For our last meeting Roger had booked a speaker, but unfortunately
he failed to turn up and we therefore had to organise an impromptu
quiz. This was run by Marian and Eileen, after Roger had hastily returned
home to get a set of quiz questions. In the event the evening was
a great success with much fun and laughter, due in no small measure
to our quiz master and score keeper. There were no winners and no
losers, thanks to much good humoured prompting!
Our New Brochures
We have already found our new brochures useful to send out to potential
new members and to people who offer donations. Suki Douglas of Neurocare
has over 100 and will distribute these around the General Hospital,
where they can be seen by the public. In our last newsletter we asked
if sufferers and carers could keep an open eye for other places where
they could be displayed, such as chemists or doctors surgeries. Rather
disappointingly there was a nil response, so please think about this
and if you have any ideas give Roger a call on 731145.
Social Get-Together at Corbiere Phare
This outing on Friday evening 31st May was a great success and the
weather and also the timing were perfect. After the recent miserable
weather we forget that we have ever seen the sun, but on this occasion
it shone brilliantly and we had a window table, where we could see
the sun going down over Corbiere. We were well served with a good
choice of food and for some of us it was an interesting new venue,
in the large new dining room with wonderful views. As usual the society
paid for the meal and sufferers and carers paid for their own drinks
and contributed to staff gratuities. This is a place where hopefully
we can encourage Eileen to make a return booking!
We bank with Lloyds TSB and Roger usually pays in at the town branch
whilst Eileen normally goes to Five Oaks. Recently however Roger went
to pay in at Five Oaks and was astonished to see the cashier stamp
the paying in book before counting the many bags of copper and silver
from collecting boxes. When asked why she did this the cashier replied
that she knew the lady who paid in for Parkinsons always balanced
perfectly and she assumed therefore it was bound to be correct. This
was not good banking practice but it was a compliment to the Society
and especially to the efficiency of Eileen. Incidentally it is useful
to know this bank is ideal for the disabled or anyone with mobility
problems as you can drive right up to the door.
Leading on from the topic of banking and small change, Roger is in
charge of all our collecting boxes and empties all of these, except
for about two that Eileen does and three that Betty Grihault deals
with. We have lost two sites recently with the closure of Besant's
shops and also two others with the closure of chemists within Spar
shops. When however Roger was in Fortuna last week he spotted a till
without a collecting box and therefore found a new site for a PDS
box. Please keep your eyes open for any new shops or other business
openings, or indeed any existing shop/business where we could have
a collecting box. In the past our members have not responded to doing
this but hopefully someone reading this will take notice and we can
replace the lost sites.
28.5.02 Raffle/Communicare At our meeting members bought tickets totalling
28.5.02 Smartie Appeal donation amounted to £16.50
Card sales for April 2002 came to £65.58
1.6.02 Car Boot Pitch/Wanderers Football Club
Sale of Bric-a Brac, Books & Clothes £73.40
Thanks to Hedley & Lorraine for helping Eileen7.6.02 Bingo Night/Devils
84 supporters raised £316.50
"50 Club" Draw
The first draw took place at our monthly meeting at Communicare on
28th May 2002. Results as follows:-
1st prize £20 Ticket No 29
2nd prize £10 Ticket No 12
3rd prize £5 Ticket No 13
Valma Le Feuvre
Eileen would like to thank everyone for supporting this fundraiser.
It is fully subscribed and a profit of £290.00 will be made
when the draw ends in October.
Our next meet will be on Thursday 27th June at 11.00 a.m, and we will
again try petanque, which was rained off earlier in the year.
Lunch will be organised again at the L'Auberge Du Nord and Eileen
will be asking you to pay £5.00 towards it, the Society will
pay the rest. Please phone Eileen on 737128 by Monday 24th June if
you would like to go along. Everybody is welcome and transport can
On Tuesday 9th July at 12.30 p.m. we will have lunch at the Pomme
D'Or Carvery at the Weighbridge. This will be free to sufferers and
carers. Please phone Eileen by Monday 1st July if you would like to
Saturday 29th June 11 a.m. 4 p.m Card stall at Howard Davis
Farm, Trinity re:- Trinity School P.T.A. Help urgently needed as Hedley,
Eileen & Marian have another commitment for the Society to go
Friday 5th July 8 p.m Bingo at Devil's Hole, St. Mary. Everyone welcome.
