Farewell to our 19 – 20 President

Rotarian Bob Barrett

Outgoing Presidents are often remembered for their fundraising successes. They tend to be judged on how much monies they can raise for charity.  However, thanks to the pandemic Bob wasn’t able to benefit from our normal fundraising activities.

We lost out on monies normally raised through Swindon’s Famous Duck Race We lost out on the quizzes and activities with Swindon Cares and Old Town Festival. we went able to attend the VE Day celebrations.  We missed out on Bob’s President’s Night and his planned trip to take us all to a twinning visit to Ypres.

And yet in other ways, Bob’s enthusiasm and support, for not just Rotary but his many other charities have made his year very special. 

Visiting Charities

In the first part of the year, Bob was able to go back to Belarus to visit his families and their school.  He had persuaded three local runners to enter the London Marathon in aid of the charity but then lost that thanks to the Covid 19.  However, he has continued to support the people of Ozarichi and draw attention to their plight, in every way possible.

As our President Bob was always there to welcome new speakers and when required join in the fun.

Working with other clubs

The year featured a successful Rotary Young Photography competition with a record number of entries and one local winner who went on to the Nation Competition. The mayor alongside Bob presented the certificates and prizes in the Mayor’s Parlour.

In the public eye Bob was able to represent us at the Swindon Remembrance Day in November 2019 with the Presidents of Swindon and Thamesdown.

Bob worked tirelessly with other local Rotary clubs to share publicity and media opportunities as well as involving our local MP in his various causes.

Bob pictured here with members of Swindon Club who contributed to the defibrillator presented to the Kings Arms in Wood Street.

Keeping in touch

Bob also attended many functions along with Glen to support his favourite charities. He also visited other Rotary clubs during the winter months.

Since club members stopped meeting in person Bob has written his weekly President’s Message published in the Friday Update. This was to keep us in touch with each other despite the physical distancing.  He continued to chair all the Council meetings via Zoom and encouraged members to embrace new ways of meeting.

Bob presenting the club’s contribution to Graham for the Satellite group launch.

Most importantly, Bob will be remembered for inducting into our club two new, valued Rotarians, Junab Ali and latterly Neil Hopkins. He will also be remembered for his support, help in the development of our first satellite group.

 Thank you, Bob, for a great Rotary Old Town Year 2019 – 2020