Volunteers knitting to decorate Donaster for the Tour de Yorkshire

Enthusiastic pensioners are making sure Doncaster will look good during the Tour de Yorkshire – with their knitting needles.

By David Kessen
Thursday, 28 March, 2019, 08:26

Dedicated volunteers at a church drop-in centre are creating bunting that will help decorate the route of the race when it passes through the borough on May 2.

Lena Parker, aged 92, has created a pattern for a mini woolen cycle vest, and her colleagues at the Renew 127 centre on Askern Road, are running their own knitting production line to bash them out.

Volunteers Lena Parker and Linda Williamson, pictured are busy Crochet and knitting Tour De Yorkshire themed decorations. Picture: NDFP-26-03-19-Renew-4

They’re being attached to string to make bunting which will hang in the shop window.

The shop, a former betting shop which has been converted to a drop-in centre by Bentley Baptist Church, is one of dozens of locations across the borough who are getting into the spirit of the cycle race to decorate the route.

It are also one of a number of venues who have been given a micro-grant by Doncaster Council to help with the decorations.

The bunting, knitted out of blue and yellow wool, is part of the decor, along with cloth flags made by volunteers at the site, and an old bike, which will be painted yellow, which was donated by a rag and bone man. Another volunteer, Pauline Fuller, is making a model bike out of cardboard tubing.

Jessie Spencer, Anne Gosling, Host, Linda Williamson, volunteer, Farrell Clifford, Lena Parker, volunteer, Fred Wallett and Annette Morris, volunteer, pictured, outside the Renew Centre. Picture: NDFP-26-03-19-Renew-2

Renew 127 provides a venue for people to drop in for tea and biscuits. They aim to help people who are lonely or have health problems, by providing a venue to meet people or to sit. 

Lena is enjoying her role in getting the town ready for the cycle race.

She said: “I come here on Tuesdays, and we’ve been knitting the bunting for three weeks now. We’ve got 27 little jerseys up so far, with about another 50 ready, and we’re still doing more.. We may put some up on the church too if we’ve got any left.

“I’ve been knitting all my life, so I've had plenty of practice.

Anne Gosling, Host, pictured hanging up Tour de Yorkshire themed bunting. Picture: NDFP-26-03-19-Renew-3

“I think its a great thing that we’ve got the race coming past – it will get people out.”

Helping her knit were fellow volunteers Judith Smith and Linda Williamson. Judith said: “I’ll be coming here for the race – I think it will look amazing.”

Anne Gosling, who runs the Tuesday session at the centre, said they would be putting a table on the pavement for people to sit outside on the day, and would be opening up the toilets to the public as a facility.

“We will have the display up from the middle of April, so its there for a couple of weeks,” she said. We’re really looking forward to it.”