Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Alok Sharma opens BMSTC Christmas Fayre

Alok opening the Christmas Fayre with Sam Butlin, Ingela Sharma, Sheila Booth, Trish Wright, Penny Russel and Glynis WilksAlok Sharma, Member of Parliament for Reading West, was invited to open the Berkshire Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Therapy Centre’s Christmas Fayre on Saturday 19th November. The event was entirely organised by the members of Centre, who all suffer from MS, a degenerative disease for which there is no known cure.   See the press release on his website here

Monday, 28 November 2011

Agreement signed for Brambles Respite Care Centre

Source MS Society:

"The MS Society has signed an initial agreement to transfer Brambles Respite Care Centre to a new provider, possibly preventing it from closure.
Following a revised offer from the company previously interested in taking over the centre, MS Respite & Care Services Ltd, ‘Heads of Terms’ have been signed to transfer the centre into their ownership."


Fantastic news!  For more click here

Vote for BMSTC in the Great Exhibition 2012!

"The Great Exhibition 2012 would love to work with the The Berkshire Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre in helping to promote all the great work you do for people suffering with the condition.  The aim of the Great Exhibition 2012 is to celebrate everything that is Great about Britain, and the charity work that takes place in the country is very important.  You are up as a Great on the website, and we want you to get as many votes as possible for the Great.  Here is the link for the profile which you should feel free to send to as many people as possible! http://www.thegreatexhibition2012.co.uk/greats/berkshire-multiple-sclerosis-therapy-centre

Not only this, but we would like to propose that when you reach 500 votes our CEO Julie Benson will come down the centre for half a day and volunteer.  We would also make a film to show all hard work that the centre does which will be put on your profile to show people our experience of volunteering at the centre.  This will enhance the profile of the Great, show people what you do, encourage people to make donations to the charity and visit your website."

For more information on the Great Exhibition 2012 see website: http://www.thegreatexhibition2012.co.uk/about-the-great-exhibition

Two MS patients in their 30's talk about the challenges of "Coming Out" with MS



Source the BBC: - Listen again http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b017lbqh

Five programmes exploring the ways in which we decide how far to be honest about ourselves, and in doing so become vulnerable to the judgements of others.

2. Cathy, Andrew and Emily

Multiple Sclerosis is most often diagnosed in people aged between 20 and 40, a time when careers and relationships are of primary importance. Two MS patients in their 30s talk about the challenges of coming out with the disease, and how far to be totally open about it.  This Sunday 27th November, BBC Radio 4 at 2.45 pm..  For more click here

This year the Christmas Spirit has found 3 local bands. Each of them have decided to help local charity the

This year the Christmas Spirit has found 3 local bands. Each of them have decided to help BMSTC!

On December 3rd , the Reading Spring Gardens Brass Band are giving a concert at Park United Reform Church 19:30-21:30. Proceeds from the raffle at the concert will go to the BMSTC.

 On Dec 13th, Breakaway Brass will be playing carols to entertain the public in Broad Street from 18:00, whilst members from the centre collect.

 On Dec 16th, the clarinet group from Trinity Concert Band will be playing at the Centre to entertain members at their Christmas Party and on Dec 20th the band will be playing carols in Broad Street from 18:00. Trinity’s Christmas Concerts are on Dec 17th  at Bearwood College Theatre Sindlesham.

 The BMSTC is grateful to these musical groups for sharing the Christmas Spirit with us. If you enjoy music, especially Christmas music, why not join them at one of the concerts.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Listen to BBC Radio Berkshire this Sunday 10a.m. to midday and hear our Jackie!


Listen again http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p004gk6l

Our Patron, Martin Salter, is standing in for Debbie McGee on BBC Radio Berkshire this Sunday, and our Jackie Malcolm, has been invited along as his guest along with our new friend Alok Sharma, Reading West MP!   For more click here!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Smoking and MS

Source Shift.MS

"We spoke to Lauren from the Mayo Clinic about smoking and how it affects the course of MS. In the midst of the crazy-busy poster hall at the MS conference, Lauren managed to give us a good insight into her study." To watch click here. 

How drug trials work

Source MS Society:

A new research blog has been launched by the MS Society on how drug trials work.

