A GROUP of sewing fans have been doing their part to support frontline NHS staff by making potentially life-saving bags.

The 30-strong team, who are based in Earls Colne, have been spending the lockdown sewing scrub bags, bereavement bags and headbands for NHS staff.

The bags are designed to allow frontline staff to safely wash their scrubs when they get home as a form of infection control.

The headbands also protect staff from the sometimes uncomfortable elastic on personal protective equipment which NHS workers have to wear.

People from across the area have offered their support to help make the bags and with logistics, with money also being donated.

Julie Cass is leading the operation.

She said: “I have a team of 30 that have been sewing scrub bags, bereavement bags and headbands, which protect ears from the elastic on the PPE.

“We have sent out in the region of 1,300 parcels to the frontliners all over the UK and we also have more than 600 bags on request.

“I have set up an appeal for funds to enable us to do this and we are currently at £1,300.

“This is being used throughout on postage so it’s an ongoing appeal.

“We have one driver, Clive, who collects the fabric or bed linen which is donated by the public.

“It’s put in new plastic bags and delivered to the ladies that sew.

“After they have been made they are placed in new bags and collected by the driver who brings them back to be packed and sent off .

“As well as the ladies that sew, we have Debbie Jarvis who collates all the addresses .

“The driver then takes them to the post office.”

Driving is kept to two journeys a week and social distancing rules apply, with hand sanitiser used throughout the process.

The team’s efforts have been so successful that the group is struggling to find enough material to work with.

They are appealing to residents to donate any fabric or bed linen.

Julie added: “We are just ladies that believe in our NHS and are so very proud of the frontliners in these days of uncertainty.

“The whole team is awesome!”

n For more information on how to support the group’s efforts, contact Julie at janncass2004@yahoo.co.uk.