Twilight Sessions : Better Start Learning Sessions

Book Your Place Today!

Book Your Place Today!

Bickerstaffe House, Talbot Road, Blackpool

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    • On the last Monday of every month, Better Start is delivering an exciting series of Twilight Training Sessions (from 4-5pm) at Bickerstaffe House. These afternoon sessions are aimed at providing Early Years Workforce colleagues with an insight into Better Start programmes and priority issues. Sessions topics include: Maternal & Infant Mental Health, Early Literacy, Oral Health, Diet During Pregnancy, Parks & Open Spaces and more. See the list below for dates and session topics!

      To book a place on one of these sessions, please email, providing your name and the date of the sessions you would like to attend. 

      Better Start Twilight Session Details:

      Monday 28th November 2016 - How is Better Start going to be evaluated?  A national and local perspective

      The Evaluation Team from the Centre for Early Child Development will define evaluation and why it is important to collect data and evidence the impact Better Start is having on the Blackpool community. The talk will give a brief overview of the National Better Start evaluation being conducted by Warwick Consortium. They will run a workshop and provide resources to help practitioners include monitoring and evaluation in their work to add to the evidence base and show the impact they have in the local area.

      Monday 19th December 2016Oral Health

      Dr Rachel Tyrrell-Smith, Evaluation Officer at the Centre for Early Child Development and Donna Taylor, Lead Nurse/Public Health Practitioner will provide an overview and update of their plans for improving the oral health of young children in Blackpool.  The plan aims to help families put into action the three key behaviours linked to good oral health in children: (1) healthy balanced diet with reduced sugar intake; (2) good oral hygiene; and (3) regular visits to the dentist. 

      Monday 30th January 2017

      ‘Promoting a Healthy Diet during Pregnancy and the Early Years’

      Dr Helen Crawley Synopsis  talks about why eating well matters to everyone, and it is well established that poor diet across the lifespan is related to poorer health outcomes and life chances. Nutrition advice is never far from the news, but knowing where to look for independent, evidence based information is essential in order to offer consistent advice to families. Adverse diet related health outcomes for mothers and their children are more common in deprived and vulnerable groups, and increasingly the first 1000 days of life are recognised as a crucial period for intervention if we are to reduce health inequalities. This talk will highlight key areas of public health nutrition policy in pregnancy and the early years and look at how health workers can support families to make simple, cost-effective changes to the food choices they make.

      Monday 27th February 2017 - Early Literacy and Speech, Language and Communication

      Sarah Lambert, Development Manager (Early Years) at the Centre for Early Child Development will provide an overview and update on the early literacy and speech, language and communication work within the Better Start initiative.  Blackpool has recently undertaken a full review of the speech, language and communication service and the outcomes from this will be shared.

      Monday 27th March 2017Alcohol in pregnancy

      Dr Amrit Caleyachetty, Senior Evaluation Officer at the Centre of Early Child Development will provide an overview  about the prevention of alcohol-exposed pregnancies research study, and an update on how the findings are being used to inform local action.

      Monday 24th April 2017 - Parks and open spaces development

      Sharon Mather (Development Manager – Community Development) and Sarah Gorst (Community Engagement Officer) both from the Centre for Early Child Development will put into context the Better Start Parks & Open Spaces Programme, the purpose of the programme, the budget available and the outcomes achieved to date, the connections achieved within the delivery of the programme and the vision within Better Start and beyond.

      Monday 26th June 2017 - Targeted programmes

      Clare Law (Development Manager - Targeted Programmes)  and Martin Murphy (interim NSPCC Service Centre Manager), have been developing a number of targeted programmes for families in Blackpool.  Parents Under Pressure, Video Interaction Guidance and SafeCare have been delivered in Blackpool by the NSPCC since June 2016. This session will include an update on the services, the sharing of some local case studies and also provide details of the evaluation and research to date.

      Monday 31st July 2017 - Maternal and Infant Mental Health – a Blackpool Project

      Deborah O’Dea (Development Manager - Health) will provide an overview of what PMH and IMH is and discuss what the local status is and maternal and infant mental health data from the local area (preferably in the 7 BS wards) and compare with national figures.

      It will briefly look at the application of new information and research about maternal mental health, neurological development and it’s links with child development within the last few years and although Blackpool are still in the early days of development she will discuss how all local partnerships can be involved in the shaping of PIMH services and to start thinking about having a ‘keeping the baby in mind’ concept in Blackpool.

      Monday 25th September 2017 - Brain Game

      Annette Algie, Business Manager and Sarah Gorst, Community Engagement Officer at the Centre for Early Child Development. Developed by Judy Cameron, PhD (Professor of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh) the Brain Game is an interactive workshop that demonstrates the significance of early childhood experiences in the development of brain architecture and lifelong health.

       Feel free to contact us at to book your place or ask any questions!


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