Tilling tea and cake, a huge success


Last Saturday the weather was miserable, the rain kept on coming but it didn’t dampen the spirits of over 30 visitors who came along to the inaugural Tilling Tea and Cake event at Tilling Green Community Centre.

This new monthly ‘Saturday Social’ was organised by Chris Pollard founder of Friends Altogether in Rother (FAiR) and Jo Sharman, community development coordinator at St Michael’s Hospice. FAiR is a recently registered charity which addresses loneliness and isolation by encouraging people to develop friendship, fellowship and fun through befreinding and social interaction within the Rother community.

The event was made possible thanks to the generosity of Charlotte from The Lyon, The Witch and The Wardrobe who donated over £1,100 to the charity.

Happy days!

Once again Jempson’s also showed their support with their generous donation of cakes and pastries which were very much appreciated and goody bags meant nothing was wasted.

Guests came from a wide area including Tilling Green and Rye but also from Bexhill, Hastings, Wittersham, Camber and Valley Park. Councillors Cheryl Creaser and Simon McGurk showed their support so too did our local MP Sally-Ann Hart and her office manager, Sarah Howard Smith.

Sally Ann-Hart MP with Chris Pollard
Chris Pollard with Cllr Simon McGurk

Chris Pollard commented: ” I am hugely grateful to everyone who braved the dreadful weather to attend our first Tilling, Tea and Cake. The turnout was beyond my expectation and I feel we can say it was a resounding success. There was a buzz in the room, filled with shared laughter, connection and community spirit which was humbling for me.

“I would like to publicly thank the volunteers for decorating the room, meeting and greeting, making fresh tea and coffee, cutting cakes, washing up and providing many ‘goody bags’.

“The positive feedback encourages us to develop FAiR, by listening to people. To provide carefully considered social opportunities for families, and people of all ages across our Rother Community to develop friendship, fellowship and fun in their lives.”

Deep in conversation, that’s what it’s all about

The following is a selection of some of the feedback received:

“Thank you for taking care of us and giving us such a warm welcome.”

“People of a certain age are often forgotten – but not here at FAiR this morning.
Next time I shall bring my friend.”

“Oh how wonderful to see such a great mix of people.”

“The room was filled with a special energy. Great decorations too – I hardly recognised this room.”

“What a treat for me this morning. This afternoon, I shall enjoy another cup of tea and a piece of my favourite cake. Thank you for the goody cake bag.”

“A memorable morning and shared moments. Everyone is friendly and welcoming.”

“I felt nervous walking into a crowded room. Feeling the warm welcome and friendliness, meant I relaxed. My anxiety fell away. I cannot believe I sat at a table, and joined an animated chatty group of people. I shall definitely attend on December 16th.”

“Well done for inviting Sally-Ann Hart. It gave me an opportunity to bend her ear on some local problems.”

If you missed out you would be very welcome at the next Tilling Tea and Cake event on Saturday December 16 from 10.00 am-12.00 pm, Tilling Green Community Centre. As an added bonus there will also be warmed mince pies to get you in the festive spirit!

If you would like to learn more how you may become a volunteer at our monthly ‘Tilling, Tea and Cake’ or on how to become a befriender, please email chris@fair.org.uk or call the office direct on 01797 458832.

Image Credits: Nick Forman , Jo Sharman .

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