Registered charity number 1188652
Charity News
Welcome to issue 22, this issue has been compiled while wearing extra socks.  Brrrrrr its cold, roll on summer!

We hope you enjoyed last month's newsletter  If you missed it here is a link:   Click here to see
Again NHS England is warning people about  fraudulent calls and text messages offering the COVID-19 vaccination.  Recipients are being asked to press a number on their keypad or to send a text message to confirm they wish to receive the vaccine. Doing so is likely to result in a charge being applied to their phone bill. In some cases, callers are offering the vaccine for a fee or asked for bank details.
  • The NHS WILL NEVER ask you to reply to text messages or calls via text message.
  • The vaccine is FREE and the NHS will never ask for payment or banking details.
 This is one scam example
Current Activities
Fit&Fab  Tuesdays and Thursdays 10:30 am virtual sessions via Zoom. Angela puts you through your paces in the safety of your own home. Seated exercise only if you are on your own. 

Virtual Pub Quiz   Every 1st Saturday of the month. (next one is 6th Feb 11:00 am) Zoom in with the in-crowd. Several rounds of General Knowledge, Music and Pictures. A bit of a social at the end. Join our Zoom Meeting. 
‘Younger Chaps Group’  (they are still working on a name!) This is for guys more recently diagnosed – meeting via zoom at present but they are hoping to get back to the Pub or the Snooker or the Tenpin Bowling or the many Restaurant's or Walks (you get the picture, they get about a bit.) Use any of the contact methods below to get your invite.
Northants Parkinson's People contact details are

From time to time we are asked to share information which may be of interest to our readers.   Whilst we wish to help you to be informed of services available to you, we cannot accept any liability whatsoever should you decide to use any of the services we inform you of.

Barchester Healthcare sends the members of
Northants Parkinson’s People best wishes for a happy and safe 2021.
We are delighted to let you know that our care homes are already receiving Covid-19 vaccinations and are able to safely welcome respite or permanent residents.
Our local homes are Brampton View and Collingtree Park in Northampton; Elm Bank and Claremont Parkway in Kettering; and Juniper House in Brackley.
For more information please contact one of our homes, or call the local Customer Relationship Manager, Andrea Newman, on 07780 829671 or [email protected]
Fantastic Fundraisers this month...
We have lots of supporters who give their time to help us. This month we thank Sydney, Pat, Dennis and Sylvia for their fundraising.  
A huge huge thank you & congratulations to Sydney Lewis. This wonderful young lady has recently made her second donation to Northants Parkinson’s People.
Sydney has been busy selling knitted owls, sweets and cakes and more recently home-made Christmas Cards.
You may remember we told you that 15-year-old Sydney's Dad Steve was diagnosed with Parkinson's a few years ago and Sydney has been raising funds for Parkinson’s charities for 4 years and recently reached her goal of an amazing £2000 in total!!
A huge thank you to Pat

Pat Pictured here with Husband Les and Grandchildren Jacob and Findley has supported us with her fantastic Christmas cards and has now expended her repertoire  to personalised cards for all occasions, please see below
Hand-Made Greeting Cards

Please take a look at these wonderfully hand-made and personalised greetings cards.  The extremely talented Pat has very kindly offered to make these to individual specifications and can add your loved one’s name, a personal greeting and verse and favourite colours can be used as well.

With changing restrictions, we are offering a postal service either to you, (envelope inside envelope) or to the recipient. The smaller cards are a bargain at £4 to include postage. The larger cards £5 to include postage.

Later in the year we will be offering a free delivery service if you order two cards or more. For now, please have a look in your diary and order a unique card for a loved one and help raise funds for Northants Parkinson’s People. Huge thanks to Pat for being a super supporter.
Order your cards via Syvlia: [email protected]
We want to send a HUGE thank you to Dennis Rooke. Dennis is a long time regular at exercise group and a good friend to everyone there and to Northants Parkinson’s People. He recently had a Birthday and set up a fund-raising page on Facebook for us.
He had a target of £150 but went well over that!!
We won’t tell you how many candles he had on the cake this year…
Here is a delightful picture of Dennis at our Parkinson’s Awareness day in 2019, he assures us he doesn’t always wear a purple wig and cowboy hat ha ha ha.
There's No Stopping Sylvia
Sylvia has supported us from day one. She's our very own 'Del Boy' selling everything from the back of her car, plants (mostly home grown by Sylva.)  Jams (mostly home grown/made by Sylvia.)  Fruit  from Sylvia's Garden.  We now hear Sylvia is commencing Marmalade production and her annual planting schedule has also started. I don't know how she finds the time for jigsaws!  Thank you Sylvia.
Poetry Corner

We have a Poem from Harry this month.
Parkinson's Lament
Festination is a vexation,
Facial freezing is as bad.
My poor mobility vexes me
And dyskinesia drives me mad!   
We have discovered we also have a regular contributor to BBC Radio Northampton in our mist - you may have heard his work already on the Annabelle Amos morning show-  Boothville Dave - here are a couple of his poems for your enjoyment...

Funny, we just know him as Dave!
A lighter view on lockdown.

We have been invited to pen a limerick
That’s five lines down and five words thick.
But too few words could make a man frown
Even Kilroy couldn’t write this down.
The state of the nation has become quite boring
I just lay in bed longer and do more snoring.
There’s not much left for us to do
But eat and drink and go to the loo.
We are asked to stay inside and don’t go out
That’s the word of the government shout.
This virus is thicker than a field full of grass
I’d normally say it’s a pain that will pass.
When lockdowns gone and things are back to normal
We will remember these days that have been so formal.
My attempt at humour is just a joke
Kilroy could have done better but his pencil broke.
It’s quite a bit bigger than a limerick
Just say nothing and read it quick.
It’s time to get up for a shower and a shave
Stay safe and well from Boothville Dave.

Read out on BBC Northampton 19 / 1 / 21

One from the early days of Covid-19
The elusive loo roll.

Good morning dear Annabel I just had to tell,
That all this panic buying is making life hell.
But my loo roll has gone it's come to an end.
Off to the shops with some money to spend.
But alas to my horror there were no loo rolls left,
I was feeling quite awkward in fact quite bereft.
None on the racking and none on the shelf,
I was feeling quite vulnerable all by myself.
As soon as they'd restocked them from the shop floor, 
With a whoosh and a bang they'd gone out the shop door.
Shopping trolleys Laden with stacks of loo paper ,
It's got past a joke it's a bit of a caper.
But perish the thought that this will last long,
Just like the Andrex Puppy we will stay strong.

From Boothville Dave 
20/03/2020 Read out on BBC Radio Northampton
Isn’t it lovely to have some new contributor’s to the Newsletter – this is just what we want – we are a community and we welcome everyone to our big happy family. If you have any talents you would like to share please do let us know.
An update on the Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Specialist Service.
You may have heard through the grapevine that Mel is retiring, well she is not leaving you may be glad to know.

Polly Carter is going to be the new team leader, she is a very experienced community nurse who has been working in the Parkinson’s Nurse team based at Isebrook for the past 12 months. She will have lots of support from all the other nurses and we know you will get on well with her.

In addition, we have Pete Smith back working part time, for those of you who have been around a long time, Pete was the original Parkinson’s Nurse in Northamptonshire, who set up the service over 20 years ago. Since leaving Northamptonshire 11 years ago he has worked in Milton Keynes and London but is very glad to be back working locally again.

So, in total we have Sharon Prendergast and Polly Carter as the team leaders and Mel , Pete, Debbie Smith and Katie Lee as the specialist nurses who are covering Northamptonshire between us all.

Because of the pandemic we are doing much less face to face work so your reviews may be telephone calls this year but we want you to be reassured that we are all working hard to support you and we will see you in person if it is needed.

And also because of the pandemic, the telephone number for ringing the nurses in Northampton has changed. We have our team administrators based in Wellingborough who are picking up all our calls and sending them on to us. They check the phone messages very frequently and we think is a better system, at least during the pandemic.

So our Northampton line now has a message asking you to ring: 01933 235850.

Meanwhile, hope you are all keeping safe and keeping up with your exercise!


Mel Smith
Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Specialist
Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
Favell House
Manfield Campus
Kettering Road
  1. The last lines of WHICH CLASSIC FILM are "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn"
  2. After the infamous "Mutiny on the Bounty " where did the mutineers settle?
  3. WHO or WHAT is a BATH OLIVER?
  4. By what NAME is MARK FELD better known?
  5. In the USA. what is "the HOOSEGOW"  a slang term for?
  6. On which STREET Is the  "Soap Opera" NEIGHBOURS set? 
  7. Where is the SEA OF TRANQUILITY?
  8. What is VEXILLOLOGY the study of?
  9. Which T.V. western series in the 1960's  was set on the SHILOH RANCH?
  10. What is a CHEONGSAM ?
           A) a  Dress  B) a Chopstick  C) a Type of dumpling in Chinese food 
Sylvia's Gardening Tips
At last, a small chink of light shows at the end of the tunnel! A few snowdrops have poked through and by the end of the month there should be a lovely display of the little white heads. Such a cheery sight in an otherwise dreary month. Snowdrops are so easy to grow but please buy them as small pot plants.
This is know as buying them ‘in the green’. They will fare much better and establish more quickly. When you do buy the plants, providing the soil is not frozen, they can be popped into the ground immediately. I planted some underneath a large hydrangea which, of course, in the winter is bare and so the snowdrops are a joy, brightening up that dark corner!
If, like me, you grow indoor hyacinths, when the flowers die off plant the bulbs outside underneath a spring or summer flowering shrub. Mine are all planted under the hydrangea and usually start flowering in March.

Sow sweet peas now for a good strong plant which can go outdoors in late spring. Fill pots with peat free compost and pop one seed into the middle of each pot. Cover the seed with a thin layer of compost (about 1cm) and water from above. Then place the pots in a cold greenhouse or sheltered spot outside. If outside it is a good idea to put a clear plastic bag over the pots for protection from frost. When the plants are around 3-4cms high carefully nip out the growing point, this will encourage the plant to produce bushy growth. I usually soak my sweet pea seeds in a glass of water overnight before planting into the pots. These are an ideal plant if you only have a patio. They can be planted in a large pot and using canes form a wigwam for the sweet peas to grow up. In actual fact I always put my sweet peas in a large pot with a copper tape band around the top as this discourages the slugs.

Keep checking the winter pansies and deadhead on a regular basis. This will lengthen the flowering period. Also check container plants to see if they need water. We get lots of rain but plants in pots or baskets dry out much more quickly, especially with the strong winds we have had of late. If they do need water try to give it mid-morning when the plants are warming up a little.

On the vegetable front I have sown some chilli seeds (they can take 3-4 weeks to germinate) and they are on the kitchen windowsill as they need warmth to germinate. More on these next month.

I have also started my first early potatoes. This is done by placing them in a box in a cool place to sprout, this is known as ‘chitting’. By the end of February there will be a bit of growth, about ½ inch long, and then I will plant the potatoes, sprouted end uppermost, in the large potato bags and I usually cover the tops of the bag with bubble wrap just for protection from any frosty weather. Hopefully the potatoes will be ready to harvest around end May beginning June. Seed potatoes can be bought at garden centres or online. Because of the covid restrictions I bought mine online this year. I was exceptionally pleased with the quality of the seed potatoes and the efficient delivery. There are many different varieties and I have tried quite a few over the past few years. This year I have selected Pentland Javelin for the first time.
Doug, our Roving Reporter Reports
from the CRT Webinar

I am beginning to feel like Ethan Hunt (you know the Tom Cruise character in Mission Impossible) as I get these jobs offered to me from time to time, by my mission control (Angela).  This latest one was a WEBINAR (on line seminar) this was sponsored by The Cure Parkinson's Trust,  This was one of their quarterly webinars and it was basically a Q&A  discussion to see if any data has shown there to be any co-relation between Covid 19 and Parkinson's. Well to re-assure you people that there is nothing as yet that shows any connection. But as you will appreciate the fact that this is a new area the matter is ongoing. 
The interesting matter is that some patients who had coronavirus/Covid 19 in advance stages, started to show symptoms of advanced Parkinsonism, when a later autopsy was carried out there was evidence to validate this. As anyone who has Parkinson's will verify there are several diseases that portray similar symptoms to Parkinson's  at different stages. There  is an ongoing study being carried out as to whether Covid 19 reacts with the many P.D. medications, so far there is no indication that it does, suffice to say "Its OK me ducks keep taking the tablets"  
I would say that this was the most open of the webinars I have attended, also that it was the first time that one of the experts actually had Parkinson's disease, this coupled with the fact that she was a mid thirties young mum with early onset P.D. Usually the "expert panel" consists of middle age males who do not have the disease. It was nice to be able ask questions, like  "is there any co-relation between coronavirus and the other epidemics of the last 30 years like "bird flu, swine flu or SARS" without being made to feel like an idiot (there isn't any co-relation between them, I only asked the question because they all started in the same area)  I find that although some of what is discussed at these gatherings is "above my pay grade" it is gratifying to find that things are being done on our behalf in trying to make sure that in these days of fast moving matters concerning our health. That we in comparison are the little guys and that someone is out there asking the question, how does this affect those who have Parkinson's.  
The CURE PARKINSON'S TRUST was set up on 2005 by the late Tom Isaacs and its mission is to challenge the view that there is no cure for Parkinson's (PD) and to find disease-modifying treatments which slow, stop or even reverse Parkinson's.

