Friday 4 December 2015

Living life to the full

We are so pleased to be able tell you about a delightful book that we have recently had the joy and pleasure of reading. "My First Eighty Years" by Jill Nicholls is a delightful narrative of life, adventures, travel and nursing by a truly inspiring local lady who has certainly enjoyed life to the fullest. This beautiful book takes one from the Authors childhood here in Somerset with her beloved family, across the world and back via various countries and experiences through to the current day. Here is someone who has grasped life with both hands, not allowing health problems to trim her wings in any way. This is such an inspiring, enjoyable and charming read and would make a very nice Christmas present indeed. 

If you are interested in purchasing a copy please ring 01823 342452. 

Friday 30 October 2015

Oops a mistake, our apologies

We are sorry but we appear to have given the incorrect telephone number to contact in our previous post. Please accept our apologies. The correct number is as follows;

01278 456240

We do hope this has not deterred you and look forward to an enjoyable meal with you all.

Tuesday 27 October 2015

Christmas lunch

We are delighted to tell you about our Christmas Lunch on Wednesday 2nd December 2015. If you would like to join us for some festive enjoyment, then please call us on 01278 456240. We have included the menu for your perusal.

                                                  Christmas Party Lunch Menu
                                                            £16.50 Per Person

                                            Somerset Bowel Cancer Support Group
                                                           December 2nd 2015
                                                               Meet at 12:30

 Traditional Roast Turkey with Leek & Chestnut Stuffing and Bacon wrapped Sausage(GF*)
 Slow Roasted Somerset Pork Loin with Roasted Apple and a Brandy Cream Sauce (GF)
                  Slow Braised Brisket with Wild Mushroom, Red Wine & Thyme Sauce(GF)
                                Baked Cod Loin on Baby Spinach with Parsley Sauce(GF)
                    Cashew, Brazil Nut & Goat’s Cheese Nut Roast with Creamy Tomato Sauce(V)

                       All served with roasted and mashed potatoes & freshly cooked vegetables
                           Cottage Made Christmas Pudding(GF*) Served with brandy sauce
                     Warm Chocolate & Hazlenut Brownie(GF*) Served with vanilla ice cream
                             Raspberry & Lemon Cheesecake Served with clotted cream
                                          Blackmore Farm Vanilla Ice Cream(GF*)
                                       Freshly Brewed Tea or Coffee & Warm Mince Pie
                   The Cottage Inn, Keenthorne, Nether Stowey, Bridgwater, Somerset, TA5 1HZ
                                  Tel: 01278 732355  Email:
                                    (Served from 23rd November – 9th January inclusive**)

We really hope you can join us and look forward to seeing you there. Please don't forget to ring on the number at the top of the page to book your place.

Sunday 18 October 2015

Fundraising update - London Marathon entry

Yesterday, whilst attending our Autumn Event, one of our professional colleagues told us that she has been successful in gaining a place in the London Marathon - a great feat in itself, let alone running the marathon.  She kindly informed us that she intended running for the support group!! We cannot tell you how grateful we are and are truly excited by this. A "just giving"page will be set up by our colleague if people wish to sponsor her and we will keep you up to date with her preparations in the run up to the event. We are expecting a very successful outcome as our colleague is a seasoned runner and competes every year in our own local Taunton Marathon with good times, hence the entry to the "Big One" in London.

As we get more details, we will post them here so keep coming back to see how things are progressing and hopefully we will be able to upload photos after the event.

Saturday 17 October 2015

Oh my.......

Well, what can we say other than a huge "thank you" to all of you who came today. There was well over a hundred attendees and we cannot tell you how lovely it was to see you.

We had some really exceptional speakers today who talked about travelling with a stoma, plus an update on the latest techniques in surgery, both of which were extremely interesting and informative talks. As always, their was a question and answer session with professionals made up from our local colorectal cancer team, which was again a lively session with some lovely ad-libbing from our very own chairman of the support group.

We also are delighted to tell you about the premiere of a DVD for newly diagnosed patients which has been made by the Trust in conjunction with Clinton Rogers (yes, the man on the telly) to help as you are diagnosed and need to know what is happening; it features real patients who have been there too, who kindly agreed to help in the making of such a thing possible; thank you.This was very well received and, indeed, we were able to introduce some of the stars of the DVD who attended today. Hollywood beckons!

