Feed the Birds project enters a new phase.

A project to tackle loneliness pioneered by Shropshire Wildlife Trust is entering a new phase, thanks to funding from the National Lottery Community Fund. Feed the Birds project involves training volunteers to visit people who are experiencing social isolation, to install and refill bird food containers and chat about garden wildlife. 

Following a successful pilot project from 2016 to 2018 when Shropshire Wildlife Trust trained and matched 12 volunteers with clients who were referred via Community and Care co-ordinators based in GP practices across, recent lottery funding enables them to move on to phase 2. Clients are assessed as being lonely or socially isolated and as a result their health is deteriorating. 

Thanks to National Lottery players, Feed the Birds will reach a further 100 beneficiaries, matching them with 100 volunteers who, following training, will visit once a week. Training and registering of volunteers is done at a one day event and all volunteers are DBS checked and require two references. Once trained, Shropshire Wildlife Trust look for a suitable match with a client who lives within easy walking , cycling or bus journey. Volunteers visit once a week to top up the feeder which is provided by the project, and to check in with the client and chat to them about what they have seen and how they are feeling generally.

Clients can be referred by any organisation or agency. Once a referral is received, the Feed the Birds project officer will arrange to visit the prospective client to go through a short assessment to see that they meet the criteria. Criteria is based on the Office of National Statistics (ONS) measure of loneliness and takes the form of a short questionnaire. If a client meets the criteria, Shropshire Wildlife Trust will find a volunteer to match with them. It can take a while depending on geographical location.

Volunteers undergo quarterly supervision sessions in Shrewsbury.  This is important to enable support and a safe and confidential space to share experiences and to deal with any problems. The project officer is available at other times.

The Trust is looking for volunteers who would like to be part of the project and is also taking referrals from organisations that come across people who are lonely or socially isolated.

Diane Monether said “This is a great opportunity for anyone who is a bird lover and wants to share their passion for feeding the birds with others. We will also be taking Feed the Birds into Morris Care homes and working with Royal Shrewsbury Hospital with the aim of bringing people closer to nature through watching birds”.

Anyone interested in finding out more should contact Diane Monether (01743 284271) or email [email protected] For details of our next training session click here.

Sunflower Lanyard

Sunflower Lanyards come to Telford

Sunflower Lanyards scheme will be available at Sainsbury’s Telford Forge Retail Park this August. So what is this scheme about? It is a scheme to enhance the shopping experience of people with hidden disabilities. The initiative will offer shoppers the option to pick up a lanyard, which has been purposely designed to act as a discreet sign for store colleagues to recognise they may need to provide a customer with additional support when in store. 

Staff will be happy to provide extra support such as opening a new checkout lane, assisting with finding shopping items or simply giving them more time at the checkout. Lanyards will be available to collect for free and are for each customer to keep so they can wear it every time they come into store. 

Sainsbury’s are the first supermarket to test the initiative, following Gatwick Airport’s successful launch, in which over 10,000 lanyards had been collected up to March 2019. By using the same sunflower lanyards as Gatwick Airport, Sainsbury’s nationally is rolling it out across their stores and hopes to encourage other retailers to follow suit, meaning customers have the option to wear their lanyard in shops across the UK, in the knowledge that store colleagues will recognise what it stands for. 

albrighton trust 250-253

Summer Holiday Activities at the Albrighton Trust Moat and Gardens

Albrighton Moat have many activities for young people of all abilities to do this Summer holiday. Whether you like nature, crafts, fishing, there is much fun to be had. Each session costs £5 per person and you have the opportunity to take part in either morning or afternoon sessions.

Anyone wishing to take part in fishing there will be qualified coaches on hand to help young, novice or inexperienced anglers have a go at fishing, learning skills such as baiting a hook, casting a line and landing and unhooking a fish. On the last day (22nd August) there will be a Fishing competition.

