A resource and chat room for guests from Ukraine to the United Kingdom

Main Menu

Recent posts

Quote from: grahame on Jun 15, 2022, 08:21 AMSign ups this week - 13th to 17th June 2022
Taking place 20th June to 14th July in Chippenham, Trowbridge and Salisbury
Contact there is

Where will this course take place in Chippenham?
Thank you
Публікація (переважно) англійською мовою - це все, щоб зробити вашу практику.
Публикация (в основном) на английском языке - это все о вашей практике.

What: English Speaking Practise
Why: To help guests who are learning English
Whom: (organiser): Graham Ellis -
When: Tuesday 21st June 2022, from 18:30 for about 2 hours
Where: 48, Spa Road, Melksham, SN12 7NY (where I live)
Whom: (attendees): Adults and teens - venue not suitable for children
Cost: Free of charge
Booking: Please let me know if you plan to come

While your Melksham "English for speakers of other languages" teacher was on leave, I helped while you practised English at thatmeetingspace. Some of you found this useful, and asked me if I can help with more practise. Yes, I can, but at a different place, and at a different time of the week.  We will try it out next Tuesday and if it works we can do it regularly on Tuesday evenings.

Posting (mostly) in English - this is all about making your practise.
Sign ups this week - 13th to 17th June 2022
Taking place 20th June to 14th July in Chippenham, Trowbridge and Salisbury
Contact there is
About the forum >> Про форум / Email issues
Last post by grahame - Jun 10, 2022, 08:11 AM
Spam filters have been changed. If you have emailed our team in recent days and not received a reply when you expected one, it could be that we didn't get your message, or that you didn't get our response even though it was written. Please contact me in a different way (via messenger) if you haven't heard back - sorry, but for a day or two at least it'll be no good just resending, nor grumbling to your friends that we have stopped responding!

GoogleMail / Gmail have changed their spam filters, and (I suspect in common with many others) we are finding our (genuine, of course!) outgoing emails to @gmail addresses caught in Google's wider net.  Several of our team members themselves have @gmail addresses, and we have been been forwarding "" emails to them, and they are being caught too - so the issues are both outgoing and incoming.

Although the changes eminate from Google's change, I suppose we hold an element of responsibility for using mature email systems that are susceptible to looking "spammy", for which I apologise.  Not much good us asking Google to "whitelist" us even though they were the ones who triggered the problem. We're so small as to be irrelevant to Google, and in any case it would take far too long and be hard to test.  We are implementing various work-arounds (ongoing work) but again are somewhat reliant on our service providers as we use shared servers, and also none of us is a "mail geek". 

* You should be able to reach me personally via from any email account including @gmail ones.

* I am in the process of moving to a new email system from the mature old one, and am pretty sure I'll be able to write a reply that reaches you, even if you're @gmail.
An update - 8th June 2022

In the first phase of ten weeks, we introduced dozens of hosts in west and north Wiltshire to guest families from Ukraine, got them talking to each other, and where there was a suitable match under the "Homes for Ukraine" scheme provided an information exchange as we all (including the government!) learn into the system.

Many guests families have now arrived in the area - both through our introductions and others - and there are many happy families, as well as significant challenges for almost everyone involved. Our group has moved on to assist with putting people in touch with regard to matters such as ... Bank; Boredom; Biometrics; Children; Church; Cleaning; Cooking; Culture; Dentist; Diet; Doctor; English and lessons; Friends; Home contact; Hours; Individuals; Isolation; Language; Laundry; Loneliness; Meal times; Motivation, Moves; Keys; Payments / finance; Pets; Phone; Politeness; Possessions; Prices; Pride; Privacy; PTSD; Public Transport; Safeguarding; Schools; Sport; Time Constraints; Tiredness; Translation; Universal Credit; Usefulness / responsibilities; Visas; WiFi ... each of these just a word I have written down but which could be a whole chapter in a book, from both a host and guest viewpoint.

Our group has moved on, then, to be primarily supporting people on this second phase. We do still have a few unmatched hosts on our "books", but they tend to be the rather specialised ones with whom only a very few guest families could match, and we have a number of unmatched guests on our books too - sadly, many of them are larger families where UK rules require three or more rooms, and hosts with three or for spare rooms are rare as hen's teeth. Also sadly, many of the remaining potential guests are in such situations that they are difficult to contact.

So now is the logical time, after helping with the peak load of introductions in March, April and May for us to step back from that role and leave it to web sites like Opora and groups like "UK Accommodation, Help & Sponsorship for Ukrainians" - on Facebook at with over 50,000 members. We have resources on our page and website to help people along in the process and will very much continue to do so - we have massive recent personal experience!

We are now in that second phase - supporting sponsors and families matched through the paperwork process right from working out which visa applications are made and how, through to travel plans, making the journey, initial arrival and settling in with the mountain of new experiences for everyone, and the whole businesses of guests establishing themselves in a new country, home and language, and hosts getting to terms with the fact that this is much more than just putting up friends in a spare room for a few days.

This second phase is very much the focus of our activities now - both assisting our own guests and helping inform others - arranging contacts and meetings, sending URLs and suggestions, being ears to listen. All words easily written but there is so much to these roles!

If the first phase was our major for the last ten week, this second phase is our major for the next ten, and perhaps a little longer. We then look forward to a third phase.