Thank you also to Mr Colin Drummond, Chairman of Taunton & Somerset NHS Trust who has once again attended the event and stayed for the day with us, for the second year running. This really is very generous of you and is truly appreciated. Thank you also to our local Conservative MP, Rebecca Pow, for popping in to see us.

We enjoyed a very nice lunch provided by the Somerset Cricket Ground which allowed plenty of opportunity for us to mingle and catch up with you all, such a delightful part of the day.

We would like to take the time too, to say, a HUGE thank you to the couple who raised in excess of £1000 to donate to the group from the combined celebration for their respective milestone birthdays (both 21 again, of course!). This was a very generous gesture to make and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

We also received an update on the Smarty Pants tubes that were introduced at last year's event. These have raised in excess of £700 pounds over the year, thank you. Once again there was a plentiful supply of tubes to be emptied of their original contents, to take away to continue this excellent idea for fundraising.

As we get to grips with technology we are hoping to be able to add presentations etc to the blog and the website, our sister presence on the net, so please keep visiting to be updated.

Thursday 15 October 2015

Looking forward to seeing you......

Well, we are really looking forward to seeing well over one hundred of you on Saturday and we are very excited. We do hope that you will like the programme we have put together. We are well supported with the local clinical teams/members of staff from our local Hospital. The support group will have a stand so please come up and say hello, or if you are interested in becoming more active in the group, we would love to hear from you. Once again we will have a raffle with some very fine offerings should you wish to try your luck with a ticket. 

We look forward to seeing you all there. Please can we just remind you to use the entrance on the Priory Bridge Road.

Tuesday 15 September 2015

Date for your diary

Just a quick post to remind you that our Autumn Event is scheduled for Saturday 17th October at the Somerset County Cricket Ground in Taunton. We will soon be sending out invites and, if you would like to attend, then do please let us know for numbers and catering purposes on the telephone number below.
Once again we hope to have a packed programme for you and very much hope that you will join us.

Telephone: 01823 342452

Wednesday 8 July 2015

Exciting news

We are excited to announce that the colorectal nursing team are piloting a cancer manual for patients living with and beyond cancer,  "So what do I do now; the Cancer Manual 1st Edition". This has been produced in collaboration with NHS Lothian based upon their Heart Manual. The aim of the manual is to assist patients to an improved quality of health, wellbeing and survivorship following their diagnosis of colorectal cancer. The pilot will run for 12 months with patients being asked to take part in the trial by receiving the manual, using it to assist/guide them to optimise their health whether they are post surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy or living with cancer. As part of the trial you will also be asked to give feedback on the content of the manual and the interval at which you received it by undertaking two questionnaires at set intervals.

If you meet any of these criteria, or indeed are interested to know if you do, please contact the colorectal nursing team on 01823 342452, who will be happy to discuss this with you.

We have attached the link to the NHS Lothian website for you to browse;

Tuesday 30 June 2015


We were recently sent this poem by a delightful lady who has an amazing joie de vivre for life despite her health problems;

Try to remember the good times

Erase from your mind all the bad.
Think of the times you were happy,
Not of the ones you were sad.

Bury the hurts you were given

Banish them deep underground;
The past is a patchwork of memories
Treasure the bright squares you have found.

You may regret what has happened,

You may deplore what is past
But make happy memories tomorrow
And pray they're the ones that will last.

What words of wisdom for us all. It is all so easy to get mixed up in the emotions of anger, frustration, despair but to forget the pleasure in the simple things in life. Nothing feels better than the joy of a new day, long summer evenings, sun ripened strawberries, being with those we love. In the words of Maya Angelou, 

"You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. Please remember, your difficulties do not define you. They simply strengthen your ability to overcome".

Therefore, in the words of Friedrich Nietzsche " Life is not a dress rehearsal. This is it". So enjoy every moment, as recommended by Bill Watersono when he says 
“We're so busy watching out for what's just ahead of us that we don't take time to enjoy where we are.”  That's now he is talking about.

Monday 29 June 2015

Golden Wedding donation

We would like to say a huge "thank you" to Mary and Michael Graham who celebrated their Golden Wedding on 22nd August 2014. They have made a large donation to the group having raised money for us from this celebration. That is a truly wonderful thing to have done and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Not only this but their Grandaughter will also be raising funds for charity when she undertakes a gruelling cycle ride later this year.

The happy couple are pictured below cutting their cake.

Thank you so much to this "golden" couple for their generosity.

