Events 2016

Heads up on meeting dates:

Our bi-monthly meetings will be held on February 26th (meal); April 13th; June 8th; August 10th; October 12th and December 14th. Details of each meeting will be published in this events diary as soon as they are available.

All events are held at Community House, Easemore road, Redditch (b98 8ye) at 7:30pm unless otherwise stated below.



  Friday 5th - Big Red Day

Members of the Bromsgrove morning classes dressed up in Red and donated funds of £81 for the BHF Big Red Day Event. Click here for pictures

 Thursday 25th - Annual Meal - Our annual meal takes place at Kings Norton golf club. Click here for the menu,  the cost is £12.00 per person. All menus and cheques need to returned before the end of January.

An excellent evening with good food and excellent company, compered by Patrick with the surprise inclusion of a Belly Dancing troupe to entertain us during the meal. Three or four enthusiastic members joined the Belly dancers on stage for the finale, defibrilators were on standby. An amazing amount of members turned out for the event. Raffle proceeds are to go to Macmillian Cancer support. The chairman thanked the committee for their outstanding work in organising the event. Thanks also to our members for supporting the event.

For photos click here



 Friday 8th :  Golf event at Gaude Luce. new members of any standard welcome, to book your place phone Jane MacBryde on  01527 503882  cost is usually between £15 and £18.

Remarkably the weather held and the rain stayed off for the 1st of the 2016 Hale & Hearties Golf Society golf days which was held at Gaudet Luce Golf Club on the 8th April.

The society welcomed 3 new members. 20 players, some in the new polo shirt, took to the course for the usual good, bad and indifferent golf but always with good humour in abundance and of course a defibrillator close at hand.

After 4.5 hours of golf all gathered in the club house to tell tall tales of how well they played and this was followed by a pleasant meal.  The prize winning team, comprising of “Nice Shot” Nigel Blake, “Lord” Peter Judd, newcomer Jim Latham and the trained athlete John Mee came in with an impressive score of 80- .  John Mee will next time wear a sombrero as he is a bandit of the first order.

Runners up were Jane “Swoosh” MacBryde, Val Mee, Ken Blears and Dave “Jack” Moreton. click here for photos

The next event will be on 5th July at Cleobury Mortimer for anybody who would like to play

 Wednesday 13th :  Robert Hall, Medical Director at the Cardiomyopathy Association, will be giving a talk on Heart failure. Cardiomyopathy treatments and patient stories.

An excellent evening. Over 50 members attended for this entertaining and interesting talk by Robert Hall on Cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle). Cardiomyopathy or heart failure is the leading cause of heart transplant requirement. Robert explained the different types of Cardiomyopathy; Hypertrophic; Dilated; Restrictive; Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Dysplasia and unclassified. Robert also outlined the symptoms although not all occurrences show symptoms. Patrick thanked Robert for his very informative talk and presented him with a small gift in appreciation. Click here for photo



Sunday 1st - The Great Birmingham 10k race. Race starters were UB40.

8,000 people took part.

Big John (John Payne) whom some of you will know from taking Rehab Classes at the Alex ran for Cancer Research. BJ did really well finishing the course in 1hour 33mins.  He did this by running, walking, skipping and finally crawling to the finish. BJ earned a massive  £430 for the charity and vows to train properly should he ever  be mad enough to do it again. Well done John. for photo click here.


 Wednesday 8th  : Linda Barratt will be giving a talk on drug advances, the NHS and the Alexandria Hospital.

Linda gave an excellent talk on the subjects above. The talk was well received and all agreed it was an excellent and informative evening.


 Tuesday 5th  : Golf event at Cleobury Mortimer.


 Wednesday 3rd : 20 Year Cardiac rehab celebration Photo. Click here for Photo

 ‘The 20th Anniversary  of the start of Cardiac Rehabilitation at the Alexandria Hospital, Redditch, was marked by a get together of two of the first patients to go through rehab, from 1996. Brian Burman and Al West. Linda Barratt, Senior cardiac nurse, and Jane MacBryde senior cardiac physiotherapist  both founder members of the service were there to celebrate, joining them was John Payne an OT assistant, Lynne Smith  a volunteer  and Jenny Banner a CR Nurse.John showed he has good cooking talents by baking a heart shaped, pink icing topped cake for the occasion. See photo of his extraordinary creation.

Karen Blanchette, Senior Communications Advisor from the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust was on hand to take photos. Karen also contacted the local press. The Bromsgrove advertiser included the photo plus an interview with Brian Burman in their piece on the anniversary event. ‘

  Wednesday 10th  : Defibrillator training.

 6 members from the various classes attended this training along with 2 exercise class trainers(Helen and Vicky). More Defibrillator training is being scheduled for September.

 Wednesday 10th  : Quiz night 

 Around 40 members attended a great evening with jokes from the chairman, Interesting quiz questions, and a picture round which baffled a few members. The winning team received a bottle of wine for each team member, the booby prize was a packet of jelly babies for each team member.There was a presentation to Nicky (Arrhythmia Nurse Specialist from the Alex ) of a Stethoscope and a handheld single channel ECG monitor click here for photo. The evening was rounded off by tea, coffee and biscuits.  The raffle was held with great success and most tables won something to take home. Ian won a candle which I'm sure we will see again.

I have reproduced the thank you letter from NIcky below:

To Denise,

I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone on the committee, and anyone else, that facilitated my wonderful desk chair, cardiology stethoscope and the AliveCor (ECG monitoring via your mobile phone). Firstly, Grandma and I had a great night so thank you for having us. Not sure I contributed to many of the quiz questions but you were all so very welcoming. 

