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Neath YMCA Good Friday breakfast tradition since 1881 going strong

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: April 20, 2014

Chairman Neath YMCA Kevin Lewis with guest speaker Dr Idris Baker at the Neath YMCA Good Friday Breakfast.

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IT has been a Good Friday tradition in Neath since 1881 and shows no sign of ending.

Yesterday the YMCA held its 133rd Good Friday breakfast in the town.

Organisers believe it is longest running and possibly only event of its kind in the area.

Around 100 people attended the the YMCA's Pen-y-Dre base.

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Centre manager Sian Smart said it went well.

"It was excellent," she said. "It has been a tradition for 133 years.

"I am not sure what they did during the war years, but apparently they still had breakfast."

The traditional breakfast included cold meats, salad and boiled potatoes, which were served along with hot cross buns.

Entertaining the guests was singer Allun Davies.

Ms Smart said they couldn't have done the breakfast without the massive support they had received.

"We had around 20 volunteers and I would like to thank everyone involved, including Pauline Tillbrook who did the catering and Neath Rotary Club," she said.

"We could also not do it without our sponsors, Barclays Bank and Neath Sportsman's Club and the traders in Neath Market."

A donation was made by market trader Brian Warlow despite his collection tin for the YMCA being stolen last week from Neath Health Store.

Following the theft, he said: "I am so upset with this as I have supported the Neath YMCA for years."

A collection at the breakfast also collected around £1,700 for the YMCA.

"This helps us with the upkeep and running of the YMCA," said Ms Smart.

A family fun day is to be held at the YMCA on Tuesday from 11am to 3pm. The open day will include lots of fun activities.

In August Neath YMCA received a cash boost of £243,563 from the Big Lottery People and Places Fund.

The money has allowed to charitable organisation to offer dedicated activity sessions and health improvement plans to people over 13.

The project will run for three years and will offer more than 1,100 sessions at Neath YMCA.

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