Magnificence in Midlife & Beyond – what we got up to!

On Saturday 12 November 2016 we held the inaugural Mutton Club Magnificence in Midlife & Beyond get-together.  It was great fun! The photos below are by our Parkour expert Julie Angel.

Participant and fabulous Flock member, Han Dunsterville, had this to say about the day. We couldn’t have said it better, so here are her words. Many readers asked to see what we were up to so if you’d like to see a video of the day just click on the video image above!

By Han Dunsterville.

I’d like to give a little review of the day’s shenanigans on Saturday for those that weren’t there, to encourage folks to come along to the next one (and there *will* be a next one, won’t there? Pleeease?)

I woke far too early on a Saturday for my complexion but nevertheless had a happy trip up to London from Canterbury, where I was met with awful rain. Who ordered that? Wasn’t me! I was a wee bit early but soon lots of ladies were herding themselves together, chatting and buzzing with abandon.

Soon Mutton Club founder Rachel Lankester welcomed us all and introduced us to our first speaker, the lovely Michelle Cannon, who showed us a few videos done by schoolchildren on their mobiles, a project she has devised in order to develop their literacy levels – and then it was our turn! We were all up on our feet creating little scenarios to film on our mobiles before editing the clips together.


My first attempt at downloading the app was rather funny as it turned out to be a Romanian version! Typically, having located and installed the correct app, we then discovered my screen was teenyweeny and editing was impossible – and so was transferring the videos to another delegate’s phone so someone else could try! But never fear – I have appropriated my partner’s tablet and will be completing it later. 

Next up was Fiona Ingham, a colour and style consultant, who talked us through the principles of identifying one’s ‘season’ – cool colours v. warm colours, bold v. muted – and outlined several body types – gamine, classic, natural etc – which influence what kind of style of clothing to go for. I am now itching to get this done for myself – AND this is absolutely perfect for my mum who (at the age of 73) has been thinking about things she can do for ages!


Two lucky ladies got ‘done’ – Fiona showed us how the cool colours v warm could really make a difference. Neither woman said she wore much makeup, but Fiona had them both put on a suitable lipstick; the difference really was quite startling. For those who have started to go grey, Fiona pointed out that having lipstick is a great way of freshening up the face. Find out more at House of Colour.

Our final speaker before lunch was Kathy O’Brien, who gave us a wonderful talk about the Duke of Edinburgh awards and how they empower and inspire. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the awards, so Kathy talked to us about some of the adventures that people have been having as part of the ‘DofE Diamond Challenges‘, including a lady who skydived (skydove?) for the first time at the age of something like 90! Wowee!


Lunch saw us busily circulating trying to complete our ‘Mutton Club Bingo’ cards. It was great seeing everyone networking and connecting with one another! And the food wasn’t bad either. 


Straight after lunch and it was Suzi Grant’s turn – telling us all about her journey towards health and the positive choices that she has made. A really thorough guide through many foods and powders to incorporate into one’s life, such as turmeric and soya, accompanied by many additional facts and anecdotes, leading to a buzzy and animated conversation afterwards between us all. Go check out her website Alternative Ageing!


Now our very own Rachel took to the podium, with a short talk about aspects of ageism we must all be aware of and challenge – and how they particularly pertain to women. She was very candid in some of the things she told us about her life, but when she said ‘This is what 50 looks like’ she garnered a huge round of applause and whoops and cheers – go Rachel! 50 looks awesome nowadays – as does 60… and 70… and 80… and…!!


After a short break, we were all invigorated by Julie Angel who had us up and moving as she introduced us to Parkour and how it has changed her attitude to movement, fitness and embracing challenge. For those that have never heard of it, it was developed by immigrant populations in Paris as a way to get fit and stay in control (watch this video to see how Parkour experts use the urban environment to get around) – but hey, why not read Julie’s own book, Breaking the Jump about the history ?


Julie explained how she initially took around six months to pluck up the courage to begin her Parkour journey, and had to relearn ‘I can’t do that’ to ‘I can’t do that – YET’. It was inspiring to hear how Parkour is practised and rehearsed in order to expand the range of movements a body can produce. If you have a class near you – go try it!

Our day was rounded off by the delectable Renée Denyer from Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium and her purple velvet and gold vulva ‘puppet’ Rosie!


Our first ‘task’ was to go round the room saying what term we use for our ‘down belows’, which was enlightening and broke the ice wonderfully! Using this anatomically accurate object to explain to us aspects of women’s sexuality was funny and delightful – and got us all chuckling. Explaining to us that women have twice as many nerve endings on the clitoris as men do on the end of their penis, she made us all giggle in recognition when she described how men press it ‘like a doorbell’ – especially when we noticed the poor AV guy sitting in the corner! Well, he must have learnt a fair bit.

After using ‘Rosie’ to show where the G-spot is located, Renée then went on to hand round a choice selection of vibrators, toys and erotic books for us to handle (on our noses or hands, thank you!), all the while giving tips on how to expand our repertoire of pleasure. A fantastic talk and the perfect way to conclude the day!



Many many HUGE thanks to Rachel for all the organising, cat-herding and networking… let’s all raise a glass in appreciation!