Christmas 2023

2023 has been a busy year for everyone at Aim Up.

The people we support have been busy engaging in their community, learning and developing their independent living skills. We’re incredibly proud of what everyone has achieved. 

Alongside our Christmas newsletter, we have put together a short video with some of our favourite photos from 2023. 

We hope you enjoy catching up on our news, and would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.

Our Social Enterprise launches Afternoon Tea

Our Social Enterprise, The Portland Guesthouse provides those living with a disability the opportunity to gain real life work experience and support to achieve qualifications in Hospitality. As our Social Enterprise develops, the team are now launching Afternoon Tea. 

A lovely addition for our Guests, but also an additional opportunity for our Students.

Through out the courses we offer at The Portland Guesthouse, our Students learn about Food safety, service and preparation. 

Our students actively participate in the preparation and service of breakfast. Obtaining knowledge and understanding of food safety, service and preparation – in a true to life environment.

As well as breakfast our Students also bake sweet treats such as flapjacks and banana bread for our guests. These are left in the rooms, as part of our hospitality trays. 

Launching Afternoon Tea enables our Social Enterprise to provide further training and work experience to our students, who will use their skills to bake, prepare and serve Afternoon Tea. 

A glance at whats on offer at The Portland Guesthouse (our Social Enterprise)

To find out more about The Portland Guesthouse’s Afternoon Tea, view their menu or book please visit their website.

October Newsletter

Since our last newsletter in July, lots has happened across the charity. From our annual Garden Party to our very own Music Festival – and everything in between, this newsletter is full of good news stories from the last three months.

To catch up on all our news, please read our newsletter below:

Introducing our new Registered Manager

We would like to introduce you to our new Registered Manager (of our Home Care and Support Services)  Simon who starts his new role, today, on 1st September 2023.

Simon has worked for the Charity for 7 years and has a wealth of knowledge and experience to ensure the quality of our support continues.

Simon will spend some time working with Bernie to ensure a smooth transition. Simon will be out in the services to talk to service users and staff over the next few weeks to talk about his plans to improve our services.

We’re sure you will join us in congratulating Simon on his new role as our Registered Manager!

Our Holiday Blog

At the end of June, we were fortunate enough to be gifted a holiday by Cheltenham Lions. We spent the week in Burnham on Sea, and because we had such a wonderful time we decided to write a small blog post to share what we got up to.

We had a long walk on the beach

We enjoyed a meal out.

On the greyest day, we headed to the arcade and played lots of games. 

And another walk on the beach!

We love animals, so we spent an afternoon at the local farm park feeding the goats.

We spent time mooching in the shops

And stopped to buy a drink and have some lunch.

At the end of our busy days, we’d snuggle down in the caravan, switch our tele on and relax!

Newsletter – February 2023

This month, our lovely Ambassador Emma came to visit and catch up on all our latest news. Since her visit, she’s spent time writing our latest newsletter, sharing stories from across our services, and our upcoming fundraising events that you can get involved in. 

To catch up on all our news, please read our newsletter below: 

Charity Concert

On Friday 24th March, the ‘The Tuesdays/Cheltones Singing Groups’ and The Gloucestershire Police Male Voice Choir have joined forces to bring us this year’s charity concert. 

Taking place at St Marks C of E Church between 7pm and 9pm, the Friday evening promises to be enjoyable for all who attend. On top of both performances, during the interval there will be chance to have refreshments (tea, coffee, and biscuits) and take part in the raffle. 

Tickets: £10 Adults, £5 under 18s
All tickets are sold online, via our Eventbrite page. To join us, please click below:

For information about both The Tuesdays/Cheltones Singing Groups and The Gloucestershire Police Male Voice Choir, please visit the links below

Cheltenham Singing Groups (The Tuesdays/Cheltones Singing Groups)

The Gloucestershire Police Male Voice Choir

Our Social Enterprise – an award winning Guest House.

Awarded December 2022
Awarded January 2023

Since opening our doors in January 2020, we’ve welcomed over 4000 guests across 3000 bed nights (not including when we closed our doors during the pandemic, and opened up for free to key workers!). Across the sites we advertise, our guests have left over 900 reviews, providing valuable feedback to our team.

But on top of all of this, our Social Enterprise has provided meaningful opportunities to 9 students, some of whom are still with us, working their way through our Hospitality Course (endorsed by The Institute of Hospitality), others are splitting their time between The Portland Guesthouse and their supported placements in other hospitality venues, and some have moved on to new opportunities.

We’re thrilled to share with our supporters that in December 2022, our Social Enterprise received another visit from a member of the Visit England Team. Their stay with us resulted in securing their three awards for another year. We can continue to say that we are holders of the Visit England Silver Award, Four Star Accommodation award and their infamous egg cup (Breakfast Award). 

Then in January 2023, we received a letter from Glenn Fogel President & Chief Executive Officer of , to let us know that The Portland Guest House has won one of their Travellers Review Awards for 2023!

Receiving these awards helps shine a light on all the hard work taking place at our Social Enterprise, so a big thank you to our staff team (past and present) who have helped make our Social Enterprise a success! We can’t wait to see what the future brings.

If you think joining our Social Enterprise might help you or someone you know, and would like to know more – please click here!

If you’re a local hospitality business / a business that recognises the transferable skills those working in hospitality can bring to your work force, and would like to work with us to provide supported placements, or the opportunity for our students to gain paid employment – please email us:

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Cheltenham -please visit our website –, and book your stay to enjoy our award winning accommodation and breakfasts.

BBC Radio Gloucestershire

On the 12th of January we were joined by Maddie Simpson from BBC Gloucestershire. Tune in to her show on Friday 13th January between 69m and 7pm to hear from some of the Aim Up team, find out more about the work we do and our future plans!

To listen live: BBC Radio Gloucestershire 

To listen after 10pm: BBC Radio Gloucestershire (BBC Sounds)


Please follow the wonderful Maddie Simpson on Twitter, by clicking here