Category Archives: Blog

SDN’s is seeking members to contribute to the blog. If you have a burning issue or you want to share something with other members please contact us.

Wheel’s Wonderings contributor is written Ian Pugh a disabled teenager living In Shrewsbury.


Signal’s summer news from Shropshire & Africa

The sun is streaming in through the window as I write to you today, and the sun has certainly been shining on Signal’s projects to help break down the barriers to independence – in social, economic and political life – for people who are deaf or who have hearing impairments. 

In the attached Summer Issue of Wave, Signal’s Chairman Rod Clark announces a momentous development in Shropshire, and our International Programmes Manager Karen Goodman-Jones gives a personal account of the work which is giving deaf children and young people in Uganda and Tanzania a better and a fairer start in life.  Our partners in Zambia are also the subject of The Wave Interview

With all this sunny news, we must not forget that there is much more to do and much hard work to come, as evidenced by requests to our partners in Uganda to expand the programme there, so that deaf children in neighbouring areas can enjoy the same “fairer start.”  There is a suggestion at the end of Wave, too, of how you may be able to help the industrious deaf students in Tanzania on their path towards an independent future. 

Please do share Wave with people you know, particularly if they live in Shropshire, so that ever more people can benefit from our ongoing local initiatives, such as the Sign Language classes.  We will update you on our busy programme in Malawi in the Autumn Issue, but do also keep an eye on our website, if you can, to keep in touch with Signal’s news in the UK and Africa in between times:

Click the link for a PDF copy of the newsletter: Wave_Summer 2014

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Funding Residential or Nursing Care Fees

Funding care fees, fully or even partially, can be an expensive business. Understanding, therefore, what the state provides plus being clear about costs and affordability is essential. This article seeks to outline information which any self-funders should know. 

About the 12-week property disregard

Where, excluding your property, your capital is below the threshold – in England and Northern Ireland, £23,250; in Wales, £24,000; and in Scotland, £26,000 (2014/15) – and your income is insufficient to meet the care fees, the local authority can assist with the costs for the first 12 weeks of permanent care. Any financial help beyond that period, however, will be a loan against the value of your property and recovered from the eventual proceeds of its sale. 

About deferred payments agreements

If social services has assessed you as needing care and your capital is below the threshold, they can lend you the funds to pay for care, to be repaid from the proceeds of your property when it is ultimately sold. There is, however, a limit to the amount they will lend you. Plus it could also adversely affect your means-tested benefit entitlements. 

About Council Tax exemption

Should you move into care and leave your property unoccupied, you should be entitled to a full exemption from Council Tax until it’s sold. 

About Pension Credit and Severe Disability Addition

If you are entitled to Attendance Allowance, then subject to your savings and income, you may be entitled to claim Pension Credit with a Severe Disability Addition, but only where your property is on the market. If it is not on the market, it will almost certainly be treated as capital and affect your entitlement to this benefit. 

About Attendance Allowance

Attendance Allowance is a non-means-tested, non-taxable allowance paid at the lower rate of £54.45 per week to those needing care by day or night, and at a higher rate of £81.30 per week for those needing care both by day and night. 

About Registered Nursing Care Contributions

Irrespective of whether your stay in care is temporary or permanent, if the care home provides nursing care, the NHS makes a Registered Nursing Care Contribution. This currently amounts to weekly contributions of £110.89 in England, £120.55 in Wales, £100.00 in Northern Ireland and £75.00 (plus £166.00 for personal care) in Scotland and is paid directly to the care home. 

About the National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare

Where your needs are primarily healthcare-related, you may be entitled to full care fees funding from your local Primary Care Trust following an assessment under the National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare. You can request a review of eligibility at any time. 

About local authority funding if your money runs out

Once your capital reduces to the threshold, you can seek local authority assistance. If there is any possibility that you will not be able to meet the full cost of your care in the long term, arrange an assessment of your care needs to ensure they will step in to help with the funding when required. 

About financial products to meet care costs

It is perhaps surprising that there exists only one dedicated financial product that has been specifically designed to meet care costs: the immediate needs annuity. This can provide a regular increasing income for as long as you need care, which should cap the cost of care from the outset. It is important, however, to seek advice and not to try to do it alone, as such annuities do not suit all circumstances. 