Sunday 19 April 2015

Thank you

Well, thank you to all of you who attended the AGM on Saturday at West Monkton Village Hall. It was so lovely to see so many of you, to have a round up on what has been happening with the charity over the last year and look forward to the coming year. As always, it was lovely to catch up with you over coffee and then lunch to see how you are all doing. What a busy of people you all are! We also really enjoy hearing about what you would like us to focus on for the coming year so, even if you didn't manage to get to the event, we are always happy to hear about suggestions from you.

Our intrepid Rocksolid team also had a good selection of photos on show for everyone to see how they raised the, just over, two thousand pounds in sponsorship; with gift aid this should take the final sum to just over £2,500. Wow, what an amazing achievement guys, thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts.

Our next formal meeting is the Autumn Event on Saturday 17th October 2015, where we invite old and new people to come along to a packed programme of speakers, professional updates and panel of experts. If you would like to be added to the list for the day, please do not hesitate to let us know on 01823 342452. please save the day for us.

Thursday 16 April 2015

Our blog anniversary!!

For the eagle eyed of you, you may have spotted that we are now just over a year old and are therefore celebrating our first anniversary of the blog this month. We are so excited by this and the fact that we will soon celebrate two thousand hits to the blog. We do hope you like the content and are always happy to take suggestions for topics/content. We would also be delighted to post any pictures of achievements you have undertaken for us - judging by the number of hits since the Rocksolid pictures were uploaded - we are assuming you do too, but please let us know.

Wednesday 15 April 2015

Just a little reminder........

Just a little reminder that we are holding our Annual General Meeting on Saturday 18th April 2015 at the West Monkton Village Hall . Please do come along, we would be delighted to see you. We will update you about what we have been doing, sort out the nitty gritty of running the charity and would love to hear about any ideas and suggestions from you. Plus, we always love to catch up with you and hear how you are doing.

For those of you who have any filled Smartie boxes, we would be happy to receive them on Saturday.

We are looking forward to seeing you all there.

Tuesday 24 March 2015

and a couple more...

Hm, minus two degrees in here you say? Really!

601: Why go to your local pharmacy for a mud pack when you can get one free courtesy of Rocksolid!

362: You're kidding , right?

Sunday 22 March 2015

Just a peek to be going on with....

The intrepid team, minus two ladies with fairy wings
Team working at its best
Nearly home and dry

And still they are smiling!
The final climb to victory

A large number of the team are on this obstacle at once!

We will add more as we bring them all together. It was hard but such a great day! In the words of JFK " We do these things not because they are easy".

Saturday 21 March 2015

They did it......

Just a quick post to say, they did it one and all. What an amazing group and what team work and sportsmanship. A particular thank you to the three ladies who are non nhs workers but completed the course for us, your are awesome. Also, we just wanted to say, who said chivalry was dead? The three gentlemen taking part were absolutely charming, chivalrous and absolute team players. Exactly what one wants in any team. A huge, huge thank you to you all for spending your Saturday in chest deep mud and freezing water, keeping the team going and generally making it an enjoyable and memorable experience.
To all who took part, you are truly great people and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Pictures to follow but, apologies, feeling a little tired for some reason tonight!!

For the rest of the MDT - the gauntlet has been laid down !

Friday 20 March 2015

The big event

Well, the day is nigh on here and, out there tonight, are 6 or 7 intrepid souls who may be having a few wobbles about just why did they sign up to do the Rocksolid Race tomorrow, a few nerves may beginning to show, a few inward sighs. BUT intrepid souls, you are amazing and you can do it. Take your time, enjoy it and have fun. It is about participating, getting round and working as a team. We believe in you and want you to know that, with many others, we are rooting for you. Go team go. We are proud of you and will be with you, in our minds, every muddy, wet, slip slidey, solid wall, ice bath, single step of the way. You are amazing, truly amazing.

We aim to add photos here after the event, so keep coming back over the next few days to get a glimpse of just what this amazing team went through to raise funds for our charity.

Friday 13 March 2015

We give you the intrepid team....

Well, some may call them foolish, some may call them mad, we call them our intrepid team!!

 In seven days time tomorrow, they will be undertaking a gruelling 5k obstacle course that includes a whole lot of obstacles, mud and water, all in aid of our great charity. Oh my, the picture opportunities will be endless. Let us hope the weather is kind and that they come out intact in mind and body - you are all due on duty Monday morning sharp guys, so take care of those limbs. More importantly, have fun, yes fun, in getting round the course. Just think how great you will feel when you have completed it - what an achievement it will be and you will have raised not only some sponsorship but also the profile of this charity. We couldn't ask for more. So, keep up the hard work in preparing, you are nearly there (and it is nearly over!). Then you just have to think of the next one, or more importantly, challenge your colleagues to take part in, all in aid of this good cause, of course. 

