It was particularly pleasing to have a complete range of Grippers stalwarts taking part; Service users, carers, NHS staff and Grippers trustees and of course two lively dogs. Near the village we were greeted by a number of racehorses but then climbed gently through woods until rewarded by splendid views and a solitary roe deer stag who didn't detect us until very close. The last mile or so brought a new vista with the added incentive of the Kilkeney Inn getting closer. Here we were made to feel very welcome by the owner Jules and enjoyed a really excellent roast lunch.
Even more satisfying is that we raised almost £400
After the interval, we heard a full-bloodied broadside in the form of Bruckner's 4th Symphony to leave the audience inspired by a glorious echo from the high vaulted nave of St Barnabas. The warmth of the applause and smiling faces were a great tribute to the fantastic effort put in by conductor Glyn Oxley and every member of this great orchestra.
In the interval, Andrew Sabourin spoke eloquently about psychosis and the important work Grippers does in raising awareness as well as benefiting young Gloucestershire residents recovering from this horrible illness.
The retiring collection raised a spectacular £373.84 which will be boosted to £467.30 as this type of collection qualifies for Gift Aid. We are particularly touched that in addition to the response from the audience, many members of the Orchestra contributed very generously.
During the interval the teams of sleuths started the process of eliminating people from their enquiries while enjoying an excellent curry supper followed by chocolate brownies. The second act was devoted to each suspect being interrogated and then the teams got down to finalising their answers, all aided by liquid refreshment from the bar.
The winning detectives, ably led by Virginia Mullan, came up on stage to receive their prizes and applause. Finally the Purton Amateur Dramatic Society were thanked warmly for their excellent and entertaining production.
As well as being a lot of fun we are delighted to announce that the evening raised over £1000 for Grippers.
Accompanied by some excellent photos, we learned a lot about the different character and culture of the countries en route, from the poverty of Malawi to the relative prosperity of Botswana.
We were also drawn into the philosophy of cycling, particularly the way in which the bicycle brings the traveller so much closer to the local people and the landscape they occupy, while still covering long distances.
Inevitably, things don't always go to plan such as an early injury to Rob's companion and too close an encounter with a bull elephant. Over two months in the saddle, cycling fitness led to the ability and ambition to cover increasing distances each day, until the final dawn until dusk dash to be able to dive into the Indian Ocean.
To round the evening off after such a splendid talk, the audience was treated to a lovely meal and in addition, raised almost £800.
It was fitting that the group comprised a wide variety of supporters of the Charity; The Rambling Rabbits walking group, NHS staff from the GRIP team, carers and other supporters and a significant number of the people who have donated very generously since the charity was founded. The family atmosphere was rounded off by the presence of young children and some lively dogs. After the walk we enjoyed a lovely roast lunch in the Seven Tuns pub after which we were treated to a presentation of this year's sponsored outward bound course in Wales.
We saw how 9 service users in the recovery phase of their illness benefited from a wide variety of challenging activities which stretched them from their comfort zones and involved introducing them to new experiences, relying upon each other, teamwork, independence and judging by the smiles, a whole lot of fun.
The Trustees of Grippers thank all our supporters over the past 10 years. We are delighted by the level of continuing interest and financial support the charity attracts and we look forward to the next 10 years of activity.
With nicely resonant acoustic, spacious dais and good lighting in the Church, the Quartet was able to enjoy a receptive audience. The concert started with the strong rhythmic Boyce Sinfonia from the Baroque period and continued with Engelbert Humperdinck's only complete string quartet. Spanning the Romantic and early 20th century periods, and known best for his charming opera Hansel and Gretel, Humperdinck's string writing is mostly tuneful and comfortable to play, though sometimes a little testing harmonically and rhythmically. Borodin's famous Nocturne, with yearning lyrical melodies contrasted. Last was Haydn's Op. 50, no.2 quartet. In firm Classical style, developed by Haydn himself, innovative syncopation and part-writing typified the composer's masterful intellect.
The interval gave members of both charities time to mingle over cups of coffee and tea and to examine details of building works on Miller Court and photos and reports from the Grippers archives up to the present day.
South Cerney Village Hall was converted into a theatre and bar. Raffle prizes were drawn during the interval, providing suspense, fun and some lovely presents. It is with great gratitude that GRIPPERS received the gift of £900 funds raised.
