Thursday June 7th 2018 - Weinproebe

A thoroughly entertaining evening with our popular host Jim Gillespie


Members and Guests enjoyed a sumptuous Buffet,

followed by the tasting of 6 different wines


Germany, Austria and Romania

under the expert tuition of Jim,

who also gave us tips on storage of wine 

and dome of the do's and don'ts! 


Thursday May 3rd  2018 - VW-KäferDrive

The Evening started with a short bi-lingual talk on the origins of the VW Beetle,

narrated by Bryan Roe, using his experience working for Bentley Motors under Volkswagen ownership 

This was followed by a Beetle Drive with a twist!

You’ve no doubt heard of the Volkswagen Beetle, and probably heard of Beetle Drives. 

 In our  VW-KäferDrive game,  the two were combined by drawing Käfer car parts instead of a beetle.

A simple model drawing and the relevant vocabulary were provided and produced a totally novel and unique experience enjoyed by all. There were prizes for the top 3 places, but also a prize for the best likeness drawing of Der Kafer, judged by Bryan.


There were some unusual Beetle themed offering provided for refreshments, particularly one made by Irmgard.


A really good evening was enjoyed by all and we may well repeat it in the future..



The AGM business was conducted without any issues. The Committee was re-elected with the exception of Michael Follentfant who stepped down as Secretary and was replaced by Insa Winkelbrand.


After the refreshments, we were treated to a very interesting video presentation by Simon Johr, in which 'a young Simon' was interviewing his Grandfather some years ago.


There were very interesting snippets about his grandfather's experiences in WWII.



ON  7TH JUNE 2018


Drawn to the pots of Grete Marks 

The pictures below tell the story: a pot or vase by German Bauhaus ceramicist Grete Marks, whose life we investigated, was the starting point for drawing exercises (using German Staedler pencils) guided by our expert and encouraging art tutor Kirsty Hicks, who is Head of Creative Arts at Thistley Hough Academy, Newcastle-under-Lyme.


Folks produced some amazing drawings - huge thanks to Kirstie for helping discover so much hidden talent! It was a relaxing activity, too!



4TH MAY 2017






Members enjoyed an interesting evening with videos about the German tradition of Spargel - Asparagus - some factual, some comical.


The Buffet contained a number of Spargel dishes prepared by members.


6TH APRIL 2017

AGM & Köln- Hin und Zurück



Our April 6th meeting was in two parts


First  our  Annual General Meeting with reports on Club finances, membership, discussions on plans for future meetings and outings and the Club’s general objectives.

All current Committee Members agreed to stand for another year, a programme of events was proposed, discussed and agreed - this can be seen on the Events page of the website.

Following the AGM, we had a short break for a buffet and prize draw


Then one of our members -  Walter Bridge - gave a talk - ‘Köln: hin und zurück’ -were he elaborated on the effects - both serious and humorous - of German 20th century history on his German mother’s family, Familie Klaus.


There were many interesting facets to the family tale, some tinged with sadness, but it was thoroughly enjoyed by all present.







Attended by nearly 50 members and guests,

we enjoyed a very interesting and enjoyable evening of wine tasting

of German & Austrian Wines

hosted by Jim Gillespie













A sample of the wares for tasting











Jim introducing the evening with the 6 different Wines available at the tasting


















Our extensive Buffet to go with the Wine Tasting




A very interesting evening started with a pictorial quiz which ran in the background - identify the pictures and in which country - Germany, Austria or Switzerland - they were located.


Then the real stuff, very competitive teams vied with each other to figure out Company Logos, German Sports people, famous people from past and present and a variety of other brain numbing questions!


Then the finale - the 2 sides of the table lined up against each other to work out answers to intriguing questions. Irmgard was the star questioner here with some incredible phrases which baffled everyone!







5TH JANUARY 2017   Geheimpakete (Mystery Parcels


At our first meeting after Christmas/New Year, we again played Geheimpakete (Mystery Parcels) but this time with a German connection. We were also joined by 2 prospective new members from out of the area


Some really interesting disguised objects turned up, which completely fooled some but not all of us.

It is all a question of asking the right questions in the right order!



After the break, Michael  showed us how to play his favourite family game of ‘Liar Dice’ (in German and English.). This led to some hilarious situations as contestants tried to master bluff and double or even triple bluff!


Plenty of leftover  Festive goodies appeared on the food table all which were consumed.


An enjoyable night was had by all






On our Advent Evening, we all made a paper Angel and Waffle Star

this star was quite challenging!


The our Rev Terry Bloor told us the history of the Herrnhuter Stars.


After the buffet with Stollen, Lebkuchen, other specialities and

home-baked Plaetzchen from Berlin, we again sang from

the Christmas Song Book.


And at the end, we had a musical surprise!

The World Premiere of an Advent song

composed for our Club by

Club Friend Reto Stadelmann 


Froehliche Weihnachten zum alles Mitgleider und Freunden




Bei unserem Adventabend am 1. Dezember haben wir

einen Engel und einen Waffelstern gebastelt.


Dann hat uns Rev. Terry Bloor über dieGeschichte des Herrnhuter Sterns erzählt.


Nach dem Büffet mit Stollen,Lebkuchen, Spekulatius

und hausgebackene Plätzchen aus Berlin ging es mit dem Singen

von beliebten Weihnachtsliedern weiter.


Und zum Schluss eine musikalische Überraschung: die Weltpremiere eines eigens für unseren Club komponierten Adventslied vom Komponisten und Clubfreund Reto Stadelmann.











A small group of members were presented by Bryan

with some examples of Slow German.


(Information courtesy of


We listened to and reviewed Podcast no 129 - Der Fuehrerschein, commenting that it was about the right pace for learners and well enunciated.

The recommended technique is to listen to the audio first to get used to the pace, then repeat and follow with the available text.


Then we had a interesting discussion on the differences between the German and UK systems of people learning to drive and taking their tests.


Texts for other podcasts on Margarete Steiff and Die Weisswurst were made available to members


Another method of learning, but more aligned to improving conversational skills was discussed by Bryan following him recently joining a Deutschsprachige Group which meets fortnightly in a cafe in Chester on a Saturday between 1100 and 1300. So the atmosphere is quite informal and convivial.


This group has a wide mixture of ability with both English and natural Germans attending, but newcomers and those only just learning the art of conversation in a foreign language are well supported by the more experienced members.


See for more information.


Bryan conclude the evening with his experience of using German on a recent walking holiday in Croatia




So ein schöner Abend! Five of us (and two dogs) had a lovely evening at Trentham Gardens. Three of us braved the barefoot walk picking our way over gravel, grit, pebbles and coals (which thankfully were’nt hot). We waded through mud and, in a nice Potteries touch, clay slip, as in the photo. After washing our tingling tootsies, we strolled round the show gardens, the Italian gardens and the floral maze on a lovely balmy evening. We rounded things off with a meal in Joe's Kitchen in Trentham Village, where they offer dogs free treats!
Sadly Bryan couldn't make it due to delays returning from Hanley after walking 11.5 miles on The Two Saints Way - I would have relished the barefoot trek and the mudbath at the end to cool off my feet!!















7th July 2016 - GRILL ABEND

Unser Grillabend war ein Erfolg! We had 20 people (including two new German visitors) came along to enjoy echte deutsche Bratwürste imported by Clive and Jane and expertly cooked by Grillmeister Bryan. Thanks to all for bringing food to go with them, especially Hannelore for her Kartoffelsalat and Bryan for his rhubarb and ginger cake! Having wet our whistles with Erdinger Weißbier or Warsteiner we joined Christine and singer/guitarist Sally Mitchell in a few German and English drinking songs. Where else could you follow 'Münchener Hofbräuhaus' with 'I belong to Glasgow'? The only downside was Germany losing 2:0 to France in the Euro 2016 semi-finals. Shall we have another Grillabend sometime?








Bjoern, Kati and Leon tucking into

Bier und Bratwürste.


























June 25th 2016











We sailed on a dazzle boat and sat on a torpedo! Seven of us went on the June 25th Liverpool trip, taking the ferry to Birkenhead to visit the U-Boat Story. Here, we peered into the sliced-up sections of U-534, spotting fuel pipes, switches, cables and the odd wellington boot still lying about. The fascinating exhibition of salvaged items ranged from charts, reports and navigation equipment to medical equipment and crockery down to cards and board games. Pat was a dab hand at cracking the Enigma code game! Video interviews with crew members gave you a real feel for life on board - most signed up for the rations!


Our invaluable guide Bryan, who hails from the Wirral, then suggested an impromptu visit to Birkenhead Priory. It’s just 10 minutes’ walk along the river bank and bang next door to the Cammell Laird shipyard. Here’s where the monks operated the first Mersey Ferry (from 1318). From the top of its restored tower you get the prime view back to Liverpool with the Liver Building, two cathedrals and all. There was just time for a quick look round the Priory’s graveyard, crypt and working chapel – but I’ll definitely make a return visit.


Then back on the ferry, whose brightly coloured ‘dazzle’ camouflage was designed to protect boats from WW1 submarine attacks. We split up for a couple of free hours in Liverpool, variously visiting the Maritime Museum, the Albert Dock, the Liverpool Tate and the Cultural Quarter, before re-gathering for an early doors session at the Liverpool Bierkeller.


This was not a good idea!! Even at 5 pm, it was so raucous you couldn’t hear yourself speak. And after I’d ordered two of ‘U-Boat’ subs, they’d run out of sausages. Na sowas! Luckily, they chucked us all out an hour later – but at least we’d stuck to the programme.


We weren’t a big party, but we still had a fun day out together and the weather was mostly kind. Herzlichen Dank to those who came along, especially to Bryan, who was so informative about the Merseyside buildings (and the shipping on the river). Thanks also to Clive and Jane, who had the idea for the trip in the first place.


If you’ve got an idea for other Germanically-linked places we could visit within striking distance of Stoke-on-Trent, please let us know!

Christine, 26.6.16






The rowdy Bierkeller in Liverpool One





The Dazzle Boat - our transport back to the Pier Head to visit the Tate, Maritime Museum and other attractions





MS SAGA, a 61,000 tonne Crude Oil tanker which had just left the Tranmere Oil Terminal, next to Cammell Laird. It had just delivered over 60.000 tones of crude oil. 


As one wag (typically a scouser) commented, be careful next time you book a holiday with SAGA!



The view from the Steeple of the Priory

May 5th 2016


This was our Bilingual Games Evening


We started with Chinese Whispers (Stille Post) in both languages and the usual 'send 3 and 4 pence we are going to a dance' interpretations arose!! Then we had a ‘Find someone who has done certain activities or other - this required some intuition and personal knowledge of people’, but it was a great way to talk to people with whom you have never talked before, followed by an alternative form of Snakes and ladders (Schlangen und Leiter), we all kept falling down!  We spent so much time on these that we didn't manage to get to the Scrabble in German and English. 


A thoroughly enjoyable evening was had by all!!




News from recent Committee Meeting


Following the successful 2016 AGM, the newly elected Committee met on 15th April 2016.


The Meetings Programme up to September 2016 was confirmed and can be seen on the Events Page of the website, a number of topics were 'pencilled-in' up to the 2017 AGM, these will be confirmed at the next Committee Meeting on 15th June 2016.


Christine will lead a 4/5 mile walk at Cannock Chase on 14th August 2016


Planning is in place for a Trip to The U-Boat Story & other attractions around the Liverpool Waterfront, more details when the timings and costing have been confirmed.


The Treasurer has produced a new Mandate for Members to complete to pay their current and future Membership fee. The Clubs Bank Details are included for those members who would like to pay by Bank Transfer/Standing Order. This Mandate will be added to the Website.


Walter Bridge will now maintain the Membership List and handle Membership enquiries




AGM April 2016 - Report


Whilst we had a relatively low turnout for the Meeting, a lot of progress was made. The Current interim officers presented their reports, which were accepted by those attending. These officers formally presented themselves for election and they were unanimously elected.


The Chairperson then presented proposals for a wide variety of topics for Meetings and Outings, most of which were generally accepted.


Proposed events of great interest were a Trip to The U-Boat Experience at Woodside Ferry & Maritime Museum at Liverpool, a German Barbeque and the Barefoot Walk at Trentham - the full programme will be formally clarified at the forthcoming Committee Meeting on 12th April.


A proposal that trips for members should be free was accepted.


After the Meeting, participants enjoyed a small buffet and the usual raffle. 




March 6th 2016 was our Weinprobe Event which was very well attended


We were educated by our host Jim Gillespie in the art of Wine Tasting in order to best enjoy the experience. We were able to sample 6 Wines mainly German, but also Austrian, along with an excellent Buffet.

All in all everyone thoroughly enjoyed the evening.


Some photos of the evening will be posted in the Gallery shortly.



February 4th 2016 produced a very interesting and interactive meeting with a talk on the Application of the German Social Care Model in Staffordshire by Simon Johl.


Starting with a bonding exercise with the audience, Simon then explained the differences between the UK  & German Models for Social Care and the barriers and attitudes to be overcome in implementing the German Model in the UK. As well as Staffordshire, there are several other Local Authorities in the UK implementing the German model.


The talk concluded with 4 teams attempting to construct and then explain a visual model of their view of the model using Spaghetti and Marshmallows. Photos of each team's attempts can be seen in the Gallery.

January 7th saw our first meeting of 2016, which was an interesting interactive Geheimpakete Event - (Mystery Parcels). Participants brought along items in cleverly disguised packages which others tried to identify with a series of questions in German/English. Some people were quite successful and other were somewhat clueless! However it was a very enjoyable evening which ended with a short comedy film (in English) depicting a 90th birthday party with all the participants bar one present in spirit only. This was followed by a spoof of this film in German depicting Angela Merkel as the Birthday Girl!




A booklet detailing this popular programme was circulated for members' interest, 

the full detail can be obtained through the following web link


This year's destinations/dates are:


Bergen, Isle of Rugen 4t-11th June 

Saxon, Switzerland 11th-18th June

Southern Black Forest near Freiburg 16th-23rd July

In the Dahner Felsenland (Pfalz) 23rd-30th July

Hadrian's Wall 13th-20th August

Kent's Bank near Grange-over-Sands, Southern Lakes 20th-27th August


Costs vary between £370 & £515 depending on location & accommodation required - travel insurance is extra.




Herzlichen Dank / A big thank-you to everyone who came along to the December 3rd Adventabend and made it such a success. Marian showed us how to fold an impressive paper star and Jane demonstrated how to cut and fold a card disc into a paper angel. There was a back-up team for this; the design was from Irmgard, who though unable to attend due to a persistent cold, had instructed Jane, Gail and John beforehand as to materials and methods. Thanks especially to John who spent much of the evening cutting and marking the card discs!


Heartfelt thanks also to Rev Terry Bloor for his spiritual meditation on Vier Kerzen,

the four candles of the advent wreath. As he explained, as long as hope remains alight, it can rekindle peace, love and trust even after their flames have gone out. This is a message we can take to heart in our efforts to the keep the Club going.


Our next meeting on the theme of Geheimpakete/ Mystery parcels will be on Thursday 7th January.


Wir wünschen ein frohes Weihnachtsfest und ein gutes Neues Jahr!

North Staffordshire Anglo-German Club


Remembrance Sunday Service at German Military Cemetery

November 8th

10 of us joined the 100 attendees at the Ecumenical Remembrance Service for World Peace at the German Military Cemetery on Cannock Chase.

Established in 1964, the cemetery contains the graves of nearly 5,000 German and Austrian servicemen and women who died in the UK during both world wars. The cemetery is cared for by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Representatives of the British armed forces and the German government took part along with local government officials, members of Anglo-German associations and members of the public.

The bi-lingual service opened with address by Ms Tania von Uslar-Gleichen from the German Embassy, recalling the 70th anniversary of the end of WW2. Then followed a sermon by Pastor Albrecht Köstlin-Büürma from the German Lutheran Church and a reading of the beatitudes by Methodist Minister Reverend Fiona Brown.

The hymn singing in English and German was led by the Cannock Salvation Army Band.

Wreaths were laid at the recumbent statue of an unknown solider on behalf of the Lord Lieutenant of Staffordshire, the German Embassy, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, military associations, the Kameradschaftsverbund, the Dresden Trust, the British-German Association and many others.

Walter Bridge from Blythe Bridge brought the photo of his German uncle, airman Heinz Hermann Rudi Klaus, born 26.1.21, missing in action in 1944/45.

The band then led attendees outside to the cemetery high cross, where they played ‘Nimrod’ from Elgar’s Enigma Variations, the European anthem and the German and British national anthems. The music resounded across the cemetery’s pine-clad valley, which is reminiscent of the north German landscape.

At the reception organised by the Penkridge Anglo-German Remembrance Day Association, former Club Chair Petra said it had been a “memorable and moving” occasion. “The speeches have been thought-provoking and it is very humbling to see so many British people taking an interest.”

Englische Ubersetzung


English Language Service in the Lutheran Church



A unique service will take place on Sunday 13th September in the Lutherkirche, Elmshorn. The preacher will be an Anglican priest, Reverend Terry Bloor of St Mark’s Church, Newcastle-under-Lyme, who will conduct the service in English, using the Anglican rite.


This service is taking place during the 2015 partnership consultation, when 60 clerics from the Northern Church’s 32 partner dioceses are meeting together and learning from each other under the motto “Together on the path of justice.”


At the reception after the service, visitors will be able to meet Terry and learn more about the similarities and differences between the two churches.


