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Cadets transform care home’s garden

Residents at a Cringleford care home are enjoying a transformed garden, thanks to the efforts of a group of police cadets.

Cavell Court, on Dragonfly Lane, now boasts newly-painted garden tables and chairs, an improved sensory space and plenty of handmade enclosures to attract local wildlife.  Panola pansies, begonias, bellis reds and dwarf conifers have also been planted, adding to the existing displays.

The cadets and their leaders joined residents as part of a community project which also aimed to encourage friendship between different generations.

Youngsters helped residents make fat balls for the birds and create colourful decorations such as pinwheels to brighten up the outside space.  A total of 40 handmade birdboxes have also been added to the garden, with all of the timber donated by a local Jewson’s branch.

Afterwards, the police cadets joined residents, their relatives and the Care UK team for a well-deserved buffet and firework display. Richard Lawson, home manager at Cavell Court, said: “We’re so grateful to the police cadets who helped spruce up our garden,  the project proved to be a real success and you could see from the residents’ faces just how much they enjoyed spending time with the cadets. “Intergenerational relationships have been proven to be beneficial to older people, and it was clear that the residents at Cavell Court really enjoyed the afternoon.

“The outdoors has many therapeutic benefits for older people, not least because it’s given them the opportunity to get back to nature, but it can also improve mood, concentration and relieve stress. We hope the garden will bring much joy to residents and visitors over the coming years.”

Cavell Court is an 80-bed care home which provides full-time residential, nursing and dementia care, as well as short-term respite care.

Picture: Lucy Taylor Photography

 

Book now for Eaton Park railway Santa Specials!

Preparations are well under way for Santa to make a return visit to Eaton Park Miniature Railway in December. Following a successful experiment last year, the Santa Specials are being repeated in 2017.  According to Santa’s secretary, he will be visiting the railway from 11.30am onwards on Sundays December 3 and 10 where he will be speaking to children and well-behaved adults alike.

Anyone wanting to take part is urged to pre-book by application form available on the ndsme.org website, or from the dispenser at Parkside station at Eaton Park.

A portion of fares from the day will go to local charities.

Trains will be running from 11.30am until around 3pm and will operate every few minutes, weather permitting.


Eaton’s woodland wonder workers

It began with a hugely-successful community effort to reclaim a neglected ancient hedge.

Six years later, it’s led to the formation of a Friends group which is nurturing a much-loved woodland.

And the hard work of the Friends of Danby Wood was recognised when the group was awarded a silver gilt certificate and hand-turned wooden trophy for Best Woodland in the Anglia in Bloom competition, announced this autumn.

Although the Friends group was only formed last year, its 30-odd volunteers have already carried out a lot of clearance work and litter-picking in the wood, as well as planting hundreds of native trees, thousands of bluebells, putting up bat boxes and improving access with two sets of steps.

And on Saturday November 25, at 10am, everyone is invited to meet in the Marston Lane car park and join other volunteers planting 450 more young trees in the 4.5ha wood.

The Friends are guided by Matt Davies, project officer with Norwich Fringe, which manages the wood on behalf of its owner, Norwich City Council.

Kathleen Rowlands, a committee member of Eaton Rise Residents’ Association (ERRA) and co-ordinator of the Friends of Danby Wood, said the project had brought the community together. Volunteers aged from 10 to people in their 80s, worked side by side, with jobs allocated according to abilities. Clearance work usually ended with a big bonfire and a tea break with homemade flapjacks.

ERRA and Kathleen were the driving forces behind the earlier Ipswich Road Ancient Hedge project which saw volunteers improve the soil, and plant fruit-bearing trees along part of the line of the hedge, which had been damaged in a 2003 storm.

The project caught the imagination of local people and thousands of pounds were donated to a Hedge Fund. Supporters also managed to get grants, donations of trees and other help from businesses, the city council and charities.

Kathleen said the soil was now vastly improved and the trees bore berries which attracted birds, butterflies and other insects.

She added: “As with the hedge we aim to improve the biodiversity of the wood and create a peaceful environment for wildlife and visitor alike. “

Eaton dementia marketplace event a big success

Visitors to a Marketplace event organised by Eaton Dementia Friends were able to take part in exercise sessions, bowling, enjoy free tea and cakes, and browse a large number of information stalls on a huge range of topics.

One outcome of the event is the launch this month of CAMEO, an initiative to organise social activities for people living with dementia, and their carers.

Councillor Caroline Ackroyd, the driving force behind the Marketplace, said: “It was brilliant to watch so many conversations going on and to see people bowling with Sportspark and exercising with Tracey from Extend – I believe that the oldest participant was 96!”

