Home is where my dog is – Bryan Rigg

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I have been totally blind since 1985 and Ginny, my fifth guide dog, who I got in March 2016, was 10 years old on Boxing Day 2023. In the normal run of things she should have retired then. However, due to the restrictions in Guide Dogs for the Blind’s breeding programme caused by Covid, there is a 2-year waiting list for replacement dogs and as we have been told she and I are still working well together, she will continue to work for another 12 months. As I will be 92 by then I am hoping that the association will be able to provide me with a “plodder”.

Ginny gives me the independence and freedom to go anywhere at any time without having to ask my wife or anybody else. She is much loved by Owners and our marvellous staff alike and no doubt her successor will get the same admiration. I was very touched to receive a birthday card for Ginny’s 10th birthday, painted by my neighbour Val Rogerson. As well as being my eyes when going for walks and shopping, she provides therapy to others, especially those here who have had pet dogs in the past.

Earlier in my life I was a member of the local fundraising branch of ‘Guide Dogs’ and was an official speaker for them, giving some 325 talks at schools, ladies organisations, rotary clubs and many more. In 2004 I was honoured to meet the late Queen in Buckingham Palace in recognition of my voluntary work. The Queen shook hands with me and more importantly stroked my guide dog Iain.

On my daily walks I often meet people to whom I have given talks to. One lady recently told me that she has a photograph of me on her bedroom wall! Fortunately, she went on to say it was taken of her son when he was a boy scout, who had met me and my guide dog over 30 years ago. Thank goodness for that!

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I have been totally blind since 1985 and Ginny, my fifth guide dog, who I got in March 2016, was 10 years old on Boxing Day 2023. In the normal run of things she should have retired then. However, due to the restrictions in Guide Dogs for the Blind’s breeding programme caused by Covid, there is a 2-year waiting list for replacement dogs and as we have been told she and I are still working well together, she will continue to work for another 12 months. As I will be 92 by then I am hoping that the association will be able to provide me with a “plodder”.

Ginny gives me the independence and freedom to go anywhere at any time without having to ask my wife or anybody else. She is much loved by Owners and our marvellous staff alike and no doubt her successor will get the same admiration. I was very touched to receive a birthday card for Ginny’s 10th birthday, painted by my neighbour Val Rogerson. As well as being my eyes when going for walks and shopping, she provides therapy to others, especially those here who have had pet dogs in the past.

Earlier in my life I was a member of the local fundraising branch of ‘Guide Dogs’ and was an official speaker for them, giving some 325 talks at schools, ladies organisations, rotary clubs and many more. In 2004 I was honoured to meet the late Queen in Buckingham Palace in recognition of my voluntary work. The Queen shook hands with me and more importantly stroked my guide dog Iain.

On my daily walks I often meet people to whom I have given talks to. One lady recently told me that she has a photograph of me on her bedroom wall! Fortunately, she went on to say it was taken of her son when he was a boy scout, who had met me and my guide dog over 30 years ago. Thank goodness for that!

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Read your latest Court Circular

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- for a healthy and happy lifestyle

So you’ve decided where you’re going to live. You’ve taken care of your finances. But one thing you may not have planned for is the free time on your hands. Here’s a snippet of the wellness activities that help you to thrive in your new environment: