10th August 2018
Transport company’s drive to raise charity funds arrives at fun day
Akcess fun day August 19th at Coate Water
Akcess Medical NEPTS transport
They say you wait for one bus then three come along – well that’s just what’s going to happen when the team at Swindon-based transport company Akcess lay on a bumper fundraising fun day.
As part of the festivities at the event, which takes place at Coate Water on August 19, visitors will be asked to guess the combined weight of three vehicles. The vehicles are from Akcess CIC, a not-for-profit community transport company, and its sister company Akcess Medical, which operates hospital transport.
As well as guess-the-weight, there will be everything from fun fair rides to tombolas and sweet stalls, displays, and old-fashioned races like egg-and-spoon. There will also be a raffle, with local business people generously donating prizes ranging from Swindon Town tickets and swimming lessons, to chocolates and Bluetooth speakers.
All the profits from the event, which starts at midday, will be split between Wiltshire Air Ambulance and Uplands special school in Swindon.
Organising the fun day is Akcess Medical’s crew manager, Tracey Mason.
“Originally, we were going to run a fun day for staff, as we employ about 200 people across the businesses, but then we decided to open it up to everybody who wants to come along and to help charity at the same time,” she said.
“We picked Uplands as we provide transport for a lot of the children to get to and from school, and for school trips, and they are really wonderful. Wiltshire Air Ambulance fits with Akcess Medical, although our ambulances are firmly on the ground!”
Tracey is still looking for people who want to run stalls or displays at the fun day. To get in touch or for more information email email@example.com or call 01793 855550.
16th June 2018
Eastcott Community Organisation Swindon Suffragette Events
This month, June 2018, Eastcott Community Organisation and Swindon Suffragette are sharing the story of suffragette Edith New, and her involvement in the campaign that led to the women’s vote. This year is the centenary of the legislation which enabled the first women to vote. Furthermore it’s ninety years since the Equal Franchise Act. This act gave equal voting rights to men and women over the age of 21.
With an award of £1695.00 from the Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme, Savernake Street Social all are staging two free events.
The Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme is a £1.5 million government fund helping local and community groups across England to celebrate the centenary of women gaining the right to vote. There are several funding rounds during 2018.
Event one: Sunday 24th June – EqualiTea
This day of family-friendly activities celebrates past achievements and is set to inspire future equalities campaigners.
Through the words of Emily Wilding Davison, delivered by actor and campaigner Kate Willoughby, people can learn about the ambitions and hopes of the suffragettes. There will be musical performances from Talis Kimberley and the Swindon Community Choir, with the opportunity to join a pop-up choir to sing the modern anthem ‘I Can’t Keep Quiet.’
- Arts and craft activities include:
- colouring-in and sending a suffragette postcard
- drawing an inspirational woman
Adults and children can also cast a vote in a mock polling booth, add equalities issues to a protest banner and enjoy suffragette-themed refreshments.
Event Two: Friday 29th June
The Swindon Suffragette team will present an illustrated talk ‘’Worth the Whipping’’ about Edith New and her contribution to the campaign for Votes for Women.
Sharing photographs and newspaper articles they will give an overview of the suffrage campaign starting with the suffragists in the 1860s, through to the actions of the militant suffragettes which included Edith New, and beyond to the Equal Franchise Act in 1928.
The talk is aimed at adults (and secondary school age children with parental discretion).
Excited by the opportunity to continue sharing Edith’s story is local historian, Frances Bevan. She said: ‘We’ve been researching Edith New for several years and held many successful and well-attended talks and guided walks. Getting this grant and working with Eastcott community Organisation lets us bring a range of activities to a wider audience. We’re thrilled to be able to raise more awareness of Edith’s contribution to women’s equality in this centenary year.’
Also delighted by this grant award and the events it’s made possible is Caroline Davies-Khan, Chair of Eastcott Community Organisation.
‘Edith New was born and lived round the corner from Savernake Street Social Hall, on North Street and Prospect Place. We’re looking forward to working with Swindon Suffragette to share her story with the community in such a creative way.’
