Incorporating the Variety Artistes' Federation
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September 2011 Newsletter

23 August 2011


We Need YOU at our Meetings

Dates for Branch Meetings for the rest of 2011 are:

Mondays 19 September; 21 November, 12 December


at The Fiddlers Three

Pasture Lane, Clayton, Bradford, BD7 2SQ

Bus 636 or 637 from Stand J Bradford Interchange to Pasture Lane near junction with Clayton Road.

In November we are hoping to have a National Speaker from Equity. In December, we will be having a short meeting followed by our Christmas Social.


Jackie Provis – an Appreciation

We are sorry to report that Jackie Provis died on Saturday 21 May. Jackie was Honorary Secretary of our branch for 19 years. Here, some of Jackie’s friends and colleagues in Equity remember her.

Branch Treasurer Brenda Martine said: “Jackie has been a stalwart member of Equity. Throughout her illness and indeed before,  Jackie never missed a meeting, whether of the Branch or the Equity Annual Conference. She has always been there for our members. I shall miss her terribly as will a lot of others.

“Jackie was also extensively involved with the RSPCA, her favourite charity. With her sister Sheila, Jackie was always collecting raffle prizes and arranging fund raising days and over the years they raised a lot of money. In addition, Jackie volunteered to visit people who wanted a pet from the RSPCA to make sure that the animal had a suitable and loving home waiting for them. She was a very special lady and god bless her.”

Former Branch Vice-Chair Kieran O’Regan added: “Jackie was the glue that held Branch meetings together and she was always friendly and welcoming. She was a great person who I am very proud to have known and meetings will not be the same without her.”            

Regional Organiser Nigel Jones told us: “I first met Jackie in 1990. In 1992 she became Branch Secretary – a post she held until her death 19 years later in May this year. I saw Jackie perform only once and was impressed by the power of her voice and the professionalism of her delivery. As Branch Secretary, Jackie was a friend and ally, and was always welcoming and inclusive to all the members who attended meetings over the years. Jackie flew the Branch flag at every Annual Conference until 2010, speaking from the rostrum in most of those years. She will be greatly missed.”

For the full version of this article including the Eulogy June Martell gave at Jackie’s funeral, go to:


Jackie Clare (Provis) Memorial Concert

in aid of Bradford Royal Infirmary Chemotherapy Department. Starring Janie Voltaire, Nicky Newsome, Johnny Dee, Soul City (Brenda Martine, Curtis Denham and Ellie Davis). Commère - June Martell. Bingo/Raffle. Wednesday 12 October, Doors open 7pm, Tickets £5. At Manningham Ward Labour Club, Bull Royd Lane, Bradford, BD8 0LJ.


Introducing your new Branch Committee

Your Branch’s Annual General Meeting took place in June and several new Officers and Committee members were elected. Cabaret Artiste Janie Voltaire takes over in the Chair and Children’s Entertainer Megan James is now Vice-Chair. Two candidates stood for the post of Secretary and Children’s Entertainer Valerie Jean Mann, was elected. Storyteller Pete Keal now takes on responsibility for Public Relations and Web Site Management. Barry Morrow and Brenda Martine remain as Assistant Secretary and Treasurer respectively.

Steve Andromeda, Amy Rose Atkinson, Roy Atkinson, Bob Charles, Frank Chislett, Paul Harper and Mary Tipton all volunteered to become new committee members. Kim Le Mar and Derek Thorp also remain on the Committee.                              

We wish to say thank you for your hard work to former officers and committee members Chris Lee, Kieran O’Regan, and Mary Daly.


Invigorating Your Union Branch part 2  

At the AGM there was a lively discussion about how we can widen branch activities and encourage you, our members, to become more involved. Suggestions included arranging a tour for members of Leeds City Varieties; members putting on fund raising shows in venues around the Branch’s area; Branch outings; inviting speakers to Branch meetings; holding some meetings in different parts of the area. So, the new Committee has lots to get on with and we need your help and involvement too. Please send suggestions as to what the branch should be doing and any offers of help to either or


Keeping in touch with you

Like other Equity branches, we would like to use modern communi-cation methods such as e-mail to keep you up to date with Branch News. Please would all Branch members fill in the Member’s Contact Information form which can be downloaded from:

and send their up to date contact details to the Branch Secretary at 16 Birkhill Crescent, Birkenshaw, West Yorkshire, BD11 2LJ, as soon as possible.


From the Secretary:

I would like to take this opportunity to say a very big thank you to all of the members who voted for me to be Branch Secretary at the A.G.M. On Monday 20th June 2011, when the position became vacant with the sad loss of Jackie Provis, Jackie was a great asset to Equity and a personal friend to a lot of us. I am well aware she will be a hard act to follow.

            The meeting was very well attended with lots of input from various members, including maybe a tour of the newly refurbished Leeds City Varieties, inviting speakers to the Branch meetings, fund-raising events and shows to encourage more members to come along and get involved.

            So I would like to ask all Branch members to support the Branch by attending meetings, as you get the opportunity to ask questions and receive answers regarding any problems that can occur in our profession. Come along and meet fellow artistes for a chat, you never know, it could be FUN and you may pick-up some good ideas.

Valerie Jean Mann ( Secretary )     


If you have something you would like included in the Branch Newsletter, please e-mail

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