Category Archives: Local News

HEALTH: Implications of Stress

Information on how many people in the UK population as a whole are affected by stress is very limited. However, our new survey found that over the past year, almost three quarters of people have at some point felt so stressed that they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope. While stress isn’t a mental health problem in itself, it often leads to depression, anxiety, self-harm and suicide. It can also lead to physical health problems such as cardiovascular disease and joint and muscle problems.

The report available to download below, by the Mental Health Foundation, looks at the prevalence of stress in the UK and its implications. It also focuses on what we can do to manage and reduce stress and our recommendations for the government in creating a stress-free UK.

Download Report


ANALYSIS: Mortality Rate Trends

Life expectancy in the UK has risen steadily throughout recent history. However, there’s evidence that this long-term trend is finally running out of steam.

2010 marked a turning point in long-term mortality trends, with improvements tailing off after decades of steady decline – in both males and females, and at younger and older ages. In the 100 years to 2010–12, life expectancy increased by nearly three years every decade, but between 2011 and 2016 it increased by only 0.4 years for males and 0.2 years for females.

2015 was an exceptional year when life expectancy fell across virtually all of Europe. The age-standardised mortality rate3 in England and Wales in 2015 increased by 3 per cent for males and 5 per cent for females over 2014, leading to a fall in life expectancy. Most of the ‘excess’ deaths occurred early in the year and among people aged 75+.

Although life expectancy has picked up in 2016 and 2017, the Office for National Statistics announcement that the mortality rate in quarter one of 2018 was higher than in any quarter since 2009 prompted the Department of Health and Social Care to ask Public Health England to undertake a review of mortality trends in England and Wales.

The Kingsfund has a really excellent article on the subject on their website at the moment and it’s well worth a read as this is a fascinating and revealing subject.


EVENTS: Calderdale Activity Guide

Do Something!

Calderdale’s activity guide for children, young people and families

Activities for September 2018 – January 2019 are listed in the following PDF (download):

Do Something September 2018 – January 2019 activities

If you want a printed copy, they are available at local libraries, leisure centres, museums and visitor centres. The guide is packed with all sorts of fun activities for children and families all year round. There are sport and leisure activities, including: cycling courses, football events and lots of different things to do at swimming pools. There are also organised walks and events in the countryside, activities for children of all ages at libraries and in museums and sessions at play schemes and children centres, plus lots more!


Some activities you will need to book in advance. Follow the booking instructions shown next to the activity.

Please note: We suggest you contact activity organisers before booking to:

  • check the activity is taking place;
  • check that places are available;
  • to confirm the prices;
  • and for any special arrangements.

Passport to Leisure (PTL)

PTL cardholders may receive discounted rates for activities. Ask the activity providers, to see if there is a discount.

For more about PTL phone: 01422 288001 or see: Passport to Leisure .

Activities for disabled children

Most of the activities featured in ‘Do Something’ are fully inclusive for disabled people. It is essential however to check the accessibility with activity providers in advance.

Non Council run activities

In addition to the Council organised activities listed, there are lots of other things going on in Calderdale.

For more details of events, activities and interesting places in Calderdale, visit: Visit Calderdale .

If you would like this information in another format, please phone: 01422 288001.

Although every effort is made to make sure Do Something! details are correct, we suggest you contact event/activity organisers to confirm details.

SUPPORT: Care Services in Calderdale

If you need information or advice about adults health and social care in Calderdale, your first point of contact is the council’s Gateway to Care service. TRained advisors are able to give the information and support that you need.

Occasionally, you may need the help of specialist advisors or a social worker. Gateway to Care will be able to put you in touch with the right people. Contact Gateway to Care.

Eligibility for support

For the more complex needs, you will probably require an assessment of your situation: this includes whether you may need social care services for your own needs, or to help support you if you are caring for someone else.

What is an assessment?

An assessment is simply a discussion with you so that you can tell us about any difficulties you may be having in looking after yourself or in remaining independent in the community. We want to hear your views on how you are managing, what you can and cannot do and what help you feel you need.

If you need an assessment, contact Gateway to Care.

The level of support we can offer at the end of the assessment process is based on “eligibility criteria”.

The criteria look at levels of need, and set out by the Care Act 2014 to ensure that there is consistent, clear and fair access to social care services across the country.

Further information about eligibility to services under the Care Act 204 is available here.

If you require any additional information or would like an assessment of needs, our advisors will be pleased to help you. Contact Gateway to Care.

PARKING: Blue Badges

The Blue Badge scheme is a national arrangement of parking concessions for people with severe mobility problems. This helps access goods and services, by allowing parking closer to a destination. The scheme is open to eligible disabled people, irrespective of whether they are travelling as a driver or as a passenger. You can apply online at the Calderdale council website, where alternative application methods are also explained.

You may qualify automatically if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • are in receipt of Higher Rate of the Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance; or
    are registered blind;
  • receive a War Pensioner’s Mobility Supplement;
  • have been both awarded a lump sum benefit at tariffs 1-8 of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. Also, certified as having a permanent and substantial disability that causes inability to walk or considerable difficulty in walking;
  • are in receipt of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) under the ‘Moving Around’ category. Also, have been awarded eight points or more and your condition is likely to last for 12 months.
    Note: Documentary evidence is required.

You may also qualify if you:

  • have a permanent and substantial disability that causes an inability to walk, or very considerable difficulty in walking;
  • drive a motor vehicle regularly and have a severe disability in both arms. Also, are unable to operate all or some types of parking meter (or find it difficult to operate them).

You will not qualify if you:

  • have a psychological disorder, learning or behavioural problems. This will not normally qualify you unless your impairment causes very considerable and not intermittent, difficulty in walking;
  • have a disabling condition that is only temporary, such as a broken leg.


Organisations that care for and transport a significant number of disabled people, may be eligible for a Blue Badge. This is providing that those disabled people meet the Blue Badge criteria.

An assessment by the Council’s Mobility Assessor may be required if you do not automatically qualify for a badge.

Apply online at the Calderdale council website

FREE: Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield

This is very special place won the Art Museum of the Year 2014 award. The charity covers 500 acres of historic landscape, and has open-air displays of sculpture by some of the world’s leading artists. It also features in a new guide to free days out in the UK, produced by Age UK.

Of particular importance is Barbara Hepworth, a native Yorkshire woman, whose work is here in the open air, where it’s ‘allowed to breathe’.

As well as having plenty of space to walk around, you can join sculpture classes, see the exhibitions and five indoor galleries, and of course sit down at the restaurant for that all-important cup of tea.

Free mobility scooters are available, which must be booked in advance. Dogs on leads are most welcome. Parking charges apply.

The Park is close to the Henry Moore Institute, the Hepworth Wakefield and Leeds Art Gallery for a real art-lovers treat.

Find out more on the official website

COMMUNITY: Volunteer Befrienders

Are you looking for a way to share your time and give something back to the community?

Age UK Calderdale and Kirklees are currently recruiting volunteer befrienders. Join them in helping older people love later life through personalised activities, friendship and getting out and about.

Contact Age UK Calderdale and Kirklees on 01422 252040 or email: for an application pack.