The CPT website has lots of information on its research and if you want to see the webinar that Doug attended, or any of the others then CPT has its own YOUTUBE channel where you can browse and watch them all.
QUIZ Answers
  5. A PRISON 
  7. THE MOON 
  8. FLAGS 
  10. A   DRESS 
Be Kind to Yourself.
By Angela Jeffery
Yes, this lockdown and the restrictions before are hard, I for one am ready to acknowledge that I am mostly all fed up with it, and I know you are too. Add that to the fact that the days are shorter, colder and greyer – it is hard work to remain positive BUT I just wanted to say ……. Be Kind to Yourself.

If just getting through the day, feeding yourself and staying warm is what you have achieved then that is OK. Lately, if you look on social media, (facebook, Instagram etc.) you may see stories of people ‘doing-up the whole house’ – ‘Making Mega Bucks on New Ventures’ – ‘Loosing 5 Stone and getting Super Fit’ – etc etc during these lockdown’s and restrictions. I think these stories just annoy people – they certainly do me!  Most days I get to the end of the day and think – blimey where has all that time gone? So, I am trying hard to be Kind to Myself and I think you should too.

If you are feeling a bit fed up, I would recommend putting on some happy music; tap your feet and sing along – it never fails to lift the mood, music is wonderfully therapeutic. If you are feeling a little lonely, then phone a happy friend, the one who you know can cheer you up – cheer each other up. Or google: best sitcoms/ comedy sketches/ funny jokes and have a giggle.

We will be released soon and we can return to our lives and perhaps we will appreciate the simple things a bit more …. I’m going to try….

Here are some Winnie the Poor Quotes which are borrowed from ‘allontheboard’ which is a facebook and Instagram page – the ‘boards’ are handwritten on North Greenwich tube station to bring a touch of happiness to commuters – and people who look on their social media:

We hope you enjoy them too.
  • Don’t underestimate the value of doing nothing and just getting along,
  • People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day,A little consideration and a little thought for others can make all the difference,
  • It never hurts to keep looking for sunshine anyway,
  • Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon, If the string breaks, then we try another piece of string,
  • A day without a friend is like a pot without a single drop of honey left inside,
  • Please don’t be upset, I didn’t forget, I just wasn’t remembering,
  • The things that make me different are the things that make me, me,
  • A hug is always the right size, but, sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in a heart,
  • I always get to where I’m going by walking away from where I’ve been,
  • I’m braver than I believe, stronger than I seem and I can be smart.
  • But Oh bother, there may come a day when we can’t be together; If we’re in each others dreams we can be together all the time, promise you won’t forget me ever, keep me in your heart and I’ll stay there forever.
  • Any day spent with you is my favourite day,
  • When I’m rumbly in my Tumbly I’m never afraid with you,
  • Some people care too much, I think it’s called love,
  • If we’re not there already, there’s no hurry, we shall get there someday too.
And Finally...
Handing over the And Finally spot to Doug this month.  Doug has been delving into some of life's mysteries and now has all the answers.  Phew, I'll sleep well tonight...
If the sound of rain falling or the gentle sound of a babbling brook can help you sleep, why does a single tap dripping drive you mad in the quiet of the night? I was asked this by my great grand-daughter Lexii, so I decided to find out.  
This is the best I can find. Humans like most mammals  are governed in the subconscious response of "flight or fight". So when in the quiet time late at night there is gentle rain falling, we hear the sound but in a split second the mind rejects the response and tells us all is fine and there is no threat and we gently drift away. 
But a single " PLOP" when all is quiet, our brain keeps reacting to the response, so we are waiting for the noise to repeat. Part of the problem is the way the noise is created. When the droplet hits the water already in a container (sink or bowl for example) it creates an air bubble as it  breaks the surface tension of the water, this is the "PLOP" you hear, you can stop this quite simply by putting washing up liquid in  the bowl, this changes the surface tension of the water and stops the noise. Allowing you to have a good sleep until the plumber arrives.

Well I never   

From grandad Doug
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Northants Parkinson's People is registered in England as a charitable incorporated organisation,
Registered office: 31 Winston Close, Nether Heyford, Northamptonshire. NN7 3JX
Registered charity number 1188652
Copyright © 2021 Northants Parkinson's People

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