THE first Grab a Granny event in Clydebank has been hailed a soaring success - despite being cancelled.

Weather forced organisers to call a halt to the planned gathering at the 543 Club in Dalmuir last Tuesday.

But 100 people turned up regardless and founder Jim McLaren said he has been fielding calls from residents keen to get out to the weekly gigs.

Jim, 2018 Citizen of the Year, told the Post: “It was absolutely amazing. I cancelled it with the weather but more than 100 people turned up.

“It’s every week now and it’s a great success.

“I have had phone calls after the Post ran the story with people sitting in their house on their own and we said we would sit them at a table so they’re not on their own.

“There are people who are isolated getting in touch.”

Jim, who founded the Golden Friendships Club, launched the Grab a Granny campaign earlier this month backed by Provost William Hendry and sponsored by Clydebank Estate & Letting Agents and taxi firm Clydebank Private Hire.

They’re putting out 20,000 leaflets so the public has a contact number and information about what they’re doing.

The goal is to combat social isolation and loneliness throughout the community and Jim said he hopes the idea will be replicated across Scotland.

A fundraising gala to be held on February 9 at the Golden Jubilee to support their campaign sold out before Christmas.

Provost William Hendrie said at the launch in January: “The campaign has been great. It’s fantastic and everyone knows about it.

“Jim has got a great vision for this.

“Everyone I have spoken to that has already been to the club is 100 per cent behind it – they ask when it’s on again; they love it.

“We thought there were places for everybody to go but now there really is.”

In August 2018, Jim was made West Dunbartonshire’s Citizen of the Year and community/voluntary individual champion as part of the Provost’s Civic Awards.

A group of 82 members enjoyed a trip south in November funded by donations to the club.

Grab a Granny runs every Tuesday from 2-4pm. Residents can call Jim on 07957 568 330 to find out more about the campaign.