"We hear about new ideas in medicine all the time, but why do we have to wait so long to get a treatment? It can take years or even decades to get a treatment through clinical trials and it can be very frustrating to wait for that research to happen, but there are good reasons for research to take so long."

 For more click here.

Spasticity and spasms webcast


Source The MS Trust:
A webcast on one of the common symptoms of multiple sclerosis has benn launched on the MS Trust website.  For more click here.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

RCN claims 56,000 NHS posts cut or at risk


Source: Nursing Times
"Among the biggest cuts identified are at Heatherwood and Wexham Park NHS Foundation Trust. The RCN says it lost 280 full time posts in 2010-11 and plans to cut another 533 by 2014, equating to more than a quarter of its total 2010 headcount."  Read more here.

Ray of hope for Helen Ley Centre

Source BBC:
A care centre in Warwickshire for people with multiple sclerosis (MS) could be saved from closure because a potential new owner has been found.  Read more here.

Future Forum advises how the NHS should work in 2012 - 2013


Source the MS Trust:
On 17th November, the NHS Future Forum published a letter to the Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley. This letter requests priority is given to a number of areas in the Department of Health's Operating Framework for the NHS 2012-13, the document that will set out the structural plan for next year. Read more here.

Heatherwood hospital in Ascot 'could be privatised'


Source the BBC:
Hundreds of residents turned up to a meeting on the future of a Berkshire NHS hospital that could be privatised.  Read more here.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Christmas Fayre Success!

We would like to say a very big THANK YOU to the BMSTC Link Group for organising such a wonderful event which raised £1,755.19p! 

We were delighted that Alok Sharma MP, could join us as our guest of honour and officially open the Fayre at 1.00pm to a queue of eagerly waiting punters!

We would also like to thank all of our fantastic army of volunteers for giving up not only their time to help on the day, but also for the many hours spent making items to sell. 

Many people make a very big effort to make this event such a great success and we greatly appreciate their help and support.

Carers Rights Day - Friday 2nd December 2011

If you provide care or support to a dependent adult or disabled child You are a Carer Pop along to the Council Chamber Civic Offices, Reading on Friday 2 December 2011 between 10:00am and 2:00pm
For INFORMATION, ADVICE AND SUPPORT from Princess Royal Trust Carers Service, Reading Crossroads, Mencap, Jobcentre Plus, Age UK and Reading Borough Council and many more organisations plus:

11.00am - 12noon: MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR MONEY A seminar from the Money Advice Service* covering budgeting, borrowing, spending and saving.

12.30pm - 1:30pm: YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS Local solicitors Turpin and Miller will present money related legal issues such as Carers' Assessments, Personal Budgets, charging for services and Power of Attorney.

Refreshments provided To book, or if you need respite or help with transport please call Helen at PRT Carers Service on 0118 960 7030 or email Helen@prtberks.plus.com

Friday, 18 November 2011

MS Society policy team win top award


Congratulations to the MS Society!

For more information click here.

MSRC launches new High Dose Oxygen Therapy Page!



The MS Resource Centre launches new High DOsage Oxygen Therapy Page.  For more information click here!

Cyprus Wheelchair Holidays!



Highly recommended by one of our members as fantastic apartments with great access for the disabled :0)

Visit their website here!

Christmas Fayre Saturday 19th November

Hope to see you at the Christmas Fayre tomorrow!  Come along and buy all of your Christmas goodies!

For more information see our events page here!

MSRC launch a new Exercise & Physiotherapy Page



The MS Recourse Centre launches a new Exercise and Physiothearpy page.  For more information click here.

High dose vitamin D pills 'can double heart condition risk'


Source The Telegraph:
Those with "excess" levels of the vitamin in their blood were 2.5 times more likely than those with normal levels to have atrial fibrillation (AF), a type of heart flutter common in old age which can lead to stroke.
More than a million people in Britain are thought to have AF, the vast majority over 70. Read more here.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Simon Holmes completes "Survival of the Fittest"


Our thanks go to Simon Holmes who did a 10K race at the end of October to raise money for BMSTC.

