About

Oswestry Community Action, otherwise known as Qube, is a registered charity based in Oswestry, Shropshire. Its aim is to improve the quality of life for people in North Shropshire and North East Powys through the provision of Community Transport Services, a Volunteer Centre, Arts and Culture, Shopmobility and Care Services.

Qube also has a community building with facilities which include a purpose built contemporary art gallery and meeting/activity rooms.

 

Qube began as Oswestry Helpmates in 1989 with an ethos of access to services for all. Our services have been developed over time in response to local need such as rural poverty and lack of opportunities. The majority of our services are aimed at those who are disadvantaged which includes disability, health including mental health, unemployment and rural poverty and isolation.

 

Our services keep people engaged in their community, help them to feel less isolated and to live as independently as possible for as long as possible.

AllOfficersTrusteesAdmin & CoursesArtsBuildingFinanceSocial GroupsSocial PrescribingVolunteeringTransport
Chief Officer

Laurel Roberts

Head of Trustees

Heather Noble

Trustee

Sylvia Dyke

Trustee

Davina Fairweather

Deputy Chief Officer

Michelle Kelsall

Trustee

Janet Byatt

Trustee

Len Graham

Transport Operations Assistant

Tim Mountfield

Receptionist & Administrator

Sophie Jones

Finance Officer

Helen Worthington

Arts & Marketing Officer

Charlotte Jackson

Arts & Engagement Officer

Sarah Nelsey

BBO Volunteering Officer

Susie Sutcliffe

Social Group & Befriending Coordinator

Bella Doolan

Social Prescribing Development Officer

Sara Lanyon

3P Big Local Community Development Officer

Thirzah Deakin

Arts Assistant

Sam Bellis

Reception Assistant

Freya Hunstone

School Bus Driver

Graham Roberts

School Bus Driver

Peter Camber

Cleaner

Sue Davies

Chief Officer

Laurel Roberts

Hello from Laurel. I’m the Chief Officer for Qube and, as I have been in this role for 15 years, I’ve seen a lot of growth and change. Before Qube I worked for the Wales Council for Voluntary Action.

Being the Chief Officer at Qube requires me to have an overview of all our services and how they are operating. Because Qube is so diverse this can involve thinking about arts one minute and buses the next. In fact, no two days have been the same in the last 15 years! I also manage our wonderful staff and work to ensure Qube is taking advantages of opportunities and achieving the best for those people in the community who rely on us.

A large part of my role is applying for grants and funding as without these Qube could not deliver the wide range of services it does. We are a charity and so rely heavily on grants and donations from individuals and organisations. I am pleased to say that we have an excellent reputation; the feedback we receive is wonderful. When I’m out and about hearing how well Qube is thought of makes me proud to be part of it.

I work with all the Qube team and with the board of trustees. Outside of Qube I also work closely with Shropshire Council officers and my fellow colleagues in the Voluntary and Community Sector.

I love a lot about my role: the variety, working with our brilliant staff team and volunteers and seeing and hearing the difference that Qube makes to people’s lives in our community. There is a fantastic camaraderie in the office, and we have continued this while all working from home.

Working from home can be made fun. I’m checking in regularly, using our communications software, to see what the rest of the team are posting. So much of it makes me smile, if not laugh out loud. Watching the birds feeding outside my window when I look up from my laptop and stopping now and then for a cuddle with my dogs. Graham, my husband, also keeps coming to tell me jokes he has seen on Facebook. These make me laugh too.

The things I miss most about being at Qube HQ are, of course, seeing all the team, in person, every day. I also miss the people who call into Qube and the volunteers, the chats about anything and everything and the laughing which we do a lot. I miss seeing all the lovely artworks in the gallery and the excitement of not always knowing what each day will bring.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is enjoy a chat and a cuppa face to face with everyone and arrange a visit to Plymouth where my family live to see them and give them a big hug.

My favourite biscuit of all times is a Mint Viscount because they are yummy and remind me of my Nan who always had them in the fridge. I’m also partial to a lemon puff.

My top three lock-down songs are:

Moonlight shadow – Mike Oldfield
Keeping – Embrace
Bad romance – Lady Gaga

Head of Trustees

Heather Noble

Hello. My name is Heather, I have been a trustee with Qube for three years and I am the Chair of Trustees.

 

I had come to know about Qube and some of the valuable work they do in the community as part of my involvement with Oswestry Chamber of Commerce and dealings with Oswestry Town Council. This is why I chose to join the trustee board. I also wanted to be able to offer support through my local contacts, knowledge and skills. Little did I know just how much more to Qube there is!

 

I work closely with Laurel our Chief Officer and my fellow trustees but have been enjoying more regular contact with everyone during the recent crisis.

 

The thing I love most about my role, I have to say, is the team, they truly are amazing. I think it takes a special type of person to work at Qube and fortunately for us not only we have attracted them, but they stay! We have a team with a wide range of skills and experience who come together to create a fabulous support service for the young through to the elderly.

 

On a personal level, I too get to be part of the team. I have learned so much about how charities and the local community work and the types of support our community needs. I’m now much more aware of just how significant a difference Qube makes.

 

I’d struggle to say I’ve made working at home fun. Being unable to see people, unless via a computer screen, is the worst thing. Nevertheless, we have come up with creative ways to keep in touch and make sure we get our fix of silly nonsense each day. The good weather makes things bearable, so I aim to eat my lunch outside, listen to the birds and watch my flowers grow.

 

Not seeing people has been hard enough to deal with, but I miss the Qube building too; I always get a warm welcome. Every time I visit there’s something new, whether it’s art, something for sale in the cabinets or some quirky thing on someone’s desk with a personal story attached to it.

 

Let’s just say when we get back to ‘normal’ there is going to be a lot of hugging going on. I never hugged the team before but I think it’s going to have to be done. So, look out!!!!

 

My favourite biscuit of all times is a fig roll.

 

My top three lock-down songs are

 

Hold My Hand – Jess Glynne (because of the wonderful father and daughter lipsynch and dance routine that went viral
Spell Songs – Scatterseed
Ain’t Nobody – Rufus and Chaka Khan

Trustee

Sylvia Dyke

Hello. My name is Sylvia and I have been a trustee with Qube for just over 2 years, having moved to Shropshire in 2016.

 

I’ve had in many roles throughout my career, all involving working with people: as a social worker, city councillor, justice of the peace, member of a children’s safeguarding board and Healthwatch. I wanted to continue working in the community once I retired and made the excellent decision to help Qube.  I am also involved with the Three Parishes Big Local initiative in Gobowen, St Martin’s and Weston Rhyn.

 

I work closely with Laurel, Bridget, Paula and the other Qube trustees.

 

Qube most definitely helps me to keep my brain active – there are so many different aspects to the work we do. I enjoy meeting new people as well as feeling that I am doing something useful and valuable our community.

 

Since we had to close Qube HQ it has been great to be part of the twice-weekly staff meetings.  It’s not something that we would usually do as trustees but now we can just by sitting at home and joining all the video meetings. When I’m not involved with Qube I am an avid reader and knitter in any spare time and have two dogs to look after.

 

Of course, video, when you see just head and shoulders, is not the same as seeing the whole person, so I do miss visiting everyone and travelling to Oswestry. The first things I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ are a visit to the hairdressers for me and the groomers for my dogs – both are equally important!

 

My favourite biscuit of all times is a plain water biscuit.

 

My top three lock-down songs are

 

  1. The Lark Ascending – Vaughan Williams
  2. Always on my mind – Willie Nelson
  3. Your Never Walk Alone – Gerry and the Pacemakers
Trustee

Davina Fairweather

Hello.  My name is Davina and I have been a trustee for Qube for just over a year.  My background is a varied one.  I started my career in market research and then took on marketing, income generation and fundraising roles in the corporate sector, higher education and charities.  I have worked overseas as well in the UK.  I’m also a governor at Ellesmere College and treasurer of the Oswestry and District Embroiderers’ Guild Branch – ‘StitchPlus’.