Click the link to learn more:

internet site link button

To receive a complimentary guide covering Wealth Management, Retirement Planning, Inheritance Tax Planning or Care Fees Planning, produced by St. James’s Place Wealth Management, contact Neil Lewis of Lewis Wealth Management Ltd on 01743 444700 or email Lewis Wealth Management at

Lewis Wealth Management Ltd represents only St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of advising solely on the Group’s wealth management products and services, more details of which are set out on the Group’s website The title ‘Partner Practice’ is the marketing term used to describe St. James’s Place representatives.

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Baggins Blog – All Things Mental Health

400 Years of Petitioning; Advocating; Campaigning For Better MentalHealth Services 

Lynda Jones

Did you know that as early as 1620 Patients in psychiatric hospitals were coming together to speak out with the petition of ‘ the Poor Distracted Folk of Bedlam.’ In 1845 the ‘Alleged Lunatics’ Friend Society’ was set up by John Perceval his aims were- Quote: “Protection of the British from unjust confinement on the grounds of Mental Disorder and the redress of Persons so confined.”John was himself a MH Service-user having witnessed the assassination of his Prime Minister father Robert Perceval when he was just 9 years old. John was the forerunner to MH Advocacy. 

Now let’s fast forward to 1960′s The brave new world of Civil Rights Movement, lots of social changes came about empowering people towards collective and individual Civil Rights. Now we move to 1970s the time that alliances were beginning to be made between patients and professionals giving MH Service -users a greater say in improving conditions on Wards. Charities such as MIND and National Schizophrenia Fellowship (now RETHINK) were formed. So moving on to 1980s Which saw formations of local Service-user Forums such as Nottingham Advocacy Group- NAG- aptly named because that is what we did! 

So the question I would like to ask you all is: 

After 400 years of hard work Campaigning; Advocating; Petitioning.

What have achieved towards this in the present day of 2014? 

A Mental health blog written for SDN by Lynda Jones

The Sun Has Got His Hat On!

The sun has finally arrived and what better time to get outside and try something new. From an amble around the Quarry to trying a new activity such as cycling there’s lots going on but often we just don’t know how to get started. 

If you currently do little or no physical activity or sport and who want to get fit and healthier then look no further.  Loughborough University have produced a series of guides to help.

Terri Graham, a research assistant in the Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport (PHC) at Loughborough University who compiled the resource, said:

“The aim of the guides is to improve peoples’ understanding of what they can do to improve their health and fitness as a disabled person.

“All of the disability-specific information they may normally have to spend hours searching for is now all in one place. It allows the reader to progress at their own pace through the guide, or they can simply dip into topics that are relevant to them.”

The guides are available in print format and are downloadable online at Hard copies are also available so please give me a ring if you would like me to send you one.

In my role as disability lead at the County Sports Partnership I feel very lucky to work with some incredibly passionate people around the county who are striving to make sure sporting opportunities are available for all. So committed are these individuals that we now meet quarterly to share ideas and opportunities.  Even better than this is that we take it in turns to host the meetings which gives us an opportunity to see different parts of the county and the great work that is taking place within our community.  Our last meeting was held at Albrighton Trust.  Featured previously on the SDN website this is a MUST SEE.  Offering educational and recreational activities for disabled and SEN children and young people I couldn’t think of a better place to spend a morning discussing disability sport.  Through hardwork and determination Sandie and her small team have created a wonderfully inclusive setting.  This I’m happy to say is just one of many excellent facilities that Shropshire has to offer. 

And finally, hopefully you’ve already read about the SDN Gold Challenge.  I met with Ruby a number of weeks ago and she was bubbling with excitement about the challenge.  Sometimes we all need that little bit of extra motivation to get us going, whether its walking to the shops rather than taking the car or doing that thai chi class that we’ve always said we would do.  Last weekend as the sun was burning down on my shoulders as I struggled round the Shrewsbury half marathon I needed that little bit of extra motivation.  The crowds support was fantastic and the fact that I could get home and log 21kms as part of the SDN Gold Challengers  goal of achieving 2014km by the end of the year made it all the more worthwhile.  I encourage you to join the teams completing in the SDN Gold Challenge, every metre counts and together we can hopefully achieve our goal of raising £2014 for SDN. 

Helen Freedman

01743 453497

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Raising Awareness of SDN at Telford PRH

Paula, Margaret & Ian do a sterling job at Princess Royal Hospital, Telford (PRH) raising awareness of SDN 

All of us on the Management Committee are pleased with the way our Outreach Officer for Telford, Ian Roberts is taking a lead on raising awareness of our work at the PRH. We had our second day there on Wednesday 3 June. 

