MS newsletter Jan-Feb 2015 1 - Oxfordshire MS Therapy Centre

Oxford and district
January/February 2015
Registered Charity Nos 1139257/SC041990
Registered as a limited company in England
and Wales 07451571
Dear Friends
The MS Society plans to embark
on its most ambitious fundraising
appeal in its 60-year history.
It aims to raise £100m in 10
years, tapping new sources of
income to boost its investment in
MS research.
The society has already
appointed an appeal board,
comprising six highly influential
and successful business leaders
and philanthropists, all with a
personal connection with MS.
They are Sir Vernon Ellis,
chairman of the British Council;
Sir David Walker, chairman of
Barclays Bank; Sir Peter
Middleton, chairman of Burford
Capital; Nicholas Maclean,
founder director of the Eykyn
Maclean gallery; Josh
Kricherfski, chief operating officer
of MediaComUK; and Kate HelyHutchinson, founder member of
the appeal steering group.
The hope is that they will be able
to attract new donors and bring
closer the day when scientists
discover the secrets of MS. The
board has already held its first
meeting and plans to launch the
appeal publicly in 2017.
Meanwhile, the MS Society is
working with similar charities in
the United States, Canada, Italy
and Australia to form the
Progressive MS Alliance. The
idea is to enable scientists to
share knowledge and expertise
and avoid duplicating work. It is
hoped this will speed up
The winners of the 100 Club
draw in December were James
Spence (£28), Dorothy Warner
(£18) and Michael Warner (£9).
There are plenty of vacancies to
join the club and win a prize for
yourself and help the branch at
the same time. Call organiser
Brenda Franklin on 01993
842076 or see her at one of our
The Venturer, the popular
narrowboat, on which our
members have enjoyed outings
in recent years, is being
withdrawn from service.
The specially-adapted vessel has
been used by numerous groups,
many supporting the elderly and
disabled, for days out on the
Oxford Canal and River Thames
around Oxford since being
launched by Prince Charles in
1988. Now, after 26 years, the
Oxfordshire Narrowboat
Charitable Trust says it can no
longer afford to run her.
The boat, built by apprentices on
a youth training scheme at
Birkenhead, was initially owned
by BBC Radio Oxford. The trust
took over about 20 years ago.
Trust spokesman Mike Stanley
said: “When we took over, it was
failing – it was losing money
hand over fist. Because we are a
charity, we can’t use it as a
money-making scheme and it’s
an expensive thing to run. It’s
been heavily subsidised over the
last few years.
“It’s sad but we have had to let it
go. There are a number of
reasons which all added up –
things have got harder financially
and over the years, it became
really hard work.”
The trust had hoped someone
would come forward to help
continue the service, but there
have been no offers. The boat is
now likely to be sold and the
money given to the charities and
other groups that have supported
it in the past.
Many of our trips were financed
by generous grants from BMW, a
legacy from the days when Jeff
Samways, our former chairman
and fundraiser, worked for the
company. Pictures of two of our
‘voyages’ appear later in the
Sue Hannaford, our main
regional contact in the MS
Society, is leaving after nine
The MS Society is reorganising
its structure and streamlining its
workforce and Sue has decided
to opt for voluntary redundancy
rather than apply for the new
Local Network Officer role.
She writes: “It’s been a fantastic
nine years. What has made the
job most enjoyable has been
working alongside our passionate
and committed volunteers. Long
may they continue.”
Our thanks to Sue for the support
she has given us. We wish her
well for the future.
Our catering staff pulled out all
the stops to make it a memorable
Christmas party at our December
Open Day. The day started with
an hour-long entertaining sing-along with our favourite duo, Ian
and Diane Woods. Members
enjoyed not only the organ music
and singing – led by our
secretary, Jo Hawtin, there was
wheelchair dancing too!
Afterwards, we all made our way
into the main hall for a
sumptuous three-course
Christmas meal, prepared and
served by Sylvie Lambertstock,
Elaine Smith and Jo Hawtin.
There was also carol singing and
a raffle to add to the festive spirit.
Our thanks to Sylvie, Elaine and
Jo for making it such a special
occasion, much enjoyed by all
who came.
As usual, there was no Open
Day in January. We begin our
2015 programme on Friday, 6th
February with a visit from Dr
Malcolm Graham, the well-known
Oxford historian, who will talk
about what happened in Oxford
during the First World War.
A talk on this subject was
requested by members and has
added significance at this time, of
course, because it is 100 years
since the war started.
The Open Day on Friday, 6th
March will include our annual
meeting, your chance to elect the
members you want to serve as
your officers for the next year. A
form is included with this
newsletter for you to nominate
and second anyone for any of the
committee posts. If you nominate
someone, please make sure they
are willing to stand.
After the annual meeting, Claire
Brokenshire, healthwise
instructor at Abingdon leisure
centre, will give a brief talk on
how to exercise and keep fit with
MS. There will be no Open Day
in April as the first Friday of the
month is Good Friday.
The Friends of the Oxford Centre
for Enablement, which some
branch members attend, had two
very successful Christmas
A Christmas party at the centre,
on the Nuffield Orthpaedic
Centre site at Headington, was
well attended. It included a quiz,
tombola, raffle, carol singing with
a band and a visit from Father
Christmas. The following week,
the band turned out at the
Westgate Centre to play more
carols and volunteers collected
£258.49 from shoppers and other
attempting the feat in October
and hopes to raise a similar sum.
The MS Society has announced
funding for 15 new research
projects from a total of 60
applications it received. They
cover a range of topics, including
cause, cure, symptom relief and
MS services, amounting to
£1,450,696. Latest figures show
that since 1956, the MS Society
has spent almost £150m (at
today’s prices) on research.
Our branch has received a
cheque for £419.50 from
donations at the funeral of
Douglas Bradley who, as we
recalled in the last newsletter,
was always the smartest man in
his jacket and tie at our Open
Days. Our thanks to his widow
Hilary and their family for their
generous support to the branch.
The MS Society was
unsuccessful in its bid to be
allowed to collect donations
outside Tesco stores in the early
part of 2015. We hope to have
better luck when the second raft
of collections later in the year is
allocated to charities.
Your membership subscription to
the MS Society was due on 1st
January. Our thanks to those
members who have renewed
promptly. If you have not yet
done so, please do so
immediately to make sure you
receive all the society literature,
plus our newsletter. It costs just
£5 a year but, of course, you can
always add an extra donation if
you wish.
Simon Laurens, a 2008
Paralympic gold and silver medal
winner, and friends climbed
Mount Kilimanjaro in the summer
and raised £40,000 for the MS
Society. Another group will be
The MS Society received more
than 200 nominations for its
annual awards. The Volunteer of
the Year was Ursula Moss, from
the Allerdale branch in Cumbria.
Let us know if you hear of
anyone ill or in hospital. Call
0779 237 7178 for all welfare
matters. Send correspondence to
John Chipperfield at 3 Lambs
Close, Kidlington, Oxon OX5
2YD. For the MS nurses, call
01865 234461 or email
[email protected] Call
01865 231869 for information
about ongoing and new MS trials.
To contribute to the newsletter,
call John Chipperfield on 01865
374877, write to 3 Lambs Close,
Kidlington, Oxon OX5 2YD or
send an email to
[email protected]
All views expressed in this
newsletter are individual and
not necessarily the view or
policy of the charity or its
Friday February 6: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Speaker:
Malcolm Graham, Oxford in the First World War. 10am-4pm.
Friday March 6: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Annual
meeting. Speaker: Claire Brokenshire, healthwise instructor on keeping
fit with MS. 10am-4pm.
No Open Day in April (Good Friday)
Friday May 1: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Speaker to be
confirmed. 10am-4pm.
Friday June 5: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Brenda
Franklin leads a craft workshop. 10am-4pm.
Friday July 3: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Wheatley Birds
of Prey return. 10am-4pm.
Friday August 7: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Speaker to
be confirmed. 10am-4pm.
Friday, September 4: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon.
Speaker: Malcolm Nelson, My life as a customs officer (Part 2). 10am4pm.
Friday October 2: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Speaker:
John Winn on his hobby of steamboats. 10am-4pm.
Friday November 6: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon. Brenda
Franklin leads a Christmas craft workshop. 10am-4pm.
Friday December 4: Open Day, Northcourt Centre, Abingdon.
Christmas music from Ian and Diane Woods. 10am-4pm.
Call Alan Cusden on 01865 723420 or Geoff Cowan on 07930
542692 if you wish to help with fundraising or collections.
Don’t forget to look at our website at
The Annual General Meeting of the Oxford & District Branch of the MS
Society will be held on Friday, 6th March 2015 at 10.30am at Northcourt
Centre, Northcourt Road, Abingdon.
Only those who have paid their annual subscription by the beginning of the
AGM can vote and stand for office. Members are invited to put names forward
for any of the following roles:
Support Officer
Fundraising Officers
Open Day Coordinator
Transport Officer
Newsletter Editor
Membership Secretary
Information Officer
Nominations should be seconded and must reach our secretary, Jo Hawtin, at
11a Vicarage Road, Kidlington, Oxon OX5 2EL by 11th February. If you are
unable to attend the AGM, you may nominate a branch member to be your
Committee Nomination Form
Name of nominee..............................................................................................
Telephone number of nominee.........................................................................
Position on committee......................................................................................
Proposed by.................................................Signed..........................................
Seconded by................................................Signed...........................................
Oxford and District Branch Officers – 2014-5
President: Prof Derick Wade
Chairman/Newsletter Editor: John Chipperfield 01865 374877
[email protected]
Secretary/Minutes Secretary: Jo Hawtin 01865 373907
[email protected]
Treasurer: Brian Hawtin 01865 373907
[email protected]
MS Support Officer: Paula Mallaghan 01865 378519
[email protected]
Open Day Officer: Vacant
Membership Secretary: Stevan Heads 01235 532184
[email protected]
Transport Officer: Liz Smith 01865 368774
[email protected]!
Fundraising Officers:
Alan Cusden 01865 723420
[email protected]
Geoffrey Cowan 07930 542692
[email protected]
Committee member: Dorothy Warner 01235 554448
[email protected]
Information Officer: