HELPERS at Cockerton Methodist church hall hope to launch a luncheon club following the refurbishment of a kitchen area.

The new kitchen, funded by a Help the Aged grant of more than £5,000, also boasts a new cooker and energy efficiency measures courtesy of British Gas. It offers a variety of facilities for older people, including social clubs, support schemes and advice.

Church members are also keen to start a luncheon club.

But before plans go ahead one more piece of vital equipment is needed - a fridge-freezer.

Mr John Skipsey, project leader at the church, told the D&S Times that plans were already afoot to raise the cash.

He said: "We have organised a four-course meal for 100 people in the church hall later this month to try to raise the money to buy the much-needed fridge-freezer.

"About a dozen people from the church service team will cook the food at home and keep it warm in slow cookers at the church hall.

"It will be the first meal prepared in our new kitchen and we hope it will be a roaring success."

Mr Skipsey is gauging support around the Cockerton area for the luncheon club and plans to speak to other churches with a view to putting together a joint initiative.

He added: "Having a brand new kitchen is a tremendous advantage. We may join together with Holy Family and St Mary's to find out what the need is amongst their members as well as the community."

The fundraising meal in Cockerton Methodist church hall is planned for Saturday, March 24. For more details about the event or the luncheon club, contact Mr Skipsey on 01325 351665.