Regrettably we were short of volunteers! Shropshire is a large county &it is our intention to raise awareness, raise funds and meet you where you are by having meetings etc across the county. Ideally SDN needs a group of volunteers in each area. At the moment we are building on this in Shrewsbury, Telford and Oswestry but it takes time and without your help, it can not be done so if you can help, , we would be grateful. Telford is no different to our awareness days at Morrisons Oswestry as we need at least 3 people volunteering for each hour. 

These days at PRH are very important to us. From early days at SDN we have had a saying  Well, we are working on it but still have a long way to go. So what do we do when we are at PRH? We talk to people if they want to talk with us, we share information by giving leaflets to those who want them, we meet many nice people & share many conversations and during that time we often use our signposting skills. The funding gained is an “add on” that we really appreciate. Few people complete membership forms on the day, but recent new memberships coming in via Telford people indicates they have come to us as a result of PRH awareness days. This shows SDN is needed there just the same as other places we go. 

So why are we taking this opportunity to increase our funds? Leaflets need to be replaced, printed newsletters need to be paid for but that is not all, we have insurance to pay, a website to maintain, a printer to run and more. Until now, we have had to take our information back and forth to Telford. Ian as Outreach Officer needs to keep a case with information “on hand” at Telford as He needs it for PRH regularly as well as other places/ ie ensuring membership forms, leaflets etc are put in public places in Telford. We can’t keep ferrying information to Telford and anyway they may be needed in both Shrewsbury and Telford. 

We are grateful to those who have helped at both our Telford days at PRH. Thank you to all. We need to ask you to support Ian your Outreach Officer at Telford.

 Thank you Ian, Margaret & Paula for all you are doing for Shropshire Disability Network in the Telford area, it is appreciated by all of us.

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My Journey to get an Assistance Dog

My name is Sam, and this is my blog about my journey to get an assistance dog. I am twenty-two, a keen video gamer and writer, I have a disability, and six pet rats. 

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The first thing people would say if I said this is either “Rats?!” (With a tone of voice ranging from eew – aww!). The second thing said would probably be a comment on my disability, ranging from “You don’t look disabled!”, “I would never have guessed!”, and, of course, the infamous awkwardness where people withdraw and treat me differently on learning of my disability status, to be fair, probably because they don’t know what to say. 

I have Asperger Syndrome, hand and feet deformities, and mental health conditions. I’m looking forward to the day when both pet rats and disability become a topic of conversation that isn’t controversial, and believe that will happen in my lifetime (For disability at least anyway! Although I hope it does for pet rats too!). 

But to get to that stage, better education on all types of disabilities needs to be provided to both abled and disabled people. 

I believe assistance dogs are a powerful tool not only for the people with disabilities they serve, but for abled people to some extent as well. As a disabled person, when I see an assistance dog out in public with its owner, be it a guide dog, a hearing dog, an autism assistance dog, I see hope. I see someone that’s receiving support that often councils are unable to give, family and friends could be unable to give (Not everyone has family or friends anyway), from an animal that has often been trained not only just for its owners condition, but for the specific owner. 

For an abled person, however, the dog represents something so much more. It represents the fact that disabled people have their own place in society, and are equals. It represents that yes, disabled people can struggle with some tasks, but given the right support they can flourish. And it represents a friendly (fluffy?) face that is a bridge to help make conversations just that little bit easier on both abled and disabled people. 

As a young adult with autism, I struggle with social interaction with people I don’t know. An assistance dog would act as a bridge for me – someone familiar to be my constant, so I can go out and use public transport such as trains and buses on my own, so I can ground my hands in its fur to soothe myself as I talk to strangers and acquaintances. At the thought of meeting new people I can already feel my stomach churning – an assistance dog would help alleviate that anxiety. 

They can be trained to either bark or paw at the owner’s leg as if they need the toilet if you make a hand signal at them – providing an excuse to get out of lessons, volunteering, training, or work if the owner is too anxious. It’s good to say autistic people can leave class at any time if needed, but it’s not always that easy. When I need to go, I need to go before I have a meltdown (Type of anxiety attack), not in five or ten minutes after the teacher has finished talking to me. 

Dogs can be trained to lie on you like a weighted blanket at night if they feel you shifting about a lot in the night – a method that reduces anxiety in autistic children and adults, without the internalised stigma of using a weighted blanket. Or, for an owner with anxieties in crowds, to ‘block’ between the owner and the crowds. 

