VCS Locality 4

Bishop Auckland, Barnard Castle, Crook and the Dales

Susan Hutchinson

VCS Alliance Worker Locality 4
Children and Young People’s Service
Direct 03000 266382 Mobile : 07795020057
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SENSE –Specialist service for children and young people with Multi-sensory impairments

For everyone living with complex disabilities. For everyone who is deafblind. Sense is here to help people communicate and experience the world. We believe that no one, no matter how complex their disabilities, should be isolated, left out, or unable to fulfil their potential. SENCE supports children, young people and adults click on the following lonk to find out more. right click and open hyper clink .

Volunteers’ week 2019

As part of Volunteers’ week 2019 we are running a volunteer fair in Durham City Outdoor Market Place on the 7th of June, 9am- 3pm.

I have attached a flyer with all the details of the event. It would be great if you could pass this on to colleagues and service users.  

St Cuthberts Hospice Furniture Scheme

St Cuthberts Furniture Scheme offers pre-loved furniture antiques, retro and contemporary items and clothing . This is a charity store for St Cuthberts Hospice.

Opening times

Monday – Friday 9.30 am – 4.40pm

Saturday 9.30 am – 3.30pm

12A Oackley Court , Meadowfield Industrial Estate DH7 8XD

Contact Malcolm 0191 378 4720

Discounts may be available if buying multiple items through referrals.

UTASS Youth Sessions (Upper Teesdale Agricultural Support Services)

We champion ourselves upon the youth sessions working, because they are what the young people want.

Mondays Girls Group

8-12 years

6pm – 8pm 

Thursdays Youth Club


6pm – 7.30pm


7.30pm -9pm

All sessions £1 per child

Please get in touch with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Mini Bus available for use

UTASS have two wheelchair accessible minbuses available for community groups (not for hire or reward).

We have a 15 seater which requires the driver to have a D1 classification on their driving licence.

We also have a 10 seater , which anyone over 25 years with a full driving license (with no more than 5points) can drive.

For more details please contact UTASS 0n 01833 641010

Beginners running Group

Willington couch to 5k group.

Meet every Tuesday at Willington Medical Centre Car Park at 6.10pm

To register with the group please go to and search for groups in Willington.

Family Holiday Association

See attached

Are now accepting applications for breaks and days out in the Summer holidays.  For more information and to register as a referrer log onto:

Call 020 3117 0650 for more information.

Cash for Kids grants –Useful information if you are wanting items not covered by other grant providers.

Cash for Kids responds to the needs of children in our communities so they can live life to the full and realise their individual potential.They  support children aged 0-18 who are disabled, disadvantaged or suffering from abuse or neglect.

We accept grants all year round. We have just done our latest grant round but we try and do them every three months, all applications entered after the last grant round will be considered by our board of trustees. Here is the link to submit a grant, please provide as much detail as possible.

You can apply on their behalf but we don’t have a date yet for the next grant round, we will be in touch when we have more of a idea.

Darlington ARQ  LGBT Service

Offer Counselling, peer support and awareness education sessions to find out more or to refer to the service see attached information. See also attached booklet Coming Out.

Mental Health Awareness 

See attached some useful information on how to reduce stress.

Witton Park Community Centre

Rainbows 7-10 years

Tuesday 6-7pm

Crafts, Activities and Outings

For more information contact 01388 309431

Baby Group

Please see attached poster for new baby group At Woodhouse Close Family Centre.

Free group for parents with children 0-12 months

Sessions include

Messy Play

Songs and Rhyme

Outdoor Play

Stories and much more.

If you are interested call Woodhouse Close Family Centre 03000 266390 

Little Chef Big Chef Cooking Workshops

Please see poster for amended timetable for cooking workshops in Shildon and Bishop Auckland area. 

DADLG  Countywide Camping opportunities

Ever wanted to try camping but don’t want to risk spending money on a tent in case the family don’t like it.

Please see attached for details on how to borrow a tent to sleep 5-6 people, sleeping bags and roll mats.

Contact 07592 366454

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Little Treasures

Little Treasure Autism Charity , supporting children and adults with autism.

Please see attached leaflet with information on all 17 groups running across the North East.

Parent Support, Peer support and Lego therapy as well as outings and visits are just some of the things Little Treasures offer.

Cheesy Waffles

The Cheesy Waffles Project is a provision for young people with additional needs age 11-30 years.

Although our project is predominantly for young people with learning difficulties it is not exclusive and everyone is welcome.

See attached for more information and activities.

Tommy’s Supporting siblings through a stillbirth

Information and advice  on supporting children when their sibling has been stillborn.

