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Living Tree News 27
October 2020

Dear Living Tree members and friends,

Welcome to the October Newsletter. Pictured above is the misty view west from Chedington, early on an October morning. It was photographed on 35mm film by Liz Baker (Jo & Vince O’Farrell’s daughter) on her way to shoot a wedding a few years ago. Liz is currently compiling the newsletter for us and is delighted to share some of her photos.

Please email us at to let us know if you would like to join any of the Living Tree Zoom Drop-In sessions this month, and we will email you the link and password to enable you to participate. We will only send you the link if you request it.

For those who might like to have the opportunity to talk in a smaller group or even on a one to one basis, especially if you would like a private chat with someone, we do have the means to create break out rooms which you can join and return to the main meeting when you wish, just at the press of a button! If you ask the Zoom host, usually Vince, he can arrange that for you.

Here are the details of our Living Tree meetings this month:

Friday 2nd October 2-4pm

Chris’s Cancer Community and Your SimPal
Working to improve Cancer support

Chris Lewis is a leading figure in working to improve cancer support and raising its awareness. Chris last came down to Bridport at the request of Jo O’Farrell nearly 4 years ago, to be a special guest speaker to the Living Tree about his work and his charity Your SimPal.
He is a great character and he has never forgotten the lovely time he had on his last visit so he is really pleased to come on Zoom to chat to you all. Not one to be missed!
View his webpage and find out about the great deal of work he does on
Or check him out on YouTube
The Facebook page is Chris’s Cancer Community

Friday 16th October 2-4pm

Tamara Jones is a Dorset-based Nutritional Therapist with a Bsc in Nutritional Therapy. Her aim is to show people how to overcome certain health concerns through specialised nutrition.
Today she is talking about eating healthily during cancer.
Check out her webpage for interesting recipes and more about her work on
Tamara’s Facebook page is Loving Healthy

Friday 30th October 2-4pm

Maria Morris, Ergonomics Consultant & Wellness Therapist .
Your own true nature on
Do follow Maria Morris on Facebook and see her page called Your Own True Nature


Have you visited our website?
You’ll find latest news, featured posts, the Library booklist and more.


Sherry is posting daily on The Living Tree Facebook page, with useful information and uplifting responses to the current situation.


This month’s poem was awarded a “Commended” in the National Poetry Competition 2019 held by the Poetry Society.

It was written by my sister Alexandra’s friend, Louisa Adjoa Parker.

Alexandra died, aged 58, of secondary liver cancer in October 2019.

I have read the poem many times and listened to the author recite it. It is a wonderful poem; even if I didn’t know Alexandra, I would have felt the essence of her which Louisa  totally captured.

The judges said this about the poem;

“It is difficult to write well about happiness, about calm, about everyday gratitude and how it can coexist with grief. This poem is deceptively simple, its clarity hard won. It is expertly paced, charming and poignant.”

Thank you for reading it.

Rosemary Thorpe


FROM AUTHOR LIZ HOLLINGWORTH: “The idea for this book formed several years ago when I had hired a villa in Majorca and there was much more farmland than there is now.  I found myself  next door to a very small fenced off field with two very tired and shabby horses.  They had flies all over them and I became increasingly distressed about them.  My friend and I spent the holiday purchasing carrots and apples and threw them over the fence each day.  On the other side of the villa was a mongrel type dog who was tied to their gate in the baking sun just pacing up and down all day long until his master came home.

When I returned from Majorca I could not get them out of my head and so decided that I had somehow to turn things around so I penned down the first chapter and let that chapter lay dormant in my desk until I went to Poole for my 3 weeks radiotherapy.  I think everyone has experienced the continual breakdown of their equipment there and a long wait on those days was inevitable so with pad and pen I retrieved the first chapter and wrote  the next 5 in the waiting room at Poole.  I used the wonderful taxi service that Living Tree provided – pathways to care.  It was nearly 3 years ago now when we had a blizzard on the A35.  As scary as it was on the roads, they never let me down.  From there I went to Stepping Out and found Jo and Richard fantastic.  The atmosphere was brilliant and encouraging.  I realised that my book could have a purpose and that was to raise money for the two organisations in my way.”

Pedro, Blanco & Little Mouse costs £7.99 and is available to purchase from Rose Thorpe: All sale proceeds will go directly to The Living Tree.
Mindfulness sessions on Zoom will run on the 9th and 23rd of October at 2.p.m. Please email for the Zoom links. A message about loving kindness and self-compassion – from our regular mindfulness teacher Sue Howse – is included in full at the end of this newsletter.
It is with great sadness that we have to tell you that Janet Warburton has died. She had been a member of the Living Tree for many years and latterly has taken part in a number of our Zoom meetings where she encouraged everyone to embrace this new technology as a means of supporting each other during these difficult times.  A kind, lively and generous person with a zest for life, she will be greatly missed by all who knew her. Our sympathies go out to her family.
The trustees would like to extend the Telephone Support Service to include one to one, face to face contacts for anyone who feels they would like some company occasionally, especially those who may just be coming out of isolation/quarantine or who may be new to LT. These ‘meet ups’ would be socially distanced and outside for now to make them as safe as possible. If you would like to volunteer to be such a contact or would like to meet up with somebody from Living Tree, please email Rosemary with your phone number at or phone and leave a message on 07341 916976 with your name and phone number and we will get back to you.
A new advice line has been established because we are all relying much more on online technology to keep in touch (like ZOOM).  It is available to provide support for people with IT and digital problems of all kinds. Some of their most popular topics are how to set up video to stay in contact with friends and family and how to get online for beginners.  Telephone 01305 221000 (option 2).NATIONAL, REGIONAL and LOCAL RESOURCES
The most up to date national information on COVID-19 is:  and for health information

with Louise Wender. Worry Busting Zoom session on the first Friday of the month. Please email no later than the Wednesday before the session to let me know that you want to join, and so that I can send you the Zoom link.
I look forward to seeing you there, warmly, Louise.

I have a selection of books from the Living Tree Library that are available to loan to members.

They cover topics such as nutrition, cookery, complementary therapies and cancer specific books. Click here to view the latest list:

If you would like to borrow any Living Tree books, please contact me, Rose Thorpe, on

and I will get back to you with some suggestions and details of how to borrow them.

Hopeful Hampers & Good Neighbours Transport. Good Neighbours are offering transport for LT members to Dorset County Hospital for essential appointments. Phone and leave a message on the Good Books answerphone 01308 420483 and someone will call you back.
Chris Edwards is making face masks for £5 with £1 donation going to The Weldmar Hospice. The Weldmar has now received £200 from the sales of masks. She has a range of fabrics and 2 sizes, M and L and more fabrics are available on request.
Postage, delivery or collection can all be arranged. If you would like to make an order please message Chris on Facebook:
Or email
In February we launched our new partnership with local complementary therapists with 10 therapists on our books and more in the pipeline. Members wishing to use these therapists through our partnership scheme were invited to apply for a therapist card which would entitle them to six sessions with a therapist of their choice from that list. Due to the current restrictions on our lives, only three of our therapists are able to offer their services to Living Tree members albeit not face to face, but by using email, telephone, or Zoom.The three therapists are:

If you feel you would like to use these therapists during this period via the Therapist Partnership please leave a message for Rita on the Living Tree phone 07341 916976 or email:  If you would prefer to see these therapists privately and are able to self-fund your therapy then please contact them directly using the contact details above.

If you have concerns about medical issues concerning your cancer or treatment Macmillan has a number of useful resources and virtual support  Please note that any urgent issues should still be referred to your Clinical Nurse Specialist.The Penny Brohn UK Centre provides online resources, including a series of free online classes from international leaders in health, wellbeing, psychology and lifestyle.  They are also running a Helpline 0303 300 0118 and some 1:1 services.  Contact

  • AXMINSTER AND LYME CANCER SUPPORT have a beach hut at Lyme.
Please contact these groups directly to find out about other kinds of support available.

15 NOVEMBER CHARITY AUCTION – POSTPONEDIn view of the current pandemic situation, it is with much regret that Roz has decided to postpone her charity auction until April 11th next year. She will however still be  holding the raffle in aid of the Weldmar Hospice which will include a large Christmas hamper. Tickets for the raffle can be bought from Roz, (01308 422650), or Nigel, (01308 281203), at any time or over the weekend of Saturday November 14th, 10am-8pm and Sunday November 15th, 12pm-7pm at the Ropemakers. The draw will take place on the Sunday evening after 7pm.

Donations for the hamper can be given to either Roz or Nigel by contacting them on the numbers above.

It has been great to see so many of you at Stepping Out classes. Richard and Jo are running classes on Zoom on Monday and Friday mornings for Stepping Out participants.  Please contact Jo on if you usually attend Stepping Out and haven’t already received the information about joining the classes.  From September these classes may be live with social distancing measures in place.
Friday meetings always start with Tripudio, a daily 15 minute lymphatic and cardiovascular exercise regime which can be done in your home, patio or the smallest garden. Karen Forrester-Jones is also offering online 30 minute Tripudio Flow sessions via Zoom. If Living Tree members are interested contact Karen at for timings and links to the sessions.
With Jane Silver-Corren. Jane is running 3 singing sessions a week on Zoom on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 3.00pm. The sessions last one hour and are fun and light-hearted. If you are interested please email: and she will send you the Zoom link.

‘What’s the weather like today?’  It’s a question I ask myself each morning, because I have taken up swimming in the sea at West Bay with a small community of like-minded people.

The question is not just about the external weather, but also the internal weather.

Sometimes the pull is to stay in bed when the sky is cloudy outside and dull and my mind inside is unsettled and agitated.

By bringing curiosity and kindness to this self talk I can listen to what I really need, and express empathy to myself rather than condemnation.

So be curious about the words you use when you are being self-critical: for me those words are often ‘should’ or ‘ought’.  Maybe ask yourself ‘What is the attitude in my mind right now?’

‘What is the tone of my voice?  Is it.harsh, cold or angry’. ‘Is the inner critic working overtime?’

Try and get a clear sense of how you are talking – to yourself.  Can you soften the voice with compassion?, for example ‘I’m doing the best I can’

In these time when physical connection with others is so difficult, an easy way to soothe and  comfort yourself is to give yourself a hug, or a tender stroke to your arm or face.  Notice how your body feels after receiving this attention.  Try giving yourself  a hug in times of suffering.  Do this several times a day for at least a week.  It is such a simple way in which we can be kind to ourselves.

I look forward, hopefully, to offering some group sessions in October, possibly at Othona or in local Village Hall. I will also be meeting with Living Tree members for Mindfulness sessions on Zoom on the 9th and 23rd of October at 2.p.m. Please email for the Zoom links.

If you are interested in Wild Swimming and its benefits, please see Simon Jordan’s new book ‘Wild Swimming through Lock-down’ which has just been released with pictures and stories (including mine) explaining the benefits.  Or just come and join us. Copies of this book can be ordered from (£10, of which £3 goes to charity)

Much Love and Kindness to you all

Tel 07341 916976. Contact with any mailing list enquires/changes of address, ideas for events or items you would like to include in the next newsletter or on the website.  Our newsletter is sent out at the end of each month.