Welcome to Thomas Pocklington Trust’s website

Author: Sarah Anderson


East London Vision to benefit from Co-op Local Community Fund

PEOPLE can help East London Vision run an art project for visually impaired people by shopping at a Co-op store. East London Vision (ELVis) has been selected to receive funding from this year’s Co-op Local Community Fund. ELVis is a charity which aims to ensure that vision impaired people living in east London get the support and services they need. Co-op members can choose ELVis as their local cause and every time they buy a Co-op branded product or service and use their Co-op membership card, one per cent of what they spend will be donated to ELVis. Masuma Ali,...

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CEO Blog October

We have had much to celebrate at Pocklington in the last month! I am very proud that our London Employment Programme Pilot ‘Works for Me’ won VISION 2020 UK’s Astbury Award 2016 – an award given in recognition of work that fosters excellence in collaboration within the eye health and sight loss sectors. The pilot programme, which was headed up by TPT’s Employment Team, Alexa Sage, Martin Sigsworth and Charlie Coyle, collaborated with businesses, charities and individual professionals which gave it access to resources far beyond its own capacity. Employment is a major area of focus for us that...

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BBC video shows that tennis is an accessible sport for everyone

Many blind and partially sighted people think they can’t play sport. But there are a lot of people proving this idea wrong. The BBC has filmed a Get Inspired video on blind and partially sighted tennis players. The video shows that anyone with visual impairment can play tennis, despite what many people believe. It shows people talking about how they didn’t think they could play and were happy they could. Monica Smith never got into sport until later in life because she thought “I can’t see so I can’t do anything.” Ekinath Khedekar said it was liberating to play “because...

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People urged to get their eyes tested as part of National Eye Health Week

People need to get their eyes tested regularly to protect their eye health. That is the message that has been put out this week during National Eye Health Week (September 19-25). It comes as a new report, the Generation Eye Report, has found that almost 14 million people in the UK are putting their eyesight at risk by not having an eye test at least every two years, as recommended. This is despite 55 per cent of people saying deteriorating vision is their biggest worry about getting older. The research, based on a survey of more than 2000 UK...

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Thomas Pocklington Trust’s London Employment Programme wins award 🗺

THOMAS Pocklington Trust’s London Employment Programme Pilot ‘Works for Me’ has won VISION 2020 UK’s Astbury Award 2016. The employment programme, which was headed up by Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT’s)  Employment Team,  Alexa Sage, Martin Sigsworth and Charlie Coyle, was announced as the winner of the Astbury Award 2016 at a ceremony in London yesterday (Monday, September 19). The award, named after former VISION 2020 UK Chair and inaugural recipient Nick Astbury, is given in recognition of work that fosters excellence in collaboration within the eye health and sight loss sectors. TPT, a national sight loss charity, established ‘Works for Me’ to support more visually impaired people to gain and retain employment, and to prevent people with existing employment from losing their jobs due to sight loss. It has had a strong success rate of almost 40 per cent. The pilot collaborated with businesses, charities and individual professionals which gave it access to resources far beyond its own capacity including event space, expertise, volunteering hours, professional networks and peer support, all of which contributed to the staggering employment outcomes. Going forward, Visionary has developed Guiding Principles based on an evaluation, by NCVO’s Charities Evaluation Services, of the pilot programme to share the learning to support other organisations in the sector in delivering employment services to blind and partially sighted people. Alexa Sage, who managed the TPT Employment Programme Pilot,...

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Thomas Pocklington Trust’s London Employment Programme wins award

THOMAS Pocklington Trust’s London Employment Programme Pilot ‘Works for Me’ has won VISION 2020 UK’s Astbury Award 2016. The Employment Programme, which was headed up by Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT’s) Employment Team,  Alexa Sage, Martin Sigsworth and Charlie Coyle, was announced as the winner of the Astbury Award 2016 at a ceremony in London yesterday (Monday, September 19). The award, named after former VISION 2020 UK Chair and inaugural recipient Nick Astbury, is given in recognition of work that fosters excellence in collaboration within the eye health and sight loss sectors. TPT, a national sight loss charity, established ‘Works...

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Vision impaired bowls launched in East London

THE first vision impaired bowls season in East London was launched this year. East London Vision, in conjunction with Metro Blind Sport, Walthamstow Borough Bowling Club (WBBC) and Motivate East, ran the first ever vision impaired bowls season at WBBC. The season, which came after a trial in 2015, included 10 free sessions for anyone with sight loss living in East London and the surrounding areas and had 21 participants. Thomas Pocklington Trust project coordinator Hassan Khan said lawn bowls was the largest outdoor activity for blind people in the world, with 5000 blind and partially sighted members of the...

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British surgeons perform the first robotic eye surgery

A ROBOT has been used by surgeons to operate inside the eye and restore vision in a world first. A team at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital used the robot, controlled by a joystick, to remove a membrane one hundredth of a millimetre thick from the retina at the back of the right eye of a patient. Surgeons hope the procedure will pave the way for more complex eye surgery than is currently possible with the human hand. The Reverend Dr William Beaver, 70, an Associate Priest at St Mary the Virgin, Iffley, Oxford was the first patient to undergo...

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Awards celebrate collaboration in eye health and sight loss sector

THE shortlist for VISION 2020 UK’s Astbury Award has been announced and Thomas Pocklington Trust staff and programmes have made the list. The award, named after former VISION 2020 UK Chair and inaugural recipient Nick Astbury, is given in recognition of work that fosters excellence in collaboration within the eye health and sight loss sectors. TPT Projects Director London Cathy Low has been shortlisted for TPT’s London Vision Strategy (LVS) Programme. The programme delivers Vision Strategies across all 32 London boroughs to benefit people with sight loss and promote the importance of eye health and prevention, and engaged with 650...

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Vision impaired athletes to compete in Rio Paralympics

THE Paralympic Games open in Rio tonight. Great Britain is sending a 264-strong team – including guides, pilots and competition partners – to compete in 19 of the 22 Paralympic sports on offer in Rio. The team, including 17 vision impaired athletes, will be striving towards UK Sport’s target of 121 medals – one more than London 2012. Paralympics GB has confirmed that Lee Pearson CBE, will carry the flag for Great Britain in the Opening Ceremony in Rio tonight (Wednesday, September 7). Over the next 11 days you can follow and celebrate the ParalympicsGB team in their incredible...

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CEO Blog September

This last month has been an exciting and busy one here at Thomas Pocklington Trust! We have moved into our new head office – The Pocklington Hub – at Tavistock House in London. We packed up our temporary office at CAN Mezzanine, which graciously housed us since a fire broke out at Pier House, our previous central office in London, in February and moved into the Pocklington Hub last month. We are very happy to have our new permanent home and look forward to sharing this wonderful space with everyone in the Eye Health and Sight Loss sector. The...

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Fashion show to raise money to support people with sight loss

PEOPLE living with sight loss in Sutton will receive a boost from a fashion show being held. AmandaLadies Fashions in Ashtead is hosting a Charity Fashion Show with all of the proceeds from the event going to Sutton Vision. Sutton Vision delivers services to residents of the London Borough of Sutton who are blind or partially sighted to help them be independent and active citizens in the community and boost their self esteem. The services it delivers include early intervention support at St Helier Hospital, Low Vision Clinic, a resource centre, social activities, awareness training and providing information and...

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Video with insight into interacting with visually impaired people

IT’S not uncommon for people who don’t interact with visually impaired people regularly to commit faux pas such as grabbing a visually impaired person’s arm without warning or talking to the person they’re with instead of them. We have come across a video by YouTuber and Fashioneyesta blogger Emily Davison which aims to give people an insight into the world of someone with sight loss and how to interact with them. At the start of the video, The Things You Should Not Say or Do to a Visually Impaired Person, Emily, 21, says the video will tell people about...

