Monthly Archives: January 2019

End-of-Life Swan Scheme launched at RJ and AH Hospital

A national initiative to help improve end-of-life care for patients and their families has been adopted by staff at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH).

The Oswestry-based hospital has formally pledged its support to the implementation of the Swan Scheme – a national initiative, first launched by Salford Royal NHS Trust, which aims to support patients in their final days of life and their families into bereavement and beyond.

The Swan model of care is about providing individualised end-of-life and bereavement care for every patient and their family. The Trust will be purchasing Swan boxes, which will be given to the families of dying patients and will contain relative support information leaflets, toiletries for the patient or their loved ones, a small pack of tissues, a small ribbon-tie bag for jewellery or a hair lock, and a bag for any of their belongings.

The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the Princess Royal Hospital Trust launched  “Swan” schemes in 2017.

To read the full story about Oswestry Orthopaedic Hospital joining in this scheme click here:

Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy – further updates

Start Date:
25th January 2019

End Date:
22nd February 2019

Start Time:

End Time:

Last year, Shropshire Disability Network submitted a “collective” response to Shropshire Council on their proposed changes to Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy. Many individuals as well as organisations also responded to the consultation. Shropshire Council have now provided updates and are seeking further responses. This consultation opened on Friday 25th January 2019 and will close on Friday 22nd February 2019.


The existing Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy came into effect from 1 April 2015. The policy requires updating to reflect the council’s priorities and outcomes for 2019 to 2023, in particular in relation to protecting people from harm, promoting health and managing the environment. In addition, ongoing improvements in licensing practices and procedures need to be embedded within the policy to further strengthen the application process and simplify this where possible, whilst maintaining the foundations for robust enforcement to continue to increase compliance across the hackney carriage and private hire trade.

An initial consultation in respect of the proposed policy was undertaken over a ten-week period from 25 June 2018 to 2 September 2018. Responses to the initial consultation were considered.

The feedback received has been used to inform the draft of the revised policy as set out at item 5 – appendix B of the agenda of the Strategic Licensing Committee held on 23 January 2019. of this link.

On 23 January 2019 the Strategic Licensing Committee resolved that a further period of consultation on the revised policy would run for a four-week period from 25 January 2019 to 4pm on 22 February 2019.   

A copy of the full report considered by the Strategic Licensing Committee can be found item 5 of the agenda of the Strategic Licensing Committee meeting held on 23 January 2019. of this link.

Click here to download a link of the new proposals: Proposed Additional Consultation Relating to the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy

Click this link for details of how to respond to the new proposals:

When the Wilderness Called

We thank Ellie for sharing this blog with us. It is an interesting story on how nature has and is helping you overcome anxiety.

My interest in the natural world came back to me at a time in my life, when I really needed something to occupy my mind. During this period the state of my anxiety was at its lowest ebb and I did not know where I fitted in. As a result, I was regularly frustrated, upset a lot and spent large amounts of time in my bedroom. I locked the rest of the world out. Even though at this point, I was on medication and was seeking counselling, I was yearning for anything to break this cycle.

In the latter part of 2012, I was undertaking a job centre six-month employability course in Harborne, Birmingham at the QAC college. Whilst I was there I lived in supported accommodation with several others, and often felt very homesick. However, it was during this time, I began seriously asking the question, what do I want to do with my life. I met some amazing other students who knew exactly what they were planning to do with their lives. I felt envious of them and I feared that, I might end up doing a job that would give me no passion or joy.

As the winter nights began drawing in, a carpet of snow covered the large garden adjacent to the house. Each evening before I went to bed, I would regularly look out the window upon this pristine snowflake threaded ground. The landscape surrounding me echoed my seasonal state of mind, cold and isolated. My only comfort was writing, it was the only thing I knew and all I lacked was a subject that would fill this void of expression so deeply embedded within me.

One night after reading, I had quick glance at the winter palace outside and closed curtains, turn off light and huddled into bed. A few hours later, I heard what could only be described as a murderous scream, I jumped out of bed and looked out the window. I saw something but I could not make it out as it disappeared into the night, some people who I lived with were frighten but I was intrigued. This sound made the feel a rush of adrenaline and woke up a sense of excitement inside of me, which I had not felt since I was a child.

Then it happened again the following night and I rushed over to my window and threw back the curtains. It was looking directly towards me, it had a feather duster tail, and lanky legs with black socks on and rather prominent snout. The mysterious creature was Vulpes vulpes, a vixen fox calling to tell potential males, that she was ready to mate. It was fascinating witnessing the natural history of this species play out in front of my very eyes.

The fox’s call lit a flame in my soul and reignited a passion which I thought had long since gone. It was a call from wildness to rewind myself with my old child and teenage self. I felt like that 14-year-old girl again who had once been so excited to see a sett of badgers in her garden. That spring and summer of 2013 was spent going to my local woodland and learning about a whole array of invertebrates from butterflies to grasshoppers. I finally knew what my calling in life was to do, it was to work with wildlife and to share my knowledge of nature with others, through my writing.

