A NEW community cafe to combat loneliness in Romsey has been hailed as a success.

The first session of the cafe took place on May 4 at Romsey Baptist Church in Bell street from 10am until noon.

Bronwen Clemons, 50, a mission team leader, who has been spearheading the new community group said that the first session “went really well.”

She said: “More than 40 people came along and lots of people said they really enjoyed it and that they were going to tell their friends to come along in the future.

“Mostly older people attended but we did also have some younger people as well which was lovely.”

Guests who attended played games, chatted and enjoyed tea, coffee and cake.

Ms Clemons added: “It definitely had the desired affect.”

She decided to set up the cafe to reach out to local people who may be feeling lonely.

She said: “The aim of the group is to reach out to lonely people, whether that be an elderly person, a single parent or a younger person, anyone and everyone is welcome.

“Weekends can be a really tricky time for people who are feeling lonely so I feel a group like this will be really beneficial for lots of people.”

Town centre manager Mark Edgerley said: “It’s important that we recognise there are people in our community who feel lonely for many different reasons, I very much welcome this initiative by the Romsey Baptist Church to provide a drop-in café for people to spend time in. A safe, non-commercial environment, as they leave the café, we hope they will explore the town a little, perhaps with new friends, to enjoy the wider benefits of living in Romsey.”