A FORMER nurse is delivering some tender loving care to a famous South Tyneside social club.
Jan Minchell is hoping to restore the Top Club in Victoria Road, South Shields, to its former glory after taking over the reins there.
A regular for the last five years, Jan took over the tenancy when it became available a few weeks ago.
And she wants the club to once again be at the heart of the local community.
Jan said: “I just live just around the corner from the club, and taking over the tenancy was a new challenge for me.
“This is a close-knit community and I want the club to be at the heart of it again.”
Jan’s aim is to make the club a hive of activities, with a poker competition every Friday, dominoes and pool on a Monday, bingo and darts throughout the week and a large function room which is free for hire. Additionally, it is hoped to attract the ‘football crowd’ on a weekend.
Regulars and new customers are invited to attend a promotion night on Sunday, October 6. Jan, 53, has retained the previous staff and also brought in her daughter Rachel to help out.
She added: “It’s hard work, but I am enjoying it. I think the club has been here since the 1950s, originally as South Shields Labour Club.
“It had the nickname of the ‘Top Club’ even then, and there was the ‘Middle Club’ where The Office is now and the ‘Bin Lid’ at Laygate.
“All the clubs had nicknames, but this club was officially changed to the “Top Club” about 20 years ago.
The regulars in the club are very close, but anyone new will receive the warmest of welcomes.”