Outlook News

New blood required!

We need your blood! – Lisburn Outlook needs new blood.  Well, really it’s your brains and your time.  Most of your current committee have been working away steadily for Lisburn Outlook for a number of years.  They cannot be expected to go on indefinitely. Even if they could, it would not be good for the charity, as they would become jaded and lose their energy.

So we need new people to step forward and help run your charity.  In particular, people who are ready to enhance our social media presence or to organise events during the coming year.

We are a good team, and we all give one another support, so you would not be alone.  So come on, please give serious consideration to joining the committee or offering to take on a project or event.  The more people who do this, the brighter the outlook for Outlook.

Please contact David at lisburnoutlook@gmail.com.

Two Fund-Raising Successes

What was Belfast’s Royal Avenue called before it became Royal Avenue? Which street in Lisburn is named after a military musician who met an untimely end? If you had been at our quiz, you would know the answers to these questions!

There were 100 questions, 100 answers, and £695 in Outlook’s account afterwards. Our quiz at Lisburn Racquets Club on 4th November attracted around 70 people and brought in over £700. Even after paying catering expenses we netted £695.10. A huge thank you to Claire Patience for making all the arrangements, as well as to everyone who helped her. Also to George and Michael, the inimitable quizmasters.

Our funds are also better off to the tune of £180 as the result of a coffee morning organised in October by Deborah Maginness at the Housing Executive, where she works.   Colleagues sampled coffee and (apparently) very yummy cakes and tray bakes donated by staff. Thank you to all concerned.

Pedal Power Gears up our Funds

On Friday 13th October members and friends of Lisburn Outlook raised a massive £1,343 at Tesco’s in Bentrim street. We had two static tandems which many of us pedalled throughout the day with great vigour, even though we didn’t move! Others stood with buckets while a pop-up stand proclaimed who we are and what we do.

Thanks to Tesco’s for allowing us to do this, thanks to everyone who turned up to help, and above all thanks to Paul Rodgers who co-ordinated it all.

RNIB Northern Ireland Network Committee

RNIB are  seeking new members for our Northern Ireland Network Committee!  As a member you will help lead and shape our work in the local community to bring about positive change for blind and partially sighted people of all ages and anyone affected by sight loss.

RNIB are especially looking for people who 

*        Want to make a contribution, using their experience or knowledge of the issues faced by people with sight loss, to bring about change

*        Are committed to representing the best interests of blind and partially sighted people across Northern Ireland 

*        Are able to give one day a month to Network Committee activities, including a minimum of four meetings each year

Please share with anyone you think may be interested in this opportunity. The closing date for applications is Monday 6 November 2017.   For further information on this exciting opportunity please email Jackie Witherow on:


or call on 02890 329373.  

Fundraising at Tesco’s

Lisburn Outlook members and supporters had a great day on Friday 13th October raising funds outside Tesco’s on Bentrim Street/Prince William Road.  Despite some damp weather we raised over £1300 for our charity.  Many thanks to all who supported us on the day but particular thanks are due to Paul Rodgers who played a key role in organising this event.


Blue Grass in Omagh

Fourteen Lisburn Outlook members had a great day on 3rd September at the Ulster American Folk Park near Omagh.  We visited several of the houses, following the rags to riches story of Ulster people who had emigrated to North America in the 18th and 19th centuries.  We were also able to enjoy a variety of country and blue grass music as we wandered around.  The rain largely held off, and who cares about a drop of rain anyway!

Castlewellan Outing

A number of our cyclists enjoyed a day out at Castlewellan on 23rd August, cycling around the lake and enjoying the barbecue lunch and musical entertainment provided.  Many thanks to Doreen and her volunteers in Lurgan for organising the event and the sunny weather, and thanks also to our own pilots, especially Hamilton for taking charge of the tandem trailer.

Jane Eyre

Fourteen members of Lisburn Outlook had a very enjoyable afternoon attending an audio described performance of Jane Eyre at the Grand Opera House on 26th August.  It took much less time than reading the novel!  And we can reveal that she got her man in the end!

RNIB Phone Helpline

RNIB has a phone helpline that can be used to get lots of information and support for blind and partially sighted people and for friends and family interested in understanding sight loss better.

The phone number is 02034321488 then you follow the instructions for whatever you are interested in finding out about:

For information put together by people who have experienced losing their sight – press1

To understand sight loss – press 2

To join RNIB Connect – press 3 (then 3 for Connect magazines and 4 for the NI ‘Craic on’ podcasts)

To listen to a selection of RNIB produced magazines and leaflets – press 4

For organisations that can help you – press 5

RNIB would welcome you sharing the information with as many people as possible using whatever medium you prefer.

Please note that this initiative gives you access to recorded material.  It has not replaced the existing RNIB Helpline, 0303 123 9999, which you should still use for more straightforward transactions such as ordering equipment, talking books or magazine subscriptions, and if you want to seek advice through a direct conversation

Lisburn Outlook Barbecue

A big thank you to the Irvine Family and everyone else who worked so hard to make the Lisburn Outlook barbecue on 29th July such an enjoyable event.  The occasional rain did not deter us!

Could this become an annual event? 

Did you know?

If you buy a book of stamps, how do you know if they are first or second class, and how do you know if they are the right way up?

If the book is lying with the stamps the right way up, the bottom sheet sticks out slightly further to the right than the cover.  With the book in this position, you will find either one or two nicks cut into the lower sheet, near the top.  One nick means first class, two nicks means second class.


Gran Fondo – A Great Success!

Five tandems from Lisburn Outlook took part in the recent Gran Fondo which took place on Sunday 4th June.  The tandems and accompanying single bike were very popular with the crowds who turned out to watch the event and the media too took a great interest with interviews recorded by both the Belfast Telegraph and BBC.

New pictures added (26 June) – see the photo page of this site.

Link to Belfast Telegraph interview:


A Great Night at the Theatre

Lisburn Outlook members had a great night at the Lyric theatre on Thursday, 1st June, where they attended an audio described performance of “Sinners”.

Our thanks go to Margaret Mann who organised this event.

Rally Driving Experience

Members of Lisburn Outlook enjoyed a great day of driving at the All Trak Centre in Craigavon on 6th May.  Everyone had their turn behind the wheel with some very impressive lap times recorded…and no bumps or dents.

Members of Lisburn Outlook at Alltrak Rallysport

Our thanks to Claire Patience who organised this event and to the staff at All Trak who looked after us very well.


Online Today – Technology Clinics

Online Today’ technology advice clinics are for people with sight loss in Northern Ireland. The online today team have found that technology can make everyone’s lives easier, but knowing where to start isn’t always easy. 

Online Today technology clinics are an opportunity for anyone to get answers to your quick tech queries over the phone or face to face. 

Do your settings need adjusted? Having issues with your apps, or forgotten how to do something? Call us, or call in, and we’ll get you going again.

The clinics will operate on a ‘first come first served’ basis, with slots lasting up to a maximum of 15 minutes per person. 

Derry/Londonderry – last Friday of every month                          Telephone Session – 10.00am-12.00noon                                                Call 075 2590 9872 – If number is busy leave a voicemail and someone will call you back as soon as possible.

Drop in Session – 1.00pm -3.30pm                                                  Location: RNIB Londonderry/Derry, Embassy Building, Strand Road, Londonderry/Derry, BT48 7BH

Belfast – Last Friday of every month  
Telephone Session – 10.00am-12.00noon                                                Call 028 9033 4126 – If number is busy leave a voicemail and someone will call you back as soon as possible.

Drop in Session – 1.00pm-3.30pm
Location: RNIB Belfast, Victoria House, 15-15 Gloucester St, Belfast, BT1 4LS.
For more information contact Joanne Wilson, Project Co-ordinator Online Today, RNIB NI on 028 9033 4113 or email onlinetodayni@rnib.org.uk


 New Twitter Account

Lisburn Outlook is now alive and active on Twitter!  Why not follow us at @Lisburn_Outlook, for the latest updates on what is happening.  This will also give you another way of helping us spread the word about Lisburn Outlook, and another way of getting in touch.

Keeping in touch

Our Secretary David Mann has set up a group texting facility on his phone. If you have not been receiving texts lately, it may be that we have not got a mobile number for you. David would love to have it. We also try to send out email reminders, but again only if we have an email address for you. David will happily receive any contact information. He can contacted on 07766 302496 or at lisburnoutlook@gmail.com.

Our data protection policy ensures that information of this nature will not be disclosed to anyone not entitled to use it for the purposes of Lisburn Outlook.


Donations Received

We are extremely grateful to all those who make donations to support our activities.  In particular, we gratefully acknowledge support from:

  • The Dean of Belfast Appeal
  • Lisburn Probus
  • Edenmore Golf Club and
  • Paul McCambridge Photography

We also very much appreciate the financial support from Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council’s Sport Development Team for our It Takes 2 to Tandem event in August 2016.


Facebook Pages for Visually Impaired People

One of RNIB Connect volunteers has created a number of Facebook pages with the aim of helping to connect visually impaired people, and their friends & family, at a local level with one another to help grow friendships and networks.  If anyone has an interesting article or video to share, a story to tell, an event to publicise or know of services other visually impaired people should know about then please join, share &
like the community.  There are pages for each county in Northern Ireland and details are as follows:
L’Derry / Derry      <https://www.facebook.com/groups/212632139211901/>Armagh
<https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=tyroneVisually%20Impaired%20Persons%20Social%20Group%20Page&gt;This is not actually an RNIB Connect initiative, but is very much in the same spirit.


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