Welcome to Thomas Pocklington Trust’s website

Author: Sarah Anderson


As many of you know I’m a firm believer in collaboration and the power it can have to make a difference. I’m very pleased that VISION 2020 UK as an organisation is putting together a new strategy document that encourages the collaboration of all of its members and seeks to describe how, by all working together, we can achieve something where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The draft strategy includes key roles for all of the large, medium and small organisations across the Eye Health and Sight Loss sector. It puts the prevention, alleviation...

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Smart phone app assist-Mi aims to revolutionise the lives of disabled people

AN INNOVATIVE communications and assistance tool aims to give disabled users on the go greater independence when accessing every day services. Assist-Mi is a smart phone app which provides a combination of location-based technologies and two-way messaging to enable a user to get the assistance they need when visiting a service provider. The app is the brainchild of co-founder and CEO Gary McFarlane who came up with the concept in 2004 when he was working in the mobile technology sector, specialising in assistive technology to improve and make mobiles and websites more accessible for disabled users. Gary, who has...

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Deloitte has volunteering day with Thomas Pocklington Trust

VOLUNTEERS are important to help people with sight loss maintain their independence and have active lives. We were lucky enough to have a group of volunteers from Deloitte, an accountancy and consultancy firm, partner with Thomas Pocklington Trust to hold a Volunteering Day recently. TPT volunteer coordinator Kirsty Palmer said ten volunteers from Deloitte undertook a two-hour information and training session to learn how to support people with sight loss appropriately and safely. She said the interactive session included vision awareness, guide training, safeguarding and professional boundaries training. The volunteers then put the skills they had learnt into practice...

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Talking News Islington celebrates 100 recordings

TALKING News Islington has celebrated the major milestone of 100 recordings. The talking newspaper, started in September 2007, is a monthly audio newspaper for visually impaired people in the borough of Islington. It is led by its founder Elizabeth Jones, 88, who runs it out of her home for its 170 listeners. About 50 people including volunteers and listeners attended an event on Wednesday, May 25 to celebrate the 100th recording. The Mayor of Islington, Kat Fletcher, was among the attendees and thanked Elizabeth and the volunteers for all of their hard work. Each month 35-40 tracks including news...

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Metro Blind Sport introduces tennis to Ireland

METRO Blind Sport has continued to serve up aces on its mission to introduce blind tennis to more countries. Metro Blind Sport Chair Amanda Green and its Tennis Committee Chair Odette Battarell travelled to Dublin, Ireland on the weekend to hold blind tennis workshops at Vision Sports Ireland’s MayFest – a sports festival for vision impaired people and friends. It comes after the duo, both former blind tennis champions, travelled to Germany earlier this month to introduce the sport, which was developed in Japan more than 30 years ago. Tennis Ireland invited Odette and Amanda to attend MayFest to...

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Future-proof your products: smart design and smart appliances for consumers with sight loss and older people

Inclusive design and smart technology for household appliances have the potential to boost the independence of older people and those with sight loss and other disabilities, new research suggests. Two new reports, Inclusive Design – expert views and Smart Appliances and the Internet of Things, released today by consumer research charity Rica and sight loss charity Thomas Pocklington Trust, call attention to the need for inclusive products – those that are useable by the widest range of people. With an eye on future trends, the studies also highlight the potential benefits of emerging smart technology for older and disabled...

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ELVis CEO Roger Clifton shortlisted for Pioneer Vision Award

EAST London Vision CEO Roger Clifton is a finalist in the Pioneer Vision Awards. Roger has been shortlisted in the Professional of the Year (Adults) category for the awards being presented by the UK Vision Strategy. The Vision Pioneer Awards are dedicated to celebrating excellence in the eye health and sight loss sectors. Roger was nominated by the chair, board of trustees and staff at East London Vision (ELVis) for the work he has done leading, guiding and growing ELVis. Roger said it was an honour to have been nominated and shortlisted but he didn’t do his work for...

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Ryan Jones’ London Marathon success

On a rather chilly Sunday morning on 24 April, Ryan Jones, ELVis’ vision impaired London Marathon runner, put his running shoes on and placed his many months of dedicated training in to practice when he took on the huge challenge of running the 26.2 miles for the London Marathon to raise funds for ELVis. The ELVis support team were ready and geared up to cheer Ryan on at Tower Bridge in their ELVis t-shirts and blue painted eyes on their cheeks. Thanks to Paresh our handy artist on the day. The team spent the time before the race promoting...