Terry discovered the gospel at age 20, changing his view of the world, of people and their relationship to God. “The church is not an institution, it is a movement,” he says, quoting his former Bishop of Stafford. From his school days, Terry has been interested in German history and culture. “I hope that something from our rich Anglican liturgy will be of interest to those who are familiar with the Lutheran tradition,” said Terry.


“I think the basic structure of our communion service will be familiar to all, and easy



October 2015

To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club

Your new Committee is now in place and a Programme up to January 2016 is in place. Look at the Our Committee link above to see the new Committee Members and the Events link to see the forthcoming Programme.

February 2015


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club



Sweet and savoury, our Great German Bake-off last week catered for all the tastes. Some of the cakes were still warm when they were put on the table. Thank you to all you budding bakers who participated. Many thanks to Christine Conlin, who accompanied our Kaffee und Kuchen with a most interesting presentation about the successful Germany: Memory of a Nation exhibition which was held in London.


Next month sees our annual wine taster. James Gillespie, whose unfailing pallet always guides an expert choice of German wines, will present a comparison of German and English wines to us this year. We are pleased to announce that the price is the same as last year. For the bargain price of £5 for members and £7.50 for guests, you will receive 6 different wines, James’ aficionado presentation plus a selection of cheeses and nibbles.


The tickets went on sale last week. As you know, this is a popular event so don’t delay ordering yours. Those who couldn’t make the meeting can nip down to the rugby club to buy tickets or you can send Marj a cheque. Here again the payment options again:


  1. Pop down to the Longton Rugby Club (Eastern Rise, S-o-T, ST4 8GR) and buy them at the bar. Please ring first (01782 594016) to make sure someone is in.


  1. Make a bank transfer into our account at Lloyds TSB. Please send a short email to to let us know.

                (North Staffs Anglo-German Club, Sort Code: 77-58-02, Acc. No.: 33 94 51 68)


  1. Send a cheque to Marj’s address (Marj Vernon, 13 Berwick Walks, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2LJ)

                Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club and put your name and address on the back.


And here are the details again:


Thursday, 5th March at 7.30pm at the Longton Rugby Club (see attached poster). Also, would you take a copy to your local shop, post office etc. to help us get the word round?



Hope to see you all there.





December 2014


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


Thank you to everyone who came to our Christmas meeting last Thursday. We had a wonderful time with Stollen, chocolate and Glühwein and singing along to some well-known English and German Christmas tunes. Dinner for One was also on the programme; we never seem get tired of Freddie Frinton.  


Terry Bloor gave us an update of the link between the Diocese of Lichfield with the Nordkirche in Germany.


It also needs mentioning that last month, we went on our third coach trip this year to the Frankfurt Christmas market in Birmingham. This was a great success and everyone who took part really enjoyed themselves.


In January, we will have to move our meeting to the second Thursday, to the 8th. We will do our annual January quiz for a good start into the year.

Christine Conlin has also offered to tell us a bit about the exhibition ‘Germany, memories of a nation’ which will be displayed in the British Museum until 25.1.15. Those who have seen it may want to contribute. We may take the opportunity to listen to one of the BBC Radio 4 podcasts, presenting the exhibition.


As the year draws to a close, may I just say a big thank you to everyone for supporting our club with raffle prizes. Your help is very much appreciated.


I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and we’ll see you in the new year.





November 2014


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


What a brilliant and thoroughly enjoyable evening we had with Derek Poulson last week! He has taken us on a humorous and entertaining tour around the UK using authentic British dialects, which had us laugh out loud! What a shame if you had to miss this but maybe we can have him again in the future.


Christmas is approaching fast: Saturday after next, we will be visiting the Christmas market in Birmingham. If you have queries about it, please contact Marj. She has the list. For everyone who has reserved a seat: We will be leaving at 9.30am on Sat. 22nd from the rugby club to return for about 6pm.


And the week after our trip will see this year’s advent service. Here is an excerpt from Terry Bloor’s email and invite:


Please let the A-G Club members know that there will be several visitors from the Nordkirche at St. Mark's, Shelton (the big church by the Jaguar garage at the top of Snow Hill), on Saturday, 29th November. The service will be in bi-lingual, as usual, and will begin at 7.00pm. There will be seasonal refreshments served afterwards.


On Thursday 4th December, 7.30pm we will come together for our December meeting at the Anglo-German Club. There will be Christmas songs, Stollen and Glühwein for everyone who wishes to join us.


Thank you again for all your donations for raffle prizes and for your support.


Hope to see you at one of our next events.





October 2014

To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


Just a quick email to say thank you to everyone who came to our October meeting last week. Thank you also to Bill for providing some Bierkeller music for us. We were all quite disappointed that the Oktoberfest had to be cancelled but we made the best of it. Please let us know if any more refunds need to be made.


Please do make a note in your diary for our next meeting on Thursday November 6th. Derek Poulson, a stand-up performer of national fame is coming to join us. He will take us on a humorous tour around the British Isles and her dialects. This event will be free to members and will cost £4 entrance to any guests who would like to come along.


Also a reminder about our trip to the Birmingham Christmas market: 22nd November, 9.30am departure from the rugby club. At the moment, there are another two seats available if you wanted to bring someone along. Please let us know.


Thanks again to everyone for supporting us with raffle prizes and raffle tickets.


Hope to see you all in November.





September 2014


To the members and friends of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


For those who couldn’t make it yesterday: we had a very interesting meeting. We talked about the fall of the Berlin Wall (25th anniversary this year!) and people’s memories were quite varied. If you feel you would still like to share your impressions about this event, I am happy to forward it to Lesley. Lesley and Irmgard could then use these in the panel discussion in Erlangen on November 9th. So do let us know what you remember about the events 25 years ago.


Last weekend, we had our first outing. The trip to the German restaurant in Manchester was a great success. Maryam and Ramin at the Hotspot Ess Paradies made a great effort and we really enjoyed their food. There is a second trip going ahead this coming Sunday, 14th September. We still have places for that one. So if you fancy a three course German meal, please do get in touch.


As you know, the tickets for the Oktoberfest are now on sale. Please don’t delay ordering yours. Here again the payment options:


1. Pop down to the Longton Rugby Club (Eastern Rise, S-o-T, ST4 8GR) and buy them at the bar. Please ring first (01782 594016) to make sure someone is in.


2. Make a bank transfer into our account at Lloyds TSB. Please send a short email to to let us know.

(North Staffs Anglo-German Club, Sort Code: 77-58-02, Acc. No.: 33 94 51 68)


3. Send a cheque to Marj’s address (Marj Vernon, 13 Berwick Walks, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2LJ)

Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club and put your name and address on the back.


And here are the details again:


Saturday, 4th October at 7.30pm at the Longton Rugby Club.

Ticket price: £5 members and £9 non-members. (see attached poster) Also, would you take a copy to your local shop, post office etc. to help us get the word round. Food is included with the ticket price


Donations for raffle prizes are always much appreciated. If you know any businesses in your area who would support us with a raffle prize on this occasion, we would be very grateful.





August 2014


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


Our meeting last week was quite well attended. Thanks again to Irmgard and Clive for their interesting presentation on the long-standing link with Erlangen.


As you know, this November is the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Peter Steger, the Erlangen twinning officer, is organising a panel discussion in Erlangen on 9th November to commemorate this historic milestone and has asked Lesley and Irmgard whether they would represent Stoke for this event. For September, we decided it would be a good idea to listen to some of the interview I gave on BBS Radio Stoke in July and then discuss it afterwards as one of the main topics of the conversation was about the Wall. By way of preparation for the meeting, could everyone please have a think about where they were when the Wall came down and how much they remember about it, first impressions, news, reactions, thoughts at the time. Lesley and Irmgard would very much like to use these memories for the panel discussion in Erlangen to represent the English point-of-view at the time. Thank you for your help in this, giving Lesley and Irmgard something to take with them to the discussion in Erlangen in November.   


Our outings are coming along nicely. The trip to the Birmingham Christmas market on November 22nd only has about 5 seats left at the moment. Please let me know if this was something you wanted to attend and haven’t told me yet or whether there are some more friends interested in coming with us.


The trip to the German restaurant in Manchester had such good reply that we decided to book two coaches in the end. One trip is on Sunday, 31st August, and the other one two weeks after, on Sunday 14th September. Both are going ahead and both still have places. As these trips are in the near future, could you please let me know urgently, whether you want to be on either of these coaches. We need a £5 deposit and your choice of meal soon.


October, the month of our biggest event, is approaching fast. Tickets for our Oktoberfest, Sat. 4th October, will be on sale at our next meeting. You know how popular it is, so make sure you get your early.


Thank you to everyone, who participated in last week’s raffle. There were that many prizes, the draw kept us going for quite some time…





July 2014


What a lovely evening we had last week! A big thank you to everyone who contributed to our delicious buffet. And thanks again for all the raffle prizes you donated and all the tickets you bought.


