Croydon Vision News May 2018

Big Lottery

Dear Members,

The recent news from BIG lottery (Reaching Communities) was a triumph; we have been granted a 3year budget to undertake the project “Seeing the Bigger Picture.” This project is focused on developing a resource room, formalising volunteering services and creating sight loss champion/ambassador programme in the community.

A big thank you to everyone, your support, help and contribution made this possible.

This fund will bring in new opportunities’, to maintain service provision as well as reach out to support more people with sight loss.

Furthermore, it will enable us to improve our organisational strengths, creating a more robust, efficient and sustainable way of working – thereby ensuring Croydon Vision continues for many more years to come.

I am truly grateful for the partnership support from Pocklington Trust, Visionary, Croydon Council, Board of Trustees, Staffs and Volunteers who helped in various ways to make this a success.

It is now time to roll up our sleeves and start implementing the proposed plan such as:

  • Getting a new hearing loop and audio system for the hall
  • Recruitment of project officers to undertake service delivery
  • Create a resource centre fit for Croydon Vision members and residents of Croydon.

There is much to do; however, I am confident that with your support, staff and volunteers we can create a worthwhile project, making Croydon Vision proud.


FREE Ballroom & Latin Dance Programme in Westminster


London Vision and Step Change Studios are launching a free 30 week dance course for blind and visually-impaired people, funded by Sport England and the National Lottery.

Learn to dance ballroom and Latin in a fun, supportive environment and develop your potential. There will be opportunities to perform or to just dance for your pleasure. Come on your own or with a partner. This is a unique opportunity with limited places. To get the most from the programme we ask for your full commitment.

When: Launching Friday 25th May.
Time: 11:00am to midday.
Venue: Greenhouse Centre, 35 Cosway Street, London NW1 5NS.

Places must be registered in advance. To register:
Telephone: 07976 363861


We have space in our Monday morning Pottery Class. Pottery is a fantastic medium to work with if you have a visual impairment because it is a tactile one.

You can work on almost any project you can think of from plates, bowls and vases to free standing statues.

We have a Kiln so all items are fired and glazed on site.

If you would like to know more please give reception a ring.

Accessible Cities

Last month we mentioned about Bluetooth Beacons in Australia helping visually impaired people navigate the station independently.

This month we are taking a look a little closer to home at Chester. Chester is renowned for its two mile circuit of Roman, Saxon and Medieval walls and its elevated walkways called the Rows. As you can imagine this is not the most friendly area for anyone in a wheelchair.

In 2017 Chester took a bold move, the Rows have been made accessible with ramps, a lift and an escalator, so now anyone can make their way onto the elevated walkways. There is also a gentle hill slope up to the walls. Thought has also been given to Visually Impaired visitors with tactile handrails.

Chester is in the process of a 15 year regeneration strategy which is prioritising accessibility in new developments.

There is a new leisure development that will have accessible stores, restaurants, housing and even a hotel with eight accessible rooms with ceiling hoists.

The year old cultural centre has seven accessible toilets, flexible seating for groups of disabled theatre goers, audio description and hearing loops. The accessibility doesn’t stop front of house though, backstage there is an accessible toilet, changing rooms and lift.

Chester Zoo has multisensory experiences for visitors with visual impairments, along with the zoo being fully accessible for those in a wheelchair, and free access for personal assistants and disabled parking.

Chester is showing us that despite being a historic city with all the challenges that entails there is no reason not to strive for accessibility, and in 2017 Chester was named as the most accessible city in Europe.

Lucy and her Guide Dog Olivia

(From Guide Dogs Website )

Lucy only lost her sight four years ago. At 17, Lucy had her whole life planned out, when she was old enough she wanted to do a medical degree at university. Sadly she spent the next three years of her life in and out of hospital undergoing various medical procedures. She still has some usable vision but Olivia has greatly improved Lucy’s mobility.

Olivia is Lucy’s first guide dog. “We only fully qualified last week, the training was brilliant, and I really enjoyed the basic route walks,” Lucy explained. “I used to get a bit scared when I went into town, I don’t like drawing attention to myself and that’s hard because when you have a long cane you end up hitting bins and lamp posts and people stare at you. With Olivia no one can hear me coming; now I feel like a ninja!” Lucy laughed. “Olivia and I will be going to university which was always my dream. My field of study has changed slightly, to Psychology. I want to help people with sight loss, other people in the visual impaired community and people who suffer with depression,” Lucy told us.

