IF you live in the Burntisland area and want to make new friends, then ‘the Wednesday Group’ would give you a warm welcome.
The Wednesday Social Club, to give it its full title, was originally set up and run by the Scottish Old Age Pensioners Association, but when it was faced with closure, members of the Toll Centre Committee took it over and it is now run as an independent group, although it still meets and gets support from the centre.
The group meets on the second and third Wednesday of every month between September and May, and currently has around 40 members aged between 50 and 99 years!
At the sprightly age of 99, Mary Thain is the group’s oldest and longest-serving member, having joined during the 1970s, and is still in regular attendance at the meetings.
Group meetings are always a lively affair and the varied programme includes singing, dancing, quizzes, cooking, crafts, reminiscence sessions and outings, and this year’s end of season outing will be a bus trip to Broughty Ferry followed by tea back at Pettycur Bay.
The cost of the meetings are subsidised to keep them affordable, and each member pays a small fee to help cover costs. The group also receives help from Fife Council and seeks grant funding from other bodies such as Age Scotland and the Mary Leishman Foundation. It also holds regular raffles and home baking sales to boost funds.
Susan Thompson is one of the volunteers with the group.
She said: “It is a good little group and everyone gets on. We always have a good laugh and it is a great way to make new friends if you are new to the town or want to get out for a while.
“If people are unable to get along because of transport issues then we can arrange a minibus to pick them up. We are always keen to welcome new members and, although it used to be a pensioners’ group it is now open to people of any age.
“It is mainly women, but we do have a few men who come along regularly, and although most of our members come from Burntisland, that is not a condition for joining us and we would welcome people from the surrounding towns and villages.”
Maureen Thomson, a group member, said: “We all really appreciate the group and look forward to coming along to the meetings. It is a really good way to socialise and meet new people, and we do lots of fun activities.”