 

Qube is such a lovely and worthwhile organisation to be involved with. Being a part of it is really rewarding.  Everyone is so committed and there is an emphasis on getting things done, as opposed to agreeing endless procedures!

 

For the last seven years I have run a consulting business with my business partner so working at home is the norm for me.  Not a lot has changed other than not being able to travel and meet people. In fact, I’m probably much more relaxed now because I’m not travelling to meetings all over the country using the trains.  I’ve given myself permission to slow down and as a result I’ve started to write poetry for the first time since my school days.  It’s a relaxing change from writing business reports.

 

I work most closely with my fellow trustees, Laurel, Jim and Charlotte.  One of the best things about the current arrangement has been for trustees to be able to roll up their sleeves as part of the team and to learn more about what everyone is doing day to day.  I’m sure this is going to make us more effective.

 

Aside from all the smiling faces, with Qube HQ closed I’m missing the art exhibitions which show what a talented community we have.

 

Once we can meet with other people, I’m going to enjoy seeing friends and family for coffee and lunch and to see the sea, though how long it will take to persuade myself to travel again by train I’m not sure.

 

I never buy or eat sweet biscuits as a rule but to compensate for our circumstances my choice has been a chocolate digestive.  It was quite a shock to see that they have suffered from global thinning – they’re half the thickness they used to be.

 

It’s almost impossible to narrow music down to my top three lockdown songs, however, I have chosen:

 

  1. Peter Gabriel – In Your Eyes (with Youssou N’Dour)
  2. Michael McGoldrick, John McCusker, John Doyle – Leaving Uist / Lochaber Badger
  3. Clannad – I Will Find You

 

I must also squeeze in Happy by Pharrell Williams.

Deputy Chief Officer

Michelle Kelsall

Hello. My name is Michelle and I am the Transport Supervisor for Dial-a-Ride. Many of you will have heard my voice when you telephone Qube. I’m responsible for organising transport for members, working with our volunteers and the rest of our amazing team.

I have worked for Qube for just over10 years. Before Qube my career was in road transport haulage, so I’m on very familiar ground. As part of my job I work mostly with Tim, Sophie and Laurel. I’m fortunate because I oversee Qube in Laurel’s (who is our Chief Officer) absence so I get to work closely with everyone.

Qube is an exciting place to work. A typical day at Qube involves a lot of talking, phone calls and a much-needed constant stream of tea (thank you to my colleagues!). A never-ending supply of biscuits and cakes, generously provide by our wonderful members and volunteers, definitely adds pleasure to my day.

The thing I love most about my role is the constant banter in the transport and reception areas, either between Sophie, Tim and me, or with members of staff and volunteers walking through to the kitchen (hence the endless supply of tea!). We are lucky that there is a lot of laughter at Qube HQ.

It’s been quite a new experience working from home.  We are such a close team, so we still have a lot of contact and laughs communicating through SLACK which is our internal messaging system set up by Bridget. Heather, our Chair of Trustees, gave each of us a toy bunny before we started to work from home; we will be sending pictures of our bunnies in various places doing various things! We hold a bi-weekly ‘Qubra’ meeting via Zoom and this is great fun (as well as talking about the serious stuff of course). It’s so nice to see everyone – albeit on a screen.

Since we have been working from home I realise how much I miss the busy transport office. Just having a chat with our members and my colleagues, many of whom I’ve worked with for a long time, knowing that they are ok are really important. The tea rota is not as good at home as it is in the office, however!