Next month, Irmgard and Clive offered to do a little presentation about the links they have with our twinning town Erlangen in Bavaria. We are looking forward to this as they have had maintained these contacts for years and have been there many times over the years.


BBC Radio Stoke have invited me to come onto the Den Siegertsz show 10-11am tomorrow. Apparently, there is a football game on Sunday and they are interested in the German view on things…  Please do listen in and if you can’t or aren’t in the area, I’m sure you can listen online at: .


Gordon has told me that Marj has come through her operation, is already looking a lot better and finally on the mend. I will pass on your good wishes, when I’ll go to visit later.


The list for the trip to the German Christmas market in Birmingham on Sat. 22nd November is filling up. You need to let me know if you want to come. Places are £5 refundable on the bus for members and £7.50 for non-members.


For the trip to the Hotspot Essparadies restaurant in Manchester, we have decided the following choice for a three course meal: 


1 Frikadelle + Kartoffelsalat

2 Mozzarella Sticks



1 Schnitzel with Chips (if you want it with Jägersoße + £1)

2 Currywurst

3 Käsespätzle



1 Apfelstrudel

2 Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte

The price for the three-course meal is £13 (+£1 if you want sauce on your schnitzel). We will collect the money in and you would have to choose beforehand which of the dishes you would like to order. Drinks will have to be ordered and paid for individually at the table. We will book a bus free of charge to our members to take us from the Rugby Club at around 1.30pm and bring us back around 6pm. I am suggesting the following dates. Please reply with your choice, so we can decide when to book the restaurant and the bus. Places are very limited, as the restaurant is only small, so please reply back soon with a preference.







June 2014


What a brilliant evening we had last week. Maurice had prepared so many songs for us, classical, lullabies, modern. Clapping-along and singing-along, he kept us busy. Many thanks to Maurice. He is clearly an asset to our Club. Thanks also to Christine Conlin for leading us with her voice.


In order to have a good discussion with the owners of the Hotspot Ess Paradies and to check out their restaurant, I went to Manchester last weekend. As announced, the Club would like to book a coach to take us there one Sunday afternoon later this summer for some original German cuisine. I must say, the food was home from home and the guys, who run the restaurant are very friendly and accommodating. They don’t have a website of their own but here is some info:


They do have a Facebook Page though:


Maybe you want to go yourself and try them out. So as soon as the owner gives us a price, I will forwards a choice of Sundays.


Next month, we thought we could do a Bring & Share, as it’s been a while since we have done that. Please everyone, just bring some food with you to share, English or German. And if you don’t have the time or opportunity to bring something with you, you can leave a small donation.


We are very excited that for the August meeting,  Irmgard and Clive have offered to give us some feedback/presentation on their return trip to Erlangen earlier this year. Normally, we don’t have an August meeting but it seems to have worked out this way and there was initial support for a meeting last week. So everyone is very welcome to attend.



For Saturday, November 22nd , we have booked a coach to take us to the German Christmas Market in Birmingham. Seats are £5 for members, refundable on the day, and £7.50 for non-members. Please make sure you reserve your seat(s) by the July meeting. 





May 2014



Thank you very much to Christine Conlin for making our games evening last night even more enjoyable with some fun exercises around creating new and loooooong German words. We laughed so hard…




We also had a go at the special edition monopoly game, which Peter Steger has sent from Erlangen and presented to the Club quite a while ago, and various other games that people brought to share. It was all good fun.




As I mentioned in my previous email, there is an international event taking place in Hartshill tomorrow from 11am-4pm, in which we have been asked to take part. So if you are interested and would like to support us, then do pop in to the North Staffs Conference Centre (former Medical Institute) on Hartshill Road (ST4 7NY) directly opposite the Noah’s Arc pub. There is a free public car park only three minutes away at the end of Vicarage Road, three roads down towards Stoke on the side of the pub. The large car park in front of the Centre will be closed as there will be lots of stalls outside. However, you will find us inside on the ground floor near the bookstall. I have also been asked to do a German taster session from 11.15am-12pm, so if you are interested in that come early, as there are only 12 places. I have attached the poster again for your information.




Next month, on June 5th, Maurice Greenham, who plays the organ in different churches, has agreed to do a music evening with us. We are looking forward to learning some German songs, so bring your best voice if you want to join in or just come along to listen to what Maurice has prepared for us.





 April 2014


Last Thursday was our second AGM. Thank you to everyone who attended.




Those present voted unanimously for the re-nomination of the committee; that is Petra Cox as chairperson, Lesley Rollason as secretary and Marj Vernon as treasurer. There was also unanimous support for Colin Cox to become our new web administrator as Sam Asher had to resign from this post due to commitments at work.




After the business of the evening we shared a lovely Abendbrot together. Thank you to everyone who contributed and helped out setting up and packing away.




Two suggestions for the use of surplus funds were made, which received great support:




  1. The hire of a coach to the Frankfurt Christmas Market in Birmingham on Saturday, 22nd November 2014. Seats £5 to members, bookable by the July meeting and refundable on the bus. Seats £7.50 to non-members thereafter.  Pick-up at the Rugby Club, where we can leave our cars.


  2. The hire of a coach to the Hotspot Essparadies.  This is a genuine German restaurant in Manchester, which Lesley has tried out for us and she was very pleased with it. After negotiating with the owners, I will give you a choice of dates and then we can make a decision on date and price for this.  



A number of really good ideas was also put forward. They need investigating and I will let you know once I have more details.




Please find attached a poster for an organ concert at St Mark’s. It has been passed on to me by Maurice Greenham, who – we are very pleased to say – offered to do a Music Evening with us in June.




We will meet again on May 1st for a Games Evening. Do bring some board/card/language games with you if you wish. We will supply some nibbles for an enjoyable evening.




Hope to see you all on May 1st.





28th February 2014


Hi all


This is just to let you know that a group of ten A-Level students and their teacher, Ute Guthunz, from Erlangen will be arriving this Sunday for a short visit.


Chrissi Thompson has kindly arranged a get-together at the Methodist Church in Blythe Bridge (opposite the Coop). There will be games, drinks and biscuits for everyone from 5-6.30pm. The young people from Erlangen are very keen on meeting us. So if you are interested in getting to know our German visitors or if you know of any youngsters who might be, please feel welcome to pop in on Sunday.


Your support for this would be very much appreciated.


Bis Sonntag


Last Thursday 06.02.14


What a nice meeting we had last week. Thank you to everyone who took part in the Great German Bake-off! The coffee, cakes and savouries went down a treat! Some very skilful and tasty creations were presented to us and they have attracted a lot of members and yet some new guests to us. We also watched some of Matt Frei’s documentary on Berlin, which was very interesting.


Next month, March 6th, sees our second Wine Taster with James Gillespie from Touchstone Wines. He will present six German wines to us. He is really knowledgeable and has a lot to say about his wines. There will also be free cheeses and biscuits on the tables for you. Ticket sales started really well and I would urge you to sort your tickets soon.


Here again the payment options:


  1. Pop down to the Longton Rugby Club (Eastern Rise, S-o-T, ST4 8GR) and buy them at the bar. Please ring first (01782 594016) to make sure someone is in.


  1. Make a bank transfer into our account at Lloyds TSB. Please send a short email to to let us know.

(North Staffs Anglo-German Club, Sort Code: 77-58-02, Acc. No.: 33 94 51 68)


  1. Send a cheque to Marj’s address (Marj Vernon, 13 Berwick Walks, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2LJ)

Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club and put your name and address on the back.


And here are the details again:


Thursday 6th March at 7.30pm at the Longton Rugby Club.

Ticket price: £5 members and £7.50 non-members. (see attached poster)


Donations for raffle prizes are always much appreciated.


So I hope to see you all in March.


Bis dann


Adobe Acrobat Document 447.1 KB
JPG Image 249.9 KB




February 2014


Hi all


It almost felt like spring today. Wouldn’t it be nice if we’d seen the end of this wet winter? Anyway, February is here and we will meet again on Thursday.


You are probably familiar with the German Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee and cakes) tradition as we have decided to make it the February theme. I hope you budding bakers have been researching some recipes to try out for our great German bake-off next Thursday. This is your chance to show off your baking talents: German, English, sweet, savoury, warm, cold, round, square… Give free reign to your imagination. It would be lovely if you could bring some copies of your recipe to share and discuss. There will be free coffee and tea for everyone and we will try again to watch some of the Matt Frei DVD. If you don’t have the time or skill to participate in the baking, you can leave a small donation and we hope that you will still join us.


