Introducing the Barking & Dagenham Stroke Club
As part of the Framing Marks Gate series we photographed and interviewed a series of local residents and key workers who have played an interesting role on Marks Gate. Meet the Barking & Dagenham Stroke Club who meet every Tuesday on Marks Gate at the Marks Gate Community Centre. It’s founder Pat Grocott lives on the estate with her husband John. Members of the club travel from all over the borough to meet on a weekly basis.
What’s your name & age?
Andrew Jones, 50
Anne Evans, 88
Kit Tibbles, 93
Pat Grocott, 78
Joan Lavender, 92
(from left to right)
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Pat: I’ve been running the Stroke club for 40 years now, after I had a stroke in 1974 which left me disabled right side but still mobile. The club began in Romford, shortly after we moved to Dagenham and were based at St Georges School, 3 years ago we relocated the club on Marks Gate. The Club is a social and support club for people who have suffered from a stroke, it provides us with a social space to meet and share. At it’s height in Dagenham, the club had 81 members, we are now 8.
Why are you on Marks Gate?
The Stroke Club has been meeting on Marks Gate for last 3 years.
How long have you known Marks Gate?
Pat: As the Stroke Club, 3 years, however I have lived on Marks Gate since 1968.
What are your experiences of Marks Gate?
For members of the club who do not live on Marks Gate, the estate is rather out of the way and hard for people to get to, this has meant our numbers have dwindled. However it is a lovely group and we enjoy meeting every week to partake in a number of activities including a raffle, bingo, scrabble, dominoes, cards, quizzes and more!
Tell us a special memory that you have of Marks Gate.
As a group we have really enjoyed the tea parties that artist Sadia has hosted as part of her project ‘A Local Dialogue’ and we are really looking forward to the Mad Hatter’s tea party next week!