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Welcome to our Spring 2022 update

It has been so great to be back out in the community. Read on to find out what we have been up to in and around Romsey. Youth Speaks - Pleased to say Salisbury Rotary invited us (Rotary Club of Romsey Test) to attend their group 5 event on February 17that Bishops Wordsworth School. Two teams, one from Mountbatten and one from Romsey attended. There was a high standard of debating between the teams. Unfortunately both teams failed to qualify for the next round but said that they had benefitted from the experience and would like to be involved again next year.

On Wednesday 16th March, the Rotary Club of Romsey Test hosted four Hampshire schools to a local staging of the Rotary Club of GB&I National Inter School Technology Tournament. 🏆

The challenge was to design and build a gravity powered vehicle that could run along a 1 1/2 metre long test track. The event was a great success with a number of the models proving to be very effective. Everybody was engaged with the task and thoroughly enjoyed the day. All the pupil feedback forms stated that they wanted to come back next year. 🤩

The intermediate KS4 tournament was won by the Mountbatten School and the runner-ups were Bitterne Park School. The Foundation KS3 tournament was won by Bitterne Park School and the runner-ups were Hamble School.

Civic Reception at Romsey Town Hall Roger Shepherd, President of the Rotary Club of Romsey Test was invited on Thursday 17 March, together with Club Secretary Jon Livingstone.

The event was to recognise and acknowledge Countess Mountbatten’s contribution to charitable events and organisations in the town.

Next year’s Mayor of Romsey, Neil Gwynne, read a message on behalf of Romsey Mayor Karen Dunleavey, who was unable to attend, and the Countess responded with her own appreciation.

It was an enjoyable occasion and for Roger and Jon, an opportunity to talk with representatives of the other charities and voluntary organisations and Romsey Councillors also present.

Countess Mountbatten is an Honorary Member of the Rotary Club of Romsey Test. The Countess mentioned the Rotary Relay Marathon organised annually by Romsey Rotary [ ] which runs around a circuit within the grounds of Broadlands in her response.

The picture below shows Countess Mountbatten talking with Councillor Neil Gwynne.’

Rotary Club of Romsey Test have had some great speakers over the last few months

Ade Summers

Ade leads outward bound expeditions to mountain regions of the Himalayas and other remote areas. His talk was about the route along the Zanskar River, which is a major tributary of the Indus River, in northern India.

Ade raises funds for a school he supports in the Hindu Kush Mountains which is part of the Ayub Hamdard foundation. Read more here....

Lauren Denham, Baby Necessities

Based in Basepoint in Romsey are a baby bank providing new and pre-loved items to families in need.They work on a referral basis and provide items for both children and parents.We will continue to work closely with the charity and become involved in future projects. Check out their Facebook page. They put up a wish-list every Wednesday.

Linda Bate, Finance and Development Manager of Youth in Romsey, provided Romsey Test Rotary with an insight into the valuable work carried out by YIR. The call on their services has increased during the pandemic, but we trust that with Covid (hopefully) receding, young people will be able to return to less stressful lives.

We also presented them with a cheque for over £1,600 to help YIR continue their worthwhile work with young people.

For more information on Youth in Romsey, visit END POLIO NOW!! Although organised by the Romsey Test club, this is a Rotary in Romsey undertaking with help from the Romsey club, particularly in manning the displays.

We are very lucky in having the support of Sir Harold Hillier Gardens in our endeavours to eradicate polio throughout the world. They assisted us originally in planting over 250,000 purple crocuses, and each year allow us to set up in the entrance to the gardens to provide information and for us to accept donations from anyone wishing to support us. This year we were fortunate in that it was school half term, so many families were visiting the lovely gardens.

The event is organised by Rtn Stewart Mitchell from the Romsey Test club, and this year was planned to run from the 21st to 26th February. Unfortunately, storms Dudley and Eunice were unkind to the gardens, and they had to be closed on the 21st and 22nd to clear up damage caused by the storms. As a result, our fundraising effort was curtailed, and took place only on the 23rd to 26th February.

We have two displays, and each day they were manned from 11.00am to 3.00pm in two sessions. Each session has a total of four people manning the displays to provide information about Rotary’s involvement and to accept donations. The move away from cash, particularly as a result of the pandemic, caused some problems, but we all made valiant efforts to come to terms with the SumUp contactless payment system.

The photographs show our banner on the approach to the Sir Harold Hillier Gardens entrance, some of the crocuses which were in full bloom, and some of our willing helpers.

Baby Necessities

Donated gifts for Christmas Cracker Appeal along with £300 to be used for emergency situations over the christmas period.

Community Pantry

We donated chocolates, biscuits and mince pies along with £500 to help towards purchasing fresh produce for christmas hampers

After a pandemic-induced hiatus of two years, the Barratt Homes Romsey Relay Marathon will be back on Sunday 1st May, 2022 and is now in its seventh year. This event is hosted by The Rotary Club of Romsey with the organizing committee drawn from both Romsey clubs thereby making it a truly ‘Rotary in Romsey’ event.

For those who don’t know about the Relay Marathon, teams of 10 runners together run a complete marathon of 26 miles with each runner completing two laps of a track around the beautiful Broadlands estate of 1.3 miles. As far as we know, an event of this type is unique in the UK, the attraction being that it allows runners of all abilities to participate in the challenge of running a complete marathon.

The ethos of the event is to provide a fun family day so teams are encouraged to bring a gazebo and have a picnic in a lovely setting with entertainment such as face painting and music being provided.

This year, we are adding a ‘charity fair’ where charities (many of whom have running teams) have stalls to sell items for their charity or for publicity purposes only.

In 2019 (the last year that the Marathon was staged) we had over 175 teams of 10 runners with over 4,000 visitors to the site when friends and family are included. At the time of writing 82 teams have registered which is pleasing considering that companies, schools and the NHS, from which many of our previous teams came, are still recovering from the effects of Covid.

We are extremely grateful to our amazing sponsors which include Barratt homes as the main sponsor and a dozen smaller local businesses. Their generosity means that costs of staging the event are paid by sponsors with team entry fees going to the Rotary Trust Fund. Many teams will also be raising money for their own charities, in past years we estimate that this has exceeded £100,000.

We look forward to the continuing support on the weekend of the event from members of both Romsey Rotary clubs working together to make it a great ‘Rotary in Romsey’ event. For more information or to sign up please visit

Walk The Test Way, Sunday , September 25, 2022

The Walk started in 2004 and over the years has been our major fund raising activity, to date the Walk has raised in excess of £1m. With on average each year over 400 walkers taking part, it has also become an important part of local fund raising activity with many charities taking an active role every year. We are hopeing to build on the local charity connections and if you would like to get involved or find out more please get in touch.

Progress is well under way for Walk The Test Way 2022, registration team have been busy updating the web page and should be ready to go live on April 1st

With registrations ready to be go live May 1.

The marshals on the walk play a major role in the success of the event, every year we receive letters of thanks for the excellent support that the marshals give the walkers.


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