Village’s BATS keep busy at base with lots of exciting activities

Children at the Babies and Toddlers Group at Lumbutts Methodist Chapel.

Children at the Babies and Toddlers Group at Lumbutts Methodist Chapel.

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If you are around Lumbutts village on some days, it’s highly likely you might see some bats...

That is, the Babies and Toddlers Group (BATS), which meet at Lumbutts church each Tuesday and use it as a base for a number of activities.

The group, who have been saddened by news that the church is set to close later on this year, believe as many people as possible should use it, to show what an excellent venue it is.

Joan Walsh, whose grand-daughter attends the group and who has run cooking sessions at the group for the last two years, said it was super venue.

“We need people to use the building. It’s for hire and we want people to come on a social basis. It’s been wonderful for us and a lot of new babies are coming in, pre-school,” she said.

Starting from half a dozen babies, toddlers and their parents, the numbers have more than tripled recently, to take part in a range of activities.

These include arts and crafts, Joan’s cookery sessions, story time and play.

Joan said: “In the cookery seassions the children and their parents make their own bread and pizzas. The children and mothers take part in activities they can do together. There is lots of play and lots of constructive things and it’s a great asset to the area. It’s a wonderful thing.”

In some of the school holiday weeks special activities are part of things. For example, the Jo Jingles dance team ran a session for the group, they have been entertained by a magician and went on a trip to Animal Quackers centre at nearby Bacup, among other things.

Last month it was announced by the Methodist Church that Lumbutts was “almost certain” to close later on this year, with Old Town Methodist Church set to hold its final service this Sunday, August 18. Rev Tony Buglass, retiring as Superintendent Minister of the Upper Valley Circuit, said the church had known for a long time it had too many buildings for the number of people and the changing community it had.