When St Annes grandmother Alison Forster set up a Facebook group to bring local women together, she didn’t quite expect the response she got.
She has lived in the area for about a year and decided to start a local social and business networking group – for women to advertise their businesses and products for free, to chat, exchange tips and advice and promote local events taking place.
Word quickly spread and the group – Lytham St Annes And Blackpool Gossip Girls Group – now has more than 8,000 members.
Alison, who has been self-employed most of her working life, said: “It has just grown organically. I am the administrator of the group and I check all posts to make sure there are no problems, but everything has been overwhelmingly positive.
“It’s a really empowering group. Everybody is so supportive of each other, helpful and friendly, it’s fantastic. Many friendships have formed already.
“I have set up face-to-face business meetings and am planning social meetings. It’s not all about business, although a lot of local women have found it useful for advertising. People have swapped tips, promoted local events, and we have a day where businesses can give discounts.
“One lady posted asking if anyone could translate something from Dutch and straight away two people were able to help.
“I think it’s always nice to see people from different generations chatting too and there’s always room in life for more friends.”
The group has received rave reviews and positive feedback – including one member commenting: “It has and gives you such a feeling of sisterhood, motivation and positivity.”