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Archive for October, 2014

Christmas cheer heads to Dorothy Wightman Interiors

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

Dorothy’s Country Christmas’ exhibition is set to open on the 1st November 2014 at her gallery near Lupton.  The exhibition plays host to the Interior Designer’s favourite artists from across the UK and brings a little flavour of Dorothy’s home at Christmas to the gallery – making it a real festive and welcoming exhibition.

As a dedicated self-employed Interior Designer, Dorothy Wightman’s passion is her business and like many other business owners she often spends more time in her studio than at home.  However, she is a very family orientated individual and loves how Christmas brings all the family together for the many festive celebrations. This year Dorothy has brought that essence of a ‘family’ Christmas into her gallery so everyone can really get into the Christmas spirit.

Dorothy’s Country Christmas offers escapism and a tranquil place to take haven from the hustle and bustle of the shops whilst browsing and enjoying some of the fine pieces that are on display as part of the exhibition.   The focus of the exhibition is around Dorothy’s love of a traditional family Christmas and with spending so much time at work, she has brought a little of her home into the gallery with a mock-up Aga being the centrepiece of the exhibition.

Dorothy Wightman comments:

‘Christmas is a very special time and this year I wanted to bring the idea of a family Christmas into the gallery. The Country Christmas Exhibition aims to capture the nostalgic essences of celebrating Christmas in a homely atmosphere. There are some fantastic artists showcasing their work in the exhibition and we hope visitors enjoy their designs as much as we do’

The exhibition will include work of various artists from across the UK who specialise in a variety of art forms such as ceramics, glass and jewellery, which have been specially handpicked by Dorothy.   Complimentary pieces will sit alongside Dorothy’s Aga, giving the impression you’ve just stepped inside Dorothy’s home ready for the Christmas celebrations to begin.

Renowned for his high quality, skilfully executed dynamic forms and surfaces, glass artist Bob Crooks is showcasing his collection of glassware as part of the exhibition. Crooks is one Britain’s most highly recognised leading glassmakers and his pieces are very popular at the gallery.

The exhibition will feature work by ceramicist Lisa Hammond.   Her range of cookware embraces function, individuality and playfulness that has been developed and influenced from time spent in Japan.

Another artist who has been handpicked for the exhibition is Scarlett Cohen French, who will exhibit her range of contemporary Jewellery which uses enamel in experimental ways to create unique designs.

All of this festive artwork will be presented together with various other Christmas decorations and work by regular gallery artists, so be sure to head along and take a look inside ‘Dorothy’s Country Christmas’ exhibition at Dorothy Wightman Interiors.

The Oaklea Trust celebrate success

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Team members from the Oaklea Trust based in Lancashire have been presented with a ‘Celebration of Success award’ from GP Strategies Training Limited in recognition of their outstanding employee development and training investment.

The Oaklea Trust, who are based in Kendal, has been supporting disadvantagd people and those with disabilities for over 20 years throughout Cumrbia and Lancashire.  Their vision is based on the principle that every person has a positive contribution to make to society and the right to control their own lives.  The Oaklea Trust supports customers with learning disabilities in their own homes in the Blackpool and Fylde areas working closely with Mencap as the local landlord.

Several members of the Lancashire team have recently undertaken additional training through GP Strategies Training Limited who is dedicated to offering quality-assured training services to people who work in a variety of sectors, including the health and social care industry.  The Oaklea team undertook a free Diploma in Health & Social Care along with Team Leading & Management as part of their social care commitment.

The Oaklea Trust was up against some stiff competition from numerous other high performing nominations.

Anita Dale, Regional Delivery Team Manager for the Lancashire region of GP Strategies Training Limited said,

“My assessor, Jaimie Thompson nominated the Oaklea Trust, taking on board their outstanding development and dedication to provide training opportunities to their staff.  They certainly impressed our panel and we were pleased to announce them as a winner”

Anita and Jaimie Thompson visited the Oaklea team in Blackpool to present the charity with a framed Celebration of Success Certificate. The award was received on behalf of Oaklea Trust by Jeanette McVittie (local Team Manager) who said,

“The Oaklea Trust in Blackpool is very pleased to accept this award. As a team, we would not have completed our course work if it was not for the help, support and guidance from our assessor Jaimie Thompson.  Most of us would have thrown the towel in, if it had not have been for Jaimie’s encouragement and the fact she believed in all of us.”