As promised, the tickets for next month’s Wine Taster will also be available from Thursday. If you want to make a note in your diary: Thursday 6th March, 7.30pm at the Rugby Club. The price is the same as last year: £5 for members and £7.50 for non-members. Like last year, James Gillespie will have six wines and a fabulous presentation for us. There will also be free cheese & biscuits plates on the tables. This is excellent value for money and the tickets went fast last year. So to avoid disappointment, do make sure you buy your tickets on Thursday. I have attached a poster for your information and we would very much appreciate your help in spreading the word.


Raffle prizes are always gratefully received. Thank you for your continued support.


Bis dann


Wine Tasting Evening Flyer
Adobe Acrobat Document 447.1 KB



January 2014 - Last Thursday 09.01.14


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


Thanks to Lesley for a really good quiz night last Thursday. We had such fun testing our knowledge of all things German.


Thank you also to everyone supporting our raffle with gifts and buying tickets. Your help is very much appreciated.


Next month, on Feb 6th, we are hosting our ‘Great German Bake-off’. As you know, Kaffee und Kuchen is as much a part of the German speaking world as tea and biscuits is in the UK. So if you come across a German or an English recipe for a cake, gateaux, confectionary, sweet or savoury, please do try it out and bring the results of your efforts along for everyone to taste. For those, who have either no time or no baking skills to bring something to share, there will be a chance to make a small donation. We did this last year and I remember trying some excellent cakes along with a nice cup of coffee.


James Gillespie of Touchstone Wines will be holding another one of his Wine Tasters at the Club on Thursday, March 6th. Advance tickets for this event will be on sale from our February meeting on. As this was a very popular event last year, make sure to bring your cheque book on February 6th to avoid disappointment. I’ll let you know the ticket price in my next email.


Thank you for your continued support and hope to see you all on February 6th.


Bis dann





January 2014: This Thursday



Hi all


Ein Frohes Neues! The New Year is already a week old! Hope you all had a nice Christmas break.


This Thursday, 9.1., we will meet again at the Rugby Club at 7.30pm. Lesley has prepared a quiz for us and we can watch some of Matt Frei’s documentary on Berlin.


Hope you will all be able to join us for a chat in English, German or Denglisch!


Bis dann



December 2013: 25.12.13


Just thought I would love to share this lovely tweet on the club's Twitter account that I received from Peter Steger, who works in the Mayor's Office in Erlangen and promotes Stoke-on-Trent's twinning association with the city:


Frohe Weihnachten und ein glückes Neues Jahr für alle Anglo-Germans mit vielen deutsch-englischen Begegnungen zwischen Erlangen und Stoke.


Bis dann






December 2013: 21.12.13


Hi all


Many thanks to Terry Bloor for holding a wonderful German Advent service at his church last Sunday and to Maurice Greenham for accompanying us on the organ at short notice.

We had a lovely time with good old Christmas tunes and some Glühwein afterwards.


Stephan Krueper has found a German shop in London which does do mail orders: (The link is also in our links section for furture reference).  It is quite expensive but has an extensive offer of German foods. Maybe if some people want to order together, we could get over the £100 mark for free delivery. Let me know if you are interested.


To all our members and friends a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Allen unseren Mitgliedern Frohe Weihnachten und ein Glückliches Neues Jahr.


Hope to see you all on January 9th.


Bis dann




December 2013: German Advent Service


Clive has found another interesting article:



Apparently, all things German are all the rage when it comes to Christmas…


Therefore, don’t miss our German Advent service at St Mark’s (Basford Park Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 0PG) this Sunday 15.12., 3rd Advent, at 6.30pm.

There will also be some treats afterwards (Glühwein, chocolates, etc.).


Hope to see you all there.


Bis dann




December 2013: Last Thursday 05.12.13


To the friends and members of the North Staffs Anglo-German Club


Despite the horrible weather, we had a really good turn-out for our Christmas meeting on Thursday with 12 new members joining the Club on the night! Everyone shared some original Stollen from Dresden (courtesy of Steffanie’s mother) while singing along to German Christmas songs. We had a wonderful atmosphere and everyone enjoyed themselves.


We are delighted to announce that next week Sunday (15.12., 3rd Advent, 6.30pm), Terry Bloor, priest-in-charge of St Mark’s (Basford Park Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 0PG) is inviting us all for a German Christmas service.


Please note that our January meeting has been moved from the first to the second week, to 9th January 2014. Lesley will be holding one of her popular quizzes for us. We can also watch some of Matt Frei’s documentary on Berlin.


In February, we will be hosting a Great German bake-off. So start collecting some recipes ideas for a tasty contribution to our Coffee-and-Cake evening.


James Gillespie has agreed to do another wine taster for us in March and April will see the 2014 AGM. Details closer to the time.


Since attending the Remembrance Day service at Cannock Chase in November, I am in contact with Albrecht Köstlin-Büürma, pastor of the German Lutheran Church in Bristol, who led the service that day. He serves rather a large area, covering the South and South-West of England, Wales and the West-Midlands. He said he wouldn’t mind travelling to Stoke, if there are a number of people here who would like to attend a German Lutheran service. Every 4th weekend as well as the Tues/Wed/Th following the 2nd Sunday every month would be possible dates. Please do let me know if you would like to come to such a service so that we can arrange something with Albrecht.

Here is the link to the newsletters (North & East Midlands):


Neil McDonald’s has sent me his Anglo-German Walks brochure for 2014. Please find the pdf attached.


If I don’t see you on 15th, I would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year – Frohe Weihnachten und einen guten Rutsch ins Neue Jahr!

Anglo-German Walks Brochure for 2014
2014 Anglo German Walks brochure.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 1.8 MB





November 2013: Hope you are all well. 32 days till Christmas!


I would like to pass on an invitation of the British-German Association for an Advent Carol service in London on December 4th. Please find the leaflet below (opens as a PDF file).


As you know, on the following day, Thursday December 5th, we will have our own little Christmas party (alas, less glamorous no doubt!) at the Anglo-German Club with Weihnachtslieder, Stollen and Glühwein. All you need to bring is ‘good cheer’ but do let us know, whether you can make it, so we know how much Glühwein to get.


I would also like to invite you all to a German Advent service on Sunday 15th December at 6.30pm. Some of you may remember that Terry Bloor, Priest-in-Charge of St. Mark's in Basford, had organised such a service at his church last year. It was a great success and good fun to be there. So if you fancy getting into the Christmas spirit with some German carols, then we would love to see you there. The address is:  St. Mark's, 211 Basford Park Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 0PG, Tel: 01782 623668, .


Clive has come across a very interesting article. I am sure you can add Stoke-on-Trent to the list! Well worth a read:


Sam Chapman has gratefully offered to be our Web Administrator. She has already given our website a makeover and is busy tweeting for us. The Twitter link can be found in the 'About Us' section of the website or just click on the blue bottle cap on the header of my most recent email. Please follow us if you have a twitter account. Thank you.


Looking forward to seeing you all on Dec 5th.


Bis dann

Invitation of the British-German Association for an Advent Carol service in London on December 4th.
Invitation Advent Carol Concert 1.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 127.1 KB




October 2013: What a brilliant night we had last Saturday!


We sold over 90 tickets again. The room was full and the atmosphere was even better than last time. Thanks to all the publicity we had this time; we have gone beyond our usual geographical circle. Amazingly, we had guests who came all the way from Wolverhampton in the South and Runcorn in the North!

The German beer was flowing, the German food was tasty and Ian Hammond really excelled at providing us with the right selection of music for the evening.

So again, I must say that Schunkeln is well established in North Staffordshire!


Thank you to everyone who supported our raffle. We had a huge selection of prizes on Saturday and many lucky winners.

If you didn’t get a chance to read the article in the Sentinel on Saturday, I have attached a copy for you.

There is also a leaflet attached about the remembrance service in Penkridge on Sunday 10th November. Please let me know if you think you can attend.

There will not be a November meeting this year and we will meet again on Thursday December 5th for a Christmas party.








September 2013: What a nice meeting we had last Thursday. A big thank you to Stefanie for her presentation on her hometown Dresden. Dresden has so much to offer. Definitely worth a visit if you are in the area.


Marj started selling the tickets for the Oktoberfest on Thursday. If you couldn’t make it last Thursday but would like to have tickets, please contact us to reserve some for you. You can pay for them at the next meeting on October 3rd. If you can’t come to that one either, you need to send Marj a cheque/electronic transfer. The address is: 13 Berwick Walks, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2LJ. Or if you happen to come past the Rugby Club, you can buy your tickets at the bar. Just make sure someone is in by ringing first: 01782 594016.


I have attached a flyer for the Oktoberfest for your information and maybe you could help us advertise the event by taking a copy to your local shop/library/doctors etc.


Thank you also to everyone who brought raffle prizes. We need to start asking around for donations for the Oktoberfest. So if anyone has some connections to businesses or organisations, which would like to support us on this occasion, it would be very much appreciated.


