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Incredible Public Response To National Lottery Funded Warm Space Activities At The Torch

A brand-new programme of free events at the Torch Theatre called A Warm Space at the Torch received incredible response from the Pembrokeshire community. At the end of the project over 30 events were provided across 12 weeks, with many over- subscribed, the activities couldn’t have been more popular.

“It's always a risk trying something new, and this was a bit of a departure for us (as was some of the activity for our participants), but together we have gone on an amazing journey and really made a difference to people's mental health and wellbeing, including our incredible team,” explained Tim Howe, Senior Manger Youth and Community at the Torch.

“We wanted to throw open our doors and welcome in as many new faces as possible. I think it worked because we went into it with no expectations - we just wanted to make sure people knew there was something there for them,” he added.

The weekly sessions held from January to March were incredibly well attended and included chair yoga, art, Welsh language drama classes and a book club aimed for the over 50’s and made possible thanks to funding from the National Lottery Community Fund.

As the project concludes the Torch has been gathering feedback which has been overwhelmingly positive with one participant saying that it, “Gave me a reason to get up early and out of my house. I have a sense of agoraphobia and often stay indoors for days on end if I don't have a solid reason to be elsewhere.” Another added: “The sessions had provided me with a much-needed lifeline coupled with a sense of purpose and belonging.”

However, all good things must come to an end.

“The only complaint is that people are sad it's all over and I couldn't agree more!” added Tim.

He continued: “We were so lucky to receive the support of the National Lottery’s Community Fund who covered the cost of all this activity. Sponsorship such as this from trusts, foundations and corporate sponsors is vital in ensuring that members of our community continue to have access to high quality creative activity right here in Pembrokeshire. You too can be part of that by becoming a member or making a one-off donation or providing corporate sponsorship – we’re always looking for people and companies to support our next exciting engagement activity!”

Tim concluded: “The Torch Theatre would like to thank all the incredible Pembrokeshire professionals who led the sessions - Bethan Jones, Chris Prosser and Freya Dare, without whom we would not have been able to provide such an exciting range of activities. We have learnt so much from offering this provision about what people in our community want and need. We've got lots of ambitious plans afoot so watch this space.”

Photo credit: Media to Motion


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