 "I have managed to raise just under £500, which is double my target!  The race went well, I ended up coming about 1600 out of 2200, which I'm happy with.  I completed the race in 2 hours 5 minutes! The distance was actually over 11.5km in the end, the last 2k being by far the hardest having just run up and down the Millennium Stadium stairs for about 20 minutes!!  A few of the obstacles were interesting. One being an army assault course with cargo nets, monkey bars, boxes to climb up and jump off.  It all looks easy but after 7 or so kilometres, it was pretty hard going.  Another part was climbing down the side of a slippery hill then wading through the river, twice!! Again sounds ok, but the water was freezing and long climb back up the hill each time.  It all finished off with a 8/9 foot wall with a couple of ropes to use to climb to the top!!  
The running went well, I had a few issues about 2km in and looking behind me to the  Millennium Stadium in the far distance the morale really dropped.  But after a little bit of stretching and a few encouraging words from other competitors, I managed to run most of it!  I walked a bit after the stair climbing and bouncy castle assault course, which really took it out of me!!  But got my rhythm back over the last kilometre and managed to cross the line running!!
 I have attached a picture of me at the end of the race look pretty sweaty and very exhausted!!"



Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Slough Young carers scheme future secure


Source BBC:
Young carers in Berkshire have described how a support project has helped them cope with looking after their loved ones.

Slough Crossroads opens its doors for two hours each week, offering young people a much-needed break.  Read more here.

Global MS research efforts shared at ECTRIMS/ACTRIMS meeting


Source MS Trust:
More than 7,000 investigators convened in Amsterdam on October 19-22, 2011 to present findings at a joint congress of ECTRIMS (European Committee for Treatment and Research in MS) and ACTRIMS (Americas Committee for Treatment and Research in MS).
Read more here.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

A Strictly Special Shopping Night, Monday 5th December, Reading Town Centre.

Retailers in Reading will extend a warm welcome to the elderly and disabled during a special Christmas shopping evening in the town centre on Monday 5 December.

The festive shopping evening, organised by Reading Borough Council in partnership with Reading UK CIC, The Oracle and The British Red Cross aims to help make shopping an easy and enjoyable experience for elderly and disabled people.   For more information click here.

MS student 'might move countries'

Source BBC:
A woman with multiple sclerosis (MS) says she is considering leaving Anglesey for England because of the lack of specialist help in the area.    Read more here.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

MS Trust Consultation at BMSTC 28th November



MS Trust Consultation at BMSTC - The MS Trust is looking to the future and trying to identify the big challenges and changes that will affect people with MS over the next 5 years. We’re doing this to make sure that the services we are providing fit with those that PWMS want the most in the future.

 We want your views on what you think these challenges and changes will be. We’ve identified some key areas already, you can comment on these or suggest things you think we haven’t included.  Read more here. 

1 million to lose incapacity benefits under Coalition reforms - Telegraph


Source The Telegraph:

Almost one million people will be stripped of their incapacity benefit payments and forced to look for jobs under major reforms to the welfare system over the next three years, research has found.  Read more here.

Natalizumab (Tysabri) treatment for children with MS


Source MS Trust:

A study of 35 children under the age of 18 treated for 23 months with natalizumab (Tysabri) found that the treatment was safe, well tolerated and effective in suppressing disease activity.  Read more here.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Christmas Fayre 19th November 1.00 - 3.30pm

Don't forget the BMSTC Christmas Fayre on Saturday 19th November here at the Centre from 1.00 - 3.30 pm.  This year the Fayre will be officially opened by Alok Sharma, Reading MP.  For more click here.

Pills just for you


Source The Guardian:
Your genetic makeup determines how you respond to medication, so has the time come to tailor treatments to suit the individual?  Read article here.

Bionic legs developed by Scots engineers go on sale


Source the BBC:
Robotic legs developed by two Scottish engineers to help people with spinal injuries or mobility problems walk go on sale.  Read more here.

JK’s dig spells start for clinic

Source The Scottish Sun:

HARRY Potter author JK Rowling buries a time capsule at the site of a research clinic named after her tragic mum.

Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/news/3921374/JKs-dig-spells-start-for-clinic.html#ixzz1d6n4Ktv8

My mother, my friend... my responsibility


Hannah, left, and her mum Helen, who was diagnosed with MS in 1998
Source Fabulous:

Thousands of carers across the UK provide invaluable help, but often their own worries go unheard. Hannah Dunk, 30, from Reading, speaks out about putting her life on hold to look after a loved one. 

