Monday, 21 October 2019

Old friends back together at belated Christmas lunch

Old friends back together at belated Christmas lunch

ELDERLY residents from Stoke Row enjoyed a belated Christmas lunch at the village hall.

More than 55 guests attended the event, which has been held annually for more than 30 years.

The guests enjoyed a traditional Christmas dinner of turkey with all the trimmings, various desserts and homemade mince pies.

Paul Clerehugh, who runs the Crooked Billet pub in the village, provided the main course for the second year in a row.

The guests were entertained by the Wallingford Handbell Ringers, including Alan and Gay Cooper, who reached the semi-final of Britain’s Got Talent in 2011. The event was run and financed by the Stoke Row village hall committee.

Organiser Tilley Smith, of Busgrove Road, Stoke Row, said: “We choose to have the event in January because everyone is very busy in December.

“The residents enjoy it because a lot of them grew up in the village together or they have worked in the village. It is like a reunion and cheers everyone up.”

Guest Lucy Parslow, 90, of Benares Grove, said: “We look forward to it every year. It started in the Eighties and it’s a lovely festive occasion.

“They call it our Christmas dinner. I know all the people who come from Stoke Row.” John Holder, 72, of Stoke Row Road, said: “It’s great because you can meet people from the village that you do not always have time to stand and talk to.”

His wife Valerie, 71, said: “I’ve been to this four or five times now. It is a chance for us to get together once a year. Although this is only a small village, somehow we do not see people, which is a bit of a shame.”

Hilary Sarney, 72, of Nottwood Lane, said: “I’ve come to this about 12 times. It’s always nice to catch up with people who have moved away as they are invited back.”

Rev Angela Linton, of the Langtree Team Ministry, said: “Stoke Row is a really lovely, friendly and wonderful village.”

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