Surviving winter: The centre where a warm welcome is guaranteed

Keeping warm at Age Connected in Great Yarmouth

'Well, Warm, and Woolly' has been hailed a success at Age Connected in Great Yarmouth. Pictured are Frances Stewart, Andrea King, Paula Ixer and Kim Naim. - Credit: Liz Coates

People have been handed top tips on coping with the cold this winter from a centre which prides itself on the warmth of its welcome.

The prospect of a gloomy winter is daunting for many, especially on the back of a long and often lonely 18 months - but Age Connected in Great Yarmouth is doing its bit to combat the worst of it.

More than 100 people attended an open day at the Regent Street centre aimed at giving advice about how to say warm and healthy this winter.

'Well, Warm and Woolly' saw dozens of knitted items made by the Acorn knitters handed out to visitors who could also learn about winter fuel payments, the best way to wrap up, and keeping active.

There With You This Winter

There With You This Winter - Credit: Archant

There was also a cookery demonstration by Simon Risi showing how nutritious food could be made from cheap ingredients.

Centre manager Andrea King said: "This building oozes laughter. People are very resilient.

"We really want to make a difference to people in the borough."

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She said people were worried about using extra energy and what their bills would be, and that getting out was harder for many once the cold kicked in.

But, she said, the aim of the centre was to inspire people to leave their homes and enjoy a full programme of activities at the warm and safe centre where friendships flourished.

She said she was delighted with the turnout for the winter woolly event.

Everyone who attended was offered tea, coffee and cake, with the event boosted by a donation from Hemsby Co-op worth £300.

She added they had the highest number of new members since the building opened in 2016.

Although you don't have to join, 300 people had.

Activities include a lunch club on Thursdays, a knitting club on Monday, Thai Chi, crafts, bingo and much more.

"It is about togetherness," she added.

"Home has become a prison for many. We see new members flourish. Everyone walks out with a smile on their face."

One woman said she would have struggled without the centre which was "like a family".

Our There With You This Winter campaign provides information and signposts organisations people can turn to if they are struggling.

To find out more about Age Connected call 01493 262052 or visit www.acgy.org.uk.

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