It was good of Chrissi and Rob to bring Theresa, so we could meet her. If you remember, a couple of months ago Peter Steger and John Holmes have asked us for help finding accommodation for Theresa, an intern from Erlangen. She is enjoying her time at Stoke-on-Trent City Council very much and will be here for another couple of weeks.


Thank you very much for your continued support and we hope to see you at our next meeting on October 3rd.





July 2013: We had a good meeting last Thursday. It would have been an ideal night to have a BBQ but unfortunately, Jez wasn’t available. Instead we had a very tasty bring & share. Thank you to everyone who brought food to share and raffle prizes to support our Club.



We watched two more parts of an episode of Deutschland aus der Luft, which was really interesting and prompted a good discussion about places presented in the documentary. There are some more episodes available so we might be able to watch another short film later in the year.



There will be no meeting next month as too many people are away on holiday in August. So we will meet again September 5th.


Please do make a note in your diary for the Oktoberfest on Saturday 26th October. Tickets will be available from September 5th. We sold out last year so do make sure you bring your cheque book in September to avoid disappointment. We decided last Thursday to have the October meeting but to skip the November meeting instead, which is very soon after the Oktoberfest.



I will let you know the price of the tickets before our next meeting. Hope you have a nice summer and see you all in September.



June 2013: Thanks to everyone who turned up yesterday.


Lesley had prepared a challenging quiz for us. Actually she had prepared two, so for all those who couldn’t make it yesterday: There is another quiz waiting to be solved for next time! We saw a very thought-provoking short film about Germany, which then led to a discussion about the different places we have all visited in Germany. We also had a brainstorming session about future events. Some very useful suggestions have been made.


So altogether, we had an interesting meeting last night. Thank you for all the donations.


Christine Conlin has sent me an email asking people to join her at Trentham Gardens tonight for a stroll along the Barfußweg. She will be at the turnstile at 6pm. Entrance is only £4 at that time. Here is what she wrote:


As we've got guaranteed sunshine and warmth for the rest of this week and Trentham Gardens' reduced-price summer evenings opening have just started, would any members like to join me in a round of the Barfussweg this Friday evening, June 7th?  The entrance charge is £4 and the Barfussweg has just been extended to 1 km with more new surfaces.  I did it myself when it was new and it's great fun either to splash and squelch your way round or watch others doing it.

More info about the Barfussweg and the summer opening times and price on the Trentham Gardens website.

Please would you tell Thursday's meeting that I'll wait at the Garden entrance turnstiles on Friday 6.00 - 6.15. After that, I'll be at the Barfuusweg itself. There's a hut to leave your footwear in and footshowers to wash off afterwards.


Christine also suggested bringing some food with you for a picnic. Please let me know if you are interested in coming.



May 2013: We were delighted to welcome Clive Dean of LadsanDads last Thursday. He brought half a football team for support and told us all about their trip to Erlangen in a few weeks’ time. It was very interesting to hear about their venture and I hope they took a bit of know-how about Germany away with them. We wish them all the best for their tournament and are looking forward to seeing them again on their return.


Later that night, Paul Farrelly (MP for Newcastle) managed to pop in after the local elections to tell us all about his German connection. Afterwards, we discussed some current issues and we are hoping to see Paul again, when we will have a bit more time to speak some German as well.


Joan Walley (MP for Stoke) sent her apologies as her tight schedule that day did not allow her to visit us. Again, we are hoping to get a chance to welcome her at a later date.


Thank you to everyone for donating to the LadsanDads and supporting our raffle as well. Your support keeps this Club going.


Next month, we will attempt to have a BBQ and if it’s too cold/wet again, we would like to watch a German film so do send some more suggestions of what might be a good one to watch.


Sarah Bridgewater has sent me this link about Henning Wehn, the German comedian, coming to Crewe in October. This looks like a very good night! Maybe we could go as a group? Let me know if this is of interest to you.




April 2013: Thank you to everyone who attended last week’s AGM. We had a great turnout: Nearly 40 people came! Again there were new faces and some even joined up straight away.

Everyone really enjoyed our typical German Abendbrot. Thank you to everyone who contributed.


Apart from looking back at last year and discussing our financial situation, you made some good suggestions about future activities.

The outcome of last Thursday’s unanimous vote was as follows:


Chairperson: Petra Cox

Treasurer: Marj Vernon

Secretary: Lesley Rollason


Your trust is very much appreciated and I am confident we have another fantastic year ahead of us.



As for the next two meetings, we wanted to offer a film and a BBQ. I thought it makes sense to leave the decision until we get closer to May to see which one to do first. If the weather looks nice in May, I think we should grab the chance and have a BBQ, if not, we’ll have it in June and show a German film instead. Maybe you would like to make some suggestions as to which film would be a good choice.



March 2013: Many thanks to James Gillespie for an amazing Weinprobe! The wines were of outstanding q uality and so was the presentation, very informative and well paced. In between the tasting, there was always enough time for our Denglisch conversations and a nice selection of cheeses. Judging by your comments and a few emails I had, everyone who came thoroughly enjoyed themselves. We need to start putting some of these comments onto our website to tell visitors about our successful evenings. I believe it would be a good idea to book James every year; who knows we might become real wine connoisseurs.


For those who couldn’t be there and everyone interested, James has a shop in Stone which is open on Fridays and Saturdays. Here is the link to his website:



Next month, on April 4th, Thursday following the Easter weekend, we will have our first Annual General Meeting. We want to give you a review of the second year of the Club. This is also your chance to give us some feedback or make suggestions. On the agenda for the evening are the following points:


  1. Welcome
  2. Chair’s report
  3. Financial report
  4. Confirmation of committee
  5. Suggestions for 2013/14


The business of the evening, which we intend to keep short and to the point, will be followed by a typical German Abendbrot. We would very much appreciate your support for our Club on this most important evening.


Membership renewals for 2013/14 will be due: £18 full membership and £12 concessions (students & over 65s).


Hope to see you all there.


Bis dann




P.S.: If you are missing a scarf please let me know as there was one left on one of the chairs. I’ve put it in my bag and will bring it with me to the next meeting.




February 2013:  Thank you to everyone who contributed to our “Kaffee und Kuchen” evening last Thursday. There were so many different ones to choose from. Unfortunately, there is only so much cake you can eat. Many were interested in the recipes, so I have scanned them in and attached them for everyone. If there are any more recipes you wish to pass on, just send them to me.


We had some sad news. One of our members, Harry Hitchen, passed away at hospital on Wednesday 30th January after his long illness. Our November meeting was the last one he attended. He was a keen supporter and we will miss him very much. I will let you know, when I find out about funeral arrangements.


For our next meeting on Thursday March 7th at 7.30pm, we are inviting everyone to a German Wine Experience. James Gillespie of Touchstone Wines, Stone, will give us an expert presentation along with sampling six German quality wines. There will be cheese and biscuits on the tables. This is promising to be an excellent evening. Tickets for this event (£5 members, £7.50 guests) are on sale now, through Marj (01782 922165), the Longton Rugby Club (01782 594016) or Touchstone Wines (01785 813753) in Stone if that is closer for you. If you wish to make a transfer, our details are:


(North Staffs Anglo-German Club, Sort Code: 77-58-02, Acc. No.: 33 94 51 68)


  1. You can send a cheque to Marj’s address (Marj Vernon, 13 Berwick Walks, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 2LJ)

Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club and put your name and address on the back.


In April we will hold our first AGM. This will be a very important meeting for our Club and we would appreciate it if as many as possible could attend it.


Peter Steger has met up with Andrew Briggs, Marj and me last week and we have discussed a possible collaboration between the councils of Erlangen, Stoke and our Club. We are looking at organising an Oktoberfest for 2013 at the Kings Hall with German food and drink vendors. This could be a great opportunity for our Club so watch this space. Those who understand German might want to read Peter’s blog in which he mentions our meeting.

Have a look here:

We have also discussed the possibility of organizing a Christmas market trip to Erlangen towards the end of the year. Details to follow.

Irmgard has built links with the VHS in Erlangen over the years and 10-15 of the adult English students will be coming over on Sat 21st September. They are coming to improve their English so knowledge of German is not needed. If you have a spare room in your house to accommodate some of them, Irmgard would be delighted. The following year will see a return visit where you will be welcomed by the people from Erlangen.


May I also bring to your attention a special music evening, which is held in support of the Fresh Hair Wig Salon of the UHNS Cancer Centre. The event will be held at the Madeley Centre on Friday 1st March, 7pm. Tickets are £8 and I have attached a poster for your information.




December 2012:  What a wonderful Christmas party we had last Thursday! Everyone there really enjoyed the Glühwein, the Stollen and the German Christmas songs.


In January, on 3rd Jan, we will have a quiz night. There will be questions in German and English, a good chance to get the brain back in gear after the holidays.  


