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Redlingfield villagers enjoy bags of cheer

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The residents of Redlingfield received a host of goodies thanks to a group of villagers wanting to put a smile back on people’s faces.

The initiative saw more than 60 ‘cheer up bags’ distributed – one for very household – with the aim of helping to ease people through isolation.

Janet Norman-Philips, parish council clerk, said: “The coronavirus has worried a lot of people and has had quite an impact. A number of residents are elderly, have existing health issues or have young children.

Redlingfield resident Daryl Britton with his cheer up bag and his dog, Humphrey.
Redlingfield resident Daryl Britton with his cheer up bag and his dog, Humphrey.

“We also have some first responders living here and quite a few people who work in some of the key industries that have been needed to keep us all going over the past couple of months.

“So a group of people in the village decided that it would be a really nice idea to create these goodie bags.

“We thought at first that we would just do them for the elderly or families of key workers, but then realised that was the majority of people in the village – so it didn’t seem fair to exclude other people.”

The bags contained items including playing cards, toiletries, sweets, a bird feeder and bird food and packets of seeds to encourage youngsters and the less green-fingered to have a go at growing.

The village committee also put in some greeting cards and a copy of the village newsletter to keep people informed, with the items packaged in brown paper bags.

On top of this, a network of villagers have been helping people with their shopping, collecting medicines and providing a sympathetic ear during the coronavirus outbreak.

All of this work has been supported by grants from Suffolk Community Action, Mid Suffolk District Council, Redlingfield Parish Council and St Andrew’s Church.

Ms Norman-Philips said: “As well as those grants, we had lots of donations from individual villagers and local businesses, such as the Bruha Brewery and The Handy Man, both in Eye, which helped and supplied items at cost or with sizable discounts.

“There has always been a strong and supportive community here in Redlingfield, with people looking out for each other and with those who are happy to help.

“The cheer up bags just show that and we want to thank everyone who has been helping during this challenging time.”

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