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South Shields: open air juice bar helps church refresh local community

With temperatures soaring again, a North East church has set up an open-air juice bar for people passing by its front door ...

With temperatures soaring again, a North East church has set up an open-air juice bar for people passing by its front door.

The initiative being run by St Hilda’s in South Shields town centre is seen as a way of making the church more accessible to members of the public.

The vicar, Father Chris Fuller, who took up his post two months ago, said: “There is a huge footfall of people going past our entrance every day, walking between the market place and the Asda superstore, but few of them enter the church even though we have a coffee bar.

“We thought that there was an opportunity to come out and engage with them in the open and offer them refreshments.

“Our hope is to make people realise that the church is there for them and show that we are friendly and there to support them, that we offer a chance to pause in a busy life.

“We need to be out there with the public and not simply behind closed doors. It has already allowed me to meet people I would not otherwise have met.”

The juice bar will run until the end of August on Saturdays between 10am and 3pm and Monday opening is being considered as well if the weather is particularly hot.

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