Local residents from across the Meriden constituency turned out to celebrate the ‘Great Get Together’, a new national celebration designed to tackle loneliness and build stronger communities.
The event, which was started by Brendan Cox, husband of the late Jo Cox MP who was murdered in her constituency last year, was celebrated in style at the Three Trees Centre in Chelmsley Wood and was organised by local MP, Dame Caroline Spelman.
The event saw residents, local charities, community leaders and borough councillors come together for cake, coffee and a chat - with members of the public travelling from Monkspath, Hampton in Arden and Castle Bromwich to join in the fun.
Dame Caroline, who was inspired to hold a Get Together in memory of Jo, said, ‘I would like to extend my sincere thanks to everyone who attended the Get Together to celebrate all that makes our local community great and to pay tribute to the work of my late colleague, Jo Cox.
‘In remembering Jo, her husband Brendan, who founded the Jo Cox Foundation in her name, had asked that the UK makes the Great Get Together an event to celebrate all that we have in common and to tackle important issues like loneliness, of which Jo was a real champion’.
‘That is why I am delighted to have welcomed people from all backgrounds to Chelmsley Wood to join in the fun, and would like to express my thanks to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau and The Haven Breast Cancer Charity for attending the event, but also the John Lewis Community Scheme ‘Community Matters’ who also join us and donated much of the furniture to the Three Trees Centre following its recent refurbishment’.
Around 50 people joined in the fun and the event raised £75.58 which will be donated to three local charities, Welcome, which helps tackle substance abuse in Solihull, The Haven, a new Breast Cancer support service in Solihull and The Three Trees Community Centre.
The MP added, ‘In making this event free to attend, I wanted to ensure that anyone from our community was able to come along and join in the fun or meet with some of the local charities who came to showcase the work they do supporting the community.
‘Nevertheless, I welcome the generosity of the guests who donated money to support local causes and am delighted to be able to pass on their contributions to three excellent local charitable organisations’.