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Planet Myanmar - AGM & "A World Overturned"

11TH JUNE MEETING

Wednesday 11th June saw Maureen Baird-Murray launch her new book about her Burmese childhood: "A World Overturned".
But before that, the Society welcomed a new President: Sir Nicholas Fenn, GCMG, a top ex-diplomat with strong Myanmar connections.
Accepting the new title, Sir Nicholas first paid a heartfelt tribute to his predecessor, Lady Patricia Gore-Booth, who had been in place since November 1995. (Click here for excerpt)

The Society's Chairman, John Okell, then presented Lady Gore-Booth with a bouquet in recognition and gratitude for her devotion to the Society's interests. And she, not to be outdone by Sir Nicholas, said she had recognised his potential as long ago as 1959 - and that he would make a fine President to lead the Society into the next millenium.

At the Annual General Meeting, which followed, the annual report and accounts were approved, and the Society's Council and officers were elected.

And then it was time for Maureen Baird-Murray to talk about what led her to write a book about her childhood - part of it spent in a Burmese village, the home of the beautiful village girl her Irish father had married.

A review of this poignantly-written story can be found on the Books page. In conversation with former Hon Secretary of the Britain-Myanmar Society, Anna Allott, Maureen recalled the bewildering changes that accompanied the arrival of the Japanese in 1942. Her parents were gone - she did not find out until years later that they had both died - and she was a young child of mixed parentage in Kalaw with only the protection of Italian nuns to preserve her under Japanese rule. Many years later, she had the pleasure of tracing some of the other little girls who were then her friends, in different parts of the world.