Fourteen slow cookers were lined up in Gonville Library on Wednesday afternoon, offering dozens of locals a delicious free lunch.

Gonville Community Soup Day was a joint venture between Gonville Library and its neighbour, the Gonville Health Centre. Also present were staff from a number of community organisations such as the Cancer Society, Gonville Health Pharmacy, Women's Network Whanganui and Women's Refuge.

Janine Rider, service manager at Gonville Health Centre, said the informal event was a way of giving something back to the community.

"It's just a chance for people to meet others in their community. And it's our chance to say thanks to the community and give something back.


"Having agencies here is a bit more of an informal way for people to talk to staff," Mrs Rider said.

The soups included chicken and vegetable, tomato, spicy vegetable, bacon hock, chicken and corn chowder - and many others - and were served with fresh buns.

The soups were made by staff from Gonville Health, as well as members of the Gonville Knitting Group, led by Kelly Scarrow.

Mrs Scarrow said a smaller event was held last year, but she was delighted by the big turn-out this year.

"It's been a great success. I think the cold weather made it an ideal day for soup," she said.