Community Spotlight:

Living under lockdown

By Paul Nicholls

You might have recently been reading our series of interviews talking to the interesting and inspiring people of Burpham and Jacobs Well, however this time I wanted to find out a bit more about how we are all ‘living under lockdown’. I’ve spoken to a cross-section of our community to find out how they are coping with this new way of living from a family and a business perspective.

The past 6 weeks have certainly been ‘strange times’, a phrase I’ve heard from a lot of people recently, and the changes made to our lives in order to manage, battle and overcome the Coronavirus crisis have had an impact on all aspects of life.

Something that stands out to me is the more appropriate use of the word ‘hero’. No longer is it used for overpaid sports stars but is now so much more deservingly used to refer to our NHS superstars who have, and still are, courageously and selflessly treating and caring for people admitted
to our hospitals (whether suffering from Coronavirus or anything else).

Of course there are many other ‘frontline’ services, ranging from the police, the fire service and the army to utilities teams and volunteer organisations (to name but a few), that we rely upon in times of crisis and who are currently working hard on our behalf to keep the community safe and healthy.

The weekly Thursday clapping that we’ve all been joining in with has been a wonderful collaborative display of gratitude and a time when we peer out of our front doors and have the opportunity to briefly chat to our neighbours. There’s certainly a sense of support and community and this is something that I feel has been heightened in this time of shared experience, all the more enriched by the various social media groups that have sprung up to offer support and companionship (in my own experience I am now actively involved in 3 separate WhatsApp groups). This has lead me to consider everyone else in Burpham & Jacobs Well, how have their lives changed at the moment, what are they doing differently? I’ve spoken to a cross-section of our communities and asked them “what’s living under lockdown like for you”.

I recently spoke to an NHS nurse about her day-to-day routines and how they have been impacted by the Coronavirus. “Working for the NHS has changed dramatically for me as I have been redeployed to a community hospital looking after COVID-19 patients who are continuing their recovery after having been treated in larger hospitals. Morale is good but the shifts are hard – the PPE makes it very hot and uncomfortable!”

I asked her how this has affected life at home, especially as the children are currently off school “My husband is working from home and there’s enough to keep him busy but nowhere near normal, the kids do school work until lunchtime, and they go out for a bike ride every afternoon around the estate. With the fabulous weather we’ve been able to enjoy a relaxing glass of wine in the garden when the children have gone to bed, so at least there is some calm at the end of the day to try and unwind.”

Many of us have been doing our daily exercise and from my own experience it seems a lot of people have headed down to the nature reserve on Bowers Lane and along by the River Wey between Bowers Lock and Stoke Lock.

I asked Richard Cant from the National Trust about living under lockdown:

Richard Cant, Lengthsman, National Trust
“For the last 15 years I have worked as a Lengthsman for the National Trust
on the River Wey Navigation, looking after the 3.5 mile ‘length’ between Millmead Lock in Guildford and Bowers Lock at Burpham. As you can imagine this is normally a very varied role and depending on the seasons involves tree work, vegetation management, and water level control through the operation of weirs. Spring is usually a particularly busy time for us Lengthsmen as the boating season informally starts at Easter and we always try our hardest to make sure the locks are painted and the grass is neatly mown so everywhere is looking its best.

Of course this year is very different because of the Coronavirus Pandemic, Bowers Lock at Burpham navigation has been suspended for boat users (we’ve been open since 1653) and our visitor centre at Dapdune Wharf in Guildford hasn’t been able to open yet. All this means that we’re running on a skeleton crew of staff, and along with our conservation volunteer groups having to be cancelled we are limited to what we can achieve. However wildlife and the weather mean that I’m still on 24hr call out for water level control and incidents, such as the fallen tree blocking the towpath on Easter Monday (they seem to be able to sense a bank Holiday).

“One thing that I have noticed during this crisis is how many more people are using the towpath and enjoying their daily exercise at this beautiful location on their doorstep, many of whom never even realising you could walk along the river, let alone that it’s owned by the National Trust.”

One thing that I have noticed during this crisis is how many more people are using the towpath and enjoying their daily exercise at this beautiful location on their doorstep, many of whom never even realising you could walk along the river, let alone that it’s owned by the National Trust. Spring is a wonderful time with blossom, wildflowers, butterflies and ducklings all making an appearance, and I’ve felt even luckier during this time to live and work on the river, especially having my two young daughters off school and at home. I hope that if one good thing can come out of this situation is that people will continue to take time each day to get out and enjoy the outdoors, it really is so important for mind, body and soul.”

Jo White, Headteacher, Burpham Primary School
“On the 20th March school life as we knew it changed with the announcement that all schools should ‘close until further notice’ for all but a small minority of children. Headteachers like myself from all over the country suddenly found themselves faced (after very little notice or guidance) with the challenge of running a virtual school, a childcare centre and a food service. It feels like a lifetime ago that the school was buzzing with over 400 children and 80 plus staff and I think it is the eerie quietness of the building now we are down to less than 5% of that which is the most unsettling.

“I am so appreciative of our strong school community and the support from staff and parents has been incredible.”

I am so appreciative of our strong school community and the support from staff and parents has been incredible. We all have a mental list of the things we would like to get done if we only had the time but actually most of my list has gone by the wayside and I’ve decided that the only way through this
is one day at a time. It feels too early to be talking about silver linings when so many families are facing such loss and hardship, but I hope that the ‘powers that be’ will reflect on the things that really matter and it may be that education is never quite the same again…”

Rev Jo & Rev James Levasier, Burpham Church
“Living under lockdown has been an interesting experience for us as I am
sure it has for other families. Suddenly finding you’re ‘stuck’ with each other all the time and having to do everything online has not been without its challenges. A month ago, I’d never even heard of Zoom and Teams, and we’d never explored live streaming, whereas now the whole family is involved in this every day. A steep learning curve! We are very mindful that others are in much more difficult places, and it has been very frustrating at times that we are not able to get out there and do more. I am constantly grateful for the gift of technology and the wealth we live in which gives us access to a whole host of ways of communicating.

The Levasiers under lockdown

Other pluses: we’ve eaten a lot more meals together, developed some new family traditions and haven’t had to get up so early for school! Most of all I think this has made me appreciate the amazing people who make up our church family as I’ve seen them in action in the community.”

“A month ago, I’d never even heard of Zoom and Teams, and we’d never explored live streaming, whereas now the whole family is involved in this every day.”

Russell Brown, Director, CMB Accountants
“It has certainly been an unusual time during lockdown. It’s getting easier now, but initially it was a real struggle trying to assist our three children with their schoolwork who seem to think I can instantly recall what I learnt in my lessons some 37 years ago! We find the daily exercise routine very rewarding, and an opportunity for us all to get out. It’s been great exploring the trails around Burpham Nature Reserve, a lovely area. It’s good to also see familiar faces doing the same things as you – there is a real feeling in the community that we are all in it together. Helping neighbours with their shopping and medication has become part of the routine. Alternating workdays between home and office has been a nice change, and one that will probably continue. Clients have needed assistance with COVID-19 Business Support measures, and it has been a pleasure helping them
with this process.

“It has certainly been an unusual time during lockdown. It’s getting easier now, but initially it was a real struggle…”

From a business perspective, the impact has been dramatic for those adversely affected. Typically, this has seen an abrupt fall in income, or having to adapt to new working patterns or practice. The emphasis has been on helping clients to fully understand the business support measures available to them. The headline announcements include the Job Retention scheme for furloughed staff or the Self-Employment Support scheme. Both of these aim to preserve the majority of an individual’s earnings subject to certain conditions and duration. Other support measures or deferral of tax payments may also be available in certain instances. At the moment, routine compliance work has understandably been put on the backburner, with the priority being on trying to ensure that clients are in the best position that they can be once things return to some sort of normality.

Hopefully, things will return to normality as soon as possible, and the footie season can resume – those premier league tickets are not looking such a good purchase at the moment. Stay safe everyone.”

Kate Carriett, Headteacher, George Abbot School
“Being Headteacher at George Abbot is the sort of job where no two days are ever the same. Interactions with people are at the core of any teacher’s work. Not seeing most of those people in person for 5 weeks has brought many challenges!
We were expecting schools to close but not quite as soon as they did, so there was a lot of quick work to be done. I am really proud of the school team’s response. We have virtual learning working for all of our students and daily education support at school still being provided for the children of our key workers and those who are most vulnerable. Assemblies are being delivered, teachers are providing lots of resources and lessons by Zoom, work is being submitted remotely.

“We were expecting schools to close but not quite as soon as they did, so there was a lot of quick work to be done. I am really proud of the school team’s response.”

I am dividing my time between being at school and working from home. There, my husband and two sons are busy with remote work and education and there are moments of both calm and chaos. I have tried really hard to keep in touch with the outside every day – in the last five weeks, like many of you, I have taken great joy in the leaves unfurling, the bluebells emerging, the crescendo of birdsong as traffic noise has dimmed and the simple pleasure of seeing the sun go down at the end of the day.

Best wishes to all in our community for courage and good health.”

It’s been interesting to hear how we are all dealing with the lockdown in our own ways and coping with the individual challenges that our jobs are presenting. I do hope that you too have found some comfort in these shared experiences.

 

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Togetherness in lockdown

Written by Ali Fisher

My goodness how our world has changed since the last edition of Burpham Pages, globally, nationally and locally.

A good few weeks into our current reality of a world working so, so hard to cope with all the brutal challenges of Covid-19, I’m struck by how together our community feels in a time of social distancing and self-isolation. Despite so many of us now living almost 24/7 locked down behind our front doors, staying home to stay safe, somehow our neighbours’ doors feel more open than ever before.

Essays will be written by future generations on how communities responded to this almighty challenge. My sense is we will reflect and feel very proud of how the Burpham community came together to fight the challenge of the coronavirus.

Here are some of the amazing ways we have seen the brilliant Burpham and surrounding community rising to these incredibly challenging times. We’d love to hear your observations in the comments section below.

Caring

This seems to have been the lead response to the crisis from so many. To care. To give. To help. Burpham Church & the Burpham Community Association quickly came together to form Burpham Community Care and had a fantastic response to their request for volunteers to help the vulnerable, with 200 local people putting their hands up to help.

Some wonderful individuals and groups, including the 1st Merrow Scout Group, have been collecting food donations and home-baked goodies for busy, over-stretched, exhausted NHS workers. Others are regularly calling those more isolated to offer a friendly chat, and it’s not just a quick hello but often a half-hour or hour-long conversation. Social media call outs for much needed donations for the North Guildford Foodbank have resulted in generous drop-offs. In this time of crisis, Burpham is proving itself a strong and willing community of givers and carers.

Giant ‘Thank you NHS’ etched out on Stoke Park. Guildford Borough Council.

Sharing

Who knew that in 2020 the ultimate gift would be a 4 pack of loo rolls?! Yet friends and neighbours have come to the rescue when someone’s found themselves caught short, be it loo roll, an egg or two, some flour or pasta. Offers have abounded to help keep families entertained with games and book swapping. Generous ‘please rehome’ boxes have been left out to share bits and bobs. Cakes being baked mean slices left on neighbours’ doorsteps. Kind kids are learning a knock and step back technique to gift at a socially distant 2m+.

Appreciative

The floodgates of thankfulness have opened. Appreciation is definitely contagious. Some gestures are breath-taking. Have you seen the giant ‘Thank you NHS’ etched out on Stoke Park? Others are smaller in size and scale but no lesser appreciated or impactful, from a thumbs up to passing bus drivers and posties to the claps of applause to those delivering meals on wheels. It’s heartening to hear the many thankyous passed on to the store staff in Sainsbury’s, Aldi, Cook, McColls, The Bakery & Wine Rack, where so many are working to keep our community fed and watered. Rainbows and thankyous on green, brown and black bins seem to be gathering momentum to say thanks to yet more brilliant community keyworkers. THANK YOU.

Rainbows and thankyous on bins.

Expressive

Who hasn’t been brightened by the explosion of sunshines and rainbows in Burpham? Well done to the kids of Sunshine Nursery in Sutherland Memorial Park whose sunshines are brightening daily exercise in the park. Kids have hungrily reclaimed our pavements with chalk rainbows, Easter eggs & Easter bunnies & powerful blue NHS hearts.

By Georgie Fisher, Age 7 Burpham
By Teddy Taylor, Age 6 Burpham

Connected

With people living local in a way that hasn’t been done for decades, we are finding the time, energy and passion to connect more deeply with those around us and our locality. WhatsApp and Facebook groups are popping up for streets and roads to help connect neighbours. We are being given the opportunity to reconnect with nature. With less traffic drowning out the birdsong and daily exercise providing opportunities to visit some of our quieter outdoor spots, now is a unique moment to drink in the wonders of nature that surround us.

This is an unprecedented time of challenge, struggle, sadness and hardship but our local community is shining through with its kindness and togetherness, in a way that could leave a positive lasting legacy for Burpham locals.

Useful local contacts:

Burpham Community Care
support@burphamca.org.uk or telephone 07880 586455

North Guildford Food Bank – Facebook at www.facebook.com/NorthGuildfordFoodBank/ or website at northguildfordfoodbank.co.uk

 

Coronavirus support from Guildford Borough Council

If you’re looking for help or if you would like to volunteer to help others here is some useful information and contact details. With the advice to ‘stay at home’ many people might feel isolated, anxious or in need of help and support. Help is available!

Burpham Community Support are offering all sorts of support (contact them on 07880 586455) and Guildford Borough Council have circulated the following information:

Resident Support from Guildford Borough Council

If you are self-isolating, feel you need support or you would like to help others, please contact us:

To help you
Call our Community Helpline on 01483 444400 or go online at www.guildford.gov.uk/home for help with food, prescription collection and support for yourself – or you can register a relative, friend or neighbour on their behalf (helpline is open Mon-Fri 8.30am-7pm and Sat and Sun 10-2pm and Bank Holidays).

Call our Safe and Settled team on 01483 444476 if you have recently come home from hospital or are struggling to manage at home. We can help with adaptations, urgent repairs to your home and also answer queries about private tenancy agreements and landlord disputes. (Phone lines open Mon-Fri 8.30am-5pm and from 10-2pm on Sat, Sun & Bank Holidays).

To help others
Call 01483 505050 if you would like to volunteer to help others and we will
put you in touch with community groups.

To keep up to date with everything about Guildford please sign up at
www.guildford.gov.uk/aboutguildford

Further to this information there are a number of resources available from Guildford Borough Council online at www.guildford.gov.uk/Covid19

Please remember:
No volunteer should ask you for exchange of money or bank card details
Nobody should enter your property
All items should be left on your doorstep
If you have any concerns with callers at your doorstep, please call Guildford Borough Council on 01483 505050 or if it is an emergency and you feel at risk please call 999

So, please try not to feel too isolated and anxious. If there is help and support that you need in these difficult times then there are organisations out there who are ready and willing to help. And, if you want to help others these organisations will point you in the right direction.

Burpham Community Support
www.burphamchurch.org.uk
www.burphamca.org.uk

www.guildford.gov.uk/Covid19

#StayHomeToSaveLives

 

Just keep going

In 1939 at the start of WW2 nearly 2.5 million posters saying “Keep Calm and Carry On” were printed by the British Government. On my mother’s side, she and her family were captured and interned in a concentration camp, so ‘keeping calm’ was a difficult option and ‘carrying on’ their old life not an option! A better expression for them became, ‘Just keep going’.

In has been interesting listening to people who were so ready to take on the challenge of lockdown. Someone who worked at the hospital said there was lots of energy for the challenge ahead. Parents had creative ideas for engaging their children over the Easter holidays and then the Summer term. Those who were now working from home were so busy adapting to a new working environment that there was no time to reflect on their usual conditions. Some who had lost jobs or are in new financial position were using their energy to improve their situation.

The reality of the difficulties is now beginning to take its toll on us all. Some hospital workers are now getting very tired. Children are struggling to stay engaged still at home. One person who works from home was saying how energy-sapping one Zoom meeting after another, after another was to his day. The financial reality for others is beginning to bite as savings run out. While our home has not caught the virus, some of our friends and family have now.

This virus situation is like the part of a marathon where you have run 20 miles but the finish is not yet in sight!

I have shared with you before that I love running marathons and this virus situation is like the part of a marathon where you have run 20 miles but the finish is not yet in sight! Some call it The Wall! My greatest lesson here is to simply focus on the end that will come and say to myself “just keep going” and celebrate each mile. This does not change the situation but just helps shift the focus from the current struggle to the end destination.

There is a bit in the Bible which says a similar thing in a better way!

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

Galatians 6:9

Rev James Levasier

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Church office: 01483 825533
www.burphamchurch.org.uk

Advice from the Chiropractic Clinic during Lockdown

by Philip J Hehir DC

Millions of people around the world are currently facing the challenges of working from home. As such, these can place significant strains on our physical and mental wellbeing.

As I write this article, it is Week-6 of UK COVID-19 restrictions and I have to
report, our clinic is receiving an increasing number of phone calls asking for advice. To help with these challenges, the clinic has been giving free virtual consultations to members of the community which has given us a snapshot of what’s happening out there.

Most requests are related to back, neck and muscle pain; and of course, stress. We believe the most likely culprits for this sudden rise is poor workspace setups and living more sedentary lifestyles. I include here some of the key issues that have cropped up consistently in our consultations and encourage you to take on board:

  1. Assess your workplace Workers who have been asked to work from home do so in environments that aren’t necessarily ideal. Just as you would modify your car seat after your spouse has used it, you should assess and modify your workstation. HR don’t plan to come to your house to do it for you. Here’s the checklist:
    – Eyes: Screen height should be straight ahead at eye level. Adjust the height of your seat. Don’t work with your laptop on your thighs! Consider a verti-lift screen adjuster or if wish to splash out, a sit to standing desk.
    – Good Posture: Elbows level with the desk and shoulders relaxed. Bottom should be against the back seat and shoulder blades should be touching the back rest of the chair. Knees should not be higher than hips. Maintain a relaxed posture. Breathe.
    – Brugger! Google ‘Bruggers Relief’ and do this throughout the day.
    – Standing: Stand up every 45-minutes (at least) and move around, even if it’s just to get a glass of water. This will stop a process called ‘creep’ occurring in your muscles which increases your risk of injury.
  2. Hydrate Have a glass or a bottle of water next to your desk throughout the day to help keep you well hydrated.
  3. Have a break Ensure you have a break in your designated lunchtime. Get out in the sunshine and get some immune enhancing Vitamin D – viruses don’t want you to know about this!
  4. Exercise ‘Sitting is the new smoking’. This WILL be a driver in the surge of aches and pains we will see after the lockdown is lifted. Ensure you use your one-hour every day for some form of exercise. This is particularly important for our mental wellbeing as well as physical.
  5. Offer Support Human beings are social animals. Keeping in regular contact with your friends, families and neighbours and offering to help out whenever you can, causes the brain to secrete dopamine – one of our happy hormones. If you haven’t tried in a while, give it a go.
  6. Watch Your Thoughts Be grateful that you have a roof over your head; a job; a family; a purpose; an opportunity to reflect; an opportunity to plan. A good mindset will most certainly help you and your mental wellbeing get through this time.

 

Grow your own

Moira McQuaide Hall’s history of Burpham

Due to the Coronavirus lockdown perhaps we will be encouraged to grow our own food in the future?

Apparently the amount of land for allotments has dropped by over 50% since the 1960s. Getting fruit and vegetables from supermarkets has become the focus of panic buying. The Burpham allotments in Bower’s Lane might be an alternative – they are managed by the Guildford Allotments Society, with a local site representative to manage the area and sort out day to day issues.

The 1914 OS maps showed Allotment Gardens behind Burpham Primary School, edged by the river on one side, Burpham Lane on the other, and extending down to the old brick field next to Pimm’s Row. In the 19th century and earlier most houses had a small garden where some vegetables could be grown. According to records in the early 20th century Burpham had several market gardeners, smallholders and nurserymen, presumably many of them used the allotments, including the Kemps, Kilbys and Russells. Residents in Pimm’s Row grew produce in the gardens in front of the cottages. Leonard Vincent, who was a market gardener well into the 1960s, donated some of the land by his house in Bower’s Lane to the Council for allotments.

The 1934 OS map showed Market Gardens still there beside and behind the school. During the war the children were encouraged to grow vegetables, then after the war some of the allotment land was taken to provide a playing field for the school. However, the school lost some of that land when the A3 was built in the 1980s.

