Midcounties Cooperative – Vote for us!

We are happy to announce that we have been shortlisted by The Midcounties Cooperative for people to vote for in April this year!

We would like to invite as many of you as possible to vote for us between the 11th – 24th April for a chance for us to become a Regional Community Charity Fundraising Partner.

As soon as we have more information about this, we will update everyone on our website and social media with the details on how you can vote!

Volunteers Urgently Needed!

Are you looking for a volunteering opportunity to help build your CV? Maybe your looking to do something from the comfort of your own home or out in the community?

We are urgently looking for volunteers to join our charity, and currently have the following opportunities available:

  • Newsletter Editor
  • Secretary (Experience required)
  • Fundraising Lead
  • Fundraisers
  • Bloggers
  • Photographers (Urgently required for a new project we are working on)

If you or someone you know maybe interested in applying for any of the above volunteering roles, then please get in touch with our Volunteering Lead (Daniel Watkins) by emailing: volunteering@shropshire-disability.net.

If your an organisation that would like to advertise these opportunities, then please also get in touch with Daniel Watkins using the email above.

All our latest opportunities can also be found by clicking here.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Have you recently received disappointing news from the Department for Work and Pensions in relation to a PIP claim? Have you had some experience with a PIP review, do you have on going concerns in relation to PIP either in a professional or personal experience capacity?

If so, then we would like to hear from you about your views on Personal Independence Payment as we understand there has been a recent surge with individuals suffering from bad experiences (including the loss of a PIP claim) in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.

Please share any information you may have by completing the form below. (Please note that the deadline for submitting your information has now been extended to Friday 28th April 2023).

Shrewsbury Health and Wellbeing Hub

Shrewsbury Health and Wellbeing Hub – How You Can Have Your Say!

NHS Shropshire Telford and Wrekin are keen to offer as many opportunities as possible to hear views about the Shrewsbury Health and Wellbeing Hub.

From 16 January to 31 March 2023, a further round of engagement will take place for the proposal which will focus on groups we have so far heard less from.

These include:

  • Youth (16-24)
  • Elderly and in particular those 80+
  • Males
  • LGBT+
  • Ethnic minority groups
  • Disability groups
  • Expectant and new parents.

To support this, we will be holding online and face-to-face focus groups, as well as attending numerous community meetings across the town.

Our approach will be flexible and will work to suit what is best for those groups of people we would like to hear from. As such, we will be happy to discuss how best to hear views by attending any community group meetings or activities that are already planned.

All feedback provided will be reported on and will feed into the work of the Programme Team responsible for developing the proposal.

If you would like to get involved, please let us know and we will plan our approach around your needs. Contact Sara Buckley at stw.getinvolved@nhs.net to start the conversation or to find out more information.

Further details about the Shrewsbury Health and Wellbeing Hub can be found on the NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin website.

Review of Members Meeting February 2023

The first Members Meeting of 2023 was held of 15th February at Freemasons Hall Shrewsbury which saw a good number of members attend to hear three very interesting guest speakers. The business update of the Management Committee involved a detailed update by Webmaster Dan Watkins on how he was progressing the development of a brand-new web site for SDN which will solve many of the historic problems we are experiencing with site and will ensure we have a fresh modern site for members to easily interact with.

The Chair Russell Price outlined the progress the committee had made in recovering from the Covid Pandemic and reported the fantastic news that SDN had received a £2,000 donation from the Salopian Lodge of Charity.

The first speaker was Sara Buckley who gave an interesting talk on the proposed Health & Wellbeing Hub and the current consultation process. Sara was closely questioned by members on the implications for people with disabilities and its impact on how they could access important health care. Further details are contained in this link. https://www.shropshiretelfordandwrekin.nhs.uk/get-involved/current-work/shrewsbury-health-and-wellbeing-hub/

Sara Buckley was also asked some questions by the members the current consultation being carried out. Please see the questions and answers below:

  • Is there any representation on the Stakeholder Reference Group from those representing those with disabilities?
    • Yes, we have representation from the Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly which bring together groups including those with disabilities, and they feedback information from these meetings to their groups.


  • Can the group be involved in inputting/contributing to plans for the hub?
    • We are engaging with groups including disability groups and want to continue to engage with all groups and welcome their ongoing input.


  • What is the timeline for the consultation/hub?
    • This is not known at this time.

The second speaker was Richard Pulford who is the Disability Support and Liaison Officer at Shrewsbury Town Football Club. He detailed a long list of initiatives he was driving forward with the club to make match days more easily accessible. He also invited SDN members to join him for an exclusive open day session at the club to see first-hand what happens on match days. Further details will be posted on the SDN web site when known.

The third and final speaker was Wendy Marston, the Community Engagement Lead for the Shropshire Community Leisure Trust who manage leisure facilities across the County including the Quarry Swimming Baths and Sundorne Sports Village. Wendy outlined the existing facilities on offer that cater for a wide range of abilities and provided insights into the current uptake and users of the leisure services. This included new activities such as a Quiet Gym, Chronic Pain management groups and Social Prescribing.

In summary all three speakers gave very interesting and informative talks that were enjoyed by all present. There are certainly lots of new initiatives happening in the County for SDN Members to get involved with.

Sunday Lunch 20th March 2022-all proceeds for SDN

Salopian Lodge of Charity 117 are hosting this event to raise essential funds for our charity. You, Your family and friends are invited to a relaxing and leisurely Sunday Lunch on Sunday 20th March (12 noon for 12.30pm) at The Corbett Arms. A delicious 3 course lunch (can be chosen as listed on the attached leaflet downloadable in “Word” or as a PDF file), enjoy good company, amiable conversation, and raffle. This event is being held by Salopian Lodge Charity 117 in aid of the Shropshire Disability Network.

Dress Code: Smart Casual
Cost: £25 per person

RSVP by Thursday 10th March 2022

Download the Menu/Booking form by clicking here for a word document FlyerRussellPriceSunday Lunch2022 (1) or if you prefer to this as a PDF document please click this link FlyerRussellPriceSunday Lunch2022 (1) 

Please return your completed booking form with your chose of menu to:
Nick Wright, 7 Lexington Avenue, Shrewsbury, SY2 6SR Telephone: 01743 248 341Together with your cheque for £25 per person, made payable to: Salopian Lodge of Charity 117 or use Bank Transfer: Account  SLOC 117 No:00182906 Sort Code 30-97-62.

Children & Young People’s mental health in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin

SDN has received a press release from Shropshire Healthwatch and Telford & Wrekin Healthwatch asking that we share this information with our members.

“It has been widely reported over the recent months that the on-going Covid-19 pandemic has impacted the mental health of children and young people and this has led to a greater severity of need among many and an increased demand on services at a time when services have had to adapt to working under Government pandemic restrictions and increased staff shortages.

However, the lack of ‘Tier 4’ beds (specialist inpatient beds for the most seriously unwell) in the county means that children and young people will be admitted to either Royal Shrewsbury Hospital or Princess Royal Hospital, or The Redwoods Centre (an adult mental health hospital) while waiting to be moved to a suitable hospital outside Shropshire.

Healthwatch Shropshire and Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin were asked to give these children and young people the opportunity to share their experiences and say what could have been done to improve the help they have received.

Lynn Cawley, Chief Officer of Healthwatch Shropshire, said, “The report highlights the need for the system to reduce waiting times and provide information, support and advice for children, young people and their families and schools while waiting for assessment, diagnosis and specialist services to prevent crisis. Alongside this there needs to be close monitoring to ensure children and young people can be prioritised according to need and closer partnership working to include schools and adult services to ensure no child or young person falls into the gaps between services. We heard from families and professionals who were calling for more awareness raising and training to help them to support the children and young people who are struggling.”

Barry Parnaby, Chair of Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin, said “Barry Parnaby, Chair of Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin, said “We have been aware of the pressure many children and young people are under – issues which have been exacerbated by the pandemic. This report provides a unique opportunity to understand and act to improve services based on the knowledge and experiences of young people, as well as their friends, family members and professionals within the sector.

“A key finding within the report centres on the need for additional support for young people and their families when using the services available. Whilst the report has now been completed, we look forward to continuing to work with local providers, users and others to improve services and support people where possible.”

People can read the full report here https://www.healthwatchshropshire.co.uk/report/2022-02-09/mental-health-crisis-services-children-and-young-people-shropshire-telford-wrekin

Healthwatch is the independent health and social care champion. It gathers the views and experiences of patients, service users, carers, and the general public about services including hospitals, GPs, mental health services, community health services, pharmacists, opticians, residential care and children’s services.  It also has statutory powers that it can use to influence service provision by encouraging improvements.

Women urged to take part in health survey

The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust are asking more women to take part in a health survey. So far they have received more than 2,000 responses to the system-wide survey, but they would like to get more women from the county and mid-Wales to respond.

Through a Press Release received by the Trust, we have been asked to share the following:

“The survey is the first of its kind in the county and mid-Wales and there is still time to have your say with the survey closing on Monday 28 February.

A Women’s Health Project Group made up of Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Integrated Care System (ICS) and patient representatives across the county and mid-Wales set up the women’s health survey to try to find out the reasons why some women are not coming forward for screening and asking for help with the menopause.

Today (Monday 14 February) also sees the launch of the Help Us Help You – Cervical Screening Campaign which highlights the benefits of cervical screening and reminds people that it can help stop cancer before it starts.

The campaign, which has been launched by the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England and NHS Improvement, encourages those eligible for screening between the ages of 25 and 64 to respond to their cervical screening invitation letters and to book an appointment at their GP Practice if they missed their last one.

Two women die every day from cervical cancer in England. Yet it is one of the most preventable cancers and getting screened can help stop it before it starts. Screening checks for certain types of the HPV virus that can cause cell changes to your cervix. Cell changes are easily treated and this prevents cervical cancer.

Part of the women’s health survey looks at cancer screening services for women, as locally the number of women coming forward for breast and cervical screening services has been falling. The aim of the survey is to find out what local women know about screening, what they feel about taking part and what barriers they may face when they are invited to a screening appointment.

The second section of this survey looks at menopause as on average half of women aged 45-65 who have experienced the menopause in the past 10 years, have not consulted a healthcare professional about their menopausal symptoms. The group would like to know more about how much women living locally know about the menopause, how it affects them and their experience of healthcare and what can be done to improve this.

Dr Priya George, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group Clinical Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: “Thank you to all those women who have taken the time to complete this survey and I would encourage anyone who hasn’t had the chance yet to do so as soon as they can. This is a real chance for local women to let us know if there are any reasons they are not coming forward for cancer screening or for getting advice and support through menopause.

“We would like to find out more about your general awareness of the screening programme, and about menopause, and to understand any barriers that prevent you from being tested and getting expert advice and support when you need it. With this valuable information, we would like to further improve our women’s health services and make them more accessible to everyone.”

The link for the survey, which should take approximately 15 minutes to complete, is available here. All information provided for the survey will be anonymous.

Once the survey results are collated they will be analysed and shared with NHS providers and patient representatives to see how improvements can be made to services and encourage more women to have screening and seek help with the menopause.

For any more information on the survey or paper copies of the survey email sath.engagement@nhs.net or ring 01743 261000 ext 2390.

Also, if you would like to be involved in any future workshops around Women’s Health, please email sath.engagement@nhs.net .

For more information on cervical screening visit the NHS website www.nhs.uk/cervicalscreening

Local Health Champions wants to hear about NHS psychological services

Local Healthwatch in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin have asked that we share with you this press release. They write:

Local Health Champions want to hear about NHS psychological services

Depression and anxiety levels in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin have increased since the start of the pandemic. The Shropshire Primary Care Psychological Therapies Service (also known as IAPT) and Telford IAPT are at the forefront of support and therapy to help people to deal with mild and moderate depression and anxiety. People who want help contact the service directly themselves. The NHS is looking at how these services are organised and are keen to understand people’s experiences. Healthwatch wants to hear from people who have used the service or are waiting for therapy, what went well, what didn’t go so well and any suggestions for improvements.

Lynn Cawley, Chief Officer of Healthwatch Shropshire, said, “We want to ensure that the patient voice is at the centre of any service development and would encourage anybody who has used the service to get in touch. All experiences will be shared anonymously.”

Frances Sutherland, Head of Transformation and Commissioning (Mental health, LD & A) Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group, said, “We want to ensure these services are easily accessible and support people in the right way which is why we want to understand more about how it feels to be treated by our local services. We are really pleased that Healthwatch have agreed to undertake this work. We want to hear the views of people who have used the services now or in the past so that we can design our service to best meet their needs.”

Barry Parnaby, Chair of Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin, said “Your local Healthwatch and NHS Trust are committed to ensuring the delivery of care is as good as it can be, but to do this, we need to hear from those who have experienced the service. Please get in touch and help to make a positive change.”

People can share their experiences with either Healthwatch Shropshire or Healthwatch Telford & Wrekin through a short online questionnaire for Shropshire 

www.healthwatchshropshire.co.uk/shropshire-psychological-therapies-service  or for Telford & Wrekin www.healthwatchtelfordandwrekin.co.uk/telford-iapt-shropshire-psychological-therapies-service-iapt.

or alternatively by ringing 01743 237884 / 01952 739540

Healthwatch  is the independent health and social care champion. It gathers the views and experiences of patients, service users, carers, and the general public about services including hospitals, GPs, mental health services, community health services, pharmacists, opticians, residential care and children’s services.  It also has statutory powers that it can use to influence service provision by encouraging improvements.

SDN Members an event for you! Learn to love Moths!

Many of our members will know about “Caring for God’s Acre” Beautiful Burial Ground Project. Shropshire Disability Network have been fortunate to be included in various sessions they have hosted for our members ie “Archives Department at Shrewsbury, Small Mammals event, looking at wildlife in Longden and Bridgnorth cemeteries. We have always had a great time and learnt a lot from these sessions.

Now you are being offered another session so “Join the Beautiful Burial Ground Project and Moths expert Charlie Bell in the Churchyard of St Bart’s part of the National Trust’s Benthall Hall near Much Wenlock”.

This event will take place on Tuesday 24th August 2021 from 10 am – 12 noon to learn to love Moths!

Overnight Charlie will set a harmless moth trap and in the morning will show us what has been found before they are released. 

Be prepared to discover the world of moths is more interesting and colourful than you first expected!

This session is free to attend but places do need to be booked, please book yours by contacting  George george@cfga.org.uk or info@shropshire-disability.net

This session is planned with accessibility in mind and will have seating and BSL interpretation available. 

Please let us know if you have any specific access needs that we need to know about in advance to accommodate. Also if you need help with transport, please let us know.

We hope many of you will join this FREE event.

Click here for Information on Benthall Hall https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/benthall-hall

Image courtesy of Unsplash.