National u3a

The u3a Movement

The u3a movement is nationwide, most towns have a local u3a. Currently there are over 1,000 u3as with over 450,000 members. There is a national u3a body, the u3a Trust, which provides educational and administrative support to the local u3as.

Regular readers of the Journal will know that over the past year we have drawn your attention to many of the varied things that are available to all u3a members nationally. Below is a summary of the things we have covered:

 • Click and Save – this allows u3a members to buy a range of Gift Cards and eGift Cards at a reduced cost. You do not need to use the Gift Card or eGift Card yourself and so this is something you might want to consider. Please see the February Journal for more details or log onto the Tonbridge u3a website at https://

 • Interest Groups Online (IGO) – this is an online u3a community that allows you to join groups, talks and courses from the comfort of your home. It costs £12 per year to join. Further details can be found at • Online learning events – these events are available free of charge to u3a members nationally and therefore should not be confused with Interest Groups Online. New events are added regularly. To find out what is available currently and how to register for any specific event you are interested in, please go to https://

 • The monthly u3a radio podcast - this features interviews with members, interest group leaders, Trustees, national volunteers and Subject Advisers. It is available to listen to on the u3a YouTube channel and is also available on podcasting platforms including Spotify, Google Podcasts and Apple Podcasts. Further details can be found at

 • The weekly math's challenge – the current challenge and those for all prior weeks, plus solutions, can be found at https://

 • Other learning activities –the current selection of activities can be found at

They also offer a number of workshops, webinars and interactive sessions delivered by members for members, which are free to join. We will highlight some of these on the National Event page here.  For full details of all National events click here.

This is the latest video from the u3a Trust. Filmed at the u3a Off the Wall event earlier this year, it is an example of the amazing things that can happen when members share skills with each other. 

The Trust is developing a digital strategy document. This video is a conversation with the chair of the digital strategy working group.

Following the Trust’s AGM on 6th October, a presentation was made by the Chair, Liz Thackray and the Vice-chair, Allan Walmsley about a possible re-structuring of the Board of Trustees. It was made clear that these were only suggestions and that consultation with the membership would be held before any draft proposals were formulated.

The following videos give some background to the discussion. If you have any questions you can email 

The video below, produced by the u3a Trust, highlights the benefits and opportunities available when joining a u3a.

The Trust has also produced a video which describes a typical local u3a, not all of the specific activities mentioned are currently provided by Tonbridge u3a.

The u3a radio podcast has now launched on podcast platforms.

Previously available to listen to on Youtube, members will now be able to listen on platforms including Spotify and Apple. Nick Bailey, part of the u3a radio team who put together the episodes each month, says 'this is something a lot of you have asked for. It will be a handy way to listen and we hope will help to spread the word of the u3a movement in its 40th year.'

In the January episode, the team discuss the Kindertransport learning initiative, talk to a member of u3a in Australia and hear about the milestone of 5,000 trees being planted in the u3a 40th anniversary wood.

Listen to the podcast on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. The episode can also still be listened to on our u3a YouTube channel, with captions.

Do you have a story you would like to share? If so please get in touch