A group of Edwinstowe pensioners have found a square meal with good company is a great antidote to loneliness.
Big- hearted volunteer Sue Howell has set up a luncheon club as part of her Edwinstowe Helping Hands community project.
Every Thursday around 30 OAPs enjoy a three course dinner for just £3 at Lynds Close Community Centre and have a good old chat.
Sue set up Edwinstowe Helping Hands when neighbours she grew up with all her life told her they had nowhere to go and missed the company of friends.
The luncheon club at Lynds close Community Centre meets every Thursday from 12noon-2pm.
Sue says it is all about making older people who might be isolated feel wanted and valued in their community.
She said: “There are some very lonely people around.
“They were saying to me ‘We have nowhere to go - we need company’.
“I thought we have that community centre and they are doing nothing with it.
“So I got them all together and said: What if I cook you all a dinner?
“And it went from there.”
The meals are cooked from scratch by Susan, supported by her team of helpers and senior citizens come from nearby to play games of Bingo have a cup of coffee and read the magazines.
When the Chad visited on Thursday, lasagne and meat pie and potatoes were on the menu as well as home made soup and sponge pudding.
Dorothy Lee 82, said: “It is excellent - where else can you get a three course meal for £3?
“The company goes a long way too - to sit and have a chat saves you talking to the telly. And if you can’t get here at any time she’ll do you a takeaway.
Mrs Lee, a widow for 20 years added: “It means a lot to mix and chat. You get to know who’s died and who hasn’t and how many bungalows are empty.”
Maureen Stocks, 68 said: “I live on my own - this gets me out to meet people.
“Some of us used to work together at the Coop many years ago all my working life it was natter natter.
“You got to know your customers by name - then suddenly you don’t see them. We want to put the word about we need something like this.
“I had to pluck courage to come on my own, even though I know them all.”
The group fundraises for itself with a tombola once a month on the High Street and car boot sales.
Edwinstowe Allotment Association helps by donating fresh produce and local stores have chipped in to help.