Attic hoard well used by group for lockdown arts and crafts

CERTIFICATES were presented to members of The Busy Bees – a group of adults with learning disabilities – for an array of crafts they created during lockdown.

From collages to bees, items made out of home-made clay, to sunflowers made with hand cut-outs and drawings, about 15 people took part in the activities.

Many of the ideas, and a lot of the items used, came from outreach support worker Viv Torode, who said that she was something of a hoarder and had kept things in her attic that she thought might one day be useful.

These included old VHS video tape boxes, in which she cut two openings with a soldering iron and then got the service users to decorate them before they were used as tissue dispensers.

It was lockdown that had started her off on her craft project, she said, since during that time everyone was stuck in their home and unable to take part in their usual activities.

A party was held at Le Grand Courtil, St Martin’s, where many of those who had taken part took their work along and enjoyed a slice of celebratory cake as well as receiving a certificate for their efforts.

‘I’ve always been interested in arts and crafts,’ said Mrs Torode. ‘And I encourage each and every person I support individually to start a new hobby and learn new things.’

Even some of the service users who were reluctant to take part ended up producing something, she said, from a pencil drawing to a collage of printed word puzzles.

Every participant also made a bee out of an old toilet roll centre, and these were stuck on a crafted hive, paper flowers were created to go into a garden, and clay made from cornflower, PVA glue and baby oil was used to craft signs and ornaments.

And a newcomer to sewing had created full-sized dresses as well as dressing several dolls.

Outreach support worker Viv Torode, centre, whose attic produced a lot of the raw materials for the projects, with Ryan Ozanne, left, with his accordion, and John Belloeil with his guitar. (28823917)

John Belloeil had made a food-lover’s collage of images and a guitar, which he put together from a cardboard tube and a plastic detergent bottle.

‘I’m going to take it to church on Sunday morning,’ he said, adding that his favourite guitarist was Eric Clapton.

Another musical instrument was made by Ryan Ozanne, who used two old shoe boxes to create an accordion.

He had also made a ‘stay safe’ message out of the home-made clay and stuck it on a small decorated box.

Mrs Torode said she would be continuing to encourage the service users to carry on crafting and regular gatherings were being held at the outreach centre, Jessant in the Rohais.

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