Digest-December 2020

Digest-December 2020


December 2020

Merry Christmas

In Committee

We were pleased that the Balmoral Centre reopened as covid safe after the November lockdown expired.  Note, this holds good for members meetings.  As the next is in a few days time,   we had to consider its catering.  We are painfully aware of the lack of members attending last December when professional entertainment had been laid on.  We had already decided against the same this year.  The now problem particularly felt by Jean was how many to cater for this time.  The decision was Christmas cake and mince pies.  Stuff that won’t go to waste if over provided.

We also decided to buy in a year’s worth of stamps.  Why?  The price is going up on 1 January and can be expected to happen again in March.

Now we have the vaccine

Described as a light at the end of a very dark tunnel.  Whereas few of us will be in category 1 there will be many in categories 2 & 3.  I want to hear from hopefully all who have had the shot.  I’ll publish selected experiences anonymously next month.

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

I have been such for Christine Sargent for several years.  One for me never occurred until out of the blue my daughters suggested it’s about time.  The theory is once you are unable to make rational decisions your attorneys do it for you.  You may be nervous about handing over so it behoves to choose carefully.  Our January 2020 speaker last year, Sue Byrne quoted incidents of foul play.  Now I have the forms to enable me to become the donor to my chosen attorneys I can quote the duties and your essential safeguards that follow the principles of the Mental Capacity Act:

  • They must assume that you can make decisions until it is established you cannot.
  • They must help you make as many of your own decisions as you can.
  • They must not treat you as incapable because you made an unwise decision.
  • They must act in your best interests when you become incapable.

Sue Byrne in from Sovereign Estates Planning.  Tel 01245 460383 for an interview.

Or email sue@sovereignestateplanning.co.uk.

A bit of fun

As most of the news this month is bad:

What did one hat say to the other. You wait here I’ll go on ahead…….Why did the bicycle collapse? It was two tired……How do you tell if a vampire is sick? By how much he is coffin……  ‘Why don’t eggs tell jokes? They’d crack each other up…….A couple of blondes get lost in a shopping centre, so they go to a map where they see a red arrow that says ‘You are here’. One blonde looks at the other and says ‘WOW’ How do they know that?

Urgent call number:  0333 015 3481

This will get you to the Community Coordination Centre and is the single point access to South East Essex Community Health Services by Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT)

Services it will provide:

• GPs and health and care professionals with streamlined access to EPUT community services for all urgent requests, and;

• patients and carers with one point of contact to re-connect with our services in an emergency or crisis

Call 0333 015 3481 if you need to contact any of our community services urgently.

Non-urgent referral enquiries should continue to be raised via the established routes.

Our new coordination centre is based in the grounds of Rochford Hospital and will take calls from GPs, health and care professional colleagues and patients under our care.

The centre brings together three core urgent access routes – the single point of referral (discharge to assess) team, 24/7 district nurse liaison team and urgent community response team (SWIFT).

There will be no changes to the community services offered by EPUT in South-East Essex or their current locations.

The creation of the new single point of access and coordination centre delivers on a long-standing request from healthcare partners to streamline access to the community services provided by EPUT.

If you have any queries please contact Kevin McKenny, Deputy Director of Integrated Care at EPUT, on kevin.mckenny@nhs.net

Call for your experience

What has life been like for you since the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic began? SOS Borough council wants to hear from you about your experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic and what steps you think the borough can take to ensure a positive future. https://yoursay.southend.gov.uk/residents-pulse-survey

Better News – Free Parking

All council run car parks across the Borough will be free on Thursdays after 4pm for late-night shopping and all day on Sundays until Christmas runs up to and including Thursday 24 December. The offer applies to council run ‘off-street’ car parks, but not ‘on-street’ parking bays.

Bad News for Premium Bond Holders

NS&I has cut its rates on several accounts as well as significantly lengthening the odds on winning the monthly prize draw with Premium Bonds. 

Its done this due to a flood of money coming in to the tune of billions during lockdown.  In July alone it was 9bn that is 9 times a normal month.  Because NS&I is backed by the Treasury it is not allowed to get too competitive.  The government sets a limit on its annual intake of savings.

The cuts in interest are reckoned to be

savage.  Income Bonds down from 1.6% to 0.1%.  Direct savers 1% to 0.15%.  Investment account 0.8 to 0.01%.  These changes are from 23 November.

From December the odds on a Premium Bond win reduces from 1 in 24,500 to 1 in 34,500.

This may be bad news for savers but it is likely to reverse the incoming flood and ease NS&I’s problem.

Some examples of easy access banks are Atom pays 0.75% and Saga 0.7%.  1% is available on 35 days notice from United Bank UK.  Minimum deposit for all these is £1.

Sign of the Times

Alvin King, husband of Jill, has closed his music shop after a life time.  Means he will be available for Bob’s contribution next month.

The obverse of Global Warming

An estimated 28,300 excess winter deaths occurred in England and Wales in winter 2019 to 2020, which was 19.6% higher than winter 2018 to 2019. Deaths where the coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate were excluded.

Dates for your diary

16th December: Members meeting,  Balmoral Centre. 2pm.   Colin Beaumont “My experiences as a Toast Master ” Balmoral is a “Covid-19 secure Community Facility”.  So please do join us.  

20th January: Members meeting,. 2pm.   Bob Howes “My musical Life”  

To 3 January except 24-26 Dec (Thur-Sun):  RHS Hyde Hall, “Glow Winter Illuminations”.  Need tickets in advance at rhs.org.uk/hydehallglow.  Members £6.95, non members £12.

To 24 Dec 9:30 to 4pm RHS Hyde Hall Christmas shopping for a world of plants.

Address:  Creephedge Lane, Rettendon, CM3 8RA.  Tel: 01245 402019

© DS/December 2020