By encountering nature, I discovered an inner personal connection with it and in return it gave me an inner peace, a focus. However, I do still have bad days with my anxiety, but they are less often than they once were and have reduced as result of going out into nature. I wanted to tell you this story not for pity but as a sign of hope in what can feel like a dark world at times, where the light seems distance. If you are going through anxiety at the moment, try to go outside even if it’s just the garden or walk with your dog to the park. I know from my own experience of anxiety, how difficult it can be to take that initial first step outside, but I can assure it will be okay. Immerse yourself in the wonder which is nature and who knows you too could experience the call of the wildness.

Dignity in Action Day , February 1st 2019

Dignity Action Day #DAD2019 is an annual opportunity for health and social care workers, and members of the public to uphold people’s rights to dignity and provide a truly memorable day for people who use care services.

What is Dignity Action Day?

Dignity Action Day aims to ensure people who use care services are treated as individuals and are given choice, control and a sense of purpose in their daily lives.

Dame Joan Bakewell, Dignity in Care Ambassador said:

“Dignity Action Day highlights a more respectful way of behaving towards vulnerable people. The very old and the very young clearly need our respect, but it wouldn’t do any harm to spread the dignity message across the population then we can all benefit.”

Supporting Dignity Action Day will:

  • Raise awareness of the importance of Dignity in Care
  • Provide someone with an extra special day
  • Demonstrate that everybody in the community has a role to play in upholding Dignity in Care
  • Remind the public that staff have a right to be treated with dignity and respect too
  • Provide a great community networking opportunity.

Have you planned anything for Friday 1st February in recognition of Dignity Action Day? If so, please complete our User Friendly form so that we can promote what you are doing. You can find the form here:

Success of Friendly Hour at Sainsbury’s Telford Forge Retail Park

For more than 12 months SDN have been alerting you to Friendly Hour taking place at Sainsbury’s at Telford Forge Retail Park, Colliers Way, Telford TF3 4AG on the first Monday of each month.

Sandra and Marg PR Ambassador at Sainsbury’s Telford Forge Retail Park introduced Friendly Hour at their store in 201. This idea has been backed by their Manager, and as a result of its success, as from Monday 4th February 2019, Friendly Hour will take place every Monday from 09.30-10.30 am.

Earlier this month SDN shared the good news that Sainsbury’s, Whitchurch store had informed us they were starting a Quiet Hour, on Tuesday 8th January 2019 10.00-11.00 am. This will take place at the same time each Tuesday. 

The idea of both Quiet Hour and Friendly Hour anyone who would appreciate a quieter, a more relaxed shopping environment, to shop to do so. While lights cannot be dimmed, there will be no tannoy announcements and no music. It will be quieter so No roll cages on shop floor to cause noise.

Shropshire Disability Network are very pleased that these local stores have decided to provide these quieter and less stressful times for people to shop. We thank Ann, Marg and Sandra, PR Ambassadors at the stores and their Managers for taking this initiative and we hope more branches will follow from their example.

Note, these opportunities are unique to both stores and do not take place across all Sainsbury’s stores.

Shropshire Great Outdoors Annual Public Survey

Start Date:
1st February 2019

End Date:
28th February 2019

Start Time:

End Time:

This is a visitors survey.

The Shropshire Outdoor Partnerships Service is the part of Shropshire Council that maintains and develops recreational access, conserves and enhances the natural environment and encourages people to improve their well-being by being active outdoors.

The service maintains and protects public rights of way, country parks, countryside and heritage sites, greenspaces and play areas, and supports the Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership.

Working with local communities across Shropshire, our priorities are to conserve and enhance the natural environment, improve people’s health and wellbeing and support the local tourism economy.

About this survey:

Shropshire’s Great Outdoors Strategy 2018-28 sets out the strategic direction for the management and development of publicly accessible green space, rights of way and other access in the unitary authority area of Shropshire, aiming to inspire action to improve health, prosperity and happiness by cherishing Shropshire’s great outdoors. The strategy fulfills the statutory requirement of a rights of way improvement plan, but broadens the remit to deliver across multiple policy areas and to integrate activity across local authority services and partner organisations.

This strategy has been developed in partnership with a range of key organisations and users and informed by data analysis and research. To help define our services we undertake an annual user satisfaction survey.

Shropshire Great Outdoors would like to hear from you, even if you don’t use rights of way, parks, play areas or countryside sites, so we can understand what the barriers to participation are.Please take the time to complete our short questionnaire which you can access by clicking on the “How to get involved tab” at the top of the page, and help us to develop and improve the service. If you take part in a number of activities that make use of facilities in different ways and for which you would give different responses, eg for walking with friends and riding, you can fill in this survey for each activity.

Resources to deliver the strategy are under increasing pressure and your responses will help us to identify key areas for priority in the future. The results will also help us to identify those less valued areas of the service which we could give a lower priority.

The survey should only take about ten minutes of your time, depending on how much detail you give when answering the questions.

To go straight to the survey, click this link:

Do you live in Weston Rhyn, St Martins and Gobowen?

Help is available to anyone living in the Weston Rhyn, St Martins and Gobowen areas of Oswestry. Three Parishes Big Local is working with Citizens Advice Shropshire on a 3 year project that will help people to manage their household finances and access benefits. 