When we can go back to work I’m going to wonder what on earth has hit me!! It will take readjustment (again). I’m looking forward to catching up with people: just going into the building and saying ‘good morning’ (like I always do!) to all the staff and volunteers that arrive before the building opens. And then, switching the Dial-a-Ride phone lines on at 10am, thinking – I wonder who will be the first person to call Qube?

My favourite biscuit of all times? It’s a Mint Viscount – they remind me of visiting my nana; you knew they were saved for VIP visitors. And, French Fancies.

My top three lock-down songs are

  1. Dancing Queen – Abba
  2. A Kind of magic – Queen
  3. Set Fire to the Rain – Adele
Trustee

Janet Byatt

Hello. My name is Janet and I have been a trustee with Qube for 8+ years. I chose to be a trustee for Qube because I was at a turning point with my own business and felt I would have a bit of time to spare (this turned out to be wishful thinking!). I had been involved some years earlier with the initial set-up of Dial-a Ride, which has gone from strength to strength, and had experience of working in community education. I felt I had business experience to offer and, most important, I wanted to give something back to the community.

I work closely with Laurel our Chief Officer and our other Qube trustees.

The things I love most about my role are trying (because what Qube does is so diverse!) to explain to people what Qube is and observing the organisation moving from strength to strength, even though this isn’t always reflected in the finances! Not everyone understands that we are a charity and that we must work hard to find the resources to support our work.

I’ve really enjoyed seeing employees developing in strength and focus. Recently it’s also been good to use my Qube experience when volunteering as a trustee for three organisations in the area where I now live. I can’t underestimate what being a trustee has given me in terms of broadening my experience in financial management, HR issues, IT issues and so on.

I’ve made working from home fun by not fighting the urge to go outside and enjoy the sun and the garden. I had many years of working from home before I retired 3 years ago and enjoyed the garden and even, dare I say it, wiping down kitchen surfaces and that kind of mundane task. These things are good thinking time and invaluable for coming to a resolution of a tricky problem.

The things I miss most about meeting at Qube (as normal) are the camaraderie, looking at the exhibitions, checking out how everyone is.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is to go and give my family lots of hugs, and receive some in turn. I do miss that. As for Qube, it will be good to catch up with colleagues in person.

My favourite biscuit of all times is home-made almond crispies. Yum.

My top three lock-down songs are

  1. I Want to Break Free – Queen
  2. We Can Work It Out – The Beatles
  3. I’m So Glad – Cream
Trustee

Len Graham

Hello. My name is Len. I’ve been a trustee with Qube for10 years so have seen how the organisation’s services have evolved in response to needs within the community. I keep a watchful eye on Qube’s finances.

I chose to be a trustee because I have known the organisation more or less since it began and I like the unique range of services Qube delivers. Being a local organisation Qube knows the issues within the community and has proved it can respond rapidly to new situations. Qube is flexible and can combine activities, such as the arts and social groups, for everyone, including the more vulnerable.

Qube is an exciting organisation to work with. I enjoy its stimulating art exhibitions and events and its ability to provide for those who would otherwise not have any support.

I work most closely with Laurel, Jim, and Charlotte, and I admire all the staff for their expertise and dedication.

The things I love most about my role include: looking for ways to financially support Qube’s services in difficult times, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic; the development of new services and supporting Qube’s work with other organisations and groups in the area. This is to ensure that we can have the maximum impact, especially in our rural areas.

Working outside in the sunshine, when I can, has certainly made having to be at home more fun.  Preparing good cups of expresso coffee, using my little Turkish coffee pot, has made a difference too!

Not being able to go into Qube HQ means I am missing the buzz, the craic, and the creativity!  This means that the first things I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ are to walk through the doors, greet everyone and see how they are, and then visit our latest exhibition.

My favourite biscuit of all times is…Garibaldi: he was a great Italian leader who unified Italy.  Abraham Lincoln,  Charles Dickens and Che Guevara all spoke well of him and  historian A. J. P. Taylor called him “the only wholly admirable figure in modern history”.  But most of all it’s because I like the currants!