Read full article here.


‘Don’t cut mobility benefits for people in residential care’

  Source MS Society: An independent review launched on the 4th November has called for the Government to protect mobility payments for disabled people living in residential care. The report states that removing the benefit from people would lead to a loss of their independence.  For more click here.

Nutritionist Resource - Find a Nutritionist Near You

Nutritionist Resource only lists nutritionists who are registered with a recognised professional body or those who have sent us copies of their qualifications and insurance cover. 

For more information see their website http://www.nutritionist-resource.org.uk/

Friday, 4 November 2011

‘Don’t cut mobility benefits for people in residential care’

Source MS Society:  An independent review launched today in Parliament has called for the Government to protect mobility payments for disabled people living in residential care. The report states that removing the benefit from people would lead to a loss of their independence. Read more here.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Nutritionist Resource


If you're in need of support, search our network to be connected with a professional nutritionist.  For more click here.

Promising new treatments on the horizon


Source MS Trust:
Clinical trials report good results at international meeting on MS research
The 5th joint triennial congress for the European and Americas Committees for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS/ECTRIMS) was held in Amsterdam on 19-22 October 2011.
A number of clinical trials reported promising results. A selection of the highlights follows.  Read more here.

MS Trust Chatroom on Cognition 22nd November 10 am to 7 pm


Source MS Trust:
Cognition - 22 November 2011 10am-7pm
Do you sometimes forget where you have put things? Or find that you can't say what's on the tip of your tongue? This chatroom will discuss issues to do with memory, concentration, attention span, visuospatial awareness and dealing with complex tasks.  For more click here.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Politically sensitive draft GMC guidance says doctors should enourage patients to stay in or return to work

The Guardian homeSource the Guardian:
Doctors are being told to do more to keep patients with long-term illnesses in work and adopt healthy lifestyles. Read more here.

BRAVO - Oral laquinimod fails to reduce risk of relapse but delays MS progression


Source MS Trust:
Results from the BRAVO trial, a phase III double blind placebo controlled study comparing 0.6mg of laquinimod with interferon beta 1a and placebo over two years in people with relapsing remitting MS, found no reduction in relapse risk. The study included 1,331 people with relapsing remitting MS and is the second of two global phase III trials.  For more click here.

Vitalise Respite Centre Breaks

Vitalise is a national charity providing short breaks (respite care) and other services for people with physical disabilities, visually impaired people, and carers.
We offer inspirational opportunities for volunteers through one of the largest, most diverse volunteer programmes in the UK.  For more information click here.

In loving memory of Carol Hutchins a.k.a. The Diva

We are all very sad to hear the tragic news of Carol Hutchins death last week. 
Carol has been involved with the Centre for many years serving as a Trustee before we moved to Bradbury House in addition to offering her professional health and safety consultancy services.  Carol has been involved in numerous fundraising events to support the Centre including running the Reading Half Marathon, and when she was no longer able to run, completing the event on her hand bike. 

Carol lived with MS for 20 years, she always focused on what she could do rather than what she couldn't.  Sadly she experienced a rapid decline over the past 3 years.  She was a gritty, determined and extremely positive individual with a big heart and personality who was known amongst friends as the "Diva" as a result!  Underneath this was a highly intuitive and  compassionate individual who always showed a keen interest in other people. 

On a personal note I have known Carol for the past 16 years from when I first moved to Reading, and since then she has been, and will continue to be, an inspiration to me.  It was Carol who suggested to me 14 years ago about working for the MS Therapy Centre.   I was looking to change career path from Sales to Fundraising, and was lucky enough to help out on the "New Centre Appeal" to build Bradbury House, before later taking over from Charles Rampton as Manager in 2000.   I have Carol to thank for giving me the opportunity to work at such a fantastic place in job that I still love today.  For details of her funeral or to leave a donation to BMSTC in her memory please see her tribute page here.







David Jason in MS donation call


Source BBC:
Sir David Jason has joined the call for more funds for a new multiple sclerosis treatment centre.

He was speaking after laying a commemorative stone at the site of the new Chilterns Multiple Sclerosis Centre building in Wendover.  For more click here.