December 2014 Newsletter

Classes taking a break during January 2015
All our PMP classes are now taking a break until February 2015. The Monday class restarts on 2 February, and the Friday class begins on 6 February. Maureen and her Committee would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

2014 Annual General Meeting
Our Get-together and Annual General Meeting took place on Monday, 1 December.

Certificates awarded
Certificates were presented recently for finger-spelling to the following adults: Wendy, Barbara, Claire, Veronica, Doreen and Debbie. Five children also received certificates; they were Ben, Naomi, Catherine, Joseph and Pheboe.

Subtitled films at the Mount Pub
Subtitled films are shown for free at the Mount Pub on Manchester Road in Southport every Thursday afternoon at 2.30pm. If you decide to go along with friends for lunch, it is a good idea to ring 01704 542421 to reserve a table. There is a special £4.95 meal deal, which includes a drink and ice-cream.

November 2013 Newsletter

2013 Annual General Meeting
Our last Monday session for 2013 will be on 25 November. We will have our AGM then as well. Maureen will also bring some cakes. Classes re-start on 13 January 2014.

Lip-reading practice
If you need to practice your lip-reading skills, please check out this website:

Teaching BSL in Germany
Stefan, teacher of sign language to 10-12 year olds in Germany, is introducing BSL and English to his pupils. He has created lip pattern symbols to go with Valerie Sutton’s Sign Writing symbols. He has been watching Maureen’s DVD Basic Sign Language and has now started to teach the children English and BSL He has produced BSL Signwriting alphabet and also our group’s name in sign writing, and they are on our Facebook as well as in the Great Britain dictionary on

Talk for Trifoil Group
In September Maureen did a talk for the Trifoil Group in Crossens. She received a donation of £35, and sold some items raising £13.50.

Community Development Foundation grant
We have received £1,500 from the Community Development Foundation ( This money is to be used towards venue costs, Internet use, travel and an e-book for sign language apps.

December 2012 Newsletter

Merry Christmas!
Maureen wishes all members a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Donation from Mayor’s Fund
We have received £203.68 from the Mayor of Sefton’s Fund.

Volunteer support in the community
Jonny [level 3] is going into a Birkdale infant school to support a teacher who is teaching the children the alphabet and some basic signing.

Helen Pinch [level 2] has supported a deaf lady while she attended a course on breast-feeding as the mother wants to be able to help other mothers-to-be who are deaf. Helen is also helping Maureen at Prestfield School where they are doing 4 sessions teaching Mums.

Maureen has been teaching the Brownies & Guides to sign Silent Night at the Salvation Army for the Carol Service on Sunday 16 December. Maureen is also teaching St Philips’ teachers to sign Away in a Manger so they can teach the children for their Carol Service.

Classes update
Our last sessions for this year were on Friday 8 December & Monday 10 December. Classes restart on Monday 14 January & Friday 18 January.

From Friday 23 November we started meeting at the Salvation Army. This is because the Joint Learning Partnership need the room we were using at the Shakespeare Centre. They need this room for extra free training courses for young people over 16 years old.

Any members who haven’t attended for a while are requested to return any resources they have. Please return them to Maureen at the Salvation Army on Shakespeare Street or ring her on 01704 546626 or text 07960 984306 to arrange drop-off/pick-up.

Our Monday evening class at the Salvation Army has moved to the Blue Room, which is nearer to the street.

We have a publicity advert in this year’s Southport Council Map. Please keep this if it is delivered to you. We have an advert in it, which tells people about our classes, and the pink logo marks Shakespeare Street on the map. This can be given to newcomers and people outside of the area.

2012 Annual General Meeting
Our AGM was held on Monday, 24 September. Click the link to download the minutes of that meeting.

Interview in Hearing Times
Maureen has been interviewed by Hearing Times. The article is in the Autumn edition of the newspaper.

Awareness and talks
gave a talk to the Rotary Club on 1 August. On 2 August we had an awareness stand at ASDA from 1 till 4pm.

