…STOP PRESS…200TH MEMBER JOINED 1ST FEB… 200th MEMBER JOINED  1ST FEB…

HOSPITAL MERGER SPECIAL MEETING

 Gerard Sammon pictured here with our Chairman Roger Bryan, spoke at the special meeting in Swanley explaining that for hospital mergers, bigger is now seen as better!  ‘Bigger’ means serving a population of 500,000 or more and ‘better’ means more cost effective.  He argued very clearly that at this time only a bigger hospital organisation could continue to provide the services we need.  He explained that this was the reason  behind recent Maidstone/Pembury changes.  One Member commented that whilst she understood what the hospital was trying to do, ‘if they can’t sort out the public transport, individuals will still suffer’.  If you would like a copy of the full notes from the meeting let us know. See also the item on Blue Badge parking (Easy Targets) on page 3 which challenges what we are (not) told.

 

Edenbridge Open Forum  Friday, 9 March 2012 3pm to 5pm    

Rickards Hall, 72 High Street, Edenbridge TN8 5AR

Speakers:  Jon Weller (VAWK), TV Digital Switchover 

Sarah Pearson,  Boomerang Project 

Update on “Transport Access to Hospitals” survey and campaign 

Open Forum for questions and answers.


CREDIT CARD SCAM – KENT POLICE NEWS RELEASE

Be aware – conmen have already scammed at least three people in the Sevenoaks area.  They phone up and pretend to be from the Bank.  A ‘courier’ turns up, collects the bank card and money disappears from your accounts.  If you get a call, seemingly from the Bank, call your Bank on the number you know to check – if unsure, call the police.

SDSAF PUBLIC MEETINGS IN 2012 ALL AT 3 PM

If any details here change we’ll tell you in the newsletter.  9th March at Edenbridge, see above, 11th May [AGM] in Sevenoaks, 13th July at Hartley, 14th September at Westerham, and 9th November at Kemsing.

HIGH COSTS AT THE PETROL PUMP

Amazing Fuel Cost Tip 2 – from someone who works in the oil industry – ‘Don’t wait until you are nearly empty to fill up’.  Your fuel tank is a big box and the fuel will evaporate more when it’s nearly empty than when it’s nearly full – because there is more room for the gases to fill up!     

THE KISS OF LIFE?

There is some debate going on at the moment about Emergency Life Support (ELS) skills with Vinnie Jones telling us on TV about ‘Hands only CPR’ which is a lot easier to say than CardioPulmonary Resuscitation.  The British Heart Foundation is promoting Heartstart schemes so that you can learn what to do in an emergency.  Call 0300 330 3311(local rate number) or see http://www.bhf.org.uk/heart-health/how-we-help/training/heartstart-uk.aspx for details.  

SEVENOAKS DEMENTIA CAFE

The Sevenoaks Dementia Café used to be at the Hollybush Court Centre in Sevenoaks but in January it moved to The Lodge Café in the Stag Theatre in Sevenoaks. 

Their website says; ‘The cafés are not merely a social get-together in a café-style environment, but rather the careful combination and structuring of low-level intervention of information, knowledge and support offered within an informal and understanding environment.’  For info on cafés and other services across the County call 01732 370 330 or contact  www.dementiawebkentandmedway.org.uk/dementia-cafe.html

 

LOFT INSULATION

EDF Energy has just topped up the insulation in my loft for free and they’re not my energy supplier.  I had five inches or so of yellow stuff in my mostly boarded loft.  Over the last couple of years, and whilst I still can, I have been moving rubbish out of my loft including the cardboard cartons I kept just in case something has to go back – which was a bit daft really because most of the things that I might have taken back have already gone for recycling!  I now have about 11 inches (270mm to be precise) of insulation AND I CAN FEEL THE DIFFERENCE!  The thermostat has gone DOWN and I will be saving money and I am just as warm.  Conditions apply and they vary from one company to the next.  It’s worth a look!  For more details, call 0800 316 2805, or go to http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/utilities/free-cavity-loft-insulation#tescooffer

If you feel your health is at risk or know someone who may be vulnerable from cold temperatures this winter, please call 0800 028 3172 (freephone) for further support.

The Sevenoaks and Tonbridge branches of AGE UK have merged.  AGE UK has been given £5000 in West Kent under the Warmer Homes Initiative.  More details when I get them.

HEALTH AND TRANSPORT SURVEY

We launched our survey on transport to hospital and doctors and so on in January, so we don’t have a response from everyone yet, we’ll let you know what we find out when we’ve found it out.

GRANSNET

http://www.gransnet.com has lots of useful information on all kinds of Gran (and Grandpa) things.

 

 

Sevenoaks and Tonbridge Age UK branches have merged.

 

THE DIGITAL SWITCHOVER IS ON THE WAY!

From April of this year, the way you receive your TV pictures is changing, if you have done nothing about the switchover yet it’s time to do so now or you will have no programmes to watch.  Call 08456 50 50 50 or see www.digitaluk.co.uk/home .  People have been scammed all over the country by crooks taking advantage of this changeover – so don’t pay anyone to ‘help you’ with the changeover without taking proper advice.  More Info from an expert at the Edenbridge meeting (see the EVENTS page on this website).

EASY TARGETS part 2 – Open Relationships?

One way that SDSAF works is by trying to make sure that we give our Members real facts.  Since early December 2011 we have tried to get Darent Valley Hospital to explain why they are now charging £1 per visit to Blue Badge Holders.  They claim it is to fund works on increasing disabled spaces from 22 to 60 in a bigger car park (sorry, I wrote 50 in the last newsletter).  Two phone calls, one conversation in person, THIRTEEN emails out and no one will tell us the cost of the works.  Astonishingly, their press office suggests that we request the information under the Freedom of Information Act.  It seems a cynical manipulation when they give the reason for the charge as an improvement for blue badge holders but state that the charge will be imposed long past when the costs have been recouped (sounds like the Dartford Toll promises again).  Why don’t they just come straight out and say it’s a way of raising more money for the company that owns the car park.   When people in authority act this way they undermine their credibility.  It makes one doubt their next public statement.   

THE PARALYMPICS AND LOCAL TRAIN TRAVEL

Sevenoaks Station has been designated the ‘venue station’ for Brands Hatch.  The Paralympics Road Cycling takes place at Brands from 5 to 8 September 2012.  Meanwhile, it is hoped that Swanley station’s step free access works will be completed in time for the event. 

 Thank you to our supporters! KCC, SDC, VAWK, Age UK, West Kent, West Kent Extra    

PARTING SHOT?    Wine does not make you FAT. 

It makes you LEAN …. (against tables, chairs, floors, walls…)

© 2012 Sevenoaks District Seniors Action Forum Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha