé of the various events that Wiltshire Federation WI will be holding over the forthcoming months.  Lots of interesting and varied topics will be covered and members were encouraged to take part.

The President’s, Secretary’s and Treasurer’s reports were read out and everyone agreed that, despite a difficult year, KSM WI was in good shape with lots of forthcoming events to look forward to and a very supportive membership.

A new committee has been chosen and the various roles have been allocated. 

Following the AGM, the members were treated to several games of bingo, with a ‘professional’ caller and assistant.  This was very much enjoyed by the members and never has a WI gathering been so quiet!!

February: Once more members of KSM WI was able to hold its monthly meeting in the Village Hall and not via Zoom, which was wonderful.

Karen Hurley, joint president, conducted the meeting. Normal WI business was dealt with first; birthdays and anniversaries were read out and a special cake was presented to long serving member, Barbara Fenner on a very special birthday, with members singing Happy Birthday.

The annual meal out was discussed and this will take place on Tuesday 29th March at the Salutation Inn. Suggestions for celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee were discussed; KSM WI would like to plant a tree and the formalities of doing this will be looked into.   T

Viv Penney then gave a résumé of the various events Wiltshire Federation will be holding over the forthcoming months.  Lots of interesting and varied topics will be covered and members were encouraged to take part.

Members were then treated to a practical corn crafting session by expert Susan Burnett.  This was very enjoyable with some very attractive pieces being constructed, as well as a few not so good which attracted lots of hilarity. Mary Humphries gave Susan a heartfelt vote of thanks for such a fun evening.

WI News 2021

October: October’s meeting was well attended; there were three visitors, one of whom has now joined our WI.
Viv Penney, joint president, conducted the meeting. Members were reminded to park considerately when attending the meetings and to be mindful of the needs of the local residents.  Viv reported that the John Aubrey Group meeting had been a great success, with Stuart Ferramund giving a most interesting presentation.
The Annual Council Meeting of all WIs in Wiltshire will take place, via Zoom, on 16th October. This should be a lively meeting with very interesting speakers.  Nina, our delegate will report back at our next meeting.
The Drinks and Nibbles event usually held in the Village Hall around Christmas time, is under discussion as it is felt it may not be advisible to hold the event under the current conditions.  However, the WI will, as usual, support the village Christmas Fayre on 11th December, and the Food Bank will again be supported, with members bringing items to the Christmas meeting.
Following the usual business, members were then treated to a colourful presentation by Lindsay West on Looking Good and Feeling Fabulous; Lindsay emphasised how important colour is when dressing to look our best.Barbara Fenner gave a very appreciative vote of thanks.

September: At last, the members of KSM WI were able to hold their monthly meeting in the village hall and not via Zoom - this was wonderful.  The meeting incorporated the postponed AGM and was very well attended.
Jenny Hayne, joint president, conducted the meeting. It was the AGM but normal WI business was conducted first. Then the election of the committee and new President took place.  No voting was required for the committee as ten members had opted to stand and as 12 is the maximum number, no further action was required.  Following the establishment of a very viable committee, Viv Penney and Karen Hurley agreed to act as joint Presidents (this WI has found that having two joint presidents works very well and everyone was delighted that this arrangement will continue).
Members were then treated to a live presentation by Anne Macmillan from Medical Detection Dogs.  Anne’s talk was illustrated with slides and was a very interesting insight into the work of these highly trained dogs. These dogs, with their unique sense of smell, can detect the pre-onset of some illnesses long before any symptoms manifest themselves. Other detection dogs can be a life-line for someone with an illness who needs notification that an incident is about to happen, such as type 1 diabetes. The dogs can then warn their owners, thus enabling the dog owner to live a fairly normal life.  However, there is a tremendous cost involved in training these dogs.
Delcia Fussell gave a heartfelt vote of thanks to Anne.

May: KSM WI held its annual resolutions monthly meeting for May via zoom, conducted by Jenny Hayne, joint president.
Members were reminded that the Annual NFWI meeting will take place on June 8th; this is normally a very large gathering of members and should be taking place in the Royal Albert Hall but because of the times, it will be zoomed to members. There will be a number of interesting speakers, including Dame Cressida Dick and Sophie, The Countess of Wessex.
Nina Beese presented the ‘resolution’, a call to members of the WI to help increase the awareness of the subtle signs of ovarian cancer, with slides to help with facts and figures. The resolution was discussed by members and adopted.  Members were then treated to an online quiz prepared by Rosemarie Johnson, which was highly enjoyable.

KSM WI held March’s monthly meeting via zoom, with approximately 32 members taking part.
Jenny Hayne, joint president, conducted the meeting and reminded members that they should have been holding the AGM, but this has now been postponed until September.  The joint presidents will stay in office until then, when a new president will be needed to take over.  In the meantime, three new committee members have been co-opted and the annual budget report has been produced.
The committee was congratulated on arranging a Zoom tour of Cambridge last month, which was given by Murray Jacobs. 
Tony Griffith, a member of the Inner Magic Circle, gave a very entertaining demonstration of card tricks along with some very humorous  anecdotes, which was greatly enjoyed by the members and Fiona Welch gave him a heartfelt vote of thanks.

