Category Archives: News

Spring Update

30 Years of the Reader Service!

As you are probably aware by now, the Milton Keynes Reader Service is celebrating 30 years of helping visually impaired and other disabled people in the Milton Keynes area. The service was originally set up by a group of visually impaired people, headed by Liz Roe in 1988.  In 1992 it became an independent charity offering free services to any adult living in Milton Keynes who finds reading or writing difficult due to physical or visual disabilities.

We kicked off our celebration year with the New Year Coffee Morning, at which it was lovely to see so many of you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We continued with the “eggciting” entry of our team into the television quiz show Eggheads.  Our plucky group travelled up to Glasgow in January.  An edited version of Terry Calvert’s description of their antics is as follows:

“Paula Suchy, Stephen Harrison, Geoff Bashton, Nana Frempong, Alison Statham and Terry Calvert made up the team.

The wardrobe staff selected the outfits they wanted us to wear and the team was sent to makeup. The ladies required very little assistance, but Jeff did insist on his favourite brands of foundation and moisturiser!

Then it was off to the studio. It takes about two hours in all but everyone agreed that the time flew by. Jeremy Vine and the Eggheads team were a pleasure to meet.

An added bonus on the trip was that we discovered deep fried Mars bars really are available in Glasgow chip shops. Stephen also discovered that his favourite tipple, Irn Bru, is now available in a diet version!”

The full version of Terry’s report is on the website.

Diary Dates:

As we continue to celebrate through the year we have secured a fabulous new venue at The Oak Tree Centre in Shenley Brook End.  Please make a note of the following diary dates and join us whenever you are able:

Wednesday, 2nd May – Volunteers Support Meeting

7.00pm – 9.00pm

We intend to make it a fun evening, celebrating our roots in 1988 with a trivia quiz for that year;

Friday, 22 June – Quiz Night, 7.00pm – 10.30pm

Paula and Stefan will hold one their popular quiz nights. There will be a raffle and some fun activities during the interval;

Saturday, 28 July – AGM , 10.00am – noon

Tea, coffee and cake after the official bit..;

Autumn – Eggheads Team on TV

The date of airing has yet to be confirmed.  We will keep you posted;

Saturday, 13 October –Tea Party, 2.00pm – 4.00pm

For all friends of the Reader Service past and present – to celebrate everyone involved over 30 years!

 Friday, 30 November – Cabaret! 2.00pm – 4.00pm

Those of you who were present for last year’s inaugural show will remember what a fabulously entertaining afternoon we had.  Anyone wishing to showcase their talents this year is most welcome to put themselves forward.

We are considering a number of other activities to enhance our profile and celebrate this milestone anniversary, so please keep checking the website, emails and Sound News for updates.  Meanwhile, we look forward to seeing you at one or more of the events mentioned here.

 

 

 

 

Community Car Raffle Draw

The Reader Service was represented by Stephen Harrison, Jeff Bashton, Malcolm and Terry Calvert at Milton Keynes Community Foundation’s Charity Car Raffle Draw on Sunday 25 February.

 

 Reader Service sold almost 1,000 tickets out of a total of around 22,000 and we will receive a proportion of the ticket sales. The draw, which was attended by the local community groups which volunteered to sell the tickets, took place at Planet Ice during the MK Lightning’s ice hockey match with Coventry Blaze.

The winning ticket was sold by the Friends of Willen Hospice.

We were fortunate that Malcolm, who has spent many years in hockey mad Canada, was with us to explain some of the finer points of the game, though this did not have to cover the tactic of punching your opponent’s lights out, which we grasped quite quickly. Sadly, Lightning could not complete the success of the evening, going down 8-5.

Terry Calvert, March 2018

MK readers at “Eggheads”

In January a team representing the MK Reader Service travelled to snowy Glasgow to take part in the BBC quiz show, “Eggheads”. Paula Suchy, Stephen Harrison, Jeff Bashton, Nana Frempong, Alison Statham and Terry Calvert made up the team which took on the quiz experts in a bid to win money for the service.

 

 

We were well looked after by the production team there. The wardrobe staff selected the outfits they wanted us to wear and the team was sent to makeup. The ladies required very little assistance, but Jeff did insist on his favourite brands of foundation and moisturiser!

 

Then it was off to the studio. It takes about two hours in all, with all the breaks to change the team members in the question room, but everyone agreed that the time flew by. Jeremy Vine and the Eggheads team were a pleasure to meet. Jeremy even took time during breaks in filming to chat and take selfies with the team!

We were told that our episode will be aired later in the year and we will publicise the date, when known, so that you can see how we got on. Until then, we are only allowed to say that we had a lovely time there and it proved to be a great experience.

An added bonus on the trip was that we discovered deep fried Mars bars really are available in Glasgow chip shops. As if things couldn’t get better, Stephen discovered that his favourite tipple, Irn Bru, is now available in a diet version! Who would have thought it?

Terry Calvert

Thank you Dobbies!

Our fabulous bucket shakers were out in Dobbies Garden Centre in Bletchley last weekend.  Thank you to them for their time and effort on quite a chilly assignment.

A valuable £276.00 was raised!

 

Great job everyone and thank you to Dobbies,  their generous customers and of course, Paula Varey for coordinating  everything.

Calling All MK Reader Friends – past and present!

Have you ever had any dealings with the Reader Service, either as a Volunteer or Service User?  Over the course of our 30 years we have met some amazing people who we are eager to thank for contributing to the success of our service.

We are keen to hear from old friends and colleagues in this, our 30th birthday year.  We would like to invite as many of you as possible to our birthday tea in October and would therefore be delighted if you would renew contact with us.

Please call the office or drop us an email and we will happily add you to our guest list.  We  really hope to see you all again soon.