Rugby charity still going strong after 25 years

The Rugby branch of Parkinson's UK held a special event to mark the charity's 25th'¨ anniversary last week.

Monday, 6th June 2016, 9:16 am
Updated Monday, 6th June 2016, 10:22 am
The Rugby branch of Parkinsons UK marked their 25th anniversary on Thursday, May 26. Left to right: Pat Rose, Jim Cave, Rae Ogden and Beryl Emery BEM. NNL-160527-102355001

The group met at the United Reformed Church on Hillmorton Road last Thursday, where they enjoyed food, a raffle and the chance to socialise.

Vice-chairman Beryl Emery, BEM, founded the Rugby branch in 1986, alongside Pat Rose and the late Mary Cross.

The group was inaugurated as a charity five years later and has gone from strength to strength ever since.

Beryl said: “We realised there was nothing in Rugby for people with Parkinson’s and their families, so we thought let’s start a group.”

“It’s amazing how much it’s grown since then.”

Beryl was awarded a BEM in 2012 for her services to Parkinson’s UK and other charities and proudly sported her medal at the anniversary celebrations.

She added: “We’ve helped by raising money but also by changing attitudes towards Parkinson’s. People are much more willing to talk about it and get things out in the open.”

The Rugby branch of Parkinson’s UK holds exercise classes and provides help with speech and language, as well as hosting a range of informative talks.

There are also plenty of fun activities for those with the condition and their carers to get involved with – including skittles nights, holidays and the annual Christmas party.

But these activities wouldn’t be possible without generous donations from people in the town.

A cheque for £1,762 was presented to the Rugby branch of Parkinson’s UK, (pictured left), at the 25th anniversary celebrations.

The money had been raised at a Spanish night in Dunchurch, held in memory of the late David Ogden, who had the condition.

The fundraising evening saw guests enjoy Spanish food prepared by David’s son Graham and entertainment from a Spanish guitarist and flamenco dancer. His wife Rae was in attendance to present the cheque to charity representatives at the anniversary celebration.

To contact the Rugby branch and find out more, call 01788 573399 and speak to chairman Jim Cave.