Jeanette McVittie has been Team Manager since April 2013 and has been working hard to support her team to ensure that the customers receive the highest quality of care and support.  All this hard work has paid off and now has been recognized externally too.

A number of successful apprentice learners were also presented with their training certificates, awards and diplomas for achieving their qualifications.

The Oaklea Trust’s gift to the elderly this winter

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

As the seasons change and the heating is turned on in many homes The Oaklea Trust, a charitable organisation, based in Cumbria who offer support to disabled and disadvantaged people are giving  people in South Lakeland and Furness the opportunity to apply for their ‘Wishlist’ grant alongside the Winter Warmth Fund initiative.

The aim of Wishlist is to raise and distribute funds in support of disabled and disadvantaged children and adults. The criteria for applications changes each year so that The Oaklea Trust can ensure they are able to support a wide and diverse range of the local community.  At the present time the maximum grant available is £500 and is for people aged 75 years and over or their carers, living within the South Lakeland and Furness areas of Cumbria, to fund opportunities to:

  1. Reduce the impact of isolation and loneliness and/or
  2. Promote independence and quality of life including improvements to living environments.

Many people who are eligible to apply for a Wishlist grant are also those who may benefit from the Winter Warmth Fund run by Cumbria Community Foundation.

The Winter Warmth Fund is an initiative run by Cumbria Community Foundation to help older people in Cumbria stay warm and healthy.  It is funded by voluntary donations of winter fuel allowance payments plus individual and local business donations.  This is another initiative whereby people over 60, who live in Cumbria, can apply for grants from £125 to £250 to help them maintain an acceptable standard of living during the winter.

There are many inter-related factors which will influence how each individual is affected by the cold weather, including their income, housing type and quality, cost of fuel, isolation and underlying health conditions. Each individual’s response to the cold can vary.  Some may heat their home more but buy less food. Others will cut back on their heating and social contact.  Any of these actions could be detrimental to their well-being at a time when they could be at their most vulnerable.

The aim of the Winter Warmth fund is to ensure that people who struggle with the cost of winter can survive with a reasonable level of comfort and dignity. The grantee does not have to say what they will spend the grant on specifically, but that the overall effect will be that they can afford to keep warm and look after themselves during the coldest weather.

Services such as hot water and heating are often taken for granted for many, but for older people living in Cumbria, this is often not an option and regularly have to choose between eating and heating.  This puts them at risk and they are often in danger of becoming seriously ill or dying.  Many people die each year in Cumbria as a result of plummeting temperatures and not being able to afford to pay for hefty energy bills.

Sue Green, Director of the Oaklea Trust comments,

“Older people are often isolated when the winter hits, feeling lonely, unable to get to the local shop, or heat their home.  We encourage everyone to think about those elderly people living nearby and if they need support over the winter months; are there any improvements to their home or any ways in which they could benefit from support that could make a different to their lives?  We have a pot of funding that could really help to save lives and urge people to get in touch to find out more.”

If you know people who are vulnerable as we approach winter please let them know about Wishlist and Winter Warmth Funds and how the Oaklea Trust can help.  With the variety of grant funding and winter initiatives on offer there is no reason why any elderly person should suffer this winter.

The Oaklea Trust signs up to Social Care Commitment

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

The Oaklea Trust,  who have employees throughout Eden that help disabled and disadvantaged people, have recently signed up to the Social Care Commitment, which is a voluntary agreement about workforce quality.

The Social Care Commitment’s primary purpose is to ensure public confidence that people who need care and support services across the UK, including Eden, will always be supported by skilled people who treat them with dignity and respect.  As part of this commitment the Oaklea Trust promises to give their workers in and around Eden the development they need and staff promise to put social care values into practice in their daily work.  Team members in Eden have been enrolled on specific training courses above and beyond the minimum requirements of the commitment, including Dementia Awareness Facilitator Training (University of Stirling) and diplomas in Leadership for Health & Social Care and Children and Young People’s Services (Levels 2 -5)

Minister of State for Care and Support Norman Lamb has again reiterated his, and the Department of Health’s full support, for the Social Care Commitment “encouraging every employer and every employee” working in adult social care to sign up.

