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Children's arts and craft club to continue after successful trial

PUBLISHED: 09:33 08 January 2016 | UPDATED: 11:04 08 January 2016

The Crafty Little Tinkers group in the scout hut, Mulbarton. The group was started up by Kat Gant (left) and Laura Tink (right) for local children to enjoy some messy play.

The Crafty Little Tinkers group in the scout hut, Mulbarton. The group was started up by Kat Gant (left) and Laura Tink (right) for local children to enjoy some messy play.

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2016

A new arts and crafts club is taking off in the county, after passing a trial period with flying colours.

Crafty Little Tinkers is a Mulbarton-based club, set up by mums Laura Tink and Kat Gant, which gives children up to five years old the chance to express themselves, explore and get messy.

The pair started the group in September, having felt that such a service was hard to come by in their area, with the original plan for it to be ran as a trial until Christmas.

However, after an overwhelming response from mums, the group will now continue to meet.

Miss Tink, 31, a mother-of-two, said: “I had been working at a shop in the village, but after I went on maternity leave after my second child, I decided I didn’t want to go back to stacking shelves, and I’ve always been arty, so came up with the idea,”

Mrs Gant, 27, added: “The village had been crying out for a messy play group so when Laura suggested we set up a group I was really enthusiastic.”

The group, which takes place every Thursday, presents children with a variety of play-based learning opportunities, designed to fit with the Crafty Little Tinkers motto of ‘Play, Explore, Imagine, Create’.

Mrs Gant, who has a three-year-old son, said: “Crafty Little Tinkers is all about presenting opportunities for the children to explore and develop their senses. These opportunities are so important for children at this age.”

Miss Tink added: “As well as all the playing, we also finish every session with a sing-song and a wind down, so children can get used to the type of structure they will get when they start pre-school.”

The pair have seen the groups grow in size over the past few months, now welcoming more than 30 children to each session, as well as holding monthly Saturday sessions and offering birthday parties.

Miss Tink said: “We were worried Mulbarton wouldn’t be big enough for this to take off, but we have people coming from as far away as Norwich, Great Yarmouth and Wymondham, among other places.”

Carly Wisdom, 35, who takes her 18-month-old son to the groups, said: “My son absolutely loves anything messy, so this is really brilliant.

“It’s lovely having a space I can take him to do all the messy things he loves, without having to clean up afterwards.”

Suzanne Larke, 41, who brings her two children, added: “I’ve been coming since the beginning and have come every week since; it’s so much fun, not just for the kids, but for me too – I’ve met so many mums from the area who are now good friends.”

For more information, visit the group’s Facebook page.

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