Monthly Archives: April 2012

Musician Rick Wakeman opens Age UK fayre in Diss for the elderly and their carers

“It’s crucial local parishes and local communities and local towns support events like this.”

By REBECCA GOUGH Saturday, April 28, 2012
11:28 AM


  Amanda Palmer, Jen Cranshaw and Judith Head from the Denny Centre, with Rick Wakeman

No amount of wet weather could dampen the spirits of visitors to an annual spring fayre in aid of the elderly this morning (Saturday), opened by former rock-star Rick Wakeman.


With traditional events such as guess the weight of the cake, bric-a-brac stalls and a raffle, organisers hoped to raise as much money as possible for Age UK.

And they were not disappointed with visitors flocking to the event in Diss, as Mr Wakeman cut the ribbon.

The musician, 63, perhaps best known as keyboard player with the band Yes, who now lives with his wife in Scole, near Diss, said it was important to support local fundraisers.

Cash care system should be paying off

It’s been a bad week for the caring reputation of the state.


Lesley Riddoch:

Published on Monday 30 April 2012 00:00


A scheme exists for disabled, old or longterm sick to order their own care but many councils make it hard to use, writes Lesley Riddoch

It’s been a bad week for the caring reputation of the state.

A Sunday paper carried the story of a Scottish multiple sclerosis sufferer bedridden for two years after being discharged from hospital with bed sores. The 56-year-old Gourock woman was given a specially adapted bed (crammed into her own dining room) but no cure, compensation, physiotherapy or apparent caring support from anyone but her 80-year-old mother.

As sickness benefit cuts take effect, thousands face hard times

Fears those too ill to work will be unable to meet basic living costs as government limits contributory allowance to 365 days


Jenny Wheatley who was made redundant due to her anxiety and depression will lose her ESA as her husband earns £18,000.
Photograph: David Sillitoe for the Guardian

It all began with a telephone call. Earlier this month, Malcolm Parker, who has not worked since his spine collapsed three years ago, was rung out of the blue by an official from the Department of Work and Pensions. There was only one question: did his wife work more than 24 hours a week? Yes, said Parker, reasoning honesty was the best policy.

A fortnight later a letter dropped on the Parkers’ doormat. The department wrote bluntly to say his contributory employment and support allowance (ESA) would disappear on Monday.

Parker was taken aback. Having worked for 44 years in the construction trade and diligently paid his national insurance, he had expected to be protected should the worst happen. His wife Ruth was at first perplexed and then increasingly angry. Although her husband can visit the toilet by himself, with some difficulty, she comes home every lunchtime to feed and check on him.