Washington - Down Your Way

Andy Bell with members of the Rotary Club of Washington.
Andy Bell with members of the Rotary Club of Washington.
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Karen Peet has not only lost a massive 145 lbs in three years she has changed her whole life around. She joined Weight Watchers in very poor health, suffering from pulmonary embolism in her lung, diabetes, high cholesterol and unable to walk very far. She decided to attend classes in the library in Washington town centre and having now lost more than 10 stone is well on her way to achieving her target weight. She can also now enjoy walking her dog and looking after her grandchild, the latest addition to her family. The final piece of good news is that after being unable to find work for a number of years she now has a job she loves. Karen is a great inspiration to the group. Weight Watchers classes are held at 5.45pm in St Andrews Church, Concord, or Wednesdays at 9.45am or 11.15am in the town centre library in The Galleries. Lorna Parker, the class leader, can be contacted on 07533069369 for more information about classes.

A meeting took place on Monday to finalise plans for the Washington Carnival, which will be held from 10am to 4pm on September 17. Washington Arts Centre host its annual beer festival from August 25 to 29. There will be real ales, food and live music.

Karen Peet before and after her 10 stone weight loss, which she has achieved with the help of her Weight Watchers class.

Karen Peet before and after her 10 stone weight loss, which she has achieved with the help of her Weight Watchers class.

The arts centre summer mix for children continues tomorrow between 10am and noon. Painting and drawing session take place with artist Vince Cooper.

Washington Town Centre Library has an opportunity for kids to create a flip book, based on Roald Dahl’s The witches. The session takes place on Thursday between 2.15pm and 3.15pm, led by artist Laura Smith.

Washington Millenium Library hosts Make A Crocodile Cup session, based on Roald Dahl’s The Enormous Crocodile, on Monday, August 22, between 2.30pm and 3.30pm.

At Washington Wetlands you can walk with a warden on a guided tour of the site, meet at reception at 2pm. On Saturday between 10am and 4pm go along to see a magnificent selection of Birds Of Prey, including eagles and vultures. On Monday, August 22, and Tuesday, August 23, the wetlands will host A Life’s What You Make It art project. Create your own masterpiece in the centre’s new saline lagoon hide, each creation will feature in the end of summer exhibition.

The Rotary Club of Washington invited Andy Bell, an ambassador for stem cells, along as its speaker. Andy, 30, was seriously injured in a road accident, having spent 10 weeks in rehab, he was eventually told he would never walk again. A previously fit and energetic outdoor individual, he set himself a goal of two years to get back onto his feet. In order to achieve his ambition he looked into stem cell research, carried out by The Christopher Reeve Foundation. Andy eventually travelled to Bangkok for treatment. Three days after a stimulator procedure allowing the brain signal to bypass the effected area, he was able to lift his leg up, bending his knee up to his chin. Andy now does his own home training, and can stand for 30 minutes and walk 30 metres. He hopes to run in the Great North Run in 2018. You can follow Andy Bell’s journey by going onto his facebook “Mission To Walk” page.