Silver Socials project aims to tackle loneliness through art

Enjoying a cyanotype workshop. Photo: Breckland Council

Enjoying a cyanotype workshop. Photo: Breckland Council - Credit: Archant

Free creative and crafty activity sessions are being held for older residents in Breckland, in a bid to tackle the issues of loneliness and isolation.

Sewing workshops being held in Breckland. Photo: Breckland Council

Sewing workshops being held in Breckland. Photo: Breckland Council - Credit: Archant

The workshops have been running in Ashill and Necton and will be expanded to Mattishall, Harling, and Shipdham in the next fortnight.

The project aims to engage older residents in their communities and prevent them becoming lonely, with the help of artists from different backgrounds.

Workshops are accessible and arts-based and held in a friendly environment to encourage participants to share stories and memories while trying out crafts.

Launched in September, The Silver Social project has held workshops on mono-printing, sewing and cyanotype print-making in Ashill and Necton.

Cyanotype artwork created by Breckland residents. Photo: Breckland Council

Cyanotype artwork created by Breckland residents. Photo: Breckland Council - Credit: Archant


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The programme has benefitted from £185,700 of funding from the National Lottery Arts Council, Norfolk County Council Public Health and Breckland Council.

Councillor Paul Claussen said: 'We've had such a positive response to The Silver Social events so far. I've been delighted to see local residents embrace art and culture, and learn new skills.

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'People have been inspired to take up a new hobby and residents in Necton have actually formed their own weekly sewing club as a result of taking part in the silver social sewing workshops.

'I am looking forward to the next chapter.'

Getting crafty at a sewing workshop run by artist Sarah Harley. Photo: Breckland Council

Getting crafty at a sewing workshop run by artist Sarah Harley. Photo: Breckland Council - Credit: Archant

Shipdham residents are already working on a project with the artist and poet Martin Figura, who is helping the knitting group create a poetry patchwork of the history of the village.

He will hold a drop in session at Shipdham WI hall on October 23 and 24 from 1pm to 5pm on both days. All are welcome to attend.

Textile illustrator Lisa Little will hold a tea party in Mattishall where residents will be invited to share their stories before having their photographs taken which will be printed onto tea towels and embroidered with their stories.

Sessions will be in Mattishall Memorial Hall on October 17, 20, and 26, from 9am to 4.30pm.

Sewing workshops being held in Breckland. Photo: Breckland Council

Sewing workshops being held in Breckland. Photo: Breckland Council - Credit: Archant

Harling residents are hosting Glass House Dance, who are running an open house at Harling Old School Hall during half term.

For more information, visit The Silver Social.

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