Even though Lucy and Olivia have only been together for a short time they have still been out and about to many places! Lucy explained, “we have used lots of different transport from trains and buses to taxis and cars. I have been to a restaurant, a café and the local supermarket with Olivia already.” It sounds like there’s no stopping these two!

We asked Lucy to describe Olivia’s personality and the bond they share, “she is very cheeky, very affectionate and loves her food. She is everything to me; I couldn’t be without her.”

It is great to see our lovely Olivia reach this stage in her life changing journey. She is now helping Lucy maintain the independence to live her life to the fullest.

Works for me Employment Support Service

South West London Vision (SWELVIS) are working with us, Merton Vision, Sutton Vision and Wandsworth Vision to provide an employment service for people with a Visual Impairment.

Here at London Vision we understand the issues that blind and partially sighted people can face with getting and retaining work.

Supported by Thomas Pocklington Trust, the Works for Me programme provides expert employment advice. We can help getting work or retaining your existing job.

Works for Me is open to all visually impaired people who live, work or study in London between the ages of 18 – 65.

Interested? Please contact: Amardeep Tokhi

07773 584028

Or your local participating charity


Some of the Services available are:

  • One to one advice from our employment expert. Available by phone/email/face to face.
  • Groups led by people sharing their experiences of working with sight loss.
  • Putting you in contact with other experts that can help. IT trainers, counsellors and self-employment advisors.
  • Our networking events put you in touch with other blind and partially sighted people who are in work or looking for work.

Buzz Buzz, there’s a gap!

The Buzzclip is a smallish device that buzzes when you are near an object, you can set the sensitivity to 1m, 2m or 3m. The closer an object is to you the more firm the vibrations are.

The 1m sensitivity is perfect for indoors and the 2m and 3m for outside, the area it covers is conical so therefore it will alert you to things that could hit you in the head. As it only vibrates you don’t know where the object is, but you do know there is something there.

When you switch the device on it lets you know the battery level, the more times it vibrates, the more battery it has. The battery should last for about a days worth of use.

The buzzclip can be clipped on to clothing, held in the hand or worn round the neck on the lanyard that comes with it, its £199 from Sight and Sound. If you want to give it a go just give Sight and Sound a ring on 01604 798070 to arrange a demonstration.

Puzzling fun

The classic Rubik’s Cube is now available as a fully tactile game. Rubik’s Touch Cube has been developed to allow people who are visually impaired to play one of the world’s best-selling toys.

The cube has tactile, brightly coloured sides so now everyone can join in with the frustration of having just that one you can’t get to the correct place!

The cube is slightly larger than a standard Rubik’s cube, with each colour having its own tactile pattern, the ‘cubelets’ are moulded plastic so there is no cheating by removing the stickers and replacing them where they should be.

The Rubik’s cube is £11.95 from the RNIB shop.

Italian Dinin’

Thank you all for another successful event it was a pleasure cooking for you all I had a chance to see some old faces & lots of new ones to which is always good to see and many thanks for the speech lead by Roy and the round of applause from you all it was much appreciated I can’t wait to see you all again for the next one please remember it’s open to everyone leave your problems at the door and come to enjoy some fine dining with music

Special thanks from your Trustee MR T.AZIZ

The next event is mixing it up BBQ Style on Monday 28th May

Please note we can only offer transport home and only a limited number of slots for this. It will be allocated on a first come first served basis, and will be based on your drop off location, so please mention it when you book your ticket.

Photographing the Games

Visually Impaired photographer Andrew Fellows has been making waves photographing the swimmers at the Commonwealth Games.

Accompanied by his Guide dog he has been snapping away throughout the games to in his words “capture some really magic moments”

Andrew has Retinitis Pigmentosa leaving him with no vision in his left eye and tunnel vision of about 3m in his right. Over the years he has come up with techniques for taking photos that work really well for swimming: Focussing his camera on the splashing and taking more shots as the volume of the crowd gets louder.

He never knows what he has got until he gets them on a computer!

Quiz Time

It’s a puzzling one this month! Let’s see how much you know about sleuths of page and screen

  1. Which actor appeared in a Poirot film and later starred as Poirot?
  2. Which expression did Poirot use to describe his brain?
  3. Where did Poirot come from?
  4. Where did Miss Marple Live?
  5. An actress appeared in a Miss Marple and then went on to play Miss Marple, who was it?
  6. Who did Agatha Christie want to play Miss Marple?
  7. Which fictional detective was brought back from the dead due to popular demand?
  8. Who was Sherlock’s Brother?
  9. What Instrument did Sherlock play?
  10. Who played Miss Marple and then went on to have a series of her own as a sleuth?
  11. Which actor played Poirot and Charlie Chan?
  12. Which doctor solves murders and can be seen on skates?
  13. Which Dr returned to his father’s Practice and helps the Australian police solve crimes?
  14. Who played Mrs Bradley?
  15. Which sleuth lives in a windmill?



