Weekly Update 7 December 2020

Lockdown Quiz

The latest quiz from Julie Clarke (number 36) has been loaded to the website as well as the answers to number 35. Go to the quiz page where you’ll also find  this weeks music quiz (number 35) and the answers to music quiz number 34. Our quiz page lists all the quizzes that have been set previously.

News from our Groups

Roll up, roll up! The circus is back in town.

After months of waiting, and too long missing the fun of the circus – the moment is finally here. On Monday 7th and Monday 14th December the Sandbach and District U3A Circus Group will meet in person, in a well ventilated and Covid secure hall at the Fitness Studio (Sandbach Rugby Union Football Club in Bradwell Road). 12.15 to 13.45.
Peter Duncan, the group’s Circus Trainer and Sharon Ginnis the Group Leader have been involved in  conferences and courses using various on-line platforms during the summer and autumn where they have helped community circus’s and circus performers to develop Covid-safe guidelines for buildings and for working with groups of people. But away from the remoteness of Zoom and Teams, nothing beats sharing the joy of juggling three balls more than ten times ‘in-person’ with friends. Being with other people also helps those of us who spend a lot of time picking juggling kit up off the floor after many ‘whoops’ events (some of us drop the balls and hoops rather a lot). But then some of us are balance specialists – we want to take our circus skills to the wire – literally!

Circus Skills Day | No dates yet | Creative Workspace, Bristol | Tickets Ignite
So, although like many other groups the Circus Group retreated to online meetings in March and April we haven’t entirely disappeared from view. During the nicer weather you might have spotted Peter (with some definitely noticeable jackets and hats) and Sharon in Elworth Park, with a bag of circus kit, they have been practicing juggling and hula hooping. More recently a few of the Circus Group met up in Sandbach Town Park (in a distanced way) for a photo-shoot for the U3A’s national magazine. Look out for a picture of Sandbach and District U3A’s Chair demonstrating how he ‘walks the line’ – the slackline that is.
We’ll only be able to manage two sessions before Christmas but we’ll be back in January 2021 to run regular classes all being well. If you would like to know more about the Circus Group please get in touch.

Local News

Live music in Sandbach!
If you live in or near Sandbach there is a good chance you will be aware of its reputation for music. The world-famous Foden’s Band, Sandbach Concert Series and the long tradition of music at Sandbach School are just some of the reasons why significant musicians choose to make their home here. Even though watching live performances haven’t been possible for several months, there has been plenty happening online for people who are interested.
I was surprised when Tricia (my partner) announced one day last week that she had bought tickets for a live performance of Sandbach School Big Band on Friday night. ‘Live performance’ I thought – that sounds good. The tickets were for a livestream of the annual concert in which Matt Ford, probably the best-known UK big band singer, sings with the Sandbach School Big Band. Well, what a performance! Two hours of top-class music, performed in the school drama studio in front of a small number of parents. It was just fabulous. If you shut your eyes it could easily be mistaken for a CD playing. And as Matt Ford pointed out, the arrangements used were exactly the same arrangements as he uses with, for example, the John Wilson Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall.
The band is directed by John Barber, ex Head of Music at Sandbach School, now Director of the Love Music Trust as well as being principal trombonist at Foden’s Band, and every year the quality of the music they produce gets better. Some of their past performances are on their Youtube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyf5cHnqVp75SOXwOx6PT9A). If you are interested, look out for their Christmas Concert (details to follow). It will be worth watching.

