Welcome to the vibrant world of the Stockport Afternoon Flower Club, where blossoms meet banter, and every petal tells a story.
The Stockport Afternoon Flower Club, with its roots tracing back 53 years, stands as a testament to the enduring power of shared passions and floral creativity.
Nestled in the heart of Woodley Civic Hall, this charming group of floral enthusiasts is more than just a gathering—it’s a community where friendships bloom and laughter is the best way to help the flowers grow.
Stockport Afternoon Flower Club
With about 50 members, this club is like a secret garden of friendship and camaraderie.
Led by the green-thumbed enthusiasts, these monthly meetings are about arranging flowers and cultivating connections.
Cultivating Community Through Blooms
The Stockport Afternoon Flower Club sprouted from the seed of inspiration over five decades ago.
The club has evolved over the years, changing venues and welcoming a diverse group of members, currently boasting a friendly community of 41 members.
We spoke to the secretary of the club, Christie, who reflected on the club’s origin, “It started because a few ladies got together who attended flower arranging classes. Arranging had become all the rage in the early ’70s, and they wanted to start their own flower club.
“There was a huge fad of Japanese inspired flower arranging, and it’s just grown from there really.”
A Blooming Resilience during COVID-19
The pandemic threatened to close the petals of the club, but the members proved resilient.
Thanks to a tech-savvy member, they embraced virtual meetings with demonstrators and teachers. Far from withering, the club actually gained new members during the lockdown, a rarity in a time when many other groups faced challenges.
Christie shares, “We thought we might have to close, but thanks to one of our members who was a bit more technical minded than the rest of us, we had Zoom meetings with demonstrators, and we went from strength to strength. We actually gained more members during COVID. We’re very pleased about that.”
Blooms for a Cause: Charity and Community Engagement
The Stockport Afternoon Flower Club doesn’t just arrange flowers; they arrange opportunities to give back.
Beyond the beauty of their floral displays, the club actively participates in events that raise funds for charities.
From assisting hospices to contributing to community festivals, the club’s impact on the local area goes beyond petals and stems.
Christie highlights their involvement, “We help other charities to raise money. This month, we are doing Bramall, raising money for the community.
“We’re doing a Christmas tree for Hyde Chapel, raising money for their church.
“We assist hospices like Willow Wood Hospice and St. Ann’s Hospice in their fundraising efforts.”
Cultivating Wellbeing Through Flowers
Beyond the community impact, Christie emphasises the positive impact of flower arranging on mental health.
“Flowers make everybody smile. There is an awful lot of satisfaction in doing arrangements. Flowers are inherently beautiful and make people feel good. It’s great for your mental health.”
She recognised that a lot of the members were retirees, and added that the benefits of people who are a bit older in getting out and about, and being social, are massive.
While the majority are ladies, the club has welcomed a few gentlemen into its fold.
The demographic, as Christie describes, “tends to be post-retirement people.” This deliberate inclusivity plays a vital role in enriching the lives of older members.
“It allows them to remain valued members of the community because they can share their talents to enhance the local area, raise money for charity, and make these beautiful arrangements.
“Having said that, we’re always on the lookout for members, and younger members too!
“Honestly, arranging is for everyone, who isn’t instantly cheered up by flowers?”
So, if your Mondays need a sprinkle of floral delight, mark your calendar for the last Monday afternoon of each month (except for August and December), and join this merry band of floral enthusiasts at 2:00 pm at Woodley Civic Hall.
In May it’s on the third Monday because of the bank holiday.
It’s not just a meeting; it’s a floral fiesta!
You can find out more by visiting their Facebook page by clicking here