February: KSM WI held February’s monthly meeting via zoom, with approximately 34 members taking part.
Rosemarie Johnson, joint president, conducted and organised the meeting, following the usual format, although we have not yet resumed the singing of Jerusalem!
Minutes of January’s meeting were agreed will be signed at a later date, then Matters Arising were discussed. The President reminded members that March’s meeting will be the AGM, although, of course, not in its usual format.  Members will shortly be receiving the ‘Newsletter’ now Rosemarie has enough articles; please keep them coming.
Following the business side of the meeting, Sue Essex, the speaker, gave a wonderful talk on her time as a House Mother in India.  This was accompanied by lovely photos of her stay with the children at Pestalozzi World, a charity that helps poor but bright children from India, Nepal, and other regions in the area, prepare for secondary school, something that would not happen without the charity. At the end of the talk Sue gave a quick resume of the many successes the children have achieved and many of them are now working in prestigious jobs around the world.
Karen Hurley gave the vote of thanks. 

January: Just what was needed on a dreary January evening, speaker, Paul Judd, describing how we could grow beautiful bee-loving wildflowers in our village. He supports groups, communities and councils planting on verges and roundabouts, to create wildlife-friendly planting schemes throughout the UK and particularly in Devizes in our area.

Jenny Hayne presided over the Meeting held via Zoom, with a record number of members joining in.  Members raised £218 for Wiltshire MIND in lieu of exchanging Christmas cards, and a letter of thanks has been received.

Rosemarie Johnson requested more articles for our KSMWI Newsletter.
The John Aubrey Group meeting is planned for the April 28 via Zoom and forthcoming WFWI events were announced, and members were encouraged to support these, which would all be held via Zoom.

New committee members are required for the coming year, to be elected at the Annual Meeting in March.  Dates were given for annual events, which we will hopefully be able to hold in the future. 

WI News 2020

November: KSM WI held November’s meeting via zoom, with approximately 27 members joining in, including a new member and three members joining from the now closed All Angels.  An invitation had been extended to Hullavington WI and one member joined to listen to the speaker, after the business part of the meeting.

Rosemarie Johnson, joint president, conducted and organised the meeting. The meeting followed the usual WI format although we are still to resume the singing of Jerusalem!

Firstly, minutes of the last meeting held on 13th October were signed and matters arising discussed. It had been hoped that some informal events with up to six attendees could be arranged for WI members, possibly afternoon tea, but in the light of the new lockdown this has had to go on hold!

Various WI business matters and forthcoming events (all to be held via Zoom) were discussed. Members have been delighted to receive the newsletter, beautifully put together by Rosemarie, who requested more articles.

It was agreed, that once again we would help the Foodbank this Christmas, however, this year will be slightly different.  Food banks have been well supported during the pandemic and have requested that we donate more luxury items i.e. treats suitable for the Christmas hampers which they are putting together.  Rosemarie gave out a list of drop off points and Kay Sambell is again taking donations in lieu of Christmas cards, and members have the details for their donation.

Following the business side of the meeting, Chris Dunn from Calne gave a talk about his work as in Illustrator.  Chris produced the most wonderful slides showing his work and talked about his career to date, with examples of some of the wonderful books he has been asked to illustrate.

Louise Williams gave the vote of thanks.

October: October’s meeting was held via zoom; which worked very well once again, with around 22 members taking part.

Rosemarie Johnson, joint president, conducted and organised the meeting. The meeting followed the usual WI format although we are yet to resume the singing of Jerusalem!

Firstly, minutes of the last meeting held on 8th of September were signed and matters arising discussed. It is hoped, following the success of the recent socially distanced picnic that some informal events with up to six attendees can be arranged for WI members.

The recent John Aubrey Group meeting was very entertaining and the ‘not the usual’ annual council meeting is going ahead this month via zoom. A number of KSM WI members zoomed/will zoom in to both these events.

All WI members who were on the call agreed that we will once again undertake a Christmas collection for the local foodbank with drop off points in the village and Chippenham.

Following the business side of the meeting, Bob Rogers gave a talk, via zoom, to WI members. The subject was ‘Islands on the Edge’ which was a fascinating presentation on the Outer Hebrides which everyone enjoyed and have added to their places to visit when circumstances allow!

September: For the first time since lockdown the members of KSM WI held a meeting.  To facilitate this unique event the meeting was held via Zoom. This worked very well and approximately 15 member “zoomed” in.

Jenny Hayne, joint President, conducted the meeting which was organised on zoom by Rosemarie Johnson (joint President). An agenda had been previously emailed to members and so the meeting followed the usual WI format.
Firstly there was congratulations on birthdays and anniversaries, minutes of the last normal meeting held on 10th March were signed and matters arising were discussed - these were mostly the cancellation of events that were in the pipeline.