In 2007 there was a spate of attacks on allotments around Guildford. A Surrey Live report said: “The devastation at Burpham was unbelievable. It was like a First World War battlefield. They had chopped the greenhouses to bits. It was a mess.” It seemed that the black market value of aluminium was the cause, but the result was improvements to the fencing around the site and a locked gate. One of the Burpham allotment plots was the overall winner in the Guildford in Bloom 2015. There are vegetables, fruit, flowers, sheds, greenhouses, cages and polytunnels – even the occasional table and chairs for those social or rest moments.

Allotments in Burpham

As I look out at my garden I have to wait for months for the fruit to ripen and I don’t have any vegetables – yet! Perhaps allotments will come into a new heyday as a result of the virus. If you don’t have an allotment then perhaps the Gardening Club could help you transform part of your garden? It could be good for all of us.

If you are willing to share your memories and/or photos to tell us more about Burpham then please contact Moira MacQuaide, either by e-mail (moira.macquaide@gmail.com) or by phone or text (07963 756543). My two books (‘The History of Burpham Primary School’ and ‘Burpham – A Gateway to Guildford’) are still available from me for £10 (free delivery locally) or on Amazon.

Community Update May 2020

Coronavirus – where are we now?

This is being written in early April and we have no way of knowing what has happened between then, and when you read this. All we can tell you is what we have done so far.

Our Membership Secretary, Liz Turner, and members of Burpham Church have worked incredibly hard to set up a support group to ensure that anyone living in Burpham who needs help will get it.

Many willing volunteers delivered postcards to every house and flat giving details of how to ask for assistance and the support group is already getting shopping done and prescriptions collected for some forty residents. Anyone living alone has been offered the opportunity for telephone chats and cards sent for birthdays or just to spread some cheer.

How do I ask for help?

You can phone on 07880 586455 or email support@burphamca.org.uk, or contact the secretary (details on opposite page).

Don’t suffer in silence or try and muddle through; if you need help, ask for it and we will do our best to assist.

Is there anything I can do to help?

If you think you can help in any way, please contact the support group, details above.

The BCA would like to offer a huge thank you to all those who have helped so far.

Please look out for your neighbours and people you know are vulnerable.

Spring flowers are doing their best to cheer us up in these trying times and Burpham gardens are looking wonderful. Can you identify the wisteria-covered cottage on the left? Sadly, it has had to be cut back a bit since the photo was taken, as the house was in danger of disappearing but you must have seen and admired it… where? No prizes if you know, just a warm glow.

We’d like to give our website a spring into summer look so how about sending us photos of your garden that we can display.

Traffic problems in Burpham

You may have read an article in the March/April edition of the Burpham Pages by Sue Hackman on behalf of the Orchard Road Area Road Group. This outlined some of the traffic problems that the Gosden Hill development will dump on Burpham.

This is something that the BCA has been highlighting ever since the Local Plan first came out for consultation in 2016 when we wrote that:

Without sensible infra-structure changes, particularly in relation to Guildford’s unresolved traffic problems… Burpham will degenerate into a giant roundabout… how can this be considered sound and sustainable?”

This is why we initiated the Burpham Road Action Group two years ago but we cannot achieve much unless people are prepared to come forward.
We cannot do a lot at the moment but perhaps you could think about joining us. If you are not familiar with the proposals, do go to the GBC website and look at the Draft Strategic Development Framework (SDF) Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). You will then understand why our response used words and phrases like specious, wishful thinking, design that ignores reality, nonsense and preposterous.

And finally…

Someone suggested that poetry is a help in troubled times. Ever ready for a challenge, two committee members volunteered a haiku summing up the lockdown. Haiku is a verse style of 17 syllables arranged in three lines – five, seven, five.

Life is diminished
There are no chocolate eggs
I am desolate.

–––––––––––––––
While walking the downs
At Old Scotland Farm I found
A lovely real beer!

We feel sure you can do much better so how about sending us a lockdown haiku, limerick or even a sonnet – something to raise a smile in difficult times.

To get in touch with the BCA: Contact the secretary on secretary@burphamca.org.uk phone 01483 567791 or visit the website at www.burphamca.org.uk

Help by joining the Burpham Community Association today!

