A PILOT lunch club launched by AGE UK Darlington and the local NHS Trust has enjoyed its first taste of success.

Age UK teamed up with County Durham and Darlington Foundation Trust (CDDFT) to run the new clubs giving pensioners the chance to come together and dine on food prepared by the trust’s award-winning catering department.

The first club was held at Elm Ridge Methodist Church this afternoon and Age UK Darlington CEO Gillian Peel said its initial success had left volunteers on a high.

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She added: “We are honestly so delighted, it was everything that we wanted it to be; it was really nice with people chatting away and was just a really good, lovely mix of people.”

Stuart Wray, head of catering at the trust, said: “We are pleased to be able to offer people in the community a taste of our locally sourced food as well as a chance to make new friends and connect with like-minded people.

“This is the first of many events we hope to run in partnership with Age UK and we’re proud to be able to help out in any way we can.”

The Friends Lunch Club is on the second Tuesday of each month, and attendees can buy lunch of soup and a sandwich for £3.

Other clubs will be run weekly at various location and for more information contact 01325-362832.