Croydon Vision News January 2018

Bill’s Final Words

When I leave at the end of January I will have been with you for 7 months. This has been a mere moment in the history of Croydon Vision but an interesting and eventful time for me.

Newcomers to Croydon Vision comment on the warm welcome they receive and this was certainly my experience, too. There is something organic about the place with members, volunteers, trustees and staff mingling freely to get things done. In my view we are already delivering an impressive and appropriate range of services to local visually impaired people. The flip-side of our informal and flexible approach, however, is that more formal systems, procedures and processes are not as well developed as they could be

It has been my responsibility to implement the staff review initiated by Jeff Page and the last few months have seen substantial change. Inevitably it has been unsettling as we say farewell to staff who have contributed so much, over many years. As one door closes, however, another opens and we have also welcomed new colleagues who have brought fresh energy and new ideas.

The new Director, Susanette Mansour, joins us on 3rd January and, on behalf of all at Croydon Vision, I welcome her and wish her every success in her new role.

During 2018 I would recommend that Croydon Vision concentrates on:

Consolidating existing services

Continue to develop and implement appropriate business systems

Fully utilising, the hall and other charity resources to generate income, thus complimenting grant funding and donations.



Mike’s Memories

I started working for the CVAB the 6th of July 1987. I was thirty years old and had no idea the influence and affect the association would have on the rest of my life.

My first boss was Anne Smith who I liked and respected immensely. I had never worked anywhere quite like here before and sadly probably never will again!

There has been so much happiness over such a long time and that is all due to the members and volunteers who inhabit the CV world. Our members join CV with what is a shared purpose to make welcome and support other visually impaired people in Croydon. I cannot say enough about CV volunteers, they give their time endlessly and selflessly time and time again asking for nothing in return, they are true heroes of the Croydon community!

My time at CVAB has passed so quickly but has left me with so many memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life.

Mike Jones

Women’s Group

The South London Women’s group will be having a break in January while we recover from all the festivities and will re-commence in February when hopefully the evenings will be less gloomy and getting about will be easier for all.

We will be aiming to continue with our “3rd Wednesday of the month” pattern; full confirmation of dates in next month’s newsletter.

Best wishes Karrie and Alex


Living with sight loss course

At the beginning of December, the RNIB ran this excellent two-day course for sixteen participants at Bedford Hall. Topics covered included the help available from RNIB, Croydon Vision, the Sensory Impairment Team and Social Services, levels of vision and the benefits of registration, rights and allowances, emotional wellbeing, and mobility with different kinds of cane and guide dogs.

It was useful to learn about RNIB Connect, a free telephone service for anyone interested in or affected by sight loss to keep in touch with others and with new developments and solutions to everyday issues.

Roy from Metro Blind Sport talked with humour and enthusiasm about leisure activities, and a hands-on technology session taught us to use smartphones, new apps and Amazon Echo’s Alexa voice service which everyone wanted to have! The course may be repeated in the New Year if there is sufficient interest – do sign up


How Generous You All Are.

As we reached the end of the year it seemed appropriate to look back on how much money you have raised. There have been many opportunities for you to give to the upkeep of the charity and you keep coming up trumps. Thank you so much, every penny counts. Through legacies and fund raising you have raised over £58,000.


Calling all Macular Group Members

There is no meeting as such in January as we are holding our annual lunch on Monday 8th January. Meeting 12.30pm onwards for lunch at 1.00pm at the Masonic Hall, 73 Oakfield Road, Croydon CRO 2UX.

If you wish to attend and have not already booked, please contact Pat Tebbutt on 020 8681 5038. Your guests will all be welcome to join us. Payment is required in advance and the cost is £21 per person which includes gratuity. There is no transport available; we shall meet at the Masonic Hall.

February onwards usual second Monday of the month at 1.00pm at Bedford Hall

Pat Tebbut


A taste of Italy

I hope to see you in the New Year for an Italian wine ‘n dine on Monday 29th January.

