Living your Life

Equal Lives is focussed on helping you live your own life and be independent. We have prepared some helpful guides and have listed some useful links below to give you relevant and local information on a variety of subjects. If you’d like to suggest any further topics, why not contact us?

Staying safe and well at home

Healthy Ageing.  Norfolk County Council has developed a toolkit offering practical steps to support more older people and their families and carers to enjoy the best possible quality of life and remain safe and well at home:

Norfolk Community Directory provides Norfolk residents and families with information on services, activities and groups across Norfolk: This is an initiative from Norfolk County Council.  They have included information from all kinds of organisations who help people to keep healthy, be sociable, physically active, mentally active, raise their aspirations for educational achievement, help their community, stay independent, feel included, get involved, improve their well-being, stay safe, find suitable care and support, find help looking after their children, and get family support.

Going Out:

Problems with urgently needing the loo when you go out?

Try the ‘Just Can’t Wait Toilet Card’ available from the Bladder and Bowel Community at  This doesn’t guarantee access to a toilet, but often helps.




  • The Disabled Students’ Helpline at Disability Rights UK provides support and information for disabled students, through an agreement with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (following the closure of the National Bureau for Students with Disabilities).  They can provide advice on education, training and employment.  Telephone 0800 328 5050 (Freephone) on Tuesday 11am-1pm or Thursday 11am-1pm, or email

Leisure Activities:

  • For all sorts of accessible activities for children and young people:  You can search the website and results will be listed according to distance from the club or group to the postcode or town you entered.

Library Service – Equal Access Membership for adults:

If you are supporting someone who has either a mobility or visual impairment, dyslexia, arthritis or learning difficulty were you aware they could benefit from a more flexible library membership? Please see the below details, specifically the section referring to overdue and reservation charges.

This is aimed at customers with mobility and visual impairments, and also customers with dyslexia, arthritis and learning difficulties (who may be limited in the formats suitable for them).

With this membership the following apply;

MAXIMUM LOANS:             54 items, made up from up to:

  • 15 books from each of the groups of collections (Adult/Teen/Junior)
  • 4 Junior Non Fiction
  • 10 Music CDs
  • 6 DVDs
  • 2 BluRays
  • 15 Spoken word
  • 2 Games
  • 2 magazines
  • + 6 eBooks/eAudio from Norfolk Digital Library and 6 titles from Norfolk Digital Audio Library


  • 3 weeks – books, spoken word, general DVD, short language courses (LAN), ebooks
  • 6 weeks – playsets
  • 12 weeks – longer language courses (SETLAN)
  • 1 week – homework collection, video games, recorded music, BluRay & DVD except
  • 2 days – DVD/BluRay top titles

RENEWALS – All renewable except music sets, SETLAN, recorded music, BluRay & DVD, and homework collection items. Inter Library Loans may not be renewable

LOAN CHARGES – None, apart from BluRays, DVDs and video games, (general interest DVDs are exempt charge).

OVERDUE CHARGES – No charge, except for BluRays, DVDs and video games

RESERVATIONS  CHARGES – None, apart from Inter Library Loan charges”

If someone you are working with is interested in applying for this type of membership, please ask them to discuss this with staff at their local library.

Another feature which may be of interest, is the pre overdue notification service.  “Sign up to our pre-overdue notification service and we’ll send you an email reminder three days before your items are due back.  You can set this up in the personal details section of your online account. (If you’ve already signed up and aren’t getting your notifications, check your spam or junk folders.)”

Parking Options:

If you need to park in an unfamiliar area it can be stressful and time consuming to find a space near your desired destination.

I thought it might be useful to highlight the different district council web pages to check the parking options available for blue badge holders and parking in general. Some of the pages also advise about where there is free parking.

Breckland council

Norwich city council search under “my neighbourhood” for parking options near your destination (only works with postcodes within Norwich city boundaries)

Broadland council

South Norfolk council

North Norfolk council

West Norfolk and King’s Lynn council

Great Yarmouth council

“Whilst all of the town centre Borough Council car parks are free from 4pm, a number of town centre retailers are offering a discount to their customers to cover the cost of an hours parking as part of the “First Hour Free” initiative.

Use any of the Great Yarmouth Borough Council town centre car parks and spend £10 or more in one transaction at participating retailers to get the equivalent cost of 1 hours parking discounted off your purchase*

“First Hour Free” participating retailers:

  • Boots – Market Gates
  • Palmers Department Store – Market Place
  • Ponden Home – Market Place
  • Made with Love Beads and Craft Supplies – Victoria Arcade
  • Coleman Opticians – Regent Street
  • Arcade Florist – Victoria Arcade
  • Specsavers – Market Place
  • Greggs – King Street
  • Edinburgh Woolen Mill – Market Place
  • Garlands – Market Row
  • Judith Fisher at Brahams – Market Row
  • Hair Chair – Market Row
  • Cox & Son Jewellers – Northgate Street
  • Urban Oasis – Market Gates Road
  • Normans – Market Place
  • Bubblegum Boutique – Victoria Arcade
  • Cox & Son Jewellers – Market Row
  • IJustWanna…Candy – Market Gates shopping centre
  • Psychic Corner – Victoria Arcade
  • Instant Furniture – Market Row
  • Ultimate Glitz – Victoria Arcade
  • S & L Dearn Fruit and Veg stall – Yarmouth Market

*Discount worth £1 against a minimum single transaction of £10 on redemption of voucher supplied with pay and display parking ticket. Voucher valid on day of issue only and can be used only once at retailers displaying the “First Hour Free” poster.

How to claim your “First Hour Free” discount

When paying for your parking up at any of the town centre car parks operated by Great Yarmouth Borough Council a 2nd ticket will be provided by the machine in addition to the normal pay and display ticket. Take this 2nd ticket with you when you visit any of the shops participating in the “First Hour Free” scheme. These are listed above and will be displaying a poster indicating that they are part of the “First Hour Free” initiative. When making your purchase of £10 or more remember to hand the 2nd ticket to the sales assistant to claim your discount. The assistant will retain this ticket and discount your purchase by £1 which is the cost of one hours town centre parking – your “First Hour Free”.



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