Stuart Naylor

Stay safe and avoid waiting in A&E – Contact NHS 111 first
People in Cheshire who need urgent NHS care are being urged to contact NHS 111 before they decide to walk into A&E.
NHS 111 is now able to book a time slot for attendance at an emergency department or, if appropriate, can support you to access the alternative service you need, first time. To improve patient experience, and prevent crowding in emergency departments, the new system has been launched at all three of Cheshire’s hospital Trusts – The Countess of Chester, East Cheshire and Mid Cheshire Hospitals.
People with life-threatening conditions or those that need emergency attention should still call 999.
Seif Ahmad, Emergency Department Service Lead at Leighton Hospital, said: “Nobody is going to be turned away from our emergency department but, so we can avoid a lot of people arriving at the same time, if you have an urgent – but not emergency – health issue contact NHS 111 to find out where you should be treated and when.  If it is decided you should go to the emergency department, by giving you an appointment slot we can see and treat you more quickly and safely maintain social distancing in our waiting room to protect you from the risk of COVID-19 as well as seasonal illnesses like flu and colds. All patients who need a ‘blue light’ response will still receive one and no patient will be turned away if they come to an emergency department without calling 111 first.”
In addition to the free NHS 111 phone line, NHS 111 can also be contacted online: https://111.nhs.uk/
https://healthwatchcheshireeast.org.uk/news/stay-safe-and-avoid-waiting-in-ae-contact-nhs-111-first/

National News

Staying safe whilst shopping on-line

Online Shopping - Openclipart
Reports of online shopping fraud have surged by 30% over the pandemic as many of us continue to shop online in light of current restrictions. The over-riding advice is to use your common sense – if it looks too good to be true, it probably is. Don’t provide any information that you wouldn’t be happy to give to a shop keeper over the counter. The following advice comes from Action Fraud – actionfraud.police.uk/shoponlinesafely

  • Only create an account if necessary or to save you effort if you’re going to use that site a lot in the future. Be cautious if the website asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.
  • If you decide to go ahead with the purchase, ensure that the webpage where you enter your payment details is secure (website address starts with “https”). Using a credit card to pay online also means that should the worst happen and your payment details are compromised, your main bank account won’t be directly affected.
  • Some of the messages you receive about amazing offers may contain links to fake websites. Not all links are bad, but if you’re unsure, don’t use the link – go separately to the website. Report any suspicious emails you receive by forwarding them to: report@phishing.gov.uk You can also report suspicious text messages by forwarding them to 7726.

For more information about how to shop online securely, please visit actionfraud.police.uk/shoponlinesafely

Brandenburg Traditional Christmas Concerts

Brandenburg Choral Festival of London is delighted to invite you to join us online for our Traditional Christmas Concerts:
2.00 PM WEDNESDAY 16TH DECEMBER
2.00 PM THURSDAY 17TH DECEMBER
Traditional carols and readings – plus the unique Brandenburg recipe for mulled wine!
The pre-recorded musical content will include familiar audience carols singing along with the Brandenburg Camino Choir as well as Christmas-related music and a few more unusual carol settings by the professional choir of St Bartholomew the Great. Instrumental support will include the organ, piano, harp and trumpet. The programme will be interspersed with seasonal readings.

Delivery will be via Zoom. (no technical knowledge required – just click on the link supplied) A pdf programme will be supplied to be printed at home together with tips to enhance the quality of audio delivery in the home.

In the interval concert-goers can come off mute, mingle, drink a mulled wine (recipe supplied) and nibble a mince pie. This will take place in small breakout rooms, each hosted by a member of the Brandenburg Team. With small numbers we can create a genuine social event

TICKETS ARE £10.00  from brandenburg.org.uk/christmas

And finally …

I can’t believe I got fired from the calendar factory – all I did was take a day off!

Money talks – all mine says is goodbye.

I went to see the doctor about my short-term memory problems — the first thing he did was make me pay in advance.

You have two parts of the brain, “left” and “right” — in the left side, there’s nothing right and in the right side, there’s nothing left.

Why do bees hum? They don’t remember the lyrics!

I have a dog to provide me with unconditional love but I also have a cat to remind me that I don’t deserve it – it’s all about balance.

Don’t spell part backward – it’s a trap.

Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation towards the local swimming pool – I gave him a glass of water.

Most people are shocked when they find out how bad I am as an electrician.

I find it ironic that the colours red, white, and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.