Christmas lunch for community

KINDHEARTED Ottery residents are organising a Christmas lunch for the community.

The event to be held at the Institute, in Yonder Street, on December 25, is open to anyone who would like some company on the special day.

It is the brain child of Brian and Wendy Cammack, of Exeter Road.

“It’s a dream of Wendy’s to run such an event, as we have seen around and about many people who have a rough Christmas,” said Brian. “This isn’t just people on their own, but families and couples who might be struggling to make ends meet.”

While the parish church is spearheading the organisation of the lunch, many community groups, including the Later Life Forum, and the police, have got involved since the idea was first mooted five weeks ago.

“It’s become very much a community effort,” said Brian.

On the volunteer front, the support has been impressive. Initially it was thought a group of about 12 would be needed to help cook, serve and clear up. Within the first week, 18 people had come forward. The figure now stands at 25.

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Guests will be welcomed with mulled wine, then served a turkey dinner with all the trimmings. A vegetarian option will be available.

Brian was due to order two turkeys from Clarksons in the town on Monday, which Rill Farm has offered to cook. People have already donated Christmas puddings and wine to the cause.

“Ottery is a very good town for community activities, we haven’t had to push it all, people have just come forward,” said Brian.

After-lunch entertainment is currently being arranged.

Tickets cost �5 per person. The closing date for reserving a place is Monday, 13 December. More information is available from Ottery Tourist Information Centre on (01404) 813964 or St Mary’s Church office (01404) 812062.