The Group

“Well, yes or no?” Back in March 2020, my friends and I were discussing whether we should meet or not, in view of the news we were hearing about the virus. We decided to go for the safe option and close our clubs until things were better.
Many clubs had to close. Of course they did. But closing our organisation meant depriving people of a lifeline, for we are a club for single people. Our members are aged 50+ and for many of them, the lockdowns have meant not just being unable to see family members but their full social lives suddenly ended.
We were meeting in Horsham, Burgess Hill, Worthing, Lewes and Brighton, and had 100’s of activities. Suddenly all of this stopped.
Many families may have been indoors with peope who were not always great company and no doubt for many it has been a terrible time, but when a single person doesn’t go out, they don’t see anybody. And that is what has been difficult for unattached folks.
We, the members of our club, at least had each other. Some single people don’t have that. During lockdown, we have had some trips to National Trust gardens, socially distanced, the occasional carefully planned walk with a friend, but very little of the mixing that our busy members have been used to.
We’ve been going for 14 years and have over 300 members, enjoying dinners, theatre, golf, galleries, pub evenings and holidays; just about anything a member decides to organise, and many close friendships have been formed.
Thank goodness for facebook and whatsapp, phone and email. They have kept us in contact, engaged and involved and reminded us how good our lives were and what we can look forward to when all this is over.
We started The Group back in 2006 to bring people together. We’re longing to be doing that again.
Tricia Bentley
www.thegroup.org.uk
The Group – a club for unattached men and women, aged 50+

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