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Metro Blind Sport has tennis success in Germany

Metro Blind Sport has made history by launching blind tennis in Germany. Metro Blind Sport Chair Amanda Green and its Tennis Committee Chair Odette Battarel held the German Blind Tennis workshop in Cologne from April 29 to May 1 – the first time blind tennis had been played in Germany. The workshop was organised by Deutscher Blinden-und Sehbehindertenverband e.V. (DBSV), the German Blind and Visually Impaired Association, and the Gold-Kraemer-Foundation’s Tennis for All project. Pocklington Voice followed up with Odette about how the workshop went after we spoke to her last month ahead of the trip. Odette, SELVis Project...

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Pocklington attends Facebook Global Causes Day

THOMAS Pocklington Trust representatives were lucky enough to go behind closed doors at the headquarters of the most used social media platform in the world last week. Facebook invited us to a Facebook Masterclass as part of its Global Causes Day – a day where its employees down tools and come together around causes they care about – on Thursday, April 28. Facebook’s London team partnered with Media Trust to show charities how Facebook could be used to maximise their audience reach and meet their objectives. Facebook’s UK Managing Director Steve Hatch gave out rare data which revealed that...

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Gene therapy provides hope

A PIONEERING gene therapy is giving hope to people with common forms of blindness including macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. A clinical study by University of Oxford researchers has found gene therapy has restored some vision to patients who were going blind for as long as four years. The therapy, which involves injecting a virus into the eye to help cells regenerate, has been trialled on six people with the rare disorder choroideremia at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital. The gene therapy was designed to slow or stop sight loss but the results, published in the New England Journal of...

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I hope you all enjoyed the bank holiday and are feeling refreshed. I want to share with you a significant milestone we hit with the England Vision Strategy (EVS) just last week. I am proud to say we have held a regional event in each of the 12 regions we established in the last 12 months. Over 400 people have attended the regional events which have brought together members from across the whole of the Eye Health and Sight Loss sector. I’m proud of the way the network has enabled key stakeholders to discuss what services need to be...

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Introducing blind tennis to Germany

METRO Blind Sport will serve up an ace when it introduces blind tennis into Germany. Metro Blind Sport Chair Amanda Green and its Tennis Committee Chair Odette Battarel are travelling to Cologne this weekend to hold a blind tennis workshop for Deutscher Blinden-und Sehbehindertenverband e.V. (DBSV), the German Blind and Visually Impaired Association. Blind Tennis was developed in Japan by a man named Takei Miyoshi more than 30 years ago but it still hasn’t hit many countries, including Germany, around the world. Odette, SELVis Project Development Manager, said blind tennis, which was also known as Soundball Tennis, was played...

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Find a running guide database launched

ADULTS with vision impairment will be able to get active more easily after British Blind Sport and England Athletics launched Find a Guide, a national guide runner database. The database is an online tool for anyone aged over 18 with a visual impairment to help them find a licenced running guide – someone who has been DBS checked and attended an England Athletics Sight Loss Awareness and Guide Running workshop – in their local area. The launch of Find a Guide is part of a national push by the British Blind Sport and England Athletics to support more visually...

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Social media now using alternative text for images

THEY say a picture speaks a thousand words. Now pictures on Facebook and Twitter can speak to people who have vision impairment. The social media companies have launched new technologies so people with sight loss can be included in the photo sharing trend that has swept the world. According to Facebook, people share more than two billion photos across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp every day. But with almost two million people in the UK living with some form of sight loss, many people may feel excluded from the conversation around photos. Facebook, whose daily login rate has risen...

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Ryan Jones to run London Marathon for East London Vision

Ryan Jones will be running to help people with sight loss when he takes on the London Marathon this weekend. Ryan, who has vision impairment, is running the 26 miles from Blackheath and Greenwich Park to St James Park on Sunday, April 24 in support of East London Vision (ELVis). ELVis aims to improve access to support and services for people with sight loss living in the seven boroughs of East London to improve their quality of life and increase individual independence. Ryan has already raised more than £1000 of the £2000 he hopes to raise for ELVis. It’s...

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Looking After Your Sight

Many of us take our senses for granted without fully appreciating what an intrinsic part they play in our day-to-day lives. Being able to see the world around us is a wonderful gift, which when taken away or affected – especially when we least expect it – can change life dramatically. Social studies have shown that sight is the sense that people would find the most difficult to lose – and indeed adapt to life without – followed closely by hearing. To experience a visual impairment can be shocking, upsetting, and ultimately disruptive to life in general – Thomas Pocklington...

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