My top three lock-down songs are all performed by Duo Asi Son who we just happened to hear one Sunday morning in a cafe/bar in Cienfuego during a visit to Cuba. Their music is uplifting, lovely singing with magical rhythms. We got it out specially for lockdown and it works.

  1. Sobre una tumba una rumba
  2. Sabroso
  3. Hojas para bano
Transport Operations Assistant

Tim Mountfield

Hello, my name is Tim. I am Qube’s Transport Operations Assistant and have worked for Qube for nearly three years.  Before working for Qube I had roles in wine sales and delivery.

Being involved in Dial A Ride and other transport activities means my role is a varied one.  I work closely with our volunteers, making sure that they are in the right place at the right time and have everything they need.  I’m also involved in making sure our vehicles are safe and in good running order.

Another important part of my role is to take customer bookings. This is a great opportunity to talk to the people who depend on our services and make sure that they are all ok.

Qube occupies quite a large building over two floors and there is usually something that needs fixing or checking so building maintenance comes under my responsibility too.

I work most closely with our Transport Manager, Michelle and, as I am based just behind reception, I see a lot of people coming and going.

My role gives me the opportunity to achieve something worthwhile every day.  I really enjoying working with volunteers and our great staff team.  The variety of services we offer means there’s never a dull moment!

While I’ve been at home over the past few weeks, I can honestly say that my gardening skills have improved.  I’ve rediscovered exercise including cycling and have taken part in daily challenges for the 2.6 Challenge.

I’ve certainly missed the team and our volunteers and the buzz that is Qube! Getting back to some normality is going to involve having a cup of coffee with everyone.  Then, I’ll pick up where I left off and press on.

I’m not a biscuit lover so It’s difficult to choose a favourite – perhaps a fig roll.

My top three (well, four) lock-down songs are

  1. Black – Pearl Jam
  2. Drunk in Love – Beyonce
  3. Sunshine in Leith – The Proclaimers
  4. Zombie – The Cranberries
Receptionist & Administrator

Sophie Jones

Hello.  My name is SophieI have worked for Qube for nearly four years. In fact, I first joined Qube as an apprentice when I was 17 and have stayed ever since. Now I’m Qube’s Business Administrator.  I might be the first person you meet when you come through our doors at Qube HQ, which is why a big part of my job is meeting and greeting customers, or, the person who answers your telephone call.

Qube receives a lot of phone calls with enquiries about all sorts of things from booking courses and rooms, information and advice. Mostly we can help but if not, we will direct you to other organisations who can.

The breadth of enquiries means that I work closely with all staff at Qube. It’s important for me to know everything that’s going on within our building (and that’s a lot!) to deliver the best service possible for our customers.

The best parts of my job are interacting with you all, working with Qube staff and volunteers and helping so many people day to day. I’m really missing working with everyone and seeing all our regular and new customers.

Just to reassure you – I’m still answering all the phone calls even though I’m working from home.  I am hearing a lot about all the lovely meals you are preparing and the cakes you are baking!  We have some experts cooks and chefs in the making.

When I’m not working, I’m listening to lots of music (see my favourites later) and my radio!  Once we can all meet up again, I am looking forward to seeing all my family.

My favourite biscuit of all times? Hmm it’s difficult to choose between custard creams and bourbons.

My top three lock-down songs are by

  1. Beyonce
  2. Anderson Paak
  3. The Fratellis
Finance Officer

Helen Worthington

Hello.  My name is Helen and I am the finance officer for Qube. I have worked for Qube for nearly 6 years. Before Qube I worked for PAVO (Powys Association of Voluntary Organisations) as a senior finance officer.

I work closely with Laurel, our chief officer and all my colleagues.

A typical day at Qube involves me in everything to do with the financial management of Qube, which is a charity.  This involves inputting purchase and sales invoices on to the accounts package and raising payments. I look after the card, website, cash and till takings each day and make sure money is assigned to the correct department. I keep a close eye on our bank account, making sure that everything is accounted for.

