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Greetings from the Jubilee Centre

I hope you and your loved ones are well.

In this week’s newsletter, there is an update on the coronavirus in Bury, our opening and closing times for the festive period and an advert for volunteers and a minibus driver. And we have got some nice pictures of the parties we held this week.   

Coronavirus in Bury  

As of Thursday 17th December, 593.6 people per 100,000 in Bury tested positive for coronavirus over the last 7 days – that is an increase of 23% from the previous week. On the same day, the England average was 556.1 people testing positive per 100,000 over the last seven days– an increase of 10% from the previous week’s figure. (These figures only represent people who are getting a positive test for the first time. People who are infected for a second or third time are not included.)

As I write this, news has just come in that there were 93,045 new infections reported in the last 24 hours. This is a new daily record for the UK and the fear is that we will seek much higher rises in the next week.

New rules for self-isolation

As we try to limit the spread of the Omicron variant, rules around isolation for people who have been in contact with someone who has Covid-19 have changed again. 

• Anyone aged between 5 and 18-and a half, or aged over 18 and double-vaccinated should take a rapid lateral flow test for seven days since their last contact with someone with Covid-19. In this instance, you do not need to self-isolate, unless your test is positive. 

• If you are aged over 18 and you are not vaccinated, or have only had one vaccination, you must isolate for ten days.

Rapid lateral flow (LFT) tests are available from local pharmacies, online, and available for collection from the Mosses Centre in Bury. 

It remains the case that anyone with Covid-19 symptoms should stay at home and self-isolate immediately. You should arrange to have a PCR test as soon as possible. If this PCR test result is positive, you must continue to self-isolate.

Even if you do not have Covid-19 symptoms, but you have a positive PCR test result, you must stay at home and self-isolate.

If you are required to stay at home and self-isolate, or if you are the parent or guardian of a child who has been told to self-isolate, you may be entitled to a one-off payment of £500 through the NHS Test and Trace Support Payment scheme.

Bury’s Community Hubs are there for anyone who needs support, including those who are self-isolating. To access essential help, call 0161 253 5353 (9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday – excluding bank holidays) or text 07860 022876 (messages responded to by the next working day). 

Bury Public Health Briefing

The Bury Public Health briefing for the borough of Bury (dated 17th December, 2021) provides all the information about testing, where to get vaccinations, and other sources of help in Bury. Click on this link Borough Bulletin (17.12.21)

How to plan for this Christmas

In this newsletter, I have tried to echo public health messages that is in line with government policy and scientific evidence. This week, understanding the public health messages has felt a lot like trying to learn the hokey-cokey at midnight after a few too many eggnogs!

This week, we have been told 

  • Go to a Christmas Party
  • Don't go to a Christmas Party
  • Go to a Christmas Party when you should not, but don't get caught
  • Don't go to a Christmas Party if you been caught having a party when you shouldn't. 

When things get so confusing, I find it helpful to ask a question such as ""What would the Queen do?"

This has been a terrible year for the Queen, having lost her husband, Prince Philip in April. One of the defining images of the year is the photograph of her sitting alone at his funeral, because she obeyed the rules of the time.

This is the one Christmas when she would want to be with her family. Traditionally, the Queen invites her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren to join her at Buckingham Palace for a pre-Christmas Lunch before she departs for her annual Christmas stay at Sandringham. This year, she has cancelled that lunch as a 'precautionary' measure, feeling that too many people's Christmas arrangements were at risk if it went ahead.

The best message I can give you in planning your own Christmas is "Be cautious - be like the Queen." 

Our services 

All our services could close at a moment’s notice if staff have to self-isolate following a positive test. If this happens, we will update people via a special newsletter, Twitter and Facebook.  

Activities at the Jubilee Centre

In response to the rising Coronavirus infection levels, we have sadly taken the decision to cancel all activities until the New Year.

We will send out an email on New Year’s Eve to update you on our plans for activities from Tuesday 4th January.

Our Café

Our café is open Monday to Thursday next week.

The café will extend into the hall to allow for more social distancing between tables.

You do not have to wear a facemask when visiting the café but you are welcome to do so.

If you would like to check we are still open, before setting off from home, call us on 0161 763 9030.

Christmas and New Year Opening Times

The Jubilee Centre café, Friends Together and shops will be closed on Friday 24th December, Monday 27th December, and Tuesday 28th December. 

We will reopen the café. Friends Together and the shops on Wednesday 29th December and Thursday 30th December.

On Friday 31st December, our café and shops will open from 9.30 and close early at 2.00 pm.

We will be closed on Monday 3rd January and all our services will return to normal from Tuesday 4th January 2022.

Volunteer this Christmas

Telephone befriending

With the new variant Omicron on the rise daily, the Keeping in Touch telephone befriending service at Age UK Bury service is vital as ever.

We urgently need people to help make telephone befriender calls either from our office in Bury or from your home. 

If you have any free time to spare in the week - we operate this service Monday to Friday 10.00am -14.00pm - please give us a ring on 0161 763 9030 or send an email to We would love to hear from you. 

We also need funding to keep this vital service running. Please check onto our Just Giving page to find out more.

Volunteer Marshalls are needed urgently by Bury’s Vaccination Centres

The vaccination centres across Bury need Volunteer Vaccination Marshalls to help with the ‘Booster Jab Programme’. As a Volunteer Marshall, you are the first point of contact at a Vaccination Centre and will help to ensure the smooth arrival of members of the public by welcoming and assisting in directing them in a friendly manner to receive their Covid Vaccination.

Please click on this link to sign up

Job Vacancy ¦ Friends Together – Minibus Driver

Age UK Bury runs four "Friends Together" groups to bring older people together. Our groups are aimed at people, aged 65 and over, who rarely see anyone from week to week or need a little extra support to get out for the day.

We are seeking a minibus driver to help older people to get to see their friends. 

  • Rate of Pay:  £8.91/hour
  • Location: The minibus is parked in Clarence Park. The service is located in Bury on Monday, in Prestwich on Tuesday, in Whitefield on Wednesday and in Radcliffe on Thursday.
  • Hours: 16 hours / week. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesdays, and Thursdays: 8.45 am to 10.45 and 3.15 pm to 5.15 pm. Some overtime is permitted.  

For an application pack, please go to

The Quiz

The answers to the last Quiz (dated 3rd December) is in this link.

This week’s Quiz brings you another 30 questions to test your knowledge and the some of the questions are quite topical. This quiz is just for you and your friends to enjoy. The right answers will be sent out in two weeks.

This week, we managed to hold two parties – one for our Tea Dancers and one for our Line Dancers. It was great to see people coming together and enjoying music, dance, and laughter. Thank you to our wonderful hosts - Andrea, Nadine and Keith on Thursday and Malcolm on Friday - for two great afternoons and to Karen and her kitchen team for providing the delicious buffets.

Our next newsletter will be out on Christmas Eve with news of this month’s 100 Club winners and another quiz!  

Keep safe, keep warm and keep alive!

Andy and all at Age UK Bury