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Closure threat to Acle playgroup

PUBLISHED: 12:18 17 June 2010 | UPDATED: 18:03 30 June 2010

A village play and toy group has issued a “use it or lose it” plea after the numbers of children using it has fallen dramatically in the last 18 months.

A village play and toy group has issued a “use it or lose it” plea after the numbers of children using it has fallen dramatically in the last 18 months.

The Acle Girls, Boys and Lots of Toys Play Club only has five youngsters playing with a wide range of toys every Monday at the Acle Recreation Centre with their parents.

The scenes are in stark contrast to a year and half ago when up to 18 children aged under five could be seen enjoying themselves.

Organisers of the not-for-profit group say that the economic downturn has led to parents going back to work to make ends meet - meaning they cannot take part in the fun sessions, which have included a bouncy castle, play dough and a make-believe corner.

If no more children attend the sessions, then organisers Racheal Wright and Jackie Allman will pull the plug on them as they cannot continue to contribute to the running of the group themselves.

The organisers also think that grandparents may be put off taking their children to the friendly play group as they might be nervous at not knowing anyone there.

Mrs Wright, whose two young children Charlotte and Devan love going to the play club, said: “Because of the financial situation, people are being forced to go back to work, so they cannot come here and bring their children.

“The play club is a safe, relaxed environment where children can play while their parents or grandparents can have a cup of tea and talk to other adults.”

Anyone interested in attending the play club can visit its Monday sessions at the Acle Recreation Centre from 10.30am to 12.30pm. It costs £3 for the first child and 50p for every other child aged over one.

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