PENSIONERS across Keighley were able to celebrate VE Day with afternoon tea thanks to Big Local volunteers.

The team delivered 320 teas as well as hosting an event for 50 people in Woodhouse near their Covid-19 operations base. Big Local coordinator Shaun O’Hare said: “It was a great volunteer effort, well-organised and with a smile.”

The teas were prepared at the base, the Hainworth Wood Community Centre, by five volunteers who twice a week prepare, cook and deliver meals to many vulnerable residents.

The volunteers – sisters Kelly and Tracey Turner, Dyan Ryan, Donna Beveridge and teenager Ellie Merrit – are known as Ma Kelly and the Dinner Ladies. They were joined in the kitchen on VE Day by Keighley MP Robbie Moore.

Funded by Big Local , the team prepared all 320 afternoon teas and send them out with complementary copies of the Keighley News to older residents.

Residents from Bracken Bank, Oakworth and Woodhouse donated baking, and there were also donations from Morrison’s, Clarkes Chip Shop, Caesars Pizzas and Andy’s Shop.

Meanwhile, a VE Day party was organised for residents of the nearby Denby Road sheltered housing complex after Pauline Marshall, a Denby Road resident of 17 years, asked for help.

Big Local arranged for Keighley singing duo Adele & Renato to set up in the middle of the street to sing nostalgic songs, starting with We’ll Meet Again and ending with You’ll Never Walk Alone..

Shaun said: “They sang a tribute to the oldest resident Dennis, who is 105 years young. There was an amazing atmosphere, with residents enjoying the show from gardens and doorsteps.”

Pauline collected £300 for Manorlands.

Shaun added “We need to give huge thanks to the volunteers who run Hainworth Wood Community Centre week-in week-out, most of whom are shielding during the lockdown. The centre is currently closed to all but voluntary efforts such as the foodbank.

“All the activities we deliver are based from the building on Hainworth Wood Road, and I’d encourage residents to make more use of this community resource when government guidance allows.”