FUN parent and child sessions in Helensburgh were fully booked within 10 minutes of places becoming available recently, according to the chair of the charity which runs them.

Sarah Davies from Fun First told community chiefs that face-to-face sessions have become available to book online – and that parents have rushed to book them to the extent that not long after going on sale at 6pm on a Wednesday, all sessions were full.

The charity was forced to suspend its sessions at the start of the first UK-wide Covid lockdown in March 2020, though virtual alternatives were soon organised online.

Face-to-face sessions, with limited spaces available, have now resumed at the Drumfork Community Centre in the town.

Ms Davies said it is hoped that more sessions will operate when community halls and spaces, such as the Victoria Halls, are able to open up and host events.

The update was given to members of Argyll and Bute Council’s Helensburgh and Lomond community planning group at a recent virtual meeting.

READ MORE: Fun First holds first face-to-face sessions for Helensburgh children and parents in more than a year

Ms Davies said: “You will be aware that during Covid, young parents and young children have been hard hit in being isolated at home. They haven’t had others, or relatives or grandparents, in to support them during this time.

“As soon as restrictions were lifted, we have tried our best to get back to face-to-face activities, all of which we are booking online.

“So many people are desperate to join these things that booking goes live at 6pm on a Wednesday evening, and every space is booked by 6.10pm.

“The only thing stopping us doing more is halls opening up, so hopefully this will be soon.

“We usually use the library and the Victoria Halls. Neither is open at the moment, but the Victoria Halls will hopefully be next week.”

Fun First works with pre-school children aged zero to five years, and sessions involve parents and kids taking part in storytelling and singing, although the latter is not currently allowed.

READ MORE: Argyll and Bute to move into level 1 Covid restrictions, First Minister confirms

Newly-elected Helensburgh and Lomond South Conservative councillor Gemma Penfold was among those praising the efforts of the charity.

She said: “Thank you for opening Fun First back up. I have a 13-month-old and he has been there for the last two weeks. They have been run really well, with social distancing in place.

“This has really worked in the Drumfork Club and it is really good seeing the kids interacting together again.

“Another venue in Helensburgh that you could consider is the Guide Hall in John Street.

“I use that for my dance school and it could be a place you could use. It is just round the corner from the library.”

More information on the fun sessions is available at

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