So there we have some of my reasons behind needing an assistance dog. But how am I going to go about getting one? I’ve got to admit, it’s not going to be easy, but it’s something I need to do. There is one charity in the UK that trains up assistance dogs for autistic children – but only up to ten years old. There is also one that trains up assistance dogs for adults with mental health conditions, but their waiting list has been full and closed for a year or more. My current option I am looking into is a company in Ireland that trains assistance dogs. It costs £5000, plus 23% VAT (Which is not currently claimable back, but is probable that it will be after a court ruling in the future that the dogs are a necessary disability aid.) Then there is the cost of a ferry, and accommodation for a week for myself, my Mum and my support worker to go over to personalise the training of the dog. 

Overall, the cost is £7000, which will be my main barrier. I am hoping to do some fundraising, sell some things, possibly do some fundraising events such as bake sales, sponsoring, etc. It’s very early days, but I am hopeful that this is something that could make a real difference to my life and enable me to mostly live independently. 

I hope you enjoyed reading my blog, keep tuning in for another update soon! 



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A Challenge with a Huge Difference

A Challenge with a Huge Difference-Is it possible to take a straight line route across Britain?

The Challenge called “Beeline Britain” is raising money for BLESMA. 

Beeline Britain Team 1

Lands End to John 0′Groats would be a challenge to many of us, but this Challenge is one that has never been attempted before! On May 18th a team of four started on there mission. It took numerous months of planning, training, overcoming obstacles for Beeline Britain to happen! So what is so different & why are they attempting this? 

Many of us have met Nick Beighton, now a retired Captain after having spent several years in the Royal Engineers. Nick came to our meeting last December & gave a very thought provoking & inspiring talk about His life before & after becoming a double, above knee amputee the result of stepping on an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) while on duty in 2009 in Helmand Province. After Nick’s talk, many of you commented on how inspiring He was, it even challenged some of us by making us look at our lives differently. So inspired, I know some of you are following the Beeline Britain journey of Face Book, but I have decided to share this with you as not all of us use Social Media. 

We all know to take the traditional route from Lands End to John 0′Groats is a big challenge that is used by many people as a way to raise money for charity. This challenge is so different as to complete Beeline Britain, the team will have to travel 1,100 km on some of the UK‘s most difficult terrain, it will involve 100 hours in a kayak, 34 hours on a bike and over 12 hours on foot. The journey will be completed by sea kayaking, hand bike/road bike as well a mountaineering! Places along the route include the Isle of Man, Burrow Head, Lossiemouth, Wick. plus a section of mountaineering over the Cairngorms plateaux, one of the most exposed mountain ranges in the UK. It really does sound impossible. 

Beeline Britan Team

Team Beeline Britain is made up of Tori James, aged 25. She became the youngest British woman and the first Welsh woman to climb to the summit of Mount Everest.

Adam Harmer another team member is a senior lecturer at Liverpool John Moores University and professional outdoor instructor at the UK’s National Mountain Centre, Plas-y-Brenin. RAF helicopter crewman, Ian O’Grady is another team member. Ian is 37 and originated from Oswestry. Then 32 year old Nick is the fourth team member. 

This challenge is being supported by The Endeavour Fund (created by The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry), and will raise money for BLESMA, the charity for limbless servicemen and women and their families.

They aim to raise £20,000 for BLESMA, the limbless veterans’ charity which supported Nick after his accident. Nick suffered serious multiple injuries and needed extensive rehabilitation. 

Last December Nick during His presentation told us “Having no legs is a driving factor behind everything I do. It is not an excuse to do nothing, it’s a reason to do more”.  The trickiest part of this challenge for Nick is the kayaking as usually this sport is so reliant on a persons legs to brace and balance the boat. To overcome this He designed a false bulkhead, built to support His stumps underneath, enabling them to be in the correct position to help stabilise the kayak. For cycling Nick will use a made to measure handbike enabling Him to reach speeds of 80mph, allowing him to cover 120km a day. That is not all because on the mountaineering part of the journey Nick will use special crutches that he bought from a company in America, He then adapted these in His own garage so that they will be able to cope with the load going through them. For Nick, his upper body strength is vital. 

This is one amazing challenge, they have already reached Linn of Dee in Aberdeen.(7th June 2014)  Throughout their training in preparing for this epic challenge many radio stations and newspapers carried out interviews. Along the way Beeline Britain support team have been out and about meeting locals and promoting BLESMA as well as encouraging the team as they pass through each area. 

