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The grange

The Grange

Peggy Brooks, former pupil at the School of Stitchery and Lace, Eloise Appleby, Chief Exec of The Grange Charity and Abbi Williams, current resident at The Grange charity

NEW HERITAGE ROOM SHOWING SURREY CHARITY’S HISTORIC ROYAL CONNECTIONS OPENS TO THE PUBLIC

A new state of the art heritage room, designed to showcase The Grange charity’s historic collection of needlework and its fascinating connection with the royal family has been opened to the public for the first time today.

The new facility, located in The Grange’s Victorian main house in Bookham, has been funded by a £97,500 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and tells the story of the charity’s beginnings as The School of Stitchery and Lace, which was first founded in 1938, to its current role as a charity supporting people with learning disabilities to lead independent lives.

The project has involved carefully preserving the charity’s historic collection of needlework, which includes embroidered items made for the Royal family, photographs, letters and books. There are numerous letters between The School and royal households which give a rare insight into palace life at the time. One of the letters is from Queen Elizabeth’s nurse ordering a copy of a dress and there are also hand-drawn designs for Queen Mary’s nightgowns.

Eloise Appleby, CEO of The Grange charity said: ‘This is a fantastic addition to Surrey’s historical past and a definite high point of our 80th anniversary year. We are delighted that we have been able to use Heritage Lottery funding to create an interactive learning and heritage space open to all visitors. We will use this to build stronger links between the charity and the local community and it will become part of the Bookham Heritage Trail. People we support at The Grange will be involved in running the Heritage Room and we hope that local schools and community groups will make full use of it going forward.’

The Heritage Room will include:
• Exhibits of needlework made for Queen Mary
• Oral histories of former School pupils and staff
• Letters from ladies in waiting commissioning embroidered items
• Vintage photos for the School if Stitchery and Lace
• History of The Grange building
• A collection of books and vintage magazines on needlework

It will receive an official opening from royal patron, HRH The Duke of Gloucester, on 25 September 2018.

For more information visit >>> www.grangecentre.org.uk

£4,000 rasied at 80th anniversary fete

Owls, classic cars and topiary people helps charity raise £4,000 at 80th anniversary fete.

The Grange centre for people with learning disabilities raises over £4,000 at its 80th anniversary fete

The Grange charity which was founded in 1938 as The School of Stitchery and Lace saw hundreds of friends and supporters turn out to celebrate its 80th anniversary fete on Saturday.

Big attractions were the topiary people who were on duty to meet and greet visitors, the classic cars and motorbikes, and Owls To You, a display of four beautiful birds of prey plus stalls music from the Martinau Brass Band.

The fete ended with a mass African drumming workshop with over 100 drums provided by ‘Drum With Us’.

‘Our aim with the fete was to celebrate 80 years of providing care for people with disabilities in Bookham,’ said Grange Chief Executive Eloise Appleby ‘We were delighted that people were so generous.’

The 80th anniversary celebrations continue in Heritage Week on 15 September with the opening of the Heritage Room. The Room will feature textiles made for Queen Mary, letters for royal households and vintage photos.

The Grange is a well-regarded Bookham charity providing care and supported housing and a dynamic programme of skills training for 100 people with physical and learning disabilities. For more information please visit www.grangecentre.org.uk

Pictured below: Mary Anne, Ashley, our CEO Eloise Appleby, Vikky, Jo and Annie from The Grange charity
Group with topiary and EA

The Grange - helping people with learning disabilities

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Royal Wedding at The Grange, Bookham

The photo above shows Anissa, Sophie, Louise, Fliss and Mary Anne who attend Creative arts session at The Grange charity in Bookham.

The students at The Grange were putting together a new window display for Grange@No5 gift shop in Bookham, which sells items made by residents at The Grange and decided to design Meghan’s dress for the Royal Wedding. The dress is made of paper, doilies and picnic plates.

It’s not the first time The Grange has made clothes for the royal family. The charity was founded 80 years ago as ‘The School of Stitchery and Lace’ for young women with physical disabilities who made many items for Queen Mary and even a dress for Queen Elizabeth when she was a young girl.

