February 2024 Newsletter

Click here to view our Feb 2024 newsletter

It has several links on it and I hope you find it easier to follow those here, rather than from your paper copy.

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Attendance Allowance

Attendance Allowance is paid if you are over State Pension age and need support in your daily life because of a long-term physical or mental health condition. It is NOT about payment to a carer or helper who comes into your home to support you; you are entitled to it whether or not you have help from an external agency. You can apply for it whatever your income or savings are.

Don’t be put off by the length of the application form – 30 pages! And always remember to record about your bad days when you are filling this in, rather than your best days (though it may need to be one of your better days to embark on this!)

This factsheet from an organisation called Independent Age explains who can get Attendance Allowance and how to apply. (The full address is very long. This tinyurl will get you to it.)


You can download the actual form using this link (again shortened into a tinyurl)


It would also be helpful to download the Notes document – only 12 pages (!), with a very useful list on page 3 saying what you need to have ready before you start


I know the application process sounds rather gruesome but please don’t be too put off by it. Perhaps working with someone to help would make it seem more manageable.

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Safe and Well fire check

Safe and Well is a free home fire safety visit, tailored to an individual’s needs that can help protect you and your home from fire.

You are eligible for this visit if you are over 65 and/or who have mobility issues, meaning your ability to escape in an emergency could be hindered.

Follow this link for more information and their referral form


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Christmas lunch

We had a great turnout for our Christmas lunch at the Tweseldown pub in Church Crookham. This is the first time we have celebrated with a lunch rather than an evening meal and we all enjoyed it. Staff were excellent and very responsive to our needs. Many thanks to Annie Theaker who did all the work, setting this up and running the event on the day. Great raffle also!

Tweseldown pub – before we arrived! Taken from pub website
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NHS suggestions for Parkinsons apps

Apps on smart devices are not everyone’s cup of tea. Even so, you may be interested in the My Therappy site where the NHS has put together a selection of apps on various relevant topics for people with Parkinson’s. Here is a link to the site.


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Free eye tests

Specsavers will do home visits for eye tests. You can either contact your local branch, phone 0808 258 7150 or go to their website : https://www.specsavers.co.uk/home-eye-tests/request-a-free-home-visit

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Podiatry information

Here is a link to “All About Feet”  which is in Fleet Road near the library https://allaboutfeet.co.uk/fleet . They also have premises in Yateley. They offer a wide range of podiatry services.

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June 2023 Newsletter

Here is a link to the recent newsletter : it has several links on it. I hope you find it useful

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Paul Mayhew Archer : The Incurable Optimist

Paul Mayhew Archer on stage with only about a third of the audience in view!

On June 9th , we were honoured to host Paul Mayhew Archer who presented his “Incurable Optimist” show. Paul is a comedy writer best known as the co-writer of The Vicar of Dibley. Paul was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2011 aged 58 and found that his way of fighting it was to find it funny. He has since perfected his one-man show and has performed it at numerous venues mainy around the South of England. Just in the past few months, he has performed at Preston, Exeter, Salisbury, Cirencester, Hereford and Aylesbury.

He first got in touch with us in January and here is what he wrote:

The way it works is that I bring the show and the local group brings the audience. So the local group finds a venue seating 150 – 200 people and sells tickets. I come and do the show for nothing except basic expenses – my reward is hearing people laugh – and the group keeps the takings.

Sounds simple! We thought we could do it and went ahead. We were hopeful of getting 150 people though with just a few weeks to go, that was looking doubtful. Then ticket sales took off, we stormed past 150 and had to declare the event Sold Out at 220. We had booked The Church On The Heath at Elvetham Heath, a lovely venue for the event large enough for our audience with a separate hall to serve refreshments and a space for the raffle.

It was a great evening with lots of complimentary comments afterwards. Paul said he would find the funny side of Parkinson’s – and he did. People were saying they hadn’t laughed so much for ages.

We took £3250 in ticket sales, £755 on the raffle and about £430 on refreshments. We kept our costs down to £724 mainly by getting donations to the raffle, leaving us with a profit of around £3700, far above our most optimistic expectations!

Special thanks to Annie Theaker for organizing everything about the refreshments and overseeing the hall on the night with help from Jill Thomas, Judith Rowley, Annie McCallum and Annabel Theaker.  Serving drinks to such a large audience was a major undertaking and they sportingly gave up the opportunity to see all the show as they were so busy, especially in the clearing-up.

Special thanks to Mavis Pocock also who ran the raffle. Annie had been busy beforehand getting donations from various businesses, including Badshot Lea Garden Centre, Cineworld and Wellington Country Park. Mavis has persuaded nearby Morrisons to donate two prizes.

It was a great team effort – well done everyone!

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Cream Tea for World Parkinson’s Day

To mark World Parkinson’s Day in April, we held a Cream Tea at the Key Centre in Elvetham Heath. The idea of having a cream tea came from the Oxford branch. Not sure why it was chosen but it was certainly a good idea. We didn’t run this as a ticketed event so had no idea how many people to expect.

          We started with tables and chairs for about 24. They quickly filled up and by the end we had difficulty fitting everyone in! Many thanks to Annie Theaker for organizing it, including baking the scones which were lovely. It is unusual for us to run an afternoon event and it was good to see several people who do not often come to our other social meetings.

The empty plates say it all! Everyone enjoyed their tea.

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