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Blaby District
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Leics AgeUK.   Making Christmas Special

So how can you donate?

1. Visit the website of Leicester’s Hospitals ( <>) or Age UK ( <>) to download and print a gift tag.

2. Write your message on the gift tag and tick whether the gift is suitable for a man, suitable for a woman, or suitable for anyone.

3. Attach the tag to a small gift bag containing unwrapped gifts such as lip balm, hand lotion, slipper socks, bed socks, biscuits, sweets, cereal bars, hot chocolate or coffee sachets, pens, pencils, and puzzle books. The websites have a full list of what could be donated and what we cannot accept.

4. Take your gift bag/s to the main receptions at the Royal Infirmary, General or Glenfield Hospital or to any Age UK Leicester Shire & Rutland shop or resource centre in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.

5. Donations can be made throughout November and up until Friday 13th December 2019.
Older people spending Christmas in one of Leicester’s Hospitals will once again receive a gift bag this year, donated by the generous local community.

‘Making Christmas Special’ is a collaborative campaign between Leicester’s Hospitals, Age UK Leicester Shire & Rutland and Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT). Every year, there are patients too ill to leave hospital and spend Christmas Day with their loved ones. ‘Making Christmas Special’ aims to spread a little festive cheer to older patients who will be spending Christmas in one of Leicester’s Hospitals. Now in its seventh year, the campaign is encouraging the local community to donate a small gift bag that will be distributed by hospital staff and volunteers on Christmas Day.

In 2018, the public of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland showed fantastic generosity by donating over 1,500 gifts. In past years, the campaign has been so successful that donated gifts exceeded the need in Leicester’s Hospitals and could be shared with some community hospitals. There are gift tags to download and packaging and gift guidelines on the Leicester Hospitals website.
It has saved an estimated more than £360,000 for the local economy, with medium to long-term savings estimated at around £2.1 million.

From the installation of grab rails to small house extensions, Lightbulb is focused on making sure that residents can stay independent in their homes for as long as possible, benefitting both the local health economy and the wellbeing of those individuals supported through Lightbulb.

These relatively small changes have a big impact, enabling individuals to live more comfortably in their own homes, instead of having to consider a move to supported accommodation.

Residents requiring minor or major adaptations can contact Lightbulb by calling 0116 305 0004 or visit

Lightbulb Programme continued success

More than 5,400 people across Leicestershire have benefited from a pioneering housing support partnership in its first two years. Lightbulb is a centralised service, hosted by Blaby District Council, in partnership with Leicestershire County Council, district councils, local Clinical Commissioning Groups, Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust.

Fully launched in 2017, Lightbulb has seen a drastic reduction in the processing time for residents’ Disability Facilities Grant applications from enquiry to completion, reducing from 48.5 weeks before launch to 20 weeks across all Districts.

The latest customer satisfaction ratings have seen 100% of those surveyed confirm that Lightbulb had met their expectations.

The improvement in the time taken to deliver adaptations in homes across the county has also ensured that focus can be spent on more complex cases, as well as delivering 37% more cases overall than was projected at the planning stage two years ago.
£83,000 has been put towards pilot partnership projects to help the Council support people with complex needs and underlying health concerns. This funding helps to look at ways of reducing the demand on Council Tax payers and enhancing residents’ lives.

The remaining £100,000 will go towards developing a larger scheme with Leicester City Council to enhance cycling and walking networks linked to the Sustrans National Cycling Network and the City Centre. The potential project would cover highways road and pathways improvements/enhancements, including improved signage, surfacing, maps, lighting, secure cycle racks etc.

The projects would be delivered in conjunction with City and County Councils, Parishes, local Businesses and Business Parks, Rutland Cycling and Sustrans.
Key services at Blaby District Council are set to benefit following a £400,000 boost from a pilot scheme. After entering a joint bid with Leicestershire County Council, Leicester City Council, Leicestershire Fire & Rescue Service and District Councils to be part of the Government’s Business Rate Retention Scheme pilot, the Council was successful in securing nearly £400,000 which will be reinvested back into important services.

This funding will be spread across four areas of the Council. £100,000 to tackle homelessness will be made available following the Council’s increase in demand for the temporary accommodation of residents, like many other local authorities nationally.

As the main town centre in the District of Blaby, the Council recognises the need to invest in support for the town during a national trend of stores closing their doors. £100,000 of funding has been made available by Councillors for this support. A dedicated officer will be appointed with the funding to shape how the Council supports the District’s town and village centres and help to make improvements.

Pilot funding to boost district

We listened with rapt attention to Sylvia Bosworth as she spoke about the life and achievements of the master of language and metaphor - W H Auden. Sylvia read extracts of “The Night Mail” and “Stop the Clocks”, just two of his well loved poems.

A delightful speech was delivered by Marion Broomhead entitled “The Humble Loaf”. Bread making has its origins in Egypt more than eight thousand years ago and nowadays we are spoilt for choice. She ended with some sound advice, “You will never go hungry if you have a loaf and a jar of jam!”

“That Little White Ball” was the topic of John Baron’s speech telling us of the history and origins of golf. In 1389 the citizens of Haarlem in the Netherlands were given a field for the sole use of playing Colf (which evolved into Golf - an ancient Scottish verb ‘to strike’).
The first rules of golf were established in 1774 by The Gentlemen of Leith. Did you know in 1457 King James II of Scotland banned the playing of golf and football? This decision was made to preserve the skills of archery.

The Leicestershire Speakers welcome anyone who would like to learn the art of speaking in public. We meet at 7.30pm on the second Wednesday of each month at the Blaby Drop in Centre. For more information ring Bev Capewell on 0116 2770266 or visit our website We can also provide entertainment and talks to other societies and groups.

Proprioception is the mechanism by which your body recognises movement and position - you should know where your body parts are in relation to each other without having to look! This is vital for hand-eye coordination and essential for any sport or exercise. Information is conveyed from special receptors in the joints, tendons, ligaments and muscles to the brain.

This is particularly important in the knee and ankle as it enables you to subtly adjust your body weight to walk on slopes and uneven surfaces. If you have sprained your ankle in the past the ligaments and their proprioceptors will have been over-stretched and you are at a greater risk of re-injury. If it is dark for example and you do not have your vision to compensate, you are at increased risk of stumbling and even falling. This is also likely after a knee ligament injury, especially if your cruciate ligaments have been damaged.
If you twist or swivel (eg on changing direction) your knee may give way. It is therefore vital to be assessed and advised by a Chartered Physiotherapist - however long ago the original injury was. The same applies after a whiplash injury, you may inadvertently be holding your head tilted to one side, or you may drift into people when walking on a busy pavement.

Test your own proprioception:  Stand on one leg - then close your eyes. Do you feel unstable and wobble? Is one leg better than the other? Is your balance generally poor? Are you prone to falls or walking into things? Do you ever feel dizzy?

If the answer to any of these questions is "yes" a Physiotherapist can teach you some very simple exercises to improve this. It is important to address these issues before you hurt yourself.

To see a physiotherapist privately you do not need to be referred by your doctor.

Balance and Proprioception

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