About two months ago, I saw a post on one of the local Facebook selling groups, gauging interest in a playgroup. The poster, Zoe, had realised that there is a lack of places to go with young children in Preston, particularly in our area. I have found the same problem given that I am not yet driving, and I was excited to hear that it was to be held at St Davids on Eldon Street in the church hall at the top of the road to me. The same church building in which I spent an extortionate number of my childhood hours for various endeavours such as Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and The Avengers – a marching band, along with various fundraising jumble sales and the like.
Over the coming months, Zoe was sure to include everybody in the planning of the group from finding convenient times, and days to even the name – Tiny Tots. That much so, that there was already a community feel to the group before the open day was even announced!
Eventually, there was an announcement for an open day which sadly fell on a day that I was going to struggle to get there! I only managed to go for the last 30 minutes or so, but despite the fact that almost everybody had left I was still made to feel welcome, and I wasn’t made to feel like they wanted to pack up and leave, despite having been there all day!
When we walked in, I could not believe the sheer amount of toys that filled the church hall! The toys ranged in all different age groups, from activity mats and swings for the tiny’s to ball pools (Robin’s favourite!) and noisy toys to puzzles and colouring and such for older kids. Honestly, there was that many toys I almost got giddy and forgot that they weren’t for me to play with!
There was a raffle instead of an admission charge (we won a prize!), face painting (we wasn’t in time, but I doubt Robin would have held still for this!), and cakes and refreshments for all. I passed given that I had just eaten dinner, but I’m sure they were delicious. We pretty much just spent half an hour in the ball pool, and we chatted to Zoe about the day and the intentions for the future. Sadly, the myriad of activities that used to go on at St David’s seems to have dwindled dramatically over the years. Its such a shame as there isn’t much going on in Preston anymore, and nothing like this, so I’m grateful for all the hard work that Zoe’s putting into it all.
The plans for the future include more days if there is a call for it, specific activity days such as messy play (particularly in the school holidays when they are not currently running) and so many more great ideas.
The playgroup is going to be running currently on a Friday morning between 9.45 and 11.45 and is going to cost £1.00 per child with additional children being 50p from birth – school. If this wasn’t reasonable enough, this is also going to include adult and child refreshments! The group is officially starting on the 10th June, and I cannot wait. I think this is what is needed around here, and so much hard work has gone into making sure that it’s inclusive of as many different people and ages as possible.
The playgroup is held at St Davids Church Hall, Eldon Street, Preston, PR22AY.