Professional dancers and adjudicators did not spare the competitors detailed, if fair, criticism. This was after their own wonderful show when they demonstrated just how to dance! Welcome cocktails set the 190 guests off to a good start and dinner was both delicious and relaxing as there were demonstrations of the Jive and the Cha-cha-cha throughout.
Our grateful thanks go to all organisers and participants for their generosity in supporting the following charities: Grippers for psychosis, Home-Start for family support, The Nelson Trust for treatment of addiction, St Michael and All Angel's, Poulton and Diocese of Gloucester outreach work to foster a sense of community.
We know this was only possible with hard graft and therefore has a parallel with the determination needed for 'Recovery' in psychosis.
Becca says,"The run was on Sunday and went pretty well - we both made it across the finish line in good time, injury free and feeling pretty satisfied/relieved/exhausted! Here's a photo of us afterwards."
The route, through the villages of Hazleton and Turkdean, took the walkers across hills and dales amid stunning farmland; sometimes testing fitness and agility. The welcome by the Garniche-Puesdown Inn will be remembered with gratitude. The delicious lunch round the large table provided a good forum for discussion and sharing anecdotes and stories of recovery.
For instance, sliding down a precipice at the side of the road in mountains in British Columbia. It was interesting being drawn into Rob's thoughts on the solitariness of travelling in unfrequented places abroad. His affirmation, that we humans do need each other, was seen in photos with his friends in North America. We all enjoyed lingering into the evening with a buffet meal to hand and with lots to talk about... The evening raised £465, which will go towards outward-bound projects in the near future.
The encore 'I'm a chucka train' by Albert Hammond gave us a good fast vehicle in which to travel home after the song 'Goodnight Sweetheart' and previous gems such as 'Bogoroditsye Dyevo' from the vespers by Rachmaninov and 'Sing Joyfully' by William Byrd.
Grippers is very grateful both to Octavo and Poulton Church for allowing us to collect a handsome figure to help the charity fund activities for those recovering from psychosis.
We started at The Red Lion pub at Arlingham, Gloucester, GL2 7JN - highly recommended for those who do not know it already and who like riverside walking. The visible 'goose-neck' loop of the river is attractive and beckons: and so it is that all eleven walkers finished this walk by lunch-time. The manager and staff of The Red Lion were very welcoming, taking food orders before the walk. Beers and hot food were ready for us and they joined in the spirit of our day with their generous donation. Sponsorship came to a grand total of £610.
This year, we are already committed to paying for equipment for the GRIP Women's Group (Gloucestershire Recovery In Psychosis) and for trips away for residents in three care homes for people in recovery in psychosis.
Thank you very much for your support.
The last two miles were over a stretch of green fields and a lane which we sauntered down to our destination, the Daneway pub at Sapperton.
The sun shone through the woods and there was only a little rain to fight off!
Thank you very much to the walkers and to the sponsors. Without Grippers' help, psychosis sufferers would not be able to take part in a number of important activities.
The Charity T-shirts, with the rainbow emblem, perfectly represented the contrasting weather - the sun shone and the rain poured! A very British picnic was held under the shelter of a barn roof on Sandhurst Hill; the view of the golden fields a reminder of the glorious sun of the previous hour. From the barn, we slid down the muddy path onto Wainlode Hill. Dogs and buggies led the way! A short stop at the Red Lion pub on the banks of the River Severn gave us time to reflect on this site being perfect for viewing the Severn Bore. Our final trek to our vehicles at Norton Village Hall was over wet ground, but we departed happy.
This was great fun and very well supported, with Bailey's Beads provided lively music. Fund-raising was augmented by a raffle and an auction with interesting items, including a ride in a fast car at Castle Combe and also a signed Gloucester Rugby shirt.
Highlights included a fascinating talk about the whiskies, along with tastings and including lines from Robbie Burns and tunes on the bagpipes. We then had fabulous haggis, neeps and tatties prepared by Robina and finished the evening with some lovely pictures of Islay.
This was a fruitful partnership between psychosis sufferers, Grippers charity members and friends when they combined to raise money.
This was a highly productive year in which publicity was good and funds were boosted.
Grippers' supporters took part in the charity's first sponsored walk. These walks have since become an annual event.