Greetings From the Jubilee
It has been a busy week and it was great to see the doors of our Ramsbottom shop open again.
Next week, our Jubilee Centre Café will be welcoming our friends. Whilst you have been away, we have invested in our lighting system at the centre. We tore out over 200 fluorescent bulbs and replaced them with new energy-efficient LED panels. Come and see the improvement at our café from Monday and here's to a brighter, greener future.
We also received some great news from Bury Council’s Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation Fund. When the pandemic started, Jane, our new Befriending Co-ordinator, set up a telephone befriending scheme aimed at those who were really isolated and needed a friendly chat. Over the year, the service grew and we now support 125 people with over 200 calls a week. Our friends at Bury Blind Society also have a telephone service and so we are now working with them to make this a permanent service for Bury residents. From today, we are advertising for a Telephone Befriending Officer to work with Jane to maintain and develop the service. If you are a superperson, or know of a superperson who can do this job, there are more details in Part Two of this newsletter.
Part One: Coronavirus in Bury
In Bury, on Thursday 13th May, 19.4 people per 100,000 were tested positive for coronavirus – that is a decrease of 23% from the previous week’s figure. On the same day, the England average was 23.3 people testing positive per 100,000 – an increase of 8% from the previous week’s figure.
Bury is now doing better than the England average so take a bow and treat yourself to a cream cake – Let’s Do It for Bury!
The worrying news is coming from our neighbours in Bolton which now has the highest infection rate in the UK, having seen a rise of 127% in the last week. Bury Public Health has issued a statement which we are including below.
New variant of concern in Greater Manchester - a message from Bury Public Health
New variants of coronavirus are now circulating in Greater Manchester - this includes Bury. They appear to be more infectious, and we don’t know yet if they cause more severe disease or if the vaccines offer less protection against them.
So it's vital we keep following the rules to protect ourselves and our families. Continue to meet friends and family outside wherever possible and stick to the basics of hands, face, space + keep air circulating when indoors.
- Test - Bury has plenty of Covid-19 test options for people with and without symptoms - bury.gov.uk/coronavirus-testing.
- Isolate - If you test positive for coronavirus please stay at home and do not go out under any circumstances.
- Vaccinate - Take the vaccine when offered, and make sure you get your second dose when it is time.
Together we can stop coronavirus circulating in our communities. Let's do it for each other. Let's do it for Bury.
As of 9 May 2021, a total of 99,425 first doses and 60,539 second doses of the vaccine have been delivered from Bury's four community vaccination centres, hospital hubs and regional vaccination centres.
You can now book a coronavirus vaccination if you are aged 38 and over. Click here to book: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/
What's changing from Monday 17th May?
Just in case you missed the news this week, the government are reducing the restrictions and the main points are:
- You will be able to meet indoors with 1 other household, in no more than a group of 6.
- New guidance on meeting friends and family will emphasise personal responsibility rather than government rules. Instead of instructing you to stay 2m apart from anyone you don’t live with, you will be encouraged to exercise caution and consider the guidance on risks associated with COVID-19 and actions you can take to help keep you and your loved ones safe.
- You will be able to meet outdoors in groups of no more than 30 people.
- All indoor hospitality, including restaurants and pubs, can open with restrictions.
- Hotels, hostels and B&Bs can open.
- Up to 30 people will be able to attend weddings, receptions and commemorative events such as wakes. Christenings and bar mitzvahs will also be allowed.
- The rules for care home residents visiting out and receiving visitors will change, allowing up to five named visitors (two at any one time), provided visitors test negative for COVID-19. Please check with the care home before you make a visit.
For all the details, please go to https://www.gov.uk/guidance/covid-19-coronavirus-restrictions-what-you-can-and-cannot-do
Part two: Our support to you
Reopening the Jubilee Centre
On Monday 17th May, we are reopening the cafe from 10 to 2.30, Monday to Friday.
Social distancing rules on inside hospitality will be in place so it’s six people or 2 households per table. As a temporary measure, the cafe will extend into the main hall, allowing more people to see others safely - even if it’s just waving to each other from their table.
