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Change of venue fails to stop Bishop's Stortford Age Concern guests from having a wonderful Christmas lunch



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A late change of venue failed to prevent guests at Bishop's Stortford Age Concern's Christmas lunch from having a wonderful time.

Manager Annabelle Caley was confronted with having to change the venue at short notice after Stansted Airport's Novotel hotel was requisitioned for Covid-19 quarantine cases, but the team at McMullen's Coach and Horses at Thorley Street stepped up to ensure the event was a big success.

"Everyone said how wonderful it was and the food was amazing and the staff unbelievable," said Annabelle.

Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705455)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705455)

Guests were treated to a traditional festive lunch at the celebration on Monday December 13, followed by Christmas pudding and ice cream, and finished off with mince pies. They received a gift of a ceramic Christmas tree with sweets inside, donated by Kim Bird.

Annabelle stressed how crucial it was to go ahead with the lunch. "It's hugely important to have this time to celebrate," she said.

The food was paid for by Bishop's Stortford and Stansted Round Table, while local computer firm ITVET arranged the transport.

Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705461)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705461)

The centre had an in-house Christmas party on Friday December 17 when guests were given presents donated by the community and a little party bag containing mince pies, Christmas cake and sweets.

Bishop's Stortford Age Concern is based at The New Apton Centre in Apton Road. It runs a social centre for over-55s and aims to provide an opportunity for people to reconnect as part of an inclusive community. Among the activities provided are gentle exercise sessions, art and craft workshops, games, quizzes and support workshops.

Annabelle said guests at the centre had "provided a lovely community". She added: "One said to me 'It feels like coming to a family'."

She admitted that after taking on the role in October there had been challenges but added: "It is such a rewarding job."

New Apton Centre manager Annabelle Caley. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705725)
New Apton Centre manager Annabelle Caley. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705725)

For more information call 01279 504748 or email administration@thenewaptoncentre.org.

Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705154)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705154)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705155)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705155)
Mandy Reid. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705156)
Mandy Reid. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705156)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705443)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705443)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705453)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705453)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705454)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705454)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705457)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705457)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705463)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705463)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705543)
Age Concern Bishop's Stortford's Christmas dinner. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705543)
Annabelle Caley with Angela and Ron Alder. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705549)
Annabelle Caley with Angela and Ron Alder. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705549)
Plastic frog cracker prizes keep diners amused. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705555)
Plastic frog cracker prizes keep diners amused. Pic: Vikki Lince (53705555)
Day service leader Hilary shows off her Christmas hat. Pic: Vikki Lince (53706020)
Day service leader Hilary shows off her Christmas hat. Pic: Vikki Lince (53706020)


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