  • Recognise and acknowledge the child’s grief
  • Include the child in family rituals
  • Keep the child’s memory alive

For children under primary school age, primary school age and older children.

Please see above for link.

Autism Awareness at The Metro Centre

A new scheme aimed at raising awareness of autism is taking place at the Metro Centre.

Go to any of the information desks at the Metro Centre and you can hire a backpack which includes

  • Sunglasses
  • Ear defenders
  • Egg timers
  • Visual aids
  • Fidget sinners

And much more to support children with autism.

Orange wristbands are issued to make staff aware the child is autistic.

£10 refundable deposit.

Participating shops will reduce lighting, sound and tanoid announcements for quiet hour on the

First Tuesday of the month 10 am - 11am and

First  Saturday of the month 9am – 10am.


From 1st April visit the Help to Claim Team

Available at:

Barnard Castle Citizens Advice

Woodleigh, Flats Road,

Barnard Castle

DL12 8AA

Monday and Wednesday 10am – 4pm

Bishop Auckland Citizens Advice

Four Clocks Centre

15a Newgate Street

Bishop Auckland

DL14 7EH

Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 10 am – 4pm

Phone the National Helpline 0800 1448 444

Act Foundation/ Grants for People in Need

Act provides funding for a number of registered charities throughout the UK who have become charity partners.

Through these charity partners many individuals are supported with issues around Health and Wellbeing, Independent Living at Home, Respite, Care and Transition.

Please see attached a list of ACT partner charities that you may like to contact for help.

These include:

Household Equipment, Specialist Furniture and Home Adaptions.

Mobility Aids, Specialist Seating and Car Seats, Specialist Beds and Sleep Systems.


Specialist Equipment and Technology, Sensory Toys and Specialist IT equipment.

Mens Cree Willington

Activity group for men.

Photography, games , football gardening and much more.

Spectrum Leisure Centre , Willington

01388 747000

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Young Peoples activities in Willington and Crook

Please see attached a number of activities for young people 7+ in Willington and Crook.

Activities include youth café, roller hockey, army cadets and more.

All contact details on attachment.

Evenwood Youth Club

Held at the Community House , 31 Wellgarth, Evenwood

7 – 11 years Thursday 3.30pm – 5pm

12 – 18 years Thursday 6pm – 7.30pm

Contact Kate Barrignan 07786555095 / 01833 695780

Cockfield Youth Club

Held at Lipscombe Hall, Cockfield

7-11 years Wednesday 5pm – 7pm

12- 18 years Wednesday 6pm – 9pm

Entry 50p, tuck shop, pool table and games.

For more information call 01833 695780


Carers support  group for parents/carers of children 5-18years with eating disorders.


7TH March, the first Thursday of the month 6-8pm

Willington Open Door Church

Wesley Street

Willington, Crook


Contact Lisa on 07445307518

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ROAD (Reaching out across County Durham)

Please see below updated details for ROAD navigators.

Durham and Chester le Street    Sophie Bottomley       07812663034     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Consett                                            Hollie – Jo Chalmers   07812672668     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

South West Durham                     Chris Cowley                 07525813065    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

South West Durham                     Julia Fletcher                07736264979     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Stanley                                            Stephen Kettle             07710700996     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

East Durham                                  Alison Soulsby              07803079644     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Durham and Chester le Street    Sarah Menday              07715201689    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Bishop Auckland Crook Barnard Castle   Vicky Wood   07885460715     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

If you have a complex family or query you wish to discuss in private please ring to make appointment so rooms can be booked.

Auckland Youth and Community Centre- Girls Friendly Society

The Girls Friendly Society runs every Wednesday 5.30 – 7pm at Auckland Youth and Community Centre

Age group 10- 14 years

Weekly fee 50p

Have Fun – Develop new supportive friendships and take part in activities , be creative and enjoy themselves.

Get advice and support – Volunteers are there every week to offer a friendly ear and chat to girls and young women , we can also advise on how to seek professional help if needed.

Try something new – We encourage girls and young women to learn new practical skills and hobbies and even go on the odd trip.

To sign up daughter

Man Health New Groups

Mens support group for those suffering mentall health issues, depression and anxiety

Free to attend, you do not need an appointment or referral.

NO judgement will be made and there is NO pressure to talk.

The groups are ran by men with lived experiences of mental health issues and ages from 17 – 76 years old so there is a wide varied age range .

Barnard Castle The Witham 3 Horsemarket, Barnard Castle,DL12 8LY New Group starting Wednesday 30th January and every Wednesday thereafter.

Shildon Jubilee Fields Community Centre every Wednesday, Darlington, Quakers Meeting House  New Group starting 18th January and every Friday thereafter.

