Knitting a community together
21 November 2018 | North East England
From worry monsters to trauma teddies, how one group of ladies mend hearts.
Whether it's "yarn bombing" stations or knitting teddies for traumatised kids, The Nunthorpe and Marton Knitters strive to help their community using skills few can replicate.
And the group doesn't only produce excellent results from their efforts, but also a sense of community spirit and the fact everyone - young or old - is welcome to join in.
Brenda Thompson, who helped to set up the group, said: "We do knitting for the community, we do it for good causes.
"We knit toys for the Police and Crime Commissioner - trauma toys which police can keep in the back of their car and give to children who have been in accidents.
"We make worry monsters for local schools, which have a pocket where children can write down their worries without saying them out loud.
"We knit for care bags at the James Cook University Hospital."
Brenda added in total they have knitted around 350 toys - and she currently has bags waiting to be donated.
Most recently, the group have knitted 50 hedgehogs and a huge poppy display in Nunthorpe. But she added the community spirit is an incredibly important element to their gatherings.
She said: "I used to work as a ward councillor and I thought I met a lot of people - but nothing compared with who I've met through knitting.
"I've met people from all walks of life - children, the elderly, those with health problems.
"We have knitting going on nearly every day. We knit on busses. Everyone wants to know what you are doing when you get your knitting out in public."
She added everyone and anyone is welcome to the knitting groups - and some simply like to be involved in the spirit by knitting at home.
They also have smaller groups which can help combat those suffering from social exclusion by visiting them at home and they carry out work across Middlesbrough with disabled children and young adults.
She added: "There's a feeling of community. Everything we knit, we knit with love and I think that comes across."