Great tea dance together

Bramley Community Centre, Waterloo Lane, LS13 2JB
Sunday 10 June 2.00-4.00

Come and learn how to sequence dance this June as we throw open the doors to theEnjoying a tea dance Sunday Tea Dance. Adults of any age are welcome to this FREE event, part of the Great Get Together in memory of Jo Cox MP.

Get your dancing shoes on, or just come for a chat, to listen to the music, and to enjoy a special afternoon tea. Let’s get together and tackle social isolation in our community.

Please phone 0113 236 1644 to book a place.

The Great Together logo

Preventing loneliness – West Leeds to Westminster

Preventing loneliness was put right in the spotlight on January 17, with work ranging from individual contacts and group work in West Leeds, right through to major government policy announcements in Westminster.

BEA General Manager Lee Ingham was invited by Rachel Reeves (Leeds West MP, andBill Graham and Lee Ingham outside No.10 BEA Patron) along with Bill Graham (Community Leader at New Wortley Community Association) to attend Prime Minister’s Question Time and a reception at 10 Downing Street.

The reception, hosted by the Prime Minister, came in response to the publication last month of a report – Combatting loneliness one conversation at a time –  by the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness. Rachel Reeves has been working on the Commission (with fellow MP Seema Kennedy) since the murder of her friend Jo Cox MP.

Lee and Bill were both in the Commons when the PM announced the appointment of a Minister for Loneliness (Tracey Crouch MP), one of the report’s recommendations.
They both then went on to the Downing Street reception to mark Jo Cox’s legacy and the important work of the Commission.

“BEA was honoured to accompany our patron (Rachel Reeves) at the 10 Downing Street reception for Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness. The appointment of a Minister for Loneliness should help us to continue the fight against loneliness.” Lee Ingham (General Manager, BEA)

 

“Great to be able to represent &  highlight the innovative work done by many organisations in West Leeds at No.10 Downing Street to tackle loneliness. We are  looking forward to being part of a conversation that highlights how community and connecting people can become a core health outcome that will benefit society as a whole.” Bill Graham (Community Leader, New Wortley Community Association)

The same morning ITV Calendar filmed BEA’s exercise class at Bramley Community Centre, and interviewed participants and BEA Activities Co-ordinator Debbie Fawthrop. The piece, shown on Calendar, highlighted the crucial role of BEA’s work in preventing loneliness, and the importance of volunteers.

Bramley Elderly Action and New Wortley Community Association are among the key organisations in helping to prevent loneliness, which can people of any age can feel, in West Leeds. BEA runs a large range of groups and services for local people aged 60+, and offers volunteeirng opportunities to people aged 18+. New Wortley Community Association provides activities and services of the whole of their local community.

Bramley Elderly Action has moved!

Bramley Elderly Action has now moved to Bramley Community Centre – Waterloo Lane, Bramley, Leeds LS13 2JB. Our phone number is still 0113 236 1644.

As well as having our office at the Centre, and running some regular activities there, we have also taken on managing Bramley Community Centre for the whole community, as a result of a community asset transfer from Leeds City Council, which was agreed in February 2017.

ley Community Centre, interior.

The centre is currently home to a number of local groups, including Bramley Historical Society and Bramley Luncheon Club. The change of management will not disrupt existing group meetings at the centre.

The move will allow residents and groups to continue making use of the centre for community activities and private events.

We want Bramley Community Centre to be:

  • central to the community
  • accessible, affordable, safe
  • thriving, friendly, creative
  • a place Bramley is proud of

BEA general manager Lee Ingham said:

Lee Ingham“Places like Bramley Community Centre are really important because they provide warm, welcoming spaces where people can get together. It’s our New Year’s resolution to revive Bramley Community Centre and enable more local people to benefit through it. It’s a brilliant building that could be used for all sorts of community initiatives and events, so if you have an idea please get in touch – let’s make 2018 a really good year in Bramley’s history.”

We are keen for local people to help the Centre make a fresh start by suggesting how the centre could be used to improve life in Bramley in the future. You can get in touch about the Centre in any of the following ways:

Phone – 0113 236 1847
Email – bramleycommunityc@gmail.com
Twitter – @BramleyCCentre
Facebook – BramleyCommunityCentre

Bramley Elderly Action to take on management of Bramley Community Centre

We’re very pleased that a more certain future for Bramley’s Community Centre looks to be on the cards with the decision of Leeds City Council to pass management of the building to Bramley Elderly Action. We will manage it as a resource for the whole community to use.

The decision, made by the council’s Executive Board on February 8th, paves theBramley Community Centre way for BEA to encourage residents to use the resource more often for activities, social events and community celebrations for young and older. We will also move our staff to the building on Waterloo Lane.

As well as being used by BEA members for regular tea dances, exercise groups, tai chi and a craft group, the Centre also already hosts a number of community groups, including Bramley Historical Society and Bramley Luncheon Club. We are extremely keen for those groups to continue using the Centre and for others to use it too.

Our initiative has the full support of the three Bramley & Stanningley Councillors: Caroline Gruen, Julie Heselwood and Kevin Ritchie, while our own voluntary Trustees have worked hard over a long period of time to make it happen.

Stuart Quin, Chair of Bramley Elderly Action, said:

‘We’re delighted at the decision, which has massive support Stuart Quinfrom our members, volunteers and the local community. Our members remember the Community Centre in its prime – a place that connected people, and created opportunities for young and old.  There’s a lot of work ahead to restore the fortunes of this underused community resource but we’re really looking forward to working with others and being part of a bright new chapter at the Community Centre. ’

Visitors to an open day BEA held at the Centre in October 2016 showed overwhelming support for the change. They were invited to look at archive photos from Bramley History Society of how Bramley Community Centre was used in its heyday and suggest new ideas for its future.

In 2014, in another ‘asset transfer’ from Leeds City Council, we took on the management of Bramley Lawn (formerly Bramley Lawn Day Centre) which we have transformed into a vibrant community social centre. While we intend to move staff from our current office on Stanningley Road to Bramley Community Centre, we will continue to run activities for the whole community from Bramley Lawn. Together, the two centres will give much easier access for local older people to BEA staff and activities. BEA will continue to run activities and services for older people across the Bramley, Swinnow and Stanningley areas.

The Council Executive Board’s decision invites BEA to take on a 25 year lease with a peppercorn rent. The Council will carry out essential repair work identified in a recent condition survey before the lease begins. It is hoped that we will take possession of the Centre later this year.

We would love to hear from local companies and individuals who may be prepared to pledge time or resources to help refurbish Bramley Community Centre later this year. This may involve painting, decorating, electrics, plumbing, plastering, gardening or other practical skills. Get in touch!

Strong local support for BEA to manage Bramley Community Centre

Bramley Elderly Action held a successful open house day at Bramley Community Centre, on Thursday 13 October.

We invited people to ‘Community at the centre’ to give us their views about ourWall of questions and comments interest in taking on the management of the centre from Leeds City Council. The day was well attended by local residents of all ages.

After going on a tour of the building, visitors were able to give their views in a number of ways, including at a series of informal question and answer sessions, and slips on which to vote ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘unsure’. There was overwhelming support for BEA taking on the management of the centre.

Comments included:

‘They would be great custodians of the building and ensure it supports and is a resource for the whole community’

‘…it would reinvigorate the community centre’

‘Great central position. A good size for a variety of events.’

BEA Manager Lee Ingham facilitates the afternoon q and a sessionSeveral visitors had good memories of using the building many years ago, either as children or in later life. Many of them, though familiar with the centre, were surprised by how big it was and welcomed the chance to go on a tour.

We received many useful questions and comments, ranging from important practical issues such as parking, to ideas of how the centre could be used. We will take all of these into account.

Bramley and Stanningley Councillors Caroline Gruen, Julie Heselwood and Kevin Ritchie, all took part in the day and all support BEA’s proposal.

Neil Charlesworth (Principal Asset Management Officer, Leeds City Council), who took part in the evening question and answer session, confirmed that Bramley Elderly Action’s proposal to take on the management of Bramley Community Centre will go to Leeds City Council’s Executive Board meeting on December 16th.

The day has reinforced for BEA our interest in managing the centre for the benefit of the whole community. We hope to hear positive news in December. We will keep our members and the wider community informed about progress.

Community at the Centre

Bramley Elderly Action (BEA) is seeking the views of local people about its interest in taking on the management of Bramley Community Centre. We are holding Community at the Centre ‘Open House’ at Bramley Community Centre, from 12.00-8.00pm on Thursday 13th October.Bramley Community Centre

We are inviting people of all ages to come along and give their views about the centre’s future. Children and young people are encouraged to come and share their ideas and ask questions too. You will be able to do a short tour of the building, ask questions and contribute in various ways.

  • Drop in – any time during the day for tours, tea and cake
  • Tours of the building – 12.30pm, then every hour at half past until 7.30pm
  • Question & answer session with Bramley Elderly Action staff, Stuart Quin (Chair of BEA Board), and Neil Charlesworth (Leeds City Council) – 7.00pm.

You are very welcome to just drop in at any time, even if you don’t want to go on a tour of the building – a member of Bramley Elderly Action staff will be available to speak to.Community at the Centre Logo

Bramley Elderly Action would like to submit a formal ‘expression of interest’ in managing the centre to Leeds City Council by the end of 2016, and is keen to listen and learn from the views of the community first.