Many wonderful hosts have opened their homes and hearts to guests, doing so to help refugees fleeing from a war and with nowhere else liveable to go. But few of those hosts would see this as a lifetime commitment, and few of the guests will want to remain where they first found decent refuge for ever. Under "Homes for Ukraine", we hosts have promised six month of availability. It sounded like a very long time way back in March, but here we are in June and the six months is up for some as early as September.

We are already seeing some host and guest pairing - with lovely people on both 'sides' - where the match really is not working. "What have I come to?" a guest may wonder; "who have I taken in" may a host think. When you think of it, the matches have some similarities to blind dates and in spite of the best intents of the matchmaker. No doubt there will be lots of lifetime close friendships made, but for the majority this is a passing phase, a rescue, an invigorating and learning experience, but a transient one.

We are already, even as guests continue to arrive, turning our thoughts to the longer term. As they arrive, guests have no plan - they don't know how long they are here for, they don't know where they go next. It might, or might not, be back to Ukraine. It might, or might not, be to their own place in England. It might be to another host. It might even be steered by a new personal relationship, and it might mean that families that came as a unit split as they move on. We have our thought here on this. So much is a definite "don't know" at the moment, but hopefully this piece gives you an idea of where we are, where we are going, and why we are stepping back from matching to move on to new phases and prepare for new upcoming challenges.

(signed) Graham Ellis with my "Homes for Ukraine" hat
Ukraine Support Group - Melksham / Corsham / Lacock & Chippenham
Events and help in west and north Wiltshire ...
01225 708225 or 0797 4 925 928 ... 48 Spa Road Melksham SN12 7NY
This post in English, Russian and Ukrainian
Цей пост англійською, російською та українською мовами
Этот пост на английском, русском и украинском языках

Conversational English - English for Speakers of Other Languages.

Speaking and understanding in English is vital in most jobs, and in daily life in Wiltshire too.  Lessons are available and being provided by different organisations but speakers of other languages still need to practise outside class. Next week, we are setting up two meetings where you can practise with other who are also learning. We will arrange this in small groups, with each group including a mixture of people and abilities, and with suggested subjects to talk about.

At Thatmeetingspace, Melksham Market Place
10:00 - 12:30 Monday 13th June and
10:00 - 12:30 Wednesday 15th June

Anyone from about 15 years old welcome. We are planning this for people who have been on lessons already, but newcomers are very welcome too. Please let me know ( ) know if you will be coming, or it you have any questions.  Big thank you to John Firth for making the venue available for us.

If you find these days useful, we can run further sessions too.

Разговорный английский - английский для говорящих на других языках.

Говорить и понимать по-английски жизненно важно на большинстве рабочих мест, а также в повседневной жизни в Уилтшире. Уроки доступны и проводятся различными организациями, но носителям других языков все же необходимо практиковаться вне класса. На следующей неделе мы организуем две встречи, на которых вы сможете попрактиковаться с теми, кто тоже учится. Мы организуем это в небольших группах, где каждая группа будет состоять из разных людей и способностей, а также с предложенными темами для разговора.

At Thatmeetingspace, Мелкшем Маркет Плейс
10:00 - 12:30 понедельник 13 июня и
10:00 - 12:30 Среда, 15 июня

Приглашаются все желающие от 15 лет. Мы планируем это для людей, которые уже были на уроках, но новички также очень рады. Пожалуйста, дайте мне знать ( ), если вы приедете, или если у вас есть какие-либо вопросы. Большое спасибо Джону Ферту за предоставленную нам площадку.

Если вы найдете эти дни полезными, мы также можем провести дополнительные сессии.

Розмовна англійська – англійська для носіїв інших мов.

Розмова й розуміння англійською є життєво важливим для більшості робіт, а також у повсякденному житті в Уілтширі. Уроки доступні й надаються різними організаціями, але людям, які говорять іншими мовами, все одно потрібно займатися поза уроками. Наступного тижня ми організуємо дві зустрічі, де ви зможете потренуватися з іншими, які також навчаються. Ми організуємо це в невеликих групах, кожна група включає людей і здібності, а також пропонує предмети для розмови.

На Thatmeetingspace, Melksham Market Place
10:00 - 12:30 понеділок 13 червня і
10:00 - 12:30 середа 15 червня

Запрошуємо всіх бажаючих від 15 років. Ми плануємо це для людей, які вже були на уроках, але новачкам теж дуже раді. Будь ласка, повідомте мені ( ) чи будете ви приїжджати, чи у вас є запитання. Велике спасибі Джону Ферту за те, що він надав нам доступ.

Якщо ви вважаєте ці дні корисними, ми також можемо провести додаткові сеанси.
Quote from: austkp on Jun 05, 2022, 09:21 PMQuick note about item 23.

If you have other people (lodgers or relatives maybe) living in the house then you will also be asked for a passport copy for any British or Irish people and a driving license or Bio-metric ID card copy for anybody who is not British or Irish.

Yes, indeed ... there are items on the application which to my mind are intrusive.  I can understand that some more detailed checks are needed on the applicants, but it did feel as a host "we are opening our home out of generosity - why are we being investigated ..."
Quick note about item 23.

If you have other people (lodgers or relatives maybe) living in the house then you will also be asked for a passport copy for any British or Irish people and a driving license or Bio-metric ID card copy for anybody who is not British or Irish.

Here is Faresaver's map of where their buses go in Melksham - some individual journeys vary and other operator's routes (National Express, Frome Bus, and Swindon Buses) and trains are not shown.  Bus stops on the x34 are not shown either for some (?) reason.