FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions
How long has The Group been going?
We started back in 2006 in Haywards Heath. Recognising a need for single people to get together in a friendly environment, we approached a nice pub landlady and things really started moving. We told the local press about The Group and from then the enquiries kept on coming.
When and Where are your Club Nights held?
We meet in Lewes on the first Tuesday of the month, Burgess Hill on the second Monday, Brighton on the third Tuesday and Horsham on the fourth Monday.
Do people sometimes find it difficult to walk into a pub where they know nobody?
It can seem daunting but we always speak to people on the phone before they come so that they know that there will be somebody to introduce them to members. It’s useful to remember that everybody there was new once. There will always be people to make you feel welcome.
What age do The Group members tend to be?
50+ but actually we don’t ask joining members their age. If you are younger, you are still welcome and we don’t have an upper age limit.
Can I come along to see if The Group is for me?
Yes. Telephone one of the numbers on the Contacts page and arrange to go along to a club night. There will be a sample diary there and you can meet people and decide whether you would like to join. Of course, you would have to be a member to attend any of the events.
Is it expensive to join?
No. It’s a very modest fee. We are not a business and so do not have a large admin team. Our membership fee is the same whichever time of year you join. Whether people join in January, the start of our year, or at any other time, the fee remains the same and is valid until the end of December.
You now operate in several areas. How did the expansion happen?
Some members who had joined us at Haywards Heath lived in Brighton and suggested that a venue at the coast might also be popular. They were right. It opened in 2007 and its position in Hove has proved to be very successful, a nice venue without the parking problems sometimes associated with the city. Some members travel to all club nights. The Third one opened in 2009 in a rural pub near Horsham. By popular request, we’ve now moved to a town centre pub and are delighted with its success. Our new venue in Lewes opened in 2012, another success for The Group.
How many members does The Group have?
Around 400. Our membership terms – i.e. renewing every January – ensure that all of those members are current, no out of date membership lists.
Is it run by a committee?
We have a committee which meets 3 or 4 times a year. It is attended by co-ordinators who run each of our venues, Brighton, Lewes, Horsham and Mid Sussex, as well as the treasurer and secretary.
Who organises The Group events?
The members. That way we get great variety in the things we do.
How do I know what events are available?
We issue a diary twice a month.
How do I receive the diary?
It is emailed to all members. It shows the date, time, venue, details of the event and the organising member’s contact details. You just have to contact the organiser.
You say you email events to all members, but I don’t have a computer. Can they be emailed to a friend or family member?
No. You must have your own email address, even if it’s at work or accessed through a friend’s computer. Your public library will help you set up an account so that you can download your messages from a library terminal.
How do members go about organising an event?
Something like a get-together in a pub, a restaurant meal, or a walk, takes very little organising. Once you have been along to a club night and become a member, you would email details of your event to madeline, who co-ordinates the diary, with your contact phone no. or email address. It would appear on The Group diary and then the calls would come in. Make sure you get members’ mobile numbers so that you can contact them on the day of the event if necessary.
Do you have sports on the diary?
Yes. The current diary shows badminton, skittles, golf, horseracing and bowling. All organised by our members. And we’re always happy to hear of more sporting events, whether participating or watching.
We have had trips to Amsterdam, Budapest, Scotland, Prague, Bruges, Ireland, a Mediterranean cruise, Spain, Berlin, Turkey and camping in Sussex. All of these trips were organised by Group members. We now also have golfing holidays.
How do I join?
Call one of the co-ordinators on the Contacts page and arrange to attend a club night. New members can only join in person at a club night.
Where do you meet for the Club Nights?
We don’t publish the addresses, preferring to have a chat with prospective members before they come along. That way they can be sure we are the sort of club they are looking for. It is also more comfortable for everybody to know that each person in the room is a member, or prospective member, rather than somebody who has learnt the venue address through a newspaper advertisement.
Who will I meet when I attend?
The co-ordinators attend club nights, as well as people we call welcomers who are there to do just that. They wear a badge with the word “Welcomer” and will be there to make sure your visit is enjoyable.
Sounds interesting. What do I do now?
Give us a call. The numbers are on the Contact Us page