So far we have had a taste of Jamaica and American dinner which was a joy to do and we all enjoyed. I would like to take this time to thank one and all for the parts you have played to help raise funds for Croydon Vision.

Booking essential.                                                           Trevor Aziz


Goodbye Graham

Graham has left the charity and we would like to say thank you to him for all the extra things he did around the place.

For example each month he was the one who printed the newsletter, Sounds so easy but there are always the quirks’ and whims of the photocopier. For others like me pieces of technology seem to have a mind of their own. Graham had tamed it over many years of patience so that they had come to understand each other. He was always willing to help out keeping an eye on stock levels.

Magically things went up the stairs. I am sure that there are many other things that will need to find someone else to do them.


Katherine’s Tech

In December I got a Google home, to try and answer a question that had been asked of me, which is better Google Home or Amazon Alexa? I have been living with them for a month and I still don’t know!

I would like for you to help me decide, so on my drop in days in January I will have them both set up for you to play with.

I will set them up in the coffee area and you can try them all day. To talk to Alexa just say ‘Alexa’ to talk to the Google say ‘Ok Google’ or ‘Hey Google’

Just a little reminder if it snows we will put up on the website ASAP if we are closed for snow. We will contact everyone who is coming in, starting with those making their own way, so please try and be patient.

How much did you give?

Irene Davey has been very busy this December collecting money for various causes.

She has collected money in lieu of sending Christmas cards in aid of St Christopher’s Hospice, raising £70 to help them.

Irene took charge of collecting for Judy and the wonderful Kitchen Volunteers who keep you fed throughout the year collecting nearly £90 for them.

Finally she has been collecting a parting gift for Michael and raised £260.

Keep in touch with Croydon Vision

Volunteer Jenny Davey has reviewed and updated our telephone service for Keeping In Touch with members whom we do not see regularly at Bedford Hall (it was formerly called Care Line).

If you do not attend any activities, would you like to be telephoned by a volunteer approximately once a month, just as a friendly voice to see how you are managing and if you require any assistance with any problems?

The scheme is also open for relatives or carers. If you would like to join Keeping in Touch, please contact the office and ask to be added to the register.


A Magical Time for Croydon Vision’s Children’s project

Our Children’s project saw 2017 out with a very special Christmas party in Bedford Hall which had been transformed into a winter wonderland. Lizzie had created some wonderful Xmas decorations and we created a wintry Santa’s grotto. Our Christmas tree looked very festive too alongside the gingerbread house that Lizzie made for us.

We had our very own visually impaired magician come along to deliver a very interactive magic show which the children really enjoyed.

The ringing of sleigh bells and clip clop of hooves meant that Father Christmas had arrived and bought presents along for the children. Father Christmas spoke to each child and he even brought a little elf with him to give the presents out. We gave Santa a mince pie to send him on his way and then had great fun playing pass the parcel.

The party was a lovely way to celebrate the first year of the project which has simply flown by; when I totalled it up we have run 16 activities which is amazing. I am very grateful for the support of my fantastic support worker, for all of the volunteers who have helped and the families that have supported the project during its first year.

It’s time for me and Judy to bid you all a fond farewell, as we are moving to Wiltshire in January to escape to the country. It’s been a great privilege to set the Children’s project up and I hope that goes from strength to strength.

With best wishes

Alan and Judy Dog

News from the News 3

I returned to London and found lodgings with my future in laws. They had three sons all serving in the army. Their eldest son came home on leave and that was it. In 1947 he came home from Burma and in June of the following year, 1948 I went home to Twickenham to get married. We were not sure that the vicar was not drunk as he slurred through the service, of course it could have been nerves. We started our married life with the in laws who split their house in half. They retained the top flat.

My husband James was a trainee engineer. I got work with the Co-operative Insurance but gave up work when our first daughter was born, eleven months later. Eighteen months later our second daughter was born on Christmas Day, it was hard work. We were still living with the in laws. Mother in law was very helpful and delighted that they were girls. When they went to school, so did I as a school cook very helpful with child care. Once the girls had grown up I got a “proper” job in the chief engineer’s office at 55 Broadway, London Transport. I dealt with invoices, bills and later on wages. After ten years I retired at 59. When James retired we had ten years together and three months after his death my girls encouraged me to move to Hamsey Green as they both lived there. I am very comfortable in my home and have some good neighbours.

