Where’s my nearest club?
Cranfield Speakers meets at Cranfield University (Building 33), between Milton Keynes and Bedford
Eldergate Toastmasters meets at the National Badminton Centre in Loughton Lodge near Central Milton Keynes.
North Bucks Speakers meets in Willen, to the east of Milton Keynes.
For a full list of clubs please visit the Toastmasters District 71 (United Kingdom) web site where you can search for clubs using an interactive map.
Do I have to wear a red coat?
No! The Toastmasters organization is nothing to do with being a Master of Ceremonies at a wedding or public function. It is about learning every day public speaking skills to use at work, at home and in life. You don’t need a red coat, and we never shout “Order!”.
Do I have to join straight away?
No. You are welcome to come along to any club meeting as a guest, just to see what happens and to decide whether membership is right for you. There is no pressure to join and you can come back as a guest as many times as you like, over as long a period as you like.
How can I come along as a Guest to a meeting?
Check the meeting schedule to see when the next meeting is that you wish to attend. You can turn up on the night, though we would recommend calling in advance so that you can be greeted on the door and given any necessary directions to find the venue.
Why would I want to join Toastmasters?
Everyone joins Toastmasters for their own personal reasons. You would join Toastmasters because you can see a benefit to yourself in improving your confidence and ability to speak in public. You will also get to practice a variety of other skills at Toastmasters, including running meetings and evaluating other people’s speeches. Toastmasters also run regular training courses on such subjects as Team Building, Leadership, Evaluation and more, which each member attends. There are also speech and evaluation contests which you can enter too.
What sort of people attend?
We have a variety of people from all walks of life and all ages in Toastmasters. Though we are a diverse group, we all have one thing in common, we want to improve our ability to speak in public. Whether you are a trainer,a businessman, a parent or a salesman, you can benefit from improving your ability to speak in public.
What will I gain from Toastmasters?
You will improve your ability to speak in public, which can help you in a wide variety of ways. This can help you in your career. It can help you in your personal life. It can help you boost your confidence.
What happens in a meeting?
A typical meeting lasts for about two hours, including a break. During the first half of the meeting the prepared speeches are delivered and the topics session held (this helps Toastmasters learn to think on their feet). In the second half, the speeches and the meeting are evaluated, and ribbons given out to the best speaker, most humorous speaker and so on.
The agendas are very detailed because they set out the time allowed for each part of the meeting. This Sample Agenda will give you an idea of the structure of a meeting.
Why do you do all this evaluation?
We all attend Toastmasters in order to learn to speak better. In order to achieve this objective, we need feedback in order to improve our abilities. The evaluation is a vital part of the meeting in order for the speakers to improve their skills and to develop. The evaluations are always delivered in a positive manner with the aim of helping the speaker become even better. At the end of each speech, every member is encouraged to provide feedback to the speaker on the forms provided.
Do I have to take on a role every meeting?
No, it is not necessary that you do so, though you will find you get more from a meeting the more involved you are in it. Each member should take each role at least once a year. You will discover that with each different role you learn a new set of skills. For example, as Grammarian or Grunt Counter, you learn to improve your listening skills.
How Much Does Membership Cost?
Cranfield Speakers: There is a joining fee of £25 and then a 6-monthly membership sub of £42.
Eldergate Toastmasters: There is a joining fee of £25 and then a 6-monthly membership sub of £48.
North Bucks Speakers: There is a joining fee of £25 and then a 6-monthly membership sub of £48.