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West Anglia

The West Anglia group was created in 2005. The region covered by the group includes: Beds, Bucks, Herts and Northants. The group was set up mainly for networking, but further objectives include: exchange of information on aspects of indexing – both current and future; help and advice on self-employment and running a freelance business; improving work opportunities and helping students. We aim to meet every three months – in January, April, July and October. We try to arrange meetings at venues within easy walking distance of a train or coach station, but car sharing can be arranged for those venues not easily accessible by public transport. Everyone is welcome to join us at meetings, whether from the locality or further afield.

The West Anglia group runs a discussion forum that is is open to all members of the Society.

Further information

For further information, please contact the West Anglia group coordinator, Malcolm Henley:

Forthcoming meetings

Due to the coronavirus emergency the meeting planned for April 2020 was cancelled. Information about future meetings will be posted here in due course once the lockdown restrictions have been eased. In the meantime, you can keep in touch with other indexers via Sideline and the group forums. Don’t forget you can join discussions on all the local group forums.

Previous meetings

Tuesday 14 January at 12.00 at The Higgins Pantry, Castle Lane, Bedford MK40 3XD

Six of us met for our post-Christmas lunch. We had used this venue before, and the food and atmosphere were as good as ever. We compared notes on indexes completed, and the vast range of subjects covered. We all had work on. Nicola had a heavy workload, and Beverley also does copy editing and proofreading. We discussed Cambridge University Press, as Nicola had recently visited them with Paula Clarke Bain and discussed their indexing needs with a group of editors. We learnt that the SfEP conference will be held in Milton Keynes in September.

Thursday 24 October 2019 at 12.00 at Abbot’s Kitchen Café at St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard, St Albans, AL1 1BY

Five of us met for lunch, with two apologies for absence. We hadn’t used this venue for some time. Since then the café and gift shop area has been completely refurbished – lovely surroundings and good food. We talked about the London conference, and the ideas for future conferences, with Birmingham and Germany both in the frame. Embedded indexing was discussed, as Jane and Beverley have both done a lot of work for CUP. They are prolific publishers, so a lot of work is available.

Thursday 18 July 2019 at 12.00 at The Barge Inn, 15 Newport Road, Woolstone, Milton Keynes MK15 0AE.

Six of us met here for lunch at this new venue. Service was slow due to a kitchen fault. However we eventually had an enjoyable meal. We talked about poor rates of pay offered by particular publishers, and we talked more generally about accepting or refusing low offers. We also talked about membership levels, as WAG hasn’t acquired a new member for some time. Nicola explained that there are new members joining, but not in our area. We also discussed next year’s conference, which will probably be in Birmingham.

Thursday 4 April 2019 at 12.00 – The White Lion, Watling Street, Dunstable LU6 1RS

Five of us met at the White Lion pub in Dunstable. A friendly family-run venue with good food. We talked marketing, and how even seasoned indexers need to think about it, to meet the demand for regular work. The recent National Indexing Day was discussed. We talked about this year’s London conference, and the pros and cons of attending the whole event or only a part of it. We all approved of the new format Indexer, a big improvement.

Wednesday 9 January 2019 at 12.00 – the Capadocia Turkish restaurant, 8 St John Street, Newport Pagnell MK16 8HN 

Four of us met for lunch at this new venue. There were five apologies for absence. We had a very good meal in nice surroundings.  Nicola filled us in on progress with National Indexing Day, and this year’s conference. Last year only Nicola from our group attended. This year it should be more tempting for WAG members. We discussed the usual work issues, and the future of WAG, given the declining numbers. We think it worthwhile continuing with the group, if only for the fact that we enjoy our meetings.

Wednesday 17 October 2018 at 12.00 – the Crown pub, 9 Market Square, Stony Stratford, Milton Keynes MK11 1BE.

Four of us met for lunch. We received two apologies for absence. We enjoyed a good lunch in a quiet dining room, so conversation was easy.  We talked about the recent conference. Only Nicola King had been able to attend. It was interesting to hear that SI and SfEP members were interspersed between the tables at dinner, and had a joint plenary session. Looking at next year’s event, two days in London, we must aim for  West Anglia to be represented in force. We congratulated Nicola on becoming the new SI Chair. She told us that there has been a steady supply of new SI members, but none of them live in the WA region.