Determined Olive Duffield is back behind the counter at her favourite charity shop – a year after breaking her pelvis. The long-serving East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) volunteer, 82, was forced to take a year out after suffering her injury in early 2021. She also had a bout of shingles but was always determined to return to the shop in Long Stratton. She has been a regular fixture there for more than a quarter of a century and started volunteering in early 1995, working at the former shop that raised funds for the old Quidenham hospice.
Now she is back where she belongs, dutifully giving up two hours a week every Friday morning. “I’m as good as I’m going to be,” joked Olive, referring to her recent brushes with injury and illness. I never thought about not coming back – it was always something I wanted to do. I wanted to get back in the shop as soon as possible because it’s something I’ve always enjoyed. I don’t get to see many people so enjoy the chance to chat with customers. It gets me out and I like the sense of helping others. The more money we take the better, because of the charity we’re supporting. I’ve known many of our customers for years and seen children grow up, now coming into the shop with their own little ones. There have been so many changes but it’s something I continue to enjoy and would recommend to anyone.”
South Norfolk Council’s Leisure Centre in Long Stratton has achieved a rating of ‘excellent’ from Quest – the industry’s go-to scheme for quality assurance.
The assessment focussed on the Leisure Centre’s recovery from the pandemic and its ongoing Covid-19 security measures. A range of areas were put under the spotlight including cleanliness and hygiene, how effectively the Centre was managed, the customer experience and community engagement.
South Norfolk Councillor Alison Thomas, Cabinet member for Better Lives, said: "The team at Long Stratton Leisure Centre have worked extremely hard to keep our customers safe during this pandemic and its fantastic they have received this top accreditation as recognition. It’s also an assurance to all our customers that they can continue to keep fit and healthy in a Covid-secure environment.”
South Norfolk Council’s leisure centres are offering free online gym membership until 1 March, allowing members access to more than 30 live streamed classes and more than 60 on demand classes.
By signing up to Your Home Workout, members can try a range of professional classes, from energetic Dance Fit, Body Pump and High Intensity Interval Training to Yoga and Pilates, free of charge, and then for just £10 a month after 1 March.
An online class timetable, for those wanting to join in live, is on the South Norfolk Council website – search ‘Your Home Workout from the homepage to view it and see what you’d like to try.
South Norfolk Council’s Leisure Team have recently launched a brand-new YouTube channel to help residents keep fit and active during lockdown.
The Council’s 3 Leisure Centres in Diss, Wymondham and Long Stratton were forced to close in March, but the team have been busy creating free content to help inspire residents to try new ways of exercising and keep fit at home.
Over the coming weeks, the team will post Pilates, Yoga, HIIT workouts and much more on their South Norfolk Leisure channel.
Thousands of people enjoyed the best of what South Norfolk has to offer at South Norfolk Council’s biggest show of the year on Sunday.
The Council’s HQ in Long Stratton was packed with people enjoying the fantastic entertainment, children’s activities and local food and craft stalls.
This is the eighth year that the Council has promoted its services through a spectacular day of entertainment for all the family.