Greetings from the Jubilee Centre!
I hope you and your loved ones are well and coping with the third lockdown. .
The good news is that the Coronavirus Infection rates in Bury are coming down whilst the number of vaccinations are going up. If you have been shielding for the last year, you will be over the moon that shielding will come to an end on 1st April.
In part three of this newsletter, there is news about a Census scam, loads of arty stuff and another quiz to keep you out of trouble.
Part One: Coronavirus in Bury
In Bury, on Thursday 18th March, 73.3 people per 100,000 were tested positive for coronavirus – that is a fall of 14% from the previous week’s figure. On the same day, the England average was 58.3 people testing positive per 100,000 – a fall of 2% from the previous week’s figure.
Whilst Bury’s figures are heading in the right direction, seven boroughs in Greater Manchester are seeing steep rises - Oldham’s figure rose by 27% in the last week.
The “stay at home” message remains in place. Every day at home, every covered face, every open window, every video call, every washed hand is making difference.
Bury residents are living under the regulations of the National Lockdown, which are outlined on our webpage https://www.ageuk.org.uk/bury/our-services/coronavirus/
By 14th March, 76,239 people in Bury had received their first vaccination - that’s about 42% of the eligible population (182,100). This is a tremendous achievement by our council, local health services, the army and local volunteers.
The Bury Council website has a page about the vaccine at https://www.bury.gov.uk/coronavirus-vaccine
Book a vaccination online - New criteria
You can now book a vaccination online if you are aged 50 or over
Help Bury get vaccinated!
Bury needs volunteers to help them marshal the local vaccination centres as part of the NHS Covd-19 vaccination service.
Sign-up here: https://bit.ly/3tV32ZJ
Bury Covid-19 Community Champions – volunteers needed
Bury Council has launched its Covid-19 Community Champions network, aiming to sign up hundreds of residents from across the borough. The Covid-19 Champions network will help residents to stay up-to-date with how to protect themselves and others against the virus.
I went to the first meeting this week and found it extremely useful and informative
To sign up to be a Covid Champion, visit www.bury.gov.uk/communitychampions
Is the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine safe?
Concern was raised about a possible link between the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine and blood clots in veins (venous thromboembolism). In mass vaccination campaigns, it is routine for the regulatory authorities to monitor any potential adverse event following immunisation.
The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, The EU’s European Medical Agency and the World Health Organisation have all conducted their own investigations and concluded that there is no link with blood clots in veins and the vaccine. (The links will take you to their statements).
Vaccination against COVID-19 will not reduce illness or deaths from other causes. However if there are any risks to the public, it is reassuring that they are picked up and investigated. It shows the surveillance system is working and that effective controls are in place. .
If you are concerned about any side effects of your vaccination, please consult your GP and you can report it yourself using the MHRA Yellow Card reporting site
Shielding ends on 1st April 2021
The government has announced that shielding will end at midnight on 31st March. Everyone on the shielding list will receive a letter but if you want a sneak preview, click on Letter to clinically extremely vulnerable people (publishing.service.gov.uk)
Part two: Our support to you
Telephone helpline and online support
We will be answering the Age UK Bury office telephone – 0161 763 9030 - from 10.00 am to 2.00 pm every weekday throughout the lock down. If we can not help, we are sure to find someone who can! If you get the answerphone, please leave a message and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
We will update people with latest news on
During the Coronavirus pandemic, we are trying to keep 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
Tea and Chat with Sue on Zoom
Sue is running a Tuesday afternoon Tea and Chat session, giving people a chance to catch up with friends.
Our free online chats will take place from 2.30 pm to 3.30 pm. To join us, send an email to Sue at email@example.com for an access code and link. Get your best china out!
This class is available on the Zoom platform. To download the free app, go to https://zoom.us/
Tai Chi with Sue
Sue also holds a Tai Chi class online on Fridays at 11.00 am. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for an access code and link.
Sue has kindly set up a new group on Facebook for all who are interested in Tai Chi - click onto https://www.facebook.com/groups/144906774110472 or search for “Age UK Bury Tai Chi Group”. Thank you, Sue.