Go "Some Bums", go!!! We are right "behind" you 😄😄😄😄😄

Something to sing about.......

Well, ladies and gentleman, you are in for such a treat. Philip Scrivener, the Assistant Conductor of this country's renowned BACH CHOIR is to direct a "Come & Sing" Event on Saturday 16th May 2015.

Here is a chance to enjoy beautiful music, in beautiful surroundings with like minded people to make a joyous sound, directed by an eminent man on your doorstep. What more could you want?

Philip was a choirboy at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Chard, Somerset. He won a scholarship to The Choir of Westminster Abbey, aged just 9. His achievements thereafter are many and you can peruse these on his website:

He is a great musician, whose warm and modest personality is immediately recognised by everyone he directs and teaches. You will enjoy the programme of music he has chosen, which gives singers an opportunity to sing music written by eminent composers born in the 17th, 19th and 20th centuries.
Handel: Zadok the Priest/my heart is inditing
Bruckner: Os justi meditabitur/Ave Maria
Rutter: Requiem
Full details can be found by visiting the following website:


Click on Philip's photograph, which will take you to a page where you can click two buttons to find all of the relevant information and booking form. Print the booking form and send to :
Lorraine Cooke
Come & Sing Secretary
35 Foxglove Way

Saturday 7 March 2015

Such a good day!

Well, what a good day today at the Living Well Exhibition that was held at the Somerset County Cricket Ground. Thank you to all of you who came to support the group and say hello, it was lovely to see so many of you. It was certainly a busy day and there was a really good selection of stall holders from fitness, food producers, local interest and volunteer groups and so much more. All of the feedback from today will be collated, so watch this space to hear the up to date news about further days.

The next date for your diary is Saturday 18th April when we will be having our Annual General Meeting to bring together a review of the last year, undertake the nitty gritty of the Support Group, as well as meeting as a group, collate any suggestions from you as to what you want from us and generally plan the next year. The meeting will be held at the West Monkton Village Hall. Invites will be coming out shortly, however, we always welcome people who would like to pop along. Please let us know if you would like to attend on 01823 342452, for numbers and catering purposes.

Can we just add that we are always interested if you would like to become more involved with the group, by volunteering on our event days, or by offering any skills you have that we may need to run the group, or indeed by becoming a member of our committee. We are always looking for new members to help us. If you are interested and would like to help us run the group, then please let us know on 01823 342452, we look forward to hearing from you. 

Saturday 14 February 2015

Date for your Diary..

We would like to let you know about an exciting new event event that is being held at the Somerset County Cricket Club on Saturday 7th March 2015, 10:30 til 2:30. There is payable parking on site or it is near the centre of Taunton and on many bus routes or convenient for the many car parks situated around Taunton.

 It is the Living Well Exhibition, an event for people living with and beyond cancer. There will be all sorts of people present from your local professional nurse specialists for bowel, urology, gynaecological, skin and breast cancer, as well as organisations to help you get fit, to promote healthy eating, to inspire new hobbies, volunteering and more. Your local support group will be represented as well as others from the various specialities.

This is an event that has been organised by Musgrove Park Hospital in conjunction with Macmillan Cancer Support to promote survivorship in cancer care.

It is the first event of its kind and we would very much like for you to be there and also to let us know what you think about it.

If you would like to attend, please do come along; we look forward to seeing you there.  Please pop along to our support group stand and say hello, we will be delighted to see you.

Monday 9 February 2015

Six weeks and counting....

Our intrepid team of professionals are gearing themselves up for the Rocksolid on 21st March 2015. The course has been published and there are some "interesting" obstacles within the race that include a lot of mud, water and daring do! Oh my, there should be some interesting pictures to add to our gallery; you may see some of the professionals as never anticipated BUT it is all for a good cause, your cause and to raise the profile of bowel cancer. What other way would you want to spend  a Saturday other than with your colleagues clambering over, under, and through all manner of obstacles   (30 in just over 5 kilometres) that just happen to be located on, in or near mud and water!! Keep up that training guys, we are behind you, ok maybe with a strategically placed camera or two but hey, all for a good cause.

If you would like to sponsor the team then please call 01823 342452.