Worcestershire Lifestyles had their AGM on the 24th September; the event was very well attended by lots of people who have benefited from the work of this charity. Not only do they recycle old computers, some to use again and others reduced to their component parts, but the group also provides training and schooling in a number of skills and participants are able to gain recognised qualifications. The members have mental or physical handicaps – some quite serious – but Lifestyles gives them a sense of purpose and value, as well as restoring the disciplines common to a working life. Like other charitable organisations in Worcester, they do a great job – which is sometimes undervalued and unrecognised.
The big event of the week was the “Jail ‘n Bail” fund raiser on Saturday 26th September.
This involved participants being mock ‘arrested’ for a fun ‘crime’, handcuffed by West Mercia Police, fingerprinted and placed in a jail cell outside the Guildhall for a few hours! This was an unusual and theatrical experience, with a dramatic walk through the city in convict costume, ball and chain. A judge reminded passersby of their ‘heinous’ crimes and the Worcester Severn were to be released when their collective bail money had been raised! Bail was set at £500 per prisoner, with an overall goal of raising £4,000.
The following characters were charged:
The Mayor of Worcester, Councillor Roger Knight –
Crime: ‘pawning the Mayoral Chain for an ice cream’
Ben Humphry from Worcester Rep – Impersonation of a pantomime dame
Anja Potze Fine Jewellery Ltd – trying to out ‘BLING’ the Mayor
Thomas Evans from Thursfields – Handling salmon in suspicious circumstances
Richard Shelton from Shelton & Lines – Trying to sell a Lego house
Katie Love – too much tapping
Vance Parsons of DH Recruitment – ‘murdering karaoke songs’
It was an incredibly successful event, raising in excess of £4,700 for the three charities Sight Concern, Acorns Children’s Hospice and Daisychain Benevolent Fund, which will share the monies raised equally.
My thanks also goes out to all those that made this day possible including all the street collectors, Rob Leetham, who made a great compere; Ray Needham, the savage Judge Dredd; P.Cs. James Potter and Ian Ruff and PC Peeler the Police Dog Mascot – not forgetting my P.A. Gill Preece who was brilliant, and is always so solidly behind all these events.
he star of the show was Fiona Blake of Sight Concern. Thank you Fiona, you were great – and apologies to everyone for disrupting their Saturday shopping experience!
Occasionally a week will start off with a bang – and last week certainly did, as my wife and I celebrated our birthdays in London. We saw a show, Miss Saigon at the Prince Edward Theatre, which was brilliant and we would thoroughly recommend it. Then we did a circuit on The Eye and had some splendid views of London. As if that wasn’t enough, thanks to the generosity of Lord Faulkner of Worcester and Robin Walker, our MP, we were treated to lunch in the House of Lords and dinner in the House of Commons. A remarkable and unforgettable weekend! We would like to take this opportunity to thank both Richard and Robin for a very privileged and enjoyable experience.
The Arena was the venue for this year’s City of Worcester Sport Awards. The event was co-hosted by Andy Price, the Chair of Sport Worcester, Steve Cram CBE and Allison Curbishley, and they made the evening something special. Our Sport, Art and Play Team, led by Hannah Cox, organised a really memorable event; the Arena was full of smiling faces!
One of the good things about our Sports Awards is that it is not just the athletes who are recognised. The categories also recognise coaches, schools and volunteers to Physical Activity, allowing for a much more rounded and inclusive approach.
Another great event held in the Arena was the concert of the Band of the Grenadier Guards; the Arena is such a fantastic venue for all manner of sport and entertainment, and our thanks must go to the University Team for having the vision and foresight to create it.
The event was a joint production by Worcester Live and of course The Grenadiers, who are superb and performed brilliantly to a packed audience. The range of music was wide and all of it was thoroughly entertaining. That is until the very last piece, when the Major conducting said that the last number would be different as he had received a letter from a Worcester resident. He read out the letter which said the writer had been rehearsing for ages in front of a mirror, much to the irritation of everyone around him, in the hope of achieving his life time ambition to conduct the Band of the Grenadier Guards. He then said the letter was signed by the Mayor!! Much to my absolute embarrassment I had to take centre stage and conduct the band. I suppose there are few Mayors that can say they have done that!! I did get some sympathy applause.