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New code to help blind people identify ambulance crews

BLIND and partially sighted patients will be able to identify ambulance crews more easily after a new scheme was launched this month, The London Ambulance Service (LAS) has adopted a safer process in which blind and partially sighted patients can verify the identity of ambulance crews through a re-contact call with the emergency operations centre. Ambulance crews will provide patients who question their identity with a unique code which the patient can then verify over the phone. The scheme was developed by the LAS, which consulted with staff, patient focus groups and the Royal National Institute of Blind People...

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Project to help East London Vision service users get active

EAST London Vision has been involved in a pilot project to help older people get active. The local sight loss charity ran one of 16 pilot projects taking place as part of Get Moving – a project funded by the London Mayor’s office to help older adults be more active. East London Vision (ELVis) ran sports sessions, including yoga, gentle chair based exercise, park walks and dance, over eight weeks for its members after it received a grant from Get Moving. ELVis Activities Co-ordinator Bhavini Makwana, who attended each session, said it had been a successful program with great...

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Free health, wellbeing and sports taster sessions

PEOPLE can try vision impaired sports for free at London Metropolitan University during National Eye Health Week. Metro Blind Sport, Islington Council and Thomas Pocklington Trust are hosting a free half day of health, wellbeing and fitness activities for vision impaired people on Saturday, September 17. People can take part in taster sessions of activities including sound ball tennis, dance and movement, adapted boccia, spinning, walking, football and gym at the Islington Health, Wellbeing and Fitness Day at London Metropolitan University. Thomas Pocklington Trust Project Coordinator Leah Boylan said there was an exciting and varied program planned to cater to...

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Cooking course for East London Vision service users

EAST London Vision has run cooking courses to give blind and partially sighted people the skills and confidence needed to cook healthy meals. Sixteen service users participated in the six week beginner and advanced cooking courses, which were run in conjunction with Made In Hackney as part of East London Vision (ELVis’) Healthy Body Healthy Mind project, from June to August. The course helped participants gain the confidence needed to use cooking equipment such as knives and hot saucepans in a safe environment and helped people discover that they were still able to prepare fresh meals despite their sight...

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Athletics helped former Commonwealth Games competitor deal with her sight loss

Guest Blog by former Commonwealth Games competitor Selina Litt. Find her blog page Insight Out here There’s no way of sugar coating it, losing your sight is tough. It’s not fair. You ask ‘why me’?! I have a rare genetic eye condition called Norrie’s Disease, which is only meant to affect males, but guess what I defied the odds and was the first female in the world to be diagnosed with the condition. Lucky me! In a sense I am lucky though. I am glad that I had the opportunity to see.  It has nearly been ten years since I have...

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Accessible editions of new Harry Potter script book created

BLIND and partially sighted people can enjoy the magic of the latest Harry Potter instalment with accessible editions created. The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has teamed up with publisher Little, Brown to make Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I and II script book accessible to people with sight loss. RNIB has created a braille edition and a giant print edition, both of which went on sale on August 1. A talking book version will also be slytherin’ onto the shelves “very soon”. The Special Rehearsal edition of the play Harry Potter and the...

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Registrations have opened for the Visionary Conference 2016

Visionary has opened registrations to its annual conference this year – open to all in the sight loss sector. The Visionary Conference 2016 will be held at the Aston Conference Centre in Birmingham on October 20-21. The conference theme – Sharing success, making a difference – will be reflected throughout the conference where local sight loss charities, national charity partners and other professionals will have networking and learning opportunities. There are some fantastic examples of service delivery happening among the Visionary membership, despite the challenges that members are facing particularly with funding levels being reduced or cut, and these...

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CEO Blog August

Some people might know about Investors in People – it’s an assessment framework which reflects the best practices in high performance working. I am delighted to announce that Thomas Pocklington Trust successfully completed its IIP assessment in July and we have achieved a Bronze standard! It’s a real testimony to the whole organisation – everybody has played a role in this. As an organisation we continually strive to have high people management standards which in turn help us achieve our main purpose – to improve the lives of people with sight loss. On another positive note, I am pleased...

