Residents at Great Alne Park knit nearly 100 items for the labour ward at local hospital

Members of the ‘Knit and Natter’ group at Great Alne Park retirement village have been knitting baby clothing and blankets to help newborns at University Hospital in Coventry.

‘Knit and Natter’ is a weekly group for residents at Great Alne Park retirement community, which is owned by later living provider Inspired Villages, in Great Alne, Warwickshire. Each week, residents meet up to chat and knit, many of whom have not picked up knitting needles in years.

For the past few months, the group has been working on a special project for University Hospital in Coventry, knitting nearly 100 pieces of baby clothing and blankets for the Labour Ward.  The wool material helps keep newborn babies warm, which is particularly helpful for preventing admission to the Neonatal Unit. The group particularly focused on knitting clothing and blankets of appropriate size for premature babies as parents often don’t have small enough items straight away.  

Michelle Cooper, a Ward Sister for the Labour Ward at Coventry Hospital, was invited to Great Alne Park on Wednesday to collect the items and enjoy an afternoon tea with the group.

Michelle commented: “We all appreciate these donations as midwives because it keeps the babies warm and prevents admission to the Neonatal Unit. The parents also love it because it’s a beautiful keepsake, especially for how tiny their babies were.”

The ‘Knit and Natter’ group plan to continue their weekly meetings and keep knitting more baby items for the hospital.

Celia Everard, a resident at Great Alne Park, added: “This project has been good fun. It’s got people knitting who haven’t done in a long while, and as we’ve come out of lockdown, it’s been a good way to make friends.”

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