Now Beeline Britain is on the final part of the challenge, we should be hearing new radio interviews and see new press releases however, if you want to see how the team are doing, even donate go to This website is updated daily and has a wealth of information to be read. 

Shropshire Disability Network wishes Nick & Beeline Britain all the best and when time allows, we would be pleased to have a blog from them about their epic  to share with our members. 

Photograph shows Tori James, Ian O’Grady, NickBeighton and Adam Harmer while on part of the journey via Isle of Man.

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Making Hearts Beat Faster – Guest Blog from Helen Freedman

“Over the last half century we have stopped moving, in our towns, workplaces, schools and cities – and how we get between them. This slow-down in activity has serious consequences to our health and economy; physical inactivity leads to 37,000 deaths per year in the UK more than from murder, suicide and accidents combined.” [1]
The latest document from the All Party Commission “Tackling Physical Inactivity – A Co-ordinated Approach” explores a long-term vision for the integration of physical activity into everybody’s everyday lives. Yet the stark reality is that disabled people are still half as likely to be active as non-disabled people and a recent report identifies that the majority of current sport and physical activity initiatives, aimed at disabled people, are failing to engage audiences effectively. helen

Energize, the County Sports Partnership shares a belief that opening up people’s horizons to the joy of sporting activity enables each and every person to find something that makes their heart beat faster. Therefore our challenge is to work with our local partners to make these opportunities available so that everybody can find something that appeals to them.  However a recent report by the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) suggests that the reason for low participation is often because the opportunities and their promotion tend to focus on the audience’s disability or impairment and miss the emotional connection required to attract disabled people. So perhaps we need to start approaching things differently…….

Over the next couple of months I aim to give you a taster of sporting events and opportunities that are taking place in the county, but I also want to hear your ideas and I will try and answer any questions related to sport and physical activity.  

Earlier this year I attended the SDN meeting when Captain Nick Beighton, Ben Rowlings and Tony Lawrence spoke.  I felt incredibly inspired by all of the presentations and Energize are exciting that Nick has helped us out in inspiring young people through the School Games programme and Ben has previously won an Energize award in our Annual Awards ceremony.  However it was Tony, a qualified tai chi instructor who introduced himself as physically ‘at the other end of the spectrum’ that opened my eyes somewhat.  As the County Sports our vision is ‘to enable sport and physical activity to be a part of everybody’s everyday life’ and this needs to be across the whole spectrum.

Community Games[2] is just one example of an activity that focuses on involvement and enjoyment and links with that emotional connection I mentioned previously.  A recent community games event delivered to SEN children focusing on the principles of rugby such as teamwork, respect, discipline and sportsmanship in an enjoyable setting. This was a fantastic event enjoyed by all and demonstrated the role that sport can play in young people’s lives. 

I’ve also learned about an event that is planned in the Quarry to run alongside parkrun.  Grace Hough wrote about Shrewsbury parkrun in a previous ‘Your voice’. It’s been running (excuse the pun) in the Quarry for just over 6 months.  As someone mention last week “I don’t think you would get 300 people in the gym all at 9am on a Saturday morning”.  While parkrun is a fully inclusive event attracting a wide range of participants the Young Health Champions have identified the need to design a shorter course for people who want to do just 3k.  This event will capitalise on the buzz generated by park run, with participants starting at the same time and completing the DART (Disability Accessible Run Time). Hopefully the first event will take place on 19th July – watch this space!

To find out more information  about any of the items included in the article please email

[1]                      All Party Commission on Tackling Physical Inactivity

[2]                      More information on organising a Community Games in Shropshire, Telford or Wrekin can be found on the Energize website. Click here to find out about organising a Community Games


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See & Hear Shropshire 2014

SDN has a stand at this Wednesday’s See Hear Exhibition. You can see the details here: In the meantime here is the latest news update from Pauline Rose.

The latest on the See & Hear Event Programme for Wednesday 14th May 2014 10am to 4pm at Shrewsbury Sports Village.   

I am extremely grateful for the support of Shropshire and Telford CCG Commissioners whose attendance at the event will enable us to have the RNIB Eye Pod. 

Eye Pod

The RNIB Eye Pod sight loss simulator is coming to See and Hear Shropshire 2014, urging councillors, residents and public health professionals to make eye health a priority in their decision making. The futuristic pod has giant eyes connected to viewers that participants look through to experience conditions such as glaucoma and cataracts. We are working with local councils and clinical commissioning groups to improve access to treatments and raise awareness of the causes of avoidable sight loss.

