New face at K’boro centre

The Friendship and Leisure centre's new chairman and trustee Dorothy Gatting with volunteer Ken Gambles, secretary Brenda Johnson, volunteer Anne Atkinson, treasurer Gillian Mercer, volunteer Jeanette Mowat and trustee Susan Boddy. (12100141AM)

The Friendship and Leisure centre's new chairman and trustee Dorothy Gatting with volunteer Ken Gambles, secretary Brenda Johnson, volunteer Anne Atkinson, treasurer Gillian Mercer, volunteer Jeanette Mowat and trustee Susan Boddy. (12100141AM)

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A new volunteer has taken over the reins at a long-serving Knaresborough centre for older people.

Dorothy Gatting has taken on the running of the Friendship and Leisure Centre at 23 Market Place, Knaresborough.

Dorothy, who has volunteered as a helper at the centre for many years, took over from Rosa Willans who ran the centre for 40 years before she died in May this year.

Now the managing committee of three, which runs the centre, wants to encourage more people to make use of its services

Dorothy said: “Our numbers attending are diminishing, so if you don’t use it you will lose it. Some afternoons there are not many visitors using the centre. We do want to keep the centre going, so do please come along and support us.”

The Friendship and Leisure Centre began in Knaresborough in 1960, when well-known town resident Frederick Frazer bought the house and left it in trust for the older Knaresborough Old Peoples’ Welfare Association.

Fifty years later, the centre is still open serving tea and coffee from 10am-noon, and 2-4pm Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and 10am-noon Thursday and Saturday.

The centre also has daily papers to read, and runs popular clubs including a Scrabble club on Thursday afternoons, and a bingo club on Wednesday evenings.

Volunteers from Knaresborough churches and WIs help staff the rooms, Dorothy said, but new volunteers are always welcome, Dorothy added.