The talk in Thornton in July went extremely well. We had donations of over £100.

On Thursday 5 July we had a stand at P.A.C.T.S. in the Gild Hall, Formby from 10am till 2pm.

Stephen passes BSL Level 1
Stephen Walker, one of our volunteers, has passed his BSL Level 1 exams. Congratulations to him from us all.


June 2012 Newsletter

Change to Monday class venue
Starting Monday 2 July our evening classes will be held at the Salvation Army’s new church on Shakespeare Street. This will be our permanent Monday evening venue. The church has disabled access and toilet as well as internet facilities and a large parking area. The cost will be considerably cheaper, which also includes our refreshments.

There is a cafe which is open weekdays until 4pm, and prices are very reasonable.

Deaf Awareness Week
This week is Deaf Awareness Week. To highlight Deaf Awareness Week, PMP will be raising awareness at Ron’s Therapeutic Art Group Exhibition at Mersey Boat Club, Pilling Lane, Lydiate on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th May. Maureen and Mavis will be available to give out information.

Maureen will also be giving a talk on 16 May at a church near Thornton.

Updated dictioiary on
Maureen has added 100s of words into the dictionary and literature sections of When you go on the website, the left Union Jack flag is the dictionary and the right Union Jack flag is the literature section.

Not open on Bank Holidays!
Just a reminder that the Marian Centre is NOT open on Bank Holiday Mondays.

Our last date at the Centre before the summer holidays will be 25 June. The Centre will be closed ALL of July and August. However, we will be meeting at a local pub instead. Details at a later date.

We re-open at the Marian Centre on 3 September until 26 November, which will be our Christmas get-together. We will then re-open on 14 January 2013.

January 2012 Newsletter

Fliers and posters at Southport College
PMP members will be giving out fliers and fingerspelling posters from their stand at Southport College at lunchtime on Monday 30 January.

Roundelay Choir
Our grateful thanks go to Roundelay Choir. We have received a donation of £150 from them. The choir will be singing with Marshside Brass Band at a fundraiser concert of Christmas music to raise funds for Queenscourt Hospice. This takes place on Thursday 15 December at 7.30pm at Marshside Road Methodist Church. Refreshments will be served and a collection taken on the evening.

Christmas and New Year plans
Our Christmas get-together is on Monday 12 December at 6-8pm. This will be the last session of the year with mince pies, nibbles and chocolates. Please let Maureen know if you’ll be attending the Christmas get-together or just popping in for half an hour. Maureen needs to know numbers and what you’ll be bringing.

After the Christmas break, we re-open on Monday 16 January 2012, subject to weather conditions. Our free mini-courses start in the New Year; Monday 23 January at the Marian Centre 6-8pm and Friday 27 January at Joint Learning Partnership, 1.30-3.30pm. If you know anyone who is interested, please get their name to Maureen. Places are limited. As we have the space and resources at both centres, signing sessions to improve skills and support for learning other comunication skills will continue.

£100 from Mayor’s Fund
We have received £100 from the Mayors’ Fund. This will pay for the first 3 sessions at the Marian Centre in the New Year.

Making donations to PMP via bank
If you’d like to make a donation to help us continue our work, this can be done via your bank and payments should be made to Practice Makes Perfect with account number 35540931. The sort code is 60-20-11.

Adactus Housing Award
Many thanks to Adactus Housing Association who have awarded us £400 from their Neighbourhood Fund Grant. This is a restricted award and is for stationery.

NatWest CommunityForce and Adactus Housing
We have been shortlisted for the NatWest CommunityForce. This supports all kinds of local projects and charities throughout England and Wales. You can find out more or vote for PMP here:

We have also been shortlisted for the Adactus Housing Foundation. Maureen is being interviewed by their panel on 15 September.

New venue for Friday class
PMP is opening again at their new premises this Friday, 9 September 1.30-3pm at the Shakespeare Centre, Shakespeare Street, Southport, PR8 5AB. Use the new lift on your left in the corner; it now goes right to the Joint Learning Centre on the 4th floor. New learners always welcome. Many thanks to the Joint Learning Partnership for their continued support.