As enjoyed by Eileen & Alan (A sufferer - carer and the driver)
On 8th May 10 sufferers and 6 carers set off for a weeks holiday in
Torquay, funded by the Society. As a carer I was asked to contribute
the very small amount of £100.00, and Alan went and all I had
to do for the week was drive and have a good time. I'm extremely grateful
to Roger for being a wonderful navigator, his eyes were 25 yards ahead
of mine all the time.
As a group everyone looks after everyone else so thanks to you all
for looking after Alan and allowing me to enjoy the driving.
Whilst I'm the one who makes you all laugh and does the silly things
to help you have a good time little praise goes to Roger. Without
his input and efforts in organising everything i.e. flights, hotel
accommodation, with any special requirements, excursions etc. we wouldn't
be able to have a holiday at all. Thanks Roger and jolly well done.
Everyone feels that this trip was the best yet.
Thank you everyone for your company, good humour and for being willing
to try everything we asked you to do. Thank you to the Society for
paying for us to have a wonderful time.
Eileen & Alan Smith
Torquay Trip - Roger's Thoughts
When at a committee meeting we first discussed a holiday for 2002
I said that as I had organised all the previous holidays I would be
happy to drive the mini-bus this year if someone else would do all
the organising, but there were no volunteers for this and thus members
were landed with me again organising things. Eileen said that she
enjoyed the driving as part of the holiday and the navigating side
of things is something I am well used to, having spent 10 years working
in the U.K. and driving everyday to different destinations. One of
my first thoughts on the holiday is that we should all be grateful
to the late Thomas Kidd, who as a local benefactor put Jersey branch
in funds to the extent of paying 100% of the cost of the Torquay trip.
Early in the year I said in the newsletter that we would be going
to Cornwall and visiting the Eden Project and I was close to finalising
arrangements for this when Marian told me that she had been approached
by several members who felt that Eden would be too strenuous an excursion
for our members to undertake. Coupled with this I discovered that
this year there were no longer flights available to Plymouth from
Jersey. I had received help and advice from Richard and Wendy Grainger,
who have lived in Cornwall, and they gave me a list of possible resorts
to stay at and also excursions and Richard advised me to enquire about
chartering a small aeroplane to fly to Newquay.
|| I then wrote to four
airlines and received some prices, before Marian's timely intervention.
This I now regard as a blessing in disguise, because the party we
took this year was that much older and less able than in previous
years and when we got to Paignton Zoo for example we had to use five
wheelchairs and it was hard going as the zoo covers about 75 acres
of terrain with a lot of uneven paths and small hills.
Fixing the dates of the holiday was a little more
difficult this year because apart from finding out the best deals
with the airline and the availability of hotel rooms I also had to
fit in with dates (if possible) to suit the time that one of the party
could have off from work and another person wanted to avoid about
two weeks or so when she would be on a separate holiday and needed
time to prepare for the Torquay holiday.
Some years ago we had a trip to Southampton where the hotel was only
mediocre and really the quality of the hotel is one of the most important
elements of the holiday. I now send away for a lot of hotel brochures
before selecting any one and I ask for sample menus and when I have
narrowed down the choice to half a dozen I then telephone with a list
of queries and gauge their response. It was the helpful attitude of
the hotel that resulted in my selecting Corbyn Head this year and
I think everyone agreed that it was probably the best hotel that we
have had on any of our trips. To suit our needs a hotel has to have
obviously the right number of double bedded, twin bedded and single
rooms and also either a lift or some ground floor rooms for the less
able bodied. We also need to have a good lounge or lounges so that
our members can enjoy a quiz evening or a card school, without troubling
other guests and some hotels that I considered could not provide this.
Adequate parking for the mini-bus is essential and centrally located
hotels cannot always provide this, whereas Corbyn Head had plenty
of space. Then some of our party had special needs, as for example
one person needed a walk-in shower, rather than a shower above a bath.