New music listening group

Bob Horne has put forward an idea for a new group to listen to and discuss recorded music which he or group members would select. He suggests meeting on a Monday for one to two hours. If you are interested, please contact Bob or Rachel.


Alfred & Salamanda

In the afternoon of Tuesday the 19th December we had the privilege of listening to the Alfred and Salamanda Saxophone Quartet. The group consisted of 2 married couples who played the Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Baritone Saxophones. We heard how each instrument sounded by each member of the group playing a few bars on his/her saxophone. We all enjoyed the harmony of the four instruments as they played various pieces some of which included Christmas songs like “Winter Wonderland”, “Jingle Bells”, “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” and a host of other Christmas songs ‘to make the season bright’.

With the help of Sue and the Saxophone Quartet we sang several Christmas Carols such as “O Come all ye Faithful”, “We Three Kings of Orient are”, “The Holly and the Ivy” and “In the Bleak Midwinter”. Percussion instruments were then given to some of us to keep the rhythm flowing as they played “The Sleigh Ride”. The Quartet concluded this wonderful afternoon by all of us joining them in singing “We Wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year”. We look forward to hearing them again and wish them all the best in their endeavours.

Evelyn Wilson

Memorandum of understanding

If you did not receive the signed Memorandum of Understanding between Croydon Vision and the Thomas Pocklington Trust with the December Newsletter, please ask Stephanie at Reception for a copy.


Quiz Time

To ease your brain into the New Year, here is a Dates Quiz with options.

  1. Who made the 1st New Year’s Resolutions? The Babylonians, The Tudors, The Victorians
  2. When was the first Bank Holiday on New Year’s Day? 1964, 1974, 1984
  3. When were Dog licences revoked? 1978, 1982, 1984
  4. In which decade did the Queen become the oldest reigning British monarch? 1990s, 2000s, 2010s
  5. When was the first speeding offence? 1894, 1896, 1902
  6. In which year was the first fatal car accident? 1896, 1898, 1901
  7. When was the first escalator fitted in the UK? 1998, 1902, 1910
  8. The first crossword appeared in a Newspaper in which Year? 1905, 1913, 1918
  9. In which year did Thomas Jefferson receive his giant cheese from Cheshire? 1801, 1803, 1806
  10. When did the first modern tram run in Croydon? 1999, 2000, 2001
  11. When did the Crystal Palace move to Crystal Palace? 1850, 1854, 1860
  12. When did the Crystal Palace burn down? 1926, 1936, 1940
  13. In which year did England and Scotland become one country? 1700, 1704, 1707
  14. When was the bicycle invented? 1817, 1820, 1825
  15. When did Concord first fly? 1962, 1969, 1972



Just For Fun

Think how many memorable events have happened in your lifetime? These can either be personal or headline grabbing events.




1 The Babylonians some 4000 years ago

2 1974. It was also the year the Scotland gained Boxing Day as a Bank Holiday

3 1987, before this only about 50% had licences. The final rate was for 37p down from 37 ½ p because of the withdrawal of the Half penny

4 2000s. The Queen became the oldest English Monarch in 2005, reaching the same age as Queen Victoria when she died.

5 1896, the car was travelling a heady 8mph in a 2mph zone, he was caught by a Policeman on a bicycle

6 1896, on the 17th August at Crystal Palace

7 1898, November 16th in Harrods smelling salts and Brandy were at the top

8 1913, December 21st (a Sunday Newspaper) in New York World

9 1802, The Cheshire mammoth Cheese, weighing more than half a ton, it took 3 weeks to get to Washington by sleigh

10 1999, in the early hours of 16th June, the official opening was on 10th May 2000

11 1854 Joseph Paxton’s flat pack building was taken down from the Great Exhibition and moved to Sydenham Hill.

12 1936, and was visible from Sutton.

