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Basingstoke branch celebrates 90 years since charity began
MEMBERS of a Basingstoke branch of a charity celebrating an incredible milestone marked the occasion with cake, singing and a visit from the borough mayor.
Around 20 members of the Open Sight Basingstoke branch gathered in Kempshott village hall to celebrate the 90th anniversary.
Chairman Angeline Huntley, who has been involved with the group since 1962, said it helps its members by organising social events, get-togethers and sorting out drivers for members who need help with transport.
Mrs Huntley, 71, from the Berg Estate, in Basingstoke, said: “We organise a lot of different events that people can come along to and meet new people.”
Open Sight, based in Eastleigh, works with people in Hampshire who have developed, or who are at risk of developing, sight loss, providing a range of services to assist sight-impaired people to adapt and manage their lives.
Long-time member of the Basingstoke group, 79-year-old Mavis McMath, said the support she receives from the friends she has made there has been incredible.
Mrs McMath, who has wet age-related macular degeneration and is blind in one eye, said: “You couldn’t get a better club. The amount of love that greets you when you walk through the door is unbelievable.”
Borough mayor Councillor Martin Biermann said he was thrilled to be attending the celebration.
He added: “It is a fantastic group and I am very pleased to be here to celebrate with them.”