Friday class closed for fortnight
The Friday afternoon class is now closed for 2 weeks as the Joint Learning Partnership is moving to Shakespeare Street. They will be based on the 3rd floor at the Shakespeare Centre. We expect to re-start at the new venue on 9 September.

2011 Annual General Meeting
Just to remind everyone that our Annual General Meeting is on Monday, 26 September at 6.15pm at the Marian Centre, Bath St North. The early start is to allow some of our members to leave early to start their BSL Level 1 course at Shoreline Church.

Our learning and practice session will be on as usual at 6pm prior to the A.G.M. Any questions for ‘Any Other Business’ to be included in the Agenda should be sent before 26 August to Everyone welcome.

June 2011 Newsletter

General PMP news
Welcome to Joanne, our new volunteer, who is doing a wonderful job making our refreshments on Monday evenings.

The recent talk for the U3A group was very successful. Over 70 people listened to Maureen give a short talk about why and how our group came to be started. They then joined in to learn fingerspelling and the basics of signing by singing and signing Sing a Rainbow. Everyone had the opportunity of receiving free RNID fingerspelling posters and literature. A cheque for £50 was donated to PMP. One U3A member said: “That’s the most enjoyable and best talk we have ever had.”

Maureen has been adding interesting sites and information she has found to our group’s Facebook page. Please join and pass on information about our Facebook page.

Members, please have a look at this new website – – it may be helpful to you.

We have recently purchased baby signing books and flash cards for both children and adults to use at our classes.

Sutton Signwriting at Gallaudet
For those who attended our Sutton Signwriting Workshop, you may be interested to know that Sutton Signwriting is to be presented at Gallaudet University.

Sign language practice at Shoreline Church
Sign language practice at Shoreline Church on Mornington Road takes place on Wednesdays 7.30-8.30pm. This new group, organised by Gary Foulds, got off to a good start last Wednesday [13 April] with Maureen presenting a workshop.

The group is for anyone wanting to learn the basics of sign language as well as pracising with others. Christian signs will also be included. PMP members are welcome to attend and share their skills too.

Nine new people at Monday’s class
Yesterday at our Monday session [18 April] we had 9 new people attending, some of them children, bringing the total attendance to 25. It was a great evening.

Sadly, we are closed for the Bank Holidays. In the meantime, keep practising and see you after the holidays.

Trailer for new short film My Song
A trailer for a new short film called My Song has been released. It was funded by BSLBT and will be shown online and on digital TV on 23 May.

Camping weekend with Sign Circle
Sign Circle is hosting a camping weekend on 22-25 July at Longridge Showground. Events taking place include a drumming workshop, a play bus for kids, a climbing tower, archery, power kite flying, signer Giuseppe Giuranna and deaf comedian John Smith. Visit for more info and order your tickets if you wish to attend.

Learn to Sign Group at Shoreline Church
Shoreline Church is to start a Learn to Sign Group. Maureen will present the first workshop – “An Introduction to Signing” – to church members on Wednesday, 13 April at 7.30pm.

The group members want to learn the basics of sign language to be able to communicate with deaf members of the community as well as Christian signs to use in church. The new group will be encouraged to continue learning and practising sign language with the support of Practice Makes Perfect members on Monday evenings.

If you are interested in becoming a part of the church group, please contact Gary Foulds on 07540 777188 or at our Monday evening class.

Diversity Day at Southport College
Diversity Day at Southport College on Wednesday, 9 March. PMP information stand in entrance 11am-3pm. Workshop in conference room at 12pm. Volunteers required to man the stand for an hour or two to give out RNID fingerspelling and sign language booklets. Please get in touch.

Census 2011
Census 2011 takes place on 27 March. Help for deaf people with filling in the form will be available at the Information & Awareness Day on 26 March.

