Who we are and what we offer - Travel Talks

Search our site.
Go to content

Main menu:

Who we are and what we offer

The International Travel and Holidays Association

The I.T.H.A. aims to promote interest in national and international travel to both active and armchair travellers. Our meetings consist of illustrated talks covering all parts of the world, and speakers are drawn from recognised professional writers, photographers and journalists, our own members and travellers from across the country.

Members also benefit from an exchange of encounters, meet like minded people and share in travel camaraderie. The presentations may evoke happy memories of past journeys ... and inspire travellers to new destinations and experiences.

The Association was founded by Albert Windsor in 1953 and since then over seven hundred travel talks have been enjoyed by members. We have a membership of one hundred and fifty and have regular attendances of over one hundred.

Come as a visitor (charge £4*), or join us to become a full member (£20) and receive your unique 'Passport' membership card - it really is excellent value!
*Any visitor fees paid will count to your membership subscription should you decide to join.

The Committee membership:



Chris Buxton

Vice Chairman

Keith Buxton


Pauline Mason

Programme secretary

Joan Gaffiney


Eric Hodge

Technical Officer

David Swift


Les Mason

Membership Secretary

Julie Swift


Committee Members

Gill Greggor

David Stretch

Janet Lumby


Mike Lumby


Appy to become a member.
Please download the application form and return it by post with remittance,  or bring it with you at our next meeting.

Application form

The Traveller's Prayer

God of our beliefs: look down on us, your humble and obedient tourist servants, who are doomed to travel this earth taking photographs and videos, sending emails, using Twitter and Facebook, mailing post cards, buying souvenirs and walking around in drip dry underwear.

We beseech you, dear God, to see that our flight is not delayed because of a volcanic dust clouds, nor that our luggage is lost, and that our over-weight baggage which vastly exceeds our allowance, goes unnoticed.
We pray that the check-in staff do not laugh at our oversized cabin luggage, nor at the additional jumpers, coats, socks, waterproof coats and walking boots that we wear, as we check in on a hot day in the middle of summer!

In your mercy, protect us from surly and unscrupulous taxi drivers, avaricious porters, unlicensed English speaking guides and timeshare touts.

Give us this day divine guidance in the selection of our hotel, that we may find our reservation honoured, our rooms prepared, hot water running from the taps and a loo that flushes successfully.
Let those negative comments on Trip Advisor be wrong, and the excellent comments be correct.

We pray that our mobile phones work, and that there are no messages waiting from our children or our elderly parents which would force us to return prematurely.
Let our mobile phones, our laptops, and tablets as well as the internet, all work.
And we beseech you to ensure that we remember to take the charger!
Grant us a fully functioning Kindle, so that not bringing the dozen paperbacks with us shall not be regretted.

Lead us, we beseech you, to good and inexpensive restaurants, where the food is superb, and with options for meals which are vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, lactose free or nut free as required. Let the waiters be friendly and the wine be included in the price of the meal.

Give us the wisdom to tip correctly in currencies that we do not comprehend.
Forgive us for under-tipping out of ignorance and over-tipping out of fear.
Make the locals love us for who we are and not for what we contribute to their worldly goods.

We pray that those favourite packs of tea, coffee and biscuits which are packed in our luggage will survive the journey without spilling in our suitcase, nor crumbling so much as to be inedible.

Grant us the strength to tour the museums, the cathedrals, the palaces, the castles and the gardens listed as must do’s in Trip Advisor, Lonely Planet and the Michelin guide.
We pray that our research on the Internet be worthwhile, and not prove a figment of others’ imagination.

And if perchance we skip an historic monument to take a nap after lunch, have mercy on us, for our flesh is weak.

(This part of the prayer is for husbands).
Dear God, keep our wives from shopping sprees, and protect them from the “bargains” they do not need and cannot afford.
Lead them not into temptation for they know not what they do.

(This part of the prayer is for wives)
Almighty God, keep our husbands from admiring foreign women and comparing them to ourselves.
Save them from making fools of themselves in cafes and nightclubs.
Above all, please do not forgive them their trespasses, for they know exactly what they do.

(For all)
And when our travels are over, and we return to our loved ones,
grant us favour in finding someone who will look at our holiday videos and Photoshopped digital photos, and listen to our anecdotes, so that our lives as tourists shall not have been in vain.
This we ask of you our God, in the name of Thomas Cook, Lonely Planet, Saga and Lastminute.com

    From the Herald Tribune
Given to Joan Gaffiney by Jack Wells, a founder member at least 25 years ago.
Adapted by Pauline and Les Mason 2013

Back to content | Back to main menu