It was mid January and freezing cold, but the reception we received at Worcester Early Years Centre in Manor Farm, Lower Wick, was very warm indeed. Owned by Alice Bennett and built to a very high specification, it is beautifully equipped with every imaginable requirement catered for. From babies through the pre-school years, the care and environment is second to none and the children present were clearly enjoying their time there. The Manager, Sue Foster, spent some considerable time, together with Alice, showing us around –including the beautiful grounds surrounding the building.
She has a great team working with her. Veronica Dowding manages the Nursery Unit, with Jo Graysmark looking after the catering based in an amazing kitchen. We also met Julie Margetts, Nicky Thompson and Jane Gordon, who looks after reception.
Another of Worcester’s gems was uncovered, tucked away in Wylds Lane: the home of the Talking Newspaper! Founded in 1978, by Colin and Beryl Chance, this organisation has provided blind and visually impaired readers with a weekly local talking newspaper, a monthly magazine and an extensive library of some 4,000-plus recorded books. These are freely available to blind and visually impaired people throughout Worcestershire. All services including equipment are provided completely free of charge. The service is entirely run by volunteers and does not benefit from any Government funding.
They are always looking for volunteers to help just a few hours a month as administrators, editors, readers, visitors and audio /IT engineers. They would also like to hear from anyone who might like to receive their services. Worcester Talking Newspaper can be contacted on 01905 767766. A remarkable organisation, doing a remarkable job. As I’ve said before, Worcester Volunteers and Charities are the mortar that holds the bricks of our society together!
Our University continues to grow and develop and we are fortunate to have such a progressive and highly respected organisation here in Worcester. The Mayoress and I had the opportunity to see the new Geology Garden, a quiet external learning and relaxation area. We also toured the Biological Science facilities in the Charles Darwin building, went on to the Biological Science Labs and spent some time with the trainee Paramedics and Physiotherapists. They are a great bunch, training for vital roles in society and, in the process, thoroughly enjoying it. Everyone we met welcomed us and had time for us. It is always a pleasure to visit our University and this was certainly no exception – thank you.