Your Page Title


About us

Front of the Bradbury Centre
a lady with a guide dog being greeted at the Bradbury Centre

Who we are

Sight Concern Worcestershire is a leading charitable organisation dedicated to supporting peopleliving with sight loss across the county. Established in [year], we have been committed to enhancing the lives of visually impaired people and their families by providing invaluable services, support, and resources.

At the heart of our mission is the belief that every person, regardless of their level of sight, deserves the opportunity to live a fulfilling and independent life. We strive to empower peoplewith visual impairments to overcome challenges and embrace their capabilities through a range of tailored services and initiatives.

We are an entirely independent charity and have to raise all of our own funds to be able to provide our range of services.

Our history

Previously lnown as Worcestershire Association for the Blind, earlier society raised its income from churches in the Diocese and the committee was almost entirely formed of clergymen.

They employed a Visitor, whose task it was to locate blind people in the area (of which there were 415 in the 1881 census), they taught them embossed type, and gave them instruction in the scriptures.

After the First World War the name was changed to Worcestershire Association for the Blind and we played our part in helping to rehabilitate men who had lost their sight through exposure to gas.

The entrance to the Bradbury Centre. A sign above the door reads "WEorcestershire Association for the Blind".
The Bradbury Centre circa 2005

We were officially registered as charity number 202144, in 1930. The charity evolved from 1930 to 1986 by forming branch committees, all made up of volunteers, who visited people, organised social activities and provided gifts and grants for blind people in their local area.

During this time the Malvern Talking Newspaper was also established, many do not realise that this is part of Sight Concern, it is run entirely by volunteers and it is still going strong today. 1986 was a significant year for the charity; the first premises were bought. A first-floor flat at 13 Wylds Lane, above the premises owned by the Worcester Talking Newspaper. In 1987 two Social Workers and a Rehabilitation Officer from Worcester invited some younger visually impaired people into this Centre for two half days per week – one for skills training and on for social events.

In 1988 funding was obtained for a Resource Centre Manager – at first the only employee. The next 14 years saw an ever-increasing demand for services; there were over 70 people coming into the Centre on a regular basis for activities such as Braille, word processing, typing, cookery, crafts and woodwork. There were about 30 volunteers who gave their time willingly to help at the Centre. In 1996 the Home Visiting Scheme was set up to provide much needed support and friendship to people who could not come to the Centre. This more than proved its worth, with both numbers of people being visited and volunteers increasing as a result.


The Bradbury Centre's "Lounge", comfy chairs around the edge of a large room.
"The Lounge" as it used to be
The Woodwork room Bradbury CEntre, various peice of woodwork equipment and tools on tables.the bradbr
The old Woodwork Room

By 2001 we had outgrown Wylds Lane and a successful fundraising campaign saw the purchase of the Bradbury Centre, the much larger premises we own today. Larger premises meant more activities and of course more volunteers. In 2014, like many charities we were hit by the cuts and we lost our funding from the Council. After a lot of consultation, we realised that people from across Worcestershire were struggling to get into the centre due to issues with transport and some people were missing out on support as a result. We needed to go back to our roots and take our services back out into the districts of Worcestershire

We were delighted when, in 2016, we obtained National Lottery funding to help us achieve this. Our LocalEyes project has been incredibly successful, we have reached a lot more people through our information line and having six district-based Advice and Support Officers, but we couldn’t have done it without the support of volunteers; some answer phone calls, others help at our peer support groups. We are approaching another period of change as we prepare for the end of this grant funding in July 2019, we are committed to continuing with our model of district-based support but we will need to work extra hard to secure funds in what is an ever increasingly challenging and competitive fundraising environment.

However, challenges have not stopped us in the past and we have continued to grow and developed the charity. With the advances in digital technology we know there are some incredible opportunities ahead and we plan to embrace these and help people with sight loss take advantage of the independence that this can bring them. Much has changed during the years that the charity has existed but the one thing that has remained consistent throughout is the dedication of our team of staff and volunteers, working together to achieve our mission to support blind and partially sighted people to lead independent and fulfilling lives.

Our Patron

Patron Rebecca Redfern fiving into a swimming pool
Rebecca and other swimmers

Rebecca Redfern, World Champion GB Para Swimmer and Silver Olympic Medalist.

Rebecca’s  involvement helps us raise the profile of the charity so that we can reach out to more people struggling unnecessarily with sight loss and provide them with tailored support to lead independent and fulfilling lives. She is a British visually impaired para-swimmer from Droitwich who competes in S13/SB13/SM13 disability categories.

She has held British, European and World records in SB13 100m breaststroke. Rebecca is a shining example of the incredible things that people with sight loss can achieve and a great role model. In 2020 she had a baby boy, Patrick, but this did not deter her from training for the Tokyo Paralympics.  Nor did the impact of Covid 19, Rebecca managed to obtain a swim spa for her garden and continued her training there!

A huge congratulations from everyone here at Sight Concern Worcestershire to Rebecca who won Silver in the Women’s SB13 100m Breast Stroke in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. A massive achievement by anyone’s standards! There is also lots more information on her Wikipedia page, which is written by a member of her family, to read this please click the following link