She thanked everyone who had helped make the event a success, including stallholders and the church, which provided the venue for free.

Another marketplace is planned for the spring.

CAMEO (Come and Meet Everyone), a programme of get-togethers events for those who are lonely, isolated or getting increasingly forgetful, has launched in Eaton this month.

Committee members of the Eaton Village Residents’ Association (EVRA), in collaboration with St Andrew’s Church, Eaton, have worked hard over the summer to organise the project.

“We know that keeping our social contacts alive, getting out and learning something new, are all ways to keep mentally fit into old age,” said spokesman Naomi Godding.

“There has been immense goodwill shown to this project already, with contributions of time, expertise and resources from individuals and organisations such as Reality estate agents who have kindly paid for our advert in this month’s Just Eaton and Cringleford.

“We shall be seeking enough funds to ensure that, once the project gets off the ground, it remains airborne.”

  • The Eaton CAMEO project held its first session in St Andrew’s Church Hall, Eaton, on October 25 and the next will be on November 22, from 2.30pm to 4pm, and then on the fourth Wednesday of the month from January 24 2018. Contact the organisers at EatonCAMEO@e-c-a.ac.uk Tel: 01603 464937  

 

 

Finnbar’s Force needs your votes

The family and friends of a little Hethersett boy who died last year from a brain tumour are urging everyone to support the charity set up in his memory by voting for it to receive up to £25,000.

 

People have until November 21 to vote in the 2017 Aviva Community Fund project which sees grants given out to good causes supported by public votes.

 

Finnbar’s Force has already made it through to the voting stage and now needs supporters to vote for the charity and put it through to the final judging round.

 

The charity was set up in memory of five-year-old Finnbar Cork (pictured) who died in August last year.

 

On the charity’s Facebook page the organisers urge: “We need you to vote for us (you get 10 votes, so please vote 10 times!). Not only that, but we need you to spread the word for us and about us to EVERYONE you can through Facebook, word of mouth and every other way that you can think of! So please, share, share, share!”

 

If successful, the charity would put the money towards one of its aims, developing an advocacy service for families affected by a brain tumour diagnosis, providing guidance and specialist knowledge to help them understand their options, seek second opinions and ensure communication between all services is as clear as possible.

 

To vote for Finnbar’s Force visit: https://www.aviva.co.uk/good-thinking/community-fund/

 

One-off chance to cycle un-opened NDR

For one day only, cyclists are being invited to explore the westernmost sections of the A1270 Norwich Northern Distributor Road before they are opened to traffic.

The new dual carriageway is nearing completion between the A1067 Fakenham Road and the Drayton Lane roundabout, and these stretches will be open to cyclists from 10am to 4pm on Sunday  October 29 as part of the Norfolk Walking and Cycling Festival. These sections of road, and Drayton Lane to A140 Cromer Road, are expected to be opened to traffic in November, provided good progress is maintained on the major A1270/A140 junction.

Martin Wilby, chairman of Norfolk County Council’s environment, development and transport committee, said: “We are very pleased to give local people a chance to see the road before it’s open to general traffic, and to explore the new cycle-ways and links to Marriott’s Way and communities such as Horsford and Thorpe Marriott.

“This will be a one-off opportunity to ride on a traffic-free main carriageway, but maintaining and improving permanent cycle links is an essential part of the project. Once the whole NDR is finished, it will still be possible to use new and existing paths and quiet lanes to get from Fakenham Road to Postwick without setting foot or bicycle wheel on the road itself.”

Volunteers from main contractor Balfour Beatty, and from Norfolk County Council’s NDR and  ‘Pushing Ahead’  teams will be joined by others to provide supervision at key locations, including the Fir Covert Road and Reepham Road roundabouts, where cyclists will have to crossing live traffic.

John Birchall, NDR public liaison officer, said there had been many requests to run or cycle on the main carriageway before it opens to vehicles. “The 29th is primarily a family cycling event, and explorers will be able to decide for themselves how much of the three miles of dual carriageway or connected paths they ride. We are aiming to focus on runners when the last sections of the route, north of Postwick, are nearing completion next spring.”

Access on and off the NDR itself will be at the Fakenham Road, Fir Covert Road, Reepham Road and Drayton Lane roundabouts, but people coming from further afield will be able to park at the site compound off New Drayton Lane (NR10 3AN). Marriott’s Way also connects to the new cycle paths along the NDR, but is less suitable for road bikes. A leaflet and plan can be downloaded from the Pushing Ahead website.

