South Peninsula Handcraft Centre turns 50

Past and present chairwomen, from left, are, current chairwoman Ursula van Dijk, 2013 chairwoman Maryna Stotesbury, 2017 chairwoman Jacqueline Meusel, 1981 chairwoman Tricia Elvin-Jensen, 2008 chairwoman Lynne Laver and 2005 chairwoman Yvonne Maxwell.

The South Peninsula Handcraft Centre celebrated its 50th anniversary at the Fish Hoek civic centre, on Thursday June 30.

Past and present members were treated to some on-stage entertainment followed by tea and snacks.

Ursula van Dijk, who was recently re-elected chairwoman of the club, said she had joined it to meet new people after moving to Fish Hoek five years ago.

Originally called the South Peninsula Business and Professional Women’s Club, it had grown from 11 members to more than 170 members today, she said.

Jacqueline Meusel, who was the chairwoman in 2017, said she had joined the club in 2011, and it was the friendships and camaraderie that made it so special.

“The ladies are happy to teach you new skills, and it is so much fun,” she said.

Sadie Juter was the first chairwoman and meetings were held at the old Fish Hoek library on Main Road.

In 1974, the club changed its name to the South Peninsula Handcraft Centre and moved its meeting to the newly built civic centre, where meetings are still held today.

Ms Van Dijk said the club had held 2 250 meetings during its 50 years of existence.

The club teaches a wide range of crafts, including embroidery, knitting, paper crafts and beading and it holds an exhibition every second year. It also makes blankets, clothes, and other items for those in need.

“Members believe in giving back to the communities in which they live and have found crafts to be a wonderful source of therapy to those in need,” Ms van Dijk said.

A former member, Jenny Carthew, said she had been part of the club for many years but had had to give it up when she moved to Somerset West.

“I taught beading and copied a pattern from one of my grandmother’s doilies that I used in my lessons,” she said.

The club meets every Thursday, between 9am and noon, in the Fish Hoek civic centre and welcomes old and new members. All skill levels, from beginner to advanced, are welcome.

For more information about the club, call Dianne Osborne at 072 141 7003.

From left, are Leona McPherson, Gail John, and Elaine Keene-Young.
Members of the South Peninsula Handcraft Centre enjoy tea and snacks during the club’s 50th anniversary.
On-stage entertainment by some of the South Peninsula Handcraft Centre members.
Jenny Carthew enjoying a glass of orange juice.