Subscriptions are £8 per household or £4 per single occupancy and run from January to December. Join now or renew your membership for 2020.

You can pay by:

Direct Debit – visit our website at http://www.burphamca.org.uk which has a link to this system – an email to treasurer@burphamca.org.uk giving your details would be helpful.

Online
Account name: Burpham Community Association
Sort Code: 40-22-26
Account Number: 41049194
To help the Treasurer please identify yourself using initials, surname and the first line of your address.

Please contact Liz Turner, our Membership Secretary, if you have any queries. Her email address is membership@burphamca.org.uk

For up to date information about the BCA, please keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter pages – just search for Burpham Community Association.

Burpham Community Care during coronavirus epidemic

This scheme is an outstanding example of community groups working together and our neighbourhood volunteering to look after each other.

Within a week Burpham Church and Burpham Community Association had joined forces, set up a small team and put a postcard through every door in Burpham offering support through the weeks of this epidemic.

We have had over 200 people offering to volunteer which has been staggering and we now, unfortunately, need to turn volunteers away. It has been so heartening to see how people generously want to help others. We can never thank each volunteer enough and we really do not want people to be disheartened if we do not use them. Unfortunately, we have had little demand for dog walking despite this being the most popular request from volunteers.

As of the middle of April we have had sixty requests for direct help. This has involved shopping, collecting prescriptions and one dog to be walked. We have signposted many people to local delivery services and other sources of advice. We have established a system of telephone support to check our growing group of people who need a bit more than a simple task being done. We ensure all the correct safeguards are in place to protect those asking for help and our volunteers. People have contacted us from all over the country to ask for help for their relatives and friends living locally.

We are also hearing of amazing road groups keeping an eye on each other. Please let us know about you so we do not duplicate the great local networks.

We have put long lost friends in touch after someone contacted us about the whereabouts of their neighbour from 50 years ago and heard some great tales about Burpham in the process. We have responded to calls from East Anglia to look after an aunt. We have listened to people’s concerns and provided listening ears and contact. We have had numerous messages of gratitude for our wonderful volunteers.

We are very keen to ensure we are reaching people who need us. Please spread the word and remind neighbours who maybe alone of any age, maybe lone parents struggling to shop with young children or families self-isolating and not sure how to get food and other essential supplies.

Contact us for help:

07880 586455 (All day, every day)
support@burphamca.org.uk
01493 825533 (Burpham Church office hours)
www.burphamchurch.org.uk
or www.burphamca.org.uk

Liz, Gracie, Lisa, Marcelle and Ann your Burpham Community Support Co-ordinators.

 

May & June 2020 at Burpham Church

All activities mentioned are happening during lockdown. (Please note that we are not confirming any post lockdown activities at this stage.) Whilst our church buildings are closed, the church is very definitely still alive and kicking in new formats.

All online events can be accessed though the church website www.burphamchurch.org.uk

Sundays 10.00am: Contemporary Church Service

10.00am We are streaming a 45 minute service each week, with input from those in the community, updates on our care programmes, music, readings, and a short message from God’s word. Suitable for everyone.

Thursdays 11.00am: Traditional Church Service

11.00am A more traditional style church service for those who enjoy the familiar words and forms.

Wednesdays & Sundays: Youthwork

Our regular youth work programme continues online on Wednesdays and Sundays. Please contact our youth worker Nicky Geraghty, nicky@burphamchurch.org.uk, to get involved.

Fridays 11.00am: Caterpillar Café

11.00am Our Toddler Group is streaming a 15 minute event once a week with songs, a Bible story and a craft activity to join in with.

Saturday May 16th & June 20th: Messy Church

Our regular monthly Messy Church programme will continue with a shorter online event at 4:30pm.

A Serenity Ladies event is being planned for this term; its shape depending on lockdown arrangements.

For more details please look on the church website www.burphamchurch.org.uk

May & June 2020 at Burpham Preschool

The Preschool is open for key-worker children and has been asked by Early Years to cover for other local key-worker children as needed. Our staff are also working hard to provide home activities to support parents of preschoolers in this lockdown period. ‘Virtual visits’ will soon be available if you are looking for somewhere to send your 2-4 year old in September.

Please do contact the church office for more information 01483 825533