However, some WI events, such as the Annual Council Meeting and the John Aubrey Group Meeting will go ahead, albeit via Zoom (trust the WI to move with times!).  Calendars and diaries have been ordered, as per normal, and the NFWI Newsletter is to return to normal publication in October.

Norma was thanked for hosting the recent outdoor, socially distanced picnic; it was a shame about the weather. Rosemarie was given a warm vote of thanks for producing the KSM WI Newsletter; this has been a delightful way of keeping in touch, full of interesting and informative information from our ladies.

Following the business side of the meeting, Sue Maddick from Hardenhuish WI, gave a talk, via Zoom to the members. This worked very well and the members found Sue’s talk on the history of the bra both funny and informative.

At January’s meeting, members were warmly congratulated for their generous donations to the Food Bank at the December meeting.  Malmesbury Food Bank was overwhelmed by the collection and gave its heartfelt thanks.

Following business and an update on skittles matches, members were treated to an interesting and informative talk by Bernard Purrier, from the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Trust.  An interesting fact is that smallest and rarest marine dolphins, the Hector and Mauis, are very near extinction off the coast of New Zealand; commercial and recreational fishing is decimating these species and only one fifth of their habitat is protected.


WI News 2017 - 2019
News, events and photos from 2017 -2019

WI News 2016

News, events and photos from 2016

WI News 2015
News, events and photos from 2015

WI News 2014
News, events and photos from 2014

WI News 2013
News, events and photos from 2013

WI News 2012
News, events and photos from 2012

WI News 2011
News, events and photos from 2011

WI News 2010
News, events and photos from 2010

WI News 2009
News, events and photos from 2009

WI News 2008
News, events and photos from 2008



Kington St. Michael WI was established on 3rd December 1937; a branch of the National Federation of Women's Institutes which is the largest voluntary women's organisation in the UK. This seeks to offer women the opportunity to develop interests and skills in a wide range of subjects including sport, craft and science. It also takes an interest in issues of the day, which affect us all on a local, national and international level - but above all it provides an environment of fun and friendship.

As part of a wider organisation there is the opportunity for members to take part in events further field and to attend courses at Denman College, the WI's own educational centre in Oxfordshire.

New members and visitors are made most welcome. For more information contact the current President (see top of page).

WI reminiscences booklets
(Illustration by the late Kathy Kirby & photo by Linda Durno.
Thank you to Jenny Hayne for providing the above booklets.)

Presidents from 1937 to date (some serving several times)

1937 - 1987
Mrs Thompson
Mrs Rawlings
Mrs Evans
Mrs Adams
Mrs Lee
Mrs Summers
Mrs Vincent
Mrs Kathy Kirby
Mrs Higgins
Mrs Taylor
Mrs Lyn Vaughan
Mrs Barbara Fenner
Mrs Humphrys
Mrs Jenny Hayne
Mrs Janet Elms
Mrs Margaretta Strickland

1987 to date (with thanks to Janet Elms)

1988/89: Margaretta Strickland
1989/90: Mary Humphreys
1990/91: Mary Humphries
1991/92: Kay Sambell
1992/93: Kay Sambell
1993/94: Joan Jackson
1994/95: Joan Jackson
1995/96: Joan Jackson
1996/97: Barbara Fenner
1997/98: Barbara Fenner
1998/99: Barbara Fenner
2001/02: Kay Sambell
2002/03: Mary Humphreys & Janet Elms
2003/04: Janet Elms
2005/06: Janet Elms
2006/07: Kay Sambell
2008/09: Kay Sambell
2009/10: Viv Penney
2010/11: Viv Penney
2011/12: Viv Penney
2012/13: Jenny Hayne
2013/14: Jenny Hayne
2014/15: Jenny Hayne
2015/16: Kay Sambell
2016/17: Nina Rack
2016/17: Nina Beese
2017/18: Nina Beese
2018/19: Jenny Hayne & Rosemarie Johnson (joint presidents).
2019/20: Jenny Hayne & Rosemarie Johnson (joint presidents).
2020/21 (March - September): Jenny Hayne & Rosemarie Johnson
                                                 (joint presidents).
2021/22 (September 2021 onwards): Viv Penney & Karen Hurley
                                                            (joint presidents)    
2022/23: Viv Penney & Karen Hurley (joint presidents)                      

The first Flower & Produce Show was staged in 1974.

Previous WI logo

The WI movement was founded in 1897 in Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada, by Adelaide Hoodless, a farmer's wife. Having lost a child through, as she thought, her lack of knowledge of household skills and hygiene, she realised that there were other women in the same position who had the will to learn and so the WI movement was born.

The first WI in the UK was started in Lllanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, Angelsey, in 1915. The 90th Anniversary of the formation of the National Federation of Womens' Institutes was celebrated in 2005. Nationally, there are 230,000 members who have the opportunity to enjoy friendship, learn new skills and broaden their interests, and ,as a corporate body influence local, national and international affairs.

In 2009 the Wiltshire Federation of Womens' Institutes celebrated its 90th Anniversary.