Click here to download a PDF of all activitiesAlbrighton Holiday Activities July and August 2019

Activities are also listed on our events pages at this link

action on hearing loss 250-253

Action on Hearing Loss-Survey

Five million people of working age are deaf or have hearing loss or tinnitus, but little is known about the support people are getting – or not getting – to help them in work, and the impact that this has. To find out more, Action on Hearing Loss are asking people who are currently in work to complete a survey.
The survey asks questions to find out:

● what support, if any, you are receiving in the workplace and how this helps
● what support would be helpful in the workplace that you are not receiving.

Results fro this survey will enable Action for Hearing Loss to work with service providers and the government to improve the support services available for people who are deaf or have hearing loss or tinnitus in work.
The information you provide in this survey will be used for research purposes. Your responses are anonymous and you will not be identified in any reporting or publication of the results.
By completing each question in this survey, you consent to Action on Hearing Loss to use this information as described above. You can choose which questions you want to answer and do not want to answer.
The survey should take around 15 minutes to complete. You can access the survey here:
If you have any questions about the survey or would like to complete the survey on paper, please email the research team at [email protected]
Action on Hearing Loss are also running focus groups for British Sign Language (BSL) users as part of this research. For more information visit
SDN 250 by 253

Have you the skills to be our next Chair or Secretary?

Shropshire Disability Network, our charity is run entirely by volunteers.  We are committed to improving the experiences of people living with disabilities, their carers and families. We cover the county of Shropshire, including the Telford & Wrekin area.

At our Annual General Meeting (AGM) in September we election people to serve on our Management Committee and have the following vacancies to fill. Chair and Secretary as well as deputies.

Click here for-Description of the role of Chair: Chair advert (3)

Click here for-Description of role of Secretary: Secretary advert (1)

If you would like to take on either the above roles, or know someone who may be willing to be the next Chair or Secretary of our growing charity, please let us know. 

Volunteering increases self-confidence.  If you have a desire to bring change for people with any kind of disability or their carers and families and to help them find a voice, this role will help provide support for these people.  Our volunteers have found that their efforts for Shropshire Disability Network have given them a sense of accomplishment as well as pride and identity.

If you would like to know more, please contact either Ruby Hartshorn on 07780 852 229 or Ann Shaw on 07970 816 030.  Or email [email protected]or [email protected]


PCC Outlines New Commitment to Tackling Serious and Organised Crime

John Campion, Police and Crime Commissioner is proposing a “relentless” new approach to tackling serious and organised crime in West Mercia.

The Police and Crime Commissioner’s new proposals include:

  • Measures to better protect the most vulnerable people in our communities
  • Ensuring ‘relentless disruption’ and tough, targeted enforcement action against the criminals who seek to harm our communities
  • Ensuring criminals are stripped of illegal assets and money, and then reinvesting it into our communities
  • improved partnership working and information sharing to create a ‘borderless’ approach, and tackle the root causes of serious and organised crime.

 John Campion said: “The impact of crimes such as child sexual abuse, county lines drug trades, modern slavery and human trafficking can be devastating. They can destroy individuals and damage entire communities.”

“We need to better support victims. We need local and national partners to work together more. We need to empower our communities to work closer with the police. Most of all perhaps, we need to be very clear that our police will be relentless in disrupting this offending, and bringing criminals to justice.”

“West Mercia remains a comparatively safe place, but we are not immune to serious and organised crime. This plan outlines how I will play my part and work with others to ensure our communities are safer and feel safer”.

The Commissioner’s strategy is out for consultation until 15th August. Partners and local communities are invited to read it in full and send feedback via Consultation responses can be sent via this link, or alternatively can be emailed to [email protected], or via mail to OPCC, West Mercia Police, Hindlip, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR3 8SP.

Click on this PDF to download and read the consultation: PCC-SOC-Strategy-FINAL-FOR-CONSULTATION


Childcare needs in Telford and Wrekin

This survey is to find out from parents and carers what their experiences and needs are in relation to childcare in Telford and Wrekin. They want as many people as possible to tell them about the Childcare that they need.

By giving the Council your views, they will be able to plan ahead and make sure that there are enough high quality childcare places at the times and places that families need them the most.

Complete the online questionnaire:

Having high quality and varied child care provision in the borough benefits the community, businesses and the local economy. As it affects everybody please encourage people to get involved too.

