With so many new babies being born in Marton over the past few months, 12 keen knitters have got together to knit some woolly blessings.

Stephanie Shaw, a spinner and farmer, said Plunket had asked if the community could help out with the new babies, and she organised Woolly Blessings, a group to make clothes to gift to new mums.

"[It's needed] because there is a large Samoan population here who really don't know that it is important for young babies to wear wool."

Ms Shaw said the cold always took them by surprise so the Plunket nurse thought it would be great idea to gift each new baby with a pure wool set including a Plunket-style singlet, a jersey and hats.

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The group of women meet at St Stephen's Church every Tuesday morning and are given the needles, the wool and the patterns.

"They don't supply anything, just their skill to knit up these wee garments."
The group had become very popular, she said.

"We've even got an older woman in her 80s who is not very mobile, but she knits away at home and sends us lovely baby clothes every week."

Wool was being donated constantly so the bags were always good and full, she said.
"This is where the Marton community are so good. If it's for good, the community people step forward all the time. You don't ever have to go looking."

There were also quite a few young parents now in Marton needing help with baby gear, she said.