Taunton-based charity Somerset Sight

Blind and partially sighted people living in Somerset are finding their voices, thanks to a unique opportunity provided by Taunton-based charity Somerset Sight.

The charity, which was established in 1919, provides support to more than 3,000 people living in Somerset who are partially sighted or blind. It organises meetings and events, including a fortnightly choir practice. Every choir member is either blind or visually impaired, including the accompanist, pianist Chris Ball.

Charity CEO Jackie Sopwith says that taking part in opportunities such as the choir, prove to those with visual impairments that there is life after sight loss.

She said: “Somerset Sight supports thousands of people across the county, regardless of their level of sight loss. Providing opportunities such as this choir is all part of proving to them that they can still take part in opportunities and learn many new skills without relying on sight.”

The choir is gearing up for its first ever performance, a short concert which is due to take place later this year and will raise vital funds for Somerset Sight. The charity relies on donations, grant funding and more than 300 volunteers across the county, to help deliver its work.

Choir member ****** says that since losing almost all of his sight ** years ago, opportunities such as the choir are vital to him.

He added: “I would never have joined a choir before losing my sight, but it’s become something that I take part in and really enjoy. It’s a great chance to catch up with others just like me, and to have a go at doing something a bit different.”

Somerset Sight offers a variety of activities, outings, and classes, including the fortnightly choir practice. It also runs a mobile advisory service which visits towns and villages across the county to provide support to those unable to travel to the headquarters in Taunton.

To find out more about Somerset Sight