AN 85-YEAR-OLD former volunteer has told of her joy that a community café she calls the ‘centre of her life’ has reopened again after a ‘draining’ lockdown.

Sarah Chapman was ecstatic to cut the ribbon at the Carrick Centre as it welcomed back residents of Maybole last week.

After spending months shielding on her own like many over 70s, she was able to sit and have a coffee with friends once again after an awful time stuck indoors.

Sarah told the Advertiser: “I was always very proud of the Carrick Centre and I still am.

“It brings the two churches together and caters for the community so well. It’s a great thing for Maybole.

“When they spoke about closing the centre earlier in the year I said ‘over my dead body’ but I didn’t realise how severe this virus was going to be.”

Sarah, whose husband Walter passed away 10 years ago, has praised the community spirit of Maybole which helped her keep sane during lockdown.

She has told how local butcher David McKay was on hand to deliver food and would even pop into the Co-op next to his shop to get any extra essentials she would need.

And she has thanked Maybole Library for keeping her entertained by providing her with free audiobooks.

Sarah said: “It’s just been awful, as you get older too it drains your stamina.

“Where I stay we’ve got a nice community. We all got together when the weather was nice keeping our distance but being able to have a chat helped keep us sane

“My local butcher delivers my messages, I’m all for big supermarkets but there’s nothing to beat the local shops.

“I’ve also been listening to audio-books which are just fantastic, someone showed me how to download them so the library has been great too.”

But she was delighted to get back to the Carrick Centre.

Sarah added: “It was what I missed the most, it was the centre of my life. I went to the line dancing it was one of my activities. “

“When I saw everyone again, I couldn’t give them a hug as much as I wanted to. It was lovely to go back in and be part of it again. I had my coffee with some friends yesterday, I’ll go back next week for some other friends.”