October News from the Time Bank

This months update from Viv and the team at Time Bank Plus in Bath:

Another month in this strange year of 2020. As the weather changes and Covid restrictions start to kick in again, it’s more important than ever that we stay in touch, keep active and connect with others in whatever ways we can. We at Time Bank Plus will do our best to keep things going, whether it’s Zoom groups or Covid-safe activities such as walks or gardening. And we welcome any suggestions or offers of help for new online groups or other initiatives.

If you aren’t already in our Whatsapp group, do join us. It’s such a good way to keep in touch with each other, share information or ask for help. Just email timebankplus@gmail.com with your mobile number and we’ll add you to the group.

IT Assistance

If you, or others you know, need some help with setting up Whatsapp, Zoom or other apps, please let us know and one of our volunteers may be able to help you. We’d also love to hear from anyone with good IT skills who is interested in volunteering to assist others.

Feelgood Walks

Walking is a great way to enhance your wellbeing, stay fit and meet others. These walks are taking place every week on alternate Tuesdays and Wednesdays, with a start point in Twerton. They are gentle walks, suitable for all levels of fitness. We practise social distancing and there is currently a maximum of 6 people per walk.

The dates this month are:

Weds 7th Oct 2.30 – 3.30

Tues 13th Oct 12.30 – 1.30

Weds 21st Oct 2.30 – 3.30

Tues 27th Oct 12.30 – 1.30

There are normally plenty of spaces, but due to the six person rule, we ask that if possible you let us know if you would like to come along. We’d also love to hear from anyone who’d like to volunteer to assist or lead a walk.

Sustainable Gardening & Food Growing

Our gardening team is up and running and we are able to take on a small number of suitable gardening jobs on Tuesday mornings. Gardening is a great way to meet others in a safe, outdoor environment and to learn useful skills. Please get in touch if you’d like to help out.

Our allotment at Bath City Farm is also available for volunteers to help with food growing.

Southside Food Co-op

The Food Co-op provides boxes of fresh, locally grown veggies (and occasional fruit) every other Wednesday, and delivers them to your home. This is available to anyone living in South or West Bath (eg Twerton, Whiteway, Odd Down, Oldfield Park, Newbridge & Lower Weston).

The quality of produce is fantastic at this time of year – it’s all freshly picked and grown mostly on the edge of Bath near Solsbury Hill. The price, for those people on a lowish income (below £18,000 pa for a single person, £25,000 for a couple or £30,000 for a family), is £4.50 for a small box, £5.50 for a medium box and £7 for a large box. For those who are better off, we charge £6 for a small box, £7 for a medium box and £9 for a large box. All these prices include the cost of delivery. We trust people to let us know and won’t be asking anyone for evidence of income! We use any surplus raised to provide veggies to those in urgent need.

Please email timebankplus@gmail.com if you’d like to order a veggie box and please provide a phone number for us to contact you. We will need at least 2 days’ notice. Payment needs to be in advance by bank transfer or direct debit.

Borrow It

The Borrow It Library of Things is open on Tuesday afternoons from 2 – 6pm and Wednesday mornings from 10am – 12noon. If possible, please ring beforehand on 01225 442813 or email timebankplus@gmail.com to let us know what you’d like to borrow, so we can prepare it for you. We have a wide range of gardening equipment, DIY tools, camping gear, sewing machines, carpet cleaner, kitchen items and more. Click here for further info and our catalogue of things: http://timebankplus.co.uk/wp/?page_id=586

Sewing Workshops

We are holding fortnightly sewing workshops in Twerton on Tuesday afternoons, where we will be using sewing machines to make face masks. Each session will be for just 2 people so as to maintain social distancing. Please get in touch if you would like to come along.

Guitar Group

This is a small, friendly beginner-level group, which has been meeting on alternate Wednesdays in Twerton. We may have space for one more participant and would also love to hear from anyone who is able to assist or lead the group. Please email timebankplus@gmail.com for further info.

Zoom groups

As the weather gets cooler, we are open to the possibility of increasing online groups again, depending on demand. Please send us your suggestions for new Zoom groups. We’d also love to hear from anyone who’d like to set up or lead a group. Please email us if you would like the joining link to any of the following groups:

Mondays (fortnightly)

12.30 – 1.30pm Knit & Natter Zoom Group. Get out your wool and knitting needles or crochet hook, make a cup of tea and sit down for a friendly online session with a small group of others. Expert advice is available if needed. The next 3 sessions will be on 5th October, 19th October and 2nd November.

Thursdays (weekly)

10.30 – 11.30am Creative Writing Zoom Group. This is a very friendly and supportive group of people who are writing and sharing short pieces of prose or poetry. There is a different topic each week and we have an online forum where members of the group can post up their writings. (See below for a piece of writing from one of our members).

Fridays (weekly)

2 – 3pm Time Bank Social Café, Quizzes & Games. This is an opportunity to meet up socially on Zoom for a chat and to have a go at a short quiz or a light hearted board game. We’d also welcome a volunteer to help run these sessions, in particular facilitating a range of simple board games and/or quizzes.

Keeping in touch

In addition to the above activities, we are continuing to keep in touch with our members and offer regular or occasional phone calls to anyone who’d like a friendly, supportive chat. This can be particularly helpful to those people who don’t have a smartphone or internet.

Volunteering opportunities (summary)

We are currently looking for assistance with Gardening & Food Growing, tutoring the Guitar Group, IT support, running Zoom groups and Online Games & Quizzes, assisting with Walks or other outdoor activities and joining local Litter Picks. We are also looking for a Treasurer for our Management Committee. Please get in touch if you can help.

Free Training Opportunities

These free training courses are now held online via Zoom and can be attended by any member of Time Bank Plus. Upcoming topics are: Mental Health & Wellbeing (3 sessions); First Aid; Safeguarding; Supporting People with Mental Health Needs.

Please follow this link for further details:


Other Groups & Activities

The Virtual Hope Guide includes a large selection of online groups and activities. Here’s a link: https://www.bridges2wellbeing.co.uk/hope-guide

Wellbeing College also publish a regularly updated calendar of courses: https://www.wellbeingcollegebanes.co.uk/Calendar

Here are some activities for over 55’s, currently being run by St John’s: https://stjohnsbath.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Whats-on-at-St-Johns.pdf

Compassionate Community Hub 0300 247 0050

Need help getting food, medicine, housing or other essential items?

Feeling isolated, or concerned about physical and mental wellbeing?

This B&NES Helpline number, which is open 7 days a week from 9am to 5pm, gives you access to:

- Volunteer support such as collecting shopping and prescriptions and offering regular supportive phone chats

- Money and benefits advice services and housing issues

- Up to date info on food delivery services throughout B&NES

- Food Banks and food & meal deliveries to elderly and vulnerable people

- Services for the most vulnerable, carers, domestic abuse and other family issues

Tel 0300 247 0050 or email BATHNES.thehub@virgincare.co.uk or text 07870 868368

Please note: for medical advice you need to ring 111.