For further information about the activities organised by Eastcott Community Organisation and Swindon Suffragette, contact the team on Facebook ‘Swindon Suffragette’ ‘Savernake Street Social Hall’, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
14th June 2018
The Victory Breakfast is going to be a splendid event in celebration of votes for women. It’s taking place at Swindon’s Marriott Hotel on Thursday 5th July, 2018 and is raising funds for Swindon’s Womens’ Aid.
Tickets are £10. To get one contact:
Susan: 07842 489 819
Read more about it in this article in the Swindon Advertiser: http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/features/big_interview/16226741.THE_BIG_INTERVIEW__Honouring_those_who_ploughed_the_furrow/
‘Carol Gibbon and Susan Pearson, investigated archives at the London School of Economics to make the victory breakfast as authentic as possible
WOMEN got the vote a century ago – but not all women.
That didn’t come until a decade later, and was marked with a victory breakfast at London’s Cecil Hotel on Thursday, July 5, 1928.
On Thursday, July 5, 2018 at Swindon’s Marriott Hotel, the breakfast will be recreated and the achievement of 90 years ago celebrated…
…Millicent Fawcett, who recently had her statue unveiled in Parliament Square, was involved right from the beginning, when she was a teenager. One of her sisters was the first female doctor, for instance. They were a very feminist-minded family.
“She married an MP who had been blinded in a shooting accident, so she was a secretary from quite a young age and gradually got more and more involved herself. She was there in 1928 at the victory breakfast, so she’d been working all those years and saw the culmination of her efforts.’
14th June 2018
SWINDON AUTHOR OFFERS HELP TO WOULD-BE WRITERS
Well this is something of personal interest dear listeners, having recently written a book myself. Mine though is a different sort of a paperback being non-fiction. Secret Swindon is out mid-July and you can find out more about it here.
Now to the purpose of this post which is to tell you that another Swindon author offers help to would-be writers.
Naz and Sarah
LOCAL author and radio presenter Naz Ahsun has launched a new publishing company which aims to help would-be writers get into print.
Naz has teamed up with graphic designer and illustrator Sarah Ray to launch Vision Maker Press, which offers authors a variety of packages to help them on their self-publishing journey from manuscript to book.
The company aims to be an independent publisher with a difference, offering writers a bespoke service to help them produce the best book that they can.
Naz, who presents the paranormal show, The Outer Limits and The Good News Show on Swindon 105.5, has recently published her own second book, The Little Book of Animal Wisdom – through her own company.
She said: “Sarah and I have known each other for some time and a chance remark led to the creation of Vision Maker Press. Our skills work well together, and we realised we could help others who want to self-publish – yet be efficient and effective in doing so.”
Vision Maker Press will specialise in working with first-time or second-time authors who are serious about writing and publishing their book yet need some guidance to take the right steps.
‘We’re looking to work with anyone who feels they have a story to share which could help or inspire someone else. It can often feel, when you are going through an experience, that you are the only person going through it and knowing someone else has been through something similar can be very empowering and open up new possibilities,’ Naz said.
Sarah said: ‘I work with many authors already in my graphic design business. As I got to know Naz, I found her books to be well written and fluent with strong content and, in my experience, this is unusual. I made an off-the-cuff comment that we should help other authors as I’m the visual person and Naz is the content person. Here we are some months later, launching our publishing company for those who wish to self-publish their stories. It’s amazing.’
Naz, who lives in Faringdon, and Sarah, who is from Llandissilo in Pembrokeshire, have worked together on several projects since 2012 but had not met in person until May! For more information visit www.visionmakerpress.com
NB: In The Little Book of Animal Wisdom, Naz Ahsun explores how observing how animals overcome obstacles in their environment can give us clues as to how we can overcome ours
It is £6.99 from www.naseemahsun.com or from www.visionmakerpress.comand Amazon. £1 for each copy sold will be donated to Oak and Furrows Wildlife Rescue Centre in Cricklade.
13th June 2018
Swindon Stitch & Bitch & The Longest Knit
Ha! The good ladies of Swindon’s super duper Stitch and Bitch group are busy clacking their needles for their latest yarn-based challenge all for a local charity. To find out more read on:
The group will travel to Avebury on the bus from Swindon Bus Station. They’ll be knitting while on the bus and once they get to Avebury. The needle clacking will continue at Avebury under the wishing tree as the ladies knit and crochet hanging spirals. The ladies will be gifting their spirals to visitors in return for donations. All donations will be going to Dressability.
Dressability provides a low-cost clothing alteration and dressmaking service for people with disabilities. Swindon Stitch and Bitch will be collecting donations from their longest knit to give to this fantastic charity
Swindon Stitch and Bitch are working with Dressability making woollen garments for Swindon’s elderly who find themselves choosing between heating and eating during the winter months.
Through Dressability, Swindon Stitch and Bitch have received beautiful yarns from John Lewis. Tracey Major of Swindon Stitch and Bitch explains ‘We were so honoured thatDressability asked us to work with them. We’re thrilled with the amazing yarn from John Lewis. Lots of the yarns are our favourite brands and will make gorgeous, and in some cases, luxurious garments to wrap the elderly up in this winter. They can keep warm in style.’
Tracey Major said, ‘disappointed at being unable to get together for World Knit in Public Day on the 9th of June, we decided instead to celebrate the summer solstice in yarn twirling style. We decided on yarn twirls because they look amazing, are easy to create and hang from anything.’
The group hope that visitors will come and visit them at Avebury and donate their loose change and take away a knitted twirl with them, and to also take with them more awareness of Dressability and the fabulous work they do.
‘Clothing comes in all shapes and sizes, but sometimes that is simply not enough! For people with physical disabilities, learning difficulties and the over 65’s, finding clothes that reflect a personal style, fit well and are easy to take on or off, can be hard. To make life easier Dressability provides a low cost clothing adaptation and alteration service to people who need their clothes to fit well, feel comfortable and remain stylish. Whatever physical challenges you face, Dressability can help tailor your clothing so that getting dressed or being dressed becomes an everyday routine rather than a daily problem!
Dressability is one of only two independent clothing services in the UK which caters specifically for the needs of disabled people.
We work with other voluntary organisations, disability support groups, social workers and healthcare professionals. Because of our experience of clothing and disability, our advice has also been sought by the legal profession.
Dressability is a registered charity which has a board of trustees who are legally responsible for all the charity´s activities.’
29th April 2018
Swindon’s talent – telling Swindon’s Story
Earlier this week I attended a press launch of the above named-event. This one-off, set-to-be-spectacular event is the brainchild of the new and current, High Sheriff of Wiltshire, Nicky Alberry.
Uncelebrated journey celebrates Swindon and its journey by celebrating that of the much-unsung Alfred Williams – aka -the Hammerman poet.
The image below gives more information of what the event will comprise. If you can’t see it too well then visit the Uncelebrated Journey Facebook page. It’ll be much clearer there: https://www.facebook.com/UncelebratedJourney/
What’s so exciting about this innovative event is that it maps the entirety of Swindon’s cultural landscape. Just as the landscape of our beautiful country is more varied and rich than one can comprehend so too is Swindon’s cultural scene. It’s simply astonishing. What’s more it’s being brought together to tell Alfred’s story. And that story is as fascinating as that of Swindon itself.
As Total Swindon so helpfully say in their write-up:
‘The evening, full of specially commissioned pieces of music and dance seek to illustrate Williams’ amazingly varied life. Not only was he a factory worker and poet, he also served in the First World War as a Gunner and travelled to India.’
Alfred educated himself to an astonishing level: he taught himself Greek and Latin so he could read the Classics. His literary output was huge though largely – though not entirely – unrecognised in his lifetime. Alfred – THIS is your moment.
Swindon is a cultural oasis
For those of you unaware of how much Swindon has to offer culturally, here’s a round-up of some of it that you can experience at this event. These are the ones I’ve covered on this blog at various times.
- Swindon Dance
- Paul Turner and the Chamber Music Recital Series
- The South Asian Performing Arts Centre – SAPAC
- Swindon Symphony Orchestra
Swindon Choral Society and a whole heap more. I could be listing them all day.
When and where will it be?
Uncelebrated Journey will be taking centre stage at Swindon’s Wyvern Theatre on Saturday the 6th of October.