It was interesting that one of our committee, Nancy Le Brun, was with
a separate group of holiday makers in Torquay when we were there and
this was as part of a package organised by a tour operator, rather
than separately booked in the way that we do. Nancy was not happy
with the food or the hotel and when we were there I passed this hotel
and I noticed that it looked a little run down. In contrast I think
the food at Corbyn Head was outstanding, as was the cleanliness and
the service and attention and the committee have agreed that I should
write to the hotel to thank them for all they did for us, including
details such as the ramp provided for our wheelchairs. It is not every
hotel where the manager and chef turn out to wave goodbye as you leave!
The access to the snooker room in the adjoining sister hotel was another
bonus, enabling Geoff, Graham, Jack and Clive to enjoy several games.
Where else would you get five and a half hours free and uninterrupted
use of a snooker room?
The excursions I had planned out before we left Jersey, by reading
guide books and visiting the library. I think everyone enjoyed the
variety and in one of the "Thank you" letters we received
it was said that they all worked like clockwork, which was nice to
hear. Peter told us, when we were already in Torquay, that he had
to travel north for a funeral and we managed to work things so that
we were able to include Peter in the Cockington excursion, which was
only a five minute drive from the hotel and also the station and we
then dropped Peter off at the station before lunch. It was good to
see that Peter coped with the arduous trip on his own to Stockport
In the first day or so Marian, Joyce and myself walked into Torquay
and visited the Tourism Office and it was here that I picked up details
of Buckfast Abbey, which was included in our tour of Dartmoor and
well worth a visit, with the adjacent small shopping complex. At Tourism
I also collected details of available theatre shows and realised that
there was a potential problem with shopping in Torquay, because the
main street is on a fairly steep hill. Neither Tourism nor the hotel
reception were much use in suggesting a parking place at the top of
the hill, so that our group could walk down rather than up. Fortunately
however I found a telephone number for a disabled organisation, who
told me where we could leave the mini-bus. If we had left this to
chance and parked around the harbour it would have been impossible
for our group to walk very far up the main street and certainly not
with Alan in a wheelchair.
It was good on the holiday to see the camaraderie within the group
and for example Peter and Jack helping one another and at the zoo
we had members helping to push the extra wheelchairs. Thanks are especially
due to Valma and Gladys for looking after Ivy, who would never have
been able to cope alone on the Torquay shopping trip.
Two things that were unplanned and left to chance were the two pub
lunches and in both cases we were given excellent food, service and
attention. The plates of moules are still being spoken about! Another
important element in the holiday, over which we have no control, was
the weather and this could hardly have been better for the time of
year. The trip to the theatre this year however was not as good as
others we have had, albeit that some of our party did enjoy it.
Another of the most important elements in any holiday is the choice
of resort and certainly Torquay was popular with our group and it
offered us a great deal of variety. It was also within less than an
hours drive from the airport and in fact only on the Dartmoor trip
did we spend any appreciable time in the mini-bus. Eileen was told
by the hire car firm that we only covered 113 miles in the week, which
was good for all of us and made for a more relaxing holiday, especially
for Eileen as our driver. The trips that we have away are designed
so that sufferers and carers have no worries or hassles with making
arrangements and have only to pack a suitcase and provide us with
a list of their medication. Luckily so far we have never had any serious
medical problems when we have been away and long may that continue.
Finally I would like to thank Eileen for again acting as our driver
and also for booking the taxis to Jersey airport and holding a cash
float. This year incidentally, unlike previous trips, I was able to
use a credit card almost everywhere, including pubs, restaurants and
for the railway and theatre tickets etc. I would also wish to thank
everyone who contributed to the book voucher I received after the
holiday and I know that Eileen appreciated the set of glasses.
Our next meeting will be on Tuesday 25th June, at Communicare as usual.
We will be given a talk by Peter Le Rossignol, the well known local
antique dealer. We had a talk some years ago, from Peter and we then
found it to be very entertaining and Marian reports that she has thoroughly
enjoyed at least two other talks which he has given, so why not come
along and be entertained? If you would like to borrow a video or C.D.
we are now bringing along our full selection of these to each meeting
and there is no charge.