Since the autumn of 2016 the members of the Exploring the Short Story group have discussed a wide range of stories from the around the globe and closer to home, from the 1800s to the present day. Stories are specifically chosen by the convenor – with continual input by the members – to explore how different writers examined the societal issues they faced. By reading them, we gain a greater understanding of their time and our own, over a cup of coffee or tea, biscuits, always bars of chocolate, and with very lively discussion. As one member put it recently, we tend to ‘generally raise the decibel level in the building by a considerable amount.’