Understanding Learning Disability
UnderstandingLearning Disability

Eastleigh Borough and Romsey Mencap Society

First prize – Best Over All! The Village People & friends at West End Carnival June 2018 First prize – Best Over All! The Village People & friends at West End Carnival June 2018

Our aim is to protect and enhance the life chances of children and adults with learning disabilities living in Eastleigh and Romsey.

Our services are open to anyone with a learning disability who lives in the borough of Eastleigh or in Romsey, but before accessing any of our services, you do need to talk to someone to be sure they are appropriate for you. Please call the office and leave your name and number. We will always call you back.


Our constitution limits the offer of our services to people with learning disabilities living in this geographical area. Much of our funding is raised locally for the benefit of local people with learning disabilities.


Our Home page contains our News items and Upcoming Events, links to our Projects and Services webpages for much more information about what we do, What's been happening - our recent events, and Keeping you informed - information from outside agencies including Hampshire Conty Council

Our Services...

  • Flagship Art Club
  • Eastleigh Hot Shots (Basketball Club)
  • Chill Out Club
  • Gardening Club
  • Grantham Green Growers

...and Projects

  • Carnival 2019



Flagship Art Exhibition 2019 Flagship Art Exhibition 2019

Exciting job opportunities at EBR Mencap!


We have two new and exciting job opportunities to join us and support our charity to thrive and grow.


We are looking for an Operations Manager and a Fundraising and Admin Manager, and will consider one person for both roles.


Please see the adverts and job descriptions for details, and contact us to apply or for an informal discussion.


Operations Manager


Operations Manager - Job Description
Operations Manager job description.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [183.5 KB]
Operations Manager advertisement November 2019
Operations Manager advert November 2019.[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [188.3 KB]


Fundraising and Admin Manager


Fundraising and Admin Manager Job Description
Fundraising and Admin Manager job descri[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [180.2 KB]
Fundraising and Admin Manager advertisement November 2019
Fundraising and Admin Manager advert Nov[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [186.8 KB]

AGM time again!


On Saturday November 9 starting at 7.00pm , we will be celebrating our annual party and our Annual General Meeting at Cranbury Community Centre in Cranbury Road, off Blenheim Road.


Members, carers, family members and friends, as well as anyone interested in our society, are all welcome to come and hear about our past year’s work. DJ, dancing, picture quiz and grand raffle are just some of the attractions.


There will be a FISH AND CHIP SUPPER which must be pre-ordered. Contact the office before November 4 to order your food and organise payment.


We will have an ACHIEVEMENT TABLE so that you can show your cups, medals, certificates, photos or letters of acclaim. We want to celebrate everyone’s achievements.

Steaming ahead...


We were fortunate to have a day out at the Watercress Line recently and to be guided around the workshops by Dr Becky Peacock. It was amazing to see how the bespoke parts were made for both steam and diesel engines in the workshops. 


We also had a steam train ride in a vintage carriage from Ropley to Alresford stations. We are pictured here on the Harry Potter bridge. Thanks to Mid Hants Railway for their hospitality.

Visit to the Watercress Line 2019 Visit to the Watercress Line 2019
Harry Potter bridge, Watercress Line 2019 Harry Potter bridge, Watercress Line 2019

Growing raised beds!


Last month we were fortunate to have a visit from a working party from Eastleigh Works to help out at the Gardening Club.


The working party split into two and carried out an amazing amount of work on the two allotments, leaving them almost unrecognisable!  Rubbish was removed, weeds and dead plants dug out, soil turned over and our individual raised beds were repaired with new timber sides and enlarged to more than twice their size.


The allotments are now well prepared for next year and our members have more scope to grow the plants they select. With a larger raised bed, members can grow a wider selection of flowers, herbs and vegetables.


We are very grateful to the team from Eastleigh Works for their hard work and enthusiasm. What a difference half a day (of hard work) can make!


Gardening Club raised beds Gardening Club raised beds


New members are welcome at the Gardening Club and may wish to attend our winter meetings to find out about the club, choose which plants to grow and to get to know the other members. Contact the office for more information. The Gardening Club is based at allotments in West End.

Lantern making Lantern making

Lantern Procession, 19 October 2019


Members of the Flagship Art Club were joined by some friends to produce the lanterns. Everyone made a small individual lantern. The larger lanterns were a collaborative effort made by groups of members. 

