Anything is possible if you have a shed, it’s said. And after a few months of hard work and drinking tea, it’s about to happen for a Galashiels group.
The Men’s Shed movement has come a long way from its beginnings in Australia 12 years ago.
Social gatherings for men are fairly limited in the Borders, other than a visit to the pub. And your local landlord may not be too keen on punters turning up with power tools.
The need was there for men to get together, relax over a hot beverage, share skills and knowledge of a broad range of subjects, and perhaps get the sense of achievement that comes from helping people and being a part of the community.
So in November, Gordon Elliot, health improvement specialist with the Healthy Living Network, based in Langlee Community Centre, got together with Nigel Sargent, development officer with the Volunteer Centre Borders, and together, they pulled in a number of interested fellows who had seen an article on the subject in The Southern.
Mr Sargent told us: “ We have met every week since November and we have been on a fact-finding trip to a similar facility at Macmerry in East Lothian, and were very impressed.”
And now, the group is on the verge of finalising their own premises, local businesses such as B&Q are willing to donate wood for their first project – building planters for the sensory garden at the centre at Langlee – and they are trying to source tools from a number of places.
Mr Sargent added: “We are almost at that breakthrough point.
“It’s good to see what we have worked towards finally come to fruition and the guys are really excited to get going with their first project.”
If anyone has any unused tools they would like to donate, or if they feel they have some skill or knowledge on any subject they would like to impart, or indeed, if they would simply like to come along and join them, they should contact Mr Sargent in the first instance on 0845 602 3921.