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The European Union of Women 60 years on
In the beautiful grounds of a Bicester hotel, more than 30 leading women gathered together over two days in April to discuss the future strategy of their organisation. The Council meeting and annual policy forum met to consider the necessary strategies to bring the organisation up to date in the modern world of social media.
The Chairman of the British Section of EUW, Dr Margaret Stockham Turner, said: "Our organisation was formed by an Austrian doctor some 60 years ago, in the aftermath of World War II, for women on the centre right of politics. The need for women to network and lobby for improvements is just as necessary for us today as it was in 1953."
Guest speaker, The Lord Lieutenant of Bedfordshire, Helen Nellis created great interest. The first female Lord Lieutenant ever in Bedfordshire, Mrs Nellis recognised the work that EUW had done to encourage women to put themselves forward for positions in public life. The second guest speaker was Marta Andreasen MEP, a budget specialist sitting on the Budget Control Committee of the European Parliament. This was most pertinent as Europe recovers from a long period of austerity which has particularly affected women and their families. Bicester Mayor, Cllr Melanie Magee spoke of her work encouraging girls to 'reach for the skies'. Margaret Stockham Turner said "It is pleasantly gratifying that so many mayors are women. There is great enthusiasm for networking and supporting women in public life, for gathering together new ideas and reaching out and encouraging other women to join us."