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Men’s Shed group on hunt for a place to call home

PUBLISHED: 09:46 22 September 2020 | UPDATED: 10:23 22 September 2020

Swaffham Men's Shed members Gordon, Colin and Dave, in a shed they helped to build.  Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's Shed

Swaffham Men's Shed members Gordon, Colin and Dave, in a shed they helped to build. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's Shed

Archant

The search is on for a ‘shed’ to give men a place to relax, chat and work on their hobbies in Swaffham.

Howard Cardus, chairman of the Swaffham Men's Shed group, which is searching for a permanent home. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's ShedHoward Cardus, chairman of the Swaffham Men's Shed group, which is searching for a permanent home. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's Shed

The Swaffham Men’s Shed group, which was launched at the end of 2019, is now looking for a permanent place to base itself.

Howard Cardus, chairman of the group, said: “Our biggest issue at present is to find our own premises and we are now following up on as many leads as possible.

“Plus we need to secure as much funding as we can so we are able to take on the right premises to provide this much needed community facility.”

Support for the town’s Men’s Shed group grew quickly after it was launched.

A 'fairy house' one of the projects completed at the Swaffham Men's Shed. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's ShedA 'fairy house' one of the projects completed at the Swaffham Men's Shed. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's Shed

Within a few weeks they had 25 members and had already started work on a constitution so they could become a charitable incorporated organisation. The group also gained support from Swaffham’s Iceni Partnership, Norfolk County Council’s adult social services and national Men’s Shed representative.

Mr Cardus said the group had attracted a mix of retired as well as working-age men. At least two of its members are registered disabled, and a number are ex-military.

Mr Cardus said: “We expect our numbers will grow once the project has a firm base. We already have an amazing array of skills, and would love to build our own shed, or renovate a run-down building.”

The idea for Men’s Shed started in Australia and has spread around the world - there are currently 600 in the UK.

Members of the Swaffham Men's Shed helped to build this back garden shed before the lockdown. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's ShedMembers of the Swaffham Men's Shed helped to build this back garden shed before the lockdown. Picture: Supplied by Swaffham Men's Shed

They are well-known for improving the mental health and well-being of their members and for reducing social isolation. Members can work on projects and hobbies of their choosing.

Mr Cardus said they wanted to ask the Swaffham community for suggestions about where they could be based.

He said: “If you are aware of somewhere that might be suitable for a Men’s Shed, please let us know.

“Men’s Sheds can be set up in almost any kind of building! Some examples include industrial units, empty shops, garages, churches, portacabins, outbuildings, greenhouses, shipping containers, etc.

“It is also common for groups to build their own sheds on a piece of redundant land, in a car park, or behind a community hall. We are looking for a premises or land in Swaffham or in one of the surrounding villages. “

Any suggestions or new member enquiries can be made to Dave Jordan by emailing davejordan777@gmail.com or calling 01760 336236.


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