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Stokes Singers on track for 25th birthday celebrations

Posted on Tuesday 22nd May 2018 at 10:23 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Stokes Singers in the café at Bristol Temple Meads Station.

Local community choir Stokes Singers have been out and about as part of our 25th anniversary celebrations, writes chair Anne King.

A first for us this year was a performance at Temple Meads Station as part of Youth Music’s ‘Give a Gig’ fundraiser. Temple Meads was one of ten major railway stations to host a musical event and Stokes Singers joined other choirs from the Bristol area to entertain travellers and raise some vital funds.

Youth Music is a national charity investing in music-making projects for children and young people facing challenging circumstances. They believe everyone should have the chance to make music. Their projects help young people develop musically but they also have personal and social outcomes too. Those facing difficulties – economic problems, lifelong conditions, tough circumstances or behavioural issues – are often the ones who get the most out of music-making. Each year more than 350 Youth Music projects are happening across England. That’s around 75,000 children and young people regularly making music. In our area, Youth Music is supporting projects at Knowle West Media Centre and Redcliffe Children’s Centre and Nursery and we were very pleased to be involved.

It was a very musical day for us as we took the opportunity to sing on the train journey down to Temple Meads, then on Platform 3 and in the Station Café and finally at Bristol Parkway Station. We were able to tick off numbers 18 to 21 in our Sing 25 Challenge and are looking forward to completing the final five singing performances in the spring and summer.

More: Upcoming local events in May, June and July »

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‘Living Well with Dementia‘ roadshow in Bradley Stoke on Wednesday 23rd May

Posted on Sunday 20th May 2018 at 8:36 pm by SH (Editor)

Bradley Stoke 'Living Well with Dementia' roadshow 2018.

Residents in the Stokes who have recently been diagnosed with dementia and their family, carers and friends are invited to a ‘Living Well with Dementia’ roadshow in Bradley Stoke on Wednesday 23rd May.

The event, which is free to attend, will take place from 6pm until 8.30pm at Baileys Court Activity Centre (BS32 8BH).

The roadshow will offer practical, emotional and health advice and is intended to provide people with the information they need to understand their diagnosis, find out what support is available to them and learn how to live well with dementia.

During the roadshow, experts will be on hand to answer questions and attendees will be able to take home a handy guide to all of the relevant services and support that’s available. There will also be talks about managing your affairs and all the help that’s on offer from Age UK, the Alzheimer’s Society and the Memory Service.

Cllr Ben Stokes, Cabinet member for adult care in South Gloucestershire, said:

“A dementia diagnosis can leave the person with dementia and their family with lots of questions about what to expect and what they can do to plan for the future. This roadshow will provide useful information to help answer these questions and provide reassurance that you’re not on your own.”

Dr David Soodeen, local GP and clinical lead for mental health at Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG, said:

“People do not always experience dementia in the same way. We would encourage anyone who thinks they may have dementia to go to their GP as soon as possible. An early diagnosis means that we can start to help. As GPs, we can signpost to a wide range of support services in the community to improve quality of life.

“The roadshow event is designed to connect people with dementia and their families and friends with the services and support available. Finding the right support and meeting others going through a similar experience can make a huge difference, and this event will be a great way of achieving this.”

More: How to book your free place at the event »

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BSCS Young Enterprise team progress to regional final

Posted on Friday 18th May 2018 at 10:23 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of the team behind Bradley Stoke Community School’s student business Phonic Farm.

A company set up by a group of thirteen A-level students from Bradley Stoke Community School (BSCS) has made it through to the regional final of the Young Enterprise scheme after being crowned ‘programme winners’ in the area final.

Their business, Phonic Farm, is a literary company which sells phonic inspired cookbooks and recipes to encourage children to learn whilst having fun.

Guided by a volunteer business advisor, Nicole Crompton, marketing manager at Dunkley’s Accountants in Bradley Stoke, the students began their Young Enterprise journey last September. Their first tasks were to decide on a company structure and assign themselves individual roles on the board of directors, along with selecting a company name and a product range.

During the first term, various milestones were achieved, such as deciding to produce a Christmas cookbook with accompanying festive cookie cutters for their first trade fair experience at St Nicholas Market in Bristol. Here, the company did extremely well selling over £130 worth of product and being placed third within the overall Young Enterprise company competition on the day.

Following this success, the company decided to continue down the recipe route and develop a set of recipe cards. A second trade fair at The Mall, Cribbs Causeway in February saw the students sell £70 of product and receive positive feedback about the unique qualities of their product.

The area final, held on 26th April at Kingsweston House in Lawrence Weston, saw the BSCS students competing against seven other teams. The format of the event involved each enterprise using a trade stand to showcase their product to a team of judges, who also quizzed each group about their company reports. This was followed by a series of four-minute formal presentations, after which the judges retired to a ‘secret room’ to make their final decisions.

More: Team named ‘programme winners’. Next stop is regional final. »

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FINALLY! Leisure centre installs CCTV cameras to cover bike parking

Posted on Wednesday 16th May 2018 at 10:09 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of CCTV camera and warning signage at Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre.

Three new close-up, hi-definition CCTV cameras have been installed to cover the bike parking areas at Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre (BSLC), a location which has become a hotspot for bike thefts over the last six months.

Bradley Stoke is currently suffering an unprecedented spate in bike thefts, with 25 reported stolen in the six-month period from November 2017 to April 2018, compared with just one in the corresponding period twelve months earlier. Of these 25, thirteen were stolen from the leisure centre, some distance ahead of the seven taken from the nearby Willow Brook Centre.

With the first theft from the leisure centre occurring on 3rd November, closely followed by six more before the end of the year, several of the victims, and even the local police, remarked on the “completely inadequate” CCTV coverage of the bike parking areas at the centre, which the Journal understands relied on a camera located around 40m away.

Following numerous calls from theft victims (or more usually their parents) saying the leisure centre needed to “up its game” on the security front, the Journal obtained a statement from Circadian Trust, the centre operators, in mid-November which unhelpfully said that “any property, including bikes, is ultimately the individual responsibility of the owner”. The statement said nothing specifically about CCTV for the bike parks, but added that they were “currently looking at increasing CCTV coverage generally in the car park”.

Suggestions that notices could be erected warning customers that the area was being targeted by bike thieves, a common practice elsewhere, such as at Parkway Station, were ignored.

Following a welcome reduction to just one theft in January, possibly influenced by publicity surrounding the Bike Fest @ The Stokes security awareness event on 6th January (organised by a local bike theft victim), the crime rate at the leisure centre soon shot back up with four bikes being taken in February.

More: Action taken after issue escalated to South Glos councillors »

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