January 2024 (493)

The 493rd meeting of Henley Probus Club was held at Badgemore Park on Tuesday, 9th January 2024.

Swan Upping @ Henley Men's Probus Club in January 2024. Photo copyright Henley Men's Probus Club.

The Chairman bid everyone best wishes for 2024 and then welcomed 3 visitors to the meeting. The Treasurer updated the members on the Club’s finances at end 2023. This was followed by updates on the forthcoming Social events and Speakers that are planned for the first half of 2024. Tony Brown, the Chairman elect for the forthcoming Probus year, then summarised the current thinking for the 500th meeting of Henley Probus which will take place later in 2024 – members views are sought on the content, structure and venue of this meeting.

The Chairman introduced the guest speaker, David Barber, who is His Majesty’s Swan Marker. Prior to his current role he had been the Queens Swan Marker for 30 years. With the assistance of a comprehensive slide presentation, David explained the history of swan marking over 1000 years and the development over time of swan upping particularly in the River Thames. The topics covered included process used, how the nesting habits had changed, the effects of pollution on swans , the details of Swan Upping today, the cygnet registration process and the importance attached to the education of young people on the protection that is being afforded to swans today.