RM Poole sizzlse up a storm for Aggies

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Aggie’s Pastoral Worker Nicola and the team at RM Poole sizzled up a storm last week in aid of Aggie Weston’s.

Serving bacon butties to hungry personnel the team made a donation to Aggie’s to commemorate the life and legacy of Dame Agnes Weston as the charity commemorates 100 years since the death of the founder.

The bacon butty morning was a first for Nicola and proved such a success they are starting to plan more!

Thank you Nicola and team for your kind donation.

Aggie's receives a donation from the Lord Mayor of Plymouth

 The Lord Mayor of Plymouth with Jenn, Aggie’s Pastoral Worker from the Ark Community Project

The Lord Mayor of Plymouth with Jenn, Aggie’s Pastoral Worker from the Ark Community Project

In recognition of the centenary of Aggie Weston's death, The Lord Mayor of Plymouth has graciously made a generous donation from his Councillor Community Grant to support and improve the pastoral support that we offer to the Royal Marines in Stonehouse Barracks.   

It's all go at RM Condor

Aggie’s Pastoral Workers Seonid Cunningham and Sue Christian have been very busy at RM Condor during the Autumn term, here Sue tells us what has been keeping them busy.

It has been a busy time foe the Aggies girls at the RM Condor in the past month or so. Beside our weekly Wigglers and attending coffee mornings, we have had our first Messy Church Event, Storybook Waves Bookclub and our BIG Aggies Bacon Butty.

 

Our Messy Church event was held on 16th October in the evening where a jacket potato dinner was followed by a harvest service for the families done by Seonid and Sue. Centring our message around the parable of the sower told in a family friendly way, all the craft and music followed this theme.

The families all made bird feeders made from ice cream cones and seed, iced gingerbread men making them farmer Joe or Josephine, and vegetable stamped an array of harvest fruit. It was colourful and truly messy!!!

 

Our Storybook Waves Bookclub continues to be well attended, especially with many of the marines deployed. Families look forward to their monthly story and games.

 

We held our big Aggies Bacon Butty on 24th October from 10am until 2pm. There were many bacon and sausage butties made by Seonid and Sue but our army off butty helpers made the day went like clockwork. There were eight helpers and we can’t thank them enough. It will be at least a month until we cook bacon again! However, we did raise £50.

 

Our Crochet Club has been busy and now has around nine committed crocheters making everything from reusable face wipes, unicorns, poppies and baby hats. Recently Sue and her band of crocheters are making time rabbits!!!!! A big thank you to Elizabeth for all of her help and skill. The group will carry on under its own steam in coming weeks.

 

Coming up we have our Poppy Waterfall for Remembrance Sunday, our Bring & Buy Sale and our Ladies Lunch. Amongst all these events, Sue and Seonid always have time to listen and have a cuppa with anyone in need.

Commemorating the life, love and legacy of Aggie Weston

On Monday 15th October, Trustees, Staff and guests of the charity gathered at Weston Mill Cemetery to commemorate the life, love and legacy of Dame Agnes Weston.

The service was conducted by Reverend Bill Gates with speeches made by RN Chaplain Reverend Janice Honey-Morgan, Aggies Pastoral Worker Mr Simon Thomas and Reverend Dr Scott Shackleton Deputy Chaplain of the Fleet.

Afterwards, invited guests enjoyed a reception at Plymouth Guildhall where they heard first hand accounts of the legacy of Aggie Weston’s, had the opportunity catch up with old friends and discover the work of Today’s Aggies.

Here CEO of Aggie Weston’s, Craig Fulton tells us a bit about her life:

Agnes Weston lived a remarkable life, sacrificing the comfort of a middle class professional home in Bath in order to work with lowly sailors, or “Bluejackets.”  She had worked in support of Army personnel in Bath and wrote supportive letters to many of these when they were posted abroad. Her initial connection with the Royal Navy began in 1868 when a sailor on a troopship (HMS CROCODILE) heard of her letter writing and asked to be included. From that point she began to devote her life to her mission of working with the sailors of Queen Victoria’s Royal Navy.

