Welcome to the Rotary Club of Leicester!


The Rotary Club of Leicester is one of the oldest and largest Rotary Clubs in the United Kingdom, with approximately 70 members, drawn from men and women living in, or whose business serves, the City of Leicester.

In today’s increasingly busy working environment where lunch breaks are rarely taken, it is pleasant to get away to lunch and interact with fellow members of the local business and professional community on a regular weekly basis, for just a short time.


The Club’s accent is on fellowship, and on service projects for the benefit of those less fortunate than ourselves. Directly, and through the worldwide Rotary movement, our Club cares for the local community and for the world through our international service, particularly in developing countries such as water purification and supply projects. Equally, Rotary cares for the people of the world through programmes such as the Rotary Foundation which among many other things provides scholarships for young people to study in other countries.

If you are interested in  coming along to one of our  meetings, which are usually held on Mondays between 12.15 and 13.45, then use the contact us facility to send an e mail and we will respond to make sure you are looked after for your visit. The cost of our lunch time gatherings is £11.00


On 9th July 2018 President Colin welcomed  Ed Cufflin as a new member of the club.


















The President’s chosen charity for this year is Leicester Charity Link. The target is to raise £20,000 via events arranged throughout 2018-2019. Colin is pictured with Sue McEniff of Charity Link and club secretary Clive Smith.

On the 16th.June 2018, some 60 or so students from schools across the City, County, Rutland,Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire  gathered on campus at Leicester’s DeMontfort University to take part in the Rotary District 1070 finals of the Young Designer of the Year competition. Students  have taken part in competitions and/ or a selection process at school level, and so there were probably 600 or so students who initially took part in this process.
Organised by the Rotary Club of Leicester, and hosted by De Montfort University, this is an important showcase for the design and technological skills of the young designers taking place,and there are some valuable rewards for the winners.
Judges, who like the contestants, come from across the City,County, and indeed, Cambridgeshire,  looked at student’s work and projects, produced during their GCSE and A level studies.  There are a multiplicity of designs, which can be either in textiles, electrics, hard resistant materials,( wood, glass, metals etc), or graphics, and this complexity adds to the challenge of choosing  winning entries. 
There were a number of opportunities for students to win a prize. Within each study group,and awarded separately i.e ‘G.C.S.E’ and ‘A’ level there are prizes donated by Rotary District 1070 of 1st…£100.00, 2nd £75.00, 3rd £50.00.
In addition to the Rotary prizes, and adding to the occasion, students could be awarded one or other of the following prizes;
The overall winner of the ‘Rotary District 1070 Young Designer of the Year Award’, carried away a stunning Rotary trophy, a £500.00 Amazon Voucher awarded by De Montfort University, who also provide  Mentorship support to the victorious student.
The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity, who support many young entrepreneurs in the City and County, and recognising the need to  promote design amongst emerging talent,   also presented a £500.00 Amazon Voucher, which was awarded to the Young Designer of the Year from Leicestershire and Rutland.
Jack Masters Hosiery were presenting two prizes, both of £50.00, and awarded to the ‘Most Innovative Textile Designer of the Year’, and the ‘Most Promising Textile Designer of The Year’
Top Dog Marketing have given four trophies, and to be awarded to and recognise the level of skills and craftsmanship that some students demonstrate, so the ‘Craftsman of the Year’, both at GCSE and A Level. And again, at both levels, to the ‘Innovative Young Designer of the Year’ award.
Also attending the event were competitors who have taken part in the ‘Young Photographer’, and ‘Young Writer” of the year competitions, again sponsored by Rotary District 1070
The President of the Rotary Club of Leicester, Richard Power opened the day’s events, and Chris Davies, District Governor of Rotary 1070  presented certificates and prizes to winners.
Simon Bradbury MA (cantab) DipArch RIBA ARB FHEA, Interim Pro Vice Chancellor, Dean, Faculty of Arts, Design and Humanities  presented the Prize to the ‘Rotary Young Designer of the Year’
Pictured below are Sam Walker, winner of the Rotary Young Designer of the year ward, for his apple press design, and winner of the Sir Thomas White award, Lucy Ring ,for her temporary shelter for refugees.









More funds for Gondar Project

Mark Woodland of Leicester de Montfort Rotary Club presented a cheque for £5000 toward our Gondar project. We are most grateful for their contribution towards this ambitious plan.


Past President Richard Power giving a cheque to Tim Beacon of Medical Aid International for £155,950 for the operating theatre equipment for our project in Gondar, Ethiopia. The equipment will be loaded into a container later this month for shipping to Ethiopia ready for installation in October. 


Rotarians Richard Power, John Saunders and Stuart Almond together with LRI surgeon Laurence Wicks visited the premises of Medical Aid International near Bedford to help pack the surgical equipment destined for Gondar, Ethiopia. The £160,000 worth of orthopaedic surgical equipment will shortly be shipped to arrive in Addis Ababa in early October and then on to Gondar by road ready for installation in the new operating theatre in early November, the unit should be ready for orthopaedic surgery in early 2019. Both Richard Power and Laurence Wicks will help with the installation of the equipment and the training of the surgeons and staff in Gondar.






















Young Musician competition

Our Club junior entry, Sofia, received the trophy for the best instrumentalist in the District Young Musician Competition. This was judged against all the instrumental soloists of whatever age who entered the competition from across the whole District. Sofia went on to represent us at the Regional round, judged against the two Districts adjoining D1070, and won the single instrumental place available in the RIBI Final which will be held on 19th May 2018 in Edinburgh.


Our other entry, Emma, in the Intermediate age range, also won her class in the District Final.


Bell Foundry visit

A group of club members made a visit to the Bell Foundry in Loughborough in April.

Everyone appears to be very attentive – probably wondering how big the Christmas tree needs to be to accommodate one of these whoppers.






President’s trip to Portugal

Guimaraes 70th Charter

In March President Richard and partner Trish travelled to Portugal to attend the 70th Birthday celebrations of the Rotary Club of Guimaraes, D1970, our international twin Club. His report follows.

Having stayed overnight in an airport hotel outside Porto, we drove up to Guimaraes via coffee and a visit to the fantastic Thursday market in Barcelos.  We were met in our hotel by Rtns Antonio Pousada (who set up the Leicester/Guimaraes link) and Jacinto Teixeira who took as for a typically Portuguese lunch.  We then went on a brief walking tour of Guimaraes University before attending a tree planting ceremony in central Guimaraes attended by D1970 DG Alberto Carneiro and other dignitaries.

We then went on a tour of the  European Institute of Excellence on Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine.  With our Orthopaedic backgrounds Trish and I found this very interesting, particularly as it was in English!  I’m not sure what our Portuguese colleagues made of it.

While Trish was taken off to tea with the ladies I attended a Club business meeting which was dominated by the DG and all in Portuguese so of limited value to me other than I was able to talk to them about the Gondar Project.

In the evening the Birthday Party was held in the ‘Pousada’ we were staying in.  It was a mix of formal speeches and otherwise very informal dress, eating etc.  I managed to deliver my piece in Portuguese kindly translated beforehand by Antonio.  We exchanged banners and gifts.  It was a very enjoyable evening despite the language limitations.

The following day was spent in Porto including the obligatory Port tasting prior to Ryan Air (on time) back to Stansted.

As an addendum to the visit Guimaraes have provisionally offered to support the Gondar Project with a $7,500 donation which will also be hopefully supported by a D1970 Grant.








Bluebell Service in Swithland Wood

This year’s service was held at 3.00pm on Sunday 6th May 2018. Contact Robert Collins for further details, or check your e mails if you are a member.


Colin Derrick, President Elect of The Rotary Club of Leicester, joined Councillor Pauline Ransom, Lord Mayor of Loughborough and Charnwood, along with her consort, husband Trevor, on probably the hottest day of the year, at the annual Bluebell Service in Swithland Woods on Sunday 6th.May.



Victorious team in the minor sports

The club beat Grantham Sunrise in the quarter final of the minor sports competition, winning by 45 points to 13.











For details of our collection on behalf of RNIB, see the Charitable Activities page. The sum raised was £234.96.











Leicester Gondar Orthopaedic Partnership.

The Rotary Club of Leicester have agreed to support an Appeal for the year 2017/18 to raise the necessary funds to build and equip an Orthopaedic Trauma Theatre in Gondar, Ethiopia. It is hoped that the UHL Orthopaedic Department will also be actively involved in fund-raising activities.


For more details visit https://www.lgop.org


Technology Tournament

On the 21st February 2018, Leicester Rotary  organised a Technology Tournament,  kindly hosted by the Leicester Grammar School, Great Glen. There were 10 schools taking part, 10 from across the County, and from one just across the border, in Lincolnshire. There were  140 students, across key stage 3,4, and 5, and 12 teachers taking part in an unseen challenge, which involved engineering, technical, and design skills. The teams were composed of 4 students and there were three different levels of complexity at each key stage. This is a highly regarded competition,it sits at the heart of STEM subjects, is awarded Crest accreditation by the British Science Association, and is particularly challenging, but has fun at the heart of it.

The task required the teams, using materials provided, to build a launch platform, and send a capsule (a golf training ball) 3 metres into the air. At the simplest level, the capsule was required to land in a designated circular area. At the next level the teams had to bring the capsule down by parachute. At the most difficult level the teams had to send the capsule skywards in a vehicle (a cup) which had to separate from the capsule at a metre from launch. The capsule,launch vehicle and parachute had to land within the designated circle.

These tasks, that were set by Rotary, put the participants’ STEM skills to the fore, involving teamwork and testing their ability in planning, design, ingenuity and innovation, along with manual and presentation skills. Competitors can apply for a Crest Certificate from the British Science Association.

The competition was sponsored firstly by a local charity,The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity,whose Vice Chairman, John Waite,  presented trophies to the three winning teams at each key stage level. Sir Thomas White  offer loan support to young artisan entrepreneurs from Leicestershire and Rutland,along with scholarship opportunities, again, to local students. 
Leicester Rotary were also grateful for the support from local companies, Pick Everard, and Hodges & Drake, who enhance the trophies awarded to the winning teams, by offering an opportunity to visit their respective premises to see and understand how design applies in the workplace.
Colin Davies, Head of the School of Design at DeMontfort University was in attendance, as well as a senior lecturer, also from the University, the President of Leicester Rotary, John Waite, Vice chairman of Sir Thomas White, Rotarians from other clubs, both across Leicester, and as far afield as Telford in Shropshire.
This was a special day…with a real joint effort to involve young people in design and technology.
The schools taking part were :-
Uppingham School
Rawlins Academy
Ratcliffe College
Lancaster Academy
Stamford Endowed
Beauchamp College
Sir Jonathan North
Leicester Grammar
Bosworth Academy
Manor High

John Waite, pictured left, presented the winning teams with a trophy and certificates




An invitation to take up the challenge.





Rotary club members round the table.






A team discussing the project





The winning senior team (Advanced Level) from Stamford Endowed Schools


Intermediate Level winners – Uppingham School

Foundation Level winners – Oakham School


Motoring day at Bruntingthorpe

Make a diary note that on Saturday 12th May 2018 there will be an opportunity to test drive a variety of vehicles, including a truck at this event. There will also be the facility to drive on the racing circuit, both in your own car and/or some of the display vehicles.

More details to follow.



AM-AM golf at the Leicestershire golf club

This year’s competition will be held at The Leicestershire on 23rd May 2018. Teams of 4 persons with official club handicaps are invited to enter. The cost will be £200 per team which will include a meal prior to the presentation.


More details coming soon


RIBI National Golf Championships


 The 31st National Final was held at The Leicestershire Golf Club , on Monday  4th September 2017. An entry form and the Rules for the 2018 event are included below.

 The competition raised £11,100 towards the End Polio now campaign including Bill and Melinda Gates contribution of £2 for every pound raised by Rotary

 Once again, in order to widen participation from smaller clubs, entries of teams comprised of members of two different clubs within a District are permitted.

In addition this year there will be an INDIVIDUAL competition for which any golfing Rotarian is welcome to enter, and GUEST PLAYERS are also welcome. The number of available tee times may be limited (depending on your response) and will be allocated on a ‘first come’ basis.

You can make a provisional reservation by e mailing the organiser, Simon Gravett, at ribigolfcomp@gmail.com

Once again, the event will be held at The Leicestershire Golf Club on Monday 3rd September 2018.


RULES 2018



Round Leicestershire Walk

As part of the Club’s fund raising activities, President Richard is keen to go out on a high.

Two years ago we organised a walk to raise money for our Centenary project at Bradgate Park. This year’s walk will take place on Friday 29th June at 7.00pm and finishing 48 hours later.

All are welcome to take part, family, friends, children ,pets etc

Make a note in your diary as further details will be given nearer the date.


Christmas lunch at The Grand

Guests of honour were the Lord Mayor of Leicester, Rashmikant Joshi, supported by his wife,Mita, the Lady Mayoress, along with Jennifer,Lady Gretton,DCVO,JP, the Lord Lieutenant of Leicester, and Rosemary Conley,CBE,DL, business woman and author, as members of the Leicester Rotary Club,came together for a splendid Christmas lunch at the Grand Hotel, in the centre of the City.

