By Rachel Cole, Projects Officer
I first visited this Centre in April 2022; it was one of the Centres selected by RMBC to look at the usage. This Centre is used every single day by a group of lovely residents who hold and run regular activities and events. They see the Centre as an extension of their homes and say they would be lost without it; this is apparent in the Centre too as it has a lot of homemade furnishings around making it feel homely. As a lot of the residents live alone, the Centre gives them the opportunity to get together and have a chat, without having to go far.
Since then, I have visited the Centre on several occasions. On a weekly basis they hold coffee mornings, craft sessions, book club, film afternoons etc they also hold afternoon teas or parties for special events i.e. Christmas, Easter, Queens Jubilee etc. They are now looking at day trips for the group starting with an afternoon tea and a barge trip. The group are not a constituted group so all the money they have is raised by themselves. I am talking to them about becoming a constituted group to enable them to get and apply for funding. They do seem a little nervous about taking this step but are slowly coming around to the idea. I have passed their contact details onto John Heeley MP who has offered to support this group where he can too, as it falls in his area.
I have also submitted two ward housing hubs proposals with this group for extra lighting around the bungalows and a dropped kerb, this will make things easier for the residents on scooters and in wheelchairs.
Making Our Money Go Further and Energy Know How recently attended the Centre to speak to the residents and they all said afterwards how beneficial they had found the session. This was followed by a fish and chip lunch, which they loved. The residents have also been taking part in some gentle exercise classes.
This is a lovely active group of residents who I am really enjoying working with. I will continue to support the group where required.