Charity's 'meaningful' and 'magical' milestone

Young people cut the ribbon at Grimm & Co's official opening - photo by Andy BrownYoung people cut the ribbon at Grimm & Co's official opening - photo by Andy Brown
Young people cut the ribbon at Grimm & Co's official opening - photo by Andy Brown
FROM ''meaningful” and “wonderful” to “lively and imaginative” - a vast array of words were, unsurprisingly, used to describe the official opening of Grimm and Co's Emporium of Stories.

The literacy charity has converted the former Talbot Lane church into its new base, with a cafe ('feastery'), shop ('apothecary'), and writing workshop spaces.

Young people who have benefited from the charity's mission to 'change children's lives one story at a time' cut the ribbon on the building at an event attended by guests including trustees, patrons, the Mayor and Mayoress of Rotherham Cllr Robert Taylor and Tracy Taylor, South Yorkshire Mayor Oliver Coppard, and Rotherham Council leader Cllr Chris Read.

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Spoken word artist and BBC Radio Sheffield presenter Sile Sibanda has been involved with Grimm since moving to Rotherham with her mum, aged 12, after escaping the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe.

Spoken word artist and BBC Radio Sheffield presenter Sile Sibanda - photo by Andy BrownSpoken word artist and BBC Radio Sheffield presenter Sile Sibanda - photo by Andy Brown
Spoken word artist and BBC Radio Sheffield presenter Sile Sibanda - photo by Andy Brown

She said: “Our native tongues aren't the only tongues we have – we have our sister tongues, too.

“We are all from one family – Rotherham's family.”

Rev Jo Siddall, previous Minister of Talbot Lane and Minister of the Free Methodist Church, said: “It was wonderful to see the old Talbot Lane Methodist Church being used in such a meaningful and creative way - to help the children of Rotherham, I am certain, for generations to come.

“It was a painful process for the congregation when Talbot Lane had to close, but so good to see a listed building being used for good rather than being left empty to deteriorate and fall into rack and ruin.

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Writer in residence Jeremy Dyson at the official opening - photo by Andy BrownWriter in residence Jeremy Dyson at the official opening - photo by Andy Brown
Writer in residence Jeremy Dyson at the official opening - photo by Andy Brown

“One of the most meaningful parts of the day for me was when writer in residence, Jeremy Dyson, read chapter two of the Grimm ’story’ so far.

“He spoke of this new place which had always been a special place in times past – and, for many in Rotherham, the old Talbot Lane has been and always will be.”

Carrie Sudbury, chief executive of Barnsley and Rotherham Chamber of Commerce, said: “Grimm and Co’s dedication to nurturing young minds fits right in with our vision for a lively and imaginative Rotherham.

“The Emporium of Stories is set to spark creativity and leave a lasting impression.”

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