This week The Grange celebrates its 80th anniversary, The Grange is helping people with learning disabilities live independent and fulfilling lives. For more information please visit >>> www.grangecentre.org.uk

Bookham charity wins lottery funding

BOOKHAM CHARITY WINS £97k HERITAGE LOTTERY FUNDING TO OPEN UP “ROYAL” COLLECTION OF NEEDLEWORK TO THE PUBLIC

The Grange charity for people with learning disabilities in Bookham has won funding worth £97,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to create a heritage room telling the story of its beginnings as ‘The School of Stitchery and Lace’ founded in 1938.

The project will preserve the charity’s historic collection of needlework, which has royal connections, and create a new interactive learning and heritage space open to all visitors.

The collection includes embroidered items and there are numerous letters between The School and the royal household - from Queen Elizabeth’s nurse ordering a copy of a dress to hand-drawn designs for Queen Mary’s nightgowns.

People with disabilities at The Grange will be involved in the set up and running of the project which will build stronger links between the charity and the local community and will become part of the Bookham Heritage Trail.

Gill Caldwell, from The Grange said: “We are delighted to have won this Heritage Lottery funding and very grateful to lottery players. It will allow us to preserve our historic needlework collection for future generations and couldn’t come at a better time as we celebrate our 80th anniversary in 2018. We would love to hear from anyone with memories of The School of Stitchery and Lace and hope people will contact us.

“The grant will enable us to digitise photographs and letters and make flip books that visitors can handle and read at their leisure. There will be headsets for listing to oral histories as well as interactive games. Once set up, the Heritage room will host learning events and community activities. We particularly want to welcome school groups.”

“When The School - now The Grange - opened in our Victorian mansion in Bookham in 1938, its founder, Miss Julia Sweet, became a pioneer in training women with disabilities in skills that would give them an income and independence. We carry on that tradition today.”

The Grange is the only adult care provider in Surrey able to offer accommodation, care and a wide range of skills training all on one site. With a focus on teaching practical and creative arts including needlework, people can develop life and work skills in the charity’s shops, cafes and mini businesses as well as take part in sessions in horticulture, catering, communications, IT, woodwork and creative arts.

Below: Zena, a tenant of The Grange, with a nightdress case made for Queen Mary
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The Grange works with people with disabilities, helping them to lead independent and fulfilling lives by offering residential care and supported living. For more information about its work, please visit our website at: www.grangecentre.org.uk

The Grange, Surrey’s leading charity providing services to people with learning disabilities

Catering group

The Grange in final push to complete Lifting Expectations Appeal to fund a major refurbishment



The Grange, Surrey’s leading charity providing services to people with learning disabilities, is seeking a final £145,000 to complete a major refurbishment.

Already it has raised £475,000 which will help create spaces for 25 new people, enabling them to learn essential skills for the workplace.
The project will deliver a larger IT suite, two extra rooms for skills training and activities, and a Heritage Room telling the story of The Grange, dating back to 1938 in Great Bookham. Then it was The School of Stitchery & Lace for young disabled girls whose work included embroidery for the Royal Family.

The refurb will involve levelling the upstairs floors and widening all corridors for the 15 wheelchair users. Also new will be a lift and automatic doors allowing people to move around more freely.

“This is a fantastic project,” says CEO Sally Lines OBE. “And, if we can get the last £145,000, it will make a huge difference as it will mean we can do the refurbishment in one go and more quickly and economically than if we had to stop and start again.

“The Lifting Expectations Appeal will create 96 new sessions every week, including growing and selling plants; catering for and serving in our two cafes; crafting wooden planters and bird boxes; doing every kind of art and craft activity, and mini experiences like fudge-making and book order fulfilment.

“It’s very sad – some would say a scandal – that people with learning disabilities have the highest rate of unemployment in the UK - over 90%. But we can change that by helping them to build self-esteem and skills and to find work experience or paid employment.”

For more information please visit www.grangecentre.org.uk