Shropshire Star

Ludlow MP thanks residents offering hands of friendship to Ukrainian refugees

Ludlow MP Philip Dunne has been meeting with South Shropshire residents who have offered the hand of friendship and a room in their home to Ukrainian refugees.

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Linda Harris, Apley business development manager; Chris Hill, volunteer; Ali Penswick, Wellington host; Mike Cooper; Graeme Manton Apley Estate Director, Lynn Cooper, chairman of Help Ukraine Telford; Pam Rogers, host Ketley Grange; Anastasiia Limarenko, from Kharkiv, now Year 11 Priory School, hosted with mother and sister by Pam Rogers.

Mr Dunne met hosts and visitors in Cleobury Mortimer, where members of St Mary’s Church have co-ordinated help and hold weekly get togethers to share experiences of both hosts and their guests.

The MP said: ”We discussed how well access to schooling has been provided, though challenges for local transport presenting problems, helping Ukrainians with language lessons and employment opportunities.”

Mr Dunne has also met the volunteer coordinator for hosts around Ludlow, and Help for Ukraine supporters in Bishop's Castle.

Earlier this month he met organisers of Help Ukraine Telford, which includes hosts in Bridgnorth and Broseley, at their base in Norton.

There he met Lynn Cooper who together with her husband, Mike, helps to coordinate support for Ukrainian refugees who have already been housed with some 60 host families, as well as sending relief supplies to those in need who remain in Ukraine.

The organisation has been offered space, free of charge for six months on Apley Estate and is seeking new premises, ideally with shop frontage on one of the more accessible streets in Telford to help refugees more directly.

Mr Dunne added: “I was impressed by the scale of the efforts of this group to help house 177 Ukrainian refugees with host families in the area.

"I would urge anyone who has an empty shop or similar in Telford to get in touch with Lynn if they are able to offer help by contacting"