Important parts of my role include preparing quarterly management accounts and providing finance information for our chief officer and trustees as well as the different projects leaders.

The things I love most about my role are what many people really dislike: figures and spreadsheets! Working with my colleagues is also a lot of fun too, I have missed working with them. I’m looking forward to their company and catching up with what they have been up to over the weekends etc.

Once we can open up Qube HQ again I am really going to value how quick the photocopier is and the convenience of the scanner for copying documents!  In my lunch break I’m going to enjoy popping to Oswestry’s many shops.

The first things I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ are go for a coffee and cake, have drink at a pub and take a trip to the seaside for some fish and chips

My favourite biscuit of all times is a milk chocolate digestive.

For my lockdown songs I would choose anything I can dance to.

Arts & Marketing Officer

Charlotte Jackson

Hello, my name is Charlotte and I am Qube’s Arts Officer. I look after exhibitions and projects as well as our graphic design, website and social media. I’ve worked for Qube for 10 years and before then I volunteered as a youth worker.

A typical day at Qube might involve me curating the exhibitions and putting artists’ work on display for sale in our art gallery, digital marketing and graphic design – updating the website and social media pages and creating leaflets and posters. I work on our community projects such as Qube’s successful Men on the Gates and Homefront Heroines.  I’m also involved in important outreach work so that the arts are widely accessible and deal with all enquiries about arts at Qube.

The things I love most about my role are being surrounded by so many talented people; the creativity in our community never ceases to amaze me. Also, highlighting the incredibly brave stories of local people. Oswestry has a thriving and fascinating arts and heritage community and Qube plays a large part in encouraging and supporting it.

I’ve made working from home fun by listening to music. I also love the chat between staff online. A lot of it is bonkers but it serves as a reminder that there’s always someone there.

Being at home I am missing the office and kitchen banter from staff and volunteers which can be quite special. I miss seeing people in our gallery admiring other people’s work, never knowing who is going to come in or ring next. I also miss just going for a walk around town in my lunchbreak and bumping into familiar faces.

I’m looking forward to catching up with staff and volunteers again. Outside of work I can’t wait to meet up with friends for a proper run and go off exploring somewhere new.

My favourite biscuits of all times are chocolate chip cookies, closely followed by chocolate digestives. Neither lasts very long.

I have my Alexa on all day, and the music can vary greatly depending on what kind of day I’m having. This has made picking three songs difficult. My current top three lock-down songs are

  1. Biblical – Biffy Clyro
  2. The Chain – Fleetwood Mac
  3. Caution – The Killers
Arts & Engagement Officer

Sarah Nelsey

BBO Volunteering Officer

Susie Sutcliffe

Hello!  My name is Susie. I am the Volunteering Officer and I have worked for Qube for 18 months. I work closely with Sophie (who you may often meet at Qube’s reception) and a wonderful volunteer, Debbie, who comes in weekly to help with the Volunteer Plus section on the Qube website (wwwqube-oca.org.uk/volunteering). The thing I love most about my role is my colleagues, they are vital for support and morale.

Before working for Qube I worked with volunteers in a hospice, facilitating activities for patients. I have also worked in health and social care, supporting parents with young children and vulnerable adults and been a foster carer.

A typical day at Qube is a busy one!  Communicating with everyone is important so, I have a lot of emails to deal with and colleagues to update. I check Volunteer Plus for new registrations and contact everyone, sometimes directing them to one of our registered organisations who need volunteers.

There are regular meetings with potential volunteers to register them on the Building Better Opportunities (BBO) programme. This project provides pre-employment support for disadvantaged people aged 19 and over who are not in work.  Participants can receive training, education or volunteering opportunities to prepare them for employment.  I get satisfaction from seeing their confidence increase, improvements in wellbeing and progress in whatever they want to achieve.

