VOLUNTEERS are needed to step up and organise tea parties for lonely pensioners.

Contact the Elderly has issued an urgent appeal for volunteers to spare just a few hours twice a year to host a local tea party.

The charity, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, aims to relieve the loneliness of isolated older people aged 75 and over, by running monthly tea parties.

The charity’s existing group in Barnsley is full, and the hope is to get enough volunteer hosts to open a second group.

The charity’s local spokeswoman Angela Handforth said: “The simple volunteering structure means you can be involved as much or as little as possible.

“Anyone who can spare a couple of hours, twice a year to host a tea party, are welcome to sign up. It’s not a big commitment, and our volunteers genuinely get as much out of the experience as our older guests.”

Call Angela on 0114 230 2343 for more information or to volunteer.