May's Monthly Meeting took place on Wednesday 27 and despite it being a cool May evening it was very well attended. The President, Irene Wilkinson opened the meeting and after business the members were introduced to this month's speaker.
Ian Lloyd was our lively speaker for this evening and he thoroughly entertained the members with his story about his 60 years in egg production. Ian and his family including 3 sons and their partners run Leadgate Farm in Huxley, near Chester. His grandfather Fred Lloyd started the business 60 years ago selling eggs and chickens outside Chester market with 9 year old Ian helping him. This progressed into a retail round in Chester and to date there are 9000 free range chickens producing 1000 dozen eggs daily on the farm.
Ian told us about the three methods of egg production there are, using free range hens, old caged birds and barn hens. We learned free range hens have access to grass, barn hens are free inside the shed and the old caged system (battery) was banned 4 years ago but colony cage birds are now acceptable.
It was interesting to hear about the different classes of eggs and stages of production whereby eggs automatically roll down from where the hens sit straight onto the conveyor belt. After the eggs are graded the information is printed onto the egg without being touched by hand or machinery. We have it on good authority that that although brown eggs are popular there's absolutely no difference between brown and white eggs just different coloured birds.
Ian surprised us all by unexpectedly giving us a rendition of " Myfanwy," "A bunch of Thyme" and "Jeannie with the light brown Hair" during his talk which entertained everyone. He then proceeded to tell one or two funny jokes which were received with much hilarity. After the vote of thanks by Nancy Williams the members were delighted to be informed that everyone had been allocated half a dozen eggs to take home! What a bonus!!
The evening concluded with tea and biscuits and the usual buzz of lots of chatting with friends old and new.
Next month's meeting is on Wednesday 24th June at Tarvin Community Centre at 7 pm and members are invited to dress up in their glad rags and bling for our exciting Glam and Glitz evening to celebrate the WI's Centenary birthday. There will be a bar and food and the speaker will be Eric Newton who will talk about his life as a busker and play music on his saxophone. Non members are welcome to the ticket only evening.
For more information about tickets please contact Irene Wilkinson 01829 740868 or Margaret Matthews 01829 741081
Should some of you wish to take part you will be made very welcome.