Information Now

19 January 2018


  • Information NOW
  • Walking to keep fit
  • Holocaust Memorial day
  • Praise for Newcastle’s stroke research team

Research & Reports

  • State pension concerns
  • NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC)

Opportunities for Action

  • Consultation on Remote Control Parking and Motorway Assist
  • Volunteer with the NHS
  • Quick guide to helping prevent infection in care homes


  • IT classes project
  • Computer classes
  • Tinnitus Information Day

New on InformationNOW this week!

  • Age UK information session on gas and electricity
  • Lecture on the effects of food and nutritional supplements

Updated articles & organisations

  • Deaf and hard of hearing
  • Food and Friends
  • Fitness activities
  • Linskill Healthy Walks CIC
  • Walker Park Cafe and Centre


Information NOW

Have you been using the Information NOW website (  over the last few months? We would love to hear from you about our new website (branding, range of information, organisations and events) so that we can continually review how well it is meeting the needs of people over 50 years old in Newcastle. You can send us a page comment at the bottom of any article or organisation or you can contact the Information NOW team by email.

Walking to keep fit

Do you want to keep fit and active through walking this year?  Active Newcastle are promoting and coordinating lots of activities during week days and weekends to support your health and fitness.  Walking also gives you great opportunities to make new friends.  To find out more contact Linkskill Health Walks CIC, Active Newcastle and have a look at our Information NOW Fitness article which covers many other sports and activities.  To find out what fitness activities are going on in Newcastle, visit our events and activities section.

Holocaust Memorial Day 2018 – The Power of Words, 24 January through to the end of Februar

Starting on 24 January, Newcastle City Council and partners will deliver a special programme of events to mark Holocaust Memorial Day 2018. It will commemorate those people who suffered and died, and those who tried to protect and save them. This year’s national theme is ‘The Power of Words’ and in Newcastle there will be an opportunity to explore how use of language can incite hatred including: films, poetry, talks, art exhibitions and a conference, ‘10 Steps to Genocide’.  To download the programme visit the Newcastle City Council events website. Alongside this, the Brundibar Arts Festival will run and includes little known music written during the period of  the Holocaust.  Artistic Director, Alexandra Raikhlina, says “There are dwindling numbers of Holocaust survivors who can tell their stories first hand. Our generation carries the responsibility to find new ways of telling them, and to strive for a more comprehending and cohesive world”.

Praise for Newcastle’s stroke research team

Following a peer review led by experts from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the stroke research team at the RVI have been commended for the highest number of patients taking part in a broader range of complex clinical trials than any other centre.

NIHR’s Stroke Specialty is one of 30 specialties which bring together clinical research expertise to provide high-quality stroke research studies in the NHS. This research is delivered through 15 Local Clinical Research Networks across England with a local lead for stroke research in each area.

To find out more about stroke read our Information NOW article.


State pension concerns

From April this year, the rate of the state pension for new pensioners will increase in line with inflation by £4.80 from £159.55 to £164.35 per week.  However, pension credit – the benefit for the poorest pensioners – is set to rise from £159.35 to £163. because it is only set to increase in line with the growth in average earnings. Research from the Pensions Policy Institute (PPI), sponsored by Age UK and reported in FT Adviser, shows that the poorest pensioners are relying on the state pension for three quarters (78 per cent) of their income and this can be as little as £7 thousand a year. One positive step is the announcement from the Government that the state pension age increase should be brought forward to 68 between 2037 and 2039, due to increases in life expectancy. Under the current law, the state pension age is due to increase to 68 between 2044 and 2046.

If you need advice about pensions or planning for retirement read our articles or browse our website. Retirement isn’t just about managing finances so you may also find this retirement tool helpful as well.

NHS Continuing Healthcare

The Public Accounts Committee of Parliament has published its first report in relation to patients’ experience of accessing continuing healthcare (CHC) funding whether they require it at home or somewhere else.  They took evidence from Beacon (advocacy service), the Continuing Healthcare Alliance (a coalition of charities and professional bodies that work to improve the delivery of NHS continuing Healthcare in England), the Sue Ryder charity as well as stakeholders working with patients trying to get, or receiving, CHC funding. The Committee is concerned that there is massive variation in accessing funding, including assessment of need and awards, across the country. It noted that delays in getting care packages in place also results in delays in discharging people from hospital, with about 7% of delayed transfers of care in hospital being related to CHC. Those most at risk appear to be those who are at the end of their lives with rapidly deteriorating conditions.  In autumn last year, Healthwatch Newcastle undertook a survey of patient experiences of continuing healthcare in Newcastle and Gateshead so their report may offer more information about care packages offered within our own localities.

To find out more about accessing funding, read our Information NOW help with health costs article.



