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Church lunch club celebrates the 25th anniversary
5:00pm Monday 11th February 2013 in News
RISINGHURST may have transformed over the past quarter of a century but one lunch club has remained consistent through the changes.
The Collinwood Road United Reformed Church lunch club has been celebrating its 25th anniversary.
About 45,000 meals have been served in that time to residents aged 60 and over.
The Rev Dick Wolff, minister of the church for just over seven years, said that some members had been there since the start.
Mr Wolff, 60, said: “Doris Butler, who led the kitchen team of volunteers for the first 12 years, is still a member as are six others of the original club.
“But over the 25 years Risinghurst and the neighbouring community has gone through big changes.
“There are a number of incomers who have moved into the area and a lot of those are elderly themselves.”
The club meets weekly on Tuesday lunchtimes and is regularly attended by 50 people.
About half a dozen volunteers help serve the meals.
Members attending the latest event tucked into a birthday cake.
Vera Brown, 96, who has been a member of the club since it formed, said: “It is a very happy little club and a friendly community.
“Apart from the lunch it is the company and meeting your friends there.”
Mr Wolff said: “There has been a big change in what has been a stable community. We recently had a couple move down from Manchester.
“They have found the lunch club a really good way of fitting into the community.”
Though it was set up by the church, with church members at the heart of it, the club has been strongly supported by members of the wider community. Groups who work with the lunch club include Risinghurst’s Women’s Institute.
Some years after the club formed members asked if there could be a short Christian service beforehand for those that would appreciate it.
This continues to this day with the support of a range of visiting speakers.
In 2009 the club received a Gold Community Star award from Oxfordshire County Council.