I’ve made working from home fun by listening to the radio – a mix of chat and music, taking regular breaks – I go into my garden for fresh air and exercise. I’m lucky to have my cat for company. It’s good to connect with colleagues on Zoom for our twice weekly updates and sharing.

The things I miss most about working at Qube are being with my colleagues and coffee time. I miss the chat and banter, the mix of personalities and catching up on their social life and families. I find this encouraging and helps work to flow. Coffee time is a shared experience – each of us offering to make and deliver drinks for each other. It’s very much a team effort and there are often biscuits involved. I’m not a massive biscuit eater, but when I do I’ll go for a plain digestive or a plain chocolate digestive.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is give my colleagues a smile and a hug.

I don’t have any specific songs I’m listening to.  I listen to the radio, live gigs by individuals/small duos/groups on fb or YouTube eg Jive dance music, spiritual devotional songs or world music.

Social Group & Befriending Coordinator

Bella Doolan

Hello.  My name is Bella I am one of Qube’s Social Group and Befriending Co-Ordinators. I also have a role within the Social Prescribing Development team and with Community Connectors. I work closely with voluntary sector organisations Shropshire Council, as well as lots of small groups, organisations and individuals in the community.

I have worked for Qube for about a year and a half having worked previously in public libraries.

A typical day at Qube involves me in a lot of activities: communicating via email, telephone and in person, sharing information and organising Community Connectors’ Networking meetings.

I am involved with planning and organising our successful weekly Social Group meetings, working with our wonderful Volunteers to create a safe and welcoming environment.  I’m always looking for groups and organisations who would like to be in Qube’s Local Directory and support our Social Prescribing Programme.  (Do get in touch if you or your organisation would like to be included in the directory or speaker programme.) To date speakers have included astronomers, the Wildlife Trust, chocolate makers and scam awareness professionals.

The things I love most about my role are many! No two days are the same; there is always a variety of things to do. I enjoy meeting and working with some fabulous people, individuals and groups, helping to build and strengthen relationships through networking meetings, communications and matching up volunteers with Qube members. I enjoy being creative and planning a varied programme of speakers and activities.

I’ve made working from home fun by listening to music.  It’s been good to stay in touch with my colleagues especially on our online messaging tool, which links everyone at home, and we can see each other. Talking to my cuddly toy (Beyoncé) helps too.

I am missing being with my colleagues, the hot water urn which provides tea (with biscuits) – frequently, working with all Qube’s group members, community groups and volunteers and looking round our art gallery.

When things get back to ‘normal’ there’s a lot I have planned; my full list is too long to mention everything:

  1. hug my family and friends whether they like it or not!
  2. get a massage, my hair and nails done
  3. go to the beach
  4. do a repair café
  5. book tickets for trips and activities, including the Foundling Museum in London, Winchester Cathedral to see the kneelers

My favourite biscuit of all times is a Kimberley Biscuit (ginger sponge and marshmallow).

My top three lock-down songs are

  1. Chandelier – Sia
  2. I Won’t Complain – Benjamin Clementine
  3. I Can’t Help Myself – The Four Tops
Social Prescribing Development Officer

Sara Lanyon

Hello!  My name is……Sara. I am the new Social Prescribing Community Development Officer and at the time of writing I have worked for Qube for five hours!

Before working for Qube I was a keyworker at Treflach Farm (a scheme supporting young people in crisis).

Before that I worked in environmental education and community development. I’ve worked for Shropshire Wildlife Trust, the National Trust at Attingham and the Field Studies Council.   I’m teaching natural history online at the moment – I’m a proper geek and proud of it too!

I will work closely with……Michelle, Laurel (get well soon Laurel!), Bella and Sophie at Qube, plus Social Prescribing partners across Shropshire.

The things I am looking forward most to in my role are…meeting new people, joining the fantastic team at Qube, plus supporting and developing the  Social Prescribing network. It’s a valuable activity that will contribute to Qube’s work, making a real difference to people’s lives in Shropshire.

I’ve going to make working from home fun by taking one day at a time and celebrating the little everyday things.  I regularly get up and dance round the lounge with my kids and have some cracking music and podcasts to listen to.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is……hug everyone, starting with my parents – I miss them!

Oh, and my favourite biscuit of all times is……a fresh home-baked Cranks country biscuit…(but dark choc Hobnobs come a close second, followed by Rich Tea, then Custard Creams…I could go on)

And, my top three lock-down songs are (at the moment- this changes daily!)

1. Starman – David Bowie
2. Give me a Kiss to Build a Dream On – Louis Armstrong
3. Moon River – Audrey Hepburn

3P Big Local Community Development Officer

Thirzah Deakin

Arts Assistant

Sam Bellis

Reception Assistant

Freya Hunstone

School Bus Driver

Graham Roberts

Hello!  My name is Graham. I am Qube’s primary school bus driver, a role I have enjoyed for four and a half years.  Before working for Qube I was retired and fostered rescued greyhounds.

A typical day at Qube involves me collecting children in the morning, taking them to school and then picking them up again in the afternoon to get them home safely. I really enjoy talking to the children and listening to all their stories.  I’ve been fortunate to have such a lovely bunch throughout my time with Qube.  The only downside is when they move to secondary school but at least some still come to the bus stop to collect siblings so I get to see and chat to them again which is brilliant.

I work closely with Michelle and Tim in transport who support me in my role.  It’s always nice when I pop into Qube for a chat and catch up with them.

I’ve made being at home fun over the past 12 weeks by going for runs, working in the garden and walking our dogs.  Completing the 2.6 challenge was great fun; seeing all the other staff’s efforts spurred me on in mine!

The things I miss most about not working at Qube at the moment are seeing the children and hearing what’s going on with them, chatting to my fellow bus driver, sharing our news and having the daily chat with Tim or Michelle.  Even though we only chat for a minute or two it’s always fun and I do miss the contact with them.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is sign up to do a half marathon, closely followed by catching up with Qube staff and a day at the sea.

Oh, and my favourite biscuit of all times is…Am I the only person at Qube that doesn’t eat biscuits????

My top three lock-down songs are

  1. Bomber – Motorhead
  2. Trance – Scorpions
  3. Thunderstruck – AC/DC
  4. And, because I haven’t chosen a biscuit I’m adding a song – Danger Zone – Rainbow
School Bus Driver

Peter Camber

Hello, my name is Peter, Qube’s schools & community bus driver and a volunteer car driver. I have worked for Qube for just over three years. Before working for Qube I worked as a transport manager and a production planner for a large plastics company, as well as having a variety of factory roles.

A typical day at Qube involves me arriving at the yard, looking over the vehicle to check it’s safe to drive.  I’m also responsible for ensuring that all the vehicles are clean and tidy- inside and out! Once I’m satisfied I will collect the children and take them to their school. At the end of the day I make sure they are safely collected and dropped home.  I really enjoy chatting to the children, we do maths and spelling on the bus most journeys!

In between school runs I will also be driving the community bus or taking elderly or vulnerable people for hospital/doctor appointments in my car.  I find that chatting with people helps to brighten their day, and mine.

I work closely with Michelle and Tim in the Dial-A-Ride office as well as the volunteer drivers and passenger assistants.

I’ve made being at home fun by constantly winding my partner up! I’ve also been out on my bike a lot and for walks, together with games of cricket and football in the park.

The things I miss most about working at Qube (as normal) are most definitely the interactions and banter with the office staff and volunteers. We all have such a great laugh.

The first thing I’m going to do when things get back to ‘normal’ is visit my family in Kent.

I confess to eating most biscuits so it’s difficult to choose a favourite!

And, as for lockdown favourites, I very rarely listen to music. I much prefer watching football, boxing and darts.

Cleaner

Sue Davies