Monthly General Meeting 6th June 2016

Despite already having a membership of 1783, by far the largest of the other U3A’s in the area, whose numbers range from 160 to 620, Moraira Teulada U3A continues to attract new members, as 32 joined at the Monthly General Meeting held at the Salón S.L. Teulada on Monday 6th June, with 5 late renewals now totals 1,820 members.

Attached is one photograph showing some of the 200 plus members who stayed for the meeting and the talk.

The speaker at the meeting was Roger Gumbell, assisted from time to time by Blanca Lopez, both of whom moved to Moraira in 1999 and at that time decided that they wanted to get involved with local groups and in particular the Moors and Christians. Roger said that at that time it was difficult to join any of the filás, the individual group, which comprise the Moros & Cristianos, as you had to be introduced to and then accepted by the filás. Blanca interjected and said that for a number of reasons, it was now easier to join any of the eleven separate filás in Moraira. You however needed to commit a lot of your time and effort also some of your cash to join and participate. Depending which filás you sought to join, their annual fee might cost you anywhere between €400 and €1000, to this you had to add the hire of the costumes, three of them and other costs. They however themselves have never regretted joining, but have decided that this will be their last year.

Both Roger and Blanca decided back in 1999 to join one of the filás, in their case they chose to join one of the Moor groups, which according to Roger had the best costumes, the best music and were generous enough to lose to the Christians in the end.

Those present learnt a lot as Roger started his talk by mentioning that under the command of Tarq ibn-Ziyad an army made up of Islamic Moors of Arab and Barber descendants crossed the Strait of Gibraltar in 711 AD from northern Africa, landing first at Gibraltar, before moving inland and in both directions along the coast to conquer the Iberian Peninsula. After over 700 years they subsequently, following the marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragón and Isabella I of Castile, surrendered and were expelled from their last remaining stronghold in Granada, in 1492. He also mentioned that the beach in Moraira, Platja de ‘Ampolla, was regularly used by the Moors as it was not protected then. The castle tower there today, was not completed until 1742 and then as a protection against the Barbary pirates.

The attached photograph shows Eileen Haxon the Speakers Liaison member of the committee, flanked by Blanca and Roger after their talk.

John Manley
6th June 2016

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