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Post Office launches talking cash machines

IT WILL be easier for blind and partially sighted people to withdraw cash from ATMs when the Post Office rolls out talking cash machines. The Post Office is launching talking cash machines for blind and partially sighted customers as part of an upgrade to its ATM network. The speech enabled machines will allow customers to plug earphones into the machines and be verbally guided through their transactions. They will input their PIN and select the service they require using a numeric option on the keypad. The introduction of talking cash machines follows the Make Money Talk campaign by the...

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New eye care framework to ensure faster treatment for patients

A NEW cross-sector initiative will see more people treated by eye health services in the community to reduce the risk of people losing their sight due to hospital delays and cancelled follow up appointments. The Clinical Council for Eye Health Commissioning (CCEHC), which represents the major charity, clinical and provider organisations in the eye health and sight loss sector, launched a new Primary Eye Care Framework this month. The Framework is designed to help commissioners reduce hospital capacity issues in their area by delivering support services in the primary care setting. The framework states it will minimise unnecessary referrals...

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New documentary based on a man’s audio diary about his sight loss

THE audio diary of a man who lost his sight has been turned into a documentary. John Hull lost his sight in the 1980s and kept an audio diary of his experience of sight loss, from the grief he felt through to his acceptance. John, a theologian from Birmingham, recorded more than 16 hours of material over three years to help him cope with and understand his sight loss. The diaries were first published in 1990 in a book titled Touching the Rock and have now been turned into the documentary Notes on Blindness. The documentary uses original recordings...

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South East London Vision shortlisted for Charity Times Award

SOUTH East London Vision is a finalist in the Charity Times Awards. SELVis, a local sight loss charity, has been shortlisted for the Best New Charity category. The awards, run by Charity Times Magazine, celebrate best practice in the UK charity and non-profit sector. SELVis was established in 2014 to ensure blind and partially sighted people living in Bromley, Bexley, Greenwich, Lewisham, Lambeth and Southwark can live independently and receive high quality services relevant to their needs. The organisation works to improve quality of life and increase independence, well being and self-determination of every person they support through the...

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Sight loss community influences services in Greenwich

People living with sight loss and visual impairment from across Greenwich came together to explore how local services could improve their lives for the better. The packed event, hosted jointly by South East London Vision (SELVis) and Greenwich Council’s Adult Social Care team, was also attended by the Mayor for the Royal Borough of Greenwich, Olu Babatola, who gave an encouraging and warm introduction to the room. The atmosphere was positive throughout the meeting, which involved facilitated discussion sessions where small groups had focussed conversations about their experiences of local services. A key theme was the important role of...

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Artificial technology used to detect eye disease in new study

A NEW research project to train artificial technology to detect signs of eye disease is expected to increase early detection and prevention of eye diseases. Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Trust is teaming up with Google’s Artificial Intelligence division DeepMind to investigate how machine learning technology can help to better analyse digital scans of the eye, giving eye care professionals a better and faster understanding of eye disease. The research project will see one million anonymous digital eye scans from Moorfields Eye Hospital – that can’t be traced to a specific person – analysed for subtle early warning signs of...

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CEO Blog July 🗺

I’m sure you are all fed up of hearing about Brexit, but people keep asking me if I think it is going to have an impact on Pocklington. Well the short answer is, no I don’t. Fortunately we have been able to arrange our financial affairs in a way that enables us to take a long term view and we are not exposed to short term market volatility. Much more interestingly, I have been to two fun events recently that I would like to share with you. Firstly, I went to a reception at 10 Downing Street for RP...

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Volunteer dedicated to helping people with sight loss wins award from Prime Minister

BHAVINI Makwana has won an award from the Prime Minister for her dedication to helping others with the degenerative eye disease Retinitis Pigmentosa. Bhavini, the Activities Co-ordinator at East London Vision, was presented with the Points of Light award by Samantha Cameron, on behalf of her husband Prime Minister David Cameron, at a reception held at 10 Downing Street on Tuesday night. The Points of Light award is an award from the Prime Minister which recognises outstanding individual volunteers who are making a change in their community. Bhavini was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) 19 years ago and has...

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