In 1876, at the request of a group of sailors from HMS DRYAD, and with the assistance of her life-long friend Sophia Wintz, “Aggie” opened the first Sailor’s Rest on Fore Street in Devonport. Two years later in 1878 the second Sailor’s Rest was opened on Commercial Road in Portsmouth. The title of ‘Royal’ was bestowed on the Rests in 1892 when Queen Victoria issued her Royal Warrant.

 

In her autobiography Dame Agnes noted that the Royal Sailor’s Rest in Devonport and Portsmouth had over 1400 beds between them, and the total of men sleeping in them was over 350,000 per year, with many more using the Rests without sleeping in them.

 

Aggie’s desire was always to stay “in the harness” until the very end and she managed to do exactly that. After completing “another day’s work” she retired to her bed at the Royal Sailor’s Rest in Devonport and died in the early hours of the morning on 23 October 1918. 

 

Dame Agnes was a lady ahead of her time and her influence and legacy live on today in the charity that bears her name. Dame Agnes Weston’s Royal Charity for the Naval Service is still privileged to have HM Queen as its

 

Patron. Today ‘Aggies’ supports serving sailors, marines and their families through the provision of Pastoral Workers who are there to listen, encourage, comfort and support their beneficiaries.  The charity also provides support to families through practical projects such as Storybook Waves, The Ark community project in Plymouth and Aggies at Rowner.

 

Super Hero Party for our littlest heroes

Aggie Weston's Pastoral Workers might be considered Super Heroes by  some of our service users; this week our PWs in Arbroath lived up to the claim....

This week Pastoral Workers Seonid and Sue from RM Condor in Arbroath hosted a party for the youngest superheroes.  

On Super Hero Day the children had lunch together, made masks, created their own superheroes and had their faces painted.   After lunch it was time for a super hero scavenger hunt and a Kryptonite war... there was just enough time to destroy Spider Man's web.

Just another day in the varied work of an Aggies Pastoral Worker

 

 

Aggies Pastoral Workers help staff keep their cool

 Alan Richardson and Hilary Knight, Aggie Weston Pastoral Workers

Alan Richardson and Hilary Knight, Aggie Weston Pastoral Workers

RNAS Yeovilton hosted their Air Day on Saturday and Aggie Weston Pastoral Workers, Alan and Hilary were on hand to help keep staff cool. Hilary tells us all about their day.

On Air Day Alan and I spend the morning walking the air station meeting people and being a friendly face to those visiting – approx. 40,000. From about 13.00 we then venture out with our cool box and trolley filled with ice-creams and give them to as many serving personnel we can find who are working hard to make the day go well for all those visiting. This includes “air command” who are located in the fire station, those guarding the entrances and everyone else. This year we gave away nearly 200 ice-creams a welcome by all those in the heat!

It’s a long day but a rewarding one as we spread a little happiness across the station, it’s amazing what an ice-cream and friendly smile can do!

On Tuesday following Air Day we then visited air traffic control with “posh” biscuits and a “thank you” for those working to keep all the aircraft in the sky and the pilots safe

Aggies teams out and about

Aggie Weston Pastoral workers were out and about over the weekend ensuring our serving personnel were kept fed and cool!

At RNAS Yeovilton Air Day Aggie Pastoral Workers Alan Richardson and Hilary knight were out and about providing the teams or personnel working the air with ice cold lollies, whilst down the road at RM Stonehouse Ian Taylor and Simon Thomas were providing personnel with tea and cakes in a shady area of the base.

Aggie Weston's Pastoral Workers will be out and about across the UK again this week, looking after our service personnel.

Generous Grant helps fund more Pastoral hours at CTCRM

 Abi Tokens, Vicky Plastow and Zena Woodley - CTCRM Pastoral Workers

Abi Tokens, Vicky Plastow and Zena Woodley - CTCRM Pastoral Workers

Aggie Weston's is delighted to announce that The Royal Marines Charity, a proud part of the Royal Navy & Royal Marines Charity have released a grant of £19859 to enable Aggies' to provide an additional 30 hours pastoral support at CTCRM, Lympstone.

