Zoom lecture for U3A group
The talk I gave to members of South Woodham Ferrers U3A via Zoom was a great success and demonstrates that this on-line facility is giving members of the organisation a chance to get involved in some U3A activities from the comfort of their own homes. For me it was also a chance to launch a new talk which I am pleased to say was well received.
All the talk about the demise of the High Street and way COVID is changing our shopping habits was an opportunity to look into the history of department stores, especially those with such well-known names as Harrods, Selfridges, Marks and Spencer John Lewis, Whiteleys and Fortnum and Mason. Research uncovered some fascinating facts, anecdotes and stories of tragedy as well as revealing something about the character of those who had once been small shopkeepers and risen to become internationally-known shopping magnates.
My presentation – CLICK, COLLECT AND GOODBYE TO THE HIGH STREET – reached back into the 17th and 18th centuries to find out more about how shopping habits changed and why department stores became so popular. Yet it wasn’t an unbroken story of success and growing profits. Many were hit by financial downturns while others failed to keep pace or accept some of the important shopping trends.
Coronavirus can be forgotten for an hour or two when Zoom brings people together – even at a distance. For me there is a bonus of being able to keep in touch with many of the organisations I have visited over the years, in schools, church halls and community centres.
Zoom technology is not scary! The process of downloading the app and following instructions is straight-forward. In many ways it is no different to me coming along to give a talk at a venue. With Zoom, you can see me, hear me and follow a PowerPoint visual show on your own computer. If you or your club haven’t stepped into a Zoom room yet then don’t wait outside any longer.