Melrose calendar boys grin and bear it for new charity

Sylvie Szanel with the Men of Melrose calendar in aid of Priorwood Wellbeing Centre
Sylvie Szanel with the Men of Melrose calendar in aid of Priorwood Wellbeing Centre

A host of Melrose menfolk have agreed to grin and bare it in a bid to raise funds for a new charity set up to address mental health and social isolation issues.

Priorwood Wellbeing Centre, a charity set up in June, is raising money to convert part of Priorwood House in Melrose into a wellbeing hub.

It needs to find £25,000, and it has recruited male models from the town to help it hit that target.

Sylvie Szanel, a reiki therapist from Newtown, is behind the project, intended to offer therapy and support to people experiencing mental health issues or social isolation on a self-referral basis.

Sylvie said: “I have worked as a therapist in Melrose for the last three years, and it is so clear that there is a big need for this. Priorwood sits in quiet grounds and is ideal for what we do. It’s very peaceful and calm.”

The charity’s Men of Melrose calendar, featuring 24 male townsfolk and scenery including Rhymers Stone and Leaderfoot Bridge, is being launched tomorrow at Melrose Rugby Club between 7pm and 9pm. Entry to the event is free, and guests can enjoy a bar and buffet while learning more about the charity and meeting the models, all fully clothed on this occasion.

“They didn’t take a lot of persuasion, and we have men of all ages and all shapes in the calendar,” Sylvie added. “We have something for everyone.”

The calendars, priced £15, are on sale at Melrose’s Enchanted Clothes, Bank House Living and Simply Delicious shops, as well as the rugby club and post office.

The centre, opening in February, will include four complementary therapy rooms and spaces for counselling, sound and art therapy, along with a bistro and a shop.