Our Ambition

1. Our Ambition

  • We want to help people to help themselves by promoting well-being and self-reliance at all stages of their lives.
  • We want to support vulnerable people to be safe, in control, and to make choices about how they want to live.
  • We want to support communities to be strong, healthy, safe and resilient.
  • We want to ensure that people in Buckinghamshire are supported in the best way and given the right support at the right time, while at the same time making sure our services are sustainable for the future.

One of the ways we want to do this is by developing meaningful and appropriate day and employment opportunities in the community to enable people to live fulfilling lives. We want to support a culture of choice for individuals rather than the current culture of dependency and having to fit in to services.

We want to ensure that in the future, people in Buckinghamshire are supported in the best way and given the right support at the right time. At the same time we need to make sure our services represent value for money and are sustainable for the future.

2. Contact Better Lives

Better Lives - Buckinghamshire County Council

Email: fulfillinglives@buckscc.gov.uk


Carers Bucks

Contact name: Sally Hearn

Telephone: 01296 392711

Email: Sally.hearn@carersbucks.org

Website: www.carerbucks.org

Project role: Carers Bucks role through the project is to work with all involved to support parents/family carers as the project progresses and to share the thoughts and perspective of carers to help shape the project.



Contact name: Alex Britton

Telephone: 01494 434448

Email: alex.britton@talkback-uk.com

Website: www.talkback-uk.com

Project role: Talkback will ensure that we support people with a learning disability through the change process and transition of the current Day Opportunities consultation process by creating appropriate safe environments for people to speak up through a range of individual, group and peer support/advocacy. A range of creative approaches will be utilized to support people to express their real views and contribute to change that will affect their lives.


3. Activities and support in Buckinghamshire

Bucks Online Directory (BOD)

Search the Bucks Online Directory (BOD) for activities and support in Buckinghamshire.


Hughenden Gardens Village (HGV)

As part of Better Lives (our new approach to adult social care) we want people to stay as independent as possible. If you or your partner are starting to struggle in your current home a retirement village may be the answer. Hughenden Gardens is an Extra Care retirement village in High Wycombe for people aged 55 years and over. It encourages independent living, but can provide support when it is needed. The council has nomination rights to 75 one and two bedroom apartments on the site. Please view the HGV information leaflet for further information.

4. Case studies

The following case studies show how services might be different in the future

Better Lives:  Case study 1

Mel is a 30 year old lady who attends the centre at Aylesbury 2 days per week. She is physically able and has a mild learning disability.  She spends a lot of her time in the centre helping both staff and clients and enjoys and benefits from a helping role.  Staff from her supported living drop her off and pick her up.

Mel could be supported to undertake a role in the community voluntarily which could lead to paid work. She would learn new skills and her self-esteem would be boosted. Mel would love to use her people skills to volunteer with others that need help for example, in a nursery, hospital, charity shop or a library. She would initially need a Personal Assistant to attend with her, until her confidence develops and support her to get to know her role well. She has the potential to be able to use public transport independently after some travel training. She would need some close supervision if she was to be unsupported in her job role.

Better Lives: Case study 2

Joe is a 19 years old he attends the centre at Buckingham 1 day a week and Thrift 2 days per week. He travels via taxi services. Joe has 2 Personal Assistants that support him in the community. He lives at home with his Mum and Dad. Joe is physically able and has autism/autistic traits with some challenging behaviours. It is a rare to see Joe display these behaviours and this is usually if he’s not stimulated with activities he likes.

Joe is able to access the community and it would be ideal for him to go to activities within the community such as swimming, going to the gym, shopping, and other groups where he is able to socialise such as gaming groups and other sports. With the right support he could maintain a regular position of voluntary work as Joe really enjoys helping others and having a purpose in an environment. This could be in a pet shop, café or type of retail that he could contribute in. He would need support from PA’s to work towards this initially and hopefully through time he could manage independently when in a routine.


Better Lives: Case study 3

Freddie is a 29 year man who is very happy living at home with his mum and dad. Freddie has cerebral palsy, severe learning difficulties and epilepsy.  Freddie uses a moulded (specialist seat) Neo wheelchair and needs to be hoisted to change position. Freddie is doubly incontinent and requires personal care to be carried out by 2 carers (using a hoist and changing bed). Freddie needs one to one support to be able to have a drink and something eat. During the day it is likely that Freddie may have an epileptic seizure, therefore medication must be administered by trained staff. Freddie is non-verbal and he has severe learning difficulties. He is vulnerable and will not recognise when he faces danger from hazardous situations or unscrupulous carers. He will always need to be with carers he recognises and carers who understand his needs.

Attending a building-based service provides a safe environment for Freddie. It is also a place where he can receive regular physiotherapy which enables him to live the healthiest life he is able to do. The physiotherapist is able to monitor Freddie's scoliosis in his spine and signpost any potential health difficulties to his family. Freddie enjoys going into the community with a carer he knows for planned activities and may benefit from planned, increased opportunities in the community whilst retaining a building base to return to.

Freddie loves to be able to have a short break  in a respite unit, supported by trained and caring staff with the opportunity to spend time with his friends. It is also an opportunity for Freddy's family to catch up on sleep, see other family members and to prepare themselves for Freddy's return after his short break. This enables Freddie and his family to remain together in the family home. 

7. Access All Areas 2019

What is Access All Areas?

It is a full day exhibition, advice and demonstration event aimed at people with a learning disability or autism, their families, carers and support workers. But anyone can attend.

The aim of Access All Areas is to help people with learning disabilities or autism access all the areas of support and help available to them.

Who is behind Access All Areas?

The event is organised by the Staying Healthy Workgroup a partnership that includes; Buckinghamshire County Council, Buckinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Buckinghamshire NHS Healthcare Trust, Talkback, Carers Bucks and Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust.

Our supporters

We are very grateful for the support of:

Thames Valley Caner Alliance

Tabbers Green

Possum Ltd



The Waterside Theatre

Aqua Vale

Swan Pool

Who will be there?

We now have a confirmed list of 60 exhibitors and activities for you to enjoy. The full list can be seen here. This list and a map showing where everyone is located will be available for visitors at the event.

Who should attend?

If you (or someone you know) are aged over 14 years, live in Buckinghamshire and have a learning disability or autism - this event is for you.

When and where is it happening?

Access All Areas 2019 takes place at Stoke Mandeville Stadium on Tuesday 22 October 2019.

It opens at 10.30am and closes at 4pm. You can come for a couple of hours or stay the whole day.

Why are you doing this?

People with a learning disability or autism are not accessing the services that could help them live longer, more fulfilled lives. For example registering for a free Annual Health check, cancer screening or finding out about things they can do for themselves - like being more active, keeping hydrated or eating more healthily. On average women with a learning disability live 10 years less the general population, and men 15 years less. We would like to change that.

How do I get a ticket?

The event is FREE to attend but you still need to register with us in advance please. Tickets can be booked online here.

This is also where you will find FAQs about attending the event.

How do I book a stand at Access All Areas?

If you would like to have a stand at Access All Areas, or give a demonstration, contact James by email jtilston@buckscc.gov.uk

James will send you a booking form and explain how things work.

It is FREE to exhibit but we do expect that you provide accessible information or activities - and we really love it when our exhibitors do something fun, hands-on or interactive to get their message across.