Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Holding Room, The Guildhall, St. Giles Square, Northampton, NN1 1DE. View directions

Contact: Partnerships and Communities Team  0300 330 7000 e-mail:

No. Item


Welcomes, introductions and apologies pdf icon PDF 185 KB

Additional documents:


ATTENDANCE: Martin De Rosario (MDR, Co-Chair), Michael Macleod (MM, NBC), Cllr Phil Larratt (PL, Co-Chair), Debbie MacColl (DM, NBC), Martin Page (MP, DWP), Gillian Cony (GC, NBPF), Carl Weininger (CW, NBPF), Helen Elliott-Mainwaring (HEM, NGH), Cllr Julie Davenport (JD, NBC), Ziporah Acheampong (ZA, MIND).


APOLOGIES: Larry Barber, Barbara Barber.


Minutes and Matters Arising

Please use the link below to view the Minutes of the previous meeting.


PL explained to the forum that the future of the forum and all community forums will be decided on by the new West Unitary Council in 2020.


Lucy Somers - iDID Adventure


Purple Tuesday


Purple Tuesday – national initiative. Make it better for people with disabilities to shop.


We have missed this year’s deadlines but we are looking to do one in Northampton before next year.


MP – Purple Tuesday is an attempt to make business more accessible to those with disabilities. It’s to do with the purple pound which is disabled peoples spending money. It’s about making this more accessible by having stock better placed for freer movement for the customers etc. Parking is included in this.


DM – There is a survey on survey monkey to see what people would like and how the future can be better shaped for people with disabilities with regards to shopping.


DM – There is not a closing date as of now, people will be surveyed on International Disability Day too.


CW – It would be good to do more of these on days where shops are usually less busy, not even necessarily on the same day.


HEM - Primark are usually quite good at helping those in a wheelchair avoid the queue.


Morrison’s Autism hour Saturday 9-10 to reduce sensory overload.


DM – It sounds very possible and if we get good feedback and support, town centre management will look to push for this day.


MP – The Trafford centre in Manchester is a good example.


MDR – It would be good to invite Morrison’s to promote their Saturday morning.


HEM – Have you thought about Disabled Go/AccessAble?

DM – Not yet, this is in its infancy but that’s why it has been raised in this forum.


DM – If we could get businesses to engage with us we could try and push for this to happen once a month.


CW – Some shops staff are not often trained, staff awareness is important.


ACTION: DM to send NGH the poster electronically.


HEM – New point of contact for organisations regarding equality.


MP – tried to link in with CCG but their support wasn’t great so to link in with NGH would be great.


ACTION: Add HEM to be added onto a future agenda.

HEM - NGH looking to link in with services such as Deaf Connect to make translations services better.


CW – there are some medical forms where you can nominate a person to listen to things on your behalf.


System shows if people need a particular language etc. which may help but this is seen by the office staff and not the medical professionals.


International Day of Disabled Persons


CW to e-mail DW with car parking details for the event on the 3rd.


DM all the stands will be in the Great Hall, there will be 3 different performances. There will be tea, coffee and cakes in the court room and this can be used and will be a quiet space.


Press release will be going out soon, it is the first time an event has been like this so we are testing the waters.


CW – Will look to bring a scooter as well.


Community Information Exchange


Northampton Mind – building better opportunities project. Helping people gain the skills to work. Looking to get referrals in, there is confidence building activities, CV workshops etc.


JD – Lots of tribunals, a lot of people with illnesses are told that they are able to work when they are not.


MP: the rate of those overturned are around 40 percent.


MP: There are some issues with the way the literature is worded as there is less focus on mental health and more so on physical health. People will go to these meetings on a good day also, and will most likely cancel on a bad day so it is difficult.


HEM - PIP are usually good as they will come out to you.


ACTION: add welfare reforms to a future agenda.


CW: sometimes, things you have been put in place like certain pensions and funds then have to be interviewed again, which makes no sense as the agreements have been in place for a long time and certain conditions will never get better.


MP: I think that was deliberate to check in and see if anything has changed.


Helen – New in post, information will be on the website, equality and diversity tab.


CW – Hydrotherapy programme at the Chris Moody Centre for Post-Polio, also transfers to MS and CFS patients. £10 a session, subsidised by local rotary clubs. Member working on a course that disabled people can do, for those who should not over exercise but need some stimulation. Hydrotherapy going so well that Birmingham University have endorsed it. Chris Moody centre is at the Moulton agricultural college. Michael Jackson is the welfare officer and he has all the information.


Polio meeting at Wellingborough Tesco last Tuesday of every month.


MP – Universal Credit has rolled out, new claims only at the minute. Those currently claiming will be migrated over in 2020. Replaces JSE IS ESA WTC CTC and Housing.


Fraud cases for benefits depends on the evidence they can gather, a lot to take into consideration such as malicious complaints etc.


DM – Special showing of Breathe at Northampton Film House on December 3rd.


MM – International Men’s Day tomorrow 17th from 11am-2pm on the Market Square.


HEM – Please send any events prior and this can be promoted within NGH.



Items for Next and Future Meetings


Welfare Reforms – MP could talk about this.


CW – very few agencies that can give you advice quickly.


JD – idverde – would be good to get in, certain sheltered accommodations are not having their lawns cut. People don’t seem to understand who is responsible for what.


ACTION: MM to invite idverde.


CW – some of this work is being taken over by voluntary groups, self-help is going to become more prevalent.

MP – There used to be something called the Time Bank where people will help each other with their specific skills. E.g. if someone cannot garden but can fill out forms, they could help someone with admin and then they would have their grass cut by someone.




Date of the Future Meetings

18th January

22nd March

10th May

12th July

13th September

15th November



Next meeting – 18th January.