Subtitles now available on ITV Player
Subtitles are now available on the ITV Player for programmes such as Coronation Street and Emmerdale. It is their aim to have subtitles available for 70% of catch-up content.

January 2011 newsletter

Information and Awareness Day
PMP is hosting an Information & Awareness Day on 26 March at the Lakeside Leisure Centre in Southport. This free event will run from 11am-4pm. Fairways car parking is just over the road for £1 all day.

The event aims to raise awareness to what our voluntary group has to offer for people of all ages: classes, training, workshops introducing the basics of fingerspelling, lip-reading, and sign language etc. at minimum cost. Also to raise awareness to the services, groups, organisations, training and support that is available for people who have a sensory inpairment and also to support their hearing families and friends.

We want services, teaching and communication skills groups that support people with a sensory impairment to be involved. Even businesses that supply equipment etc. If you know of or run a group or service that could be included in our event please contact Maureen on 01704 546626 or 07960 984306 (text or voice).

Please forward these event details to all your contacts and spread the news. Our Facebook page and website will be updated.

New wall display at JLC
jlpnewNew wall display and new banners set up at Joint Learning Centre, our Friday afternoon venue at 54 Bath Street.

Fire alarm alerter
An important fire alarm product for buildings so deaf people are warned:

Sign-writing blog
Suzanne, the SignWriting tutor from Holland, who presented our Workshop has started a blog to help others learn. You can find it at

2010 Dada Festival
Dada Festival takes place in Liverpool 18 November – 3 December.

Mayor’s Charity Fund
Many thanks to the Mayor’s charity fund for the donation of £300 we have just received. This will enable us to continue to provide Communication and Sign language skills at our venues. Members contributions are still only £2 per session if you are working, concessions £1. Refreshments are free.

Learn to Sign Week
babybump2010Maureen Doyle and volunteers from Practice Makes Perfect, recent winners of The Spirit of Merseyside Award, raised awareness for “Learn to Sign Week” at the Baby and Bump event in Southport on 2 October.

Over 200 R.N.I.D. sign language booklets together with Deaf and Deaf/blind fingerspelling cards were given out to the hundreds of mums and dads who attended with their babies. Most of the parents expressed an interest in wanting to learn “baby signing” in order to communicate with their babies before they could speak.

Maureen said “Congratulations and well done Amy and all those who participated to make it such a wonderful day and great success. This was the best attended event organised by a member of the public that we have ever been apart of and I’m sure we will be having an increase in numbers attending our group to learn sign language and other communication skills.”

The event was organised by Amy Thompson to raise funds for Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

2010 Annual General Meeting
Our 2010 AGM was held on Monday, 20 September. Click the link to download the 2010 Annual Report.

September 2010 Newsletter

Click to see full image

Spirit of Merseyside Awards
Practice Makes Perfect was shortlisted for the Grassroots Project of the Year at the Spirit of Merseyside Awards.

The prestigious Spirit of Merseyside Awards took place at Liverpool Cathedral on Thursday 17 June 2010. This event celebrated the hard work, dedication and effort of groups who have received funding from the Community Foundation for Merseyside over the past 12 months.

Also shortlisted for the Project of the Year Award were Southport Sub Aqua, Southport Formby Athletes and Bluey Baloo.

The winners were decided by an independent panel of judges, who visited the groups to ask questions about their projects. New Reality Media filmed all the groups and the films were shown at the event as part of the award celebration, which included a 3 course meal and entertainment.

Practice Makes Perfect won the Grassroots Project of the Year Award at Liverpool Cathedral last Thursday. Well done to everyone! Photos from the Awards here.

Sutton Sign-writing Workshop
Our first Sutton Sign Writing workshop was held on 27 August. Suzanne Pach (from Holland) was the tutor for the day. Included to take home were some new SSW learning/teaching aids & resources just made to aid learning. Maureen also included her own “Basics of Sign Language” DVD so users could see her technique of helping others to learn. This was filmed live at one of our sessions.

Photos from the Sutton Sign Writing Workshop are here.

The new BSL SignWriting Dictionary has been set up by Valerie Sutton, the creator of SignWriting and it is online now for British Sign Language users to learn from and to add their own signs. Free downloads of lessons in SignWriting here.

Diversity at Southport College
scoll2010Our stall at Southport College was very well received. 100s of fingerspelling posters, bookmarks and sign language booklets were given away at the event in April.

Thanks to Mavis for volunteering for the day and looking after the stall whilst Maureen did three workshops for both pupils and teachers.


Event at Bishop David Shepherd School
The event in March 2010 at Bishop David Shepherd School was a great success. Maureen presented three 45 minute workshops to 6 classes and their teachers. The school has planned to watch our DVD on Mondays to learn and practice signing together. Everyone joined in and had a fun time. Thanks to Jenny Iveson for volunteering and being there at all the sessions.

Vowels & Alphabet video
Maureen managed to upload a short video she made with a borrowed camera. It’s entitled Vowels & Alphabet – click here to watch.

Christmas Party 2009
tinaxmasteddyOur Christmas party was held on 14 December. Thanks to everyone for bringing contributions for the buffet table. Sheila brought hot sausage rolls.

It was an opportunity to celebrate the new funding from The Big Lottery fund. They awarded us £6.115 for running costs for 1 year. We have received the cheque.

Carol G. popped in to see us and made a donation of £20 towards our funds.

Keziah sang a couple of songs for us, including “How much is that doggie in the window?” with her poodle puppy Ruby, who joined in with barks at the right places as Keziah has been training her. We sang and signed “Silent Night”, our favourite Carol.

Tina won the big Christmas Teddy.

We received £6,115 from Awards for All. It will make a difference to our group as it will help to cover the running costs for 2010 (excluding venue hire).

We received a donation of £150 from the Duchy of Lancaster. Many thanks for this kind addition to our funds.

Meal at the Pageant
pageantdec09Funded by Grassroots, our meal at the Pageant was marvelous. 22 people attended and every one really enjoyed the evening. The food was fantastic.

It’s been a while since we have seen Hilary and Ruth so we were all happy they made it to the meal. It was lovely to see them again. My thanks to everyone for making it a special evening. Thanks to Margie for bringing and looking after Mary from Crosby. Our youngest learner Lucas was there too with his Mum and Grandmother, Maria, our Treasurer.

The day after I received a magnificent bouquet of flowers from Mary. Many thanks to Mary for them. My thanks also to Hilary and Ruth for their Thank You card.

Annual General Meeting 2009
We held our 2009 AGM on Monday, 21 September. The 2009 Annual Report for the year has been published.

YAT Group Workshop
YATgroupaug09In August 2009 members of the YAT Group attended Workshops at the Joint Learning Centre in Yellowhouse Lane, Southport.

Their intensive training in the basics of Sign Language and other communications skills were well received. On Day 2 the students were able to sign questions and have a general conversation with our deaf volunteer Mavis Husbands. It is a great achievement for them all.

Monitoring forms for training courses are always completed and these show that everyone enjoyed the workshops. All forms are available to view on request.

BSL e-book for iPhone/iPod
Nick Sturley, in association with DeafEducate, has announced the introduction of the world’s first ever British Sign Language (BSL) ebook app for the Apple iPhone and iPod Touch, covering the first four volumes of his Tales From Signtown fairytales.

August 2009 Newsletter

Funding news
A £1,000 cheque has been received from P. H. Holt Foundation. Many thanks go to them for this funding, which will help our group tremendously.

Thanks to a Grassroots Award of £4,710, PMP will be able to secure their Marian Centre venue for the next 3 years. The award will also fund BSL Level 2 training for volunteer Mavis Husbands.

millylaptopMilly using laptopOur new laptop, paid for with a donation of £500 from the Henby Trust, has been very popular at each of our venues. Members have been using the fingerspelling DVD quiz setting at its slowest level, and this has helped with receptive skills.