I managed to get my desk chair to my office.  It is so comfortable and I have made sure it has my name on it! I am over the moon with my stethoscope. I’m afraid I can’t use it properly, until I have completed the health assessment course. Hopefully, this will be in September. I will use my stethoscope for the rest of my career and it will certainly help me do a full assessment on those coming to our arrhythmia clinics. It will mean I will be able to detect abnormality’s, such as, fluid overload or heart murmurs. 

Everyone is impressed with my AliveCor. My consultant, Dr Foster, is very jealous. I am sure this will come in good use. Either for myself (who has had previous arrhythmias) but more so on my patients or those around the hospital. I hope to run a ‘check your pulse’ campaign in the future. Most probably during ‘check your pulse’ week. It will be interesting to know, how many of those I test, will have an undiagnosed irregular rhythm. Potentially, detecting this and then doing a stroke risk assessment we might be able to advise those who are at risk, to be anti-coagulated and therefore, reduce the number of strokes. All by that tiny gadget!

 I am forever in your debt. I am extremely grateful. If I could please have a copy of the photographs taken. I will put it in the hospital newsletter (photo depending!).  

  If there is anything I can do to help you with your support group, I would be more than happy. 

Kind regards, 

Nicola Brewster 

Arrhythmia Nurse Specialist (01905 760 686 or


 Tuesday 23rd : Golf event, venue to be announced.


Friday 16th and Saturday 17th : 

Over Friday & Saturday members of H&H rattled buckets at Tesco redditch and 2 stores @ Worcester and raised £2000 for BHF & Diabetes UK. click here for photo

Wednesday 28th : A Meeting at Redditch town hall, 7 pm (just turn up), regarding the future of the Alex, The MP for Redditch and the head of the Trust are attending.

It appears to be death by a thousand cuts for the Alex, we have now lost Midwifery and Paediatrics and it lis rumoured that Cardiology is also to be lost to the Worcester Royal.

Friday 30th : Golf event at Bromsgrove.


 Wednesday 12th : The AGM and the popular Cheese & Wine evening.

An excellent evening attended by over 50 members. Patrick, the chairman, gave an overview of the H&H year and entertained the members with lots of jokes and anecdotes.  The committee and other members who work for the good of the group were mentioned and gifts distributed to them. Bob the treasurer gave an overview of the groups finances and whilst income was a little less than last year the financial position is good. Jane and Linda were presented with 'single channel ECG'  gadgets for their phones and are likely to be evied by their colleagues.

The committe, with their blessing, were voted back on for another year.

The cheese and wine was a great success with a variety cheeses on offer and an excellent choice of wines. It takes a lot of work to organise and prepare for this event and the committee and helpers are to be commended for their work.  

 Friday 21st : Music night at Lickey End social club, organised by Jane and Linda.

The event, in aid of the Alex rehab department and the British Heart Foundation, organised by Linda, Jane and BJ took place at the Lickey End Social club. The event was attended by an audience of over 90.

We were entertained by John who sang some of the rat packs most notable songs and, after the interval, some more upbeat numbers.

We also had a hula-hoop competition, in aid of the Edwards trust (£98 raised), with competitors having to hula-hoop for a minute to get through to the next round. The second round was much more difficult with competitors having to keep the hula-hoop going whilst counting backwards from 100 in 7’s. (100, 93, 86, 79 etc.). The competition was won by Ian Ballinger and Karen, a nurse from the Alex.

For the main event the total amount raised was £1250, £250 of that will go to the BHF, the rest will be going towards two heavy duty bikes for the rehab.

Many thanks must go to Linda, Jane, BJ and John for their work in organising and orchestrating the event.  click here for photos.


Friday 18th : Walking Group annual Christmas meal

The meal was attended by 16 members of the group and exercise classes. A great time was had by all with an excellent meal and pleasant company. See below regarding a donation to the BHF.

Saturday 26th : Reg Spinks, a regular member at the Friday morning classes and Tuesday walking group for many years, celebrated his 90th birthday today. Several members of the class and walking group visited him at his home. Reg had insisted on no presents but if people would like to make a donation to the British Heart Foundation he would be very happy. The walking group had held their annual Christmas dinner at the Bromsgrove Golf course on Friday the 18th of November as part of the normal set of procedures a discount was given to the walking group by the club owners. It was decided that this discount along with another donation (£38 in total) would be given to Reg to donate to the BHF. We all wish Reg a Happy Birthday with many more to follow.


 Wednesday 14th  : The Sherry and mince pie evening will be taking place with carol singing and the grand Christmas raffle.

A great evening with over 70 members attending. Patrick was in fine form telling jokes and reciting a lovely Christmas poem. The wine was flowing and the mince pies were disappearing at a rate of knots. Brian played the organ for us as we sang Christmas carols. Patrick thanked various members of the committee and other people who help out with the running of the club with tokens of appreciation. Click here for Photos

The Christmas raffle had 47 prizes, thanks to all for the donations.

Patrick who has been chairman for over 4 years tendered his resignation. Patrick took up a very difficult role and has been absolutely brilliant. Under his stewardship members at exercise classes and social events has continued to improve. Members of the club showed their appreciation for his tenure and hard work. Patrick also raised funds, for both H&H and BHF with his Marathonr unning. His enthusiasm and humour will be missed. Patrick will continue attending the exercise classes so we shall still see him around. Thanks again Patrick.