Diana will be live on our Facebook page on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
- Monday: 11.00 to 11.45 am: Gentle Exercise
- Monday: 11.50 to 12.35 Chair Based Exercise
- Tuesday: 10.00 to 10.45: DanceFit
- Wednesday: 11.00 to 12.00 am: Pilates
If you can’t make these times, Facebook will let you watch at a later time.
Join us at https://www.facebook.com/ageukbury/ Thank you Diana.
Date for your Diary
Diana is planning to restart the Nordic Walking sessions on Wednesdays from 2.00 pm till 3.00 pm from Wednesday 31st of March. More details next week
Part Three: And in other news
Census Day 2021- 21st March
Census Day is coming! Households across the UK are currently receiving letters which include a unique 16-digit code to access the census online.Criminals may try to use this as an opportunity to send phishing emails or texts.
Please remember that
- you will only be contacted about the Census by letter – never by email, text or phone.
- you will be asked to fill in your name, occupation, date of birth and where you live but you will not be asked to give your National insurance number or financial details.
The RNIB Talking Books service is absolutely free and gives you access to over 32,000 fiction and non-fiction books for adults and children.
For more info,
- go to https://www.rnib.org.uk/talking-books-service
- or call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999
- or email email@example.com
Age of Creativity Festival
Every May, the Age of Creativity Festival brings together a wealth of eclectic, creative ideas for and by older people across England. This year’s content includes a mix of ‘digital’ or ‘non-digital’ resources to try from home. Visit the website at https://festival.ageofcreativity.co.uk/
If you know of any digital resources that they could include, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Explore the National History Museum
Delve into the National History Museum from home with a virtual self-guided tour of the galleries, an interactive experience about Hope the blue whale and audio guides narrated by Sir David Attenborough.
For our Scottish friends
The Between Islands exhibition explores the inspiration and legacy of islands in the arts, crafts and literature of Orkney, Shetland and the Outer Hebrides.
Bren and Mike wish to give a “massive public THANK YOU” to Ron Marrow, “a very nice and friendly person”, who took their old computer equipment to refurbish it and then distributed it to help others through this pandemic. Ron also took time to discuss small problems with their present computer and a few days later Ron called to tell them where the equipment had gone. Excellent service!
If you would like to donate old Windows 7 and 8 laptops to a good cause, please email email@example.com or call 0161 763 9030 and our team will make the arrangements.
If you have any news to share, please send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Missing a Newsletter?
If you are looking for a previous newsletter, they are all available on our website at https://www.ageuk.org.uk/bury/our-services/coronavirus/
The answers to last week’s General Knowledge Quiz (12th March) is in the link.
This week’s Quiz (19th March) brings you another 50 questions to test that grey matter.
There is no point cheating as there are no prizes on offer but you will be over the moon if you get all the answers before next Friday! Good Luck!
Stay safe and look out for our next newsletter next Friday. If you have any news to share, please send to email@example.com
Andy and all at Age UK Bury
PS: I tend to keep my personal opinions out of this newsletter and just stick to the facts. However, I thought I would update you on my adopted Dad.
Dad has been in bad health for the last 20 years and has lived in a care home for the last 7 years. He suffers from a whole range of illnesses, including asthma, heart problems, an untreated hernia, arthritis and more recently dementia. It does not take a medical degree to guess that if he got Coronavirus, he would not last long. He received the vaccination in January and 3 weeks later, he got a positive Coronavirus test result. He was quite ill for a few days but then improved. 28 days later, he was back to normal.
Around the same time, an old friend posted a message on Facebook to say her son, a healthy 32 year old with no underlying conditions had come down with the virus. He had not received the vaccine as he was not eligible in any way. At first the posts were hopeful that he would recover quickly. As the days went by, his condition worsened and eventually he died in great pain. His mother is heartbroken.
When I get asked if vaccinations will make any difference, my answer is always an emphatic "yes". If in doubt of getting a vaccine, please consider these stories. Remember that although you may have had that jab, those who haven’t are still at risk and so all that staying at home, wearing a face mask and sanitising anything that moves really does help in reducing the infection rate for everyone. Keep safe and look after each other.