If you haven’t visited Shrub Hill Railway Station recently it might be worth paying a visit – if only to see the Victorian waiting room which has been lovingly and fully restored. New tiles have been made and applied, replacing any broken or damaged items and the degree of detail applied to restoring the original look is remarkable. The waiting room was officially opened by the Duke of Gloucester and is a £461K project funded by Network Rail and the Railway Heritage Trust, with support from Historic England, London Midland, and Worcestershire County Council, which has allowed the Grade II listed building to be restored so that it can be used by passengers.
The historic grand waiting rooms on platform 2b of the station were built between 1857 and 1868, with the south room originally used as a ladies waiting room and the north as a third class waiting room. One of the waiting rooms is open to passengers, while the other has been turned into much-needed space for staff.
The voluntary team of “flower Ladies”, who look after all the floral arrangements whenever there is a major event at the Guildhall, came to the Parlour for tea and cakes on the 9th September. It was a delight to receive them and thank them for the beautiful contribution they make to events. Their contribution lifts the whole look and ambience, and they do it so well. Thank you Ladies – your work is very much appreciated.
The opening of the Organ Donor Memorial at the Worcester Royal Hospital was a moving event and led me to do some research. What did astonish me was to read that right now worldwide, there are more than enough people waiting for an organ to fill a large football stadium twice over. Every ten minutes someone is added to the waiting list and each day, an average of 79 people receive organ transplants. Around 22 people die each day waiting for transplants that can’t take place because of the shortage of donated organs.
So apart from an obvious need to remember and thank those who have donated, if this memorial raises awareness by just a few percentage points and helps to increase the numbers of those prepared and able to donate, it will be serving a very worthwhile cause.
If you haven’t already signed up you can do so at:- https://www.nationalfundingscheme.org
It was a disappointing start to the week with rain washing out some very good plans, the main casualty being the Carnival. The event was run this year basically for two reasons; one to see if the people of Worcester want one (the crowds that turned out proved without doubt that they did), and the other was to sort out all the logistics – including security arrangements and health and safety.
It was such a shame about the weather – the rain ruined all the paper costumes that the parents and children made, Pitchcroft flooded and the fun fair was forced to up stumps and depart! As Mayor I think that Worcester should have an annual carnival and I hope the future will see a bigger event with motorised floats, which will bring the whole community together.
On a very, very positive note the European Wheelchair Basketball Championship, held at the Arena, was magnificent! Really fast, energetic, entertaining sport played out by incredibly keen and committed teams of great players. Not only was the sport great, the venue was second to none and provided world class facilities for all the competitors, administrators and spectators alike. Hats off to the University for such great forward thinking and planning to deliver this national venue for disabled sporting events; so good for Worcester!
Our teams did us proud; the women’s team did well to gain bronze. In their match against Germany, who won Gold, we lost by one point with a final score of 55 to 56. They deserved more and nearly won that match when the very last ball, worth two points, in the very last second of the match bounced off the ring of the net just as the whistle blew!! Our men’s Team won the Championship Final with points to spare. A truly superb week in Worcester’s sporting calendar.
The Battle of Worcester Drumhead Service took place on 3rd September, starting in the Commandery and then processing up to the top of Fort Royal, where two volleys of musket fire preceded a short service by Cannon Tonge and then a talk by Stephen Roberts. The Battle of Worcester Society is committed to bringing the fascinating and vital heritage behind the battle of 1651 to life for us all and during this event a book titled The Diaries and Papers of Henry Townshend was launched. It is about his experiences of life during the siege of Worcester in 1646.
- 04/10/2015 08:00Attend the start of the Tour Ride
- 06/10/2015 17:45Worcester Lecture
- 07/10/2015 17:30Children in Need Fundraiser - Basketball Shot Challenge with the British Wheelchair Basketball Team
- 07/10/2015 19:30The Canal & River Trust Numerical Project – Final Partnership Event and Dinner