The photo shows Milly, our newest member, using the laptop at the Joint Learning Centre on Yellow House Lane.

We thank the Henby Trust for their very kind contribution.

Liverpool Hard of Hearing Club
Starting from 12 May, the Liverpool Hard of Hearing Club are holding Coffee Mornings fortnightly at Merseyside Society for Deaf People on Queens Drive. This runs from 11am to 2pm, and will continue until 14 July when it closes for the summer break. It re-opens on 8 September. The club also meets Wednesday evenings 7-10pm.

10-year-old Dominic Woods has received his first certificate for finger spelling the alphabet. He accomplished this within half an hour of attending his first class at Practice Makes Perfect.

Jennifer Iveson on the Friday course received her first finger spelling certificate on 1 May.

Colette McCoy has finally received her BSL Level 1 certificate.

Some of our other members have also received certificates for passing BSL 101 and 102. Photos of all these people receiving their certificates can be found on this page celebrating their achievements.

Brighter Living Partnership
Maureen and Mavis attended another Brighter Living Partnership meeting on 30 April. Many excellent networking contacts were made with various groups, including the police, the Diabetes Group, the newly formed Transition Group and many others. Our handouts are to be inserted into the BLP information packs that they deliver to members of the community.

Art Exhibition
mdmhartMavis and Maureen at their recent Art group exhibition raising awareness to the work of Practice Makes Perfect and what it has to offer.

Hand made cards were sold to raise funds.

Death by Deafness
Alex Nowak is directing a short film about a teenage deaf girl who goes through depression, isolation and neglect with devastating consequences. The film, Death by Deafness, has some talented deaf and hearing actors involved. There will be signing in parts of the film, but subtitles will be present throughout so all will understand. More on the project here.

Computer program helps lip-reading skills
A computer program* to help people learn to lipread has been developed by David Smith. More information is available on this website. It has been added to our Links page.

*Please note that the program will only run on Windows computers that have the Microsoft .NET Framework installed; Windows Vista has this installed by default, but other versions do not. It can be downloaded from the Microsoft website.

CVS Annual General Meeting
Maureen Doyle and Mavis Husbands recently attended the Annual General Meeting of Southport Community Volunteer Service. They had display boards and many of our leaflets were given out. They had the opportunity to chat with members of various groups.

Diversity event at Southport College
On 1 & 2 April, PMP were at Southport College’s first Diversity Event.

Maureen Doyle and Mavis Husbands were at the college from 9.30am till 3.30pm both days. Display boards and table information leaflets were available for the students and staff.

Maureen gave talks on both days to the students and staff.

Joint Learning Centre
From Friday 3 April, we began meeting at the Joint Learning Centre on Yellow House Lane from 1.30pm till 3pm instead of the Arts Centre.

The sessions at Southport Arts Centre on Thursdays are therefore now cancelled. The Monday sessions continue as normal at the Marian Centre on Bath Street North from 6 to 8pm.

18 young people attended a Sign Language and Deaf Awareness session at the Joint Learning Centre on Yellow House Lane on 11 March. Maureen thanks the centre for the donation of £35, and for allowing us to use the centre for our classes from April 2009.

BSL Zone
OFCOM has welcomed the launch of the Community Channel’s BSL Zone, which is dedicated to showing TV programmes presented in BSL.

These signed programmes are broadcast on Wednesdays & Saturdays 8am, 2pm, 8pm & 2am, and Sundays 6am, 12pm, 6pm & 12am. You can find these programmes on Freeview 87, Sky 539 and Virgin TV 233.

Over the last few months we have had 9 new members, including 3-year-old Jacob and 10-year-old Dominic. We have an audiologist (Level 2) and a support worker for a deaf student (Level 3).

Dominic mastered the finger spelling alphabet in just half an hour, and then started helping another new member Pam, who is 77, with her hand shapes with the finger alphabet. This was an inspirational “bridging the age gap” moment. Dominic received his first certificate on 11 May.