In the first year of the project, they have helped 125 local people, mostly with benefits advice or switching utilities. The advice and support that they have received from Karen Williams through My Money Matters has helped them get over £95,000 in extra benefits between them. This is money that they were entitled to but didn’t know that they could claim. 

If you or you know someone who might benefit from the advice that Karen can provide, drop in and see her for a confidential chat at any of the support sessions that she holds: Sessions are held each:

  • Tuesdays: 10am – 1pm at St Martins Community Centre
  • Wednesdays: 10am – 1pm at Weston Rhyn Institute
  • Thursdays: 2pm – 5pm at Gobowen Central Library and Hub.   

You can contact Karen at Citizens Advice Shropshire on  07526 169305 or 01743 280019. Help can be given with:

  • Budgeting advice
  • General Money Management
  • Shopping habits and food waste
  • Benefits advice
  • Information on Credit Union savings and loans
  • Advice on switching gas and electricity suppliers
  • Advice on fuel poverty and rural food issues
  • Debt   

The programme of workshops and drops in for Jan to Mar 2019 is shown below:


Your Views are wanted re Automated Vehicles Consultation

Start Date:
1st January 2019

End Date:
8th February 2019

Start Time:

End Time:

The Law Commission are reviewing the regulatory framework for the safe deployment of automated vehicles in the UK. Our preliminary consultation is now open and closes on 8 February 2019.

Disability Rights UK will be responding to this consultation and would like to hear your views. Please email by 1 February 2019 with the word ‘automation’ in the subject box of your email.

The consultation which you can find at this link suggests that, in future, cars with automated driving systems will not have drivers but instead a “user-in-charge” who would need to be ready to take control of a vehicle in situations where automation is likely cause an accident.

The good thing about automated cars is that they have the ‘potential to offer enhanced mobility to those who are currently unable to drive, such as disabled persons’.

Key considerations in the consultation:

  • Liability for accidents/injury when a vehicle is automated – the user-in-charge would be liable in some situations, but not others
  • Changes/additions to the current driving test – including possibly separate test categories, which are currently illegal under EU law
  • Possible licence changes for specially adapted vehicles

The consultation closes on 8 February 2019. If you wish to respond without going via Disability Rights UK  Please send us your comments, preferably using the online portal at

You can also send your responses:

By email:

By post:     Automated Vehicles Team, Law Commission, 1st Floor, Tower, 52 Queen Anne’s Gate, London, SW1H 9AG.

If you have any questions, you can contact us by phone: 020 3334 0200.

Disabled Peoples’ Experience of the Criminal Justice System

Disability Rights UK, in partnership with a leading research agency working both nationally and internationally, are exploring the possibility of hosting a series of focus groups to better understand the experiences of disabled people when interacting with the criminal justice system

Disability Rights UK are looking for individuals who fit either of the following criteria:

  • Have used the justice system in the last 18 months (whether as a victim, witness, defendant, appellant or claimant) and have a physical or mental health impairment that impacted your experience.
  • Have been charged with a criminal offence (preferably since January 2017), have been through the pre-trial stage as a defendant and have a mental health condition, learning disability, acquired brain injury or a neurodiverse condition.

Please email your statement of interest to If they have enough suitable participants, further details (including dates, locations and reimbursement) will follow shortly.

Shropshire Disability Network will share further information from Disability Rights UK as it becomes available.


SaTH People’s Academy

SaTH’s People’s Academy is a great opportunity to find out how the NHS works in our area together with a chance to see what goes on behind the scenes. 

With more than 500,000 people using the services provided by SaTH, it is important that they hear your views. Would you like to know more about the NHS, and how it works in our area? The People’s  Academy may be what you’ve been looking for!

There are two types of events.

  • The Young People’s Academy which is aimed at 16-25 years old and is a one day “taster” session which gives an overview of the NHS and the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust. Sessions include a behind-the-scenes tour and a Resus demonstration, with the chance to have a go, and a talk by our catering team which includes the chance to try hospital food! 

Young People’s Academy dates are:

  • Tuesday 19 February, 09:00 – 17:00, Room B, Education Centre at the Princess Royal Hospital
  • Thursday 21 February, 09:00 – 17:00,Seminar 1, Shropshire Education Conference Centre , at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.


  • Also available is the SaTH People’s Academy, which gives you the chance to come into one of our hospitals and find out about a bit more about the NHS, The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Our Population and How People Can Influence.  The course comprises four sessions over four weeks, and people attending the Academy can choose to continue their relationship with our Trust by taking up involvement opportunities as they are sent out.
SaTH People’s Academy  next course dates are:
  • Friday 01 February, 14:00 – 17:00, Room B, Education Centre, at the Princess Royal Hospital
  • Friday 08 February, 14:00 – 17:00, Room B, Education Centre, at the Princess Royal Hospital
  • Friday 15 February,14:00 – 17:00, Room B, Education Centre, at the Princess Royal Hospital
  • Friday 22 February, 14:00 – 17:00, Room B, Education Centre, at the Princess Royal Hospital