1 David Suchet 2 Little Grey Cells 3 Belgium 4 St Mary Mead 5 Joan Hickson 6 Also Joan Hickson 7 Sherlock Holmes 8 Mycroft 9 Violin 10 Angela Lansbury 11 Peter Ustinov 12 Dr Mark Sloan 13 Dr Blake 14 Diana Rigg 15 Jonathan Creek


That’s Entertainment


A selection of Audio Described performances in London next month.

Building the Wall – Fri 1st June 7:30pm (Touch Tour 6pm)

Park Theatre, Clifton Terrace

T: 020 7870 6876    E:              £25 – £29.50

Leave Taking – Sat 9th June 2:30pm (Touch Tour 1:30pm)

Bush Theatre, Uxbridge Road, Shepherds Bush

T: 020 8743 5050    E:                £10-£20

Matilda the Musical – Sat 30th June 2:30pm (Touch Tour 12:30pm)

Cambridge Theatre, Earlham Street

T: 0844 412 4648    E:     £33.75 – £37.25

Two Noble Kinsmen – Sat 16th June 7:30pm (Touch Tour 5:30pm)

Shakespeare’s Globe, New Globe Walk

T: 020 7401 9919 E: £5 – £ 47

Mood Music – Mon 18th June 7:30pm (Touch Tour 6pm)

The Old Vic Theatre, The Cut (Waterloo)

T: 0844 871 7628    E:        £6.00

Peter Pan – Sat 9th June 2:15pm (Touch Tour 12:30pm)

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

T: 0844 826 4242    E:           £25


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, Thursday 10th  May, and on Thursday 14th June, 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 3rd May, from 10am. Please book first.
  • ­     The chiropodist Joy Dell will here on Wednesday 9th May. 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 22nd May, and Wednesday 23rd May, between               1.30pm – 2pm. Her regular Teaching sessions are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
  • ­     The next meeting of Croydon Macular Support Group is on Monday, 14th May from 1- 3pm.
  • ­     The Glaucoma Group will meet here next on Monday 4th June, at 1.30pm
  • ­     Karrie Ashfield, Information, Advice and Guidance, is in on every Tuesday and Wednesday, please book through reception.


We were sad to hear of the death of Mr George Hudd and Mrs Rosemary Smith.

Menus for May

Tues 1st         Roast Pork, Stuffing, Roast Potatoes, Cabbage, Peas

Cheesecake & Cream

Wed 2nd        Café Style Lunch


Thurs 3rd       Turkey Steaks, New Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables

Peaches & Instant Whip


Tues 8th        Chicken Pie, Mashed Potato, Broccoli, Carrots


Wed 9th         Café Style Lunch

Pears & Cream

Thurs 10th     Battered Fish, Mashed Potato, Peas, Carrots

Cheesecake & Cream


Tues 15th      Chicken Steaks, New Potatoes, Broccoli

Meringue Nests & Fruit

Wed 16th       Café Style Lunch

Peaches & Ice Cream

Thurs 17th     Sausages, Onions, Mushrooms, Mash, Peas



Tues 22nd      Boiled Bacon, New Potatoes, Mixed Veg

Pears & Dream Topping

Wed 23rd       Café Style Lunch

Cheesecake & Cream

Thurs 24th     Roast Chicken, Stuffing, Roast Potatoes, Green Beans

Lemon Meringue Pie

Tues 29th      Roast Beef, Yorkshire Pudding, Cabbage, Carrots

Fruit Cocktail & Ice Cream

Wed 30th       Café Style Lunch


Thurs 31st     Meatballs, Mashed Potato, Mixed Veg

Rice Pudding & Jam

New Addington menus

Thurs 3rd       Turkey Steaks, New Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables

Peaches & Instant Whip

Thurs 10th     Battered Fish, Mashed Potato, Peas, Carrots

Cheesecake & Cream

Thurs 17th     Sausages, Onions, Mushrooms, Mash, Peas


Thurs 24th     Roast Chicken, Stuffing, Roast Potatoes, Green Beans

Lemon Meringue Pie

Thurs 31st     Meatballs, Mashed Potato, Mixed Veg

Rice Pudding & Jam

We would love to have your input!

Submissions for the June’s Newsletter are due in by Thursday 10th May.