Tea, cakes and good company were all in plentiful supply when a new group offering friendship to older people enjoyed its first outing in Ellon.
Contact the Elderly organises scores of afternoon tea parties up and down the country each Sunday but this was the inaugural event in the town.
And the party proved such a success, being supported so strongly by local volunteers, that a second Ellon group could now be brewing.
The aim of the charity’s parties is to ease loneliness for members of the older generation who live alone and may be feeling socially isolated.
They are held once a month and provide an opportunity to enjoy a couple of hours of companionship over a cuppa with a small group of guests.
The gatherings usually take place in a local host’s home and guests are chauffeured door-to-door by volunteer drivers, eliminating transport worries, particularly for those who find it difficult to get out and about.
Local resident Carla Robertson hosted the first Ellon tea party and an invitation has gone out to more potential guests to join the party.
Contact the Elderly development officer Denise Robson said: “Carla put on a great spread and everyone had a really lovely afternoon out.
“When we first appealed for people to support an Ellon group I was confident that local residents would come forward but we’ve had such a great response from volunteers that we’d be delighted to expand and start another group.
“It’s just such a simple concept – a catch-up over a cuppa – but it can have such a transformative effect on the life of an older person who doesn’t get that much chance to socialise.
“And because it is not an onerous time-consuming activity, volunteers can really see what a big difference just a small contribution can make.”
The charity would love to hear from any potential guests themselves or from anyone who knows someone who might enjoy an afternoon out in some lively company.
Additional volunteers are also required before a second group can be developed.
Anyone interested in finding out more about being a guest or volunteer with Contact the Elderly should contact Denise at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone her on 01542 285010 or visit www.contact-the-elderly.org.