I would also like to give an advance notice about our March meeting (7.3.) for which we will be having a fabulous evening of wine tasting. Our guide for this special event is James Gillespie who is an eminent wine judge and writer. His columns appear locallly in the Sentinel and in Staffordshire Life. He lectures and speaks about wine all over the UK. For the Anglo-German Club he will introduce and allow us to taste half a dozen wines from South Germany. The wines from Baden-Wurttemberg on which he will be concentrating are very different than wines from further North in the Mosel and Rheingau. We will start with a sparkler made by the same methods as Champagne, move through dry white wine, lovely fruity rosé, classy Baden Pinot Noir (every bit as good as Red Burgundy) and rich red wine from Wurttemberg's special grape Lemberger. He tells us that we will finish the evening with a chance to try the wonderful nectar that is Riesling Eiswein! Tickets for this unmissable event will go on sale during the February meeting and I will let you know the price as soon as the committee has decided.


April will see our fist AGM about which I will send more information in due course.


I am looking forward to an exciting New Year and I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas.





November 2012: Just a few announcements for you:


  1. There will be a film on the Cannock Chase War Memorial and German POWs, who stayed in the UK, next Wednesday at 7pm on the One Show, BBC1. One of the researchers rang me asking for help and I was pleased to be able to put them in contact with three people from the area. So I thought you might be interested in watching the report.
  2. Next weekend, there will be a German delegation visiting Terry Bloor, priest-in-charge at St Mark’s in Basford, Basford Park Road, ST5 0PG. On his behalf, I would like to extend a very warm welcome to anyone wishing to take part in some of the services there, especially the Advent Service on Sat, 1st Dec, at 7pm. This service will feature some German prayers and two German Advent songs. It will be followed by a bring & share supper. Do have a listen and a practise of the German songs here:                                                                          Oh komm, oh komm du Morgenstern:     Die Nacht ist vorgedrungen:
  3. Sunday 2nd Dec, the first of Advent, will see the 10am Communion Service at St Mark’s and a special Advent Service, the Service of Light, at 6pm at Lichfield Cathedral. It would be lovely to see some of you there.
  4. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been enough interest in a sit-down Christmas meal for our December meeting on 13th Dec at the Rugby Club. We now decided to offer some warm Glühwein, Stollen and Weihnachtsgebäck. To get into the Christmas spirit, we will sing along to some German Christmas songs. I will send you some links to those a bit later.


Thank you for your continued support and I’m looking forward to seeing you at some of the above occasions.


November 2012: I have just been informed by Jez that there is a match on Dec 6th so the December meeting has been changed to Thursday 13th.

Please make a note of this in your diary.

Sorry for the inconvenience and I hope you will still be able to come for a meal.


November 2012: We had an interesting meeting last Thursday with Clive Mosby reporting about the British-German Association’s workshop he attended in London. It sounded like a really fabulous networking opportunity. He has sent me a link about 10 reasons to learn German:


We also discussed what to do for our December meeting. Consensus of those present was, to have a Christmas sit-down meal on Dec. 6th similar to the one we had last year. I would appreciate it if you could indicate whether you would support a Christmas meal with a choice of goose and turkey for our next meeting as we would have to start planning details soon.


Yes, I would like to have a Christmas meal on Dec 6th ………………..


No, thank you. I’d prefer to meet for a chat and a drink …..…………



I would like to pass on details about a visit from Germany which Terry Bloor, Priest-in-charge of St Marks in Basford, has organised. I believe that the service on Saturday evening, 1st December, is of particular interest to us as it will be held in English and German and some of the Advent songs will be German, too. I have copied in his email, he sent me yesterday:


I have a list of 12 people who wish to stay fairly locally to St. Mark's during their time here. 


People are arriving on Thursday (afternoon), 29th November and are leaving again on Monday, 3rd December. This means that I will be hoping to find 12 bed-spaces for 4 nights. If anyone from the A-G Club would be willing to play host, that would be great. 


The programme is fairly thin and not in any way prescriptive.


Jens-Peter Drewes and a few would certainly be interested in visiting a church school on the Friday and maybe a local museum or something touristic (hard to find in Stoke!). I will work on this. There is an opportunity for people to visit Lichfield on the Saturday morning / afternoon to see the cathedral (tour - auf Deutsch - provided) and to mix over lunch. Saturday evening would see our service followed by a bring and share supper at St. Mark's (7.00pm).


Sunday will see folk for the normal 10.00am Sunday service in church and have lunch with hosts before going to Lichfield (again) for the special 'Service of Light' with Advent Carols.


I know that 8 landing as a group are hiring a couple of vehicles which will make transportation so much easier.


That's about all I know at present. If you could put out a few 'feelers' amongst the A-G Club members that might get the ball rolling. In the meantime. I will be working on a more comprehensive programme.


Please let me know if you would like to be involved in hosting, attending the service or just meeting up with the German visitors.


There has also been a suggestion by Gordon to visit one of the Christmas markets either in Manchester or Birmingham together. I will make some inquiries into that and let you know about different options.


Thank you for your continued support.



October 2012: What a fantastic night we had last night! It seems that ‘Schunkeln’ is firmly established in Stoke!

Thanks again to everyone who contributed!


I only wish I had had the time to talk to everyone. There were so many new faces. Unfortunately, the bag with all the tickets has ended up in the bin. I was looking forward to expanding my email list. So if you did bring friends along yesterday and they would like to come again, would you mind getting their email addresses or their phone numbers for me so that I can keep them informed about our events?


November will come around quickly now and I am hoping to see some of those new faces on Nov 1st.


And don’t forget to buy the Sentinel tomorrow as the event will be covered in the Monday edition.



Oktoberfest 2012
Please feel free to download the flyer for the Oktoberfest on Sat 13th Oct.
Microsoft Word Document 125.8 KB

September 2012: Thanks to Christine Taylor for a very interesting talk on German traditions and festivals yesterday. It really showed how diverse the German speaking regions are. Our bring-and-share went well and I feel sorry for anyone who missed their chance of trying Anne’s homemade Rote Grütze. Thank you to everyone who brought food along.


We started selling tickets for the Oktoberfest yesterday. If you want to purchase any, I advise you not to leave it too late. You can either get in touch with Marj or alternatively buy them at the Rugby Club (01782 594016), as I have left a stack with them. This event is the biggest one we have organized so far and it is promising to get our name out.


I have also attached a poster, promoting the Oktoberfest. It would be great if you could print one off and take it to your local shop/doctors/coop, etc. where people might be interested.


As we cancelled our meeting at the beginning of October in favour of the Oktoberfest, I hope to see you all on Saturday, 13th October.

June 2012: We had a most interesting evening last Thursday. After a plentiful BBQ, Terry Bloor gave us a little speech (in German!) about the link which has been set up with the Lutheran diocese in Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It was wonderful that he brought four German guests, Heike, Michael, Ulrich and Olaf, with him. There was a lot of information, books, pictures, maps, on Schwerin and the “Mehrgenerationenhaus”. Thank you very much to everyone involved with that.


Thank you to Marj for organising another raffle for us and to everyone who donated prizes. Gill kindly gave three boxes of home baked cupcakes. If you have a bottle of wine or a box of chocolates or something similar for us next time, that would be very much appreciated. The raffles are becoming very valuable for the Club. Thank you for supporting us in this way.


Later in the evening, we were pleased to welcome the mayor of Erlangen, Dr. Balleis, his wife and Peter Steger. Dr. Balleis gave a short speech about his visit to Stoke-on-Trent and later engaged in talking to members around the room. Peter Steger has been busy writing his report and it is available online in German on the Erlangen website: 


And it is with regret that I have to announce that Birgit and Sheena are no longer on the committee due to other commitments. Marj Vernon has kindly agreed to act as treasurer until the end of the financial year.


Our next meeting will be on Thursday July 5th. I would also like to give you an advance notice: There will be no meeting for August as too many people are away during that time.

For July, we thought it would be nice to have a games evening. So if you have some games, preferably German ones, which will help us speak German, please bring those.


All the best to you and I am looking forward to seeing you all in July.


May 2012: We had quite a good turn-out last week with numbers around thirty again. It was a very enjoyable evening. We looked at and discussed pictures of some of the sights of Berlin. Thanks to your generous donations, Marj did another raffle.

We also had some guests from Germany, Hans and Inge, Terry and Lynn’s friends from Plauen in Sachsen.

Next month there will be more guests from Schwerin. Terry Bloor will give us a presentation on the link with Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. I am looking forward to that.

This will be during the jubilee bank holiday week. If the weather is nice (hope springs eternal), we might be able to have a BBQ. For our guests it would be nice if many of you could support the June meeting.

Best wishes for a warmer weekend.


April 2012: Welcome to all new members and thanks to everyone who shared the meal with us last week.

Special thanks to Marj for organizing the raffle for us. This is a fun way of raising money for the Club. Nearly all the donated prizes are gone now. So we would really appreciate it if you would bring some more items along next time.

