A LETTER A DAY KEEPS THE BLUES AWAY

Each week we bring you a good news story from across the South West as part of our wedNEWSday articles

Dursley Diamonds Walking Netball Club was set up in January 2017 by Honorary Life Member Gilly Salter. Having attended Rednock School in Dursley where she was inspired to play netball, and having stayed in touch with some of her early inspirational coaches/players/friends from school,  Gilly thought it would be great to reunite everyone, give something back and encourage a new group to form a walking netball club to run out of her former school.

Right from the outset Gilly was thrilled to see old school friends and other new players immediately sign up and one of these was Gwen Frost (ne; Kinery).  At school Gwen was your typical all-rounder, great at every sport, and a loveable caring individual who was liked by everyone.  Gwen played in every team in virtually every sport, and inevitably her path crossed with Gilly as both were netball crazy, and although Gwen was a year older at school, (Gilly just wanted to get that one in ) , both ended up playing in the same team.

Fast forward 40 plus years it came as no surprise that Gwen willing signed up, and even came up with the name Dursley Diamonds, believing that all members were diamonds in her book. 

As the club attracted new members, Gwen began to take on the role of a club organiser, setting up a variety of events for the members to attend. These have included attending an auction dinner evening, setting up a Carly Taylor fund-raising initiative , and has even held two amazing events in her own back garden , one in the summer where her husband Jerry, and one of her son’s did all the BBQ cooking ,  and the most recent one at Christmas.

As club captain, a role that she naturally fell into, Gwen took on organising all the lists of members who play in a variety of festivals, tournaments and fixtures, that’s no easy task with three teams on the go and writes the most humorous write up’s on the clubs page which has generated much laughter and banter.

With the announcement from England Netball to suspend walking netball until further notice, Gwen immediately jumped into action writing a blog to our group, knowing this would impact hugely on some of our members who live for these nights out. Here is a snippet of what she had to say:-

“Well CV -19 has taken away the end of our season but it will never take away our friendships and support for each other . As a club we have made huge progress this season fielding three teams but more important we welcomed some wonderful new members who have enhanced our club through ability and companionship. I’m not sure when we will all get together again but I’m looking forward to it already – perhaps a social at my house to celebrate. I’m praying that all our families and friends stay well during this difficult time.

Since writing this and since the lock down has been announced for our more vulnerable groups, Gwen has taken it up on herself to write a letter a day to keep the blues away to each member of our group.  Three letters have already been received, with all members sharing how wonderful it’s made them feel.

In a world that needs compassion and love right now, Gwen Frost just can’t give enough.  So on behalf of our lovely ladies at Dursley Diamonds Walking Netball Club, Gwen we want you to know that  “Diamonds are a Girls Best Friend and that friend is you” . Thank you for being there for all of us.

If you have a good news story that you would like to share please send your story and a picture to Laura Woodruff (southwest@englandnetball.co.uk)