Following on from last year’s theme we are promoting health and wellbeing, preventing avoidable sight loss.

There will be some new ideas and thought provoking activities, which will hopefully create another wonderful opportunity for everyone to take part in and assimilate what the day has to offer. 

I am very excited at what should be an amazing Event; both in terms of the publicity that the Exhibition has generated this time but also by the full and exhaustive programme for the day. 

I am sure that you will already be aware the day is a great opportunity for peer support, networking, gaining knowledge and sharing information with others and is important to everyone; it highlights how Healthy Lifestyles can prevent avoidable Sight Loss.  Recent studies show that smoking more than doubles the risk of developing Age-related macular degeneration. 

In light of this, it is vitally important to make people aware and encourage them to take advantage of the complimentary Eye Screening on offer by the Local Optical Committee. There will be Hearing screening by Audiology and carers’ assessments by People 2 People as well as other routine health checks and this time we have over 65 Exhibitors with stands.  

I would be pleased if you could encourage Social Workers and any of your contacts through the Care Services to attend as I am sure this would be hugely beneficial to both themselves and others who are taking part in the event. 

Sight and Sound Technology are offering workshops on the Respexi Home Tablet which is a new touchscreen tablet that provides a ‘window to the world’ by way of a simple interface for instant messaging, reminders, face-to-face video calls, photographs and radio.  Helping to create a safer home-living environment, enabling people to stay living in their own homes for longer, Respexi offers peace-of-mind to family, friends and carers. 

There will be the Guide Dogs’ sensory tunnel and obstacle course to experience life without sight and how a guide dog might help people, again to remain as independent as possible. 

The Braille Forum will give an understanding in the use of portable braille devices, working with Android, Iphones and Ipads.  Also there will be Seeing Skills sessions run by the Macular Society. 

We have full use of the Sports Village and there will also be Sports taster sessions, including the climbing wall and a fitness instructor will be available to talk to visitors, provide BMI results and fitness programmes. 

The Sports Village have also given us their assurance that the refreshments and facilities will be well organised and include a Hog Roast.  

Shropshire Public Health, include Shropshire Heart Age Testing and Healthy Shropshire will be including smoking cessation, physical activity, healthy eating, weight and alcohol management. 

The Event gets bigger and better each year so please have a look at the See and Hear Shropshire 2014 webpage for more information, which will be continually updated as the programme evolves link: telephone Pauline Rose on 01584 871420 

I hope that you will be able to attend and enjoy the day as I am sure it will evoke a great atmosphere and be a very pleasurable and rewarding experience. 

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New Benefits Rates for Carers – Information from Social Welfare Training

Neil Arnott at Social Welfare Training has sent through their latest poster (download at the bottom of the page) and details of the latest changes to benefits.

  • State Retirement Pension is being uprated by 2.7% in line with the government’s “triple lock” commitment.
  • the Standard Minimum Guarantee in Pension Credit will be increased to give an equivalent to the cash increase in basic State Pension. The Savings Credit maximum is being reduced.
  • premiums paid to disabled people receiving working-age benefits, and to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) claimants in the Support Group, will be uprated by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) at 2.7%.
  • working-age benefits (main rates) including main elements of Universal Credit and HB personal allowances will be uprated by 1%.
  • The Carers Allowance earnings threshold(above which Carers Allowance is not payable) is increased from £100 to £102.
  • The following stay the same as last year- the Benefit Cap levels ,  childcare costs rates and the capital rules.  
  • Housing Benefit non dependent deductions have been increased by a large amount over the last 3 years and are increased again this year.   

                                                                                                                                                              2013/14  2014/15                                                                                                                      







Non-dependant deductions



Aged under 25 and on IS or JSA(IB) or ESA(IR) which does not include an amount for the support component or work-related activity component  



Aged 25 or over and on IS or JSA(IB), or aged 18 or over and not in remunerative work



In receipt of main phase ESA(IR)



In receipt of Pension Credit



Aged 18 or over and in remunerative work



- gross income less than £128:



- gross income not less than £128.00 but less than £188.00



- gross income not less than £188.00 but less than £245.00



- gross income not less than £245.00 but less than £326.00



- gross income not less than £326.00 but less than £406.00



- gross income not less than £406.00



For more details of this and for information about Social Welfare  click here Social Welfare Training 2014-15 A4 poster web version