Do you remember the 1990s? A time before smartphones and the Internet, it was the decade of cool Britannia, Mr. Blobby and New Labour.
New Labour wasn't the only new kid in town, though. On the 1st of June 1998, Richmond and Twickenham received its first Toastmasters club, Riverside Communicators.
Two thousand twenty-three marks Riverside Communicator's 25th birthday anniversary. Doesn't time fly when you are having fun? Riverside has changed significantly since 1998, with hundreds of Toastmasters coming and going. It has seen at least three former members grace a TEDx stage, an achievement not many Toastmasters clubs can boast.
The club held a grand celebration meeting this year to mark its 25th birthday. The evening brought together past and present club members for a night of reflection, inspiration, and festivity.
The commemorative event featured various captivating speeches by club members, highlighting the valuable lessons they gained from their time at Riverside Communicators. Attendees were treated to insightful anecdotes and personal growth stories, showcasing the transformational power of the club's supportive and constructive environment.
In addition, video messages were shared from beloved members who could not attend the event physically but wanted to convey their heartfelt wishes.
Club President Duncan Hammett expressed his satisfaction with the progress he has witnessed in Riverside Communicators members throughout the years. "I enjoy watching people transform into better, more confident speakers during their time with the club," said Duncan, emphasizing the club's dedication to fostering personal growth and empowerment.
The birthday celebration received a distinguished guest, the new Mayoress of Richmond, Councillor Suzette Nicholson. Councillor Nicholson graciously joined the festivities and was given the honour of cutting the birthday cake, symbolizing the club's milestone achievement and commitment to nurturing a vibrant speaking community in the Twickenham and Richmond area.
To add an element of surprise and inspiration, the event featured a mystery speaker who delighted the audience with his insightful remarks. Former Riverside Communicators member Matthew Syed, a renowned author and expert on talent, performance, and mindset, shared his experiences and the club's profound impact on his personal journey.
The Riverside Communicator's 25th birthday party meeting was a testament to the club's enduring legacy of helping individuals overcome public speaking fears, enhance communication skills, and cultivate leadership abilities.
As the evening drew to a close, attendees left with renewed enthusiasm, armed with the knowledge that Riverside Communicators will continue to empower individuals for many years to come.
Happy Birthday Riverside Communicators. Here's to another 25 years.