 Photo: Pashley

 

Youngsters take on new show for latest performance

Talented youngsters will be taking on a new show when Norfolk Youth Music Theatre stages its latest production.
Director Adrian ConnelI was recently tipped off about a show, The Battle of the Boat, that had just been written and was yet unpublished. It had some performances by the National YMT at the Rose Theatre in London to trial it.
He said: “After contacting Ethan Maltby, the composer, to discuss performing the show I realised we had both gone to the same school and Ethan grew up three miles from where I did. It also turned out that I had been his chaperone in Edinburgh in the 1980s when he was a 16-year-old percussionist in the National YMT playing for Whistle Down the Wind. I knew his mother and a trombonist who regularly plays for the Norfolk YMT had played for the Rose Theatre production of The Battle of Boat.”
(The cast includes Aylsham High student Eleanor Diss, from Briggate, Isobel Holroyd, from Aldborough, Megan Howlett, from North Walsham and Mabel White, Aylsham.)
The Battle of Boat is a courageous tale of a group of children trying to find their place in a world at war in 1916. Frustrated by their inability to join the soldiers in battle, the children decide to do whatever it takes to help in the war effort.
However, they soon have to tackle their own conflict in the form of a local gang of bullies who will stop at nothing to see every plan they form fail.
Adrian said: “It’s heartwarming, funny, emotional and exciting and a true celebration of the steadfast British spirit that shone through during WW1.”
The script uses the language and emotions that young children use, particularly from the wartime era. It’s deliberately simple and littered with the nonsense youngsters get up to. Despite its innocence the music is extremely difficult.
Maltby and co-writer Jenna Donnelly began their writing partnership in 2010 with a commissioned piece for the opening of the Kent Youth Games. They went on to write the percussion-musical DrumChasers in 2011, narrated by Stephen Fry.
The show will run November 1-4 at the Maddermarket Theatre, Norwich, 7.30pm nightly, with a 2.30pm matinee on the Saturday. Tickets are £12, concessions available.
Norfolk YMT is taking the show to the Edinburgh Fringe in 2018.

Boxing and chess supporting African schools

A sporting event combining cerebral prowess with boxing agility is being staged in Norwich to support an innovative Norfolk charity that uses technology to deliver education to remote African schools.

Chessboxing sees opponents slug it out and then sit down and swap chess moves in alternating rounds in a sport that truly brings brain and brawn together.

Four bouts are being staged at Norwich OPEN on Saturday, October 21, to raise funds for the Yellobric charity’s work in harnessing technology to deliver eBooks and e-Learning platforms to African schoolchildren.

Yellobric founder Gavin Paterson, who farms at Smallburgh, promised: “It will be much more than a sporting event; we have commentators explaining chess moves, there will be a bar, cabaret, DJ and food and there will be a great atmosphere on the night.”

Among the contestants is 25-year-old former UEA student Cameron Little. Now a geotechnical technician, which involves surveying land across East Anglia as a precursor to development, he has been chessboxing for a year and fights under the name of Hurt Locker.

“I think chessboxing coming to Norwich is great,” he said. “It represents the sport growing beyond the confines of London and into other parts of the UK. As I also used to live in Norwich, I am hopeful a few friends will come out and show support.”

Chessboxing has been described as “a wild mix-up of two of mankind’s oldest sporting obsessions” and sees the winner decided by checkmate or knock-out, whichever comes first.

Cameron’s opponent on the night is Matt Gershfield, aka Jock Talk, a British advertising executive based in Amsterdam. Local fighters from Norwich include Prince Titus Beya-Smiler, known to friends as Lambert and with a fight name of the Prince of Pawn. Lambert studied criminology at UEA and is now a key worker at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust working as a mental health specialist.

Cameron started playing chess when he was 10 but also did Tae Kwon Do for about four years. “I’m used to training hard, but I would consider myself more a chess player who boxes,” he added. “Putting the two sports together is the ultimate test of brawn and brain. Remaining sharp over the board gets more difficult after you’ve exhausted yourself on the boxing and taken hits to the head. Add the pressure – there are maybe 500 people watching you – and it is a real challenge.”

Yellobric was formed by Gavin after a visit to Africa and gained charitable status in November 2011. Over the past six years it has delivered e-Learning platforms to schools in Africa and provided more than 300,000 eBooks at a fraction of the cost of conventional novels and textbooks.

Doors open for the chessboxing event at the OPEN Norwich at 7pm on Saturday, October 21, with the first fight at 8pm. Tickets start at £15 (£12 – NUS). For more information and ticket details visit www.londonchessboxing.com or www.opennorwich.org.uk or call 01603 763111.