With the roll out of the vaccination, we are increasingly confident that restrictions will be lifted in June.
From Monday 21st June, we expect that we will be able to start all our activities. A revised timetable will be available in this newsletter nearer the time.
We are planning a “Let’s Celebrate with Age UK Bury” event on Saturday 26th June to promote the centre and our activities. On that day, there will be a mix of stalls, music and hopefully entertainers outside. Inside the hall, we will offer taster sessions of our activities.
Our fundraisers group is busy working on plans to make it a special day but we need the help of you lovely readers.
- Can you donate gifts for our tombola and raffle stalls?
- Can you run a stall or activity to raise funds for our charity?
- Can you entertain others - we need singers, musicians, magicians and clowns?
- Do you know a celebrity who would like to join us and sign autographs?
If you can help in any way to make the day spectacular, drop me an email at email@example.com
Donations for the tombola and raffle may be left at our cafe from Monday 17th May.
Our Charity Shops
Our Ramsbottom charity shop is now open from 10 am to 4 pm, Wednesday to Sunday and we will open the Bury shop later in May.
We are still unable to collect donations from your home until the rules for storing items change. Currently we must store all donations for 72 hours before we can put them on display, to protect both staff and customers. As there is not much space in either shop, it creates problems with storage.
We will be answering the Age UK Bury office telephone – 0161 763 9030 - from 10.00 am to 2.00 pm from Monday to Friday.
During the Coronavirus pandemic, we are keeping essential support services open. These include:
- Information & Advice
- Keeping in Touch - our new telephone befriending service
- Handyperson Service - to help you with those small DIY jobs around the house
- Online Activities by Sue and Diana
- Our weekly email newsletter
Nordic Walking – a real life activity!
Diana is leading the Nordic Walking session on Wednesday afternoons from 2.00 pm till 3.00 pm. The classes are £5, payable by cash or cheque, on the day. We will supply the poles and Diana will give full instructions. You can just turn up on the day.
Job Vacancy - Telephone Befriending Officer
We are seeking a Telephone Befriending Officer to support our Befriending Co-ordinator to support isolated people living in the borough of Bury. We are looking for someone with experience of administration and working with vulnerable people and volunteers.
For more details, please:go to https://www.ageuk.org.uk/bury/about-us/work-for-us/
Part three: and in other news...
Bury’s Happy Festival
Bury’s Happy Festival is gearing up a notch and a programme of events are now being planned. For a full list go to https://happyfestival.org/
We will highlight some of the events that may interest you.
Sing Yourself Happy with the Hallé
Join the Hallé’s community choir leaders, Stuart Overington and Matthew Roughley, in a free one-hour online workshop created especially for the Bury Happy Festival. If you’ve ever wanted to sing in a choir, or just want to sing with the best, then this workshop’s for you. You don’t need any experience, just bring your voice and be ready to sing some heart-warming songs guaranteed to lift the soul.
The Ukulele Club - A new comedy drama by Steve Cooper
A pop-up Ukulele Club on Youtube – with added drama will take place on Friday May 21 from 8 to 9pm
Want to know more about wills, powers of attorney and the mental capacity act?
Join a zoom webinar with solicitor, Tasmin Khalid from JMW Solicitors on 26th May 2021 from 01:30 to 2.30 pm..Tas Khalid has been providing legal advice for those living with dementia and their families for over a decade. In an ever-complex legal world, Tas will discuss the importance of Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney documents.
The answers to last week’s General Knowledge Quiz is in the link.
This week’s Quiz brings you another 40 questions to test your knowledge. This quiz is just for you and your friends to enjoy and I definately won’t be marking your answers or giving out prizes. The answers will be sent out with next week’s newsletter.
The editor of this lovely newsletter will be going on holiday next week and so we will have a shortened edition, just to say hello!
Keep safe and keep hopeful
Andy and all at Age UK Bury
PS: Some eagle-eyed readers spotted that I had misspelt the word “definitely” in last week’s newsletter and wrote in to correct me. Clearly they have too much time on their hands so I will be sending them a mobile phone and setting them some tasks over the next few weeks. Await further instructions. Andy H 😊