Back in 2003 an exceptional former nurse from Wickford got together with a dedicated local occupational therapist to set up a support group for people in the area affected by Parkinson’s. From just 7 people meeting in a room at Billericay’s Mayflower Hospital we have grown to a membership of almost 100 with a regular attendance of over 50 at monthly meetings. In those early days the structure and aims of the group were established with a newsletter to keep people in touch, meetings with entertainment and speakers, access to information and the very important mutual support over tea and cake.
As membership continued to grow we moved to the Archer Hall at Emmanuel Church and in 2013 the group became a Branch of Parkinson’s UK, holding an inaugural celebration day at the Holiday Inn in Basildon. Orsett Hall was the venue for two major fundraising Balls, first to mark the 40th anniversary of Parkinson’s UK and then our own Branch 10th anniversary. Over the years the Branch has hosted barn dances, outings, fish and chip suppers, cream teas. We have been entertained and informed by nurses, Professors, PAT dogs, DJs and more. Fundraising activities have included street collections, the Barleylands Fun Walk, quiz nights, golf days, Football Charity Cup, coffee mornings, skydiving, Marathon runs.
All money raised continues to be used for supporting people whose lives are affected by Parkinson’s, both running our Branch and subsidising activities for local members as well as supporting research work to find better treatments and ultimately a cure.
Parkinson's UK is the operating name of the Parkinson's Disease Society of the United Kingdom. A registered charity in England and Wales (258197) and in Scotland (SC037554). Registered office: 215 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 1EJ.