Aggie Weston's currently funds 60hours of pastoral support to personnel at CTCRM, Lympstone. The Pastoral team; Zena, Vicky and Abi, have been working incredibly hard with the new recruits, staff and families of CTCRM, the difference that the team are making to the lives of the service beneficiaries was identified by the chain of command who requested their working hours be increased.  

Due to the generous grant made by The Royal Marines Charity, the Team of Pastoral Workers at CTCRM are now able to provide more support to the Marine Corp.  

Aggie Weston Pastoral Worker receives Commendation.

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Aggie Weston's Pastoral Worker Simon Thomas was recently awarded a Naval Base Commander Devonport Commendation from Commodore Ian Shipperley.

Simon earned the commendation for working alongside RNRMW Plymouth as they re-launched the community centres catering for the families across the city, the award also recognised Simon's hard work as an Aggie Weston's Pastoral Worker, which places him alongside families across Plymouth and enables him to help with pre-deployment events.

Aggie Westons receives £1000 from HMS Sultan

 Captain Pete Towell from HMS Sultan presents a cheque to Steve Howlett, Aggie Weston's Pastoral Worker and Craig Fulton, Aggie Weston's CEO.

Captain Pete Towell from HMS Sultan presents a cheque to Steve Howlett, Aggie Weston's Pastoral Worker and Craig Fulton, Aggie Weston's CEO.

Each year HMS SULTAN runs a series of fundraising events with the largest being the SULTAN Summer Show and the SULTAN fireworks in November.

Once per year they split the money that they have raised between worthy local and naval charities.

This year, in recognition of the valuable work that Aggie’s Pastoral workers do amongst the personnel of HMS SULTAN they selected Aggie Weston’s as one of the benefactors.

Craig Fulton, CEO of Aggie Weston's said "We are very proud of the work that our Pastoral Workers Steve Howlett and Rebecca Baird have been conducting with the personnel at HMS SULTAN and are thrilled to have the work recognised in this way by the Captain of the Base.  This kind donation will be used to help sustain charity’s pastoral support programme".

Aggie Weston's Pastoral Workers at HMS SULTAN are based in the Chaplaincy Haven and run a number of events across the week, month and year to support staff and personnel serving on the base.  For more information on their work please contact the Aggie Weston's Head Office.

Ladies who know how to lunch

There is nothing nicer than getting together with a group of friends for lunch. It’s made all the more fun when it’s a themed lunch. Pastoral workers at The Condor, 45 Command, Arbroath had an ‘Absolutely Fabulous’ ladies lunch where dressing up was an option. Well Sue and Seonid were not going to miss the opportunity to become Patsy and Eddie for the day.

It’s surprising how many bad taste clothes we can have hidden in our wardrobes and this was a perfect opportunity to air them all together as some of the photos show

We had around 18 wives and girlfriends who attended the soup and sandwich lunch, but were kept entertained by a myriad of games designed to test their skills at working as a team. One of the games was building the most sturdy and largest building out of spaghetti and marshmallows. This isn’t an easy feat for anyone and there were some rather wobbly examples, but one team worked like designers and made a structure that would have rivalled the Forth Road Bridge! 

After a lovely lunch of lentil soup, mixed sandwiches and chocolate cake, we played spin the bottle, but not as you know it!

Seonid brought her collection of nail polishes, which number into the fifties, in every possible colour and each person had a colour that they had to paint on one nail of the person where the bottle landed. In the end there were a lot of women with 10 different nails, but who had enjoyed their Absolutely Fabulous lunch at the Haven.

We are busy organising the next one with more challenging games, a different theme and offering another opportunity for people to get together and enjoy themselves.

Weekly Events with Aggie Westons

Every Week Aggie Weston's Pastoral workers are busy around our sites hosting events that provide an opportunity to chat, entertain and listen.  

Events are open to all sailors, marines and their families.  A list of the events that we host is below, if you would like more details please contact your local centre.

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