A church group encouraging Weymouth residents from across the globe to get to know the community has had a successful first year.

The World Café, in St Aldhelm’s Church on Spa Road, welcomes those born outside the UK to get to know one another while learning English language and British culture in an informal setting.

Launched last year, the group has steadily grown in size with residents from Thailand, China, Syria, Poland, Estonia, Hungary and Sri Lanka now attending the weekly meetings.

Piret Kotkas, who moved to Weymouth from Estonia in 2005, has been going to the World Café since it opened.

She said it was an inspiring place and helped people become part of the community.

She said: “It was a good opportunity for me to learn some more English and meet different people from other cultures.

“All the church volunteers are really nice, they put a lot of planning into their sessions and I’ve learn a lot there.

“They teach us English and different customs of English culture, like favourite foods and public holidays.

“We also listen to other people tell us about their homes and we have people from the community come in to do talks, such as police officers.

“It helps people to feel they are a part the Weymouth community.”

Piret, who works in a nursing home, said this is her first experience of the church, and one which has been wholly positive.

She said: “It’s been great, I really love it. I have made friends at the group which I will see outside the church.”

The World Cafe welcomes people of all faiths, backgrounds and nationalities and also provides some childcare for visitors.

It is run by a team of volunteers with varying backgrounds in teaching either as retired teachers or teaching English as a foreign language.

The session takes place in the front lounge of the church every Monday from 9.15am until 11am.