The survey is easily completed online at

The experience and results form part of the ‘Childcare Sufficiency Assessment’ which helps childcare providers to plan their services and meet the needs of the community.

The survey will close at 9 am on Monday 22 July, so please don’t miss out on having a say and please share the link with anybody you think would benefit from joining in.

If you have an questions please e-mail [email protected]


Polling Districts, Polling Places. Polling Stations Review-Shropshire 2019

Shropshire Council is due to undertake a Review of Polling Districts and Polling Places in accordance with the Representation of the People Act 1983 (as amended by the Electoral Administration Act 2006) and carry out a review of the voting arrangements in our area by 31st January 2020.

Stakeholders, partners and other interested parties are being asked to comment on polling districts, polling places and polling stations within Shropshire’s parliamentary constituencies.  They have asked Shropshire Disability Network to promote and contribute to the review  

Click this link for a Notice of the Review of Polling Districts. Polling Places and Polling Stations. Notice of Review of Polling Districts, Polling Places and Polling Stations 2019

Click here to download a current list of Polling Stations: Current List of Polling Stations

Comment should be made either by email to [email protected] or in writing to the Returning Officer, Elections Office, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury, SY2 6ND before the consultation deadline of Monday 12 August 2019. Alternatively download this form to complete and return Submission Form

The link to Shropshire Council website is

SDN Members who would like to contribute to a response from SDN as the “Collective Voice” can send comments us by using this form or by emailing [email protected]


Telford Sitting Volleyball 1

Telford Eagles Sitting Volleyball Team

Paul Twitchell, Head Coach of the recently formed Telford Eagles Sitting Volleyball Team is looking to invite as many disabled groups in Shropshire to try their exciting and fully inclusive sport in a fun and safe local club environment.

For more details check Telford Eagles Sitting Volleyball website:

The Eagles train on a Thursday evening 6 pm – 7 pm at Telford College Arts and Technology College,  Wellington in the S Block.

As the Club Welfare Officer Paul said “I can offer assurance of a positive experience for players of all abilities and disabilities. I only ask for people who require specialist care to be accompanied for safety reasons”.

For further details contact Paul by email [email protected] or call Paul on 07854 056639
Telford & Wrekin 250-253

Polling Station Review-Telford and Wrekin

Voting for your local and national representatives in Government is an essential part of involvement in society. Every Council has to periodically review the suitability and consider how accessible Polling Stations are to people with specific needs. Whilst doing this they should take into account  any comments or complaints received about the facilities.

Telford and Wrekin  Council has the responsibility for organising elections locally and has 77 locations across the Borough known as Polling Stations. These can be seen on this interactive map.

They have launched a review of all 77 of our Polling stations and are welcoming comments on all of them. However there are a number of polling areas where Telford and Wrekin Council are particularly considering changes:

1. Current Polling station: Lawley Village Primary Academy, Lawley

Proposal: to locate alternative Polling station due to parental complaints regarding school closure on election days. Only identified potential location is Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Lawley. (See this document Returning_Officer_s_Proposal )

2. Current Polling station: Ketley Bank Community Centre, Main Road, Ketley Bank

Proposal to relocate polling station to Queenswood Primary School, Yates Way, Ketley Bank, Telford TF2 0AZ due to future disposal of Ketley Bank Community Centre.

3. Current Polling station: St Patricks Catholic Primary School, North Road, Wellington

Proposal to relocate polling station from St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School, North Road, Wellington to Wellington Children’s Centre, North Road, Wellington, TF1 3ES

4. Current Polling station: The Red Lion Annex, Holyhead Road, Wellington

Proposals to relocate to Sir John Bayley Club, Haygate Road, Wellington as previous polling station has more complex access requirements and the facilities require maintenance that is not scheduled to take place.

You can find out more about the review and how to respond by visiting our Polling station review webpage.  The review closes on 30 July so please it is important you submit comments quickly.

For information about how elections are organised, the results of recent European, national, local government, and town and parish council elections please visit

SDN Members who would like to contribute to a response from SDN as the “Collective Voice” can send comments us by using this form or by emailing [email protected]