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How a Staffordshire Library crochet club saved a woman's life

Posted on Wednesday 6th December 2023
Rugeley Library Crochet Club NEWSROOM

Rugeley Library Crochet Club

Many residents across the county find fun and friendship in the variety of clubs and activities hosted by Staffordshire County Council’s libraries but, for one 76-year-old Rugeley woman, it was lifesaving. 

Helen Milward began attending the Rugeley Library Crochet Club when it was founded just after the coronavirus pandemic.

Having just suffered the loss of both her husband and her daughter, Helen struggled with her newfound solitude. 

Helen said:

“I was lost. I came in one day and I was so shy – I never looked back. I’ve never met such lovely people. They saved my life really because I was very down. 

“There’s no bickering, there’s no arguing, we all get on, we help each other. We love it. I absolutely love it. It’s the highlight of my time.” 

The Rugeley Library Crochet Club, also known as the ‘Crochet Crazy Club’ was founded two years ago by Library Assistant, Lauren Pinkey-Boydell. 

The group meets every Wednesday from 10am to 12pm and now also every alternative Saturday due to increasing popularity.  

During sessions, members happily chat away as they crochet and enjoy a hot drink. 

The club is suited to all abilities so, even if you have never picked up a crochet hook before, Lauren will be on hand to teach you everything she knows.

Lauren said:

“We find interesting patterns for each other, I get weird and wonderful yarn and new things for us to try and it’s just really lovely. 

“A lot of the friendships made here just kind of branch out into real life and everyone looks out for each other. We’ll bring in cake on birthdays and things like that and it’s just really nice.” 

The club gets involved in lots of community events, including Age UK Staffordshire’s Big Knit, and the late Queen’s Platinum Jubilee when they had a street party and crocheted figurines. 

This Christmas, they will crochet an entire gingerbread village and go out for a meal together. 

Cabinet member for Communities and Culture at SCC, Victoria Wilson, said:

“Libraries are the backbones of our communities. They can help in so many different ways, from giving you access to helpful resources and teaching you new skills to providing companionship. 

“Our libraries have so many clubs and activities on offer for all ages and abilities. See what’s out there for you.”  

Staffordshire County Council’s Here To Help campaign focuses on sharing information, advice and support to help residents manage cost-of-living pressures.   

Find out what clubs and activities are on offer at your local library by visiting the county council’s dedicated cost-of-living support website.

Watch on YouTube: How a Staffordshire Library Crochet Club saved a Rugeley woman’s life

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