We used wet willow to make the handles and the framework for the larger lanterns and covered them with various colours of tissue paper. Simple but very effective!

We paraded through the streets of Eastleigh with other lantern holding groups. We ended up at the bandstand, at dusk on Saturday evening accompanied by a Samba band. The Mayor of Eastleigh was there to welcome everyone.

Lantern Procession - 20 October 2019 Lantern Procession - 20 October 2019


The project was organised by Caroline Rackham, our Art Club tutor who had been running lantern making workshops throughout the borough in schools and clubs for the past few weeks. This was an event for all generations.


We met many friends who had come to see the spectacle. Some of us carried collection buckets for the Mayor of Eastleigh’s Charities Appeal. This is the first time this event has occurred in Eastleigh and we thoroughly enjoyed being part of it.

Subscriptions up! Subscriptions up!

Subscriptions rising...


A review of our finances for the AGM has revealed that it is time we raised our subscriptions for different clubs.


Subs do not even begin to cover our costs in providing these clubs and services. We make up the shortfall by fundraising through writing grant applications, holding coin collections and other fundraising events. Our fees are significantly cheaper than many other organisations providing similar services.

  • The CHILLOUT CLUB will rise from £2.50 to £3.00
  • Flagship Art Club from £5.00 to £6.00
  • ACTIVE CITIZENS from £6.00 to £7.50
  • Eastleigh Hot Shots Basketball Club from £3.50 to £4.00

Gardening Club subs remains the same.


The Mayor's Charities Appeal 2019

Keep up to date with our Mayor's Charities Appeal 2019 news page, including... 

The Test Way The Test Way

Walking the Test Way for The Mayor’s Charities Appeal, Sunday 29 September


Sponsor us please!


September update...

We now have seven willing walkers, including the Mayor himself, who will complete the five mile stretch!

There is still time to join us if you are an experienced walker and/or just need a little training. Training resumes in mid September, the walk itself is on Sunday, 29 September.


Our inclusive team includes two people who are providing support and the rest are people with learning disabilities who want to support the Mayor of Eastleigh’s Charities. They are not people who walk a lot generally. They are putting regular effort each week into being trained to walk the five miles for the Test Way Walk. Please support them!


Find out how we're progressing on our Walking The Test Way for The Mayor's Charities Appeal page


and check out the sponsorship page...



Volunteering for Mayor's Appeal logo Volunteering for Mayor's Appeal logo


Volunteering for the Society and for the Mayor's Appeal

We have had some new volunteers recently and they have been so delighted with their experience, that we want to establish a Volunteering crew. This is a list of people who can be contacted when there is a chance to volunteer at an event for us.


We really value people who say YES to volunteering offers and then follow through to complete them! Carers and relatives are welcome to join too.


More about our Volunteering Crew on our Mayor's Charities Appeals page

The new Mayor of Eastleigh, Councillor Darshan Mann admires the “past Mayor’s badge” of outgoing Mayor, Councillor Bruce Tennent on May 9 at the Official Mayor Making. The new Mayor of Eastleigh, Councillor Darshan Mann admires the “past Mayor’s badge” of outgoing Mayor, Councillor Bruce Tennent on May 9 at the Official Mayor Making.

Mayor Making - A Special Honour...

We are proud to announce that your society has been chosen by the new Mayor of Eastleigh, Councillor Darshan Mann to be one of three charities benefiting from his Charities Appeal this year May 2019 - May 2020.


We hope that all our members, friends and supporters get involved in enjoying functions, volunteering and raising funds. This really is a win-win situation for us: more profile for people with learning disabilities being active members of their community and more funds for all three chosen charities.



Society Diary Dates



  • November 2 and 16 Saturdays – Basketball club sessions at Wyvern College in the Sports Hall.
  • November 9, Saturday - Chandlers Ford Charities Fayre at the Dovetail Centre 10-12noon
  • November 9, Saturday – Annual Party & AGM. Arrive before 7.00pm. Cranbury Centre, Cranbury Road, Eastleigh
  • November 16, Saturday – day time stall at Eastleigh at Christmas
  • November 18, Monday 2.00 to 3.30pm & December 14, Saturday 11.00am to 12.30pm – Gardening Club winter meetings at Hilldene Community Centre. 
  • December 14, Saturday – Basketball club cancelled due to exams at Wyvern College.



Please call the office and leave your name and number if you have any questions about our events or anything else. We will always call you back.  Our Office number : 023 8048 3471

Eastleigh Hot Shots Basketball Club!

"A big Thank You to Magic Little Grants which has provided a grant to employ our basketball coach for one year. Magic Little Grants are administered by Localgiving and the Postcode Community Trust"


Michelle, May 2019

Waitrose Community Matters 
We have been chosen as one of three charities in the green token scheme this August at Leckford Farm Shop & Café.

Please vote for us with your green tokens if you go to the Water Gardens at Leckford this summer.

Hampshire Advocacy Services

Hampshire County Council, NHS England and the Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Groups commission a range of advocacy services for children and adults across Hampshire. The current contract ends on 31 March 2020. They are seeking feedback on these services to inform the Service Specification for the new contract to begin from 01 April 2020.


They are seeking feedback from:

  • People who have used advocacy services within Hampshire
  • Carers/family or friends of those who have used advocacy
  • Staff in partner agencies who have worked or are working with advocates supporting people using their services
  • Members of the public with an interest in advocacy services
  • Professionals with an interest in advocacy services

To have your say go to: https://healthhampshirecc.researchfeedback.net/s.asp?k=156268863153


Hampshire County Council 
Balancing the Budget consultation – closes July 17


By April 2021 the Council expect an £80 million budget shortfall, it is asking residents what action they want taken: more cuts, increasing Council tax, introducing charges, putting pressure on Government…? 

Have your say: https://www.hants.gov.uk/aboutthecouncil/haveyoursay/consultations/balancing-the-budget


Just when you thought austerity was over!

Here comes T21 (Transformation to 2021) – the latest round of savings from Hampshire County Council.

How much must be saved this time? More importantly, what will be left?

Orchard Close Respite Unit

The future is still uncertain

No final decision has yet been made about the future of Orchard Close Respite Centre. A number of Health & Social Care Committee meetings have been held with votes taken but for now it is simply being said that the Respite Centre will continue to operate until autumn 2020. Decision time on the future of the Centre will be in the autumn of this year. 
In the meantime there will continue to be discussion and consideration of the need for this Respite Centre, the amount that could be saved by its closure and other matters.  
This is disappointing for all the supporters of Orchard Close who took time to complete the Consultation document in the first place, organised powerful deputations to the Health & Social Care Committee, have lobbied members of the Committee and who have been hoping for a swift resolution.  
Knowing that the future is uncertain for a much loved and high quality facility, where your son or daughter is happy and receives excellent care, puts an additional strain on carers who have previously always relied upon its service. So many of the Council’s valued Respite Units have been closed in recent years and carers do not want to see Orchard Close added to that list. The move to short breaks in local shared lives placements is not something that most carers want. 

To read more about Orchard Close, visit our For your Information page...

Carers’ Group
West Hampshire Community Learning Disability Service (part of Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust) is setting up a Carers’ Group to help improve the service provided by the Health Service to adults with a learning disability in our area.


They wish to develop their service and understand the importance of hearing carers’ views. The group is for informal carers (family/legal guardians). If you are interested in being in the group or receiving their minutes or newsletter contact the facilitators: Rachel Johnson or Martin Johnson. Email: hp-tr.whclds@nhs.net


Meetings for 2019

  • April 26 Friday 10-12 at Hampshire House, Eastleigh
  • July 19 Friday 10-12 at Totton Hub, Totton
  • October 17 Thursday 10-12 at Hampshire House, Eastleigh.  


Our Newsletter, Newsflash!, contains information about local and national initiatives and about our activities. Click on the newsletter tab to read previous newsletters.

Please visit the website regularly to read our latest news. If you have any comments on the content, or would like us to include something on the website, please do get in touch with Elaine Fish (Chair).


November 2019 - Download the latest newsletter here
Newsflash 134 - November 2019.pdf
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New members

If you have enjoyed this newsletter or any of our services and want to join us, please contact Michelle on the office number or ask her about membership. There are real advantages to being an Eastleigh Borough & Romsey MENCAP member.

Contact Us/Membership

Our members receive a regular copy of our newsletter, Newsflash, either by email or post, and news of all new projects and opportunities. More about becoming a member...


Contact Us:

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Phone: 02380 483471 .. Email: ebr.mencap@ntlworld.com .. Registered Charity Number 263620 .. affiliated to Royal MENCAP Society