Spennymoor Youth and Community Centre, Rushmoor, Merrington View every Monday

For more detail visit the Man Health website or contact Louise Littlewood 07598139987.


Carers Support Group for Parents/Carers of children 5-18years with eating disorders.

Starting 7th March, then the first Thursday of the month  6pm – 8pm at  Willington Open Door Church Wesley Street Willington , Crook

For further details contact Lisa 07445307518 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Wheels to Work Discount

Discount offered to clients on the following contracts

Normal fee would be 50cc moped £25 per week and 12cc moped 330 per week.

For those on following contracts discounts apply

Zero hours  50% discount weekly fee

18 hours 50% discount weekly fee

Apprentices £10 per week

For contact details please attached flyer

Autie Mates-Adult Autism Support Group

Adult autism friendship group/drop in.

A peer support group for adults at the higher end of the spectrum.

A safe environment for adults pre and post diagnosis to chat and make friends.

Ferryhill St Lukes Church

Fridays, every fortnight starting 22nd March

12.30 – 2.30pm

Contact Dawn – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Gateshead Club House

Every second Wednesday of the month 11-1pm

Contact Angela  - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Wheels to Work

Please see attached flyer.

The Wheels to work scheme currently have bikes/ mopeds ready for Bishop Auckland and Shildon.

For clients 16+ to support them getting to and from work/training.

Steps4Success a new way of learning for 16-18 years

Step4 Success programme provides tailored support for young people to increase their confidence and qualifications.

It also provides opportunities for work experience.

Young people work towards NOCN certificate in Skills Employment, Training and Personal Development as well as Functional Skills in Maths and English.

Please see attachment for more details.

Sherburn House Funding Individual Hardship (Relief in Need)

(Managed by County Durham Community Foundation)

  • £300 grants available for individuals or families
  • Funding essential domestic equipment (eg. Cookers, washing machines ,beds etc.)
  • North East wide (recipients must live between the River Tweed and River Tees)

Applications are invited from professionals working with clients who are experiencing extreme hardship and are in extreme social and financial need. It is likely that they have been unable to obtain funding from other sources.

Applications must be submitted by organisations willing to undertake a supervised spend (purchasing items on behalf of your client)

Foe full details please visit the house-fund-individuals-hardship-relief-in-need

Prescription information for Universal credit claimants

“At present, NHS prescriptions do not have a Tick Box option for someone claiming Universal Credit.

There have been examples of claimants choosing the ESA option and as a result have received a £135 penalty notice.

Until a new print is available claimants on UC should tick option K indicating JSA in payment.

This is the workaround which has been issued to Pharmacies.”

Wear Wellbeing Crook
Travellers Rest Crook Mindfulness Meditation Group Starting Tuesdays and Saturdays 3.30pm in the lounge Relaxation and meditation is scientifically proven to improve sleep, mental health and wellbeing. Learn techniques to help manage pain and also tap into the feel good endorphins that happen with exercise – without leaving your chair. Learn to relax and manage your life in a more peaceful way.

Wellbeing for Life - Crook
Blue Stone Craft Group - Every Tuesday 1.30pm Blue Stone Tea Shop · Meet new friends · Learn new skills · Share your own skills · Enjoy a cuppa To find out more please contact Liz Oakes on 07584703815, or Catherine Taylor 07795347596.

Veg out in Barney Barnard Castle TCR hub
Veg out in Barney started as a rotary project in 2013 planting out vegetables and herbs so that the community could help themselves to free produce.
The purpose of the garden is threefold
1.To produce free fruit, veg and herbs for the local community so that people can help themselves to the produce.
2. To teach gardening skills (free of charge) to both adults and children.
3. To provide a therapeutic atmosphere that everyone can enjoy.
Next year we have plans to provide tailored training sessions for all ages and abilities to ensure that the garden is used to its full potential.
Please visit us – everyone is welcome.
For more details contact Barnard Castle TCR hub on 01833 690150

SEND in Early Years useful contacts
Following the SEND in early years workshops please see above attachment for useful contacts.

Useful websites and links and Support groups
Making changes together County Durham have put together some useful websites and links to support parents who have children and young people with additional needs. See attached

TCH Hub Barnard Castle
Yoga Bunnies This fabulous yoga class for little ones takes place in the Dance Studio of the Hub every Tuesday at 10am and Thursday at 4pm and 4.30pm Follow Sarah on Facebook or phone her on 07402221503 in order to reserve a place.

Housing solutions Referral form-
Referral form for Triple p programme and Staying cool
Request for Family Intervention referral