A History of Upton Community Care
Upton Community Care was founded in 1975 as a local 'good neighbour' scheme to help, particularly, the elderly and the housebound.
County Hall had approached John Mortimer, the local Social Worker, and The Rev. Antony King and they in turn contacted the leaders of local organisations. A group met at the Graftons, with Mrs. Christopher, the Warden, as hostess, and agreed to send out a Questionnaire to every household and organisation in Upton, asking people what they wanted from their community.
The response to the questionnaire led to the publication of what came to be known as the Upton Compendium, which listed all the activities that were available to Uptonians as well as a host of other useful information. However, it was felt by the steering group that there was a need to provide practical help to those who were no longer capable of doing household jobs or perhaps gardening. A group calling themselves Upton Community Care decided to meet every two months to discuss needs and to report on jobs completed. The local Social Workers, nurses and the police were important members. Sgt. Peter Burley was the first Chairman, followed by Mrs. Mollie Eddie, and then, on the illness of Mollie Eddie, Mrs. Joan Pearson.
In 1989 UCC had to move out of the Graftons because the room was needed for Bingo! The group then met in Mrs. Pearson's kitchen and all phone calls came to her house.
The Ambulance Strike in 1990 created an urgent need for transport to medical appointments of all kinds. 48 people volunteered for this and an answerphone had to be installed in Mrs. Pearson's kitchen to cope with all the requests for help. In 1991 the number of volunteers rose to 69 so the landing above Talbot-Cooper's chemist's shop became 'The Office'. When Mr. Talbot-Cooper retired Mr. Tony Atkinson generously offered a spacious room above the Map Shop, with a large table and a filing cabinet, and today this is still our present office.
In 1992 UCC was granted Charitable status and a Committee of six was elected to be Trustees. Mrs. Pearson set up a system of filing cards, a Day Book, Identity cards for Drivers and windscreen notices to facilitate parking. She also persuaded the County Council to give a Grant of £1200 for two years to put UCC on a firm financial footing.
Currently, UCC is supported by Grants from the County Council, South Worcestershire Primary Care Trust, Upton Town Council, and the Parish Councils of Hanley Castle, Ripple and Little Malvern & Welland. But UCC depends very much on Goodwill donations from local organisations and from individuals. Many clients give over the odds when they pay the volunteer driver and these extras are welcome additions to UCC funds. The margin between income and expenditure is never very large but so far UCC has remained solvent. The number of volunteer drivers today is sufficient to mainly provide transport to and from medical appointments and we are always seeking additional drivers for this purpose.
The Office is open from 9.30am to 11.30 am on weekdays. Telephone 01684 593633.
The current Committee is as follows:
Chairman: Mrs. Sue Spackman