After the Schnitzel, we watched a German short film. The picture was ok but the sound was a bit quiet again, so I thought I’ll send you the link with this email.

This is the full German version (about 12 minutes):

And this is the shorter version with English subtitles which I showed last Thursday:

Hope you’ll enjoy it as much as we did last week.

Some people raised the idea that we should start a bit later, as people work and may struggle to make the meal for 7pm. Please let me know what you think and send me your suggestions.

Our next meeting will be back on the first Thursday of the month which is 3rd May.


March 2012: Thank you so much to Lesley for providing a fabulous quiz for us last Thursday. It was really good fun and according to the survey, all of those taking part would like to repeat this activity. It was also the first time we had a raffle. Thank you to everyone who took part and to those providing raffle prizes for us. You keep this Club going.


For those who couldn’t be there, here is the programme Peter Steger has suggested for the Bergkirchweih in May:

Sa., 26. May – arrival / guided tour of Erlangen

Su., 27. May – 11am presentation of the stein for the people of Stoke-on-Trent by the mayor Siegfried Balleis / tour around the Bergkirchweih

Mo., 28. May – daytrip through Franconia and Bamberg

Tue., 29. May – daytrip to Nuremberg visiting the Memorium (jury court of the Nuremberg Trial)

Wed., 30. May – daytrip to Rothenburg o.d.T.

Th., 31. May – departure

Evenings could be spent on the Bergkirchweih. He would also change the programme according to personal preferences (i.e. economic, culture, sport, education, etc.). He has ‘blocked’ rooms for 10 people at the Hotel Rangau: Therefore, if you are interested in going, you would have to decide by Wednesday at the latest. Costs would include travelling, accommodation and food. All tours and trips will be paid for by the city of Erlangen. Peter will accompany the group. As you know, I am in contact with our Council about this trip and they have now offered one lump sum of £200 for the group, regardless of how many people travel. Again, you would need to decide quickly now, whether you want to take part in this.

Here is a short film about Erlangen:

And here is a picture of the stein they made for one of their other twin towns: 


For our next meeting, we thought it might be a good idea to have another sit-down meal together. About a year ago we had schnitzel with sautéed potatoes which was hugely popular. Could you let me know whether you would like to support this before I make enquiries at the Rugby Club?  


Looking forward to hearing from you soon.


February 2012: Thank you to everyone who came to our February meeting last week. Despite the cold miserable weather and quite a number of people who weren’t feeling well, we had great fun singing German songs and we also had a very productive evening. Those who were present, really made an effort at brainstorming some ideas for our speaker slot. There were some really good suggestions which should allow us to organize most of the meetings this year. If you couldn’t join us and would still like to contribute, please feel free to note down your ideas into the form below and send the email back to me.  

Some of you have already donated raffle prizes for our next meeting. Thank you again. If you feel you could bring some more along in March then please do. All donations will be gratefully received.  

For March we have scheduled a quiz which should be good fun. I have also received an email of John Holmes, accepting my invitation to visit us in March and tell us more about the Bergkirchweih in Erlangen. I am sure he can answer your questions better than I can and that maybe more people will be interested in attending as a result.

As we are switching the membership from the individual time of joining to annual membership in line with the tax year,  Sheena will calculate the outstanding months for everyone’s 2012/13 payment.  We would appreciate if you could bring a cheque book/cash for the next meeting in order to renew your membership.   

We have also decided last week that we should try and move the April meeting which falls on Maundy Thursday to March 29th, i.e. one week prior. I will let you know as soon as I have managed to secure that date for us with the Rugby Club.

Thanking you all for your continued support.


December 2011: On December 15th we will be having a traditional German Christmas dinner with goose legs or turkey or a vegetarian option, veg, Brussels sprouts, red cabbage, potatoes, dumplings and gravy.  We are pleased to announce that we can offer this meal for £6 per head. As there are costs, planning and preparation involved, you will appreciate that payment for the food has to be received by December 5th. If you are not a member and would like to take part in this, please include the £4 entrance for December in your payment. Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club.



Also, this week Thursday 12-2pm, Lesley and I are invited to Chrisoula Sirigou’s European Lunch show on Red Shift Radio once more. Here is the link if you want to listen in real time, else click on European Lunch in the programme to listen later: . We are grateful for this free promotion of the Club and hope that many of you will have a chance to listen in.






November 2011: Thanks again to everyone for coming to last week’s meeting. Numbers were as usual around 30 again. The German buffet was delicious; thanks for everyone who helped with the food.


Derek Reynolds gave an interesting talk about the Dreieich Twinning Association of Stafford. Their exchange seemed quite different to what Karen Tsang told us about the Stoke-Erlangen link.


Some committee decisions: We are shortly to purchase a memorable web address, some business cards to be distributed among members and we’ll put some money towards our December meal.


On December 15th we will be having a traditional German Christmas dinner with goose legs or turkey or a vegetarian option, veg, Brussels sprouts, red cabbage, potatoes, dumplings and gravy.  We are pleased to announce that we can offer this meal for £6 per head. As there are costs, planning and preparation involved, you will appreciate that payment for the food has to be received by December 5th. If you are not a member and would like to take part in this, please include the £4 entrance for December in your payment. Birgit’s address is: 14 Ashcroft Avenue, S-o-T, ST4 6LZ. Please make cheques payable to North Staffs Anglo-German Club.



October 2011: Our October meeting was yet another successful night with nearly 30 people sharing our own German buffet which was plentiful and a little bit of home from home. Thanks to everyone who helped prepare the food. Again there were six new faces amongst well over 30 visitors.


Our special guest was Karen Tsang from Stoke-on-Trent council who gave us an introduction about the state of the twinning with Erlangen. She mentioned a number of things which are planned for next year. For instance, there are a few Gymnasien (grammar schools) in Erlangen wishing to have exchanges with Stoke schools. If you know of any young people who are looking for an internship in Erlangen, Peter Steger has offered to organise that. She also mentioned Stoke’s Beer Festival in May with which I believe we should get involved. Interesting opportunities for cultural exchanges were pointed out to us and Karen sounded very enthusiastic about a cooperation with the Club in the future.


Derek Lloyd accompanied me last Thursday to Bret Shah’s Love Stoke radio show on 6 Towns Radio. We had a lot of fun and talked plenty, unfortunately not too much about the Club which is why we will probably have to go again…



September 2011: We had a really interesting evening last Thursday. There were eleven new faces and again over 30 people attended our September meeting. This time we started a discussion about our Club’s involvement with the Erlangen twinning.


Thanks again to Birgit, Lesley, David and Terry for meeting up with Peter Steger (PR Erlangen), when he visited Stoke in August, and reporting back to us. Peter Steger was very keen on getting in contact and liaising with us in the future. He has written extensively about his visit. See article and picture here: .


Some interesting points were raised: exploring Stafford’s successful twinning with Dreieich, getting in contact with the Franconian Society (expats living in Erlangen ), participating in Irmgard’s exchange with the VHS (evening school) in Erlangen, keeping Karen Tsang (Investment Development OfficerEnterprise & Skills, City Renewal Services, Stoke) and Peter Steger informed about our activities and at the same time being cautious about getting too involved with the Stoke council which was felt to possibly hinder rather than advance ties with German groups.

Thanks again to everyone for coming to last week’s meeting. Numbers were as usual around 30 again. The German buffet was delicious; thanks for everyone who helped with the food.


Derek Reynolds gave an interesting talk about the Dreieich Twinning Association of Stafford. Their exchange seemed quite different to what Karen Tsang told us about the Stoke-Erlangen link.






Last Thursday, 7. July 2011 we had another successful meeting with around 35 people. The BBQ was great and we enjoyed the time together. We agreed on a few things which are worth mentioning here.


First of all, we voted for six committee members to represent the group and look after its interests.


Petra Cox was elected to the office of Chairperson

Sheena Lemme to the office of Treasurer

Birgit Lemme to the office of Secretary


Lesley Rollason in support of the Chair

David Lloyd in support of the Treasurer

Dawn Birks in support of the Secretary


We also decided to pay a membership fee in order to secure payment for our venue.


We agreed on £18 full membership, £10 reduced membership (children, students, over 65s) for 12 months as well as £4 entrance for non-members and visitors at the door. Most of those present last Thursday have already paid.


You will find the Membership form in our "Download Area".


 Furthermore, we decided to skip the August meeting due to too many absences during the summer holidays.


We will meet again on September 1st.



We are happy to announce that we found a new location!

From June 2011 we will meet at the 


Longton Rugby Club 

Eastern Rise

off Stanley Matthews Way

Trentham Fields





For our October meeting we intend to organize an Oktoberfest with an Oompah Band and German food. The Oktoberfest could be open to the public.


In that case, we would move our October meeting to the following Saturday the 8th of October.