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Warm and welcoming Community Lounges open this week

A scheme to offer warm and welcoming spaces for people struggling with the cost of living crisis will be rolled out in Hexham next week.

Hexham Community Lounges is an initiative which will see public venues opened up during daytime hours, to be used as community lounges.

From Monday (31st October), one venue will be opened each day, over five days per week from 9am to 5pm.

Hexham Trinity Methodist Church will open its doors as a community lounge on Monday, followed by The Torch Centre on Wednesday, the Eden Lounge & No. 28 on Thursday, Hexham West End Methodist Church on Friday, and Hexham Community Centre on Saturday.

This will take place each week at least until January 2023, when the scheme will be reviewed.

Rev Gareth Sherwood, Lead Minister for Hexham West End Methodist Church, said that while no official venues had been made available on Tuesdays and Sundays, people were encouraged to use other warm spaces, such as Hexham Abbey and Hexham Library when opening times allow.

Rev Gareth said the venues provided not just a safe, warm and welcoming environment, but would also be a community space where people would have the opportunity get to know and support each other.

He added: "In many ways I am furious that this is a necessary step in 21st century Britain. But we hope that through the community lounges, we can offer the help needed with safe, warm and welcoming spaces that reflects the positive community atmosphere of our town."

Rev Gareth said the community living room style offerings would provide comfortable seating, a TV, internet, somewhere to charge a phone, toys and games for children, and the opportunity to have teas, coffees and snacks for free, as well as a microwave if people wish to bring their own food.

For more information visit the Hexham Community Lounges page on Facebook.

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