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Believe in me- Stafford Gatehouse Theatre, 25 September 2008


Tickets available from the Stafford Gatehouse Theatre from 16 July by phone only to keep them free to you. [ BASW is kindly paying the ticket bill]

Box Office number 01785 254 653

Website for directions


Believe in me is a unique event.

Initiated by a social worker, Rachel Bramble who had observed over two decades the growth in both social work and the media but with no meeting ground and negative outcomes for the public. She decided to gather together a motley group of people to discuss where to go next, bearing in mind the ageing population of the UK.


Central to ‘ Believe in me’ is Phoebe, the seventeen year old daughter of Rachel Bramble who will not only talk about what it’s like to spend your whole life as a social workers’ child, but also be a hostess for the day encouraging members to work positively together.


 ‘Believe in me’ is about action as much as discussion. Rachel believes that there is common ground between the groups and has initiated four action groups to not only find this common ground but work towards positive collaborations for the future.


 Group A is made up of service users and is lead by Professor Peter Beresford, a long time service user himself. They will consider what impact the relationship between social work and the media has had on them and how things could be improved.

What kinds of services would they like from social workers and how they would like to be reported by the media.


Group B is lead by Professor Sue White and John Hemming MP who will consider whether current policies has caused bad social work practice and what can be done about it.


Group C gives Rachel Bramble the initiator of ‘ Believe in me’ the opportunity to launch her model A.E.R.O [ Aspirations, Encouragement, Realism and Openness] which she uses as a social worker in a school in Staffordshire. Joining her will be Professor Mark Doel and David Kidney MP [ Stafford MP] who will consider how the philosophy of A.E.R.O could go beyond school and permeate throughout social work and into the media.


Group D is lead by Professor Keith Popple, media workers and academics. Their brief is to consider why media workers have difficulties reporting and making programmes that involve social workers and why there has never been a TV soap with social workers as the central theme. The aim by the end of the day is to find a way to get that soap on TV.


Believe in me is as much about outcomes as discussion, throughout the day attendees will be encouraged to share not only their experiences but also ideas about how things could be changed for the better. For those who do not like to speak out publicly there will be chances to record their commitment to a better future.


 ‘Believe in me’ is free to attend no refreshments will be provided to keep the event simple. There are plenty of shops and eating places within a few minutes walk from the Gatehouse Theatre, which also has its own café.

The Theatre is a fifteen minutes walk from Railway Station.



Proposed programme


10 am Intros – By Professor Michael Preston Shoot our chair, troubleshooter and host for the day.


10,05am Phoebe talking about her life as the daughter of a social worker


10.20 am Rachel Bramble- The Mouse and the Lion- The relationship between social work and the media and discussion


10.45am break [don’t forget your refreshments or pop across the road to Brambles]


11.15 Action groups choose one of the four


12.45 Lunch – chill and chat [Plenty of food places within a few minutes walk or join the Stafford regulars in the Gatehouse café]


1.45 Action groups – choose a second


3.30 Finale in the main theatre- Outcomes of groups and thoughts for the future


4.15 finish.

A Letter from Ken Loach - Film Director

Dear Rachel,


Thanks for your letter.  I am pleased to support your project and I’m sorry I shall be working and unable to be there in person.  I think the subject you are raising is important but complex.  Increasingly, broadcasters’ principal objective is to increase their share of the audience, regardless of other considerations.  They operate like other industries – flexibility of labour, speed-ups, targeting their product, full of management expertise and jargon.  There are a few thoughtful programmes, but they are made so that the politicians to whom the broadcasters are answerable can agree that the broadcasters are in fact fulfilling their obligation.  It is a collusion which has seen crude market forces diminish a medium that could – and should – reflect, scrutinize and enhance our lives. Some hope!

You’re turning over a stone that will reveal a few nasty surprises.  But understanding the structural problems is a fundamental first step. Good luck!


Yours sincerely

Ken Loach

A Letter to Prince Charles


 I have created this section to record efforts that myself and others have done or are in the process of doing to try to improve things for people whoever they are.

HRH Prince Charles

Highgrove House

Doughton, Tetbury GL8 8TN



Dear Sir

I am writing to you after being encouraged by Edward Bayntun-Coward who I shared a vivid dream with.

This might seem very strange until you put it in context.

My Grandfather was Professor Macgregor Skene who was Professor of Botany and Dean of Science at Bristol and London during the second world war. I knew him very well and in many ways he was my mentor encouraging me to have an enquiring open mind.

I know that he did quite a lot of research but when I approached his department a few years ago it seemed that they had very little at the University which surprised me. I wonder whether its hidden in London.

Going back to the dream which occurred again the next night. Granddad was nagging me “Tell them the answer is in the herbs” This was at the beginning of the Coronavirus epidemic.

I searched through my Grandfather’s books for an answer but couldn’t find anything specific but then found Culpeper. The British Herbal which he had given to his sister next to his books which contains information about  herbs related to breathing difficulties.


I emailed the Melville Professor who I had been in contact with a few years ago to tell him and he said

“While I am not a clinician, I feel I can assure you that Governments, clinicians, scientists and the pharmaceutical / healthcare industries are leaving no stone unturned when it comes to identifying effective ways to treat covid-19 infected patients and to develop an effective vaccine. If there are clues in his published work, I am sure that they will not have gone unnoticed. ……………However, given the tremendous strength of Chinese research in plant-based products it is quite likely that, if your Grandfather found something, that Chinese colleagues would "be onto it" either independently or through following his work.”




I emailed a contact I had in China after I went on a Viking cruise last year and he sent me some research which included


A total of 74,187 confirmed patients, which account for 91.5 percent of the total infections on the Chinese mainland, have been administered traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) as part of their treatment, and over 90 percent of them have shown improvement during clinical observation, according to Yu Yanhong, Party secretary and top official of the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine.


So why don’t we try this or the herbs recommended in Culpeper?


I apologise for my hand written letter but my printer has gone wrong and my partner is in Lockdown with his Mum in Southampton.

I can email you both contacts.

I have used Chinese medicine for a complaint that the NHS were unable to help me with and it improved my life dramatically.


I have tried to get this idea to influential people but like most of the population I am ignored. I hope that you will help to change this in the future as there are lots of people with good ideas who never get heard.


Best wishes


Rachel Jordan


Ps I am copying this by email to Edward Bayntun- Coward

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