BEA wants to enable individuals, community groups and local organisations to use it for activities and events, to ensure that it has a sustainable future and is developed for the whole community, while continuing to be used for activities by local older people, including the lunch clubs and weekly exercise class.

We also hope to move our office there, which would help to make our services even more accessible to local older people. We would continue to manage the successful Bramley Lawn social centre where we have developed a large range of innovative activities since it opened in 2014.

Stuart Quin, Chair of Bramley Elderly Action said:

“We’re really looking forward to chatting with local people on 13 October. We hope to be part of a bright future for this Centre, so that community continues to be at the heart of this space.”

Come along and give your views.

Follow the trail..find the scarecrows

The scarecrows are gathering and will be available for visiting from Monday 26Bramley scarecrow trail front cover September.

To help you find them you can download the Bramley Scarecrow Trail, which shows where all the scarecrows have agreed to stay until Bramley scarecrow trail mapthey leave the area on Sunday 9 October.

They will be very happy for you to take selfies with them and share your photos on Twitter (@bramleyelderly #bramleyscarecrows ) and other social media.

The scarecrows, which have been brought to life by local individuals, families and organisations, are staying all over Bramley, Swinnow and Stanningley.

A panel of local judges will reveal the winning scarecrow at Bramley Challenge on Saturday 1 October (12.00-4.00 at Bramley Lawn). Come along and see if your favourite is a winner.

The Bramley Scarecrow Trail has been developed in partnership with Bramley Grows (a group of residents interested in making Bramley more edible and more fun), and supported by International Day of Older Persons.

 

Community committee discusses social isolation and loneliness

Bramley Elderly Action is very pleased that the next meeting of Leeds Inner West Community Committee will discuss social isolation and loneliness in Armley, Bramley, Stanningley and Kirkstall.

The meeting, at Bramley Community Centre (Waterloo Lane), is at 6.00 on Wednesday 9 March16. This is an opportunity for local people, of whatever age, to give their views on this important issue.

Social isolation and loneliness are being increasingly recognised as a serious threat to health. Research shows that lacking social connections is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. It affects people’s physical and mental health, and independence.

The Community Committee is an opportunity for local people to get their voices heard on a range of issues, and all are welcome to attend.

 

 

 

 

Meeting about the future of Bramley Community Centre

Come and give your views about the future of Bramley Community Centre.

As a result of concerns expressed by members at our Annual General Meeting in October,Bramley Community Centre Bramley Elderly Action has organised a meeting, supported by local Councillors who offered to meet with BEA members to discuss the Centre’s future.

The Councillors – Caroline Gruen, Julie Heselwood and Kevin Ritchie – all share our members’ concerns, and would welcome the opportunity to hear people’s views in a special meeting.

The meeting will be held at 2.00 on Monday 18th January, at Bramley Community Centre on Waterloo Lane. BEA will provide transport for those who need it to get to the meeting.

You do not need to book a place at the meeting. Please feel free to invite friends, family and neighbours.

BEA uses the Centre a great deal for various groups. BEA General Manager Lee Ingham said:

“…we remain committed to working with the council to seek an effective use of this valuable community resource.”

 

 

 

“Bramley Elderly Action gives people the opportunity to try new things”: Rachel Reeves MP at our AGM

Bramley Elderly Action held a well attended Annual General Meeting on Saturday 10 October.

The meeting, at Bramley Band Club, was attended by approximately 90 BEA members who enjoyed the food, the chance to get together with old friends and the opportunity to pick up their copy of the new BEA calendar.

Rachel Reeves MP speaking BEA's AGM 2015 (YouTube)

Rachel Reeves, MP for Leeds West and BEA Patron, said: “Bramley Elderly Action brings out the best in people, gives people chances and the opportunity to try new things”. She also noted that it was the anniversary of her lawnmower race (which she’d certainly never tried before!) at the opening of Bramley Lawn. (You can see the whole of Rachel Reeves’ speech.)

We are encouraging members to try something new, which has been a huge theme of Bramley Lawn, and is very much reflected in our annual report.BEA calendar 2016 front cover

Lord Mayor of Leeds, Cllr Judith Chapman, also addressed the meeting. She particularly thanked the BEA volunteers and encouraged new people to volunteer.

There was a lively question and answer session, with members interested in a range of topics, including the need for a new minibus, new volunteer drivers and escorts and concerns over the future of Bramley Community Centre.

One of the highlights of the day came when Rachel and Judith presented long-termSally and Rose receive long service awards service awards to Sally McHale and Edna Rose, who are standing down from the BEA board, having been involved from the very beginning 21 years ago.

BEA General Manager Lee Ingham was particularly pleased to acknowledge the recent fundraising efforts of a group of 19 members, supporters, volunteers and staff in raising more than £2,000 through walking the Three Peaks.

Please get in touch if you would like to volunteer for BEA, or take part in fundraising.