Group of Park Ward residents unite to open new People’s Park cafe after former site closes

Park Ward Together at People's Park

Group of Park Ward residents unite to open new People’s Park cafe after former site closes

Community group Park Ward Together have united to open a cafe at the Bowls Club on People’s Park following the closure of the former NAViGO site.

Run entirely on a voluntary basis, the cafe is open on Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays from 10am until 2pm.

The Park Ward Together community group was established in 2019 to address concerns on anti-social behaviour in the area.

During the first Covid-19 lockdown, the members did shopping and prescription pick-ups and deliveries for residents in the area who were unable to do so. They also delivered food parcels and carried out repairs for people who needed it.

Founder Bill Geer said: “Where we are now, we’ve had lockdown for the best part of a year. I think people were feeling despondent. People were coming out to walk their dogs but not talking to each other and not socialising, because they weren’t allowed to.

“They wanted to feel a sense of normality. I think when you’re out in the park, you need somewhere where you can get a cup of tea. We’re local residents and we thought we could help other local residents by providing the facility.”

Debbie Woodward, a Park Ward resident and member of the group, said: “We’ve got the jewel in the crown here in Grimsby. It’s a fantastic park. Whilst we’re encouraging people to come out and make good use of green open spaces as we come out of lockdown and so forth, there also needs to be something that makes it an experience for people.

“For me, it was very much about making sure people had something to come to, something to enjoy. I think everybody’s had it really hard over the last year. They’ve been isolated and it’s impacted on people’s mental health, so it’s really just an opportunity to come together safely, have a little chat, meet new people in the area, and maybe form friendships and support longer term.”

The Park Ward Together group can be found on Facebook here.


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