13 1707, King James the sixth of Scotland became James 1st of England.

14 1817, in Germany.

15 1969, from Toulouse and only felw for 27 minutes.


That’s Entertainment


A selection of Audio Described performances in London next month.

Belleville – Sat 3rd Feb 2:30pm (Touch Tour 1pm)

Donmar Warehouse, Earlham Street

T: 020 3283 3808    E:       £20

The Brothers Size – Tue 6th Feb 7:30pm (Touch Tour 6pm)

Young Vic Theatre, Waterloo

T: 020 7922 2922    E:     £10 – £38

The Divide Part 1 – Wed 7th Feb 1:30pm (Touch Tour 12pm)

The Old Vic Theatre, The Cut (Waterloo)

T: 0844 871 7628    E:                £21

The Divide Part 2 – Wed 7th Feb 7:30pm

The Old Vic Theatre, The Cut (Waterloo)

T: 0844 871 7628    E:                £21

Everybody’s Talking about Jamie – Tue 20th Feb 7:30pm (Touch Tour 6pm)

Apollo Theatre, Shaftsbury Ave

T: 0303 333 4809    E:              £32.50


Telephone numbers for local theatres

New Wimbledon theatre 0844 871 7646

Bromley Theatre      0203 285 6000



  • ­     Fiona Hazell, optometrist with Low Vision Clinic, will be at Bedford Hall on these dates this month, Thursday 11th January, and on Thursday 25th January, each between 9.30am and 12.30pm. She gives expert advice. This is a free consultation, but please book first.
  • ­     If you need the services of Croydon Hearing, you can always contact them at 020 8686 0049.
  • ­     Joseph the hairdresser is next due to be at Bedford Hall, on Thursday 18th January, from 10am. Please book first.
  • ­     The chiropodist Joy Dell will be here on Wednesday 10th January. Please book with Reception.
  • ­     The IT Coordinator Katherine Turner has two drop-in sessions to help with any IT problems you may have. They are on Tuesday 16th January, and Wednesday 17th January, between 1.30pm – 2pm. Her regular Teaching sessions are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
  • ­     The next meeting of Croydon Macular Support Group is on Monday, 8th January from 1- 3pm.
  • ­     The Glaucoma Group will meet here next on Monday 5th February, at 1.30pm
  • ­     Karrie Ashfield, Information, Advice and Guidance, is in on every Tuesday and alternate Wednesdays and Thursdays, please book through reception.


We were sad to hear of the death of Javari Hagiwan.


Menus for January

Wed 3rd         Café Style Lunch


Thurs 4th       Fish and Chips



Tues 9th        Roast Beef Yorkshire pudding Roast Potatoes Carrots Cauliflower

                      Fruit Flan & Cream

Wed 10th       Café Style Lunch


Thurs 11th     Meatloaf Mash Broccoli Carrots

Pears & Instant Whip


Tues 16th      Italian Chicken Potatoes Green Beans Carrots Cheesecake & Cream

Wed 17th       Café Style Lunch

Fruit Jelly & Instant Whip

Thurs 18th     Roast Lamb Mint Sauce Roast Potatoes Mixed Veg

Mandarins & Cream


Tues 23rd      Gammon Roast Potatoes Green Beans Peas

Cheesecake & Cream

Wed 24th       Café Style Lunch

                      Plums & Custard

Thurs 25th     Meatballs in Tomato Sauce Mash Peas & Carrots

Fruit Cocktail & Ice Cream


New Addington menus

Thurs 7th       Sausages Mashed Potato Green Beans Carrots      Apple Sauce


Thurs 14th     Steak Pie Mixed Veg Broad Beans Mashed Potato

Cheesecake and Cream

Thurs 21st     Roast Chicken Stuffing Carrots Cabbage Roast Potatoes

Ginger Sponge and Custard

Thurs 28th     Shepherd’s Pie Carrots Cauliflower

Apple Pie and Ice Cream

Happy New Year

We would love to have your input!

Submissions for the February Newsletter are due in by Thursday the 18th of January.