It was a very jolly occasion,replete with crackers,tinsel and paper hats, even the odd joke or two, as Rotarians,their partners, and other guests, enjoyed a sumptuous Roast Turkey dinner,followed by an excellent plum pudding, all washed down with a glass or two of Bucks fizz.
The icing on the cake, was a talk given by Rosemary Conley. Rosemary had lost her voice that very morning, but the fact that she stood up,to carry on,and entertain the audience, epitomised, the very grit that has driven her to such success in her business and charity affairs over many years. This was a story that took us through her fundraising exploits for Steps,which was poignant and moving. It was, she said, “the biggest excitement, the biggest thing in my life”. Rosemary didn’t duck any issues in her business life, there were highs and lows, insolvency, loss of business, “disappointments as well as fun and frolics”
She is of course, still there, and still fighting…and of course, being Rosemary, we had advice about diet and exercise!
Simon Gravett can be seen being presented with his Paul Harris award for his outstanding contribution to the club with fundraising for charitable causes, and in particular his organisation of local and national golf events over several years.
In short then, a true message of Christmas.










































Age Concern 2017

An arresting moment as Bob Rawlinson, Babs Marson, and Colin Derrick of Leicester Rotary, join members of the City police force, who together are eagerly waiting to serve excited senior Citizens, who have gathered at AgeUk’s Clarence House, in Humberstone Gate for a special Christmas Lunch.
 There was a band playing Carols, everyone singing along, crackers, decorations, and mince pies, along with a Turkey dinner with all the trimmings, and followed by a scrumptious Christmas pudding with brandy sauce.
 Pensioners,Police, and Rotarians all had a jolly good time, and left full of Christmas cheer.
 An excellent day!




Visit to the Caterpillar plant at Desford

On 29th November 2017,  18 members of the club went on a visit to the Caterpillar plant at Desford. This proved to be a really interesting trip which included a tour of the production line and a demonstration of the power and versatility of several of the vehicles.







DMU hosts Rotary contest spotlighting designers of the future

A canny invention for the motorsport world scooped the top prize in a young designers’ showdown hosted by De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).

A-level student Oliver Warner was named ‘Young Designer of the Year’ at the competition organised by District 1070 Rotary Clubs, after impressing the judges with his neat idea for a maintenance lift to make it easier to service go-karts.

The event was a great sucess and will be repeated in 2018



Forthcoming Public Event.

Weekly Meeting 24th September 2018
Sep 24 @ 12:15 – 13:45

Professor Jenny Harding, Chairman of Trustees of the Leicester Drama Society, will give a talk entitled ‘Centenary Challenge of expanding the Little Theatre’

Weekly Meeting 1st October 2018
Oct 1 @ 12:15 – 13:45

Councillor Ross Grant, the Lord Mayor of Leicester, will speak about “My year in Office”

Weekly Meeting 8th October 2018
Oct 8 @ 12:15 – 13:45

Peter Tyldesley, Director of Bradgate Park Trust, will provide an update on how the new Visitor Centre is progressing


For Members-Only events see the members calendar by clicking here


Latest Presidents Newsletter

  • President’s Newsletter July 2017

    Welcome to my first news post as your Club President. As we enter a new century as one of the oldest clubs in the UK we can look back with pride over our first 100 years. Our Centenary year was a tremendous success due in large part to all the efforts of Past President David Brunton, who will be a very hard act to follow as President.We live in turbulent times and Rotary is not immune to those pressures. However, using the 17/18 theme of RI President, Ian Riseley, “we know that we can do more together than we could ever hope to do alone.”

    The greatest challenge facing all clubs is that of falling membership. Although our membership numbers have stayed largely unchanged over the last few years, if we are to remain an active club we have to attract new members who are committed to the principles of Service before Self. As well as all members actively recruiting, we will be exploring the option od setting up a Satellite Club and also working more closely with the other two members of the Leicester family, De Montfort and Novus.

    As well as raising and allocating funds to our local Charities, we will be embarking on a major fund-raising campaign to provide equipment for an Orthopaedic Operating Theatre in Gondar, North-west Ethiopia. A number of events are planned for the year, starting with your President running in the footsteps of the legendary Haile Gabrselassie in The Great Ethiopia Run at the end of November. Much training needed!
    As you know Rodney Spokes is moving to a higher plane and Jonathan Kerry will be taking on membership for this year. Nick Thomson will be taking over as Club Secretary—a role he has been carrying out over the last few months in any case.
    If you have any ideas on how to improve the Club or contribute to fundraising activities then please share them with me.
    I look forward to working with you all over the coming year and would encourage you all to both contribute as much as possible to the Club, but also make the most of what Rotary has to offer.


    Richard Power



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For previous versions of the Presidents Newsletter please click here