Earlier in the year we welcomed two new members; Reetha from Finland, who introduced us to Finnish signs whilst learning BSL, and Joya from Poland.

We welcome them all.

ITV Signpost
ITV SignPost has a new website, bringing the best contemporary children’s stories to deaf children. gives free, online access to the wonderful world of children’s literature with BSL, sound, animation and text. And there’s a wealth of storytelling information and advice for parents, carers and teachers.

The website is supported by and features some of the UK’s best known names, including Dame Evelyn Glennie, Dame Helen Mirren, Robbie Coltrane, Sir Trevor MacDonald, Kevin Whately, Monty Panesar, Ricky Hatton and deaf author Joyce Dunbar.

CACDP changes its name
CACDP is now known as Signature.

January 2009 Newsletter

Christmas buffet
It was nice to see so many people, old and new faces, at the Christmas Buffet on 15 December. Everyone enjoyed themselves. Congratulations to Aimee, Nicola and Sabra on receiving their BSL certificates. A special ‘well done’ also goes to Sharon on her fingerspelling skills.

We are still awaiting certificates for Charlotte, Colette, Jacob and Sheela who all passed Level 1. Ryan passed 101 & 102.

Thanks to everyone who brought refreshments and who helped in any way during the evening.

We have received a donation of £50 from the Yorkshire Building Society, which is Maureen’s own building society. This is the second time they have donated to us. Many thanks to them.

A walking book was donated by Delia, a past member, and was sold for £20. This has been added to funds.

We are delighted to say that the Mayor’s Fund has sent us £300. Again it has saved the day. The money has been allocated to pay three months rent at the Marian Centre, and a cheque was sent to them. An acknowledgement and thank you note has been sent to the Mayor’s office.

Thanks go to JAK Books Ltd for sending us a free copy of Easy Way Guide to Signing.

Relaxation DVD in BSL
The first ever self-help relaxation DVD in British Sign Language has been produced by a group of specialist health care professionals together with Eyegaze Ltd, a company specialising in producing accessible information. The DVD explains the nature of stress, its causes and effects and also includes some innovative relaxation exercises to help the viewer find peace of mind – all in BSL (English subtitles are also available). The DVD, Stress and Relaxation, can be ordered on-line at at £24.95.

Deaf BSL Camping Festival
Sign Circle are holding a Deaf BSL Camping Festival on 22-25 May 2009 at Longridge, Preston. For more info, please visit their website.

Coping with heart attacks
The British Heart Foundation have produced a video about heart attacks. There is a signed version, and you can watch it at

Online learner support pack for BSL 101
Signature, formerly CACDP, have announced the launch of their Online Learner Support Pack for BSL 101. This is a free resource for everyone starting to do BSL 101, and is a great way to help learners get off to a good start in learning British Sign Language.

The Online Learner Support Pack lets learners access videos of individual signs and sentences to help them practise between classes. Each of the topics from BSL 101 are covered, which include the manual alphabet, numbers, transport, meeting people, weather, and directions. There is also an example BSL 101 assessment.

To access the BSL 101 Online Learning Support Pack, simply visit their website here. After registering your details, you will have access to hundreds of BSL videos over the web.

Annual General Meeting 2008
We held our AGM on Monday, 15 September.

All Officers were prepared to continue in their roles for another year, and were duly elected. The accounts were presented, and showed the group to be financially healthy.

The 2008 Annual Report has been published.

Many thanks to everyone who attended, and to all those who have supported us throughout the year.

Out and about
Maureen was at Parenting 2000 on 9 October to raise awareness of our group, and leaflets were given out with the deaf fingerspelling alphabet.

On 17 October, Maureen & Mavis attended the CVS AGM & Funding Event at the Southport Conference Centre.

Learning the Highway Code
We have purchased a copy of the new DVD helping BSL users to learn the Highway Code. If any sign language user is interested in learning to drive, we can arrange for you to watch it on our DVD player at the Marian Centre on a Monday evening.