If you're looking for a social outlet or wishing to gain new skills, community centres such as Phoenix Park Neighbourhood House in East Malvern are a good place to start. At this recently-refurbished centre you can take up a range of courses like painting, computers and photography or join a social group like a book club or discussion group - all within a friendly and pleasant environment.
As a long-time attendant of this centre, I can vouch for the quality and variety of the courses on offer. For a couple of years I attended pilates and Hatha yoga classes and came away with improved muscle tone and the ability to fold my limbs into the most unlikely positions.
I have shimmied my way through almost every dance class on offer and marvelled as people twice my age would master complicated steps with aplomb and elegance. Modern jazz, tap, belly, Bollywood and ballroom with its subset of cha cha, waltz, tango and rock and roll - I've tried them all with varying success.
And then there are the courses and activities I'm yet to attempt –photographic courses, film appreciation, writing workshops, language lessons and numerous activities for kids like art classes, movement, music, etc. And did I mention the opportunity to meet new people and make friends?
From time to time the programs may change, but all offer good value while some are free. Check the website for a current program. You can also suggest a course or activity or offer to run one yourself so contact the friendly staff with your proposal.
Phoenix Park Neighbourhood House is conveniently located adjacent to a library and cafe in the grounds of the delightful Phoenix Park with its wooden fortress, play equipment, scate-board ramp and lawn areas.