Consultation on remote control parking and motorway assist

Over the next few years, advances in connected and automated vehicle technologies will have a profound impact on our transport system. They have the potential to deliver major benefits including: fewer crashes on our roads, greater freedom to travel for those who currently find that difficult and more efficient transport networks that are safer, smoother and faster.  The Department of Transport has launched a consultation which closes on 30 January 2018.  Remote control parking is a type of assistance that allows the driver to carry out a parking manoeuvre from either inside or outside the vehicle, by issuing a command from an external device.You can respond online, you can email,  or to respond in writing download the pdf and return Annex A :  Matthew Egglington, Zone 1/33 Great Minster House, Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles, Department for Transport, 33 Horseferry Road, London SW1P 4DR

Volunteer with the NHS

Did you know that you can volunteer for the NHS?  It may be that you can alleviate some of the pressure on staff during the Winter and beyond. You can volunteer at Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust as well as other Trusts including Gateshead and NTW. Volunteering allows you to:

  • Use your spare time purposefully
  • Give something back
  • Gain an insight into potential career options
  • Develop and refresh skills
  • Build confidence and self-esteem
  • Meet new people

Quick Guide: Helping to prevent infection

NICE and SCIE have produced a new quick guide covering the basics of infection prevention in care homes. Managers and staff will find it a useful reminder of the practical steps they can take to minimise the risk of infection for the people in their care. It will also help services to achieve the infection prevention standards required by the Care Quality Commission.

You can download the guidance Helping to prevent infection – a quick guide for managers and staff in care homes



IT Classes Project 2018

Elders Council, working in partnership with Northumbria Students Union volunteers, are running tailored IT classes again. Sessions will take place on 31 January, 14 and 21 February and 7 March from 2 – 4pm.  Tuition is tailor made to suit the learner. Topics include setting up an email account; learning how to use your iPad or even learning how to use a computer for the first time. For further details or to register your interest, please email or call Anne on 0191 208 2701 or on 0191235 9905 (after 29 January).

Visit our getting online section and our events and activities pages for more computer training options.

Computer classes and support at the City Library and West End Library

The Basic Computer Skills course supports people to develop basic skills including how to access and use the internet, how to send an email, search the internet for information and attach their CV to emails. There will also be one to one support. This course is free and runs at the City Library over 2 sessions either on Wednesday or Thursday morning from 10.30 to 1 pm, Room 5 on level 4. Expenses of £4.00 will be paid on production of a valid day travel ticket.

The same Basic Skills course is also running at West End Library, Condercum Road on a Tuesday from 10.30 – 1pm.

Microsoft Word course, 1 – 3 pm at the City Library, Room 5 on Level 4
This free course, delivered by Newcastle City Learning, is designed for anyone wanting to learn how to use Microsoft Word. You will learn how to create a word document and/or how to update your CV or covering letters. They will also show you how to cut and paste text to put into different documents, forms and emails. To get the most out of this course you will need to attend both sessions. If you want help with your CV, please take it with you, a paper copy is fine but an electronic format would be even better. The course is held on a Tuesday as follows: 20 and 27 February, 6 and 13 March, 20 and 27 March at the City Library.

Techy Tea Party, second and last Thursday of each month from 2 – 3.30 pm, Room 4 City Library
These informal sessions are for people who have a tablet, iPad or smartphone that they want to get more out of, as well as those who are interested in getting one but don’t know what will suit their needs best. Topics include: basic settings, how to secure their device, general navigation and downloading apps.  It will be best to take your iPad and  Apple ID or email address and password for a tablet.

To book a place on any of these courses visit or call 0191 277 4100. You can also email   Your E-ticket can be posted to you.  Other courses you can book on this site include Interview tips, Safer Internet training and sessions related to Holocaust Memorial day.

Visit our getting online section and our events and activities pages for more computer training options including support from Search.



Age UK Newcastle Information session: ‘How can I save money on my Gas and Electricity bills?’ 

If your group, coffee morning or get together would like someone from Age UK Newcastle to come and talk to you on:

  • How to switch supplier
  • The Priorities Services Register
  • Warm Home Discount
  • Replacement Boilers and Insulation Scheme
  • Locking Cooker Valves

contact Julie or Linda on 0191 232 6488 or email them.

10th Anniversary lecture, Northumbria University, Business & Law building, Tuesday, 30 January 2018, Lecture theatre 001, 6.00pm – 7.30pm

You have the opportunity to attend a free lecture on the effects of food and nutritional supplements on mood, movement and health. In the 30 minutes before the event there will also be a free drinks reception in the foyer and the Brain, Performance and Nutrition Research team will be presenting some posters. There is the chance to take part in some mental performance tasks.  Register here.


Articles Updated

  • Deaf and hard of hearing
  • Food and Friends
  • Fitness activities

Organisations Updated

Linskill Healthy Walks CIC
Walker Park Cafe and Centre



Last updated: September 12, 2019

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