Group is first in country to recruit 3,000 members

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A Sheffield adult education group has become the first of its kind in the country to recruit its 3,000th member.

John Kirkwood is member number 3,000 of the Sheffield University of the Third Age, which specialises in introducing new interests to retired people.

John, who has recently retired, is a long-standing resident in Sheffield who had heard about U3A through family and friends.

He said: “I’m a keen cyclist and I enjoy hill walking but I am particularly interested in the language classes offered by SU3A.

“I’m not a natural linguist but I’m interested in brushing up on my Spanish and will probably make this the first group I will join.”

Chairman Jean Stevenson said: “We are delighted to have reached this landmark – the continuing growth of our organisation is the best testimony to its success.

“Tribute should be paid to all of our members, group co-ordinators, committee members and helpers in making SU3A the success story that it has always been and will continue to be.

“It shows that age is no barrier to developing new interests and meeting new people. In an age of rising costs and cuts in provision retired people are capable of running and sustaining a large and important organisation.”

U3A offers monthly drop-ins, new members’ meetings, lectures, courses and weekend activities with 187 different membership groups concentrating on quality and variety.