Health Walkers are walking fine!

Health Walkers are walking fine!

A happy group of walkers gathered just before Christmas for the ActivLives Health Walk in Christchurch Park, Ipswich. The next walk is scheduled for Monday 10 January, meeting inside the Soane Street gate, just in front of the Mansion. New walkers are always welcome. More details can be found on the Calendar.

ActivLives Inclusive Badminton tournament hailed as a success

ActivLives Inclusive Badminton tournament hailed as a success

ActivLives held their first Inclusive Badminton Tournament since the pandemic, recently in Ipswich. The tournament was a great success with 18 players competing in the Singles competition. Then all of the players combined to form two teams to contest the Team Relay – first team to 54 points!

“All of the competitors were really glad to be back, it has been nearly two years since any of our players have had an opportunity to compete”, said Mike McCarthy, ActivSport Development Officer. “The standard of play, and more importantly, the determination of the players to enjoy the moment, was a real joy to watch”.

Julie Stokes, ActivLives CEO said, “It was great to see our Inclusive Badminton players competing again. The quality of the rallies was exceptional and the scoring was really close, there was a real buzz of excitement throughout the day”.

Many thanks to all of the great volunteers who made it happen, and to all of the partner organisations who support ActivLives in promoting Inclusive Badminton in the Ipswich area including, Special Olympics Suffolk, Suffolk Community Foundation, Active Suffolk, Suffolk County Council and our hosts, Ipswich Borough Council.


ActivLives Lunch Club at St Mary at Stoke Church

ActivLives Lunch Club at St Mary at Stoke Church

The ActivLives Lunch Club was established in November 2008 and was one of the first Hubs to be developed in Ipswich as part of the One Ipswich – Town & Bridge Project, which later became the charity ActivLives in 2012. The Lunch Club was initially funded through the Fit as a Fiddle initiative (National Lottery / Age UK).

The partnership that has grown over the years between ActivLives and St Mary at Stoke Church, wouldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been for the support of Reverend Ian Morgan and Anita Bimpson. The Lunch Club started in a small way, but soon started to grow and now caters for up to 30 older people each week. Julie Stokes, ActivLives CEO secured funding from IBC Area Committee to refurbish the kitchen, to enable meals to be cooked on site and to improve the facilities for the Church and other organisations that use the Church Hall.

Anita is still involved with the Lunch Club, she remains the link with the Church and is also a key volunteer with ActivLives and along with the fantastic team of volunteers, run the lunch club and support the other ActivLives activities that take place on a Tuesday in the Church Hall. Other members of the Church help on a rota with washing up, new members always welcome.

What is ActivLives?

ActivLives is a local charity delivering a wide range of activities and projects in Ipswich and East Suffolk for people of all ages to get involved in, such as Community Gardening, ActivSheds, Community Singing, Inclusive Sport, seated and standing falls prevention exercise, health walks and stimulating activities for people living with Dementia, Carers and former carers.

ActivLives activities bring people together; they are accessible and help people keep active, healthy and connected with their community, reducing social isolation and loneliness, improving health and well-being and providing opportunities to learn new skills, volunteer and gain meaningful employment.

ActivLives supports people with long-term health conditions, both physical and mental, people with Intellectual Disability, people with a disability, younger people and adults at risk. We mainly work in areas of deprivation, including urban and rural areas and we work with a diverse range of people, from different communities, ethnicity, faith and religion.

What activities are available on a Tuesday?

10.30am – 11.30am – Better Balance Session – £5.00 per session

If you need help to improve your mobility, strength, co-ordination and balance or you have experienced a fall/s and have lost your confidence then our Better Balance session is for you. The fun seated and standing exercise will help you to remain independent and able to carry out daily living tasks, as well as building your confidence and reduce the risk of falls and fractures. For more information about joining this session please contact: Clare Macdonald Step by Step Development Officer – 01473 345350

12 noon – 1.15pm – Lunch Club – £5.00 for Lunch & refreshments

Perhaps you are new to the area, have lost a partner, are you lonely and want to meet people and make new friends, then come and join us for lunch. It’s great value for money and very tasty with it. The hot two course meal is homemade by our cook and all dietary requirements can be catered for. If you would like to attend the Lunch Club please contact Julie Stokes CEO – 01473 345350 or pop in and speak to the volunteers.

1.45pm – 3.45pm – ActivSingers Group – £5.00 per session (2 & 4 Tuesday of the month)

Do you like singing, but don’t want to join a choir, then ActivSingers is for you. Come and sing a wide range of songs including natural voice songs, rounds, popular songs, songs from the shows and your favourites. The session is very relaxed, welcoming and fun and during the break you can have a chat and make new friends. If you would like to join us for lunch before the session, just let the volunteers know who will book you a place.

If you would like more information about how to join the ActivSingers group contact Julie Stokes CEO – 01473 345350

Volunteering – ActivLives is always looking for volunteers to help with our activities, Community Gardens, Health Walks or in our main office.

To find out more about what other activities are available and how to volunteer please visit the ActivLives website – or contact us on 01473 345350

To find out more about St Mary at Stoke Church Hall please visit


A group of 8 better balance sessions attendees sit in a circle on chairs, they roll a green ball under their left foot. The follow the instructions from the class instructor.
5 people take part in a better balance session, they sit on chairs and raise their arms towards the ceiling.
ActivLives lunch club. People sit at several tables dotted around the room, all are eating their lunch and having a chat.
Activ Lives lunch club. People stand at a table and serve food to the people who have come along to lunch club..

The ActivLives Badminton Tournament

The ActivLives Badminton Tournament

The ActivLives Inclusive Badminton Tournament is being held in Ipswich on Saturday 20 November.

This tournament is targeted at our own local players who play regularly with ActivLives – many of the competitors also compete in Special Olympics competitions.

This will be a Singles tournament consisting of round-robin group games. All of the competitors will be ‘divisioned’ based upon their playing abilities, with a system of ‘head starts’ also being used to try to ensure that there are plenty of close games. It is planned to round the event off with a Team Relay, making use of a novel format used at a recent Youth Olympics. Prior entry for the competitors will be required.

All of the umpires and scorers for this event will be volunteers – thank you in advance to all of them!

The event will be delivered by ActivLives, with the support of Special Olympics Suffolk.

Pre-entry is required – contact for more details, or call ActivLives on 01473 345350. Covid-19 measures (Hands-Face-Space-Fresh Air), will be in place at this event.

Supporting World Mental Health Day

Supporting World Mental Health Day

ActivLives supports World Mental Health Day. Sunday 10 October is the day that we are being asked to support the campaign to help raise awareness of the importance of mental health, for all of us.

One of the initiatives this year is the ‘Big Mental Health Get Together’. The Big Mental Health Get Together is all about creating a supportive environment for people to reconnect and to talk about mental health if they want to. ActivLives strives to promote positive mental health in a number of ways including: hosting a wide variety of positive physical and social activity sessions in supportive environments, providing mental health awareness support and training to our staff and volunteers, working closely with local mental health providers, supporting local and national mental health campaigns.

Find out more about World Mental Health Day at World Mental Health Day 2021 – Mental Health UK (