Information on Societies
History: Established 1919
Patrons: HM The King of Sweden,
HRH The Duke of Edinburgh KG KT,
HE The Ambassador of Sweden
Membership: At the end of 2005 there were a total of 249 (2004:275) members, including 85 (97) Individual and 46 (61)
Family Memberships, 100 (101) Life and Honorary Members and 18 (16)
Country of origin of the members: Mainly Sweden & the UK.
Meetings: There are events for the members approximately 12 times a year (including the AGM), with no events in July or August. Although there is often an obvious Swedish connection, we take the view that members meeting up and getting to know each other is the key factor in our popular get-togethers. To facilitate this aim, the events are often combined with a lunch, or afternoon tea.
Newsletter: 3 times yearly.
Additional: The aims of our scholarships and awards are to enable young people from United Kingdom and Sweden to study or take part in cultural exchange programmes in both countries.
We have built up a small portfolio of annual scholarships in association with educational establishments. In addition to the major scholarships we are able to respond to requests for smaller sums for one off events. The major scholarships currently cover the areas of music, language studies, visual art and culinary art.
Danish Cultural Institute
Mission statement 2009:
"Bringing together Finns & Friends"
1) Brings together people and organisations with an interest in "Finnishness
2) Publishes a journal and maintains a website for the Finnish-British community
3) Organises and enables participation in cultural, social and educational events in the UK and Finland
4) Promotes wellbeing through supporting the Friendship Network, the Finnish Schools and other charities
5) Runs the travel agency Guild Travel to raise funds for the benefit of the Finnish-British community
History: Founded 7 January 1965 as the Finnish Church Guild (still the official name).
Adopted working name Finn-Guild in the 1990s to better reflect the organisation's widened work.
Chairman: Mrs Maarit Virenius-Varela, Croydon
President: Minister Tanja Jääskeläinen,
Executive Committee members represent various parts of the UK.
Membership: 12.000 Finns and friends of Finland from over 20 nationalities.
Magazine/Newsletter: Quarterly Horisontti Magazine (also available on our website)www.finn-guild.org
Communication, contact person:
General Membership Secretary:
Annual fee £25 family, £15 individual, £10 seniors, students.
Scholarships for student exchanges. Grants for regional events around the UK.
Several Finnish evening courses and intensive study days.
Finnish Friendship Network training meetings.
DVD and book library. Advisory days.Representing the UK Finns in the Finnish Expatriate Parliament.
Finn-Guild (a registered charity) owns a travel agency GUILD TRAVEL LTD that specialises in travel to Finland and the neighbouring countries in Scandinavia, the Baltic and Russia.
All profits from the agency are channelled back to the Finnish-British community via Finn-Guild's work.
The easiest way to support the Finnish-British community is to use our specialist travel services.
Hampshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society (HASS)
History: The Anglo-Scandinavian Society was formed in the summer of 1973, following the closure of the Scandinavian (owned by the Norwegian church and run by a Swedish priest) Seamen's Church in Southampton. The Society was re-named Hampshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society in 1996.
Membership: Currently around 110 families - mainly Danish, Norwegian, Swedish and British (who have family connections or an interest in Scandinavia) plus a few Finns. Historically most members lived in the Southampton/Eastleigh/Winchester area. Over the years membership has spread throughout Hampshire and into Dorset, West Sussex and Surrey. Our overall membership tends to remain fairly stable with around 15 leaving and a similar number joining each year.
Newsletter: Published following each meeting in January, March, May, September and November. An increasing number of members receive copies by e-mail.
Website: www.hass.org.uk (part of the website only accessed by user name and password).
Membership fee: An annual membership subscription of £10 for families and £7.50 for singles. Around 20% pay by standing order.
Additional: There are a number of sub-groups (eg Swedish ladies luncheon club) which meet every so often. From time to time we arrange talks such as one recently given by one of our members.
Contact: Vibeke Smith-Petersen
Meetings: AGM and films or theatre with Scandinavian connection.
Mission statement: 'The Norwegian-Scottish Association aims to promote and consolidate friendship and understanding between Norwegians and people with Norwegian connections or interests living in Scotland, and to further cultural and other relations between Scotland and Norway.'
History: Founded 1966 in Edinburgh.
Membership: 101 members.
Meetings: Monthly meetings on first Tuesday of October, November, January, February,
March & April.
Additional: Juletrefest and 17 mai celebrations, summer outing on first Saturday of June, autumn outing on second Tuesday in September.
Orkney Norway Friendship Association(ONFA)
History: Formed in November 1978 because of considerable interest in an connections with Norway - both historically and present day.
Membership: About 150
Meetings: Monthly August - April.
Magazine or newsletter: ONFA News (information about Society activities and members) twice yearly.
Membership fee: £4 single, 8 family, £10 corporate
Additional: December: a tree-lighting ceremony, and Saint Lucy Festival in the Cathedral (followed by supper and dance in the town hall). 17th May: service in St Olav's Cemetery, concert in the Cathedral, procession and speeches, Constitution Day Dinner and dance; participation from Norwegians sailing over from Bergen and Stavanger.
Scottish Norwegian Society (Glasgow)
History: Founded in Dumfries in 1941 by the many Norwegians training in the area during the War. The present Scottish Norwegian Society is the surviving Glasgow branch, formed in 1943, of that Society. HM King Olav V became the Society's Patron in 1951 and was guest of honour at a Dinner in Glasgow in 1966 to mark the 25th anniversary of the Society's institution.
Object: To promote and consolidate friendship and understanding between the Scottish and Norwegian peoples and to further cultural, commercial, and other relations between Scotland and Norway.
Membership: Approx. 60
Annual subscriptions: Local: £10(£5 for additional family member), Country & Student:
£6(£3 for additional family member), Corporate: £25.
Meetings: Monthly meetings on second Wednesday of October, November, January, February & March (including the Oddveig Røsegg Memorial Lecture).
Social evenings: Pratekveld, Juletrefest, 17. mai & Sankthans
Newsletter: Monthly from September to June.
Additional: Norwegian ladies have an informal "Dameklubb" which meets monthly.
The Norwegian Seamen's Church has regular church services and the SNS help organise the Church's Annual Christmas Fair in November.
Myspace page: www.myspace.com/scottish_swedish_society
A. To foster and preserve good relations between Scotland and Sweden and to assist in the improvement of social, cultural, linguistic and artistic exchanges between the two countries.
B. To render assistance and advice to those persons seeking to develop good relations to both countries.
C. To honour those persons who, in the opinion of the Society, have distinguished themselves in the fostering and maintenance of good relationships between both countries.
History: Founded 1981.
Membership: 173 adults and 42 children.
Committee: 10 Committee Members
Magazine or newsletter: Several times a year.
Membership fee: Single OAP: £8-50; Single Person: £11-00; OAP Couple: £12-00; Family/Couple: £14-50
Additional: We arrange various events such as Pea Soup Lunch, Lucia Service (followed by a Christmas Bazaar, coffee and cakes), Midsummer Celebration, Talks and Pub Evenings. The Society has a 'Children's corner' for the young members and a singing group.
Shetland Norwegian Friendship Society
Mission statement: To promote friendship between Shetlanders and Norwegians.
History: The Shetland Norwegian Friendship Society was initially established in the 1960s but after a short period of inactivity in the early 1970s it has become firmly established as a substantial society in Shetland. When initially established some of the Norwegian members were men who had served in the Norwegian forces during World War II and had married Shetland women and settled in Shetland after the end of the war. Unfortunately we have no Norwegian members at present, though many of our present members were young people during the war years and have fond memories of Norwegian servicemen.
Membership: Approximately 100. The members are all Shetland residents although not all are originally from Shetland.
At present the association has an aging membership with few members below
fifty years of age. Recruitment of new, younger members is difficult; any suggestions from other societies on this subject are welcome.
Meetings: Monthly meetings from September until April when it is customary to have a slide show and talk or video/DVD
presentation, followed by coffee and something home-baked. The programme is not restricted to Norwegain items but includes also general talks. Attendance is 50 % of the membership.
17th May: the laying of flowers on Norwegian war graves in Lerwick cemetery where a short service in held. Most years any Norwegian yachtsmen who are in the Lerwick harbour attend the service. It also arranges for floral tributes to be placed on other Norwegian war graves in other parts of Shetland. Following the service a supper dance is held in LerwickTown Hall (generally attended by 120 - 150 people). Magazine or newsletter: Twice yearly:
i) late August with information on anything interesting in the summer, and content of the four meetings September-December; ii) December with information about forthcoming meetings, appointment of the committee at the AGM (November), and any other matters of interest from the AGM.
Additional: Many members visit Norway annually, partly as the result of a local coach operator organising tours to various parts of the country including Svalbard. Because of changes to the sailing schedule of the ferry operating between the Faroe Islands, Shetland, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, fewer members will be able to travel this year to Norway.
In 2005 the association organised a successful tour for members to Bomlo (with its Shetland Society) and the Hardanger Fjord.
In April 2010 we hosted 'COSCAN goes to...' with 33 participants from various societies.
Message: Would it be possible in some way to compile a list of video/DVD material which can be borrowed from Scandinavian organisations, eg Embassies, tourist offices etc or speakers? This would help considerably when planning the programme as in a small community it is difficult to find new material.
Please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
York Anglo-Scandinavian Society (YASS)
Mission statement: York AngloScandinavian Society (YASS) is working to promote friendship and understanding between the British and Scandinavian peoples.
History: Founded in 1960.
Membership: 73 members
Newsletter: 4-6 times yearly ('selected cultural news' from the Scandinavian countries).
Membership fee: Ordinary members £10; juniors/students £5
Additional: We have a singing group, two reading circles, and a handicraft group.
A focal point is raising money for the
COSCAN Travel Fund.
Over several years we have participated in the Jorvik Viking Festival (exhibitions, talks, and other activities). We have made a cookery book (sold out) and sell home-made cards (from prints made by the late member Columba James). The booklet Fifty years of YASS and the DVD Moments of Yass can be ordered through: email@example.com
Member Societies 2013
Anglo-Danish Society – firstname.lastname@example.org
Anglo-Finnish Society – email@example.com
Anglo-Scandinavian Society of Newcastle – firstname.lastname@example.org
Anglo Swedish Society – email@example.com
Danish Church in London – firstname.lastname@example.org
Danish Club – email@example.com
Danish Cultural Institute – firstname.lastname@example.org
Danish YWCA, London – email@example.com
Devon & Somerset Anglo Scandinavian Society – firstname.lastname@example.org
Finn-Guild – email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
Grieg Society UK - email@example.com
Hampshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society – firstname.lastname@example.org
Hertfordshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society – email@example.com
Irish Scandinavian Club – firstname.lastname@example.org
Midlands Scandinavians– email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
Northants Anglo-Scandinavian Society (NA-SS) – email@example.com
Norwegian Scottish Association – firstname.lastname@example.org
Orkney Norway Friendship Association(ONFA) -email@example.com
Scandinavian Klubb of Lincolnshire (SKOL) - firstname.lastname@example.org
Scandinavian Society at University of York – email@example.com
Scottish Norwegian Society (Glasgow) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Scottish-Swedish Society –email@example.com
Shetland Norwegian Friendship Society – firstname.lastname@example.org
York Anglo-Scandinavian Society (YASS)– email@example.com
‘What the others do’
Each member society in CoScan naturally has its own identity, shaped by how it’s organised (whether covering all Scandinavian countries or only one), traditions, and the individuals running the particular society. Therefore we are all a bit different. On the other hand we are similar in that we all share the same goal, which mainly is to offer expatriates a link with their home country and to provide both general and specific information about Scandinavia to anybody interested.
The list below, largely based on information given on societies’ websites, may give you a gist of what is going on. Feed-back is welcome!, as this is something that I would like to develop into something more comprehensive.
CoScan Chairman: Eva Robards
Anglo-Danish Society arranges lectures, outings, social gatherings and other events. Outings include concerts and visits to art institutions. Christmas is celebrated with a party.
The Society also administersscholarship funds to help Danish students visiting the UK or British students visiting Denmark (advanced or post-graduate studies).
Meetings cover various subjects related to Finland and take the form of talks, lectures, film or video shows, visits to concerts and exhibitions. There are also excursions and the occasional party. The Society also provides information about Finnish events in Britain.
Anglo-Norse Society offers talks on a wide variety of subjects from aspects of Norwegian political life and its economy to travel and history, supplemented by quiz evenings and showings of Norwegian films. There are also special events, such as visits to the theatre, concerts and exhibitions.
The Society also awards grants for British or Norwegian students on courses in each other’s country. The Society also helps students and others obtain Norwegian educational books at reasonable cost.
Anglo-Scandinavian Society of Newcastlehas an annual programme of cultural events, social evenings and traditional get-togethers, based on showing what makes Scandinavia different. Recurring events include the Welcome party (when the new season starts), the IKEA julmiddag, Lucia, and film evenings.
Some 12-15 events of interest to our members are organized every year and are often combined with a lunch, dinner or evening drinks. Members meeting up and getting to know each other is the key factor in these get-togethers, although there is often an obvious Swedish connection.
The Society funds a number of schemes, such as for Swedish post-graduate students to attend the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, a glass and ceramics exchange program between the Royal College of Art and Konstfack, and for a student to spend time at the world famous
Fat Duck in Bray.
Danish Church in London
After the Sunday service, a homemade Danish lunch is on offer. Christmas, carnival (Fastelavn) and Midsummer (Skt. Hans) are celebrated, and in May there is a bazaar. Other activities are Danish lessons, a book club, a mums & toddlers’ group, a sewing club, concerts with Danish artists, and new Danish films are shown.
Danish Club organises at least one event per month. In addition, a number of regular events take place, such as monthly bridge sessions and biannual golf meetings (spring and autumn). Other Club fixtures include a celebration of the patron HM Queen Margrethe’s birthday, St. Martin’s Eve, Danish Christmas lunches, and network evenings for the professional members.
Danish Cultural Instituteinitiates and supports cultural projects which promote either Danish culture in Great Britain or British culture in Denmark. The Danish Cultural Institute can assist in contact mediation, finding venues, organizing seminars or simply answering general queries on Danish and British culture. Events include concerts, conferences, exhibitions, debates, field trips, dance, theatre, film screening, and Danish courses.
Danish YWCAhelps young Danes on temporary stays in London, runs an au pair agency, and provides practical advice and information for the young Danes.
Devon & Somerset Anglo Scandinavian Society celebrates anything Scandinavian with monthly meetings covering talks, visits, theatres, dinners and others, mostly in the Taunton area.
Finn-Guild is a countrywide organisation that offers language studies, information and training days, supports Finnish schools, runs a video and DVD library and publishes Horisontti magazine. The travel agency Guild Travel raises funds for the benefit of the Finnish-British community.
Grieg Society UK
Hampshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society (HASS)
The activities of the Society is mainly aimed at maintaining the Scandinavian traditions and promoting our cultural inheritance including sharing this with our children and friends.
The highlights of the yearly events include the midsummer celebrations and the annual Christmas parties including a julbord for the adults and Lucia and a visit by father Christmas for the children.
Hertfordshire Anglo-Scandinavian Society has a wide ranging programme of both Scandinavian and local topics. Meetings include a talk or activity followed by a chat over refreshments. Society traditions include our Julefest celebration in December, and an annual summer outing.
Irish Scandinavian Club arranges pub evenings, hill walking, a Scandinavian food evening,
Midsummer fest, 17 May celebrations, and Christmas party. Some events take place on a monthly basis, such as the pub evenings and hill walks, while others are yearly events.
Midlands Scandinavians’ activities include films or theatre with Scandinavian connection.
Northants Anglo Scandinavian Society (NA-SS)provides talks (not necessarily on a Scandinavian subject), social events (such as quiz nights and ‘how some of our members ended up in the UK’), outings (such as walks, car treasure hunts and guided tours). Traditional festivities include the annual dinner and a Scandinavian Christmas dinner.
Norwegian Scottish Association
Meetings are held approximately 8 times a year, in and around Edinburgh, and take the form of social gatherings such as Juletrefest and Constitution Day celebrations, illustrated talks during the winter months, and summer outings.
Orkney Norway Friendship Association
The programme of events is reflecting all things Norwegian, such as celebrating the 17 May (Norwegian Constitution Day) and at Christmas a Norwegian tree outside the Cathedral is lit. Visitors from Norway are particularly welcome.
Scandinavian Klubb of Lincolnshire (SKOL)
SKOL is unique in its policy of accepting as members only people with some family ties to Scandinavia. Mortens aften, Julebord, Juletraefest, and Midsummer are events on the programme, and links with the Danish Seamen’s Church in Hull are close.
Scandinavian Society at University of York
Scottish Norwegian Society (Glasgow) provides talks (including the Oddveig Rösegg Memorial Lecture), social evenings and outings. Recurring events are the Christmas fair (julebasar) and Christmas party (Juletrefest).
A main purpose of the society is for Swedish members to communicate in their native language (the benefit of being part of a homogenous group as opposed to societies with all Scandinavian countries represented).The Swedish festivals Lucia and Midsommar are celebrated. Other events are the annual Pea soup evening, coffee mornings, Swedish film nights, a Swedish book club, and activities for children (incl Swedish language classes for these).
Shetland Norwegian Friendship Society
Talks are not restricted to Norwegian topics but includes also general areas. Monthly meetings from September until April. Annual ceremony on 17th May is the laying of flowers on Norwegian war graves at Lerwick cemetery, where a short service is held. This is followed by a supper dance in Lerwick Town Hall.
York Anglo Scandinavian Society (YASS)focusses on Scandinavian topics for the talks (trying to make sure that all five countries are represented each season) but offers also a range of social gatherings – and never forgets either Sankt Hans or Lucia. Jorvik Viking Festival.
During the last decade collaboration with the annual Jorvik Viking Festival in York has resulted in talks, exhibitions and demonstrations for the general public.
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