Digest April 2023

Digest April 2023


                            “Digest “ –    April, 2023

“I don’t feel old. I don’t feel anything until noon. Then it’s time for my nap”  ( Bob Hope)

Good News from the NPC London Region Council.

We are pleased to see that at the recent Council Meeting in Euston, none of the remaining Constitution amendments to be voted on were carried. This means that the Council can now move forward with the business of campaigning on the issues which the Convention exists to promote.

We were fortunate to have the NPC General Secretary, Jan Shortt present to give her guidance and command some gravitas during the lively meeting. 

NPC Press Release on the March Budget.

The Budget was disappointing as it ignored the oldest struggling to pay bills and in need of vital care. It benefits higher earners as the government abolished the Lifetime Allowance (LTA). There was no firm or clear resolution to the crisis in care services. Older people are dying through the lack of access to appointments and treatment. The government needs to confront employers about their ageist attitudes to employing older people.

Our Member, Alan Hart, commented that he was annoyed by how disappointing the Budget was for senior people, and also that it failed to have any resolution to the crisis in care. Another of our Members, Sue Stacey said that as the tax thresholds are frozen, her tax will increase, and that the government’s army of unpaid carers are saving them millions of pounds every year. Committee Member, Alan Grubb commented that the freezing of tax allowances hit low paid workers hardest and that He thinks there should be an increase in National Insurance which would be ring-fenced to pay for Social Care.


We promised in our March “Digest”to givemore detail aboutour Lottery Officer Margaret Haydon’s visit to South East Essex Alliance and the Southend Rotary Club’s “Community Gala” hosted by SAVS.  The aim of the Alliance is to encourage consistency and work together in a holistic manner to ensure there is no double-up of work, to encourage that projects are not replicated, resulting in efficiency and saving money. Our SDPC Committee is keen to be part of this group, and our Secretary Jean Howes is willing to represent us at their future meetings. 

Local charities and voluntary groups were invited by The Southend Rotary Club to their “Community Gala” with a tour of the Mayors residence with short talks from community leaders, and refreshments.

The Rotary Club feels that Southend is besieged by cost of living, debt, health, housing and mental health crises. It seems that whatever they do, it is not enough. They are keen to join forces with other groups to fund-raise, volunteer and get the message out. Margaret was able to speak to several people and put our point of view across. It was interesting and worthwhile hearing about the excellent work being done across the City.

Thank you, Margaret for your contribution and support.

Enhanced Community Transport within Southend

In the last Digest we let you know that Community Investment Board has made Community Transport within Southend one of its priorities. It welcomed expressions of interest by 22nd March, to set up a charity to run a properly funded community transport service.  They have postponed that deadline to the 26th April, . We are waiting to hear from Age Concern (Southend) on the matter.

Dates for your Diary

Jazz Centre UK. Live concerts on most Saturday afternoons. 2pm-4pm. Beecroft Art Gallery, Victoria Avenue, Southend. £10-£15.

Southend Central Museum. Victoria Avenue, Southend.

A stunning display of recent finds from the “London “ wreck” is now permanently on show at the Central Museum. Free entry between Wednesday and Sunday from 11am till 5pm

Music in the Park . Priory Park Bandstand  3.00-4.30pm Free event every weekend and Bank Holiday until Sunday 1st October 2023. Bring a chair.

Saturday, 22nd. April. Southend Choral Society. 80th Anniversary Concert. Verdi Requiem. Kings Road United Reform Church. SS0 8LH.  Conductor: Roger Humphrey.

With the Southend Concert Orchestra. From 7.45pm.   

Sunday, 23rd. April. St. Georges Day. (England).

Thursday, 27th. April. New teachers strike.

Friday, 28th. April. PCS Civil Service strike.

Sunday, 30th. April. Royal College ofNursing.   48 hour strike.

Monday 1st May. Old Leigh Artists Market.

Strand Wharf. Leigh on sea  10.00-4.00pm

Wednesday, 3rd. May. SDPC Fund-raising Lunch. 12 noon. Strawberry Fields, Beefeater. Near Tesco roundabout, Westcliff on Sea. Call Jean to book your place. Tel 341047

Thursday, 4th. May. Local City Council Elections. 7am -10pm.

Thursday, 11th. May. Southend City Council Annual Meeting and Mayor Making Ceremony. Civic Centre, Victoria Avenue

Saturday, 13th. May. Southend Bach Choir.

Spring Concert. St. Albans Church, St. John’s Road, Westcliff on Sea. SS0. From 7.30pm.

Conductor: Colin Edwards.

Wednesday, 17th. May.  

Next SDPC Meeting: Speakers from Essex Police. “Take 5 to stop fraud” From 2 pm.

Saturday 20th May. Trustlinks  May Fayre 11.00- 2.00pm Growing Together. Fairfax  Drive. Westcliff on Sea.

Sunday 21st May 10.00- 4.00pm Hamlet Court Road Harmony Event  with stalls from local businesses and charities featuring Spring Fayre at Havens Community Hub.  

From the Editor.

For me, it is shocking how many people don’t appear to know what’s going on in the country. So many vulnerable pensioners have not applied for Pension Credit, although they are entitled to it!  Over 850,000 of them would benefit from the payment and also, maybe find that they are entitled to many other benefits. The NPC has a useful Tool Kit on their website which explains how to apply.

Very recently, many of our citizens didn’t know that you need photo-ID in order to vote at a polling station for this year’s Local elections.

They either don’t hear the news, or don’t absorb the information.

On May 6th. King Charles the Third will be attending his Coronation Service in London. Who knew? It’s not often you witness millions of people watching a Christian church service on television. A very special occasion indeed.

Editor: Robert C. Howes.             

Tel. 01702 341047.  Email howes01702@outlook.com