Forty eight members of our U3A  set off from Seaham to London to watch what was to be a wonderful evening of music, song, lasers, fireworks, cannon and gunfire as well as dance, with plenty of flag-waving thrown in for good measure . We were off to the Royal Albert Hall to watch a performance of Classical Spectacular. It was a long journey, road closures didn’t help, but with chocolate bars, a raffle, when everyone won a prize, as well as a Christmas Quiz, these helped pass the time. Some members laughed their way to London whilst partaking of liquid beverages and posh mince pies from Fenwicks! After a very rushed change of clothes and meal our coach driver, Andy, braved the traffic to ride into London and get us there on time, just.

We had wonderful seats very near the front of the arena, (stalls), where we could see everything that went on, even the white of the eyes of the brilliant conductor, John Rigby. The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Choral Society, British Imperial Band, Moscow Militia and Classical Spectacular Dancers were all magnificent. The tenor, baritone and violinist, with his violin made way back in 1782, only added to a superb night. Nessun Dorma was sung with great passion. A few folk jumped in their seats when the guns and cannons rang out during the 1812 Overture and George had a great view of the can can dancers! Jerusalem and Rule Britannia stirred up the crowd for frenzied flag-waving. Some people’s flags being bigger than others! The performance ended with a cascade of red, white and blue balloons falling upon us from above and seeming to explode very loudly when burst. The journey back to the hotel had us all talking about our own particular favourite parts and the Christmas lights and decorations, particularly Harrods, had us oohing and ahhing laughingly. We all slept well that night and after a hearty breakfast set off to visit Royal Windsor. The shops were a hit and money was spent before a refreshing stop for a beverage of our choosing. Some even managed to bribe the guards to view the Windsor Castle State Rooms.  Unfortunately, the Queen wasn’t in residence but later informed us that she would have only been pleased to offer us all afternoon tea, at a small price, as she wanted to hear more about Seaham Harbour U3A and the fun time we all have, and to know more about “Tommy”. All our members had a wonderful time together, friendship, fun and happiness filled the bus. We really did have a “Spectacular” experience. Well done the Royal Albert Hall. Thanks too to Doreen and gang who pestered to go on this outing; their recommendation gave great pleasure and joy to us all. Wonderful memories to share.


Comments made by members were many and varied, but all positive. They included:-

“A fantastic weekend that I’ll live with for a long time.

Absolutely fabulous darling!

Fab weekend, perfect.

Brilliant in every way.

Spectacular weekend, company first class, laughter and friendship all the way.

Outstanding performance, what’s next?

Marvellous, great trip.

A superb show, a lovely time, 10/10.

Amazing concert.

Truly Spectacular.


A lovely two days with a fabulous highlight event.

Excellent, can’t wait for the next one.

Excellent from start to finish.

A great opportunity to do something different.

FANTASTIC, fabulous, amazing, never to be forgotten, titillating, astounding, superb, tantalising, incredible, and charismatic.

A good time was had by all.

The magic of the music was truly wonderful.

Seats couldn’t have been better.

Magnificent concert.


Loved it!”

Double click on any image to enlarge