By signing up, The Oaklea Trust’s team in Eden and throughout Cumbria will adhere to seven clear commitments designed to help develop the skills and knowledge of their workforce. They focus on real workplace issues including effective communication, upholding dignity and protecting privacy.

“It is really important for people to have reliable information about what good care looks like so they can make the right choices about the care they want. This commitment from employers and staff will help foster a more open, transparent system that leaves bad care with nowhere to hide and will lead to better standards across the board.”

The commitment’s development has been led by Skills for Care, working with employers, employees, individual employers, personal assistants and people who need care and support to make sure the commitment is fit for purpose and can be easily embedded into sector workforces.

Director of the Oaklea Trust Sue Green comments,

 “We see this as a real commitment to help us continually think about how to improve the care and support we provide. The relationship between us as an employer and our employee/volunteer is directly linked to the relationship that our employees/volunteers have with each customer”

The commitment is strongly supported by sector leaders including the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) and the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Bill Mumford, Chair of the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group, said: “I am fond of saying: ‘people experience our behaviours not our values’, i.e. actions speak louder than words.  This is why I am particularly keen to support the launch of the Social Care Commitment and will be encouraging employers and social care workers across the sector to sign up.  With so much public concern it will be an opportunity for individuals and their loved ones to check on-line who has signed up and be reassured that the commitment is to them.”

The Oaklea Trust are also now looking for more employees to strengthen their team and encourage more people to join in their campaign for high quality care for the elderly, disabled and disadvantaged people.

2 weeks left to see ‘Magic and Timeless’

Friday, October 10th, 2014

Members of the public will have their last chance to see a dog in wellies, a pig in lipstick, hedgehogs, robins and a gigantic sunflower in the exhibition Magic and Timeless, which will be closing on the 31st October, at the gallery at Dorothy Wightman Interiors in Lupton.

The exhibition which opened in September showcases the work of one of Dorothy Wightman’s most popular artists, Laurance Simon.  The exhibition has been warmly received by visitors to the gallery who have commented on the witty pieces on display from the French born ceramicist.

The exhibition is bursting with striking, colourful ceramics that will brighten any home during the winter months.  Key pieces include detailed candlesticks, small dishes topped with woodland creatures and the popular ‘pig with lipstick’, which has been a real talking point.    Each piece unique and beautifully decorated and might solve that difficult problem of what to give for Christmas

The Gallery often features work by Simon, but this is her first solo exhibition.   She was born in France, though has lived in London for over year 20 years.

Dorothy Wightman comments,

“Magic and Timeless has been a pleasure to have at the Gallery.  Not only has it filled our showroom with colour but has been very popular with our customers, who have loved the comedy of some of the ceramics in the collection.  There are not many places you can see a dog on roller skates and people have really engaged with a more light-hearted exhibition, which we have loved being part of.”

Magic and Timeless closes on the 31st October and will be replaced with Dorothy’s Christmas exhibition on the 1st November.

Best Young Dentist nomination for Penrith Practice

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

Stricklandgate Dental Practice is delighted to announce that Dr Satya Patel has been shortlisted as Best Young Dentist in the prestigious Dentistry Awards for the second year running.

The awards, hosted by ‘Dentistry Magazine’ are the most anticipated award ceremony in the dental calendar, rewarding and recognising regional excellence in dentistry.  The awards recognise outstanding individuals and teams who are at the top of their profession and who are continually raising the standards of general dentistry.

Organisers commented that;

“This year the competition was tougher than ever and the judges have been resoundingly impressed and inspired by the quality of entries – you and your team have done supremely well to have come this far!”

To be shortlisted for this award Satya had to demonstrate his hard work and drive for dentistry, show achievements in his career to date and how he is different to other young dentists.  Not only had he to show the uniqueness of Stricklandgate Dental practice, but also demonstrate how they go beyond the regular duty of care and connect with the local community.

Satya, who bought Stricklandgate Dental Practice in 2012, is up against 14 other finalists from the West of the UK.

Satya comments,

“I am delighted to have been shortlisted in the awards for the second year running.  I try to do things a little differently and give my patients the best possible experience of visiting a Dentist.  I have worked so hard to ensure my Practice is the best and we’re well on the way to becoming one of the best practices in the UK and it is fantastic the judges have recognised this achievement.”

The awards feature an esteemed panel of expert judges from the industry.  The winners will be announced in a glamorous ceremony in London in November.