If you had been a fly on the wall when Maitland Country Womens' Association meetings began 90 years ago you would have picked up on how formidable they were.
That's the impression branch president Barbara Heckman received when she took a look back at photos during the early years in the lead up to the branch's 90th birthday.
There were 128 members who met at homes because they didn't have a hall, and the ladies wore hats, long dresses and gloves. Back then it was all about advocating for the rights of women and children.
Fast forward 90 years and you won't find that kind of attire at meetings, but you'll still encounter the same enthusiasm for making a difference and advocating for change.
The branch's 20 members gathered at the CWA hall in Church Street on Wednesday for a high tea - with all the trimmings, to reflect upon the group's history and look toward the future.
It is clear there is a lot more to the group's role than making scones.
"We only have about 20 members now, but what we lack in numbers we make up for with enthusiasm," catering officer Christine Meyers said.
"We were the only CWA here and now there are three in our immediate area.
"We make a difference; at our annual conference we put forward motions that we want the government to look at, every year we support medical research, we have an emergency fund for bush fires, floods and drought, we were a pick up point for Drought Angels and we sent money directly to CWA in Murrurundi so they could give out vouchers."
President Barbara Heckman said it was an honour to lead the group during its 90th year. She said what members had achieved over the years was amazing, particularly during World War II.
"The ladies from Maitland worked hard making parcels to send overseas and they knitted socks for the soldiers," she said.
"The women didn't have anything for them in country areas, CWA was all about the rights of women and children. In photos of meetings they were formidable, the men would have been scared of them.
"We still have an important voice in the community today, especially about issues affecting rural and regional areas."
When the group formed most of the members were married women who made time for helping others while running their households and raising children.