OAP group’s urgent appeal

NMAC11-0373-1'Cornwater Club feature.'Club members are joined by senior support worker Jackie Jebb, caterer/cook Jule Hannah and  club supporter, Coun. Chris Barnfather.
NMAC11-0373-1'Cornwater Club feature.'Club members are joined by senior support worker Jackie Jebb, caterer/cook Jule Hannah and club supporter, Coun. Chris Barnfather.

BLIDWORTH grandmother Edith Jones felt isolated and alone when she lost her sight almost three years ago.

Apart from her family she had few visitors and did not feel confident enough to leave home.

Like dozens of other elderly people in the Blidworth and Ravenshead area, Edith regained her confidence and made new friends by visiting the Cornwater Club.

The club, which meets at Raven’s Lodge in Ravenshead three mornings each week, is a friendship group for senior citizens.

Members gather for art classes, movement to music exercises, flower arranging and quizzes, followed by a meal.

Despite helping many hundreds of residents since it was formed, the club is currently facing a funding crisis after its support from the Lottery came to an end last year.

The Big Lottery Fund provided £44,000 every year for the club, almost half of its overall funding.

And now in a bid to find new sponsors, club organisers have launched a funding appeal to create a ‘Friends of Ravenshead Day Centre’.

The appeal was launched last week when county, borough and parish councillor Chris Barnfather donated £1,000 from his discretionary fund.

The club will now be contacting every household in Ravenshead, and possibly Blidworth, to ask for support.

At a meeting of the club last Friday, Edith said she would not know what to do if it was forced to close.

“I used to be stuck inside four walls and without the club I would not go anywhere,” she said.

“It has made a real difference and I would be devastated if it closed. I would urge anyone who can help to support us.”

Fellow club member and great-grandma Jess Plaskett (76) started attending the club after moving to Blidworth when her husband died.

“I saw a leaflet about the club so came along and have never looked back,” she said.

“It is nice to have so many lovely people to talk to. My son says it has done me a world of good and he is right.

“I was a bit of a loner when my husband died so the club is important to me. I would be devastated if I couldn’t come.”

Ravenshead Day Centre’s chairman, Ron Walker, said even a small amount of money from local people would help.

“If only a few hundred families were each able to donate just £10 a month, it would secure our future,” he said.

Anyone who can help the Cornwater Club should contact Mansfield 797673 and for more information visit www.ravensheaddaycentre.com