Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Raising awareness of Parkinson’s in North Devon

09:39 26 April 2014

Kate and John Yelland are thankful for the support available to those living with Parkinson

Kate and John Yelland are thankful for the support available to those living with Parkinson's.


There is plenty going on at the Parkinson’s UK Torridge branch to support sufferers and carers.

IMAGINE someone else was in control of your movements, your voice, and relying on up to 30 tablets a day just to get through the next few hours – that is the reality for the thousands who have to live with Parkinson’s.

The Torridge branch of Parkinson’s UK took the opportunity during national Parkinson’s Awareness Week earlier this month to let more people know about the degenerative neurological condition and the help available.

Parkinson’s affects 127,000 in the UK and there is no cure. The symptoms are tremors, slowness of movement and rigidity, which worsen over time.

Former Putford Primary School headmaster John Yelland is 67, but was diagnosed with the condition when he was 54. He noticed his writing was becoming smaller and began experiencing pain when writing.

Now his right side is affected and he is forced to do many everyday actions frustratingly slowly, but John and his wife Kate, who live in Shebbear, have found huge benefit from the support available locally.

“At first I was like many people, in denial, and didn’t want to have anything to do with anybody or anything connected with the disease, but now I go to quite a few events and they are very supportive,” he said.

“I’d like to say what superb support there is for people with Parkinson’s now. I see a specialist every six months, there is a super Parkinson’s nurse at NDDH who is there whenever you need her, plus all the support groups in the area.”

Kate added: “It’s quite devastating once a family member has got it, but the support is out there. You can feel very much on your own once your partner has been diagnosed – you really do need to talk to somebody because you don’t know what to expect.

“The thing about Parkinson’s is not to become isolated; you have to keep up a social life.”

The Torridge branch runs social events and a monthly coffee morning as well as a carer’s group, plus a variety of therapy courses can be accessed and a weekly keep fit group is held at Weare Giffard Village Hall.

* For more information and to find out about the support and friendship offered by Parkinson’s UK Torridge Branch, as well as how you can help, make a donation or speak with volunteers – call Julie Jones on 01237 478128 or Anne Ward on 01288 331475.

There is also a Parkinson’s UK Barnstaple Branch - Jennie or Bob Bliss can be contacted on 01271 814159.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other North Devon Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by North Devon Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique North Devon Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

John Balls with Clovelly caught lobsters.

Lobster fisherman has reached a landmark in his bid to help conservation at Clovelly

Read more
Is the row over dogs back at Instow beach?

Parish Council meeting on Thursday, October 15 to review the situation

Read more
Residents protest against the plans at the site in March. Picture: Jim Bell

Benefits outweigh the harm, says Government inspector

Read more
Get your chickens an Eglu and help raise money for the British Hen Welfare Trust today (Friday).

Support for British Hen Welfare Trust from the Omlet Eglu

Read more
Police are trying to track the car in this picture

The owner of a blue Nissan Almeira could have vital information on collision that killed Natalie Jones, say police

Read more

September saw a 4.9 per cent increase in crime in Barnstaple on the same period last year.

Read more
Portmore's Colin and Mandy Webber presented the cheque to representatives of the club's chosen charities

Five local charities are to benefit from another year of fundraising at Portmore Golf Club.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:17

Fire called out to help in the early hours of Thursday morning

Read more
Yesterday, 13:20
A busy Woolacombe Bay. North Devon has seen a welcome late summer boost in tourism this year

Tourism sectors across the region are reaping the benefits as a result of the late summer sunshine.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:06
Giant veg grower David Maund picked up a number of placings at the Malvern Autumn Show

A giant-vegetable grower from Bideford has returned from a national competition with a prize haul almost as big as some of his extraordinary exhibits.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications